This is a rush transcript from "Fox News Sunday," January 26, 2020. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
CHRIS WALLACE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: I'm Chris Wallace. We're live in Des Moines ahead of the Iowa caucuses where the shadow of impeachment reaches all the way from Capitol Hill.
REP. JERRY NADLER (D-NY): They complain about process, but they do not seriously contest any of the allegations against the president.
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): The McConnell rules seem to be designed by President Trump, for President Trump.
WALLACE: Democrats wrap up their opening arguments and President Trump's lawyers finally get their turn.
PAT CIPOLLONE, WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: We will show you a lot of evidence that they should have showed you.
WALLACE: We'll discuss the battle over calling witnesses with Alan Dershowitz, a member of the president's defense team. It's a "FOX News Sunday" exclusive.
And we'll ask our Sunday group back in Washington to break down new FOX polls on whether the president should be removed from office.
ANDREW YANG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I feel bad for my competitors that have to head to D.C. for this impeachment trial.
WALLACE: Presidential candidate Andrew Yang joins us here in Iowa to talk about staying alive in the Democratic race.
Plus, who will win in just eight days? We'll ask a special Iowa political panel.
And our Power Player of the Week, turning his on-screen roles into off- screen causes.
All, right now, on "FOX News Sunday".
WALLACE: You are looking live at the River Center in downtown Des Moines, the site of our town hall tonight on FOX News Channel with Mayor Pete Buttigieg.
And hello again today from Iowa, just eight days before the caucuses, where Americans will decide the first contest in the race for the 2020 Democratic nomination.
The impeachment of President Trump is throwing some candidates a curve ball, forcing the four senators in the race to stay in Washington for the Senate trial.
Today, we have new Fox polls on impeachment and Democrats' push for witnesses. Forty-eight percent of voters in our new nationwide survey say Senate already has enough information, while 44 percent say more witness testimony is needed.
In a moment, we'll speak with Alan Dershowitz, a member of the president's defense team.
But, first, let's bring in Kevin Corke with the latest from the White House -- Kevin.
KEVIN CORKE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Chris, in a vigorous defense of the president, his legal team this week warned senators against removing him from office, less than ten months before Americans vote on whether or not to give him a second term.
CIPOLLONE: For all their talk about election interference, that they're here to perpetrate the most massive interference in an election in American history.
CORKE: White House counsel Pat Cipollone, the head of the president's defense team, said Saturday that Democrats' efforts to remove the president from office would set a very, very dangerous precedent in an election year.
CIPOLLONE: Let the people decide for themselves. That's what the Founders wanted, that's what we should all want.
CORKE: But Democrats in only the third presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history argued that the president should be removed, for encouraging Ukraine to interfere in the upcoming election by allegedly pressuring its leader to dig up dirt on leading Democratic contender, former Vice President Joe Biden.
REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): They don't contest the basic architecture of the scheme. They do not contest that the president solicited a foreign nation to interfere in our election to help him cheat.
CORKE: Schiff's assertion comes as a newly revealed 2018 video appears to show the president at a donor event with two men at the center of the impeachment inquiry, talking about removing the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. This as a majority of those in the latest FOX News survey say they believe the president should be removed from office, 50-44.
CORKE: That survey, 48 Democrats, 42 Republicans -- by the way, sources tell FOX News it is highly unlikely the president's legal team will take as much time as the House did in mounting its defense. That means, Chris, we could see a vote on possible witnesses and perhaps even the articles themselves sometime late this week -- Chris.
WALLACE: Kevin Corke, reporting from the White House -- Kevin, thank you.
Joining us now, a member of the president's defense team, Alan Dershowitz, professor emeritus at Harvard Law School and author of the new book "Guilt by Accusation."
Professor, the Democratic House floor managers used their entire 24 hours to make their case against President Trump. How do you think they did?
ALAN DERSHOWITZ, IMPEACHMENT DEFENSE TEAM MEMBER: I think they presented the strongest case they could present on their facts, but they didn't come close to alleging impeachable offenses.
Remember the Constitution requires treason -- there's no treason. Bribery, there's no allegation of bribery. Other high crimes and misdemeanors, which means other high crimes and misdemeanors that are akin to treason and bribery. They completely failed to meet that high constitutional standard, and therefore it would be unconstitutional to remove a president based on the allegations that were made against him in the articles of impeachment.
WALLACE: So, let's assume, for the sake of this discussion, that everything that the floor managers argued is true, that President Trump used the power of his office, the military aide, a meeting with Ukraine's president to pressure Ukraine to get -- to investigate, to get oppo research on his -- one of his main rivals for 2020, Joe Biden. Assuming, just for this argument, that all of that is true, you're saying it's still not an impeachable offense?
DERSHOWITZ: Well, the defense team tomorrow will show that it's not true, that many of the issues that were presented are -- were presented incompletely. Remember, there are three things that the Senate has to decide. One, is there sufficient evidence of what they claim? Two, does it constitute a high -- does it constitute, first of all, an abuse of power? And third, does abuse of power constitute impeachable offenses?
