Transcript

Liberal media pile on Scalise, GOP after shooting; Bossie vs. Harf on Trump investigation confusion

Fox News media analyst Howard Kurtz weighs in on coverage

 

This is a rush transcript from "The Story," June 19, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, HOST: Breaking tonight, Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, says in no uncertain terms, North Korea is to blame for the death of this young American college student. This is his statement, released just moments ago, "We hold North Korea accountable for Otto Warmbier's unjust imprisonment, and we demand the release of three other Americans who have been illegally detained." These are the Americans whose lives are still in jeopardy. One of them, obviously, in silhouette there on the right-hand side. So, this statement was sort of part of a one-two punch this evening. Before that, we heard from the President, he was calm but defiant. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: I just wanted to pass on word that Otto Warmbier has just passed away. He spent a year and a half in North Korea, a lot of bad things happened, but at least we got him home to be with his parents where they were so happy to see him even though he was in very tough condition. But he just passed away a little while ago. That's a brutal regime, and we'll be able to handle it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: "We'll be able to handle it." There is Otto Warmbier on the right-hand side - left-hand side, rather, of your screen. So, how to handle Kim Jong-un, whose regime continues to test the boundaries of what they can get away with the world stage? Will America seek retaliation for what amounts to the murder of a U.S. citizen by a foreign government? Whatever the answer tonight, an Ohio family should never have had to have lost their son over this. He was stealing a poster. So, they're now dealing with the unthinkable.

The Warmbier family releasing a statement a short time ago: "Unfortunately, the awful torturous mistreatment our son received at the hands of the North Koreans ensure that no other outcome was possible beyond this sad one we experienced today." Here now, Michael Malice, the Author of "Dear Reader: The Unauthorized Biography of Kim Jong-il." Thank you very much, Michael, for being here tonight. What's your take? What do you believe happened to him that put him in such dire conditions?

MICHAEL MALICE, AUTHOR AND GHOSTWRITER: I don't believe for a second that he was in a coma for a year in North Korea; you don't have the medical care to keep someone in a coma in North Korea. They don't put people in comas, they put people in coffins. This is the regime that has no respect for human life. And imagine what it's like living in this country now for 70 years, an ongoing regime where at any time, this can happen to you.

You have to live there from morning to night knowing your mother, your son, your sister, your brother, can be taken away in the middle of the night and you'll never have an explanation, and if you ask questions about what happened to them, you yourself will be in trouble. So, now, maybe, the one little piece of good can - that come of this disgusting tragedy is that people can start to understand just the levels of depravity the North Korean government is capable of.

MACCALLUM: So, you believe that he was probably - you know, the medical response was difficult to understand, how we ended up in this condition, given the fact that he didn't show the signs of trauma. Do you have any idea, you know, what kind of methods might have been used? How he went into cardiac arrest that put him into this coma?

MALICE: For all we know, this could've been self-harm. They could've driven into that situation; there are many things we can speculate about. The point of the matter is the blood of this kid is on our hands. Now, imagine if you are someone from Iran, and you are trespassing the White House and you stole a poster there; I'm sure the secret service would rough you up and kind of take you somewhere. But then, you tell the Iranian government, look, this kid was trying to steal, the Iranian government would say, send him over here, here's money to fix for the damages; and problem's solved.

This kid was never a prisoner, he was a hostage; he was a bargaining chip. And that's how they hold anyone who's in North Korea because they're going to get something out of him. When they capture that Ling reporter, they had Bill Clinton get on a plane to Pyongyang, and he bowed down and kissed Kim Jong-il's ring. And then Kim Jon-il has said to North Korean people, look, I make American Presidents bow down before me. So, they're very logical in their depravity.

MACCALLUM: All right. So, tell us about the hotel because he was traveling as a student.

MALICE: Right.

MACCALLUM: Went to this hotel, and you said there's a secret floor there that people are sort of challenged to spend time on. Why?

MALICE: I mean, I was at the hotel, I was on his floor. So, there's some blog out there back in the day; kids used to kind of go where you're not supposed to in that hotel, and there are secret cameras there. And when he went on that floor, supposedly, there are posters and he tried to take one. And the thing is, this poster, according to North Koreans, had a portrait of the leader. Now, the leaders there are deified, so when your house is flooded, you have portraits of the leaders on the wall, you're supposed to save those portraits of the cost of your own life.

There's a story of a North Korean who's lighting a cigarette with the newspaper, that picture was of the leader, and he got sent to prison. So, they have this veneration for the iconography of the leaders, which they take very seriously. Now, if you're a North Korean security guard and you see a kid doing this, you have to turn him in or your life is in danger. So, this is the whole series of dominos to ensure the absolute horrific things happen.

