This is a rush transcript from "The Story," June 28, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MARTHA MACCALLUM, "THE STORY" HOST: Breaking tonight, the spotlight continues to heat up on the Obama's side of the equation when it comes to the question of Russia and our elections. And now, a new interview with Susan Rice has raised some new questions. Good evening, everybody! I'm Martha MacCallum, and here is "The Story." The former Obama national security adviser, choosing to weigh in, once again, on her role in the unmasking of Trump officials. At first, she said she knew nothing about these allegations.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SUSAN RICE, FORMER OBAMA NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: During the transition, after President Trump had been elected that he and the people around him may have been caught up in surveillance of foreign individuals and their identities may have been disclosed.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you know anything about this?
RICE: I know nothing about this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: Just weeks later, she came clean on the role that she played in this process of unmasking certain American citizens. But she claimed at the time that although it was done, it was not improper.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Within that process, and within the context of the Trump campaign, the Trump transition, did you seek the names of people involved -- did you unmask the names of people involved in the Trump transition, the campaign, and people surrounding the president-elect in order to spy on them, in order to expose them?
RICE: Absolutely not, for any political purposes to spy, expose, or anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: So, tonight, something different, suggesting that the spotlight on her may be in part due to her gender and her race. Chief National Correspondent, Ed Henry, joins us live with more on this growing story from the White House tonight. Hi, Ed!
ED HENRY, FOX NEWS CHANNEL CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Martha, good to see. Remember, it was President Trump here at the White House in April who said, these charges that Susan Rice was involved in unmasking Trump advisers was a massive story that much of the media was ignoring. As you say now, Rice is firing back that this is an allegation that she says was made up out of whole cloth. She strongly suggests her race and gender played a role in the heat she faced, dating back to Benghazi, really.
Rice, choosing to air this claim in the friendly venue of the New York magazine profile, in which the former National Security Advisor suggests other Obama aides got less scrutiny because they were white. She says at one point, "Why me, why Jay Carney, for example, who was then our press secretary who stood up more?" Rice asked. Rice then added she doesn't know if race and gender are the reason before, well, invoking it. "I do not leap to the simple explanation that it's only about race and gender. I'm trying to keep my theories to myself until I'm ready to come out with them. It's not because I don't have any."
Now, Rice left out of that, a major factor that sparked her central role in Benghazi, of course, was that she misled the public in five Sunday talk show appearances about whether in fact, it was a terror. And in terms of the unmasking of former Trump advisers like retired General Mike Flynn, the head of the National Security Agency, under oath, did not rule out recently that Rice played a role.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-SOUTH CAROLINA: Do you know if Susan Rice ever asks for an American citizen to unmasked?
MIKE ROGERS, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY: I'd have to pull the data, sir. I apologize.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HENRY: Now, Rice told the magazine she was enjoying a two and half week vacation in the Maldives with lots of tennis. But she may soon be volleying questions before the House Intel Committee. They've subpoenaed Rice and other Obama aides to find out just what they do know about unmasking. Martha.
MACCALLUM: Exactly. Ed, thank you so much. So, here now: Marc Thiessen, an American Enterprises scholar; and Jessica Tarlov, Democratic pollster, both are Fox News contributors. Welcome to both of you.
MARC THIESSEN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND SCHOLAR OF AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE: Good to be with you, Martha.
MACCALLUM: Good to have you.
MACCALLUM: Let me start with you, Jessica. You know, the suggestion, and it's very subtle in the way that she brings this up. And as Ed rightly points out, she then says, well, why not Jar Carney? You know, he was out front and suggested at least one element of this is that she is black and that she's a woman.
JESSICA TARLOV, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND DEMOCRATIC POLLSTER: Yes. Well, the reason it's not on Jay Carney right now is Jay Carney is not giving interviews. I mean, we haven't seen Jay Carney in a long time than she is. Right, so that's going to draw attention to you, of course. And we know that the Benghazi story line is a favorite.
TARLOV: Absolutely. I mean, Jay Carney did stand up the podium and played a role in that. And there are those who'd still want to talk about Benghazi and anytime in American life is lost it, it's a worthwhile discussion. But I think that she's being focused on because she's in the public about it, and because of the unmasking issue.
We know that there are people on both sides of the aisle who have said that the request to unmask individuals, not politically motivated, is completely appropriate. And we'll hopefully hear more on that front. But what I would say is that I don't believe this is about gender, I don't believe it's about race; I believe it's about partisanship. And that's a problem that both sides have, that we just go on these hunts constantly to tear someone down.
