President Trump praises Gen. Flynn, slams 'criminal' leaks

This is a rush transcript from "The Five," February 15, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE, CO-HOST: Hi everyone, I'm Kimberly Guilfoyle along with Juan Williams, Eric Bolling, Dana Perino, and Greg Gutfeld. It's 5 o'clock in New York City and this is "The Five."

Today, President Trump addressed the firestorm that's erupted following the departure of his National Security advisor, Mike Flynn. The president asked for General Flynn's on Monday due to an eroding level of trust according to the White House. But he defended his former aide earlier and blamed illegal intelligent leaks for bringing Flynn down.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Michael Flynn, General Flynn, is a wonderful man. I think he's been treated very, very unfairly by the media, as I call it the fake media in many cases and I think it's really a sad thing that he was treated so badly. I think in addition to that, from intelligence, papers are being leaked. Things are being leaked. Its criminal action, criminal act, and it's been going on for a long time before me.

But now it's really going on and people are trying to cover up for a terrible loss that the Democrats had under Hillary Clinton. I think it's very, very unfair what's happened to General Flynn, the way he was treated and the documents and papers that were illegally -- I stress that -- illegally leaked. Very, very unfair.


GUILFOYLE: OK, a very strong statement coming from the president, from the commander-in-chief, in defense of his friend, someone who was loyal to him from the very beginning, General Michael Flynn. Eric, if you take these two statements, the one that was read yesterday that was prepared today and you saw that Sean Spicer was reading it when this announcement went out, and the juxtaposition with these words that the president had today.

ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: So, I don't think they're -- So, all day long I'm hearing, oh, how can you justify this? How can they say this, and then that? I think what President Trump was talking about right there, and I could be wrong, what's going on surrounding the General Flynn resignation.

Now clearly he asked for the resignation but that doesn't mean he can't -- president Trump can't say the way he's been treated. He's been treated unfairly by the press. I think those two are both true. I think he was asked to step down because of what he did with Vice President Pence. He put him in a place where he went on the Sunday shows and talked about speaking to Flynn and Flynn giving him his word that he hadn't spoken with the Russians. Later to find out that there may be some, I don't know, nine sources by "The Washington Post" and others saying that it happened.

So he asks for the resignation. He gets it, but still it's all day long. It's a pounding. "The New York Times" piece today was very, very long and everyone is referring to "The New York Times" piece today in the taking down a Flynn. But I read this thing three separate times. You know what I read? I read taking down a Flynn and then saying in the piece, the officials interviewed in recent weeks said that so far they have no evidence of such cooperation with the White House.

Then I heard a taking down of Paul Manafort and then they walked that one back a little bit. They start from the tone saying, well, he's not charged of any crimes, and then I saw another one about the dossier tjaty they allegedly had on Donald Trump, the Russians that was going to be used for blackmail, and they said, well, they can't confirm any of those either. So, it was a very extensive peace with a lot of allegations and no, and this is important, no sources named.

GUILFOYLE: Yes, it's pretty unbelievable, Dana, but at least there's a comprehensive piece to go through it and kind of lay out the whole story in the scenario, and there's a lot of moving parts here. What's your take away today now at this point after hearing all of it and reading these different competing (pg) pieces?

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: Well I thought where they left the story yesterday was probably the best place that it was, which is that the president after the resignation, after this eroding trust, you can't trust the national security advisor and administration if there's a trust problem within the West Wing, and then the administration that's going to continue to be a problem.

So I thought that they acted decisively, even if it was maybe a couple of weeks late, but they get it done. They get it in a box, that's the story of the day. By reopening the issue again in this way, which is basically like picking up the scab, it's like, well, OK, but what was the worst part for you, Mr. President? Was it the eroding trust or the fact that the intelligence community was going after him and maybe in an inappropriate way.

And if they hadn't gone after him but you still knew this other information, will the trust have been eroded? And so I think that they're going to have another day's worth of story or maybe the next few days, they're going to have to grin and bear it with this story because it's not going to end.

The other thing I would say is that there's so much that we don't know. And I think that there's no shame in saying I don't know if you're speaking for the president or even the president. I don't know how much he knows. There's all of this different leaks. Also other information that's coming out from different sources and that's a little bit unnerving, but especially if you are speaking for the president and you're not the president, you don't have access to all the information that the Justice Department or FBI has.

There is no shame in saying I don't know because if you say something today that turns out to be wrong three days from now, you're going to have to revisit it all again. So I would just tap the brakes, slow down a little bit and not try to answer everything.

GUILFOYLE: OK, Greg, what do you make of the comments and in particular the president's defense of Flynn and the focus on the intelligence leaks?

GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: I would like to address all the people that are like -- that are worried that this is going to be something really big and that Trump is going to be done. He's been done more times than the average porn star. He was done after the McCain comment. He was done after the face (ph) comment. He was done after the reporter mockery. He was done after their hot mic on the bus.

