Rep. Hurd on Syria: Assad needs to go; Club for Growth targets moderate Republicans

On 'The First 100 Days,' the congressman says the administration's attack on Syria was the 'right move'


This is a rush transcript from "The First 100 Days," April 10, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SANDRA SMITH, GUEST HOST: Breaking tonight, on day 81 of "The First 100."


SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The sight of people being gassed and blown away by barrel bombs ensures that if we see this kind of action again, we hold open the possibility of future action.


SMITH: The White House making it clear that United States is leaving the door open to more military action against Assad's regime in Syria.

Good evening, everyone. I'm Sandra Smith in for Martha MacCallum on "The First 100 Days."

Just days after the U.S. launched 59 tomahawk missiles at a Syrian airbase, we're getting conflicting reports tonight about who knew what and when. One senior U.S. official telling the associated press that the Russians knew about the deadly and horrific chemical attack before it happened.

Tonight, our own John Roberts is reporting, the White House is staying as far away from that as possible. As those reports surfaced, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani are joining up, joining to condemned the U.S. airstrikes, even going so far as to say they will respond with force if more red lines are crossed in Syria.

Despite the backing of those two world leaders, there are growing calls tonight from the wider international community for Assad to be removed from power by any means necessary. All this setting the stage for a dramatic visit to Russia by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in less than 48 hours. In just moments, Congressman Will Hurd who sits on the House Intel Committee will join us.

But we begin with Chief Washington Correspondent James Rosen live at the State Department. James?

JAMES ROSEN, CNN CHIEF WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Sandra, good evening. With Secretary of State Tillerson soon to arrive in Moscow for his first trip there as America's top diplomat, allies of Syria President Bashar al- Assad including the Russians, the Iranians and the terror group, Hezbollah, have released a rare joint statement warning Washington that Thursday's U.S. airstrike on a Syrian airbase "oversteps all red lines. We will react firmly to any aggression against Syria and to any infringement of red lines.

The U.S. knows very well the group added somewhat ominously, our ability to react. Ahead, Secretary Tillerson's G7 meetings in Italy today. The Russian embassy in London tweeted Sunday morning and I quote, "If G7 ultimatum to Russia brings us to real war, what is your trust in Donald Trump as a wartime leader?" And the British foreign secretary Boris Johnson as his lieutenant. Then this morning, the same Russian embassy in London tweeted "The right time to watch Doctor Strange love by the great Stanley Kubrick."

The post included this iconic image taken from the Cold War era cinema classic of a nuclear bomb hurtling towards its target.


REP. TOM MCCLINTOCK, R-CALIF.: Yes, I'm a little concerned that things are moving a little too much back toward the Cold War, but it certainly puts to light any suggestion that somehow President Trump is Vladimir Putin's patsy.


ROSEN: The White House said Thursday's airstrikes had destroyed more than 20 percent of Bashar al-Assad's fixed-wing aircraft. And the White House dismissed Russia claims that the U.S. had with that's strike moved the world closer to a real war in the Mideast.


SPICER: If you look at who's not with us, it's a pretty small group. Not a group that too many people are looking to bring on board. I mean, you've got Iran, Syria, North Korea, and Russia on one side of this. That's a pretty small group.


ROSEN: And an update to what you were discussing at the top of the show, Sandra, about these claims that the Russians had advanced knowledge of this chemical weapons attack last week, a senior Trump administration official e-mailed me just moments ago to say, "At this time, there is no U.S. intelligence community consensus that Russia had foreknowledge of the Syrian chemical attack. Sandra?

SMITH: All right. We'll stay on that. James Rosen, thank you.

ROSEN: You bet.

SMITH: Here now, Congressman Will Hurd who sits on the House Intelligence Committee and as a former CIA agent. Congressman, good to see you, thanks for being here tonight. I'll ask you the question that many Americans are probably wondering, watching this news around the globe. It seems like constantly, especially in the last week. Is the world on the brink of a massive war?

REP. WILL HURD, R-TEXAS: I don't think we're there yet. I do believe President Trump's attack on Syria last week was the right move. Bashar al-Assad, in my opinion, needs to go. We have a refugee crisis because of Assad. It was because of Assad and his civil war that created the space for ISIS to come in. Assad is the problem and the fact that you have the Russians that are willing to side with Hezbollah, to me, is absolutely outrageous. And Rex Tillerson, Secretary Tillerson is going to have his hands full in the diplomatic negotiation.