MACCALLUM: She's dangling it, right?
TARLOV: Well, she said, yes.
MACCALLUM: Which I think this is a mistake. She shouldn't have a theory if she didn't do something improper. That's the line of argument. That nothing that I did was improper. But once you open up that can of worms and you start to suggest, well, maybe I'm being picked on. And we get into this in a moment in terms of other women she said are in a similar category because they're, you know, involved in politics, they're in a seat of power. And Marc, let me bring you in on this. I mean, either you believe what you did is right, because it was right, and it's the policy; that's OK to do it or not.
THIESSEN: No, absolutely. And look, if Susan Rice is being criticized because she's a black woman, does that mean all the people attacking Donald Trump are doing it because he's a white male? Of course, not. Then hiding behind your identity is pathetic. It sends a signal that I have no better argument to make for myself than hiding behind my identity.
The reason Susan Rice is being criticized is because she has been serially dishonest with the American people. It started with Benghazi but it continued when he said, Bowe Bergdahl had served with honor and distinction. It continued in January when she said that Barack Obama had verifiably disarmed Syria of all of its chemical weapons, which we now know is untrue.
And then, it continued in this case when she was asked point-blank, you showed the video, she's asked point blank: do you know anything about this unmasking of Trump officials? And she said I know nothing about it. And then only later did it come out that she did know about it because she had done it. So, when you have this serial dishonesty with the American people. Guess what? People are not going to believe your excuses and they're going to come after you.
TARLOV: That's absolutely true. But I would say if someone just listens to what you just said, that statement that you made, it would seem as though nothing could be about racism, nothing can be about sexism. And we all know that that's not true. Yes, everyone opposes Donald Trump, it's not because he's a white man.
THIESSEN: It has nothing to do with and sexism or racism.
TARLOV: But the way that you frame that belittles the issues that are out there that do revolve around sexism and racism.
MACCALLUM: There is no issue regarding those things in their conversation, that's a fact. There's absolutely no evidence to support that she is being asked these questions, that she's being subpoenaed. Samantha Power is also in the same category, as is John Brennan. Neither one of them is putting forth any idea of victimization in this process. And she, herself, has made the argument, as I said initially, that she feels that what she did was absolutely proper. Now, other people have also made that argument, have also come to that defense and said there's, you know, nothing wrong to look at that.
TARLOV: But --
MACCALLUM: So, that's the problem with this defense. And it sort of -- it throws open this Pandora's Box, which, you know, many people will see as a crutch, as victimization, in a place where it's not necessary.
TARLOV: Yes. I'm just saying in reaction to what Marc said there that kind of slander identity politics in full, I think belittles the realities of how the system works for many people now. As I -- in my opening statement, I said, I don't think this is about sexism and I don't think it's racism in this particular instance and I think that she should answer all questions. I absolutely think that so we can move on. But if you think that identity politics and the role of sexism and racism in our system is not due a worthy conversation, I just firmly disagree.
MACCALLUM: But in order to claim it, you have to make some relevance. You draw some line of relevance, which we haven't seen yet.
THIESSEN: Exactly. Actually, she's the one who is belittling this issue when she hides behind her race and gender in order to cover up the fact that she did something wrong or potentially do something wrong. We know that a crime was committed here. Unlike the Russia probe, we know that a crime was committed. Mike Flynn was unmasked at Susan Rice's request and somehow, that information got him to the Washington Post. That is a crime. Now, she may not have leaked it, she said she didn't. But somehow, it made its way from her office in the West Wing, because she's not supposed to share that information, to somebody who leaked it to the Washington Post. So, we have -- America has the right to know how that happened.
MACCALLUM: She denied that she had anything to do with that. But as we say, she's been subpoenaed. So, I wanted to move this conversation to one more place here. Susan Rice also, in this interview, brought in another former National Security person into the conversation, saying in this interview, a former Bush official, Condoleezza Rice, that she, "took a lot of stuff. Not frankly, I don't think I might do the same extent I have," she said, "but that was ad hominem." Or in other words, directed at her because of who she was, not because of policy issues.
And coincidentally, earlier, at another venue, the former Advisor to President Bush, who rarely talks about politics these days, just happen to be speaking out as well about her take on President Trump. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CONDOLEEZZA RICE, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: I believe every president of the United States stands for our values, while the language may be different, and we might talk about needing to deal with policy, I think you are going to see that the views that America's interests and values are always linked will come around. And it's early days in this administration, let's remember that.
MACCALLUM: So, Susan Rice suggested that the incoming -- that she, and volunteered comparisons of Hillary Clinton and Condoleezza Rice have more to do with perhaps gender and race than policy; who they are, rather than policy. Marc.
