Transcript

Trump supporters divided over potential DACA deal

Attorney David Wohl and Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies weigh in on 'The Story'

 

This is a rush transcript from "The Story," September 14, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, "THE STORY" HOST: Breaking news tonight, a U.S. official now confirming to Fox that North Korea did, indeed, launch a missile within the last 60 minutes. South Korea media, reporting that this missile flew higher and a little bit farther than the intermediate-range missile last August. Today's NoKo missile reached a height of 480 miles and flew 2300 miles out. South Korea says they believe it to be a single Intercontinental Ballistic Missile from the capital of Pyongyang. So, right now, details are scarce but we are told that the missile passed once again over Japan where citizens were told that they needed to take cover -- it finally came down in the Pacific Ocean.

Also, important to note that this is the second time in the past month that a North Korean missile has flown over Japan -- an action that the United States would certainly take as an act of war if it were to happen here. So, all of this comes on the same day that a top U.S. general revealed that, indeed, ten days ago, North Korea did, in fact, successfully test a hydrogen bomb. There were some questions about that. So, that would completely change the global landscape. Joining me now by phone: Harry Kazianis, who is the Director of Defense Studies at the Center for the National Interests and is a recognized expert on national security issues involving North Korea. Harry, good to have you back on the program tonight. What are your thoughts on this news?

HARRY KAZIANIS, DIRECTOR OF DEFENSE STUDIES AT THE CENTER FOR THE NATIONAL INTERESTS (via telephone): Well, Martha, regrettably, this was inevitable. I had a feeling the North Koreans were going to test the missile and test it quite soon. Keep in mind that the actions, coming out of the U.N. Security Council just days ago, the North Koreans were going to have to respond. Now, what they're trying to tell us is that their actions are inevitable. Their goal, more than anything else, is to develop highly advanced missiles that cannot only hit South Korea but Japan, our bases in the Pacific and the U.S. homeland. This test is another provocation and only proves to the Trump administration that we have to take the gloves off. That the sanctions that were put in place just a few days ago were not enough. We have to go further, Martha.

MACCALLUM: To what end? I mean, what would stop them at this point?

KAZIANIS: Well, the challenge, Martha, is I don't think there's going to be anything that's a silver bullet that's going to completely stop them, but what we need to do is take away as much of the resources that North Korea is using to build these weapons. One way to do that, we can take $2 billion plus away from them if we go to China and go to Russia and say, look, stop allowing the North Koreans to export what is essentially slave labor. They're sending 100,000-plus people over to different countries and essentially taking their paychecks away from them and giving them back to the regime. If we just stop that practice, that is $2 billion that goes to that regime. And considering their economy is only worth $14 billion, that would have a devastating impact, and that's something we can do.

MACCALLUM: What makes you think China would be willing to do that at this point? I mean, obviously, they know that that's an option that's at their disposal and they haven't done it.

KAZIANIS: Well, that is going to be the trick, but here's what I would do. The United States has tremendous power. We have great representatives. We have people and diplomats that can go to these different countries that are bringing in these different types of labor. You know, a lot of different Middle Eastern countries use this type of labor to build their high-rises, skyscrapers. We can go to these countries and say, look, help the international community, help these poor North Koreans that don't deserve this life, that don't deserve to be treated as slaves, that are essentially helping build nuclear weapons that can kill millions of people. That is a powerful argument and it is something we can do, we can get around the Chinese and the Russians. I think that's smart diplomacy. I think it would really have a big impact.

MACCALLUM: Harry Kazianis, thank you very much. Great to have with us tonight.

KAZIANIS: Thanks for having me.

MACCALLUM: So, we'll watch that story throughout the evening. Also, tonight, we begin at the White House where a dinner that turned into, basically, a game of telephone where the message sort of changed as it was passed down the line. What was said and what was agreed to. Well, it kind of depends on who you ask.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you think you have a deal with Democrats today?

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're working on a deal for DACA, but a lot has to do with the amount of security. We want very heavy security at the border, we want surveillance, we want a lot of things at the border. Ultimately, we don't want them to obstruct the wall.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: DACA now and the wall later?

TRUMP: DACA now, and the wall very soon but the wall will happen.

REP. NANCY PELOSI, D-CALI., HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: We had an agreement to move forward. And our deal was to -- Dream Act as the basis for how we protect the dreamers and for further discussion on what provisions relating to the border.

