Transcript

Rep. Mark Meadows on separating repeal and replace bills

House Freedom Caucus chairman weighs in on 'The Story with Martha MacCallum'

 

This is a rush transcript from "The Story," June 30, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, "THE STORY" HOST: Good evening, everybody. I'm Martha MacCallum, and this is THE STORY. It is summer, it is hot and as you have noticed tempers are rising and the swamp is mucky and it is gross. But before we get to that, could it be that while the media and the water cooler is full of celebrity smack downs in the Twitter-verse, there is some actual draining going on in the swamp. Note this piece in the Wall Street Journal today that claims that under Rex Tillerson and the State Department, and Scott Pruitt at EPA, entrenched bureaucrats are packing their boxes and going home that some in the swamp are actually happy to see some corporate theories applied to their workplaces.

Here's part of James Freeman's piece: "But like so much of the Beltway bureaucracy, State has been overfunded and undermanaged for years. Now, despite what you may have read about untouchable bureaucrats, unaccountable to the public they're supposed to serve, Mr. Tiller's has found ways to clean house." He goes on to say this, "Do taxpayers dare to dream? As odd as this sound for regular observers of the federal leviathan, the new boss seems to be imposing the kind of tough measures often seen at struggling companies, but almost never witnessed at government departments that have lost their way."

And then, there is this: news that Senator Claire McCaskill is getting the swamp draining bug as well, now blasting the Obama phone program that was supposed to provide cell phones to folks who couldn't afford them. We all remember this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody in Cleveland got an Obama phone. Keep up Obama as president, you know, he gave us a phone.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, that got a lot of play. As you remember during the 2012 election, McCaskill is now saying that the program according to the JAO was a $9 billion fraud. That while 10.6 million got phones, 36 percent of them didn't qualify; many got two phones, and 6400 phones went to dead people. Swampy, right? In a moment, we will be joined by Eric Bolling who wrote a book about "All Those Such Things," along with Molly Hemingway and Chris Stirewalt to weigh in on this all of the week's big news and the swampiest story: the-can-you-top-this-insults in Twitter-land and beyond. But first, we go to the White House where Chief National Correspondent Ed Henry brings us up to speed on all that happened there today. Good evening, Ed.

ED HENRY, FOX NEWS CHANNEL CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Martha, good to see. On top of all those other things as you pointed out that President Trump is grappling with here in Washington right now, today he welcomed President Moon of South Korea here to the White House. And frankly, the president declared, flat out, that his patience has run out with North Korea, that basically, his top U.S. Commander's present military options to the Commander-in-Chief because they now believe the Communist regime can reach North America. That's right; reach North America with an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile that has a nuclear warhead; the president laying the stakes out today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Together we are facing the threat of the reckless and brutal regime in North Korea. The nuclear and ballistic missile programs of that regime require a determined response.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HENRY: Yet the president also found the time, yes, to respond, fire back at an op-ed from Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, and MSNBC, alleging that top White House Aides recently warned them. The National Enquirer was preparing a negative story about them and the only way they could spike it was by apologizing to the president because he's close to the man who runs the Enquirer. Now, the president tweeted "Watched low-rated 'Morning Joe' for the first time in a long time. Fake news. He called me to stop a National Enquirer article. I said no! Bad show."

Scarborough, quickly firing back himself, "Yet another lie. I have texts from your Top Aides," he said to the president, "and phone records. Also, those records show I haven't spoken with you in many months." We are told, though, that Scarborough did speak with, text with the president's son-in- law and a top White House Aide, Jared Kushner. And while Scarborough was hinting he was blackmailed, pressured, a source suggested that all Kushner did was tell Scarborough, talk to the president directly about all of this.

When the host replied, the president was mad at him, Kushner simply suggested he apologized to patch things up. We're told that was not a quid pro quo, but just, let's calm it down. Either way, the Enquirer went with the June 5th story aimed at the T.V. couples romance and longtime Media Analyst Bernie Goldberg says, "There's just too much drama here."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BERNIE GOLDBERG, FOX NEWS CHANNEL MEDIA ANALYST: I'm just sick of both sides. They both have to start to act like grown-ups. The president does, and Joe Scarborough and Mika who are being portrayed as somehow innocent victims of all of this, you don't call the president of the United States so schmuck on national television and get away with that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HENRY: Now, Goldberg added that it appears to him that Joe and Mika have what he calls Trump Derangement Syndrome. Though, Goldberg added, they're just hosts on T.V.; Donald Trump is the president. Martha.