But the legal argument is that since they didn't allege any impeachable offenses, since they only alleged abuse of power and obstruction of Congress -- and those are vague, open-ended criteria of exactly the sort the Framers had rejected back in the Constitutional Convention -- that yes, even if the factual allegations are true, which are highly disputed in which the defense team will show contrary evidence, but even if true, they did not allege impeachable offenses. So, there can't be a constitutionally authorized impeachment. That's the legal constitutional argument.
Now, obviously, lawyers always --
WALLACE: Let me -- let me interrupt if I can, sir --
WALLACE: -- because I want to press on the question --
DERSHOWITZ: Sure, please?
WALLACE: -- of the constitutional argument.
You base that argument in large part, in prior interviews, on the case made by former Supreme Court Justice Benjamin Curtis in the impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson back in 1868.
Briefly, what do you think is the argument that Justice Curtis made that's so important here?
DERSHOWITZ: What he argued is that when you look at all the provisions in the Constitution regarding impeachment that, clearly, the Framers intended that the criteria be, high crimes and misdemeanors, that is existing criminal statutes.
Now, I don't think he meant that, for example, if a president bribes somebody but the bribery occurred outside of the statute of limitations, or outside of the United States, so that he couldn't technically be prosecuted, that that would necessarily mean he couldn't be impeached. But the conduct has to be criminal in nature. It can't be abuse of power. It can't be obstruction of Congress.
Those are precisely the arguments that the Framers rejected. Remember, one of the Framers introduced an argument saying that maladministration -- which was a common law in England -- a ground for impeachment, should be included in the Constitution, and Madison said, if you do that, you're going to turn the United States republic into a parliamentary-style democracy like in Britain, where the president serves at the pleasure of the legislature. And they didn't want that.
WALLACE: But --
DERSHOWITZ: They rejected that. They instead imposed very stringent criteria for impeachment that haven't been met in this case.
WALLACE: I want to argue this with you a little bit because --
DERSHOWITZ: Sure, please --
WALLACE: -- it seems to be are two -- excuse me, two problems with your argument about the Johnson impeachment trial. First of all, Johnson had clearly broken the law, the Tenure of Office Act when he fired his own secretary of war.
And secondly, I look back at all of the arguments made by the senators who decided to vote to save -- because he was only saved by one vote by the Republican refusance (ph). They didn't talk about that at all. That wasn't the argument that was key to them, whether or not the impeachable offense was a crime. What some of them argued that the law that he had broken was unconstitutional. Some argued who would replace him.
But the specific argument by Justice Curtis that you keep citing was not a factor.
DERSHOWITZ: Well, Professor Bowie (ph) at Harvard Law School who wrote a piece about this in the Harvard Law Review Forum takes exactly the opposite position. He's a historian.
And he looked at the debates and he says that among the seven senators who dissented, Republicans who hated Johnson, but decided that if you allowed these grounds for impeachment to go forward, it would undercut the Constitution. He said several of them did cite and refer to the argument.
And one of them said, if you allow crime to be defined in the bosom of every senator, as distinguished from in the law books, you would be inviting, allowing impeachment to become regularized as a political tool.
WALLACE: Let's --
DERSHOWITZ: So, respectfully, Chris, I disagree. Those Republicans did look at Curtis and one of them said, quote, Curtis gave us the law and we followed it.
WALLACE: Well --
DERSHOWITZ: So I do think Curtis' arguments are substantial. But even if you reject Curtis' arguments, you then have to come and say that abuse of power, which virtually every presidents since Washington has been accused of --
WALLACE: Let me --
DERSHOWITZ: -- by political enemies, would be criteria, and it's not. Go ahead.
WALLACE: I don't mean to interrupt you but we have limited time and I want to talk to about the Framers, because you keep bringing them up.
DERSHOWITZ: Right, I do.
WALLACE: In Federalist 65 --
WALLACE: -- Alexander Hamilton, certainly one of the Framers, argues that a criminal offense is not essential to impeachment.
Let me put up what he says.
WALLACE: The subjects of its jurisdiction are those offenses which proceed from the misconduct, misconduct of public men, or in other words, from the abuse or violation of some public trust.
WALLACE: Another Founder, George Mason, brought up the case of a former British official in India who had been accused of mismanagement.
Again, in either of these cases is there any mention of breaking a specific criminal statute.
DERSHOWITZ: Well, let's start with mismanagement. Yes, that was a criteria in England and that was rejected by the United States. That was one of the elements that was introduced by the Framers and it was rejected by votes like nine to two --
WALLACE: But that's not true. George Mason is one of the people who came up with high crimes and misdemeanors --
DERSHOWITZ: I understand but he rejected --
WALLACE: -- to include -- to include things like misconduct and abuse of power.
DERSHOWITZ: No -- absolutely --
WALLACE: And then you have Alexander Hamilton --
DERSHOWITZ: Absolutely not.
WALLACE: -- who talked specifically about misconduct and abuse.
DERSHOWITZ: I will -- I will spend some time on the Hamilton matter in my talk.
When Clinton was being impeached, people who opposed Clinton's impeachment cited the same quote as saying, no, no, no, that shows you have to narrow it, not broaden it. What he was saying is the subjects of the jurisdiction, namely high crimes and misdemeanors, treason, bribery, those are crimes that involve public people, they are political in nature, they are abuse of power.