MACCALLUM: It's unbelievable. So, now, we hear this President saying that "we're going to handle this." And we hear Rex Tillerson saying, "We have three more people there and we want them back."

MALICE: Right. Yes.

MACCALLUM: What changes? Do you see this administration is dealing with these three people differently than we've seen in the past?

MALICE: In 2001 or 2002, North Korea admitted to the Japanese Prime Minister, they've been kidnapping Japanese citizens for decades, and that there were dozens of them in North Korea that were being held to teach them how to be spies. So, I don't know if this is going to change at all; we've known they've kidnapped people for many, many years, and people complained, and they have nuclear weapons, and they're defiant, and there's no easy answer when you're dealing with a bunch of gangsters who are glad to kill their own.

MACCALLUM: Well, the blood of this young man is on their hands.

MALICE: Absolutely.

MACCALLUM: All right. And we all need to remember that. Thank you, Michael.

MALICE: Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: Good to see you tonight. So, joining me now with more: General Jack Keane, Fox News military analyst and chairman of the Institute for the Study of War. Jack, good evening to you. You're listening to this conversation.

JACK KEANE, FOX NEWS MILITARY ANALYST AND INSTITUTE FOR THE STUDY OF WAR CHAIRMAN: Good to see you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: Your thoughts on, you know, militarily, any - what do we do in this situation? How do we retaliate?

KEANE: Well, first of all, I totally agree that there was murder committed here by the North Koreans. They usually take our people as hostages, as our guest just said, use them as a bargaining chip. And something went wrong here I suspect that they overstepped their bounds and killed this youngster. But nonetheless, I think the one thing that will help us with from his death; certainly, it'll strengthen our resolve that we really have to do something once and for all about this regime.

I kind of think the administration is there, but I think this will make it - it toughen them up a little bit to take these guys on if they need to. And also, our patience with China is going to run out here. If China doesn't really begin to get some noticeable result that is beginning to change the behavior of the North Koreans. Obviously, our major diplomatic and economic sanctions are coming through China's hands here.

And if that doesn't work, then we're going to likely have to go it alone here with some very tough sanctions on North Korea. Also, I believe we have to look hard at some sanctions on China, hard at, get-tough policy with China throughout the Western Pacific and the South China Sea. So, I think the administration will give China some more time, but I suspect their patience is running out.

MACCALLUM: So, you believe messages are being sent, is what I'm hearing from you, in terms of the administration to China? I want to ask about the other big developing situation with Syria, and what is going on in the push to eradicate ISIS from Raqqa. We shot down a Syrian fighter jet, which is a pretty bold move. I would imagine that you think it was the right one?

KEANE: Well, absolutely. I mean, Syrian pro-regime grown forces were trying to attack our ground forces, coalition forces and they also bombed them, Syrian air forces bombed them. We retaliated. And we're going to do what's necessary for Syria or Iraq to protect our people who are supporting the forces on the ground. Then, we're not going to stand for anything like that. I also believe that the Russians threat that they impose if we fly west of the Euphrates, where we've conducted four actions west of the Euphrates in the last year.

With their use of air power, and yet threaten if we fly west of the Euphrates, they're going to shoot us down. I think that's more bluster than anything else; it's intended to soothe the wounds of the Syrian military, and particularly their air force that Russia kind of has their back. But Russia, Martha, does not want to tangle with the United States. We -- their capability, the Russian capability at that airfield, that they have in Syria is vulnerable even though they have sophisticated missile defense there. They shot down one of our airplanes; we will probably take everything out that they have at that airfield. They know that they know our airpower capabilities in the Middle East on land, and also at sea is significant-

MACCALLUM: But Jack, before I let you go, this is basically a proxy fight now. This is Iran and the United States on the other side. We've got Iran, Syria, Russia on one side. You've got the United States and, you know, the Saudi's and others on the other fighting over who's going to dominate this area once ISIS is done, correct?

KEANE: Yes. This is - the Iranians are the strategist here, Martha. They drive the thinking on what needs to be done in Syria. And the Iranians are very concerned about after ISIS cleared out from Raqqa, all the way down through the Euphrates River Valley as it goes into Iraq, that the United States will maintain influence over that area by the coalition forces that will be occupying that area. The Iranians want to form an arc of influence from Iran through Iraq, through Syria and the Euphrates river valley all the way to the western part of Syria. That's what is happening.