REP. PAUL RYAN, R-WIS., SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: There is no agreement. The president and the chief of staff called me from Air Force One today to discuss what was discussed, and it was a discussion, not an agreement or negotiation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, also, at the table last night, the Chinese food in the blue room at the White House, where Chief of Staff John Kelly, OMB Director Mick Mulvaney, and Cabinet Members Steven Mnuchin and the Wilbur Ross. The president has gone from the headline of "dream crusher," when he decided to end DACA, to dream actor, you could say -- leaving some supporters cheering and other really pulling their hair out. In moments, we'll talk to two Trump supporters with very different views on this issue. Mark Krikorian, is the Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies, and said this deal with Democrats betrays the president's base; and Trump Supporter, David Wohl, says this is exactly the kindness that President Trump has always promised to the DACA children. But we begin tonight with Chief National Correspondent, Ed Henry, who joins us live from the White House with the back story. Hey, Ed.

ED HENRY, FOX NEWS CHANNEL CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Martha, good to see you. (INAUDIBLE) barely has had been cleared from that Chinese dinner you mentioned -- the blue room at the White House behind me last night before aides to President Trump and the Democratic leaders in Congress were in a mad dash to try and frame this immigration story. White House officials were out of the gate first with a very broad statement at about 9:30 p.m. last night. Probably too broad, because they've said that they had discussed issues like taxes but also DACA and border security -- no mention of the wall. That left the door wide open for Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi to push their narrative 15 minutes later.

A victory lap in the form of a written statement claiming the president agreed to "enshrine the protections of DACA" into law with a "package of border security excluding the wall." The text alerts from the media started flying fast and furious, claiming the president had caved, roiling his political base, as well as GOP Leaders like Speaker Paul Ryan, who you heard there a moment ago saying there's no deal, and Senator Mitch McConnell, who today coldly said he looks forward to seeing the White House's actual proposal before doing anything.

Now, the president, he was up bright and early trying to explain his side, tweeting, 6:11:00 a.m.: "No deal was made last night on DACA. Massive border security would have to be agreed to in exchange for consent. Would be subject to vote." He quickly added, Republicans should be careful about being seen as throwing out dreamers, "they have been in our country for many years through no fault of their own -- brought in by parents at young age. Plus, big border security," again he says. That inflamed Conservatives like Congressman Steve King, a hardliner on illegal immigration. He charged the president's moves, make him feel like Hillary Clinton got elected and is now keeping her campaign promises.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. STEVE KING, R-IOWA: It'll just blow up in his base. I mean, this was a straight up promise all the way through his campaign -- better put it back together or the Republicans will be done in 2018 and 2020.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HENRY: Now, on his way back from Florida today aboard Air Force One, the president's message to reporters was that everyone should calm down. He again noted, Republicans failed him on ObamaCare and warn GOP leaders if they don't pick up the pace, he'll keep cutting deals with Democrats. But he had a warning for Democrats as well, making clear he's not giving up on the wall and if he doesn't get it in this deal, he wants it down the road in another deal with Congress. And he warned Democrats and Republicans, he thinks he is the American people on his side. Martha?

MACCALLUM: Fascinating. Ed, thank you very much. So, here with now with more, Mark Krikorian, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies, and David Wohl, an Attorney and Conservative Commentator, and both, in the past, big Trump supporters. So, Mark, are you still with him?

MARK KRIKORIAN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR FOR THE CENTER OF IMMIGRATION STUDIES: Well, I mean, he hasn't actually done anything for sure yet that he can't get out of. In other words, he hasn't signed a bad bill. What this is suggestions that he is going off the reservations. And the issue here for me, and I think for a lot of people is not whether the DACA people get a proper, lawful amnesty or not -- Obama amnestied them already. This is, basically, upgrading them from amnesty lite to amnesty premium. The question is, what do we get in return? What will damage control measures be in the package? And the president said there's going to be a big border security. That means nothing. I'm sorry, we have a lot of border security. There are other things that we need to limit the fallout from this amnesty. We need e-verify and we need legal immigration reductions to balance off the amnesty. And that's not what we're talking about, that's what we should be talking about, instead.

MACCALLUM: Let's take a look at a tweet from President Trump in 2015. Ann Coulter was among those who were retreating these kinds of tweets from the past. She says, sticks a fork in the president, he's done. You know, and she went a lot further than that, but that's just one example. So, here's President Trump back in 2015, he said: "Marco Rubio would keep Barack Obama's executive order on amnesty intact. Cannot be president." David, why the change in heart?

DAVID WOHL, ATTORNEY AND CONSERVATIVE COMMENTATOR: Well, I don't think it's amnesty. For one thing, I think they may be upgraded to green card status. But look, no one's going to deport 800,000 kids, at least law- abiding kids. He's made it clear, Mr. Trump, that he has had sympathy for these kids who were brought there by no fault of their own, are here, the productive ones, the ones going to school, the hardworking ones, of course, he's going to keep them here. However, the wall will be a huge part of this deal. It may be just a bifurcated deal. We talk about DACA now, and then slightly down the road, we talk about the wall. The wall, look, Martha, one critical issue: two days ago, DHS just waived certain legal restrictions that will accelerate the construction of the wall in critical areas in California -- that wasn't just a coincidence.