Everybody's got to calm down. Calm down. Let's not forget how the Dems and the media played down President Obama's hot mic moments with Medvedev. Remember when he said, "Oh, don't worry after the election, we'll deal with it." That seems a little bit worse than this.

And let's not forget Ted Kennedy who plotted with the KGB to prevent Ronald Reagan from becoming president. He had secret contacts with Russians back when the Russians were really the bad guys, when it was the USSR, when they were communists. And I don't remember an activist left-wing media blowing their minds over that.

Here's the irony though, the one thing that, you know, Trump is known for saying you are fired, right. But there's one thing he didn't do enough of, and that is firing. He didn't drain the swamp and now the swamp is trying to drain him.

You have all these Obama loyalists, these deep state, you know, intelligent people that are there, that are trying to bring him down because they happen to still be there. They're still there. He probably needs to stop hiring the Omarosa's and start hiring the loyalists from the past.

GUILFOYLE: Did you ever think you were going to say that statement.

GUTFELD: Yes. I don't even know what I just said.

GUILFOYLE: I know, exactly. All right, so Juan, hello there.


GUILFOYLE: Hello. So, obviously a lot of reading material today, which I know you did. What do you think about how this was handled when you look at the past 24 hours, sort of the genesis of this and now the aftermath?

WILLIAMS: Well, I mean, I guess there are a couple questions about the handling. I say the number one question and it was raised today in some paper was did these intelligence agencies have a court order when they in fact were conducting the surveillance because normally if you're an American on the phone line even if you're talking to a foreign official, you are protected by intelligence agencies. So that was not the case here.

So what was going on? Why were they looking into his conversations? It's obvious that I think that it is tied into the question of whether or not Russia was interfering in the campaign, the election season. And here, Eric, I think that's where "The New York Times" was saying it's not just Flynn. It's Carter Page, it's Roger Stone, people associated with Trump who were in constant contact with Russian intelligence officials during the course of the campaign.

BOLLING: I was just quoting "The New York Times." The officials interviewed in recent weeks said that so far, they had no evidence of such cooperation.

WILLIAMS: No, no, no, I said they were in constant --

BOLLING: Roger Stone by the way, Roger Stone wasn't part of the campaign.

WILLIAMS: No, Roger Stone was very much a part at one point and then distanced by Trump but always involves -- but he's clearly an associate of Donald Trump.

GUILFOYLE: Well, he's known him for like years.

WILLIAMS: I think right now though the big problem for Trump is, you know, I listen to all of you, seems like, hey, calm down, it's not the end says Greg. But I want to tell you something, I see Republicans right now, Mitch McConnell, the senate majority leader saying, you know, we're going to have a deep, real investigation by a senate that's led a majority by Republicans into what happened with the Russians in this campaign.

And you see Roy Blunt of Missouri in addition to, you know, many people say well, it's John McCain, it's Lindsey Graham. But now, there's a good group of Republicans who are saying, you know what, something's wrong here and we're not going to get our shoes messed up by what Trump is up to.

GUTFELD: That's why I have to agree -- Andrew McCarthy has a great piece in the "National Review" today. He always says this, if you release the tape of the phone conversation, it ends this. If the phone conversation shows that Flynn talked about sanctions, then it was good that Flynn got fired. If you listen to the phone call and you find out that there is nothing there, then you realize there's nothing there.

GUILFOYLE: But, yes, whether it's one quick sentence or --

GUTFELD: Yes. They saw a book.

GUILFOYLE: -- you know, pages of it, the FBI investigated and didn't find evidence of wrongdoing.

BOLLING: Yes, and I don't think even that is the reason he got fired. I honestly think he was -- even if they did find that there was a discussion with the Russian diplomat and it may have --

GUILFOYLE: It doesn't violate the Logan Act.

BOLLING: Yes. That's not why the rest of the nation, they would say the --

GUILFOYLE: The trust issue.

BOLLING: -- the eroding trust of General Flynn by Donald Trump that Spicer and --

WILLIAMS: The timeline suggests something else here.


WILLIAMS: Let me ask you BOLLING: The timeline, if you want to dig deep, the timeline suggests that this started under the President Obama administration prior to --

WILLIAM: What? The investigation?


WILLIAM: Oh, the investigation, absolutely.

BOLLING: Yes, but think about that for just one second. Put this in your pipe and smoke it a little bit.


BOLLING: So this started under President Obama before Donald Trump was elected president. That's not using the DOJ, the FBI, and the NSA for political (ph) partisan?

WILLIAMS: Of course not, it's a real investigation.

BOLLING: How is it not.

WILLIAMS: There's a real investigation.

BOLLING: A political witch hunt. It's a political witch hunt. Witch hunt it is.

WILLIAMS: To see if Russians interfere in our American elections?

BOLLING: Well, going --

WILLIAMS: No, let me just say. Let me go back to my earlier point.

BOLLING: No, going back to -- by the way, your point of going after General Flynn, he's an American citizen, right.

WILLIAMS: Yes, that's right but he was acting in a way so as to interfere with U.S. foreign policy.

