TRANSCRIPT

Gingrich: US has more military options than Obama thought

Former House speaker reacts on 'Hannity' to decision to drop MOAB bomb in Afghanistan

 

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," April 13, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE, GUEST HOST: This is a Fox News Alert. The U.S. military has dropped what is being called, quote, "the mother of all bombs" on an ISIS target in Afghanistan.

I'm Kimberly Guilfoyle, in for Sean tonight.

Here's President Trump earlier today reacting to the massive non-nuclear military strike.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Very, very proud of the people (INAUDIBLE) really another successful job. We're very, very proud of our military. Everybody knows exactly what happened so -- and what I do is I authorize my military. We have the greatest military in the world, and they've done the job, as usual. So we have given them total authorization, and that's what they're doing.

And frankly, that's why they've been so successful lately. If you look at what's happened over the last eight weeks and compare that to what -- really, to what's happened over the last eight years, you'll see there's a tremendous difference.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GUILFOYLE: And at the Pentagon with details on why the U.S. decided to drop this massive bomb is Jennifer Griffin -- Jennifer.

JENNIFER GRIFFIN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Kimberly, the cloud that results from this size bomb reaches 10,000 feet in the air. At 7:32 PM local time in Afghanistan, the U.S. Air Force dropped a 21,000-pound bomb known as "the mother of all bombs," or massive ordnance air blast, on what the White House described as a complex of ISIS tunnels on the border with Pakistan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: We targeted a system of tunnels and caves that ISIS fighters used to move around freely. The United States takes the fight against ISIS very seriously. And in order to defeat the group, we must deny than operational space, which we did.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GRIFFIN: The GBU44 is the largest non-nuclear weapon the U.S. military has ever used in combat. Designed for the Iraq war but never used, tested in 2003, the MOAB is a concussive GOP-guided bomb that is pushed out of the back of a modified C-130 aircraft. Its blast radius is one mile wide.

The Pentagon says the top general in Afghanistan didn't need to ask permission to conduct the strike. The target of the explosion was a series of tunnels near a Achin province in Nangarhar province 35 miles south of Jalalabad, where the U.S. has a base.

On Saturday, an American Green Beret was killed by small arms fire in that part of Nangarhar province, Staff Sergeant Mark De Alencar of Edgewood, Maryland, part of an ISIS-clearing operation. The U.S. military says the strike today was not in retaliation for the Green Beret's death.

The president announced yesterday after meeting with NATO's secretary- general at the White House that national security adviser H.R. McMaster is leaving soon for Afghanistan, and the top commander in Afghanistan, General John Nicholson, testified recently, Kimberly, that he needs several thousand more U.S. or NATO troops for Afghanistan -- Kimberly.

GUILFOYLE: All right, Jennifer, thank you.

And also tonight, tensions are rising with North Korea over a new report that says the rogue regime could be preparing to carry out a new nuclear test. A monitoring group released satellite images that shows activity at a North Korean nuclear site. President Trump is calling on China to help defuse the situation, but says if Beijing fails to act, then the U.S. and its allies will.

And outrage is growing over Syrian president Bashar al Assad's comments about last week's chemical weapons attack. He's now claiming it was fake.

In Washington with more is Leland Vittert -- Leland.

LELAND VITTERT, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kimberly, Assad is basically asking the world to believe him, rather than our lying eyes, suggesting videos like these of the dead and dying from sarin gas were faked, saying in that interview to the French wire service AFP, "Our impression is that the West, mainly the United States, is hand in glove with the terrorists." That's what Assad calls anyone he doesn't like. They" -- meaning the United States -- "fabricated the whole story in order to have a pretext for the attack."

In an exhaustive presentation, the Pentagon went as far to put out the radar track of the Syrian jet that dropped the sarin bomb, and the U.S. the secretary of state doubled down on the charge in front of Assad's Russian protectors yesterday.