THIESSEN: Well, first of all, I don't remember Condoleezza Rice ever blaming race or gender for how she was treated in the public domain. She never did that, like Susan Rice did. Second of all, in terms of what she just said, I think it's 100 percent right. I think that we have a -- I think what's shocking, quite frankly, is that our politics has descended so low that that's even a controversial statement, that the President of United States is working to advance American values.
I think every president of the United States, whether they are Liberal, Conservative, Republican, Democrat, is doing their best to advance the American values as they see them. I think Barack Obama was probably the worst president our country has ever had, but I think he woke up every morning trying to do good for the country as he saw it. Same is true of Donald Trump. Why can't we, as a country, just accept that these people have different views and they're trying to do their best for the country as they see fit and advance the values of our country?
MACCALLUM: good point. Jessica?
TARLOV: Yes. I mean, I don't disagree entirely, well, certainly in the rating of President Obama, but that's a whole different segment. No, I think that what Condoleezza Rice said, and honestly how she's been through the entirety of the election and afterward, she doesn't speak out that really has been completely on point, especially for moderate Republicans and those who were kind of slow to accept President Trump.
And maybe, even all of branch to the other side saying, I know, he's not saying it in a way that you're comfortable with or that used to, but his heart is in the right place. I obviously disagree with a lot of the policies that are being implemented. But I think Condoleezza Rice is an example for all of how we should be speaking about what's going on, because we've only got four years, so.
MACCALLUM: Great points. I love having you guys here. Thank you very much. Good to see you both tonight. So, tonight, Republicans elected to fix ObamaCare are scrambling for a new alternative as the day's tick by here. President Trump is working on it behind-the-scenes with our next guest.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This will be great for everybody.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why do you say if? Do you have hope that this will be across the finish line?
TRUMP: Well, I always say it. I always say it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: I always say it, just in case, you never know. Two GOP Senators, two surgeons and two totally different ideas about how to do this, coming up next. Plus, Sarah Palin has had enough; she is now going to sue the New York Times after they tried once again to link her name to the 2011 mass shooting in Arizona that wounded then-Representative Gabrielle Giffords. So, does she have a legal case here? Fascinating story on that, coming up, right after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator Schumer says he'd like to come down and have all 100 Senators coming here to talk health care. Would you be willing to negotiate with all of them?
TRUMP: I'm going to find out if he's serious. He hasn't been serious. ObamaCare is such a disaster, such a wreck. And he wants to try and save something that's really hurting a lot of people. It's hurting a lot of people. It'd have to be very, very serious. And he's done a lot of talking, bad talking, and he just doesn't seem like a serious person.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: Interesting, today. That was President Trump casting doubt on a Democrats' claim that they are really willing to compromise with Republicans on this health care issue. The Democrats aren't the only hurdle; more than half a dozen Republicans currently stand against their own party. Some of the GOPs are offering warnings about what might lie ahead. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MATT SCHLAPP, CHAIRMAN, AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE UNION: The Republicans ran for office in four elections saying that ObamaCare should be repealed. They eventually amended that to say it should be repealed and replaced. Conservatives are going to feel awfully hoodwinked, they'll be held to pay if they don't pass some version of Republican health care reform.
GRAHAM: If we don't reach an agreement by Friday, it's probably the end of a sole party effort for health care. Then, if we don't reach by Friday, then the way forward is ObamaCare collapses, challenged Democrats to work with us to plan something better.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: Joining me now, one of those standing against the bill right now: Ophthalmologist and Kentucky Senator, Rand Paul. Senator, good to have you with us, welcome to the program tonight. You are sort of the outlier in that, you have put out some proposals today that you yourself said sort of went over like a lead balloon. But many of them are about repealing in the truest sense and offering some real market reform here. So, are you surprised that you're not getting more traction with these ideas?
SEN. RAND PAUL, R-KENTUCKY: You know, I think there's a breakthrough idea. I had spoken to the president this afternoon, and he and I kind of came up with an idea that I think is really a break-through. And this would be to separate this into two bills: one bill would be the spending bill that has the -- keeping ObamaCare spending and a lot of things, the moderate one; and the other bill would be more of a repeal bill. The repeal bill would be the budget reconciliation bill that only has a simple majority. The spending bill would be a bill that actually is something that many Democrats support, such as the S-CHIP program, and you put the spending requirements that many of the moderates want on one bill.