Hamilton wasn't trying to expand the criteria from the constitutional criteria. He was actually trying to contract it, arguing that, in fact, in addition to having crimes like treason and bribery, you have to show that it involves a breach of public trust. I will lay this all out tomorrow very carefully in a very scholarly way.
WALLACE: I look forward to that, but I -- but I do want to point out that we want to listen to a couple of the people who in -- you bring up the Clinton impeachment trial who argued exactly the opposite of what you're arguing today.
Let's listen to them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): It doesn't even have to be crime. It's just when you start using your office and you're acting in a way that hurts people, you've committed a high crime.
DERSHOWITZ: It certainly doesn't have to be a crime. If you have somebody who completely corrupts the office of president and who abuses trust and who poses great danger to our liberty, you don't need technical crime.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DERSHOWITZ: Well, you don't need a technical crime. You don't need a technical crime.
WALLACE: Professor Dershowitz, let me -- let me ask about this --
WALLACE: -- because when you argue that case, that what didn't have to be a crime in the Clinton impeachment, I find it very hard to believe that you had not studied the only other presidential impeachment in history, which was the Johnson impeachment.
So, suddenly discovering that the key issue is what Justice Curtis argued in 1860, you're too good a lawyer not to have studied that back in 1998.
DERSHOWITZ: Well, remember in 1998, the issue was not whether you need a crime because President Clinton was charged with a crime. He was charged with perjury --
WALLACE: But you just said -- we just put the sound bite up where you said it doesn't have to be a crime.
DERSHOWITZ: Well, I did say that then and I've done all the extensive research. I've been immersing myself in dusty old books and I've concluded that, no, it has to be a crime, it doesn't have to be a technical crime.
Now, remember that Congressman Nadler changed his view, Congressman -- then-Senator Schumer changed his view.
Larry Tribe back in 1998 said a sitting president couldn't be prosecuted, now once Trump got elected, he said a sitting president can be prosecuted.
That's what scholars do, that's what academics do. We do more research, we need to find --
WALLACE: You talked (ph) about what lawyers do, which is depending on the fact -- facts of the case and the side they're arguing, they find an argument to make.
DERSHOWITZ: Well, I've made this argument way, way, way before I was put on the -- given the role to argue the constitutional case. I made that argument in the article of "The Wall Street Journal", I made that argument --
WALLACE: Professor, I want to ask you one last question --
WALLACE: -- because we are running out of time.
A tape has just been discovered which appears to show a Giuliani associate Lev Parnas having a conversation with President Trump back in 2018 about then-U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch. Let's listen to this exchange.
DERSHOWITZ: Uh-huh, great.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
LEV PARNAS, GIULIANI ASSOCIATE: She's basically walking around telling everybody, wait, he's going to get impeached, just wait. It's incredible.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Get rid of her. Get her out tomorrow. I don't care. Get her out tomorrow. Take her out. OK? Do it.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
DERSHOWITZ: Perfect example of what is not impeachable conduct. The president has full authority to fire an ambassador for any reason he chooses to.
WALLACE: Let me just ask you -- this works better if I ask the question and then you answer it, Professor --
WALLACE: -- which is given the fact that President Trump says he doesn't know Parnas, and you can see what appears to be a discussion back and forth, and the fact that they're specifically discussing getting rid of Yovanovitch, the ambassador who was really holding up the effort to try to get Ukraine to investigate Biden and the Democrats, I'm not asking if it's an impeachable offense. Clearly, that conversation isn't.
How damaging do you think that tape is?
DERSHOWITZ: Well, I only want to speak to what's an impeachable offense. I think we're not talking here about political damage. That's exactly what voters ought to be deciding on. That's why the election ought to go forward, voters would have taken into account that tape, hear both sides of it, decide how to vote.
You acknowledge that's not an impeachable offense and I would say that much of what was presented by the Democrats were not impeachable offenses. They were campaign ads designed to try to show that you should vote for a different candidate.
That's fine. Let's put it up to the voters, let's not destroy our heritage of our Constitution by expanding the criteria for impeachment beyond that which the Framers accepted.
WALLACE: Professor Dershowitz, thank you, thank you for your time, and we will be watching your arguments on the Senate floor tomorrow, sir.
DERSHOWITZ: Thank you.
WALLACE: Up next, we'll bring in our Sunday group back in Washington for the latest on impeachment and the push for witnesses, as "FOX News Sunday" reports from Des Moines, the site of our town hall tonight with Mayor Pete Buttigieg.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NADLER: So far, I'm sad to say, I see a lot of senators voting for a cover-up, voting to deny witnesses, and absolutely indefensible vote, obviously, a treacherous vote.
REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): CBS News reported last night that a Trump confidant said that GOP senators were warned vote against your president, vote against the president and your head will be on a pike.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: House impeachment managers Jerry Nadler and Adam Schiff applying pressure on Senate Republicans, perhaps too much pressure, to get their votes to call witnesses in the trial of President Trump.