MACCALLUM: All right. I want to play this from Chuck Schumer today. Senator Chuck Schumer was on the Senate floor, didn't realize that he was on a hot microphone and here's what he said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, D-NY, SENATE DEMOCRATIC LEADER: Here's what I told him, I said Mr. President, you are much better off if you can sometimes step right and sometimes step left. If you have to step in just one direction, you're boxed. He gets that. We are always going to work it out and it will make us more productive too.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Mark, what do you think about that?

KRIKORIAN: Well, I mean, that's probably a good advice as far as practical issues go. But you know, on this issue that we are talking about, let me make clear, first of all, to correct something, these are not kids. They're all adults. They're in their 20s and 30s, some of them are as old as 36 years old. And the question here is, how is the president going to be working with Chuck Schumer in making a deal? The president is probably very good at making real estate deals, but Chuck Schumer is much more cunning and clever than the mobbed-up labor bosses and crooked building inspectors the president is usually used to working with.

This is a -- he knows immigration, he's been doing it for 30 years, he's been making deals with Republicans and then knifing them in the back once he gets his part of the deal. On immigration, for 30 years, this is something the president doesn't have experience with in dealing with Schumer. And I've got to say, the very fact the president said, well, this isn't amnesty, we're just going to let them stay at green cards, to me suggests he is in over his head in working on this immigration issue.

WOHL: No. You know, Martha --

MACCALLUM: David, what makes you think that he's going to get the other part of the deal? You know, he's obviously putting a carrot out there. What makes you think that they're going to suddenly decide that they're OK with paying for the wall, you know, at least initially up front?

WOHL: Well, funding for the wall is going to be a big issue -- there's no question about that. But again, DHS just did waving legal restrictions that will accelerate the construction of the wall. People know that we need a wall. Look, DACA is going to be limited. There's going to be a point in time, very soon, where anyone coming in past that point won't be subject to the DACA provisions. There's no question about that. So, that-- at that point we know --

MACCALLUM: Do you think Democrats are going to go along with that?

WOHL: I think Democrats are going to have to go along with it, because Mr. Trump is the president, and the reality is he's going over to Schumer and Pelosi. You know, they send a strong message to guys like McConnell and the GOP establishment that he will cross the lines, he will divide the political parties, he will do whatever is necessary to make America great again. And if they don't get that message, they better get it quick.

MACCALLUM: So interesting, all of it. Thank you very much, you guys. Good to see you both tonight.

KRIKORIAN: Thank you.

WOHL: Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So, we're keeping our eyes on the White House, where we are told that the president could have a reaction to the latest North Korean launch in just moments, so we'll take you there live as soon as that happens. Also, tonight, the campus at U.C. Berkeley is bracing for a potentially tough night tonight. Conservative Ben Shapiro is about to speak on campus, and we are watching all of the developments alive.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAN MOGULOF, SPOKESPERSON, U.C. BERKELEY: I don't think there's anybody who, if they had their choice, would want to see what is occurring on this campus today.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: We're going to take you there live next on that. And then, Marc Thiessen and Wendy Osefo, debate. Plus, the Democrats become socialists? That is what one Washington Post columnist is telling the readers. We're going to tell you why, straight ahead. And we'll try to answer this question: are there different rules for different talent at ESPN when it comes to political speech? Straight ahead.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I think that's one of the more outrageous comments that anyone could make, and certainly something that I think is what referable by ESPN.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: Breaking tonight on "The Story." You are looking live at the campus of U.C. Berkeley as they prepare for the possibility of some violent protests there this evening. In just under about three hours, Ben Shapiro will speak at the birthplace of free speech, as that university is known. The school taking drastic measures, putting up concrete barriers around the campus and spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on security so that he can speak. The Los Angeles Times describing it as "unprecedented measures at Berkeley for a conservative writer speech." The school even holding a news conference earlier today. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MOGULOF: Well, the university has obviously gone to extraordinary lengths, in some ways, unprecedented lengths, so that tonight's event can be safe and successful. We regret that the current context we're living in here on this campus and across the country requires these sorts of preparations and measures to be taken.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Fox News' Claudia Cowen, live on the Berkeley campus tonight. Hi, Claudia.