And then, on the other bill, that's purely or more purely a repeal bill, you stick with repealing the taxes, the regulations, and some Medicaid reform, and it's a much more narrow repeal bill. And then some of the things that Republicans want that require new spending or keeping ObamaCare. If they're on a separate bill, I think you can actually make both factions of the Republican Party ultimately happy with that.
MACCALLUM: So, are you saying that you could basically pass this repeal bill that would kind of deny Democrats and also some of the moderates in your own party from the opportunity to retain the parts of ObamaCare that you don't like?
PAUL: No, they'd get it in a separate bill, is what I am saying. So, there'll be a repeal bill that I think everyone could vote for. It will repeal a certain amount of taxes, and a certain amount of the regulations, and we'd also do some Medicaid reform. But then, there'd be a separate bill for all the people who want more spending programs. Some of the moderates in our caucus want more spending.
We can put that on a bill, such as the S-CHIP, which is a bill that every Democrat in Congress typically supports. And if you separate the bills, I think you could actually get to a passage where you repeal on one bill and you actually have some of the replacement spendings on a separate bill that is one bill that Democrats would support.
MACCALLUM: You, yourself, said that you know, the proposals that you made that I mentioned when we started talking, went over like a "lead balloon," I think were your words. But then, you said, after that, you spoke to the president about this possibility of splitting the bill, how much support is there for that? Have you spoken to Mitch McConnell about this idea?
PAUL: Yes. The idea has been talked about for, I think, at least a year in private that there may be another opportunity of a separate bill that has a more bipartisan support that would include some of the spendings that some of the people in the Republican Caucus want. And I think if you separate it into two bills, I think you could get it done, really, even by Friday, you could come to an agreement.
MACCALLUM: I mean, is this an idea that's getting traction right now? I mean, what does Mitch McConnell say about this idea? Is he saying to you, you know, yes, let's push this through, and I think I can get it through?
PAUL: I don't want to characterize his response. I would say that I have discussed the idea with him previously and also discussed it in front of all of the Senators at a lunch that basically, we would have two different vehicles and that we separate the vehicles. I think this is -- it's similar to the Henry Clay compromise of 1850. They split their bill into four bills, and different majorities pass different parts of it.
This would be sort of a bifurcation into two bills: the spending, which every time you add more spending, conservatives like myself don't want to vote for more spending. And so, every time they add more deregulation, the moderates don't want to get rid of the regulation. So, why don't we separate them into two bills? One is primarily a repeal bill and another bill is primarily a spending bill. Conservatives will, in all likelihood, like myself, oppose the second bill. But it'll be spending that the Democrats have always supported.
MACCALLUM: I know, it's very interesting and I understand. Before I let you go because I'm out of time, do you think you could get the sort of eight or nine dissenting GOP votes on board with this? Can you narrow that margin to a point where it could actually pass?
PAUL: Yes, because I think there's a certain amount of repeal that everybody in the Caucus is for. All 52 are for, but not all 52 are for more spending. Separate the spending, the new spending, and put it into a bill that will likely get Democrats' support. I think you can get this over to the finish line.
MACCALLUM: By Friday?
PAUL: If you separate into two bills, I'm very confident we could. Let's see.
MACCALLUM: Let's see. All right, Senator, thank you very much. Good to see you tonight.
MACCALLUM: So, let's see. Despite Senator Paul's concerns, most Republican Senators do support this bill. But as it turns out, most voters really look like they don't. Today's Fox News polls out here show just over one and four voters support, 54 percent oppose what they know so far about the Senate measure. Joining me now is Orthopedic Surgeon and Wyoming Senator, John Barrasso. Good to have you here, Senator.
SEN. JOHN BARRASSO, R-WYOMING: Thank you, Martha. Thanks.
MACCALLUM: So, your reaction first to that poll, and then we'll get to what Senator Paul was talking about. According to this poll, the American people are not at all on board with this version.
BARRASSO: Well, let me make sure that people know exactly what is in the bill. Number one, it stabilizes the insurance markets and over the next couple of years, lowers premiums by about 30 percent; people are going to find that very popular. We eliminate all of the mandates that mandated the people had to buy a government approved product; that's very popular. We're eliminating all of the taxes, many of which drove up the costs of ObamaCare.
We're getting the decisions out of the hands of Washington and back into the hands of patients with decisions being made in the states. I would think that that is going to be very popular. And then, we make sure that with regard to Medicaid, we stabilize it in the long term for people who are most in need, also with people with pre-existing conditions. Every one of them gets to be able to keep their plan and 26-year-olds get to stay on their parent's plans up to the age of 26.