MACCALLUM: Jack, thank you very much. General Jack Keane, always good to see you, sir. So, we have this news breaking in the last hour: Senate GOP Leaders are planning to vote next week on legislation to repeal large chunks of the Affordable Care Act, prompting these very tough from the Senate Democratic Leader on the process. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, D-N.Y.: For something as important as this, to say that we're having regular order, to say that we're having an amendment process, in all due respect, is a joke.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, what about all those calls that we had last week for more unity and perhaps a little bit of coming together on health care? We're going to talk about that. Plus, suspected terror and two European capitals in the last 24 hours; what will represent a breaking point and how do we keep it from coming here to our shores? That big debate coming up right after this, stay with us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SADIQ KHAN, LONDON MAYOR: My message to London, actually, across the country is to be calm but vigilant.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So, we are back. We do have a little bit of good news to report tonight. And it is on Congressman Steve Scalise, his condition improving from critical to serious now, following last week's horrific shooting at a congressional baseball practice. Earlier today, the Alexandria Police Chief, highlighting the courage of those men and women in blue who rushed into action.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MICHAEL BROWN, ALEXANDRIA POLICE DEPARTMENT CHIEF: You can't teach the kind of courage and instinct that I saw from the three officers that are over here. That comes from within. That comes when somebody pins on the badge and they decide that they want to be a public servant and a cop. You can't teach that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: But despite the calls for unity in the hours following that attack, the reaction from some has been partisan, it has been personal, and in some cases, it is downright ugly. With some now blaming the victim, as you can believe it, Fox News' Howard Kurtz shows us what we're talking about.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HOWARD KURTZ, "MEDIABUZZ" HOST: Martha, while Steve Scalise remains hospitalized after his near-fatal shooting at a baseball practice, some liberals in the media are attacking him and his party. MSNBC host, Joy Reid, ripped the House Republican Whip for not supporting gay marriage, backing the House to repeal Obamacare, and opposing a ban on semiautomatic weapons.

JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: Because he is in jeopardy and everyone is pulling for him, are we required in a moral sense to put that aside at the moment?

KURTZ: Reid also injected race and sexual orientation into the discussion, saying on Twitter: Rep. Scalise was shot by a white man with a violent background, and saved by a black lesbian police officer. And yet." "Star Trek" actor, George Takei, who is gay, took a similar attack on Twitter: "The officer who saved bigoted, homophobic Rep. Steve Scalise during baseball practice was a black lesbian." Such criticism for a sharp rebuke for Reid's MSNBC colleague, Joe Scarborough: "Who would even think for one second that it is appropriate to attack a man who was fighting for his life after an assassination attempt?"

Jesse Benn, a writer for the liberal Huffington Post seemed almost to condone the violence, tweeting, "What's more harmful? Putting millions already on the margins more at risk by draconian policies or shooting a racist lawmaker in the hip?" Others including journalists also engaged in finger-pointing. Scott Pelley, as he was stepping down as a CBS anchor, insinuated that the victim and his party might be to blame.

SCOTT PELLEY, CBS EVENING NEWS MANAGING EDITOR AND ANCHOR: It's time to ask whether the attack on the United States Congress yesterday was foreseeable, predictable, and to some degree, self-inflicted.

KURTZ: Self-inflicted? While Pelley pointed to inflammatory rhetoric on both sides, he devoted the most time to the President's heated criticism of the press.

PELLEY: President Trump was asked whether he worried that that language would incite violence. His paws indicated it had never crossed his mind. And then, he said, "No, that doesn't worry me."

KURTZ: What should worry all of us is any attempt of guilt by association, blaming political rhetoric, which, yes, both sides should tone down, for a man who hated Republicans bringing a rifle to a baseball diamond. And to slam a wounded lawmaker because you don't like his politics should also be way out of bounds. Martha.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Thank you very much, Howie Kurtz. Here with more: Guy Benson, political editor of townhall.com and a Fox News contributor; Zac Petkanas, he's former DNC adviser. Gentlemen, welcome to both of you. Guy, you wrote an excellent piece on this. You know, the idea - it's hard to know where to begin with this. I mean, you look at what Joy Reid said, you look at the way that Scott Pelley choice to use his final broadcast to, basically, point fingers at the president, and to say that he has essentially incited the violence that we saw on that baseball field last week.

Everybody wants to put everyone in a box, give everyone labels. And the way that Joy Reid went after him, by saying, you know, well, know he's this, this, and this; you know, giving all these homophobic slurs and the rest that you just saw. And then say, but we won't do that because the poor man is lying in the hospital. I mean, really, Guy?