So suffice it to say, nobody in Washington or anywhere else is buying Assad's denial.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARK TONER, STATE DEPARTMENT ACTING SPOKESMAN: Sadly, it's vintage Assad. It is an attempt by him to throw up false flags, create confusion. Frankly, it's a tactic we've seen on Russia's part, as well, in the past. There can be little doubt that the recent attacks and the chemical weapons attack and -- in Idlib was by the Syrian government, by the Syrian regime and that it wasn't only a violation of the laws of war but it was we believe a war crime.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VITTERT: And this creates quite a PR pickle for Vladimir Putin. As you might remember, Assad's 2013 sarin gas attack killed more than 1,400 people, crossing then president Obama's red line. Part of the grand bargain to stave off a U.S. attack was Russia's assurance they would destroy all of Assad's chemical weapons, begging the question now, Kimberly, if the Russians intentionally left Assad with a chemical arsenal or were simply hoodwinked by their own proxy.

GUILFOYLE: Leland, thank you.

And joining us now with reaction is the author of "Treason," former speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Thanks for being with us, Mr. Speaker.

NEWT GINGRICH, R-FMR. HOUSE SPEAKER, FOX CONTRIBUTOR: Delighted to be with you.

GUILFOYLE: Fantastic. So a lot of news to discuss that's been going on this past week, and especially today. Let's talk about the latest development in Afghanistan and the president's decision to drop this massive bomb. What kind of message does this send to North Korea and Syria, let alone ISIS?

GINGRICH: Well, I think, first of all, the decision to use the largest non-nuclear bomb that we have sent a clear signal of strength, building on what he did last week with Syria and is also a reminder both to the Russians and to the North Koreans that we have enormous assets if we want to use them.

I think it's very interesting. You now have with General Mattis and with General McMaster real professionals who are giving the president serious military advice, exactly the sort of thing that Barack Obama always rejected. And I think what you're finding is that when the president turns and says, What are my options, it turns out there are a lot more options than Obama ever thought there were.

GUILFOYLE: Well, it's very interesting that you bring this up, and I heard you discuss this earlier in the day, but a markedly different approach to foreign policy, to military intervention we've seen in less than the first, you know, 100 days of the president being in office.

GINGRICH: Yes, I wrote a newsletter last week at Gingrich Productions pointing out that there are a lot of parallels between President Trump succeeding the weakness of Obama and President Reagan succeeding the weakness of Jimmy Carter. And they both had decisive moments. In Reagan's case, it was shooting down two Libyan aircraft over the Gulf of Sidra, and in the president's case, it was firing Tomahawk missiles last week, by the way, while at dinner with the Chinese president.

GUILFOYLE: Right. Subtle.

GINGRICH: So I think that --

GUILFOYLE: Subtle.

GINGRICH: (INAUDIBLE) useful (ph). And by the way, somebody made a comment to me that was fascinating. They said if you want to take video of the foreign minister of Russia meeting with Hillary Clinton, meeting with John Kerry, and meeting with Rex Tillerson, it'll give you a real sense of how much real power Tillerson carries just in his bearing and his sophistication and his maturity because he's different than the other people that Lavrov has worked with. And I thought that was a fascinating commentary on what a great job Secretary Tillerson's doing for America.

GUILFOYLE: Yes, fantastic. You see a lot of kind of feedback, people saying, you know, how they thought that he did. I thought it was very strong and decisive. And he showed no hesitation in bringing up directly to Putin and the individuals there all of the issues and problems that the United States has with Russia.

Wow, this must have been quite a surprise to all the people that thought that the president was going to so chummy with Putin and not be strong with Russia.

GINGRICH: Well, look, I think if President Trump could find a way to do it, he'd like to be friends with Russia.

GUILFOYLE: Right.

GINGRICH: He doesn't -- and he doesn't have any great interest in going out of the way to start a fight, but he's not going to give an inch on things like gassing children, which I think really got to the president emotionally. And the fact is that Rex Tillerson, when he was the head of ExxonMobil had negotiated several multi-billion-dollar deals with the Russians. He knows how to deal with them. He's not afraid of them. He's not confused by them. And without being hostile, he was very direct.

GUILFOYLE: Yes. Absolutely. And you have to be firm, and now we are getting to see exactly what kind of president Mr. Trump is. And he's being very true, it seems to me, to his campaign promises and being decisive and using the strength of the American military, which he has already shown a great respect for.

So I want to segue a little bit about North Korea. You know, a new report says that North Korea could be preparing a new nuclear test. And if they do, how should President Trump respond?

GINGRICH: Well, the more fascinating question is what are the Chinese going to do?