MACCALLUM: Well, I mean, basically what Rand Paul has said is that there are way too many goodies actually in this bill. He wants to split them in half. He wants to do a repeal bill and a replace bill. He said, he talked to the President about this idea and the president liked it a lot. Have you heard that? And is that something that has any traction?
BARRASSO: Well, I met with the president yesterday, along with all the Republican senators. We're not going to negotiate this on television. We're focused on fighting the 50 votes that we need to be able to make the fundamental change of rescuing people from ObamaCare. The prices have gone up, the options have gone down, and many people are finding themselves with only one choice on the ObamaCare exchange for next year. Many places; no one is selling ObamaCare.
MACCALLUM: I hear you. No, I do.
BARRASSO: ObamaCare is a bus going over a cliff. The Democrats are saying, stay on board. And I'm saying, we're just trying to rescue people from this collapsing ObamaCare debacle.
MACCALLUM: Senator, what I'm hearing and what you're saying is that you're willing to let the Rand Paul vote go by the wayside. Is that true?
BARRASSO: I want to work with every member. We're trying to get to 50, with Mike Pence being there as vice president. I think Rand Paul has been very constructive. He's been in all of the meetings. We continue to discuss this. We need all of the members on board because we are all committed to fundamentally changing the direction of health care away from this one-size-fits-all government control and getting the decisions back to home.
I was in Wyoming over the weekend. I was a doctor for 25 years practicing in Wyoming, talking to patients, talking to doctors, talking nurses at one of our local hospitals. They all want out of what has become ObamaCare.
MACCALLUM: All right, thank you very much. Senator Barrasso, always good to speak with you, thanks for being here.
BARRASSO: Thanks for having me.
MACCALLUM: So, coming up, protesters make their claim in D.C. as the battle rages over exactly what this would look like in the end.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think the Senate will produce a bill that's as extreme as what came out of the House.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: So, is the bill, the victim of bad policy or unfair media treatment? Dana Perino and Chris Stirewalt here on that, coming up. Plus, another day, another media retraction of a story involving President Donald Trump; a must hear an update on the story of an alleged feud between the president and the happiest place on Earth. Look at all of those wacky presidents. We'll be right back.
MACCALLUM: So, is it for policy or is it unfair treatment? Compared to the early days of ObamaCare, the Republicans' health care reformed seems to be taking some harder hits from the media. Trace Gallagher explains live from our West Coast Newsroom. Hi, Trace.
TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CHANNEL ANCHOR: Hi, Martha! You know, this isn't just the tomato/tomato debate. There are stark differences in the way how the GOP health care bill is being covered today versus how ObamaCare was covered eight years ago. For example, when the Affordable Care Act passed in 2009, the three major networks called it "historic." When the GOP health bill passed the House last month, the same networks labeled it "risky." Now, we're not saying the GOP bill is the magic potion for what ails the country, but it is also accurate to point out that ObamaCare is struggling and the numbers bear that out. In October, President Obama's own health and human services department estimated that premiums in 39 states would rise by an average of 29 percent. HHS said some states like Arizona would see rates jump 116 percent. Health pocket, which is nonpartisan consumer insurance comparison site, says nationwide, health insurance deductibles for the lowest level plans will jump 21 percent this year alone. And of course, when costs go up, insurers get out.
A few weeks ago, Anthem announced it was pulling out of Ohio. And the Ohio department of insurance says that means, next year, 20 percent of the counties in the buckeye state will have zero insurers selling individual plans. But as an op-ed and the hill pointed out, quoting CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, and ABC World News Tonight, we're left with the impression that ObamaCare was a popular law that was humming along. And here's a sample of network coverage then and now. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: The health care debacle is especially devastating, given what the president said during the campaign.
UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: His first major piece of legislation went down in flames.
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: A critical milestone was reached overnight in the government's bid to overhaul the nation's health care system. Today, the president and many of his fellow Democrats are celebrating last night's passage of the house, by the house, of a health care reform bill.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GALLAGHER: And did you hear that? Health care reform. The conservative media research center says in the three months leading up to the passage of ObamaCare, the networks called it reform 344 times. In the three months leading up to yesterday's delayed vote of the GOP health bill, it was called reform 30 times. Martha.
MACCALLUM: Very interesting. Trace, thank you. So here now with more, Dana Perino, former White House press secretary and co-host of "The Five," Chris Stirewalt, Fox News politics editor. Welcome to you both.
DANA PERINO, THE FIVE CO-HOST: Thank you.
MACCALLUM: So some very different ways of presenting this, Dana.