GUY BENSON, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND POLITICAL EDITOR AT TOWNHALL.COM: Yes. I found it really deeply unseemly, that some on the left, including Ms. Reid, decided to take the Scalise shooting and turn it into a tale about identity politics, when in fact it was a tale against identity politics. When those shots, Martha, started to ring out and lives were on the line, those officers thought about duty, and honor, and courage, and shared humanity. What didn't matter to them, were race, and gender, and sexual orientation, or the political views of the people that they were protecting which was their job. Thank God, those officers had the moral clarity, and the professionalism to reject this nonsense and do their jobs, which is why the only fatality was the assailant.

MACCALLUM: Yes. She talked about his take on traditional marriage, Zac, and you know, suggested that this lesbian officer might, you know, somehow think twice. We now know from what we've read about this - the families are very close, Steve Scalise's family and Officer Greiner are very close. I mean, you know, to ascribe that kind of thinking to her I think is so offensive. I mean, can anybody stick up for what she has said here?

ZAC PETKANAS, FORMER DNC ADVISOR: Look, I think that the politicization needs to stop and when these kinds of things happen; this is a tragedy and all we hope is for Congressman Scalise to get better, and to get back to work. But let's be clear, the politicization is happening on the right, as well. I mean, if you look at what's happening in the Georgia Congressional Election right now, we have the Chairman of a - Leader of the Republican Party down there.

A Republican who says, "I think the shooting is going to win the election for us," and the Republicans are actually running a T.V. ad in there with the shooting. I mean that is disgusting. That is disgraceful. And I think that I would like to see a little more condemnation from that from the Republicans when we talk about politicization.

MACCALLUM: Guy, what do you say to that?

BENSON: I say that I don't like seeing that type of ad, and I did watch it today. I would like to see some consistency from the left because this is not the lane that they adopted after the Gabrielle Gifford shooting in 2011. Where, immediately, the blame was put on Sarah Palin, and the Tea Party, and conservative talk radio, when there was absolutely no evidence that the right had anything to do it.

MACCALLUM: Then they just did it again in the New York Times.

BENSON: Exactly, this week. This shooter, actually, was a left-winger who watched left-wing programs, who hated Republicans and was a big Democrat and Bernie Sanders supporter. That doesn't make a left responsible for what he did. By the way, he ranted against Republican in that Georgia race on Facebook, and he called her an expletive. I'm not blaming the left or Bernie or anyone else other than the shooter, but the left plays different games here. And when they have a chance to blame it on the right, they do it every time and now, they're so frustrated and angry and disgusted that Republicans are shoving back with some of the same tactics, which I don't like, but lets at least have some consistency.

MACCALLUM: Zac, I'm going to give you the final word.

PETKANAS: Look, I think - I'm very glad that Guy is saying that he doesn't approve of the T.V. ads and the Republicans are running right now taking advantage of the shooting or the fact that they think that Karen Handel has a chance to win and will win because of this shooting. I'm very glad that he's that that is a disgusting tactic.

MACCALLUM: Yes. I think we can all agree on that. Gentlemen, thank you very much. Good to see both of you tonight.

PETKANAS: Thanks, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So, Americans watch what is happening in Europe in the past few weeks in shock. The great capitals of the continent are under attack, attack after attack; every single week it seems. Have our allies ignored the threats for too long? The Top Spokesman for the Council on American- Islamic Relations, Ahmed Rehab; and a Dr. Zuhdi Jasser are here to debate. Plus, gunfire rips through a favorite summer beach town; a mysterious crash kills U.S. sailors, and Bill Cosby may be celebrating. But is he jumping the gun here?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The only disappointment, so to speak, is that we didn't get the full equip.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So, you've heard the big story tonight. But now, here're some of the other newsmakers of the evening.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[GUNSHOTS]

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Unbelievable, wild the shooting that happened on the strip in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, a gunman unloading on a crowd; he wounded six people. Everyone is expected to survive. The shooter is now behind bars. And the U.S. Navy identifying seven sailors killed in a bizarre and tragic incident that happened on Friday night. We first got a word of it live here on Friday evening on THE STORY. A massive container ship collided with the warship: the USS Fitzgerald off the coast of Japan. Most of the crew was asleep when it happened; an investigation into this is underway. And the prosecution, not giving up after a judge declared a mistrial in Bill Cosby's sexual assault case. The jury could not reach a unanimous verdict. The Pennsylvania District Attorney's Office saying, that they are planning to retry the case, so more to come on that.

And breaking tonight: terror investigations underway in the capitals of two U.S. allies. In France, a man rammed his car into a police vehicle on the famous Champs-Elysees in Paris. The attacker was killed, the police were not injured but they feel they stop him from doing something horrific. And in the United Kingdom, a suspect plowed his van into a crowd of people, leaving late-night services at a London mosque. At least ten people were injured. The driver was arrested, and the British Prime Minister Theresa May is calling this terrorism.