But what I think what people are seeing is that President Trump is willing to use all tools of national power and men at his disposal. That's diplomatic effort, intelligence effort, it's military effort, and economic leverage as well. And that this is - this is a new day when it comes to U.S. foreign policy.

SMITH: Should that be the ultimate goal of this administration, to force Assad to go?

HURD: I think so. Because you cannot completely get rid of ISIS if Assad is still there. Assad is, you know, we need some political stability in Syria to prevent any kind of terrorist group from training and equipping themselves in Syria and coming to attack us or attack our friends. And Bashar al-Assad will never be able to create that stability. Now, people are going to say, well, who's next? And there's not a Syrian George Washington, but we know that Assad is willing to use chemical weapons against his own people. He's done it on more than a dozen occasions over the last year and a half, and the system one that we can't stand. And we have to make the Russians see that Bashar al-Assad is a problem to them as well.

SMITH: So, what does the next steps look like? I mean, you just heard Sean Spicer speaking at the White House earlier today. Basically leaving the door open for more military action. Do we see continued action? What do the next few days and weeks look like?

HURD: I would say that the Trump administration's position and strategy is evolving, and I think that is a good thing. What we have to see is I think we can build an international coalition against the Russians and against the Iranians. The fact that the Russians and Iranians and Hezbollah are willing to do a joint statement together is - put - makes them complicit with the Syrian President using chemical weapons. And that is a violation of a number of treaties, and we can even possibly see the U.N. act and enforce the Russians to veto a Security Council measure that is about them. That is one effort that we can start working on building an international coalition in order to put pressure on the Russians. I think also we have some economic tools that we can use when it comes to impacting the Russians' --

SMITH: like what?

HURD: -- energy sector. Let's add some additional sanctions against the Russian energy sector. Russia makes its money from oil but it gets his political from natural gas. And if they are condoning and supporting the use of chemical weapons in warfare against a country's own population, then we should use that tool as well to put the continued pressure on Russia.

SMITH: But bottom line, you say Assad must go. Congressman Hurd, good of you to be on tonight. Thank you.

HURD: Thank you.

SMITH: All right. Well, several heavy-hitters from the Trump administration went on the Sunday shows to talk about the path forward with regard to Assad. Watch.


REX TILLERSON, SECRETARY OF STATE: I think the issue of how Bashar al-Assad's leadership is sustained or how he departs is something that we will be working with allies and others in the coalition.

NIKKI HALEY, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: There is not any sort of option where a political solution is going to happen with Assad at the head of the regime.

H.R. MCMASTER, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: We're not saying that we are the ones who are going to affect that change. What we're saying is other countries have to ask themselves some hard questions. Russia should ask themselves, "What are we doing here? Why are we supporting this murderous regime that is committing mass murder of its own population?


SMITH: OK. Here now, Pete Hoekstra, former House Intel Committee Chairman and former Trump campaign national security advisor, and Zac Petkanas, a senior DNC advisor who runs its Trump war room.

Congressman Hoekstra, I'll start with you first. You just heard from some of the heavy-hitters, Tillerson, Nikki Haley, no political solution with Assad in power. You heard what they had to say. Your thoughts, sir?

PETE HOEKSTRA, FORMER HOUSE INTEL CHAIRMAN: Well, I think this is at a time where the President clearly has to develop a strategy with his team but it's also a time where the President has to reach out to Congress and hopefully develop a long-term bipartisan agreement on how we are going to approach Syria but also how were going to deal with Libya, how we're going to deal with Libya, how we're going to deal with Egypt, and how we're going to deal with a post ISIS-Iraq? These problems developed over a period of almost a decade, and now, is the time to develop a long-term strategy because we need a bipartisan strategy. This problem is not going to be solved very quickly.

I'm very concerned about a movement to as your previous guest was talking about, removing Assad because we have to figure out what we're going to do; getting rid of Gadhafi was not a good idea; getting rid of Mubarak in Egypt was not a good idea. And we've seen what the aftermath of those decisions has been, it's been chaos in the Middle East and Northern Africa.