CLAUDIA COWEN, FOX NEWS CHANNEL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Martha. As you said, just about three hours until Ben Shapiro takes the stage, and folks have started here at the main plaza at the U.C. Berkeley campus. Some of these folks are with the leftist group, resist fascism. So far, no problems, just a spirited exchange of ideas and debate, but security, I can tell you, is very, very tight. The streets here are closed, and soon the police will set up a four-block perimeter and only let students with I.D. and tickets through. Officials say, they're thinking outside the box to ensure everyone's safety, but some critics say all of this security sends the wrong message.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SPENCER BROWN, YOUNG AMERICAN FOUNDATION: I think it's sad that it's taken this much security for Berkeley to say that a conservative can speak here. You know, Berkeley should be an environment where anybody is allowed to speak their ideas and their ideology without the concern for safety.

MOGULOF: This place remains a campus that welcomes speakers from across the political spectrum. But it is also a place that has had to adapt to a very different national context and to the fact that there are extreme individuals and organizations that are willing to come here and turn this place into a battleground. We will not tolerate it, and we have the pieces in place to confront it in the days ahead.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COWEN: Well, despite the ramped-up security, some teachers canceled classes and the school is offering to counsel to students and staff who may feel traumatized by the presence of a polarizing figure. Officials say that counseling is available to anyone, liberal or conservative. Police here say they will arrest anyone wearing a mask if they refuse to take it off, and thanks to a change in city policy, they will deploy pepper spray if need be if these crowds get out of control. And one final note, Martha, school officials say they have spent more than $600,000 on security to ensure safety for everyone at tonight's event, showing, once again, that free speech is not always free. Back to you.

MACCALLUM: Even when you're a reporter sometimes. Claudia, thank you very much. So, here now with more tonight: Marc Thiessen, an American Enterprise Institute Scholar and a Fox News Contributor; and Wendy Osefo are a Political Commentator and Professor at John Hopkins University. Welcome to both of you. I mean, it's astonishing, Wendy, why would you need $600,000 worth of security when Ben Shapiro is going to come speak there? He was, I want to point out, the number one most have been targeted Jewish journalist in 2016. He's hardly a fascist or a neo-Nazi. So, what is going on here tonight?

WENDY OSEFO, POLITICAL COMMENTATOR AND PROFESSOR AT JOHN HOPKINS UNIVERSITY: I agree with that. And I think that Ben Shapiro has every right to speak. However, what we're witnessing are these right-wing provocateurs who are descending upon U.C. Berkeley. And we have to ask ourselves, earlier this year, we saw one of those provocateurs come on campus, caused chaos and cost over $100,000 of damages. U.C. Berkeley, since 1964 has been coined the birthplace of free speech --

MACCALLUM: Right. So, why are they not for free speech? I mean, why would groups in Berkeley and professors, they are saying, students and professors, said, we understand if you need to stay home. They're canceling classes for free speech week at Berkeley. I mean, if you can't go there for an education to hear people of all different viewpoints, I'm not sure why you go there at all. Marc?

MARC THIESSEN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR AND SCHOLAR OF THE AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE: Absolutely, you're 100 percent right. What we are seeing here is the rise of a domestic terrorist organization called Antifa, which called themselves anti-Fascist but, in fact, they adapt the fascist tactics of the Black-shirted, that show up with hundreds of people bearing sticks and clubs and actually shields that say "no hate" as they beat peaceful protesters. And I don't know if there's going to be violence tonight, I hope there's no violence tonight. But even if there isn't, the existence of this violence in Berkeley and other places has already put a chill on free speech.

Because as he pointed out, $600,000 for security for Ben Shapiro, OK? The student group that invited him is being charged $15,000 as a security fee. That's the tuition for a single year in Berkeley. So, thank goodness, they've got groups like the Young Americans Foundation that are willing to pay for that for them. But campus -- one, most students can't afford that kind of thing. So, college campuses around the country, and students are going to be of inviting fewer conservative speakers because they can't afford $15,000 for security when Antifa shows up with their clubs and their sticks to beat people that they disagree with.

MACCALLUM: Wendy, should the university be saying, you know, if you break a window, if you cause any violence tonight, we don't care which side you're on, you will be arrested, you will be suspended from school. We are sticking up for free speech in every way shape and form, and we want to make sure that this man can speak.

OSEFO: Absolutely. But as a professor, I must say that the university has the number one goal to protect the students. So, it's not saying that Ben Shapiro was going to cause any harm, it's to say if there are any agitators that we are prepared for that. And I wanted to say something about the intent here. As U.C. Berkeley is the place of free speech, the intent by right-wing provocateurs has been to disrupt the status quo, and that intent is both --

MACCALLUM: But Wendy, I have to jump in. Because when you look at the violence that happened when Milo Yiannopoulos was there, the breaking of windows was coming from the other side. When you look at Patriots' prayer, and you look at the man who was, you know, bashed, he was being beaten with a stick. You've got people holding signs that say "no hate," and knocking them over people's heads. So, you have to recognize that the violence is definitely coming from both sides here, no?