Ahmed Rehab is the National Strategic Communications Director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, and Dr. Zuhdi Jasser is Founder and President of the American-Islamic Forum for Democracy. Gentlemen, thank you very much for being here. Zuhdi, I want to start with you. You say that Europe is now into its second decade of ignoring its biggest problem. What do you mean?

DR. ZUHDI JASSER, AMERICAN-ISLAMIC FORUM FOR DEMOCRACY FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT: Well, they've had droves of immigrants that have not been really assimilated into understanding what it means to be European, or British, or American. And bottom line is that this lack of confrontation of Islamism, theocratic Islam, if you will, and allowing these ideologies to brew has now brought exactly what ISIS wants. The reason they commit acts of terror in London, in Paris, and in San Bernardino, is they want to start a spark so that there's an equal and opposite reaction.

So, as a response, that opposite reaction of hyper-nationalism, bigotry, racial supremacism, is exactly what ISIS wants. So, as long as the West continues to deny, because of using Muslims as a minority, as a grievance group, as long as we deny that Islam is in that time of history in which it's confronting theocracy in Iran, and Saudi Arabia, and Syria. And we can do the work for reform here in the west that they just can't do in the Middle East. The West has been enabling us to prevent the reforms we need, and the reaction from the hyper-nationalist has been now feeding into the ISIS narrative.

MACCALLUM: So, the idea, this is a 47-year-old man from Wales who drove this van into this group of worshippers who were leaving that mosque. Ahmed, so, what Zuhdi is saying is that this is all part of the plan, to sort of incite this kind of chaos between people and to pit them against each other, and create these situations that that's the goal of what ISIS wants.

AHMED REHAB, COUNCIL ON AMERICAN-ISLAMIC RELATIONS NATIONAL STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: I agree with Zuhdi on that particular point that ISIS does want ultimately to divide and to put a wedge between Muslims and non-Muslims. I don't know that's what he's saying.

MACCALLUM: It seems to be working.

REHAB: . that's my belief. Yes, in the west, in particular, in Europe, in the United States, but in the world at large. And I think, however, where we part ways, myself and your guest is that I believe by linking ISIS to Islam proper, or to immigrants, or waves of immigrants and refugees, as he just did, plays right into that. And allow someone like this man who drove this man into these groups of essential immigrants, or native born Muslims, or refugees, whatever general group of Muslims they were, to make that link in his mind that he's acting against ISIS because somehow all Muslims are complicit for what ISIS does, or all Muslims bear some responsibility for ISIS which is obviously.

MACCALLUM: I mean, this is where this conversation often goes, Zuhdi, that the problem is that this has been blamed on all Muslims, and that's what inside a man like this to do what he did. What do you say?

ZUDHI JASSER, FORMER LT. COMMANDER U.S. NAVY: Well. I say that, you know, Martha, hypocrisy is that many on the left and in the'slamists come together and want to blame rhetoric and want to blame political ideology on individuals like this native, this hyper-nationalist, racial supremacist. And yet when it comes to global field political jihadism, they don't want to make any connection between nonviolent Islamic state ideologies, Saudi Arabia, Iran, and many imams and cleric that are in London, that are in America, that want to condemn terror, but they're anti-Semitic, and misogynistic, and have other ideas that are not compatible.

MACCALLUM: Ahmed, go ahead.

REHAB: Why would this man drive his van into British Muslims who are worshiping in their minds?

MACCALLUM: Because he's playing into exactly what the Islamists wants.

REHAB: Because he's bought into what Zuhdi is saying. He's has bought into.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Go ahead.

REHAB: Well, what Zuhdi is furthering is the notion that Muslims at large bear some responsibility.

MACCALLUM: I've never heard him say that once.

REHAB: Well, denied that Zuhdi, would you?

JASSER: So Ahmed, listen, I will tell you that the nativist hyper nationalist does feed some of this.

(CROSSTALK)

JASSER: . but you also have to acknowledge.

(CROSSTALK)

JASSER: You have to acknowledge, and you can't take Americans for fools, that the global jihadist movement has nothing to do with all of these acts of terror.

(CROSSTALK)

JASSER: It's hypocrisy.

REHAB: What you're trying to do is link ISIS, which is an extremist terroristic group to Muslims at large, which is a global.

MACCALLUM: But isn't that -- hold on one second, before we run out of time. Ahmed, I believe what he's saying is that that's exactly what ISIS wants. ISIS wants it to be directed at all Muslims. But thinking people understand that that is not the case. This man acted in a very violent way, which is absolutely wrong. That's why it's being treated as a terrorist attack. But you can't allow them to be successful in doing that, Zuhdi?