SMITH: Zac and Ed, it still is. Do you agree with what you just heard? The Congressman was just referring to Congressman Hurd earlier, removing Assad should be the ultimate goal. As you just heard coming from the White House, Nikki Haley making it very clear, there can be no political solution without removing him first.

ZAC PETKANAS, SENIOR DNC ADVISER: Well, that's what Nikki Haley is saying, but on a different Sunday show, Rex Tillerson was saying that that is not the position of the United States to remove Bashar al-Assad. I personally believe that it is. It should be the policy of the United States to remove him, whether that is through political or economic pressure as well as limited military engagement. But I agree with Congressman Hoekstra. The next step needs to be presenting a strategy to Congress as well as an authorization for the use of military force, something that Donald Trump himself called for in 2013, and I think he should follow his own advice and do that.

SMITH: Congressman Hoekstra, what happens with this meeting, Rex Tillerson, the Secretary of State going to meet with Russian officials heading to Moscow this week? We understand he will not be meeting with Vladimir Putin. Right now, that's not on the docket. We don't know why. And that has not been revealed by the Kremlin. But what conversations will take place, what progress will be made made?

HOEKSTRA: Well, it's hard to say exactly what progress will be made but at least we'll be talking about the important issues that need to be confronted, and that is what does happen with Assad? Because you're not going to do anything in Syria without at least some cooperation or recognition that Russia is going to be in agreement with that, so these discussions will take place. It's going to take a period of time, I think, to work through these issues with the Russians, but it's absolutely important that we have a dialogue with the Russians, we planted a stake in the ground that said, "The use of chemical weapons and some of these other activities by Assad are totally unacceptable."

Russia now has a clear understanding of where America is positioning itself. So, actually now, hopefully, you can begin those negotiations. They'll be extremely tough to work through and reach an agreement.

SMITH: And Zac, at the same time, you have to wonder what message we're sending to other world leaders, notably North Korea by the actions that we are taking right now.

PETKANAS: No, that's exactly right. And just to follow-up on what Congressman Hoekstra was saying, I think it'll be really interesting to watch that meeting with the Russians because this administration has not had a very aggressive stance for Russia up to this point. In fact, the only policy changes they've made toward Russia is removing sanctions on the Russian spy agency.

And so, if the administration decides to get -- do some heavy politics with Russia, that'll be a complete 180 change.

SMITH: And many say that is evolving quickly. All right. Thanks to both of you for being here tonight.

PETKANAS: Thank you.

HOEKSTRA: All right. Thank you.

SMITH: Also tonight, Syria just one of the many international crises facing the Trump administration. So, where does that leave America first? Chris Stirewalt explains next.

Plus, the Obama White House engineered a deal to get chemical weapons out of Syria will, and we saw last week how that ended up. So, can the same teams Iran deal be trusted? Charlie Her and Richard Fowler will be here to debate that.

And a major victory for the Trump administration as the President's pick for the Supreme Court is sworn in. Judge Andrew Napolitano is here to tell us the most significant cases he will review in just weeks.


TRUMP: I have no doubt you will go down as one of the truly great justices in the history of the United States Supreme Court.



SMITH: Breaking tonight, the escalating crisis in Syria is just one of the many international issues confronting the Trump administration, as he is still not even at 100 days in the White House. Major incidents recently in Egypt, Sweden and saber-rattling from North Korea had hit President Trump with foreign policy challenges that threaten to move him off his "America first" campaign slogan. Trace Gallagher has the latest live from our west coast newsroom. Hey, Trace.

TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CHANNEL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Sandra. Funerals are now underway for the victims of the twin bombings targeting Christian churches in Egypt. We should warn you the pictures are very graphic. One bomb that killed 28 in the northern city of Tanta, it was placed under a seat in the main prayer hall, where in the blink of an eye, on the first day of Holy Week, hymns and prayers became screams and cries.

Minutes later, 17 more were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up outside of Coptic Church in Alexandria. The bombings which ISIS claimed responsibility for, also left more than 100 wounded. Egypt is now under a state of emergency meant to give investigators the tools they need to root out ISIS, though, many believe raising the alert level will only result in restricting the rights of law-abiding Egyptians.