MACCALLUM: There you have it. Ed, thank you so much. So, let's bring in Chris Stirewalt, Fox News politics editor; Molly Hemingway, Senior Editor at the Federalist and Fox News contributor; and Eric Bolling, co-host of the "Fox News Specialists" and author of the brand new book, the appropriately named "The Swamp." Welcome, to all of you. So, there was a lot in there in our open today. So, I'm going to let you pick, you know, what you like and what touches you as you look back at this week. And Molly, let me start with you.

MOLLY HEMINGWAY, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND SENIOR EDITOR AT THE FEDERALIST: Well, I'm thinking maybe it's not such a bad idea that the media are spending so much time covering this Twitter battle between the president and Joe and Mika, because it's just wasting time talking about media personalities that we don't care about. The media have been doing a really bad job when they're covering other issues, whether it's making up stories about Russia collusion or calling Republicans murders for trying to reform ObamaCare or for anything else that they try and do. So, maybe it's fine that they spend all this time on a story that doesn't matter.

MACCALLUM: Chris, what do you think?

CHRIS STIREWALT, FOX NEWS POLITICS EDITOR: I'm just struck by the waste of it all, just the sad ways. I mean, we're getting ready to celebrate a wonderful anniversary of our independence, so what are we doing with that freedom? We have 241 years and what are we doing with the freedom and the answer, in part, we're doing a lot of wonderful things. And I don't want to give the impression that this country isn't doing great things and that greatness is not happening every second of every day in America, but the fact that we have the Commander-in-Chief of the United States, the guy who's got George Washington's job locked in a petty fight with cable news hosts. Not that there's anything wrong with being a cable news host, but you have this petty --

MACCALLUM: Some of my best friends are cable news host.

STIREWALT: Some of my very best friends are cables news host that we have this petty, pointless fight going on. It's so unworthy of our heritage and so unworthy of the gifts of liberty bestowed upon us.

MACCALLUM: I think it's a great point. Pull up this poll Fox: are you proud of your country today? 51 percent say, yes. Back in 2011, it was 69 percent. How about this? Will the founding fathers be proud of our country today? 16 percent say, yes; 79percent say, no. You know, when you look at day two, Eric, of this story, I am struck, you know, this morning I woke up, I watched, you know, what happened on "MORNING JOE." I sort of took it all in and I thought to myself, you know what; this is like navel gazing egoism at its absolute worst. And I agree with what Chris said, it starts in the White House but, you know, no one is without fault in this particular story. There are all kinds of ugly stuff getting thrown around about our country, about the president every single day. And you know, talk about the swamp, it feels icky-icky.

ERIC BOLLING, FOX NEW HOST: It is icky-icky. But look what we're doing; we're covering it as well. I mean, there were some major, major accomplishments by the Trump administration this week. We had to immigration bills that passed the House on their way to the Senate. Those are major victories. Kate's Law, I would say 80 percent of the people watching right now think Kate's Law is a major win for the country.

MACCALLUM: By the way, we are covering that story tonight. We've covered it last night as well.

BOLLING: And I agree, but the mainstream media is not. You know what the mainstream media is talking about? You know what all the other cable networks are talking about? You know what the evening news is going to cover. And you know what all the print newspapers are going to do; they're going to cover the tweet fight between it Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski and Donald Trump.

MACCALLUM: But that's because they live in this very insular world of celebrity reality T.V. show craziness that most people in America cannot relate to and do not care about it all.

BOLLING: Which explains why I think Donald Trump should continue to tweet because they are going to cover whatever --

MACCALLUM: Not like that.

BOLLING: Well, maybe not. I don't know. Maybe; maybe not.

MACCALLUM: You don't know?

BOLLING: I don't. I really don't. Chris, you can go "huh" all you want, but this is --

MACCALLUM: That's not helpful to his mission at all.

BOLLING: This is what put Donald Trump on the map, and put Donald Trump in the White House. Because he didn't act like a typical politician; he acted like Donald Trump. Guess what, this wasn't misogyny or him taking a shot at Mika Brzezinski. This was Donald Trump, who throughout the campaign, as a campaigner, and now the president says what's on his mind via Twitter and I'm all for it. I'm not all for insulting people. I do, however, he needs to do it. But I think that Donald Trump, the commander-in-chief, letting the world know what he's thinking on a daily basis is a good thing.

MACCALLUM: Let's hear from Chris on that. Go ahead, Chris.

STIREWALT: There's no reason for the president to waste the hard effort of his supporters, of the people, of the millions, the tens of millions of Americans who voted for him, some over serious objections that they had, the donors, the volunteers. This is a guy who had a great week. He had a wonderful week. You'd come off a majority win --

BOLLING: He did. He still did.