BOLLING: I would love to see what he's fighting for. I'd love to see the evidence.

WILLIAMS: But what I was going to say to you earlier was --

GUILFOYLE: He was the incoming and head of the council --

WILLIAMS: Yes, we can have a conversation but you can't undermine American --

GUTFELD: That's why the phone call -- you got to hear the phone call.

WILLIAMS: Right. So let's hear it. But here is what --

GUILFOYLE: Right, but there is no evidence that he undermined it. We don't have --

WILLIAMS: That's right. That would be the -- that's what Greg is telling. Let's see the transcript, but I just wanted to ask -- say something quickly to Eric. The timeline suggests that President Trump got the information, actually through his lawyer, from Sally Yates, who was then the acting attorney general. And then he gets --

BOLLING: That's the liberal timeline.

WILLIAMS: No, no, no, this is the real timeline. OK, so then the lawyers tell Trump. This is a -- Trump then has a meeting with Pence. He has a meeting with Bannon but he doesn't tell, guess who, Vice President Pence hey, guess what, this guy lied to you. Now that's bad news for Pence.


BOLLING: There's a good indication that this started even prior to Yates getting this information and that would have been -- that would have been - -

WILLIAMS: The investigation.

BOLLING: Yes. Well, is that a problem?

GUILFOYLE: I want to get Dana's word in on this.

PERINO: We don't know why and so as what I'm saying that maybe there was a reason and so that's why I'm saying there's no shame in saying I don't know. And the other thing is, this is from a crisis communication standpoint, when it comes to your timeline, if you are -- you have to know your -- when you go into a presidential debate you have to know your record better than your opponents do. When you go into crisis communication, you better understand the timeline as well as the press does because that often trips people up.

GUILFOYLE: Leave it there.

GUTFELD: I have no idea what my timeline is.

BOLLING: Can I say one thing though, if the NSA -- they have those conversations.


WILLIAMS: Those are available.

BOLLING: So if there is something, if there's evidence, we're going to hear it.

GUILFOYLE: Calls note in. We're going to dig in a little deeper on these intelligence leaks. Coming up next, our chief intelligence correspondent joins us. Stay right here.


BOLLING: All right, back now to the president's outrage over all the leaks coming out of U.S. intelligence including ones he says brought down his former National Security advisor, General Mike Flynn. Are these leaks illegal, as Mr. Trump believes? Let's bring in our chief intelligence correspondent, Catherine Herridge. Catherine, tell us about the leaks. What are the latest on the leaks? What are you hearing?

CATHERINE HERRIDGE, CHIEF INTELLIGENCE CORRESPONDENT, FOX NEWS: Well, thanks Eric. Well, a bunch of names are circulating in Washington based on access to the intelligence because phone call transcript are highly restrictive and also based on the leakers possible motivation. We are contacting this former intelligence and Obama administration officials directly and individually before reporting anything further.

Meantime, writing in a tweet today, President Trump said, "The real scandal here is that classified information is illegally given out by "intelligence" like candy. Very un-american!" he said.

The Flynn phone call transcripts with a Russian ambassador are especially problematic from a legal point of view and from an intelligence point of view because there are special protections to shield Americans when the intelligence community picks up their conversations while monitoring a foreign national as a target.

Identifying the American caller would have required approval from the intelligence courts as well as senior Obama administration officials since the calls were made in December. Revealing highly classified restricted intelligence is a violation of multiple criminal statutes according to a former Justice Department official.


THOMAS DUPREE, FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL: The information that was leaked is among the most sensitive classified information the United States government's possession. This is information that any national security official who ran across this or touched this would instinctively know that this is not meant for public distribution.


HERRIDGE: The ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee told Fox's Shepard Smith this afternoon that he does expect to get a classified briefing and likely see those transcripts at any time, Eric.

BOLLING: All right. Thank you very much, Catherine Herridge.

HERRIDGE: You're welcome.

BOLLING: The president calls the Flynn leaks a criminal act. Congressman Steve King describes it as a political assassination. Listen.


REP. STEVE KING (R), IOWA: What troubles me is let's just say -- it's clear that there are people within the intelligence committee that disagree with president Trump that don't want to see his administration succeed. That's part of the configuration of these timed leaks that came out and General Flynn has been subject to a political assassination here regardless of what he did or didn't say to President Trump or Vice President Pence.


BOLLING: All right, KG, the Trump administration needs to not get too far out over their skis (ph) on this one in case there is some damning information in some of these conversations.

GUILFOYLE: For sure, and also don't fall for the trap. They want the president to make some kind of statement then they'll suggest that he's trying to interfere with an investigation and make more problems, but it's admirable. He wants to be loyal and defend, you know, Mike Flynn, but at the same time there's a lot at stake here and there's an investigation going. But thus far, the investigation that started under President Obama and with Comey, that found no evidence of wrongdoing.

But there could be other intersects, but it's pretty incredible that they went to these lengths to be able to access and listen in on this. I mean it really suggests such politicization of the intelligence community like making -- really trying to, in my opinion, looks like they are trying to to go after one side in particular to (INAUDIBLE) to the benefit at that time of Hillary Clinton and her candidacy.