President Trump has condemned the attacks and is confident that Egyptian President, Fattah el-Sisi, will fight to protect all Egyptians including Christians who were often persecuted. Mr. Trump also reached out to the Prime Minister of Sweden to condemn Friday's truck attack in Stockholm, in a shopping district fair that killed four and wounded 14. The attacker has now been identified as a 39-year-old Uzbek man, who applied for asylum in Sweden but was turned down because he was considered a security risk. The suspect, a Sunni Muslim also showed interest in extreme militant groups. He was ordered to leave Sweden but clearly managed to evade authorities.

And it now appears the last week's U.S. attack on the Syrian airbase has done very little to convince North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un to give up his missile and nuclear weapons program. In fact, some experts believe Kim, the younger, may push for the weapons to be expanded, putting the Korean Peninsula, quote, "Near the tipping point." And with tensions rising, a group of U.S. military vessels led by the super aircraft carrier, USS Carl Vinson, is now steaming toward the waters off the Korean Peninsula. U.S. fighter jets have been flying in that region for several months. Sandra?

SMITH: All right. Trace Gallagher, thank you. Joining me now, Chris Stirewalt, Fox News politics editor. Chris, good to see you. Here we are, 81 days in. With what we are witnessing around the world, what happens with "America first"? What the president campaigned on and promised?

CHRIS STIREWALT, FOX NEWS POLITICS EDITOR: Well, one of the secrets in good slogan making is to make sure that it can stretch to fit. It's like a blanket, it's like a big enough blanket for your bed that'll cover all the corners. And America first can mean different things to different heroes. Just like making America great again. President Trump, when he was running for office and before his official campaign, was a relentless critic of people who supported President Obama in interventions overseas, who called for him to intervene.

Now we see him in a very different light. He has clean house to a pretty substantial degree in his administration of people who were part of a -- isolationist is too harsh of a term but anti-interventionist, at least, as we see Steve Bannon off the National Security Council. We see K.T. McFarland moving off of the National Security Council. We see a change of forces over there, and we see that moving to a more traditional dare I say a establishment, foreign policy approach.

SMITH: So, fair enough, that's the way the L.A. Times put it in this piece calling it a "pivotal week," where Trump relies on D.C establishment. The realities of the office are nudging the president beyond his campaign bluster. So, it makes you wonder, is the use of the word "evolving" being used in a positive way?

STIREWALT: Well, we will have to get out a team of sociologist to figure out what happens when this many heads explode in this many newsrooms across the country, as so many reporters and so many analysts are now saying, "Wow, President Trump handled these three things, basically, the Gorsuch nomination, the meeting with the Chinese President, and the strikes on Syria in a reasonable way." The challenge now is, there are two groups of people for whom Donald Trump has made life very difficult in the last two weeks. One group or his core supporters, the people who would be opposed to these kinds of interventions and this sort of internationalist American foreign policy. But the other group are the resist people, the #resist. "We will fight you forever. We hate you no matter what. You're not really the president." When the Washington Post sounds more supportive of Donald Trump than Breitbart News, you got a difficult job if you are Mr. #resist.

SMITH: And in the Rose Garden today, he was touting his flexibility on foreign affairs saying "I do change and I am flexible and I am proud of that flexibility. Chris Stirewalt, you sound like you have a bit of a cold. Why don't you go --


STIREWALT: It's allergies, these trees.

SMITH: You know they've got medicine for that. All right. Chris Stirewalt, always good to see you. Thank you.


SMITH: All right. Also tonight, The Washington Post Fact-Checker giving Susan Rice's recent defense of the Obama administration's chemical weapons deals in Syria its worst rating. Four Pinocchios. That failure raising new questions tonight about that same teams Iran deal. The New York Post Editorial Board asking, "Just how wrong they all were has now become dead obvious. So, why should anyone still believe the same team's assurances on Iran's ability to produce nukes?"

Joining me now, Charlie Hurt, a political columnist, The Washington Times and Richard Fowler, the senior fellow at the New Leader's Council, both are FOX News Contributors. Richard, that's a reasonable question, isn't it?

RICHARD FOWLER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: It's definitely a reasonable question, Sandra and here's my thought on this. I -- while I love the president, the former president rather, I think that we can all agree that he got Syria wrong. One, creating the red line, one at acting fast enough, two, working with the Russians to try to get rid this chemical weapon. President Obama got it wrong, but with that being said, on Iran, he got it right.