STIREWALT: Yes, hold on. And you go through all of this stuff and he's doing so well and everything's going great and people say, maybe this is going to work, and he says, hold on. Watch this. I bet I can derail this narrative. I bet that I can derail this narrative in a series of 140-word characters.

BOLLING: Let me re-rail the narrative for a second, Chris.

STIREWALT: Nobody is saying. Eric, hold on a second.

BOLLING: Nothing's changed in the economy between yesterday and today.

STIREWALT: Hold on a second.

BOLLING: Wager is still higher. The stock market is still 18 percent higher.

STIREWALT: Good grief, Eric.

BOLLING: You can roll your eyes all you want, Chris, but you're playing into the mainstream media narrative of pointing out and highlighting and focusing in --

MACCALLUM: Eric, there's only one person who focused and highlighted on something that we have all been talking about for a few days, and that was President Trump. And you say there are so many good things and there are plenty of good things. And we really make an effort all the time to point out the good things as we just did in the opening to this program that is happening out there.

BOLLING: Well, I was expecting for Chris Stirewalt to jump in and say, you know what, the economy is popping on all cylinders and that's great for the American people, instead of worrying about what Donald Trump tweeted about Mika and Joe.

HEMINGWAY: One of the things that the American people like about Donald Trump is that he is willing to take on a media that have been cartoonishly hostile to Republicans for decades, in the face of Republicans who just take it and don't do anything. So, I think that's part of the perspective that's needed here. And this was, I don't like what Trump did. I also don't like what Joel and Mika do where they insult his intelligence when they say he's crazy, when they assassinate his character and what not.

This is also part of the story and a lot of Americans are frustrated beyond belief, but it also shows how D.C. and New York-centric our media are. There were a lot of things that happen throughout the country, you know, whether it's the shooting of the San Antonio police officer or what's happening with the Chicago Gang Task Force. These things affect people's lives deeply but we always tend to focus on what's happening on the island of Manhattan and inside the beltway.

MACCALLUM: Absolutely. Very well put. Last word, Chris Stirewalt and we got to go.

STIREWALT: Everybody ought to be a little nicer to each other, everybody ought to behave themselves in a little bit better and people ought to be more worthy of our heritage.

MACCALLUM: Well said. Happy Fourth of July, all of you, thank you very much for being here. Lots ahead tonight, an old idea is new again as Senators are struggling to find the votes to overhaul ObamaCare. Suggests this:

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Separate bills, makes it easier logistically to pass the repeal bill.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Marc Thiessen, Mo Elleithee, here on whether that could actually happen. And Kate's Law, we were just talking about that, pass the House. But if you watch network news last night, you may have missed this story. Still ahead, a strong message from a mother who lost her son to an illegal immigrant criminal, on why we need to know about Kate Steinle when we come back.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A the trial, the killer got on the stand and said that he systematically murdered and tortured Joshua to death and set him on fire after death.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So, some Senate Republicans were baffled by this tweet from the president, which stated that he has a reinvigorated interest in splitting the health care bill into two bills. "If Republican Senators aren't able to pass what they're working on now," he wrote, "they should immediately repeal and then replace at a later date." We know from talking to Senator Rand Paul here that he and Trump have been talking.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. RAND PAUL, R-KENTUCKY: I spoke with the president this afternoon, and he and I kind of came up with an idea that I think is really a breakthrough, and this would be to separate this into two bills.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, here's what the president said about this in the past.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And there's going to be a period if you repeal it and before you replace it when millions of people could lose it.

TRUMP: We will do it simultaneously, it will be just fine.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, you can see why this is causing a bit of consternation on the Hill. Joining me now Chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, North Carolina Congressman: Mark Meadows. Congressman, good to see you tonight, welcome back to THE STORY.

REP. MARK MEADOWS, R-NC, HOUSE FREEDOM CAUCUS CHAIRMAN: Good to see you. Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: What do you think about that?

MEADOWS: You know, really, when you look at where Senator Rand Paul is and actually where the president has been, it's all about repealing and replacing. He's committed to doing that. Perhaps, what is missing is the fact that Senator Paul is talking about doing it with two separate vehicles. The president has tried to combine that with one, but whether you do it with two separate vehicles or one, as long as you have a long enough glide path.

And right now, in the bill that most senators voted on in 2015, that was a two-year glide path that allowed us to work on a replacement plan to make sure that there is no American that goes uncovered. And so, you know, I think the president is very frustrated with the fact that the Senate is not delivering, but even now, as we speak, there are deliberations going on; CBO scores being taken to try to see if they can come to some conclusion.