BOLLING: Dana, if we take a step back for a second, so the "Washington Post" publishes a piece on Thursday night I believe it was, with nine sources.


BOLLING: So it's nine separate leaks?

PERINO: Or well, I don't know. I mean that's -- we know --

BOLLING: Right, I mean, you see where that --

PERION: But I mean you don't say nine is like (INAUDIBLE). You don't say a few sources.

BOLLING: It's a baseball --

PERINO: You're saying I have nine sources. That is significant.

BOLLING: So what do you think is --

GUTFELD: Maybe it's German for no, with those sources.


GUILFOYLE: Different selling but creative.


BOLLING: I think we solved it --

GUILFOYLE: So many things in life are --


GUILFOYLE: If only they had Rosetta Stone.

BOLLING: So Trump needs to plug the leaks either way.

GUTFELD: Yes, but I mean, the question is how many civil servants are leftovers from the old boss that are still there-- the lowest learner types. I think there are three forces behind this. There are the intel leftovers that are still there, there's the media, and there is Trump who made the mistake of not forcefully coming out against Putin when he had the chance because that lends the appearance that the other two groups going after them have some evidence, which they don't.

I mean, there is no evidence that there was collusion yet. But because Trump was so --

BOLLING: Magnanimous.

GUULFOYLE: Magnanimpus.

GUTFELD: Thank you -- that didn't help Trump, if you follow that.

BOLLING: Juan, and while we're talking about all these leaks and we're talking about this, we're not talking about some of the other important -- Look, you yourself I'm guessing would think that the Russian spy ship off the coast is a big issue.

WILLIAMS: We'll talk about --

BOLLING: I'm guessing NATO, Trump administration pushing back against NATO allies saying, hey, your fair share. We're not talking about those things, we're talking about leaks.

WILLIAMS: I think if you're a Trump supporter, I think what I've seen in the polls as you're saying, hey, why aren't we talking about tax cuts? Why aren't we talking about Obamacare? Why aren't we all talking about things that affect my family? Instead there's all this, what I think of as chaos and backstabbing. Greg, I think there's a lot more backstabbing going on right now. I think it's obvious among Trump people inside that very tight circle.

GUTFELD: Right. There is not a centralized power there.


PERINO: Right. I mean, we might be surprised were some of the leaks are coming from.

WILLIAMS: Yes. I think -- I don't think it's --

GUTFELD: Are you saying it's Omarosa (ph).

PERINO: No, of course --

WILLIAMS: But I will say this to add to our conversation, now, I think part of what the intelligence people are looking into that's not going to make everybody so comfortable is Trump. What did he know? And it's exactly what did he possibly tell General Flynn to do in those conversations when it came to the sanctions issue?

Obama puts in place for sanctions. The Russians for some reason don't respond. Totally out of the ordinary. And I think that triggered in the intelligence community a sense of hey, something is up here. And suddenly the question now becomes when did Trump know it? And why did Trump, for example, not --

BOLLING: Isn't this exactly the same thing that Greg pointed out in his talking point in the A-block (ph) there. Hey, there was a tape of President Obama saying, "After the election I'll have a lot more leeway."

WILLIAMS: Well, that's basic politics. That's not involving --

GUTFELD: So, this could be politics too. A guy in transition -- not that kind of transition -- but to transition into a role of saying hey, you know, we'll talk to you about it later, and he knew --

GUILFOYLE: But he's allowed to do that.

GUTFELD: Yes, and he knew the guy --

GUILFOYLE: There is nothing illegal with that.

GUTFELD: -- for years.

WILLIAMS: Yes but you can't undercut policy.

GUTFELD: But the thing is he may not have. We don't know.

WILLIAMS: We don't know.

BOLLING: Let's not speculate. Let's just leave it right there. Ahead, relations with Israel, our strongest ally in the Middle East, had been greatly strained during the Obama administration, but thankfully it's a new era now. Hear what Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Trump told the world today at a joint press conference from the White House. That's next.


PERINO: Israel Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, made his first visit to the White House in more than two years today. Relations between Israel and the United States had been strained during the past administration but earlier Netanyahu voiced confidence that our alliance will grow stronger during the Trump administration.

At a news conference, President Trump was asked if he'd seek a two-state solution in the Middle East. That's the long-standing position of the United States and here is what he and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had to say on that issue.


TRUMP: I'm looking at two-state and one-state and I like the one that both parties like. I thought for a while that the two-state looked like it may be the easier of the two, but honestly if Bibi and if the Palestinians -- if Israel and the Palestinians are happy, I'm happy with the one they like the best.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL: It's the label. What does that (INAUDIBLE) mean by two states, OK? Obviously it means different things. I told you what are the conditions that I believe are necessary for an agreement. It's the recognition of the Jewish state and it's Israel's -- Israel's security control of the entire area. If you want to deal with labels, deal with labels. I'll deal with substance.