What we found out on Tuesday was -- well, last week's Tuesday -- so the U.S. Strategic Command Director said that Iran is not trying to require nuclear -- they're not trying to acquire nuclear weapon and beyond that, we actually have American companies now working with Iran, Boeing being one of them creating 18,000 jobs, developing 30 commercial jet liners for the Iranian airlines. So, this Iran deal does not only helping Americans putting them back to work but two, we know if we remain vigilant, they will not acquire a nuclear weapon.

SMITH: But Charlie, just knowing what we know now about the failures in Syria, where does that leave us with the Iran deal?

CHARLES HURT, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I mean, the key thing here is that, you know, we knew that it's the degree to which President Obama lied, and Susan Rice lied, and John Kerry lied about the status of chemical weapons in Syria. That's what's so alarming about nukes in Iran. Notwithstanding, everything that Richard just said about Iran, there is no evidence whatsoever that they are not continuing to pursue nuclear weapons, and in fact, once the 10-year window of this deal is up, they most certainly will pursue a nuclear weapon.

And what -- but as I said, you know, the thing that is most disturbing about this is the fact that there was evidence even before President Obama left office that we -- that the government, the U.S. government knew that Bashar al-Assad still had Sarin gas and other gas chemical weapons that were specifically banned and specifically part of the arrangement with the Russians to get out of his hands and they continue -- they continue to lie about it all the way up until December of last year, saying that this was somehow some great victory. So, there is no reason whatsoever for any fate that the Iran deal is somehow going to be better than what we got here.

SMITH: So, Richard, you say -- you say that -- you're admitting that President Obama got it wrong. Is this a further knock to the credibility of his presidency?

FOWLER: No, not at all. I think you're mixing apples and oranges here. I think we work with the Russians and I think one of his former -- a top person at the Obama administration who worked on this particular project said that "We thought that there might have been one or two weapons left, that clearly was the truth, so, clearly, Susan Rice, didn't get it all right. Right? But when it comes to the Iran deal, I think it's completely different, it was hashed out differently, it didn't involve -- it didn't involve the same players, it didn't involve the same actors. And to compare apples to oranges here, I think is a little bit far. It's flawed, right? Because what we know -- what we know from Iraq --


SMITH: Let me -- let me reiterate, though. The nuclear relies on the same kind of verification and accountability system entailed in the agreement with Assad. That's not too reassuring her, and that is simply what The New York Post Editorial board is pointing out.

HURT: And what's so disturbing about this is that the deal that the Obama administration made with the Assad regime with the help of the Russians was -- the reason that they did that in that manner was because they so badly didn't want to take off, and when Assad clearly cross a red line and we did not react to that red -- his crossing that red line, it was because they wanted to preserve this Iran deal. Everything that went into that Iran -- they sacrificed everything in order to get that Iran deal, and that's not a good way to negotiate.

SMITH: All right. Charlie, Richard, we got to leave it there.

FOWLER: It's supposedly a good deal, Sandra. Because it's - because it's a good deal.

SMITH: All right. All right. We'll see about that. Thanks for both of you. We got to leave it there.

Coming up, we shift our focus back to the home front as we close in on the 100-day-mark of the Trump presidency. Reports tonight, suggesting a White House hard at work in defining the early stages of Mr. Trump's presidency. Karl Rove is here with how best to shape the narrative.

Plus, perhaps the most consequential moment of the president's first 11 weeks happening today, as Neil Gorsuch has sworn in for his seat on the Supreme Court. So what are the most significant cases now, just as Gorsuch could weigh in on the first? Judge Napolitano is here to break them all down, the most important ones that matter to you.

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Just as Gorsuch, you are now entrusted with the sacred duty of defending our constitution.



NEIL GORSUCH, SUPREME COURT JUSTICE: The American people, I am humbled by the trust placed in me today. I will never forget that to whom much is given, much will be expected.


SMITH: It was a celebratory mood in the Rose Garden today as President Trump's pick for the Supreme Court was sworn in. Judge Neil Gorsuch's becoming just as Neil Gorsuch's this morning and although it has been somewhat overshadowed by recent events, the seat on the high court marked a major compliment for the Trump administration, marking the fulfillment of the very important campaign pledge that rallied much of the conservative base. Peter Doocy is live for us tonight outside of the Supreme Court. Peter.