PERINO: There are, and there's also different ways of selling it. So when they were talking about it being historic, President Obama, if you recall, gave 53 speeches over that 16 month period, and he detailed it out and he would try to get his Democrats all to be with him. And this time, that is not actually been the case. And now the Republicans have benefited from ObamaCare at the ballot box. They won in 2010. In the congress, 14, and I think that ObamaCare, remember those rates that came out in October of 2016? So I do think the Republicans have benefited from ObamaCare failing. Now, they have to decide how they're going to sell this one.
And I think that they'll probably feel like that they've talked about it a lot. But there is something about the president and his ability to reassure people and their anxiety, for example -- there's an example in my life, I see somebody a couple of times a week to work out. He buys on the independent market. He says, all I want to know is, well my rates go down? I can't guarantee that, I don't really know.
MACCALLUM: No one knows.
PERINO: Nobody actually knows that. But that's actually what people, if you look at the polls that we're looking at today, the anxiety is what is fueling these numbers descent.
MACCALLUM: Yeah, absolutely.
PERINO: And I think the president could reassure them and maybe he will if he gets out there and give a speech.
MACCALLUM: There's a bit of a vacuum, Chris, because, you know, President Obama did present ObamaCare and sell to the country, as Dana says. What we have heard from President Trump is, you know, we're going to get this terrific thing through. And people have no idea how it's going to impact them.
CHRIS STIREWALT, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, and also, to Dana's point, he also tells them that ObamaCare is failing. He might just let it fail. There's catastrophe everywhere. Dogs and cats sleeping together, the world -- everything is going to fall apart. It's a total catastrophe. And we don't know if we'll be able to pass it. So understandably, people would be nervous. Beyond that, Republicans don't seem to like the bill. They don't seem to like their own bill. And they're doing it in this spirit of, sort of, high-minded regret or resignation. Yes, we have to do this. And it's not his story.
What it is, is bailing out ObamaCare in the short term, and then making some trims, cutting the rates of increase in out years to make it more fiscally sensible. That's it. This is not something that they're particularly proud of. This is not something particularly excited about. Unfortunately, for them, they're the ones who have to vote for it.
PERINO: But it is something that they need. They need to have something that they have acted upon in order to go home and talk about it. It is easier and better for them to defend something back home, to say, this is why we voted for it, these are the good parts, rather than trying to explain in action. And I think that they're hearing that from the congressional committee in particular.
MACCALLUM: We have seen it in the polls already in the recent months. It's the one issue that people are really dissatisfied about among Republicans is health care because they want to see it happen.
PERINO: And yet, they trust Republicans on the economy by a long shot over Democrats. And the two are really inextricably linked. It's not 1/7 of the economy or 1/6 of the economy. So the Republicans have an opportunity here.
And perhaps, what Mitch McConnell has done and said, I'm going to give this some breathing room, I'm going to figure out a way to get to yes before August 1st recess.
MACCALLUM: We'll see. I want to squeeze in one more topic here with you guys. This is a tweet from Jim Acosta. So off to the issue now of the press and how they are covering this presidency. He says, Sarah Huckabee Sanders taking questions from reporters at a White House briefing. Video of this has been banned by the United States of America. I also want to put up a quote from Mike McCurry and Ari Fleischer, both former press secretaries at the White House, of course. And they wrote this in January, and very interesting. They said, we recommend the president, Trump, keep the press briefing but no longer make it a live televised event. The briefing today has become an occasion for too much posturing on both sides of the camera. The president spokesman should and must be available for questioning, especially in those days when the president schedule is not include a public appearance. Bipartisan press secretaries, Dana, saying, you don't need to do that, really.
PERINO: But they're very specific in saying it shouldn't be live. They do say that it should be on video and it could be embargoed and it's all going to get out there. I think that that's fine. I actually thought that the briefing was a good tool. And yeah, it's difficult and sometimes you've got to suck it up and do it because, you know, there are some showboaters in the room. But I actually think that everybody in the room, for the most part, tries their best and everyone can actually do a little bit better. These are jobs that are really wonderful. To be in the White House at the podium or in those seats, asking questions, America deserves a little better from everybody I think. Whether the videos are embargoed our life, I'm not sure it really matters. I hope the 2:00 anchor.
PERINO: I never actually get to do a show.
MACCALLUM: Chris, what do you think?
STIREWALT: I don't think right now is a particularly good look for either side. We have a tendency to see political conflicts as zero-sum games. There's got to be a winner. There's got to be a loser. I think in this case both sides are losing because it looks like the administration is ashamed of itself, and then reporters are out there -- I mean, the banned in the USA, come on.