And it's time to have our Sunday group in Washington. A cofounder of "The Federalist," Ben Domenech, FOX News national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin, and former Democratic Congresswoman Jane Harman, director of the Wilson Center.
Ben, a few of the key swing or Republicans, like Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who Democrats have been counting on to vote their way, to call witnesses, to put them in a majority 51 votes so they can get some witnesses say they were offended by those remarks.
As we begin week two of the Senate trial, is calling witnesses more likely or less likely?
BEN DOMENECH, THE FEDERALIST: I think it's less likely, Chris, for a lot of different reasons but I think that was really a huge error on the part of the House managers. They've been advancing a case that I think they made as strongly as they -- as they really could, but in the end there, they resorted to the kind of behavior that I think was more in line with making ads back home as opposed to trying to convince any of those Republican senators to come along with them.
I think that was a huge error on their part and I think it's going to allow for a lot of these different members to say, hey, look, this looks even more partisan than it did when they started. We have some room here in order to not vote for additional witnesses. We think they've made a strong case, but we're not convinced.
WALLACE: Congresswoman, I want to put up one of those new FOX polls that we released this morning. Let's put it on the screen. As we said earlier, 48 percent now say the Senate already has enough information to decide the case, while 44 percent say they need more witness testimony.
Same question basically that I just asked Ben.
JANE HARMAN, WILSON CENTER DIRECTOR: Yes.
WALLACE: Did the House floor managers lose ground this week?
HARMAN: No. I think those two quotes were unfortunate. The one I love was Adam Schiff's. If truth doesn't matter, we're lost. I thought his quote on Thursday was amazing, but the extra nasty rhetoric on both sides is not helpful.
The clock is ticking in this sense. The Iowa caucuses are on February 3rd and Trump wants to deliver the State of the Union message on February 4th. So, this week is going to see a lot of pressure to shut this down.
My view is that there is a way to call witnesses. I think some Republicans will press for this. It only takes 51 votes. Let's do this right, let's make the process fair and senators have a right to make their own decisions.
I wasn't persuaded by Alan Dershowitz. I thought your interview was excellent, Chris. He was -- Alan was my Harvard law school professor, but I think there is enough information if senators want to vote to remove.
WALLACE: Jennifer, we understand that the White House defense team, which is going to begin its argument in earnest tomorrow, is going to go hard after Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden. A part of this is obviously part to make their argument that when the president was asking for an investigation, they're going to say it was really interested in corruption in Ukraine given the fact that the U.S. was going to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid.
But isn't part of this also to try to scuff up Joe Biden, who still at this point it looks like the most likely rival Democratic nominee for President Trump in the 2020 election?
JENNIFER GRIFFIN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely, Chris. I think that if you look at who the real jurors are in the Senate impeachment trial, it is not the senators who were sitting there. It is the American people who will be voting in the fall.
And both parties, Republicans -- and you saw this in the defense that was laid out yesterday even though it was just a precursor to what we will hear tomorrow, they are going to try to make this about Joe Biden and all eyes are going to be on can they do what the president was accused by Democrats of doing by trying to dig up dirt on Joe Biden?
And so, there is no real upside if there is any sort of deal to bring witnesses. The Republicans have already said they will insist on bringing Hunter Biden and Joe Biden if the Democrats get John Bolton and Mick Mulvaney. That is a nonstarter.
And both parties see that what the caucuses coming up, the Democrats certainly feel that the four senators who need to be out in Iowa campaigning are hurt the longer this goes on and there are many, many people on both sides who just feel this needs to be over with quickly because it is not playing well with the public and they want to leave this to the ballot box in some ways.
WALLACE: Ben, you said in your first answer you thought some of the statements were more for campaign ads than they were to try to persuade the jurors in a trial.
Even if they are not able to -- if they lose on impeachment, the Democrats do, can they conceivably gain, by forcing some of these swing seat senators in purple states like Susan Collins of Maine or Cory Gardner in Colorado to take a tough vote, either one on calling witnesses or two, on whether to acquit or remove the president.
If they can put them in a political box, might that help in terms not of the president, but in terms of their chances for winning reelection in November?
DOMENECH: You know, I think that someone like Cory Gardner, he really has no path other than sticking with the president. I really doubt that he's going to break away as much as there's been attention focused on him. I actually think that there's a number of senators on the Democratic side of the aisle who are also going to try to split their votes or find some way to send a message, including Joe Manchin from West Virginia, Kyrsten Sinema from Arizona, and a number of other senators as well.
I also think we do need to keep this in mind sort of going forward what's going to happen in the next 10 days. You're going to have in addition to that, Iowa vote, you're probably going to have this wrap up within the next week. You're going to have a vote probably going to be bipartisan, against removing the president, and you're going to have the president then give a State of the Union Address.
And I think that's all going to create a lot of momentum going into 2020 in ways that we don't fully understand yet what it's going to do to the situation but it's going to have a big impact.
WALLACE: Let me bring in -- I've got about a minute left, Congresswoman Harman. You know, even if they don't remove President Trump, this does have an impact. There are 30 whatever -- 33, 35 senators up for reelection.
Do you think that is perhaps on Chuck Schumer's mind? You know, maybe if I play this right I can move up from Senate minority leader to Senate majority leader?