PETER DOOCY, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Sandra, President Trump courted conservative voters by saying that he put somebody on the Supreme Court here behind us that they would be proud of and today, it happened and President Trump is now talking with a lot of pride about the speed that it all happened with.


TRUMP: I got it done in the first 100 days that is even nice. You think that is easy?


DOOCY: This swearing in would not have been today if it wasn't for the Republican-controlled senate voting to change a long-standing president using the so-called nuclear option to get Gorsuch through with a simple majority instead of 60 votes. President Trump thanks majority leader Mitch McConnell for all he did to make today possible. The newest Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch thanked McConnell as well.


GORSUCH: I want to thank to Senator McConnell and Senator Grassley in there excellent teams for the support and leadership. And I must think my former law clerks and my dear friends who gave so much of themselves so selfishly through these last three months. You are dear to me.


DOOCY: Gorsuch was once a clerk himself for fellow justice and the judicial oath in the rose garden today at the Supreme Court earlier. Chief Justice Roberts gave Gorsuch a separate oath to support and defend the constitution and the each ceremony where the widow and son of the late Antonin Scalia watching Gorsuch officially fill the seat he vacated 14 months ago when he passed away, Sandra.

SMITH: It was quite a moment today. All right Peter Doocy, thank you. The Supreme Court once again with a full bench of nine justices now prepares to get to work on the next round of cases in the coming weeks. So what should our newest justice be prepared to get weighed in? Here now to discuss Judge Andrew Napolitano Fox news senior judicial analyst, judge good to see you.


SMITH: You made is very simple for everybody, you pick four cases of the 13 remaining this term to focus on, because you think they're the ones that matter to the American people.

NAPOLITANO: Yes, I think the one that matters most to the American people is one out of nursery and this addressed whether or not the state can give money to religious schools for nonreligious purposes. In most states, the answer is yes, because of the federal system the answer is yes. Missouri and a few other states have taken the position that they want a higher bar. They don't want any tax dollars going to any religious affiliated organization, even if it's for something like the safety of children in a playground. So when Missouri offered money for safety for children on playgrounds, all the schools in the state applied for it. They all got it except the religious schools. They sued them, and that will be before the Supreme Court.

SMITH: And how will he vote?

NAPOLITANO: I think it's pretty clear from the way he voted on similar cases as an appeals court judge in Colorado, he will vote yes, the money can go to the nonreligious aspects, safety of children for those schools.

SMITH: Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia versus (inaudible). Will be watching for in the California public police retirement system versus energy security, this is about class action lawsuit, the timing of them.

NAPOLITANO: This is huge. And this whether or not the public employees' -- pension system in California, which has worked hundreds of billions of dollars can blame its losses from 2008 on its bankers, and they filed too late and their argument is look, there's so many of us. So many of us were harmed, give us a break, and let us file too late. Pretty clear that Justice Gorsuch is going to say the rule is you've got to file it within six years and he didn't do it, too little too late, five to four against California.

SMITH: So expect a note from him on that. Then there is a weaver versus Massachusetts and this is about the court officer who kept the public as well as his family locked out of the courtroom.

NAPOLITANO: Can the government and try parts of a trial in secret? The answer generally is no, and I think Justice Gorsuch being the same place that Justice Scalia was on this. You can't keep -- this is a 16-year-old child, you can't keep the parents out of the courtroom and you can't keep the public out of the courtroom during any part of the trial in a matter what reason you're giving.

SMITH: Let's get to this one. With the false statements being made on applications to become an American citizen, is a lie a lie?

NAPOLITANO: This is a hard one, because the false statements had to do with a - it violate events in Bosnia before this woman came here. Had nothing to do with anything she did after she became an American citizen. She is been a model citizen but because she lied on her application to come here, I'm going to guess Justice Gorsuch right where justice Scalia would've been, a lie is a lie because congress has said that.

SMITH: The common theme there and you just said basically on every case that he would've voted on, he will vote the way Justice Scalia would've.

NAPOLITANO: I think that is true and I think the president will have much to crow for when he starts seeing those votes.

SMITH: Very interesting, Judge thank you.

NAPOLITANO: Always a pleasure.