MACCALLUM: So, let me ask you, if the Senate were, it doesn't look like that it's possible, but if they were to split them up, of course, the big fear is that then the replacement would never happen. A lot of people would be left in the lurch, in the middle and that Republicans would be blamed for that. Is this idea of splitting the bill something that would gain traction if it came back to the House in that form? With the Freedom Caucus, start with your own group.

MEADOWS: With our own group, I can tell you, our original attack was to actually do it in two separate bills. We said why don't we put the same thing on President Trump's desk that we put on Obama's desk that he vetoed and then go along with that? I can tell you that we're so close right now. We're one or two Senators away from getting a deal. I'm hopeful the next 48 hours bring some of them together. But if not, I do believe that if we separate that out, you'll get real strong support in the House; 218 votes, hopefully, that 51 thresholds in the Senate.

But then, it's incumbent upon us to make sure there is a replacement part. And could you attach it to a transportation bill? Some other must-pass piece of legislation, where you finally get some Democrats to help us. Chuck Schumer has said he's not going to help with anything, but perhaps, when you put it on roads and bridges that are important to all of us, they'll change their tune.

MACCALLUM: Very interesting, Congressman, thank you very much. Good to have you with us.

MEADOWS: Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: Have a great Fourth of July.

MEADOWS: You too.

MACCALLUM: All right. Joining me now with some more: Marc Thiessen, American Enterprise Fellow and served as Chief Speechwriter to President George W. Bush; and Mo Elleithee, Founding Executive Director of Georgetown University's Institute of Politics and Public Service, both are Fox News Contributors. Gentlemen, welcome. Good to have you here. That was interesting. Marc Thiessen, it sounds like even on the House side, there is some opening among the House Freedom Caucus to this idea of splitting this thing in two. Good idea or not?

MARC THIESSEN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND FORMER CHIEF SPEECHWRITER TO PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Terrible idea. And nothing would make Mo and the Democrats happier than if the Republicans went ahead and did that. Here's the reason why: ObamaCare is imploding right now and the Democrats own it. Every time that there's a state that announces like in Ohio, Anthem just announced that it's pulling out and there are 20 counties that have no ObamaCare exchanges available. Democrats own that.

When premiums go up they own that, Democrats own that. If Republicans then repeal but don't replace, all of the sudden what's going to happen is the insurance Markets are going to meltdown, millions of people are going to get pushed out of their care and Republicans will own it and rightly so because they will have done it. And Congressman Meadows' mentioned this glide path when, you know, in the bill, they're talking about where there will be a year where you can work on replacements that wouldn't take effect for a year.

We're supposed to be the party of the free market, so we should understand that insurers are going to look at a bill saying, ObamaCare is over in a year, we're out. They're not going to wait. They're not going to give us the magic way to keep ObamaCare in place for a year while working out a deal. They're just going to get out and move on to their business. So, this is an insane idea that is the best thing that could ever happen to Democrats.

MACCALLUM: What do you think? So, you like it a lot huh, Mo?

MO ELLEITHEE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND FOUNDING EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY'S INSTITUTE OF POLITICS AND PUBLIC SERVICE: Other than Marc's initial characterization of ObamaCare, everything else afterward I agree with. I mean, this is just politically baffling to me. I guess it makes sense in the sense that Republicans, who are mostly concerned about their base voters who want repeal at all costs, they can say they did that. But it's those base voters who also are going to feel the brunt of what Marc was just talking about, first and hardest.

And we see that even in the polling where most Americans, including most Republicans and the Independents, are incredibly uncomfortable with the idea of repeal with no replacement at all. Especially, against the backdrop of ObamaCare's popularity actually growing in recent months. So, you're taking away something that people are starting to like a little bit more and replacing it with nothing? Add to that now the conflict between the Republican Caucus, right? A year from now, if they don't have a replacement, then it's all, hell, breaks loose, but even -- and there's no guarantee they will when you've got Senate Conservatives and Senate Moderates in very different places.

MACCALLUM: You know, I go back to a point that we talked about before Marc, which is -- I think it's pretty shocking to Republicans, that Republicans had all these years in the wilderness of sort of saying, gee, we want to repeal ObamaCare. And still at this late date, now they're saying, well, maybe we can figure it out over the next 48 hours. How can they have not gotten together? And said, you know what, if this ever happens and we get a Republican in the White House, we are so ready to go with this plan. I mean, it's ridiculous. No corporation could ever function that way.