HARMAN: There's no question that that's on his mind. I also think that Mitch McConnell is in tough shape, or somewhat tough shape in Kentucky and he doesn't need President Trump criticizing him before he went as primary.
So, one more fact, Chris. There could be a motion to censure. That takes 51 votes and that's being talked about. How that comes up is not clear. That was attempted in the Clinton impeachment, it failed. It was after the vote to acquit in the Senate.
But there might be some play there and I think a whole bunch of senators on both sides would exhale if they could find a way to get that done, because nobody applauds the conduct that we know about.
WALLACE: Thank you, panel. See you next Sunday.
When we come back we are live here in Iowa with entrepreneur Andrew Yang, who's on the trail here ahead of the first in the nation vote, as "FOX News Sunday" continues live from Des Moines, Iowa.
WALLACE: Coming up, Democratic candidates crisscrossed the Hawkeye State, making their final arguments ahead of the first vote of 2020.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
YANG: My administration will be able to draw people in from both sides of the aisle. (INAUDIBLE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: We'll ask candidate Andrew Yang about his strategy for the Iowa caucuses.
CHRIS WALLACE, FOX HOST: We're live in Des Moines, Iowa. Just eight days ahead of the first contest in the race for the Democratic nomination. In a moment, we'll speak with Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang.
But first, let's get the latest on the shape of the race from Peter Doocy here in Iowa.
PETER DOOCY, FOX CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris.
Circuits have been trying to keep caucus goers interested while senators have been stuck in D.C. at the impeachment trial, like Alexandria Ocasio- Cortez for Bernie Sanders.
REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ (D-NY): All of us have power. We just need to use it.
DOOCY (voice over): But during a brief break in that trial, senators broke for Iowa.
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We learned this morning that the -- the Senate would adjourn before 1:00. Got on a plane and here we are.
DOOCY: A new national Fox News poll of Democratic primary voters finds Joe Biden down four points since December, but still in first place, and Bernie Sanders up three points since last month, in second place, followed by Warren, Michael Bloomberg, Pete Buttigieg and Andrew Yang.
ANDREW YANG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We need you to caucus with this campaign on February 3rd to make sure this message does not die here in Iowa.
DOOCY: Late Saturday, Warren found out she won the endorsement of "The Des Moines Register."
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And Iowa has a big decision to make. A really big decision. You're -- you're going to lead the nation on this. There are a lot of people around the country who are afraid.
DOOCY: As Biden split his week in between New Hampshire and Iowa.
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Every four years, as some of you heard me say before, democracy begins here in Iowa.
DOOCY: The two polling leaders are both very familiar to voters here in Iowa and they're both hoping for different outcomes than last time because last time Sanders ran in 2016, he narrowly lost, and the last time Biden ran in 2008, he did not break 1 percent here and dropped out caucus night.
WALLACE: Peter Doocy on the campaign trail here and Iowa.
Peter, thank you.
And joining us now, Democratic Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang.
Welcome back to FOX NEWS SUNDAY, sir.
ANDREW YANG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Thanks for having me, Chris. It's great to be here.
WALLACE: No one has invested more in Iowa than you have in these last few months. Let's take a look.
You've held 151 events here and spend $5 million in ads and yet, in the latest Real Clear Politics average of polls in the state, you're running sixth with a little bit over 3 percent support. For an entrepreneur -- and I know you -- you pride yourself on that -- that is not a good cost-benefit analysis.
YANG: Well, Chris, the last poll that people consider the most authoritative had us at 5 percent and rising. And we've been getting bigger crowds, higher energy. We're going to surprise a lot of people on caucus night on February 3rd. I can guarantee you that.
I had a Democratic operative right here in the state who said that from what he's hearing on the ground, the polls underestimate our support and were going to grow and grow and peak when the voting starts.
WALLACE: OK. You know a lot of candidates who don't do well say that.
You've also spent a lot of time and a lot of money in New Hampshire. So let me ask you the -- the direct, hard question. If you don't finish in the top three or four in Iowa or New Hampshire, is it time to drop out?
YANG: Well, you know, Chris, and many people who have been paying attention to this race know, that we've been growing faster than any other candidate in a campaign. We have resilient grassroots support and we're going to be competing all the way through Super Tuesday and into the spring because we have a message that Americans know to be true, that we're in the midst of the greatest economic transformation in our country's history and we need a new way forward that will actually work for Americans in every part of the country, from rural towns to big cities.
WALLACE: Well, let's talk about that and let's talk about issues.
Your big idea is universal basic income, what you call a freedom dividend of $1,000 a month for every adult in the country. But a number of progressives, for instance Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who is supporting your opponent Bernie Sanders, she says it's regressive and that it is not enough to -- to make up for the basic income inequality in this country.
YANG: Well, Americans know instinctively that if you put a thousand dollars a month into our hands, it would find its way right back into our main street economies, make our families stronger, healthier, mentally healthier. It would create hundreds of thousands of jobs. It would improve the buying power, increase the buying power of over 90 percent of Americans.