GUILFOYLE: Yes.

GINGRICH: The Chinese have moved 150,000 troops to the North Korean border. They have changed their purchases of coal and have tightened up on sanctions against North Korea. And they have said publicly that the North Koreans had better not engage in this nuclear test.

And remember, if it's an underground facility, what we just proved in Afghanistan was we have weapons which without going nuclear -- we have huge non-nuclear conventional weapons that could take out these kind of facilities.

So I think the Chinese are trying to say to him, Look, you got to President Trump seriously. This is not like the good old days. And you better be careful.

So the first reaction ought to be, let's look at the Chinese, who, by the way, did abstain at the U.N. and President Trump was exactly right to say this was a major step in the right direction, when on the Syrian resolution, they abstained, leaving the Russians all by themselves as the only country voting no.

GUILFOYLE: Absolutely. Now, do you think that it's -- you know, we can have this kind of confidence in terms of the relationship with, you know, the president of China and President Trump working together cooperatively? Because I think people are concerned because nobody seems to be able to control North Korea and Kim Jong-un.

GINGRICH: Yes, and I'm not sure the Chinese can, either, so I don't think you can wave a magic wand.

But what was clear to me was that President Trump recommended that they go off by themselves, get away from the staff. They had a two-hour meeting the first day and another one-hour meeting the second day. And apparently, the chemistry was very good.

You may remember that Reagan did the same thing with Gorbachev when they first met.

GUILFOYLE: Yes.

GINGRICH: He said, Let's go for a walk. Let's just get out of here, just you and me and the interpreter. I think that that does lead to a different attitude, a different willingness to work. I think that's what President Trump hoped he could do with Putin, and Putin has simply been too difficult to deal with to try to have that kind of a personal conversation. But I do think there's a possibility that we're on the edge of some serious progress with China.

GUILFOYLE: Yes, absolutely. And I think you bring up such a great point because it's that interpersonal relationship, that dynamic and establishing that bond that it appears that President Trump successfully once again did with President Xi, that he can pick up the phone, call him, work cooperatively with open lines of communication. I mean, that's real leadership, and someone who's, you know, used to being an executive and making the decisions and establishing those relationships. I think we see if you agree, you know, that this is working very well for this new U.S. foreign policy with President Trump.

GINGRICH: It's a tremendous potential. It went much better at Mar-a-Lago than I thought it would, and I think that the president deserves a lot of credit. I also think, frankly, that Ivanka's children, who are studying at a school where they're learning Mandarin -- I am told that it was a very big hit in China, the video of the children singing in Mandarin. And we shouldn't underestimate that people to people sometimes breaks through, where policy arguments don't. And they may have gone home with a better feeling toward that Trump family then they thought they would have.

GUILFOYLE: Absolutely. Such a great point. I saw that video and I retweeted it. I thought it was fantastic. What an amazing way to connect with the people and make them feel welcome.

Mr. Speaker, always a pleasure. Thank you so much.

GINGRICH: Thank you. Great.

GUILFOYLE: Coming up on this busy news night, more reaction to the U.S. dropping what is described as the, quote, "mother of all bombs" on ISIS in Afghanistan. Retired brigadier general Tony Tata and Michael Waltz join us next.

And then later, the Mexican drug cartel member who is suspected of killing U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in 2010 was arrested in Mexico yesterday. We'll have a full report and get reaction from Lou Dobbs.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GUILFOYLE: Welcome back to "Hannity." Earlier today, the United States sent a big message to our enemies around the world after deploying what is called the, quote, "mother of all bombs" on an ISIS tunnel complex in eastern Afghanistan. So why is this one bomb getting so much attention?

Joining us now with reaction is the author of "The Siege," retired brigadier general Tony Tata and retired U.S. Army Special Forces officer Michael Waltz. Gentlemen, thank you for being here tonight on such an important news day.

General Tata, I'll begin witness you. Why was the mother of all bombs developed in the first place? Give us a little bit of flavor about this bomb.

BRIG. GEN. TONY TATA, U.S. ARMY (RET.): Well, Kimberly, great to be with you. The mother of all bombs replaces the daisy cutter, which was used in Vietnam to --

GUILFOYLE: Yes.