OSEFO: Yes, the violence is coming from both sides. But again, there are many universities across our beautiful nation, and the fact that everyone is descending on U.C. Berkeley is, again, that narrative to disrupt and we cannot negate that. Even though both sides are causing violence, that intent has to be looked at very closely and questioned.

MACCALLUM: Marc?

THIESSEN: It's not the fault of a conservative speaker who comes on campus if Black-shirted thugs show up and start breaking windows and trying to hurt people with shields that say "no hate." That is domestic terrorism. Also, by the way, it is bigotry. They claim to be what anti-White Supremacist. Bigotry is, by definition, trying to impose the hegemony of your beliefs, and that's what these people are doing. They are trying to prevent people with different opinions from coming onto campuses -- they're not preventing fascists, they're preventing conservatives, from coming to campus and presenting an alternate view that doesn't fit with the orthodoxy on that campus. So, they are using terrorist violence to shut down free speech, and everybody, left, right, and center, should condemn that.

MACCALLUM: Thank you, guys. Good to see you both. We're going to be watching all of this live as it unfolds tonight. And as Marc says, and I'm sure Wendy agrees, we hope that there's no violence there tonight but we're going to be keeping on close-eyes on the activity in Berkeley. So, just into Fox News in the last minute, Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders has confirmed that President Trump has been briefed on North Korea's new missile launch by Chief of Staff John Kelly. We'll be keeping our eyes on 1600 in case we get a statement from the president on this tonight. Also, coming up, is Bernie Sanders turning some key Democratic leaders into socialist?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, I-VERMONT: I have no doubt, none whatsoever, that this nation, sooner than people believe, will, in fact, pass a Medicare for all single-payer system.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, that statement and that group of powerful Democrats. The party hitched its future to an idea that both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama issued, prompting the Washington Post to declare that the Democrats have officially become socialists. That's from Dana Milbank at the Washington Post. So, as Joe Biden was saying, not too many words, that's a big deal, folks. Jabari Brisport and Robert Zimmerman, take it on after this. Plus, it's James Comey versus the world, firing a new warning to the embattled former FBI director who has found himself in hot water yet again.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-SOUTH CAROLINA: This got him one way or the other if I have anything to do about it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANDERS: I have no doubt, none whatsoever, that this nation, sooner than people believe, will, in fact, pass a Medicare for all single-payer system and finally, finally, health care will be a right for all in the United States of America. Thank you all very much.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Applause and the signs go up. The once- loner Vermont socialist, Bernie Sanders, now has the backing of some of the most prominent Democrats on the hill. He was flanked yesterday by Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, all considered to be leaders in the race for 2020, for the Democratic ticket. They cheered him on as he called for the final frontier of ObamaCare single-pair government-run health care, leading Dana Milbank at the Washington Post to declare the Democrats have become socialists. So what is this about? I'm joined by Jabari Brisport, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America Party, which, of course, endorsed Sanders in 2016, so he's all for this, and Robert Zimmerman, Democratic strategist and member of the Democratic National Committee. Robert, let me start with you. Is this your party?

ROBERT ZIMMERMAN, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Proudly so. This is a party that's not socialist at all. We're proud capitalists. But you saw this proposal of universal health care, which Donald Trump actually endorsed in 2015. This concept -- this proposal speaks for a majority of Americans, 53 percent in the most recent Kaiser Health Tracking Poll. But, Martha, the issue is not about Democrats, the issues is about Republicans, because, right now, the right hand of the Republican Party -- let me finish my point. The right hand of the Republican Party doesn't know what the alt- right hand is doing.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: I want to talk about the Democrats, because I think it's quite striking when the Washington Post editorial writer, Dana Milbank, says that he believes that Democrats are now a socialist party, essentially.

ZIMMERMAN: Was Medicare in the 60's when Lyndon Johnson introduced it socialism? You know, that was the push back then, it proved to be false.

MACCALLUM: You're on board. You're glad. You want Bernie to lead the party.

ZIMMERMAN: I didn't say that. I want the party to step up for single payer, for Medicare for all. It's a time that's come.

MACCALLUM: Why would Barack Obama against it, and Hillary Clinton against it?

ZIMMERMAN: They worked so hard to even get the Affordable Care Act through. There was a different time and they've made great strides. But the point is, health care is not a privilege, it's a right. And the Democrats and the majority of Americans agree with that. It's the Republican Party that is so caught up.