THIESSEN: I agree with you 100 percent, but there is a complicating factor for Republicans, which is that there are some people who just want to appeal ObamaCare and they have to take into account the fact they want to pretend that it never existed. And the fact is the Medicaid expansion took place; millions of people got health care through the Medicaid expansion and you have to find a way to transition those people out of it. You're going to reform Medicaid -- I'm all for in favor of the Medicaid reforms in the bill.

You have to find a way to transition those people out of Medicaid into private insurance with these tax credits that the Republicans are creating. And that cost money, you can't just do that for free and some people don't want to spend it. They've got -- at this bill, there is a $700 billion tax increase for the rich. For people making over $250,000, a year paid for by $777 billion in Medicaid cuts for the poor.

That's monstrous. We should be using some of that money to help fix ObamaCare -- not fix ObamaCare, transition people out of ObamaCare into private insurance so that they don't lose their health care because Republicans came in and took everything away.

MACCALLUM: Quick final thought, Mo, and then I got to go.

ELLEITHEE: Yes. I totally agree with what Marc just said. I mean, the way Republicans are acting -- they're acting like caricatures of themselves, right? Everything that Democrats says Republicans are, they are reinforcing it with this approach. I think it's very politically dangerous for Republicans.

MACCALLUM: Thanks, guys, good to see you.

THIESSEN: Thank you.

ELLEITHEE: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: So, still ahead tonight, Governors refusing to cooperate with a voter fraud investigation that was ordered by President Trump. We're going to investigate what they may be wanting to hide here. Plus, big developments in President Trump's crackdown on illegal immigration was barely mentioned on the network broadcast. Up next, we ask, why? When Laura Wilkerson, whose son was killed by an illegal immigrant, and Pablo Manriquez join us. Don't go away, we will be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So, it's considered a big win for the Trump administration as House Republicans took action to crackdown on illegal immigrants and the cities that shelter them with two big pieces of legislation. But last night's network news dedicated just 25 seconds of their coverage to the passage of the long disputed Kate's law while spending 10 minutes on Trump's feud with MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski. This is Law Enforcement Officials tell Fox News that these efforts, they believe, will make cities safer. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARK SPENCER, FORMER POLICE OFFICER, PHOENIX: When we eliminated our sanctuary city policy back in about 2008, we saw a crime, at least violent crime and stolen vehicles dropped by 20-25 percent. We saw a 20-year low crime rate.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Joining me now: Laura Wilkerson, her son was killed by an illegal immigrant back in 2010; and Pablo Manriquez, Democratic Strategist, and K-Street Media Co-Founder. Good to have both of you with us this evening. Laura, let me start with you. First, your thoughts on the passage of this law and what it means for you and other so-called angel families who have lost children to criminal, illegal immigrants.

LAURA WILKERSON, MOTHER OF SON KILLED BY AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT: It means everything to us. It means public safety for the future of other people. You know, nothing will bring back our children, but this is common sense public safety. It should have been done a long time ago. And we're so grateful. It was such an exciting day yesterday for all of our family members that this has now passed. And we hope it to pass the Senate.

MACCALLUM: Pablo, what was your reaction to the passage of these two pieces of legislation. And you heard in that piece just moments ago the statistics about how removing those sanctuary city rules has made several city safer.

PABLO MANRIQUEZ, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Ordinarily, I would disagree with, obviously, Kate's law, and I've disagreed with Kate's law in the past for a lot of different reasons. Law enforcement for example has said that it doesn't make cities safer. But I think that it's humbling to be here tonight with Mrs. Wilkerson and I want to express my profound sympathies for what she's been through, and hope that she knows that the vast majority of undocumented people in the United States possess none of the wanton cruelty of her son's murderer, and I hope that there is no punishment to cruel for that man, and I'm just so terribly sorry for your loss, ma'am.

MACCALLUM: What's your reaction to that?

WILKERSON: I mean, thank you for your sympathy, but that's absurd because you don't know who's here. You know, this guy wasn't abnormally a criminal. He was charged with something but not convicted before he murdered my son. So you don't know, you know, which one you're going to get. And are you willing to take that risk with your children.

MANRIQUEZ: Yes, ma'am. I had an undocumented intern last year. Nobody knew she was undocumented and she, you know, just kind of went through her workday like anyone else. And when it was revealed that she was undocumented it had this tint to it. It had this sort of suspicion over it. And it's because of actions by people like Emilio Menendez who make it worse on say suspicious for everyone on the two sides of this.

WILKERSON: It's illegal.

MANRIQUEZ: There's no more relevant perspective in this debate than yours, in my opinion. You've done nothing wrong. Your son was nothing but kind and generous to his attacker, and his attacker should not have been in this country.