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Zuhdi, very quickly. And then, Ahmed, very quickly we have to wrap it up.

JASSER: Ahmed, there are a few example of militants like this guy. But the proportionality of global jihadism which you continue to deny a link of the non-violent ideology of Islamism to the militant reactions that we have to protect our country from, and you are avoiding the leadership necessary to acknowledge, yes, there may be a link.

(CROSSTALK)

JASSER: . just as we had to link jihadism with militant jihadism.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Quickly, we've got to go.

REHAB: People who are watching can DVR back. You started off by saying the increase in immigrants are part of the problem of ISIS. You cannot make that link. You cannot talk about immigration.

JASSER: Not all immigrants, Islamists.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Gentlemen, I got to go. I'm sorry. We have to pick it up next time. Thank you very much to you both. All right. Still ahead tonight, a major first amendment ruling that was handed on by the Supreme Court today. Even though they were directly involved, why are the Washington Redskins very happy about this tonight? Plus, is President Trump under investigation or not? If you watch the Sunday shows, you know there's a lot of back and forth about this. Judge Andrew Napolitano joins us with his thought on whether or not that is the case. And then, David Bossie and Marie Harf joined me to debate the fallout tonight, when we come back.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: The president has not been notified by anyone that he's under investigation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Developing tonight, some conflicting information from President Trump's legal team. In a tweet last week, the president seemingly admitted that he was under investigation by special prosecutor Robert Mueller. And when Jay Sekulow, a member of his team, his legal team, was asked to clear that up, things only got a little murkier. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "FOX NEWS SUNDAY")

JAY SEKULOW, PRESIDENT TRUMP'S LEGAL TEAM: Now, he's being investigated by the Department of Justice. So, he's being investigated for taking the action that the attorney general and deputy attorney general recommended him to take by the agency who recommended the termination. Let me be crystal clear, so you completely understand. We have not received nor are we aware of any investigation of the president of the United States.

CHRIS WALLACE, HOST: You just said two times that he's being investigated.

SEKULOW: No. The context of the tweet, I just gave you the legal theory, Chris, of how the constitution works.

WALLACE: Jay, the table speaks for itself. You say that he's being investigated.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Yeah, pretty much, right? OK. Here now Fox News senior judicial analyst, Judge Andrew Napolitano. So is Jay Sekulow, who I know you know, and we all know, he's been on here many times, is he serving the president well?

ANDREW NAPOLITANO, FOX NEWS JUDICIARY ANALYST: Well, let me tell you what I think he's doing. I think he is -- first of all, Chris Wallace, we all know him, is a great interrogator, and Chris was correct. Jay did twice say.

MACCALLUM: You absolutely did.

NAPOLITANO: . that the president is being investigated. So there are investigations and there's investigation, no surprise.

MACCALLUM: But the president is being investigated.

NAPOLITANO: Correct. In my view the president is being investigated, and I'll tell you why in a minute. But with respect to Jay, Jay was answering the technical question, have we received formal notice of the investigation? Look, the federal government, the Department of Justice, the FBI, doesn't give you that formal notice until they're well into the investigation.

MACCALLUM: And they don't have to.

NAPOLITANO: . and they have decided to target you, meaning they have decided to present evidence to a grand jury. The president cannot be indicted while he is the sitting president. So they're not going to target the president of the United States, so they'll probably never send the formal notification. But there are many, many steps in the investigatory process that precede the formal notification, and I suggest.

MACCALLUM: All they have to say is, you know, obviously, they're looking into the president's campaign.

NAPOLITANO: Correct.

MACCALLUM: He was followed on that big umbrella. We're not worried about anything, we're not concerned -- it's not that hard.

NAPOLITANO: I think that would have been a more credible answer. Now, Jay knows more about the president's case and I do. Jay's on the legal team. But the former director of the FBI.

MACCALLUM: Most likely the president said you better go out there and tell them I'm not under investigation.

NAPOLITANO: Right. That's probably what happened, knowing the president as we both do. But the former director of the FBI laid out enough of the case, not to indict or convict, but to commence an investigation. And it is the things that James Comey said under oath.

(CROSSTALK)

NAPOLITANO: Correct. Combined with whatever else he gave, probably his memoranda, who knows what else to the special prosecutor, that for sure, in my opinion, triggered the beginning of the investigation.

MACCALLUM: All right.

NAPOLITANO: Earliest dates.