MACCALLUM: Here's the problem -- but you've just said it, 53 percent say they want single-payer.

ZIMMERMAN: That's right.

MACCALLUM: Here's the problem with that poll. When asked, do you want to pay extra taxes for it, 60-something percent say, oh, no, I actually really don't. And let me tell you the numbers, each family, each household, an additional $24,000 to cover the cost of single-payer. Are you OK with that, Jabari?

JABARI BRISPORT, DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST: $24,000?

MACCALLUM: $24,000.

(CROSSTALK)

BRISPORT: Or 4 percent income tax, so it's not $24,000. I don't know where those numbers came from.

ZIMMERMAN: And Martha, the premiums.

MACCALLUM: $3.2 trillion a year, $24,000 per household. Now let me tell you something else, here's Bernie Sanders in 1987. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANDERS: For example, if we expanded Medicaid for everybody. Give everybody a Medicaid card. We would be spending such an astronomical sum of money that, you know, we would bankrupt the nation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ZIMMERMAN: But that was 1987. Let's remember, you're ignoring the fact that premiums would come down dramatically for families in America. Health care costs will come down dramatically. And so, that's the other side of the story.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: So we're checking the box. You are in favor of this program?

BRISPORT: You're also ignoring the fact that we already spend more than $3 trillion a year on health care cost. And the fact that it's expected to expand even greater for year. So this is actually a savings. Something is done to 3.2 trillion a year is actually less.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Here's what I'm hearing. What I'm hearing is that you guys are both on this -- on board with single-payer health care. I don't know where that leaves, you know, Joe Biden, or maybe Governor Cuomo, if they decide they want to run. Are they going to be in a different party than you guys are in now?

ZIMMERMAN: First of all, that's one issue in our very broad party.

MACCALLUM: It's a pretty big one.

ZIMMERMAN: It is, indeed. And we'll see how they address it. But the bigger point here is you've got a Republican Party that is so extreme, they don't recognize climate change is real, they think Medicare, of course, they argue it was socialism in the 60's. They said that when we demanded accountability in the banks after the crash of '07 and '08, that was going to lead to the collapse of capitalism. Capitalism is doing just fine.

(CROSSTALK)

BRISPORT: Yeah, capitalism is in crisis. No, we have an extreme gulf between the wealthy and the poor right now. And I do wish, actually, the Democrats would push more to socialism.

MACCALLUM: I think it's interesting, though, because we had seen the party, definitely, moving further left and more progressive, which I'm sure you're happy about, Robert, and is also in that category, apparently.

ZIMMERMAN: I don't accept your premise that we're moving left. I think we're in climate change, LGBT rights, standing up for raising the minimum wage where now red states are adopting, that's the mainstream of America, so is universal health care.

MACCALLUM: I think that's fascinating, because I think what you're finding is that there is a drift toward the middle. And I'm looking at Nancy Pelosi, and President Trump and Chuck Schumer, you know, sort of heading towards the moderate version of a political party, and I think you guys are going to be on one side, and maybe Mark Meadows is going to be on the other side, and there's something happening in the middle.

ZIMMERMAN: Every time Donald Trump listens and follows Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi's lead, it's a good day for America.

(LAUGHTER)

MACCALLUM: We'll see. Thanks you guys. I've got to leave it there, thank you very much. So coming up tonight, ESPN is under fire over claims that it's OK that some of their anchors speak up politically, but not other people. And it depends on what you're saying, apparently. Plus, James Comey against the world, the former FBI director feeling the heat from all sides, Mo Elleithee and former congressman Jason Chaffetz, here with their take, coming up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So it kind of looks like James Comey pretty much against the rest of the world these days with the White House -- excuse me, laying out their case against him. And Democrats and Republicans lining up to do the same. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Leaking FBI memo's on a sensitive case regardless of classification violates federal law, including the privacy act, standard FBI employment agreement, and nondisclosure agreement all personnel must sign, I think that's pretty clean and clear that that would be a violation.

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: The role that he played historically was determinative.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: He's come in more way the other, if I have anything to do with it.

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: I ask you, yes or no, if he won't come would you subpoena him?

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: I would, yes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Let's bring in former house oversight committee chairman, Jason Chaffetz, and Mo Elleithee, founding and executive director of the Georgetown Institute of politics and public service, both are Fox News contributor. Gentlemen, welcome. Good to see both of you tonight. Jason, let me start with you, what does everybody wants him to explain?