PERINO: It's a little overdramatic. But, you know, Mike McCurry will be the first to say that he didn't want to make the briefings live, but technology advance that way. And I think it's really hard now to -- in a world of Facebook live and tweeting live is very hard.
MACCALLUM: Obviously, it's toothpaste and tube, but.
MACCALLUM: Thank you, guys, great to see you. So still ahead here tonight, next time you visit a McDonald's, a robot may be asking you to supersize it. So what does this mean? This is scary stuff, folks. The economy -- our world is changing so dramatically. James Rosen did an amazing bit of reporting on this and he joins me in just a moment. Also, Sarah Palin versus fake news. What the former Alaskan government just did to take a very strong stand against the New York Times.
MACCALLUM: Sarah Palin is taking legal action against the New York Times, suing the paper for defamation. Following an op-ed that they ran, since retracted, that falsely linked her to the 2011 mass shootings that included former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords. Prior to the correction, this is how it read. The link to political incitement was clear. Before the shooting, Sarah Palin's political action committee circulated a map of targeted electoral districts that put Ms. Giffords and 19 other Democrats under stylized crosshairs. They since corrected that, in a way. So, does she have a case here? Bringing in Austan Goolsbee, former chief economist under President Obama, Charlie Hurt is political columnist for the Washington Times, and a Fox News contributor, say Charles on his bio, we call him Charlie. So welcome to you both. Austan, let me start with you. Do you think she has a case here?
AUSTAN GOOLSBEE, FORMER CHIEF ECONOMIST UNDER PRESIDENT OBAMA: Look, I'm not a lawyer, but it just feels to me like she might have gotten poor legal advice. I publicly said that the New York Times editorial was a vast overstatement and that she deserves an apology. Eventually, she got one. They should have been more forthcoming with it at the beginning. But to move then to defamation, I think by the standards -- if this were defamation, then, Barack Obama, for sure, would have the grounds to sue Governor Palin for defamation for what she said about there being death panels in the ACA, or for what she said about his Hiroshima speech, that she claimed he had apologized for U.S. involvement in World War II. None of which were true. I think we all need to take a step back and recognize that in the marketplace of ideas, they're going to be people who say dumb things, offensive things, over statements like the one in this New York Times editorial. But that doesn't mean that we should engage in kind of snowflake lawsuits and say, you owe me hundreds of millions dollars because I was offended.
MACCALLUM: I mean you raise a number of interesting points, which is no surprise. But one of them is, what's the responsibility of a newspaper, even though this is an editorial comment. They didn't actually apologize to her. They retracted it and amended it, but there was never an actual apology, which might have saved them some of this lawsuit and some of this trouble perhaps. But then, there is the issue, Charlie, you know, you're a public figure, you go out there and you say all kinds of inflammatory things on both sides, do you have the ability given that reality in your life to actually sue someone when they come back at do?
CHARLIE HURT, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I kind of agree with Austan with this one respect. She's probably not going to be successful. But I don't think this was a legal move in the first place. It's a political move. She's winning it very nicely. What she's trying to do is highlight the fact that the New York Times was horribly reckless with this editorial. And highlight, I think the unfairness that they show more often with Republicans than they do with Democrats. She's winning on all of that. There's purposefully a very high bar for suing public officials, especially politicians because we cherish a raucous and freewheeling press and that's a good thing. But I don't think it was a legal move. I think it was entirely designed to embarrass the New York Times and she succeeded.
MACCALLUM: But the differences here, Austan, in my mind, when you look at it, you know, it's not just saying she's a terrible person. We think she's a lousy politician. We think she's awful, whatever you want to say. They tied a specific pamphlet to an event that was proven not to have any connection, so that's a little bit different, isn't it?
GOOLSBEE: It might be.
MACCALLUM: Is it fake news?
GOOLSBEE: The flyer itself was not in very good taste, I thought, to put literally a gun crosshairs on the site. I don't think that it was caused, a cause of a mad man to go down and actually shoot some people.
MACCALLUM: No, he said he had never seen it, wasn't aware of it at all in fact.
HURT: And he was obsessed with her for a long time.
GOOLSBEE: Yes. And so, I just think, it doesn't make it different, from a legal standpoint. I think Charlie's point is an interesting one. I hadn't thought about it. It does seem like as a political gesture, being able to say, I sued the New York Times for defamation that might succeed. But on legal grounds, I don't think, if the New York Times said it was our opinion that that was true and she's a public figure, I guess I don't understand.