MACCALLUM: But Pablo, what do you say -- Laura is saying that, you know, being in the country illegally is breaking the law. It's illegal and that's why it's called illegal immigrants versus legal immigrants. I mean, that's the distinction that on your side of the argument is almost never made. You're talking about someone who is making a contribution and she happens to be here illegally. And I think Laura would say, I don't want to speak for her, she needs to come into the country the proper way.

MANRIQUEZ: The problem with the proper way right now, Martha, is that -- and it's something that we've been through since the Bush administration, also during the Obama administration, and now with the Trump administration, is there's no way for a lot of people to come in, a lot of people from very desperate situations. So in the absence of a line, a line up and they just walk across the border, they overstay their visas, the law needs to change. We've seen nothing but cowardice on Capitol Hill on both sides of the aisle. And then in the broader policy discussion, we really tend to rely too much on talking points rather than listen to the specific details of what happened to Josh, and the great American family that has been affected by this in this terrible way. I don't think it gets mentioned much. But your son, Adam, in the Air Force, your family has done nothing but sacrifice for this country, ma'am. And I think that if -- do have the joy out of this.

MACCALLUM: Laura does not want any other family to have to make the sacrifice that she has made. Laura, thank you. We watched you throughout the week. And we thank you for being here. Pablo, thank you very much.

WILKERSON: Thank you so much.

MACCALLUM: So coming up tonight, the Trump administration's effort to uproot voter fraud is drawing the ire of some state officials, and this is only one of the areas where states are fighting back against the federal government. We're going to explain what's going on, straight ahead. Plus, some controversial comments by Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, the CEO of Facebook, suggesting that people turning away for the church should consider worshiping at the, shall we say, altar of his social media site. We're going to take that story on straight ahead when we back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: Well, the war is on between the states and our federal government, as some state officials are taking on the White House failing to comply on a number of different issues. Trace Gallagher explain what's going on here from across the country in Los Angeles. Hello there, Trace.

TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS: Hey, MacCallum. You know, Hawaii is again pushing back against the president's travel ban saying it bans too many people. When the Supreme Court allowed portions of the travel order to go into effect it exempted those who have a, quote, bona fide relationship with American citizens or entities, meaning, students, workers who's been offered employment, and close family members. But the state department website defines close family members as parents, parent-in-law, spouses, children, including step-kids, as well as siblings including half and step siblings. Fiance has recently been added. But grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, cousins, niece, nephews, and brothers and sisters in law are not considered close relation. So the Hawaiian attorney general wants that definition widen saying, and I'm quoting, in Hawaii, close family includes many of the people that the federal government decided on its own to exclude from that definition. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions referring to the Hawaiian judge who, earlier this year, ruled against the travel ban, said this amounts to nothing more than sour grapes. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: It's just an act of this attorney general. They were slapped down by the Supreme Court. They had an initial victory before a judge in Hawaii that issued an order that bound the whole United States, which is really an overreach in my opinion. This argument will be heard, of course, I don't think it will be sustained either.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GALLAGHER: Meantime, in an effort to prove his widely debunked claims that millions of illegal votes cost him the popular vote in the 2016 election, the Trump administration is requesting voter registration data dating back 10 years from all 50 states including names, addresses, party affiliation, even military status, and felony convictions, and so far, 24 states are refusing to comply. The White House calls the defiance a, quote, political stunt. Martha?

MACCALLUM: Interesting. Trace, thank you. So here now with more, Congressman Sean Duffy if Wisconsin, and Richard Fowler, senior fellow at the New Leaders Council and a Fox News contributor. Good to have both of you with us tonight. Let me start with you, Congressman Duffy. Why are all of these states refusing to turn over that voter role information?

REP. SEAN DUFFY, R-WISCONSIN: Listen, I think this is an activist movement by the left. I mean, you have Democrats who for the last eight months have been fawning over Russia, Russia, Russia, and let's have four federal investigations into what influence Russia had in our election system. So here you have Donald Trump actually say, why don't we actually look and make sure in our election system that we have people who aren't dead and they're not voting. Why do we make sure that felons aren't voting? Let's have a review of our system completely and wholly. I think that makes sense and I'm surprised that Democrats are joining us. I want to make one point, though. I'm concerned about the federal government also garnering all this information. I don't like it, whether it's Barack Obama or Donald Trump. But I think there're ways you can isolate that information, look at it, and then destroy it. But the way we could get around this, Martha, to make sure our elections are protected is have voter I.D. that's a simple solution.