PERINO: So Juab, I wanted to ask you because you've been covering Washington for so long and back in, well, I thought it was the Clinton administration but it might've been earlier. The two-state solution saying that Israel and the Palestinians would have two state living side-by-side in peace that had been established foreign policy for a long time, but that could be changing, and what do you think the consequences of that are?

WILLIAMS: Well, we don't know because we don't know what the change would be too. What we do know is that the two-state solution is something of the Palestinians and the Israelis have bought into in the past, so with the United States, they're saying that we can negotiate this deal. We'll figure out how to make everything fit into this framework, you understood the game.

But now president Trump is saying, well, let's look for some possible altern (ph). He's not ruling out the two-state solution, he's just saying he's willing to look elsewhere. But the thing is, it's such a volatile situation that once you do away with that, like today he's saying, you know, we might move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. Well, boy, you know, that's going to antagonize the Palestinians and so many in the Arab world and it might make a deal more difficult.

PERINO: But I do wonder if some people think that the stalemate has been going on for so long that to put some uncertainty or be willing to change it up might actually lead to a solution.

BOLLING: See, I've been listening to this all day and the left is just going bonkers. So, for 20 years or whatever, 30 years we've had a, you know, kind of an agreement pushing towards a two-state solution. President Trump just blew 12 years, whatever it was, of foreign policy out of the water. What I heard was him saying well, whatever the two groups, whatever the Palestinians and the Israelis come up with, he'll support it. He'll help facilitate whatever the solution is.

I don't even think that was the most intriguing thing -- look, it was a great relationship. You take a step back, you see two good friends, two great allies that will remain, and that's important for us.

But for me, the most -- the moment when Trump turns and says, "I don't know. Let's slow down on the settlements." And Netanyahu was going, "Hold on. I'm not sure we're ready to agree to that." That was a powerful moment, but what it showed me was Donald Trump, he was elected for being that guy right at that podium right there. He was just talking. He was talking about what he was thinking. He was -- he wasn't worried about what he was saying, whether he was going to change 12 years of foreign policy. He was saying, "Look, I support Israel. They're our great friend. Let's have peace in that region. We'll try and help it out." And he talks in a very familial way.

PERINO: Well, another thing that did come up was Iran. And here's one of his soundbites from that.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The security challenges faced by Israel are enormous, including the threat of Iran's nuclear ambitions.

My administration has already imposed new sanctions on Iran, and I will do more to prevent Iran from ever developing -- I mean ever -- a nuclear weapon.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: One thing is preventing Iran from getting nuclear weapons, something that President Trump and I, I think, are deeply committed to doing. I think we can roll back Iran's aggression and danger; and that's something that is important for Israel, the Arab states, but I think it's vitally important for America.


PERINO: One thing we didn't hear, Greg, is what that would entail. And part of the interesting dynamic today was that they held their press conference before they had their meeting. So we don't know exactly what was discussed. What do you think about that tough stance on Iran?

GUTFELD: It's the testosterone summit. I mean, to the media, it's the equivalent of Hitler and Stalin divvying up Poland. See those two guys in the room, and they go, "Oh, my God. We need a beta male in there as soon as possible."


GUTFELD: Anyway, Israel is really, like, a mini-America stuck in the world's most unstable arena, and yet it -- somehow, it's safe. And that's because they accept the factual reality over emotions. Everybody knows the enemy, and they know how to defend themselves against it. People are in the military. They know how to use weapons. That's important.

And get this: Muslims actually like working and living in Israel. If you ask, probably, a Muslim where would you rather live, Yemen or Israel? Where would you like your family to relocate? They say Israel in no time.

PERINO: Well, they might say Israel privately but publicly...

GUTFELD: Publicly, they'll say, Libya.

GUILFOYLE: Because why? They want to be safe.

BOLLING: Publicly, they'd be like, "What Israel?"

PERINO: Because there is no such place.

GUILFOYLE: they want to be safe and...

PERINO: Kimberly, last word on this.

GUILFOYLE: You know, I think if you're the Palestinians, you're very worried, because they have really enjoyed, over the years, a tremendous amount of money, U.S. taxpayer money, coming their way from previous administrations. And they have to be a little bit concerned.

Because what I saw there was a little bit of a nice bromance. Meaning they respect each other. Netanyahu was quite complementary to President Trump. Making it clear Israel had no better friend, had not been supported like they feel they're being supported by President Trump. And he also, verbally and rhetorically, reciprocated that level of trust and support and loyalty.

This, I think, was a very favorable day for the administration in terms of those two world leaders that are very important and Israel, no greater ally, an important ally in that region to help maintain stability in that geopolitical arena. So I think this was definitely a step in the right direction.

WILLIAMS: One last point is that the CIA director, Mike Pompeo, was over, talking to Abbas today. So I think that we're going to see more from that.

PERINO: Great. All right. Well, that's positive.

All right. Ahead, the media is working overtime to hold President Obama -- excuse me -- President Trump...