MACCALLUM: I want to put these two legal teams up on the screen because we keep hearing every day about the different people who've been hired. Mueller is hiring a very impressive team. And there's a look at Trump's legal, Marc Kasowitz, John Dowd on the right, who is a major league baseball attorney or has represented them, Jay Sekulow, who you just saw, and Michael Bowe, who we don't have a picture apparently. Here's Mueller steam, a couple of missing faces there as well, but those are some of the individuals that he has assembled. Who has the better team?

NAPOLITANO: Well, Bob Mueller has the most experienced team with the Justice Department and with criminal prosecutors. And I mean, very, very serious, high-end, white-collar criminal prosecutors.

MACCALLUM: And Ron's case handled by one of them, for example.

NAPOLITANO: Correct. On the president's team, again, I'm very fond of Jay because we know him so well. John Dowd is among the more senior people in the criminal defense bar in Washington, D.C., and he knows everybody, as well. I'm very fond of Marc Kasowitz, but he's not a criminal defense guy. He's a team leader and a strategist. I think you're going to see a lot more faces on those screen the next time we do this.

MACCALLUM: Judge, thank you.

NAPOLITANO: You're welcome.

MACCALLUM: Good to see you as always. So let's bring in David Bossie, the president of Citizens United, served as a deputy campaign manager for the Trump campaign. And Marie Harf, former spokesperson for Obama state department. Both are Fox News contributors. Welcome to both of you. Good to have you both here tonight. David, let me ask you, just listen to the conversation the Judge and I had. I know, obviously, the administration wants to get off of this topic. It's technology week. Last week was infrastructure week. But they're having a tough time changing the narrative here.

DAVID BOSSIE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, you know, I think that the president has an incredible agenda and that's what he wants to stay focused on. He is the president of the United States, and he wants to talk about his tremendous agenda for the American people. The reason that he got elected was to create tax reform opportunities, to have an infrastructure builder take care of the crumbling roads and bridges, and to fix -- you know, the repeal and replace Obamacare. Along with many other issues of the day, that he is focused on, and this is a distraction. And this investigation has been going on for nearly a year now. August, it started last August. People need to understand -- if there was a shred of evidence, if there was a shred of evidence between -- the Trump campaign colluded with.

MACCALLUM: My question is about the agenda. But what you're heading on -- I'm sorry to interrupt you. But you look at the tweets and you look at all of this, and these reports that are coming out in many different places that say that he's very fixated on this. That he's very upset about this investigation. And that he is dwelling on it and focusing on it. What do you say?

BOSSIE: I would be too, if I were him because I would be frustrated that the left-wing media is out to get him. They are out to nullify an election for the first time. The permanent obstruction campaign that is going on in America is something we've never seen before, never seen the likes of before, and the president is a victim of this. And so, he is out there every day trying to do the job that he was elected to and he is being berated by leaks by this deep state, by the Department of Justice folks, these folks that are leaking every bit of information to try to make political points against the president when there's not a shred of evidence to show any wrongdoing whatsoever.

MACCALLUM: And Marie, Washington loves this stuff. You know, they love hiring lawyers, they love digging into investigations. They're not particularly interested in the president's agenda. I mean, tonight, I was watching a lot of CEO's, a lot of technology folks, and they're all talking about business. They're all talking about Military contracts. They're talking about all kinds of things that they want to get done. The president has a very solid team by most accounts on both sides. So do you think that the other side of the aisle will be able to see its way clear to get anything done here? You've got health care they want to do before July 4th.

MARIE HARF, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Right. And there's only about a handful of days left before July 4th to do that. And the problem is.

MACCALLUM: I know.

HARF: . it's not the left-wing media that is making this investigation grow and get press coverage. A lot of the reason that's happening is things that President Trump himself is doing. Look, sending Jay Sekulow out to say what he said had made that the new story today, instead of tech week. That did not do President Trump any favor in terms of defending him. So if President Trump could stop the tweeting, could stop doing some of the things that has made this investigation have legs, then maybe we actually would be talking about the agenda. But the problem is he can't seem to help himself from doing that. And he would actually I think do better.

MACCALLUM: When he does, he does extraordinarily well. So I mean -- but David, you've known the president a long time. Can he do that?

BOSSIE: His use of social media and social media platforms is one of the reasons that he's president of the United States.

MACCALLUM: True.

BOSSIE: So that's a fact and he knows it. So the other part of that is, is that he takes to social media to make sure he's able to bypass the left- wing media, who is out to get him. And so, he's able to speak directly to the American people, and in only 140 characters, he can only do so much. So I'm a believer in his use of twitter. Certainly, we can look at a tweet here and there and try to dissect it.

MACCALLUM: And that's what he said. He said if I get one wrong and I get ten right, I'm OK with that.