MACCALLUM: That's an interesting point. I mean, you know, it seems to me that every administration at some point wants to reevaluate and take a look at the voter rolls, and whosever not empower gets very panicked at this notion. However, Richard, isn't it a decent point that the congressman has made that given all the concerns about possible infiltration into our voting system by the Russians, and whoever else may be out there trying to do that, that taking stock of all of those tallies and all of those roles would probably be a good idea?

RICHARD FOWLER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Thanks for having me, Martha. First, let me start off by saying Trump sort of allegations of voter fraud have been debunked by anybody who has common sense. But beyond that point to go to the congressman's issue -- and here's the thing, I think Democrats are willing to work with -- work across the aisle to secure our elections. That's why they were Democrats a couple years back that put out the fair voting act. But we couldn't even get Republicans to talk about the voting rights act, right, which is the first step because everyone has the right to vote, and then making sure that everybody's right to vote is protected by making sure people who shouldn't vote don't vote. But we cannot get any Republican support for the voting rights act. And congressman, I mean, are you a cosponsor of the bill?

DUFFY: That's not true, Richard.

(CROSSTALK)

DUFFY: And Congressman Joe Sensenbrenner, a Republican from Wisconsin, is one of the leads on the voter rate act.

(CROSSTALK)

DUFFY: But here's a situation in Virginia, where a young man who was a Democrat was registering 18 dead people to vote in Virginia.

MACCALLUM: That's a problem

DUFFY: This is a real problem. I don't think you can just cast it aside. We have to take a hard look at what's going on in our election system. (INAUDIBLE) But let's look at who's actually voted and are they legally voting in our election?

MACCALLUM: Why wouldn't you want to shed some light into the whole system, Richard? I mean, why wouldn't you want to know? I mean, if there's 18 dead people registered to vote they shouldn't be there. So, I mean, we live in a country where accountability is very important to everyone. So why wouldn't you want to do that?

FOWLER: I believe in accountability. I believe in transparency. Like I said, I think there are Democrats that are willing to work on how we secure our election.

MACCALLUM: So you think we'll figure out a way to kick the dead people off the voter roll?

FOWLER: I'm getting there, right. And I think there's Democrats willing to work with that, if Republicans, like Congressman Duffy, Duffy would get in line and say, hey, listen, for 60 some odd years we have the voting rights act in this country. It has not been renewed in almost eight or nine years. And Republicans, because they have the majority in the house are the problem with getting legislation through. If you want to talk to John Lewis, if you want to talk to Democrats who are working on getting it through on how we increase voter protection, then let's have that conversation, but let's not stand in the way of it.

MACCALLUM: I want to get a quick response from Sean Duffy and I've got to go.

DUFFY: Richard, it's important that you look and say that you have Republicans who wants to join in that effort. But you should also join us and make sure we secure our election not just in Russia, but use voter I.D.'s, and make sure every vote is a lawful vote.

FOWLER: Voter I.D. is a big step...

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: I'm way over. Got to go, guys. Thank you very much. Good to see you both.

FOWLER: Thanks, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So Mark Zuckerberg grabbing some attention after saying that his virtual network may be a replacement, of sorts, for churches. Pastor Rogers Jeffress here with his take on that. And the prior administration sought to strip away the rights of college students who were accused on their campus of serious crimes. Tonight, we are seeing a very important step from President Trump to restore the system on our college campuses and get rid of, quote, campus courts.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: Now, thanks to the Obama administration that their college letter, the incentive is completely slipped where it is hold more students accountable regardless of the evidence. You can't eviscerate due process in the name of politics.


(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Controversies tonight, swirling around with one of the richest and most powerful people in the world, Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, declares a new mission for his creation, suggesting that his virtual social network will seek to take the place of some real-life communities like churches, for example. Dr. Robert Jeffress is a pastor at the First Baptist Church in Dallas, and a Fox News contributor. Pastor, welcome, good to have you here tonight.

ROBERT JEFFRESS, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Thanks, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So he's suggesting that the kind of community that people find in places like Facebook perhaps replaces what they used to find when they went to church.

JEFFRESS: Look, God created the church. Zuckerberg created Facebook. My guess is, God and the church are going to be around a lot longer than Zuckerberg and Facebook are. And look, Martha, I believe that technology can certainly enhance the ministry of the church. In the last 18 months, we had 500,000 people from 192 countries participate in our internet worship services. Technology can enhance the ministry of the church, but it will never replace the church.

MACCALLUM: You visit some cities and you see churches that are now antique stores or churches that are nightclubs.

JEFFRESS: Yes.