TATA: ... clear landing zones for helicopters. And this bomb explodes about six feet off the ground and sends all its energy in a 300-meter radius around.

But what's really happening here is at the bigger strategic picture, Kimberly, it's almost as if for the last eight years, the lights have been off. The Trump administration has come in and turn the lights on. There's cockroaches everywhere. And now we have to do some kind of damage control to clean this up so that our vital interests aren't threatened the way they have been when we apologize to our enemies and ignore the threats that are out there.

And I know General Mick Nicholson very well. We worked together in Afghanistan, Kimberly. And Mick -- if Mick is dropping a MOAB on a known ratline into Pakistan to kill ISIS fighters, I know for a fact that that -- it was a valid target, one that we needed to drop on and close some cave mouths and drop some tunnels on some enemy. And this is a very effective weapon because all its energy goes out and kills the personnel that you're trying to kill. It doesn't go into the ground and get dissipated into the ground.

GUILFOYLE: Yes, and apparently, we'll be able to get -- hopefully, once they declassify it and they scrub (ph) it, we'll be able to get, you know, the video of that.

So Michael, what do you think about this in terms of the presence of ISIS in Afghanistan, and you know, just so many long years hard fought there in an area that is still so troubled and problematic?

MICHAEL WALTZ, U.S. ARMY SPECIAL FORCES (RET.) (on-camera): Well, that's right, Kim. And just to add to General Tata's point, you know, over the last eight years, all anybody in the region has heard is withdrawal, withdrawal, withdrawal. And that has caused everybody, including our enemies, to wait us out and to hedge against us.

And you know, what I think we're seeing here is a completely different message, but I'm sure a lot of viewers and a lot of folks are saying, Wait a minute. This isn't what President Trump campaigned on. You know, we're going to be stuck in this forever war.

But I think we've learned now and I'm sure he is listening to his key advisers, Mattis and McMaster, that, you know, we -- we cannot turn our back on the region like we did in Iraq. We cannot have another Iraq. ISIS, al Qaeda, the Taliban will be resurgent in that part of the world, except it's going to be 10 times worse in that Pakistan, right next door, has 10 times the population and with nuclear weapons.

On a tactical level, you know, if we had not sent in the MOAB, it would taken thousands of soldiers to clear those caves. And you know, we just lost a Green Beret this last weekend. I think it was absolutely the right move. And I'm glad to see General -- excuse me, President Trump giving his generals the authority to make the right operational decisions.

GUILFOYLE: Certainly. And you know, General, this is one of those things that President Trump, you know, promised to the American people, that he was going to be a strong leader, that he was going to use the mighty weight of the U.S. military to really improve national security, you know, throughout the area because it's just been a big problem, you know, eight years of retreat.

(CROSSTALK)

TATA: ... dating all the way back to the -- the McChyrstal issue. If you remember that, you know, seven years ago or so --

GUILFOYLE: Yes.

TATA: ... Obama had such thin skin that he politicized every branch of government. We see it with the FBI today. You see it with the military and DOD. And it was so politicized, you couldn't -- you couldn't move outside of your box. And now what President Trump has done, he says, Look, you guys are the experts. You guys execute on the ground.

And I promise you, if Mick Nicholson is saying, I've got a problem here -- and this is -- this is the same ratline that Usama bin Laden used to get out of Afghanistan into Pakistan, and I can tell you it's a real issue, you know, Kimberly, that we've got ISIS inside Pakistan because that tells you that the IS from Pakistan, the Intelligence Service from Pakistan and the Pakistan government is complicit here.

And I've watched -- Mick and I have stood by each other watching grainy footage of Predators and the Pak military -- Pakistan military wave in al Qaeda and others through to attack our bases. And we know that that's happened. And now if they're -- if they're allied with ISIS, that's a huge problem on our flank in Afghanistan because, again, the mission in Afghanistan is to deny terrorists.

GUILFOYLE: Yes, absolutely, and I'm glad you brought that up because, you know, Pakistan's got to do a lot more to earn the respect...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.

GUILFOYLE: ... and support. They have been a big beneficiary by the United States in terms of assets and money that we have provided to them. And my goodness, when you see this type of thing going on, Michael, they need to get in line!