MACCALLUM: It established to not be true. Gentlemen, thank you very much. Good to see you both tonight. So coming up next, a must hear update on the story of alleged feud between the president and the happiest place on earth. How could this be happening? Plus, James Rosen is here with a really important look into the future. James?
JAMES ROSEN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Martha, when the robots take all of our jobs, maybe even yours and mine, should the government step in and give us all a paycheck to make ends meet? Stay tuned.
MACCALLUM: So an update to a story that we brought you last night about a report that there was drama between the White House and Disney world over President Trump's hall of presidents debut. Well, Vice Media, who originally reported that it has retracted to two stories, they say after investigating the sources, they found several factual errors. No word on when President Trump will make his Disney debut. We'll keep you in suspense. We'll let you know as soon as we get more information on that breaking news story. So now, time for our back story tonight, last week, we told you about the robots that are on the rise at McDonald's, and they're likely, not the only company, definitely not the only company to be doing this, the growing trend now sparking a discussion on guaranteed income for Americans. Is that something that the country will need? Joining us now to explain, James Rosen, who I assure you is not a robot, he is a live human being, and he does not have mandatory compensation yet. James, good evening.
ROSEN: I am subject to glitches from time to time. Martha, good evening to you. Whether a universal basic income would replace the social safety net already provided by state and federal governments, or would supplement it is just one of the many critical aspects of this plan that arouses debate, but the concept of a guaranteed income is undeniably experiencing a revival of sorts. Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, endorse the idea in his Harvard commencement address last month, and Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, has spoken in favor of it twice in recent months. With some credible projections forecasting 40 to 50 percent of all jobs in the U.S. today will be eliminated due to automation within the next 10 to 15 years. Futurists, labor market analyst, and leading CEO's are asking, what will become of all of those workers displaced by technology and whether society at large?
Seeking stability in such a radically transformed economic environment, might not benefit from some orderly redistribution of wealth? An additional question is whether federal agencies like DARPA, the Pentagon's advanced research projects agency should be using taxpayer funds to pursue robotics, and the very projects that will displace those taxpayers from their jobs.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: The challenge, I think for public policy, is to make sure that workers are equipped to work in the new kinds of jobs that the economy is creating. I think the wrong course of action is to throw in the towel and say, well, there is simply nothing that can be done, and there is going to be this large, large segment of society that can't contribute in the labor market.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROSEN: One modern president of the United States has actually proposed a guaranteed income, it was Richard Nixon, who had fallen under the seduction of his liberal advisor, Daniel Patrick Moynihan. They unveiled something called the family assistance plan back in 1970. It died in the senate, Martha.
MACCALLUM: All right, it's fascinating. I mean, just to reiterate one sentence of what you said, in the next decade, 40 to 50 percent of the jobs that we now know, will disappear and be replaced by robots. It's just stunning, James.
ROSEN: Yes, it is. And it's not that far away from now. It's only about 13 years. What's striking to me is that we've heard so much about jobs from Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the 2016 campaign cycle. In their three presidential debates, one word that never came up, jobs was uttered 86 time between the two of them. The word automation never came up.
MACCALLUM: Yeah, stunning. And the idea that you might need to give people sort of a basic income to get through this period of huge Tummel in the jobs market is stunning and shocking. James, thank you so much, great report tonight. Thanks for being here.
ROSEN: Thank you, Martha.
MACCALLUM: So coming up next, a novel question, recommitting to civility on Capitol Hill. How an unlikely bond may lead us to the answer, when we come back with a quote of the night.
MACCALLUM: Senator Orrin Hatch with our quote of the night. In an essay he writes about the deep division in our nation and his determination to fix it. He uses this example as a way forward. He says, I'm grateful for the late Senator Ted Kennedy, who taught me that the bonds of friendship are stronger than any partisan poll. When I first joined the senate, I thought Teddy would be an adversary. Instead, we became the best of friends. Teddy and I were a case study and contradictions. He was born in privilege. I was brought up in poverty. He was an east coast liberal, I was a Reagan conservative. He was a catholic, I was a Mormon. Yet, time and again, we were able to look past our differences and find areas of agreement and forge consensus. My unlikely friendship with Ted Kennedy is a small example of what our nation can accomplish if we choose respect and comity over anger and discord. Only by doing so can we look beyond the horizon of our differences and find common ground. The rest of that piece is recommended reading tonight. That's his story. We would like to hear yours. Tweet us at @thestoryFNC using the hashtag #thestory. Thanks for being with us tonight. We'll be back here tomorrow night at 7:00. We look forward to seeing you then. Tucker Carlson comes up next.
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