And when I talk to Iowans right here in Creston and other parts of the state, they see that their main street stores are closing, that they're getting sucked dry because tech companies like Amazon are soaking up $20 billion in value a year and not paying a dime in taxes. This is not working for people here in Iowa and around the country. This is why we need the freedom dividend to actually put buying power directly into our citizens' hands.
WALLACE: The other big complaint about this idea is that instead of being on top of some government assistance programs, that the freedom dividend would be instead of some of those government programs.
On your website you talk about, quote, consolidating some welfare programs to pay for the freedom dividend, and your spokesman says, freedom dividend is meant to be an alternative to means tested welfare programs like food stamps and housing vouchers.
So, liberal critics say that basically this freedom dividend is going to keep struggling Americans still struggling.
YANG: Well, I talked to a family here in Iowa and what their frustration is, is that the better they do, the less they get in benefits. That doesn't work for families. It doesn't work for the American people.
So with the freedom dividend, if you get this thousand dollars and you start working and doing better, then you get to keep everything you make. This way the incentives are aligned with both the family and our country. And many people are frustrated with the makeup of our current program. We have to be able to improve on what we have in a way that will actually boost both families and the economy.
WALLACE: I want to change subjects dramatically for you.
Your wife, Evelyn, came out publicly recently and shared a very painful story about the fact that when she was pregnant she was molested by her own doctor.
Here is some of what she had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EVELYN YANG, WIFE OF ANDREW YANG: I didn't tell Andrew or my family because I didn't want to upset them.
I thought, this happened to me, I can -- I can process this. I can deal with it. I can compartmentalize it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: She says that when she finally told you, that you, quite understandably, cried.
I guess my question is, how painful was it for you to -- when you realized that she had decided to go through this by herself without sharing it with you for some months?
YANG: It was extraordinarily painful, Chris. The fact is, I was away many of the times when she had these appointment with her doctor. And so I felt like I'd failed her. I felt like if I'd been there, then this would not have happened to her. And it's heartbreaking that this happened to Evelyn. It's heartbreaking that it happened to anyone. And I'm so incredibly proud of the fact that --
WALLACE: What -- what do you hope -- let me ask, though -- let me just ask you this though, what do you hope women and men take from Evelyn's story?
YANG: Well, first, Evelyn's story is not unique to her. We've had this outpouring of support and gratitude from many women who, frankly, have been in similar situations. And so what we have to do as a country is acknowledge that these situations happen more often than we'd like to believe and that institutions, instead of protecting the doctor in this case, should be doing what they can to protect ourselves, our wives, our daughters, our mothers. We can do better than this as a country. And the gratitude and support that Evelyn has received over the last number of days has been really inspiring that we can do better.
WALLACE: Finally, you decided to say this week that you thought that the Democratic National Committee had made a big mistake in deciding not to hold any presidential debates on Fox. I guess really two questions. One, why did you decide to say it? And, two, after you did, what was the reaction from the DNC?
YANG: Well, it came up at an event here in Iowa, someone asked how we're going to bring the country together. And I thought, well, if you're going to bring the country together, you have to start by talking to Americans. And I pointed out this example of where the DNC decided not to have any of the presidential debates on Fox, which I thought was a mistake.
And I haven't had a direct conversation with the DNC. They've been in touch with people from my team. But I think it's this common sense, you know, to me, hopefully the DNC will adopt a different approach in the future because we have to bring the entire country together.
The problems that face us affect all of us and we need to -- to come together as a country to solve them.
WALLACE: Mr. Yang, thank you. We appreciate your coming on. Thank you for your time and safe travels on the campaign trail, sir.
YANG: Thank you, Chris. Hope to see you in person here in Iowa. Where going to surprise a lot of people February 3rd.
WALLACE: We like being surprised.
When we come back, we'll bring in a pair of Iowa insiders and what they're hearing from voters in the final week before the Iowa caucus.
Plus, what would you like to ask the panel about who will win Iowa? Just go to FaceBook or Twitter at FOX NEWS SUNDAY and we may use your questions on the air.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Joe Biden is the strongest candidate to do it. He beats Trump by the most nationally and in the states we have to win. This is no time to take a risk. We need our strongest candidate. Vote Biden. Beat Trump.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: Well, that is the latest Joe Biden ad that's been running on television almost nonstop in the three days we've been here in Iowa.
And we're joined now by a panel of Iowa political insiders. Dave Price, WHO-TV, political director, and Brianne Pfannenstiel, chief politics reporter for "The Des Moines Register."
And welcome to both of you.
BRIANNE PFANNENSTIEL, CHIEF POLITICAL REPORTER, "THE DES MOINES REGISTER": Thanks for having us.
DAVE PRICE, POLITICAL DIRECTOR, WHO-TV: Thank you.
WALLACE: So, Brianne, let me talk about -- to you first about the -- the Biden ad. No issue, no policy, just electability, vote Biden, beat Trump. Is that a winning message here in Iowa?
PFANNENSTIEL: Well, we've seen a lot of fluctuation in Iowa on the issues, on the leaders. But the one thing that's remained really consistent from the very beginning is Democratic caucus goers telling us that beating Trump is more important than anything else. It's more important than finding a candidate who agrees with them on everything.