PERINO: ... and his administration accountable. Did they do that for Obama? Greg explores the reemergence of the aggressive press following President Obama's departure. That's next.


GUTFELD: It's been a month, and Trump's cabinet is like a rundown Red Roof Inn: lots of vacancies. You can thank the Democrats, who are acting as roadblocks.

Now, you'd expect the media to chide such obstructionism the way they did for President Obama. If you recall, reporters clutched their pearls over attacks on poor Obama when just a few of his appointees dropped out. I know. I'm tired of the "if this were Obama" line, but we're only tired of it because it's true.

Look at Flynn. It's no Benghazi, IRS, or email scandal. He didn't lie to the American people about keeping their doctor. Yet, you've got a pack of dogs nipping at President Trump's heels, a pack who were silent during Obama's worst. It's adorable watching reporters freak out now after eight years of hiding under their bunk beds:


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN: Congressman, there is zero chance that we're going to move on until the answers to the questions that present itself at least get notice from the White House.

CHUCK TODD, NBC NEWS: Welcome to day one of what is arguably the biggest presidential scandal involving a foreign government since Iran-Contra.

THOMAS FRIEDMAN, NEW YORK TIMES: We have never taken it seriously from the very beginning: Russia hacked our election. That was a 9/11-scale event. They attacked the core of our very democracy. That was a Pearl Harbor-scale event.


GUTFELD: Wait, how many people died from this Russian thing, you dope?

So as they get help from Obama's deep-state loyalists, who leak away, the media keeps asking when did Trump know it? That was never asked of Obama, who blamed a terror attack on a video, launched a massive boondoggle he knew was based on a lie and backed a Cabinet member who treated e-mails as badly as her husband treated females.

For eight years, the media accepted that the world's smartest guy do absolutely nothing. Now they hate President Trump as much as they loved President Gump.

Are you amazed, Kimberly, how excited the media is over this? I can hear the -- their jaws just, like, salivating.

GUILFOYLE: They're dripping.


GUILFOYLE: Their mouths watering.

GUTFELD: Like I am in a McDonald's.

GUILFOYLE: OK. Thank God it was McDonald's.

Yes, I mean, but this is really no surprise. Right? I mean, this is unbelievable, and I watched the whole Tucker thing with Eric Wemple last night, "The Washington Post." I mean, wow. How embarrassing. He should go crawl in, like, a corner and stick his head in the hole. And he had all the facts, all the information, everything laid out.

And that's what you need to do. You need to confront them on the facts, on the hypocrisy, on the fact that they tried to politicize and just play for one team instead of, in fact, doing their job and covering the stories adequately and evenly.

GUTFELD: Yes, Juan, that's the thing. I wouldn't be so, like -- I wouldn't be mocking the press the way I do if they had been like this for - - for eight years or 12 years. It's just happening now they're so assertive.

WILLIAMS: Really? You think that they didn't go after Hillary Clinton's emails?

GUTFELD: Not -- not the way they should have.

WILLIAMS: Oh, I think New York Times broke the story. I think they were pretty aggressive. I think boy...

GUTFELD: That was one -- that was one outlet.

WILLIAMS: If you talk to the Clinton people, I think we did it I think The Washington Post. I think every -- Wall Street, everybody was on it, and they're not happy with it.

Today was an interesting day, because I think you have so much going on. You have the labor -- the nominee for labor secretary pulling out.


WILLIAMS: And then you have, you know, you stop and think about this whole now Office of Ethics saying, "We should do some kind of investigation into Kellyanne Conway." You keep going now with the Republicans looking into the Russia thing. I think that GUILFOYLE: they're having some trouble.

GUTFELD: Or it's a shark feed, Eric.

BOLLING: Sharks. And you said jaws of whatever you said the draws. That was the thing. You need the "Jaws" music. Because that's what they did. They got one scalp, they got one head. They're looking for more.


BOLLING: They've got Flynn. Now they may have gotten Puzder. I guess you can give credit to them with that. I'm not sure about that one.

But then they're looking for more. And they're going to continue to go for more.

But again, so General Flynn resigns. No one dies. Now, I know there are certain people on the left and maybe in this building that say if you bring up Benghazi, shake your hands, because you're doing a show. Jazz hands, one person tells me to do it. But Benghazi, people died; Americans died.

And then they sent Susan Rice out, knowing they were doing -- they were lying to the America public knowingly, willingly...

GUILFOYLE: Pushing the video.

BOLLING: ... pushing the video knowingly. And yet, people died; and no one was fired for it. And no one was -- you didn't see Chuck Todd saying this is the biggest thing since Iran-Contra. But he is with this, because I think they do, as Kimberly points out, they smell blood and they want more.

GUTFELD: Dana, could this story be the biggest scandal of all time? Pearl Harbor, 9/11...

BOLLING: Benghazi.

GUTFELD: ... Benghazi, Iran-Contra all put together?



PERINO: No, of course not. I've always felt Republicans, conservatives, because of this tendency for bias, that they have to try harder.

GUTFELD: Harder. Yes, that's true.