JASON CHAFFETZ, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Explain the truth because he came and testified before both the house and the senate, and said that he made the decision after interviewing Secretary Clinton. Well, that interview happened on July 2nd. Guess what? We had a national holiday on July 4th. And on July 5th, he went ahead and said that, you know, we're not going to prosecute her. It's totally inexcusable. And when you have Senator Graham, Senator Grassley, and now Trey Gowdy, saying they've seen documentation that he actually made the decision, far in advance, of the interview of the last 16, 17 witnesses, you hardly have a legitimate investigation.

MACCALLUM: And it's so interesting to me because I remember him talking about being disturbed that Loretta Lynch wanted him to call it, you know, a matter. And he said, absolutely not, it's an investigation. He said the FBI does investigations, right? So if it's true that he made his decision before the investigation was over, that's problematic. Let's play this sound bite with James Comey on the hill from 2016.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Did you make the decision not to recommend criminal charges relating to classified information before or after Hillary Clinton was interviewed by the FBI on July the 2nd?

JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: After. I know in our political life sometimes people casually accuse each other of being dishonest, but if colleagues of ours believe I am lying about when I made this decision, please urge them to contact me privately so we can have a conversation about this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Mo Elleithee, your thoughts?

MO ELLEITHEE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Look, James Comey is going to go down in history as one of the most confusing public servants, I think. You have both sides who are frustrated with him. You know, I talked to people who worked in the department of justice, and they'll say, look, if the evidence was heading in this direction, that there was no criminal case to be charged, it's not uncommon for him to start putting that together on the assumption that the final interview with Hillary Clinton isn't going to turn anything, isn't going to change that, and if it does, then you write a new memo. So you hear that on one hand.

On the other hand, you hear James Comey say that, you know, he had to go out there and give that press conference in July, in which he had said some very tough things about Secretary Clinton because of the Loretta Lynch-Bill Clinton meeting. And this makes you kind of think, well, maybe that's not exactly why he did it. And he, kind of, was already going to go down this path a little bit sooner. I do think there're some people out there right now trying to make the case that this showed he was in the tank for Hillary Clinton very early on. And I would say, I think that's fairly laughable, if you look at that July press conference and the letter he put out there towards the end of the election. I don't think anyone can say with a straight face that he was trying to help her.

MACCALLUM: I hear you. But it may be that he was conflicted and that there was pressure on him, and that he did some of these, perhaps, to demonstrate that he was sort of trying to do the right thing, going through the process. Jason, what do you think?

CHAFFETZ: Well, the fact is he missed the boat on 16 or 17 of the witnesses. Remember, also in the room with Hillary Clinton was her former chief of staff, who was a fact witness, who's a target of the investigation, who was involved on the investigation, had been given immunity, had been interviewed herself, and she got to sit in a room with Hillary Clinton as her attorney? And James Comey said himself, he has never, ever, ever in his history of his career ever seen that. Well, congress has the right to look at that. That's why they've got to yank him up there, put his right hand up in the air again, and confront him with these documents.

MACCALLUM: All right. I've got to leave it there. Thank you very much, guys, Mo Elleithee in Washington, and Jason Chaffetz here. Thank you, guys.

CHAFFETZ: Thanks.

MACCALLUM: So worldwide leader in sports finding itself in some pretty hot water after one of its hosts attacked President Trump. Up next, ESPN reaction, and if the company has a double standard in its handling of liberal and conservative staffers. Howard Kurtz weighs in on that next on "The Story."

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: A bit of a media firestorm tonight after ESPN gives anchor, Jemele Hill, little more than a slap on the wrist for accusing President Trump of being unfit for office, a bigot, and a white supremacist and more. The sport networks reaction to Ms. Hill is very different from how they've treated others who are on-air talent with different views. Trace Gallagher joins us in our west coast newsroom tonight with the back story here. Hi, trace.

TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS: Hi, Martha. You know we found at least a dozen examples of what critics call ESPN's liberal bias, but for this story, we'll stick to the apples to apples argument of how ESPN treats its employees following controversial comments, like conservative baseball announcement, Curt Schilling, who spoke out against Muslim extremists, Hillary Clinton, and transgender bathrooms, and was summarily fired. Though, in fairness, Schilling had been warned. But when sports center host Linda Collins said during a radio show that her network had become too political, ESPN president, John Skipper, personally told her not to show up for work that day.

Then this week, sports center host Jemele Hill posted this, quote, Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself with other white supremacists. And Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy, period. ESPN responded, quoting, the comments on twitter from Jemele Hill regarding a president do not represent the position of ESPN. We have addressed this with Jemele, and she recognizes her actions were inappropriate. The White House took that as an under reaction. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANDERS: I'm not sure if he's aware, but I think that's one of the more outrageous comments that anyone could make, and certainly something that I think is a fireable offense by ESPN.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GALLAGHER: Interesting that in 2016, Jemele Hill also weigh-in on the Curt Schilling firing, saying, quote, ESPN is an uncomfortable -- in uncomfortable position. They don't want to suppress anyone's belief, but some would say, you could say that, but Curt Schilling got fired. But the values Curt Schilling was trying to promote didn't line up with what ESPN wants to be as a company. Critics say it's now very clear what ESPN wants to be as a company. We should note, ESPN reportedly trying to stop Hill from appearing on her show, Wednesday, but her cohost and fill-in host would not appear without her. ESPN denies that story. Martha?