SMITH: Good to see you. All right, still ahead, one conservative group is targeting members of the Republican Party. We will tell you who and why when a representative from club joins us. Top reports tonight that Trump administration is troubling to crack the narrative defined "The First 100 Days" of his presidency. What is the best path forward? Will get insight from a man who knows them, Mr. Karl Rove himself, former deputy chief of staff and advisor to President George W. Bush joins us next.



TRUMP: A new optimism is sweeping across our land and a new face in America is filling our hearts and lifting our sites.


SMITH: Donald Trump striking a hopeful tone during remarks earlier today, the president running against some fierce resistance in his first 100 days in office. With that marker quickly approaching, reports a swirl of the White House on edge, seriously working to craft a compelling narrative about his first weeks in office. He reportedly convinced that defining a period of true success will set up the presidency for the manner three and a half years. Here now to discuss the true White House, Karl Rove, former senior advisor and deputy chief of staff under President George Bush, goo to see you Karl, first let me ask you about the premise to this, that is essential to come up with this narrative to paint the first days in office as a success, because that defined the rest of his term. Is that true?

KARL ROVE, FORMER SENIOR ADVISOR TO PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Half true. It's important to define this period. The press is sort of stuck on 100 days, hasn't really been important really in reality since Franklin Roosevelt hundred days of legislation. But every new president gets judged for "The First 100 Days," so it's important to have a narrative, an expedition for that is but don't count on sustaining the next three and three-quarter years, that hasn't happened. That doesn't happen. You constantly have to figure out how to explain to the American people what have we just been doing and what is it that we are going to be doing in the future?

SMITH: You're a pro at this and a one White House official and political says 100 days of the marker we've essentially got two and a half weeks to turn things around. This is going to be a monumental task. I mean apparently their meeting 30 Trump staffers, piling into conference rooms, what is the path forward? Can you help them come up with a narrative?

ROVE: First of all, they've got to sit down. A nice construct, flushing it out matters but let's emphasize prosperity. What have we done to increase jobs, increase economic growth, and relieve businesses and individuals, the regulations keeping them from making more money and growing our economy? Accountability, let's talk about following through on what we said during the campaign, put in a role for lobbying, appoint a Supreme Court justice. And finally safety and security, what have we done to make America more safe and secure? It is not a bad construct. You can talk about these things all day long and believe me, inside a White House you do talk about these things a lot, but that seems to be pretty good construct, but you pointed your finger at something that is really important. In that political story and, six people out of those 30 went out and talk to the press. Three of them dissed the process and to others, there may have been to others that dissed it or maybe they were quoting some of the same three people twice and one person defended the process. Did these five people really think that they were doing the president of the United States a favor by doing this? On the quote that you had of somebody saying we've got 100 days, it's going to be monumental. Did they think they were helping President Trump out by the comments?

SMITH: Maybe that is part of the problem.

ROVE: It's amazing.

SMITH: Here's where that communications team is putting together. They're dividing this up into three categories of accomplishments, which you hinted that the way to go. They've got prosperity, such as manufacturing jobs that they can tout it, cetera. Accountability, following through the swamp training campaign as was promised, and safety security, what do you think, are they on the right path?

ROVE: There are dozen different ways to cut this but you've to come up with a construct. They've come up with the construct. Now they got to flush it out, they got to explain and make it concise so people can get their hands around it so people say he is doing what he said he would do and his focus on my jobs and economy and keeping America safe. But they've got to prove it is that to be the guy who helps prove it.

SMITH: They've got to sell it to your point. One other thing I wanted to ask you about how, Fox has been reporting on this Kushner-Bannon relationship that things are apparently on edge. Bannon of course the chief strategist and the Trump campaign and Kushner, his son-in-law but also his senior advisor apparently there's some infighting that is being reported. Is there anything to this brawl that is being reported?

ROVE: You almost have to think there is because in the politico story, they quote a White House official defending Bannon and a White House official defending Kushner, and going at the other side. We've seen this constantly. Last week, I counted in one story nine people in the White House and taking back the other people in the White House. There seem to be three tribes. There is the Kushner tribe of New Yorkers and their followers, there is the Bannon neo-populist neo-nationalist of Steve Bannon and Steve Miller and their people and their followers and then there's everybody else and they take wax at each other. I don't think I've seen a White House going back at least the last five presidents in which there's been as much evident infighting that spills out into the press. These people have no loyalty to the man they serve. They're not doing him any good by doing this.