So, in that sense, this is an incredibly important message. This idea of electability is exactly what Democrats are looking for right now.
WALLACE: Dave, I want to ask you about another one of the leading candidates. There was this exchange this week between Elizabeth Warren and a dad here in Iowa who had saved his own personal money to send his daughter to college.
Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just wanted to ask one question. My daughter's getting out of school. I've saved all my money. She doesn't have any student loans.
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: God bless you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Am I going to get my money back?
WARREN: Of course not.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So you're going to pay for people who didn't save any money. And those of us who did the right thing get screwed?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: So, Dave, that was a pretty powerful moment.
PRICE: No doubt. Yes.
WALLACE: And I -- I guess the question is, Warren seems to be falling back a little bit in the polls in Iowa. Did that exchange with that dad and also the sort of dustup with Bernie Sanders and her refusal to even shake his hand after the Iowa debate, has that hurt her here in Iowa?
PRICE: Well, that -- that video clip, I think, illustrates the conversations we've heard -- we've had with a lot of people on this topic, right, because you have some of these people, no doubt Warren has a passionate following, Bernie Sanders has a passionate following. But there are those here kind of pushing back against that idea about free stuff. Amy Klobuchar talks about this all the time, that that's not the way to win these people who left the party to go support Trump in '16 to try to get them back.
WALLACE: Here's the latest -- and it keeps changing -- here's the latest Real Clear Politics average of polls here in Iowa. As you can see, Biden and Sanders basically tied for first. Buttigieg and Warren knotted up a little ways back. But -- but the polls are all over the place. There's a new "New York Times" poll today which has Bernie Sanders -- Bernie Sanders seven points in the lead ahead of Biden -- or ahead of Buttigieg, rather.
So let me ask you both, as two of our experts here on the ground, looking at the ground games, talking to voters, sensing the passion of their supporters, I'm not asking you for a winner, but how do you handicap this race with eight days to go, Brianne?
PFANNENSTIEL: Well, you've definitely seen Bernie Sanders rise in these polls. And that's kind of reflecting what we've seen on the ground for a really long time. And that's the enthusiasm of his supporters.
Our last "Des Moines Register" poll showed that his supporters are more locked-in, they're more excited to caucus for him than any of the other candidates. About half of his supporters say they're extremely enthusiastic. That's 17-point ahead of Elizabeth Warren, his next closest competitor in that metric. And that really matters in a caucus.
WALLACE: But does that -- does that contradict what you said in the first answer about Biden, the idea that they want somebody who can beat Trump?
PFANNENSTIEL: Well, Bernie Sanders' supporters believe that he can beat Trump. And that's what, you know, what they're looking at right now. So we've seen him rise. We've seen Elizabeth Warren level off from her point earlier on.
But Iowa's ground game matters. Their organization on the ground matters. So if she -- if she has an edge, it's this field operation that she's built in this state that may help her on caucus night.
WALLACE: And, David, what about Biden? What about Buttigieg? Buttigieg, at the end of the year, was in first place. Now you can see him in fourth place. "The Times" poll, he's in second place. Biden and Buttigieg, what's your sense of them?
PRICE: If you look at organization and the juice here right now, and a good example last night, Joe Biden had an event in a Des Moines suburb of Ankeny. A couple hundred people there. It was all about electability, as you all talked about before. That's not super sexy, right? But they're looking up polls and his argument to people is, I can beat Trump. Here's how I can do it.
Bernie Sanders last night was about a half hour north of Des Moines in Ames, which is where Iowa State University is. They counted 1,800 people there. There was clearly a tremendous difference with that juice, with that energy there.
With Pete Buttigieg, you may have some who question nationally whether he's ready for the job, is he too young for the job, all that kind of stuff. He has a lot of organization. They've been doing a lot of training to get ready for caucus night and to train people on, when you go into this room, since these caucuses are so unique, and you can walk in there in the first round and support somebody but then change your mind perhaps if your candidate is not viable, doesn't have enough strength in that room and go to somebody else. So being somebody's second favorite can be really important.
They're training people extensively on how to capitalize this. They may not win the first round, but they think they can do well in the second round and they have the organization, they have the enthusiasm.
WALLACE: And, briefly, Dave, what about Klobuchar, because she seems -- coming from the neighboring state of Minnesota, she's been down in the polls.
PRICE: Put up lately.
WALLACE: But up lately. Doesn't -- but doesn't she have to do well in Iowa to -- to really carry on?
PRICE: That would be the expectation. And the polls seem to be going in her direction. She's be here a lot. Yang's been here a lot, as you mentioned, but she's been here a lot. But the pressure, you would think, is really steep on her to get that top three to really make a charge to come out of here.
WALLACE: We asked you for questions for the panel and on the issue of who is going to win in Iowa, we got a slightly different question on Twitter from Rocky53. Why is Iowa relevant? Why do we start there when it's not as diverse the way the country is? Isn't it a false start?
I'm sure you've heard this before, Brianne. How do you answer Rocky?
PFANNENSTIEL: Well, the question of why it's relevant, it's relevant because it's first. That's -- that's the point. It's the first vote. It's the first real metric.