PERINO: Stop throwing blood in the water.

GUTFELD: Yes, that's true. You've got to learn. Not so much chum. Be a chum.

All right. Ahead -- don't be chum, be a chum. That's a -- on a T-shirt waiting to happen, Kimberly.

GUILFOYLE: Oh, my God. Look at someone else.

GUTFELD: I won't. I'm still looking.

A Russian ship sailing close to our East Coast, what could this mean for Kimberly? Could this be World War III, Kimberly? More on that next.


WILLIAMS: Welcome back. We want to turn now to some concerning acts of aggression by Russia. Three major provocations in just the last week. Russian jets buzzed a U.S. Navy destroyer in the Black Sea. The country also deployed a cruise missile, in violation of an arms-control treaty. And now it has a spy ship armed with surface-to-air missiles patrolling just miles our East Coast. So will the Trump administration the responding?

Earlier the president tweeted about his predecessor's Russia policy, writing, quote, "Crimea was taken by Russia during the Obama administration. Was Obama too soft on Russia?"

What do you say, Eric?

BOLLING: Well, they did respond. They said, "We are aware of the vessel's presence. It's not entered the U.S. territorial waters. We respect the freedom of navigation exercise by all nations beyond territorial sea." In other words, they didn't venture into U.S. waters.

It is provocative. I would hope that someone from the administration would say, "Look, this is not the time to be -- to be rattling our door over here. We're dealing with a lot of Russian influence things going on."

WILLIAMS: Maybe that's exactly the time.

BOLLING: "Say hello to Cuba. Park in Cuba for a while."

WILLIAMS: So Dana, Paul Ryan has now said that, to ensure that there is no misunderstanding, Congress is willing to codify the sanctions that were put in place against Russia. Is that a good move by Ryan?

PERINO: Well, it depends on what the facts are. Yes, it could be. It depends also on what President Trump wants to do. And I think, you know, Rex Tillerson, the secretary of state, has only been on the job for a week. So let's give him half a minute to decide what he thinks the best posture is, and also General Mattis. I think that his influence will be really important.

And now you need to get General Harward into place as the national security advisor. So there's a lot left to be decided.

The other thing is, on the Russia ship that's off the coast, that's an easy one for President Trump to be able to push back on the Russians and make it look like he's being tough. So it could work in his favor.

WILLIAMS: I hope -- well, the question is, you know, Greg, does he want to?

GUTFELD: I don't know. So they're 40 miles offshore on the East Coast. If it were a Mexican spy ship, the Dems would declare Connecticut a sanctuary city and open up -- open up the wharf.

The Russians -- the Russians really are...

GUILFOYLE: The wharf?

GUTFELD: The wharf. The Russians really are the Bart Simpson...

GUILFOYLE: Oh, my god. You mean like Fisherman's Wharf?

GUTFELD: Yes, I love Fisherman's Wharf.

GUILFOYLE: Isn't it great?

GUTFELD: It's got the best stuff. But no, Russia is the Bart Simpson of countries. You've got to ground him, like, once a year. And I think it would be weird -- it would be weird if there wasn't a Russian spy ship off your coast, because that -- there were, like, seven -- seven or eight instances, maybe more, in the last decade of them just kind of going around, doing their thing. Also, they were probably looking for "Kimberly's Food Court."

GUILFOYLE: They want to, you know, franchise it in Russia.

GUTFELD: Exactly. I'm not worried.

WILLIAMS: You're not worried?


WILLIAMS: You don't mind these Russians...

BOLLING: Do you think we have a spy ship anywhere near Russia?

WILLIAMS: OH, yes...

BOLLING: A couple miles out. A couple miles out.

WILLIAMS: Well, the statement, Kimberly, from the Defense Department saying we respect international waters. But we haven't seen this recently. We have not seen the Russians going up and down the coast like this. They're near...

GUTFELD: Subs going around.

BOLLING: We have 12 examples in the last two or three years.

GUTFELD: They go to Havana.

WILLIAMS: Well, yes, they go to Havana. But now -- and right now, they're near Connecticut.

BOLLING: Along the East Coast.

WILLIAMS: Yes. That's the difference.

BOLLING: Other examples along the East Coast.

GUILFOYLE: Can I tell you, this plays right into what President Trump was talking about. You know, during the campaign, his promise to really fortify and strengthen our armed forces, to be able to help rebuild our Navy and other armed services divisions, because they are -- vastly been depleted under the Obama administration. And they need newer equipment, better planes and better warships. Better supplies to be able to do their job. And so he can say, "Listen. This is what we were left with. And now we need to rebuild."

WILLIAMS: You don't think they might get away with stuff now that Trump's there?

GUILFOYLE: Do I think the Russians think they're going to get away with stuff?




BOLLING: I hope we do -- do something, as Dana points out. Because we can't get all outraged when the Iranians buzz one of our ships or they bring, you know, some of those little scary little boats that go around our aircraft carriers. And we lose our minds over the Iranians and the Russians. I think we have to have the same policy with the Russians.