WALTZ: Well, that's right. And so General McMaster is heading out to Kabul in Afghanistan, you know, as we speak. They're in the midst of a strategy review. And I think the big change you're going to see is a much tougher line on Pakistan...

GUILFOYLE: Good!

WALTZ: ... for its support of the Taliban, the Haqqani and others. But there's another aspect to this, Kim, and another message that's being sent that's not being discussed, and that's Russia. And it ties into the meetings that we just had in the sense that Russia has now started meddling in Afghanistan again and started working with the Taliban under the kind of guise of, Well, ISIS is coming up and the Taliban and ISIS aren't getting along.

You know, what they're really trying to do is undermine NATO and undermine the United States in yet another theater. So that sends -- not only sends them a message, but it sends North Korea a message as they start to prepare for another nuclear test. So I think this -- you know, I'll you, as a military leader, I'm proud of our president.

GUILFOYLE: Yes.

WALTZ: I'm proud of our commander-in-chief. He gets it, and he understands that people in that part of the world respect strength, and we're showing it, and our diplomats...

GUILFOYLE: Absolutely!

WALTZ: ... are going to the table now with the weight of the United States military behind them.

GUILFOYLE: Now they know. Make no mistake about it! Gentlemen, thank you so much for your service and for being here with me tonight.

Coming up -- authorities have arrested a Mexican drug cartel member who is suspected of killing U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry back into 2010. We'll have all the details and get reaction from Lou Dobbs.

And later...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JEN PALMIERI, FORMER CLINTON CAMPAIGN COMMUNICATIONS DIR.: I think most journalists are probably leaning more to the left than the right. Think about the kind of person that's drawn to do this as a career.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GUILFOYLE: A former Clinton campaign staffer admits that the media has a liberal bias, but she claims that it ends up hurting Democrats. Ari Fleischer and Anthony Scaramucci will weigh in.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWSBREAK)

GUILFOYLE: This is a Fox News Alert. The Mexican drug cartel member who is suspected of killing Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in 2010 was arrested yesterday in Mexico.

Joining us now with the very latest is William La Jeunesse -- William.

WILLIAM LA JEUNESSE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Kimberly, tonight, we know more about the suspect, his alleged role in the death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, as well as his criminal history. So the arrest came around 2:00 AM Wednesday when a joint U.S.-Mexican police task force captured the suspect at a ranch in northern Mexico along the Chihuahua/Sinaloa border. The task force included Mexican marines, the DEA, and the U.S. Marshals Service. Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes was turned over to the Mexican attorney general. The U.S. is seeking extradition and he faces 30 years to life.

Arellanes is a Mexico national. We have learned he was apprehended seven times by the border patrol and arrested once for a DUI before joining the rip crew that killed Agent Terry in the desert south of Tucson in December of 2010. Terry was part of the border patrol special ops unit that took a bullet beneath his vest and died at the scene. His death exposed the Obama administration's Operation Fast and Furious after agents found two assault style weapons at the scene sold under the U.S. program. In all, the Justice Department approved the sale of some 2,000 weapons to the Mexican cartels.

Now I am told that Arellanes is tied to the scene by DNA, and according to five others who are already in prison, he fired the shot that killed Agent Terry. Kimberly, back to you.

GUILFOYLE: William, thank you.

And joining us now with reaction from the Fox Business Network, Lou Dobbs. OK, so Lou, you covered this story extensively. How big of a disaster was this Fast and Furious operation?

LOU DOBBS, FOX BUSINESS NETWORK: A disaster for the Obama administration, a disaster for the family of Brian Terry, for all Americans who care about our border security and law and order. This was a disaster for the Obama administration in retrospect now because what happens after two months of President Trump being in office? Another of Brian Terry's killers has been produced the government of Mexico. It's not accident. It took five-and-a- half years under President Obama for nothing to happen. And now suddenly they are producing the killers of Brian Terry. Justice is moving forward. And, by the way, the one suspect still at large I would wager would be caught very, very soon.

GUILFOYLE: So you think there is a direct link to President Trump being in and these accomplishments? This is one of the biggest things that he talked about as candidate Trump was border security and giving the power and the control back to the border patrol agents, protecting them so they wouldn't be penalized or prosecuted like they were under previous administrations.