HARF: . is one of the reasons we're not getting the agenda push forward, just candidly, as governing is different than being a candidate.

MACCALLUM: Marie Harf, thank you very much. David Bossie, always good to see you. Thank you, guys. So a major victory for free speech coming out of the highest court in the land, we're going to explain to you what happen, very big story tonight on The Story, so how it could impact one of the most popular franchises in all of football, when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: Those are two members of the bands known as The Slants, which today, when a huge decision at the place where they were sitting on the steps, the Supreme court. So the band was denied a trademark because the feds considered the name, The Slants, to be offensive. But an 8-0 ruling, the justices sided with the band, they struck down the ruling against disparaging trademarks. The decision also being notice and hailed by the NFL's Washington Redskins, which is currently fighting its own battle with the feds over their mascot. Charlie Hurt is as a political columnist for the Washington Times, a very big flint fans, I know. Julie Roginsky is a Democratic analyst. Both are Fox News contributors. Charlie, let me start with you, what did you think about this decision and the impact on the Redskins potentially?

CHARLIE HURT, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, you know, Martha, I think the most interesting thing about it is the fact that it was an 8-0 ruling. We don't ever get 8-0 rulings anymore. They're always 5-4.

MACCALLUM: All of the judges like The Slants.

HURT: Yeah, exactly. Who knew that The Slants were so popular with the Supreme Court? But what I think it does shows is -- it does show that an absolute unified belief that the first amendment is there to protect offensive speech, not on offensive speech, or we wouldn't need the first amendment. And also, I think underscores the fact that we have federal bureaucrats in the federal government who don't have that same regard even in a case where you had 8-0 justices ruling that they'd been wrong all these years.

MACCALLUM: Here is this Asian-American band that names themselves The Slants and they said, we want to talk about Asian-American culture. We like this name. We think it has a lot of meaning.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: And Julie, the feds originally said, oh, no, you can't call yourselves that. What do you think?

HARF: Well, I cannot agree more with Charlie. Look, it doesn't have to be an Asian-American band to be called The Slants. I mean, look, on Georgia somebody wanted to call themselves The Hitler's, they could do that, as well. We have a first amendment in this country for a reason, and in defense free speech. And that means I may not agree with your speech, but it's -- exactly your right to say it. And the bottomline is.

MACCALLUM: Including the Redskins?

HARF: Including the redskins. And so, if the Redskins want to name themselves the Redskins, they should name themselves the Redskins. It may not be something I want to be called if I were a member of the football team but nevertheless, they have the right to call themselves whatever they like.

MACCALLUM: Let me get your quick thoughts on the Georgia election in district six. What do you think is going to happen tomorrow night? Very tight race, everybody is watching. It's the most expensive race in congressional history. Charlie, you start.

HURT: You know a massive amount of money on both sides, especially in the Democratic side. And if there's a district that is prone for a rejection of the Trump presidency, it's here. But I have to say, if Democrats don't manage to do that, and I don't think that they will, I think it's devastating for their case, that this anti-Trump movement is somehow is going to hurt Republicans.

MACCALLUM: Special election. Karen Handel is the Republican. John Ossoff, the Democrat. Julie, quick thought on this?

ROGINSKY: Finally disagree in a sense that there are at least 25 districts that are more Democratic, meaning next year than these Georgia six. Look, this has never had been a competitor race in the first place, the fact that it is said something about Donald Trump. This is a district that has been Republicans for a generation or more, the fact that it's even competitive does not bode well for the Republicans going to 2018.

MACCALLUM: Well, it's going to happen live here tomorrow night. So we'll be covering it on The Story tomorrow evening. Thank you, guys. Good to see you, both.

HURT: Thank you, Martha.

HARF: Nice to see you.

MACCALLUM: So we are remembering Otto Warmbier in our quote of the night when we come back. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: Otto Warmbier went to the University of Virginia. He was 22 years old and he died today, shortly after coming home to Ohio. He was held and mistreated for 17 months by the brutal regime in North Korea, make no mistake, his blood is on their hands. This never should have happened. His parents said this today. "It will be easy at a moment like us to focus on all that we lost, future time that won't be spent with a warm, engaging, brilliant young man. His curiosity and enthusiasm for life knew no bounds. But we choose to focus on the time we were given to be with this remarkable person." You can tell, from the outpouring of emotion from the community that he touched, Wyoming, Ohio, and the University of Virginia, to name just two. That the love for Otto went well beyond his immediate family. Our prayers are with the Warmbier family tonight. Thank you for being with us, everybody. Tucker Carlson is coming up next. Good night. We'll see you back here on "The Story," tomorrow.

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