WILLIAMS: All right.

GUILFOYLE: Absolutely.

WILLIAMS: Well, hang around, because "One More Thing" is up next.


GUILFOYLE: It's time for "One More Thing" -- Juan.

WILLIAMS: Well, you know, today we have all been talking about what's going on inside the White House. No need to wonder anymore. You can go find out for yourself, because after a longer than usual hiatus between administrations, first lady Melania Trump announced the White House is reopening tours starting March 7. Gee, imagine if Mrs. Obama had held out for this long.

GUILFOYLE: Oh, my God.

WILLIAMS: Allowing visitors to see the White House is a tradition that dates back to 18 oh five and President Jefferson. Much simpler than people think, by the way. All you have to do is send in a tour request to your congressional representative.

But if you're hoping to catch a glimpse of the first family, you might want to hold off for a little bit, because remember, Mrs. Trump is still living here in Manhattan for now with her son, Barron.

BOLLING: Obama closed the White House tours.

WILLIAMS: Closed them?

BOLLING: He did.

WILLIAMS: No, that was during the budget crisis.

BOLLING: He shut them down for a very long time.

WILLIAMS: No, no, no.

BOLLING: Far longer than...

WILLIAMS: You're missing the -- OK.

GUILFOYLE: And why are you throwing Melania and cute little Barron shade?

WILLIAMS: I wasn't.

GUILFOYLE: I believe you were.

GUTFELD: I would like to go on a tour of the big house. Not the White House.


WILLIAMS: The big house?

GUTFELD: the big house.

GUILFOYLE: Greg. We can send you to the big house.

GUTFELD: I would like to go.

Let's look at this.


GUTFELD: Greg's Secrets to Happiness.


GUTFELD: You know, sometimes you're trying to find something in your life, and you don't see that it might right -- be right in front of you? What's wrong with me?




GUTFELD: Looks like -- he's chasing a snowball, unaware that there is snow all around him. Unfortunately, he can't get there and so he's stuck. And so he has to go back, and then he throws the snowball again. And yet, he is unaware that there is snow all around, and he gets trapped. You know, he was trapped for 24 hours.

GUILFOYLE: Because he thought it was a ball.


WILLIAMS: I like the sweater. Cool sweater.

GUTFELD: Anyway.

GUILFOYLE: Very cute.

PERINO: Continuing on the dog theme.


PERINO: So you might -- you probably saw Rumor, the German Shepard, won best in show at Westminster. There she is. She was on Shepard Smith today, as well. Maybe other places. Lots of media.

When I was there Monday night for the show, the herding group went through. She won, and the crowd went wild. And I thought, OK, she's a crowd favorite; she's going to win.

But who were the runners-up? Let me just show them to you real quick. The Irish Setter; that's Adrian.

GUILFOYLE: Gorgeous.

PERINO: I love an Irish Setter. It's beautiful. Norwegian Elkhound. There's Duffy. And that woman has been a handler for many years.

This is the Pekingese known as Chucky.

GUILFOYLE: Oh, my God.

GUTFELD: Look at that.

PERINO: A miniature poodle named Aston.

GUTFELD: Look at that.

PERINO: A boxer known as Devlin. I love that. And a Norwich Terrier known as Tanner. So congratulations to all the dogs.

GUTFELD: I just look at the legs.

GUILFOYLE: Eww, what?

BOLLING: So very quickly, can I get Adrienne to put our dog, Freedom, put him out of the room? I don't want him to see this.

There is Rumor. I ran up to Shepard's studio right after and took a picture with him. What a beautiful, beautiful dog. Love that dog.

OK. So...

GUILFOYLE: Nice shot.

BOLLING: ... yesterday was Valentine's Day. A day of love. There was so much love going around yesterday. Couldn't keep it in one day. It spilled into today. Take, for example, this man from Hollywood and this man from the political establishment who could not keep their love of each other a secret any longer, with the cameras rolling. This happened.


SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I also want to thank Elise and Ashton. Ashton, you were better looking in the movies.


MCCAIN: Anyway. I want to...


BOLLING: Oh, so cute. Happy Valentine's Day, you guys.

GUILFOYLE: A lot of love there. Right? It was like the Hollywood scene.

OK. And how about this love? Because it was an incredible little birthday party for a little boy at one of the Oroville Dam evacuation centers in California. He almost didn't get to celebrate his third birthday on Monday, but thanks to some amazing California Highway Patrol officers, he did. A group of officers pitched in and got the boy a Baskin Robbins chocolate ice-cream cake, a balloon, Captain America action figure; and then they sang happy birthday to him. Really a wonderful story.

And once again, we say -- right? -- God bless the men and women that serve us. And what they did was really nice at this shelter. All right?

Isn't that sweet?

GUTFELD: Very nice.

WILLIAMS: Happy birthday.

GUILFOYLE: Thank you, Juan. A little baby.

Set your DVR so you never miss an episode of this fabulous show. That's it for us. "Special Report" is next.

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