DOBBS: At this time the president of the United States is supporting those who keep our borders secure and demands of Mexico that it be a responsible, mature partner in policing that border and securing it. And the Mexican government is responding. This is one example of it.

And I think you are going to see more positives like this as we go forward. Remember, how big is this? We are talking about it has taken almost seven years since Eric Holder at the attorney general of the United States lied to Congress, was cited for contempt of Congress, the only cabinet member in our history to ever be found in contempt of Congress. And we are now seeing, we hope, change that will mean partnership rather than opposition between the governments of Mexico and the United States and justice for the Brian Terry family, all border patrol agents and all Americans who care about this country and law and order.

GUILFOYLE: Absolutely. And it's almost just shocking and it is just appalling to me, a former prosecutor, that it took this long to be able to get these arrests and make this happen. But let's talk a little bit also about the president's immigration policy. We are already seeing, by the way, some are calling it Trump's the wall himself because there's been a deterrent effect and the numbers are really dramatically different than they were under President Obama in terms of people saying wait, maybe I better not come in here.

DOBBS: It's 70 percent fewer over each of the past two months. We are also seeing a president who is not afraid even as Speaker Paul Ryan says we won't be able to get funding for that this year, the president reminds Ryan who is president and says 100 percent certain we are going to have the wall. It's a change of attitude. Attorney General Jeff Sessions at the border yesterday saying this is the era of Trump and we will prosecute document fraud as felonies. We will prosecute criminal illegal aliens, and we will send them, deport them to wherever they come from.

GUILFOYLE: It's a great point about Jeff Sessions. He is very strong on this issue and steadfast and already making developments and really improving the level of prosecution, upholding the laws that are actually on the books which is sort of shocking.

DOBBS: Isn't that something.

GUILFOYLE: Unbelievable.

DOBBS: And the great thing, too, is Attorney General Sessions has the president's back in every sense, politically and personally. This is a man who early stood with the president. He stands with him strongly now. Together they are a formidable force, reversing much of the Obama administration's disastrous refusal to enforce immigration law and to secure our borders.

GUILFOYLE: Real quick, what about the wall? He's promised he's going to build this wall. Are you confident that it will get done, and what do you say to some of the people in Congress who are saying we are not going to give him the money for it?

GUILFOYLE: I say to them they better get behind this president, because this president is the one who put them in office and led them to victory. And he won't be available to them in 2018 if they betray him.

GUILFOYLE: All right, Lou Dobbs, always a pleasure, thank you so much.

DOBBS: Great to be with you.

GUILFOYLE: And coming up next right here on "Hannity."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PALMIERI: I think most journalists are probably leaning more to the left than the right. Think about the kind of person that is drawn to do this as a career.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GUILFOYLE: A former Clinton campaign staffer admits that the press has a liberal bias but claims that it makes things harder for Democrats. Ari Fleischer and Anthony Scaramucci join us next with reaction.

And then later President Trump is showing the world what leading from the front looks like and that America is taking a new approach to foreign policy. Herman Cain will be here later. That and much more as HANNITY continues. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GUILFOYLE: Welcome back to "Hannity." During a panel discussion in Washington yesterday, former Clinton campaign communications director Jennifer Palmieri admitted that members of the media lean to the left, but then claimed that due to their slant, they are harder on Democrats. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PALMIERI: I think most journalists are probably leaning more to the left than the right. Think about the kind of person that is drawn to do this as a career. They believe in government, they think politics matter, they like it, they find it interesting. They don't make a lot of money. That doesn't seem to concern them. But what I have found means that they come after us harder on what I describe as the crap. They come after us harder on the place intrigue, on the process, on things that really shouldn't matter.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GUILFOYLE: Joining me now with reaction is former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer. He was on the panel yesterday. And also with us is Trump transition executive committee member and founder of SkyBridge Capital Anthony Scaramucci. Gentlemen, thanks for being here with me tonight. So Air, I will begin with you. You were on the panel with her. What do you think, is there any substance to those claims that the press is tougher on Democratic administrations than Republicans?

ARI FLEISCHER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Kimberly, first it's great to hear a Democrat acknowledge what Republicans have said for years, which is that the press largely comes from the left. But the notion of that that means they are harder on the left is nonsensical. Take the palace intrigue that she talked about. Have you ever seen more palace intrigue coverage and tougher coverage than on Donald Trump right now?