But, I think, you know, a lot of people would look at the first four states together as a whole, that they paint a more reflective state of the country and its diversity. That there is no real, perfectly diverse state that is perfectly reflective of the country.
But one thing that is beneficial to starting in Iowa is that it's manageable. This is a state that candidates can travel in. You can come here and compete, even if you don't have millions of dollars and a war chest ready to campaign. You can get out, you can do the shoe leather face- to-face retail politics. You -- you don't have to have a ton of ads right at the beginning. So the idea that it gives a level playing field.
WALLACE: Dave, how -- and I'm sure you get asked this all the time too, why Iowa?
PRICE: Go back to 2000. You win the Iowa caucus, you get the Democratic nomination for president. It's that simple. You don't always become president, like Barack Obama did. Republican side, it hasn't worked out that way the last three cycles. They've nominated somebody -- who's won the caucuses, rather, who did not get the nomination later. So there's a track record here, you have to do well in Iowa to get that nomination.
WALLACE: And we've got just a minute left, Brianne.
From the Iowans' point of view, how important that they get this moment every four years where the whole political world focuses on them? How -- how important to Iowa voters?
PFANNENSTIEL: Iowans take this incredibly seriously. We joke about it, but it's true, you meet so many -- so many caucus goers out on the trail who say, I haven't decided who I'm going to support yet because I haven't met them all. So they want to shake their hand. They want to look them in the eye. They want to see them in person. And they take that responsibility really seriously.
WALLACE: And -- and compared -- and I've got 30 seconds for this. Compared to others, there seems to be a since people are really undecided this time and could change their mind in the last eight days.
PRICE: And quick anecdote. We've been following a group of nine undecided Democratic caucus goers for three months, OK? We just met with them the last time. Only four of the nine have finally decided. You still have five undecided. Some of them still have four people on their list. And at the end it goes back to what Brianne said early, at the end of the day, more than anything, they want to beat Donald Trump. They're not sure who can do it.
WALLACE: Brianne, Dave, thank you both. We'll see how the world turns in just eight days.
Up next, our "Power Player of the Week." He plays bad guys on TV, but works for good in real life.
WALLACE: And we're back now from The River Center here in Des Moines, Iowa.
In the age of social media, celebrities are finding new ways to connect with fans and use their star power for good.
Here's our "Power Player of the Week."
IAN BOHEN, ACTOR AND ADVOCATE: Social media has given us a voice that we normally didn't have. And that is incredible powerful.
WALLACE: Actor Ian Bohen is talking about channeling his on-screen roles into off-screen causes.
These days he plays Ryan on Paramount Network's runaway hit "Yellowstone." And he spent years as a villain on MTV's "Teen Wolf."
A cult hit with teens affected by bullying.
BOHEN: That show was largely about inclusivity, about being an outcast and still being OK.
WALLACE (on camera): How much good do you think you can do as an actor advocate?
BOHEN: I've met lots of -- of young kids at conventions that used to cut themselves and have had multiple suicide attempts and they'll come to me and same, watching the show that you did and the topics that were on it made me want to change and I'm here today.
WALLACE (voice over): We met Bohen when he was in Washington for another cause, The Vettys, an annual award ceremony honoring veterans.
BOHEN: The Suicide Prevention Vetty is given to the person or group that has demonstrated a significant impact or towards reducing veteran suicide.
WALLACE: Bohen's role on "Yellowstone" sparked his latest cause, Yellowstone National Park. He recently filmed a tour with scientists to call attention to the park's environment.
WALLACE (on camera): Is there a tangible impact of climate change on Yellowstone?
BOHEN: If it starts to get hotter earlier and things melt when they -- they shouldn't, it changes what food sources are available, and that's when things get really out of control.
WALLACE (voice over): Acting on "Yellowstone" has brought Bohen's career full-circle. His first big break was playing young Wyatt Earp in Kevin Costner's '90s movie about the law man. Now he's back on the frontier with Costner.
BOHEN: And we're playing the same cowboy stuff and we still kind of tell the same stories and it's -- it's -- it's fun.
WALLACE (on camera): What has he taught you about acting as a career?
BOHEN: One, that you can't only focus on one line of work.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Run, you're not a reserve agent anymore.
BOHEN: And how you carry yourself on set is really how people are going to respond to you more than anything. And if you can keep those two things going, and you've got a little talent and a little luck, you're probably going to be all right.
WALLACE (voice over): Bohen is diversifying. He directed two short films and is aiming for more.
BOHEN: So get on board, be epic with me.
WALLACE: In the meantime, he says doing some good in real life hasn't taken the fun out of playing bad guys on screen.
BOHEN: We're howling (ph) for a cure.
When you can play a bad character, you can excuse your bad behavior.
WALLACE (on camera): Do you have bad behavior you need to excuse?
BOHEN: Personally, I -- I have excised all of my own bad behavior. I get to do it on television, so I feel pretty good about that. And I am sleeping the sleep of the angels.
WALLACE: Now this program note. I'll see you back here tonight live from Des Moines for a town hall with Mayor Pete Buttigieg. That's 7:00 p.m. Eastern on Fox News Channel.
And that's it for now. Have a great week and we'll see you next FOX NEWS SUNDAY.
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