MACCALLUM: I always think it's sad when I see that. When you're dinning in a restaurant and, oh, this used to be a church. So that's disturbing when you look at where things are headed. When you look at the fact that 36 percent of millennial say they have no affiliation with any church. Mark Zuckerberg might be onto something here.

JEFFRESS: Well, we all have a need for community. I mean, God created us where we need human touch, we need community, and that's why God designed the family and he designed the church. But that need for human companionship will never be satisfied by curling up with your laptop.

MACCALLUM: So how do you get that message through to millennials who might feel like, you know, they're community is their Facebook, their community is their Instagram? They even transmit spiritual messages through that. And they don't really need -- they feel to actually sit in a church. What would you say to them?

JEFFRESS: Well, we're finding in our church, we're in the middle of downtown Dallas. We have a lot of young couples who lives downtown. And I believe, Martha, more and more they're sensing the emptiness that the world has to offer. And I believe, at least in our church, we're seeing many millennials, many young people, coming to faith in God.

MACCALLUM: Before I let you go, where you going tomorrow night?

JEFFRESS: Tomorrow night a big celebrate freedom rally at the Kennedy Center. We have 400 mass choir and orchestra, a thousand deference, and President Trump is interrupting his vacation to come back and speak tomorrow night at our rally about the importance of our veterans and the importance of religious liberty. It's going to be a great evening.

MACCALLUM: Pastor, thank you for being here. Happy Independence Day to you. Have a great weekend.

JEFFRESS: Thanks, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So the Trump administration seeking to reverse policies that were laid out by President Obama that essentially threatened colleges if they didn't take certain actions against students who were accused of serious crimes. Candice Jackson from the office of civil rights said this this week. She's a new person. Quote, OCR, Office of civil rights has fallen into a pattern of practice of overreaching of setting up to punish and embarrass institutions. The Obama administration approach every complaint as a fishing expedition through which our field investigators have been told to keep searching until you find a violation rather than go where the evidence takes --them. -- is a senior contributor of the Federalist, and journalist for real clear investigation, and she's been working on this topic for a very long time. And we have talked to you about this in the past. So, basically, describe the campus court system in 20 seconds or less, and how it's changing now.

ASHE SCHOW, SENIOR CONTRIBUTOR THE FEDERALIST: Well, currently, because of the Obama administration, schools are basically looking to expel anyone accused. Now some do get through, but most of these students that get accused end up getting expelled no matter what evidence...

MACCALLUM: Mostly sexual assault or harassment cases.

SCHOW: Right, exactly.

MACCALLUM: So the young men, basically, that are not allowed to have any representation, and they're basically judge by professors.

SCHOW: Right, exactly. Or sometimes just a single investigator. It varies from school to school. But the basic -- what goes across all schools is that there're no due process rights. You know, they can't have an attorney. They can't cross-examine their accuser. A lot of times they're not allowed to present evidence in their defense. In some cases, they're not even told the actual allegations against them until they have to show for their hearing, and somehow defend themselves as if they're on an episode of Law and Order. And these are 19, 20-year-old kids, college freshmen, they don't how to do this.

MACCALLUM: And the truth is once they walk in that door and sit down and the process begins, it's highly unlikely, no matter what the circumstances were, that they will walk out of that room ultimately without something permanent on their record.

SCHOW: Absolutely. And you have these kids that, some of them have the means to hire a lawyer, either during the process, and that might get them some leniency or avoid an expulsion, or if they have the means after they are already expelled to file a lawsuit. But there's more than a hundred lawsuits from accused students or expelled or punished students, but that's only the students that can afford it. So there's probably hundreds more that have just had to accept this kind of treatment, false accusations, with this rapist label attached to them with no way to defend themselves.

MACCALLUM: I've got to go. But you think the change is coming?

SCHOW: Well, it sounds like it from Candice Jackson. I definitely hope so.

MACCALLUM: Come back. We'll talk about it some more. Thank you, Ashe Schow. Good to see you tonight. So the quote of the night when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So last night, Bill Bennett commented on the low bar for vulgarity set by presidents, naming Lyndon Johnson and Andrew Jackson as two of the worst, he said. So here's a quote on the subject in a piece that was put together by Rolling Stone Magazine, people said my language was bad, recalled Nixon, but Jesus, you should've heard LBJ. Few, if any president has been quite as coheres as Johnson who famously consulted with cabinet members while he sat on the, Blanker, with the door open. He's language was salted with profanity. He said I do know the difference between chicken blank and chicken salad, he once had. There's a better perspective for you on things this week. Have a great 4th of July with you families, everybody. Great to have you on "The Story" with us, tonight. Tucker Carlson is coming up next.

END

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