SMITH: Other reporting reveals that they get along, they just have differences philosophically.

ROVE: Fine and you want that, you want that. You want disagreements over policy, but you want that unity of purpose that keeps us from spilling into the papers and into the media with stories of how those other guys are complete idiots and where the only crew true keepers of the Trump plan. Where the only competent people around, I mean none of that serves the president.

SMITH: Back to your point, it's about controlling that narrative. Karl Rove thanks for being here.

ROVE: You bet.

SMITH: Still to come, the frantic search for a fugitive who is believed to be armed and dangerous and mailed 161 antigovernment manifesto threatening law enforcement and the president himself. Plus the conservative club for growth has been spending some serious cash to take on house Republicans including Donald Trump first congressional endorser. The club V.P. is here next, to tell us why.


SMITH: The conservative group for growth may be one of his biggest health care supporters. The group is now making a million-dollar ad by and taking aim at ten and moderate Republicans who they say are standing in the way of the GOP repeal and replace effort.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To make us great again, now he is doing what he said, working with conservatives on a better bill that lowers premiums, cuts taxes, and repeals Obamacare.

TRUMP: This is our chance to end ObamacCre and begin delivering the reforms are people deserve.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Conservatives are working to get it done, a big win for American families and our economy. Tell congress support Trumps plan to get rid of ObamaCare.

TRUMP: We've got to get it done!


SMITH: Here now, Andy Ross (ph) the vice president of government affairs, at the club for growth, spending some serious cash to take on Republicans of all people.

ANDY ROTH, VP GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS CLUB FOR GROWTH: We've got to get it done, like President Trump says. The only thing that is stopping us from repealing Obamacare are the costly regulations that Obamacare is currently imposing on the American people in, and it's translating into higher premiums. There's ten moderate Republicans, even more frankly that want to keep those regulations and what were saying in these ads is it's time to get rid of these regulations. You get rid of them, and then we can repeal Obamacare.

SMITH: And it is time for Republicans to do what they promised voters and back legislation that fulfills President Trump's pledge to repeal Obamacare and lower premiums. We mentioned at the top of the segment and, your group was once one of the fiercest critics of the president. What type of response are you getting to this point, this million-dollar ad buy?

ROTH: It's still early, but the response is very favorable and as for working in support of Trump's agenda, this is politics. Politics makes strange bedfellows. When he is right on the policy, were going to be there to support them.

SMITH: Why haven't you named all of the moderate Republicans involved here? You've named Chris Collins, named three of them. You're going to be naming the rest Thursday. Why not call them all out by name now?

ROTH: Sander, we can show you a little angle but we don't want to show you the whole leg. It is going to have to wait a couple of days.

SMITH: How do you expect them to respond? We did invite them on tonight. They're on break, a kind of tough to get a hold of anybody right now. But they will respond. What do you expect from them?

ROTH: I don't know. It's up to them. Here's the thing though, all Republicans voted for full repeal of Obamacare. They promised it during the campaign in 2012, 2014, and 2016. President Trump himself was elected on this issue for Republicans now to now say that they kind of want to keep parts of Obamacare largely intact that is going to disappoint some people. So what were basically saying is listen, do it's good for the country unless it's repeal Obamacare and repeal the regulations.

SMITH: All right your message is being heard loud and clear. We'll see with the impact of that is. We'll see what the response from some of those Republicans being called out by name by your organization, Adam Roth, thanks for being here.

ROTH: Thanks for having me.

SMITH: Up next, following the breaking news of a nationwide massive manhunt for a fugitive who is accused of stealing more than a dozen weapons and mailing and antigovernment manifesto to President Trump, the details, next.


SMITH: Breaking tonight, a nationwide manhunt for a Wisconsin man who sent a chilling 161 page manifesto to President Trump. Authorities say 32-year-old Joseph Jakubowski is armed and dangerous. He suspected of robbing on gunshot the same day that he mailed that antigovernment letter. Call police if you have any information on his whereabouts. Thank you so much for watching tonight. That is it for us spread I'm Sandra Smith and by the way, don't forget you can catch me every weekday at noon eastern time, a lot of fun. Have a good night, everyone. O'Reilly is up next.

"The O'Reilly Factor" is on tonight.

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