GUILFOYLE: No.

FLEISCHER: I think the press gets credit for being tough on Hillary for her email scandal, and that was a scandal that was hard to overlook. They were tough on Hillary's husband for his Monica scandal, another scandal hard to overlook. But when it comes to day in day out coverage, the press so much harder on Republicans than Democrats, and they're triply as hard on Donald Trump as they are on everybody else. And they were soft on Barack Obama.

GUILFOYLE: Anthony, you have been on inside, part of the transition team. So you experienced it, felt it up close and personal.

ANTHONY SCARAMUCCI, TRUMP TRANSITION EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBER: And I think to add to what Ari is you have a situation where there's a lot of personal assassination, Kimberly, because they don't like the policies of the right. And so what they try to do is identify who is a weak link or who could be slipping in favor, and then they do a massive pile on to see if they can knock that person out. Andy Puzder would be an example of that. The labor secretary designee, unbelievably talented guy, all of that was political rigmarole, totally unnecessary. And they characterized him in a certain way, and he such a gentleman that he stepped out of the process so that it wouldn't detract from the president of the United States. And so they are effective at this, unfortunately, and they do it all the time.

GUILFOYLE: Ari, what you think in terms of the communication and how that is going in terms of the Trump administration? The press after him every single day, looking for any kind of thing that can blow up.

FLEISCHER: I keep a file, I keep a file, and it's a bulging file that gets bigger every day of vivid examples that I think the press has done that illustrates the bias. Just yesterday "Washington Post" had story about Attorney General Sessions down at the border and how he wanted to crack down on people who are criminals coming into America. And the story conflated illegal immigration with immigration and talked about how Republicans wanted to crack down on immigration. And it quoted not one, not two, not three, but four people who are against what Sessions did. It did not have one quote of any expert or Republican supporting what the attorney general did. And nobody at "The Post" catches this stuff. And that's the bias in the newsroom that bothers me so much.

GUILFOYLE: Yes. It's tough to experience up close and personal, it's tough I think even for our viewers to see.

SCARAMUCCI: It is a blood sport. You have to have a really thick skin. I do give her some credit for what she said, though. She did admit to the bias. It is a very big bias, Kimberly, but I do think the Republicans have to take a "no whining" approach on this and just hit as hard as we can on the policies, because with the right communication, right communication strategies, I think we're right on the policies and we'll win the American people. And the president has done a great job of coming over the top and using Twitter, other devices in social media to relate directly to the people, recognizing that bias in the media.

GUILFOYLE: He's very effective, I think you would agree, in terms of his messaging and communicating and having that transparency, sort of a one-on- one relationship with the American people, but it's also out of necessity.

SCARAMUCCI: And he's also done something -- people now believe what Ms. Palmieri said about the media. It is very biased, very slanted to the left. And the president as a candidate and as president has done a very effective job of giving them more and more evidence every day.

GUILFOYLE: What about those in the Trump administration that have said essentially the press is the opposition party, that that is how difficult and contentious the relationship is? Do you agree? And if so, what can the Trump administration do to improve their relationship with the press?

FLEISCHER: A Gallup poll came out last week that asked voters whether they thought the press was favored towards the Democrats, the Republicans, and some 62 percent said the press was biased to the Democrats, some 22 percent said it's biased toward Republicans. So it's an uphill fight for Republicans at all times. And to some degree the press is the opposition party. Their role is to be the devil's advocate to whoever is in government, but like I said before, they were soft on Obama and very hard on Donald Trump.

Sometimes Donald Trump deserves it, though, and earns it, and I don't object to the press being tough on him. But when they are too tough, too oppositional, when they just can't stand anything he does, that's the real problem and that's where I fault the press for not even giving Donald Trump a chance in most instances.

GUILFOYLE: Anthony?

SCARAMUCCI: I would tell my fellow Republicans a "no whining" strategy, stick to great communication and understanding and explaining policies to the American people. We have so many devices now that can go right over the top, Kimberly. That's our best strategy and we have to use that to win the legislative and policy battles.

GUILFOYLE: He's definitely had a lot of accomplishments so far already in less than 100 days. Gentlemen, thank you so much for being with me.