MACCALLUM: Thank you, Trace. So joining us now "MediaBuzz" host, Howard Kurtz. Howie, good evening, good to have you here.

HOWARD KURTZ, "MEDIABUZZ" HOST: Hi, Martha.

MACCALLUM: What's your take on this?

KURTZ: Well, ESPN has become a liberal network that happens to cover sports. I mean, Curt Schilling says a couple controversial things, one strike and he's out. Jemele Hill mounts a racially inflammatory diatribe against Donald Trump, and that's just inappropriate. I'm sorry. Inappropriate is when you use the wrong salad fork. This is off the charts outrageous. And it seems to me that ESPN, the bigger outrageous, is that ESPN, no disciplinary action, no apology from her or the network, wasn't even a slap on the wrist, even though Jemele Hill probably alienated potentially half of the audience that doesn't despise Donald Trump.

MACCALLUM: So do you think she should be fired for this?

KURTZ: I don't want to come out and say that, but I do think that ESPN, this is a huge fumble not to do something. At least, you know, insist on an apology. That was a really -- statement. And there's a long history here, including the network, during the campaign, moving a celebrity golf tournament from Donald Trump's California golf course and -- by the way, Martha, most of the mainstream media basically ignored the story until Sarah Sanders at the White House podium said it was a firing offense.

MACCALLUM: No doubt there's a lot of ESPN viewers who are Trump supporters. I mean, you know, you would think that that would hit home with the folks in the high office at ESPN.

KURTZ: Or who just want sports from a sport network and not political diatribes.

MACCALLUM: Yeah. I want to show you something from The View here, because there's also a double standard that appears to exist with their evaluation of presidential marriages. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: Many Republicans have been very critical of your staying in your marriage. What is your response? Why did you stay in your marriage?

HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: People say, oh, they have an arrangement. Yeah, it's called a marriage.

(LAUGHTER)

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: I've got one of those.

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: Me too.

CLINTON: I think it's time that we really tried to support people in their decisions and give them more understanding and compassion.

(CROSSTALK)

CLINTON: And to mind their own business.

(APPLAUSE)

UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: What's the relationship like? She's suffering from Stockholm syndrome. Like a hostage up in this Trump Tower. She's like Rapunzel. Let down your hair, Melania.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Boy, that's pretty rough stuff, Howie. As Hillary Clinton says, you know, don't you think it's a nice idea to have respect for people's relationships and understand that there's a privacy and respect for a marriage.

KURTZ: Look, everyone knows The View only has one token conservative, but this reeks of a double standard. You know, Republicans are criticizing Hillary Clinton's marriage, in which she wrote about it in her book, obviously. And that's terrible. And then to take those kind of pot shots at Melania Trump and the Trump marriage, you know, there's not even sort of effort at any kind of balance. And if you're going to take the position that it's none of our business and that it's their private lives, and how about equally applying it to the current president of the United States.

MACCALLUM: Yeah. I, for one, was sort of hoping that Melania Trump would get off the plane today with big high heels just to throw it back in that, but she looked great and she always does. She had her sneakers on today. That was just a stupid story. Howie, thank you very much.

KURTZ: Great to see you.

MACCALLUM: We're going to take a quick break and will be right back with much more of The Story. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: What's the hardest part?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: We have an update for you on our Houston firefighter that we introduced you to last week who lost everything in Hurricane Harvey. We rode along with him, Scott Biehl, as he returned to his West Houston home last Wednesday, 12 days after the storm hit. It was under several feet of water. Look at that. His spirit though was not dampened. He spent a lot of time helping his neighbors throughout that course of that. And, of course, his own tragic outcome with his house as well. So today, he sent us this picture of his home and this message. It's our quote of the night. Wow, you should have been in the house today, truly amazing to see the outpouring of firefighter support both local and from around the U.S. We gutted and clean the entire house in four to five hours. This process usually takes several days. The house for the most part is gutted. However, there's still stuff to do. I plan to set up more work with the fireman the rest of the week. Good news. Good to see that community pulling together in the time of need for so many there and in Florida. We will see you back here with more of "The Story" tomorrow night at 7:00. For now, Tucker Carlson is up next. Have a good night.

END

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