Coming up, President Trump shows the world what leading from the front looks like and that he means business. Up next we will get reaction from Herman Cain. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GUILFOYLE: Welcome back to "Hannity." The days of America leading from behind are over. Earlier today President Trump sent a message to America's enemies after dropping the, quote, "mother of all bombs" on an ISIS installation in a remote area of Afghanistan. This is just the latest example of newfound American leadership. It has been a very busy week for President Trump. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We are sending an armada, very powerful. We have submarines, very powerful, far more powerful than the aircraft carrier, that I can tell you. I can tell you China will do much better on trade if they help us with North Korea.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And you think he knows that?

TRUMP: I think he knows that. I told him that, yes.

Frankly, Putin is backing a person that is truly an evil person.

The vicious slaughter of innocent civilians with chemical weapons including the barbaric killing of small and helpless children and babies must be forcefully rejected by any nation that values human life.

I thought we had to do something about it. I have absolutely no doubt we did the right thing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GUILFOYLE: And joining is now with reaction is former presidential candidate and Fox News contributor, Herman Cain. So after this week, how much leverage do you think that the United States has gained or lost with Russia when it comes to the situation in Syria?

HERMAN CAIN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: I believe, Kimberly, that our leverage has gone up significantly because this president has demonstrated, as you said, we are going to lead from the front, not from behind. But secondly, it shows he is decisive and not afraid to act.

Now, this sends a second strong message to our enemies and our allies that this president and this administration is serious. Here's something that probably the liberal media is not going to talk about after this incident today in Afghanistan. They are not going to talk about the fact that the military probably already knew about these ISIS targets, but we had an administration to before that didn't want to do anything about it. Now we have an administration and a president that is willing to do something about it.

GUILFOYLE: You know, and this was consistent with the rhetoric during the campaign of candidate Trump that he would act on military intelligence, that he wasn't going to a person that would draw a redline and then do nothing. He is getting these Intel reports and acting decisively within the first 100 days of his administration. What kind of message as well does this send to North Korea? I want to talk about that for a moment.

CAIN: Unfortunately, it won't send a message to North Korea because they aren't listening. They aren't listening to the actions of the United States. They aren't listening to the rest of the world. They aren't listening to the United Nations, so it won't send a message to them.

But what it does do is it sends a message to the rest of the world that the United States is not going to tolerate things that have been tolerated in the past. To countries like China, it sends a message to them. Countries like Russia, even though they are in denial about what happened in Syria, it's going to send a strong message to him.

And here's the other thing, I hope it sends a strong message to Iran that if you try to taunt our ships again, the result may be a little different than just letting you taunt our ships and we do nothing about it.

GUILFOYLE: These recent threats, too, with North Korea, I am concerned, Mr. Cain, because, like you said, they don't listen. But there seems to be a little bit of an expectation that China's President Xi will in fact be able to do something about this, and you heard those comments from the president today that he had good expectation, a good relationship with him, and was hoping that he might be able to control North Korea.

CAIN: We have seen two examples already where China is listening and may be changing in order to try to put some impact on North Korea. First, North Korea sent some cargo ships of coal, their primary resource, to China, and guess what, China sent them back home. And then the second thing what happened with the U.N. revolution. Russia, they would not vote to put sanctions on Syria, but China simply abstained, which is another way of saying we are not going to tolerate their actions. So I happen to believe that China is showing signs that they will help us put pressure on North Korea, and that is a good thing.

And let me add one other point. The United States is not starting this stuff. The United States is simply responding to this stuff. And the same message goes to North Korea and Kim Jong-un. We aren't going to start a fight, but if they start a fight, then the United States under this administration will probably end that fight.

GUILFOYLE: Herman Cain, always a pleasure to have you on this program. Thank you so much.

CAIN: Thank you, Kimberly.

GUILFOYLE: And coming up, we need your help with tonight's "Question of the Day." Will you stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GUILFOYLE: Welcome back to "Hannity." And time for tonight's "Question of the Day." Do you think President Trump is sending the world a message? Head over to Facebook.com/SeanHannity and Twitter and let us know what you think.

And that's all the time we have left this evening. You can follow me on Twitter, @KimGuilfoyle, and I'll right back here tomorrow night filling in for Sean. We hope you'll join us. Have a great night.

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