Hannity: Setting the record straight about Michael Cohen

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This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," April 16, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST: Tucker, is there any news? Anything happening?

All right, thanks, Tucker. A great show as always.

Welcome to 'Hannity.'

Tonight, I got to give a special shout out to all of you liberals in the media and all across America, everyone out there that may not usually watch, tuning in, about some recent news about yours truly that came up today. Let not your heart be troubled. In a few minutes, we will address all of the rumors and speculation and you don't want to miss that at all.

Also, tonight, yes, the book tour has begun. After months of buildup, fired FBI Director James Comey has finally kicked off his quest to become rich and famous and just as we predicted, Comey is now trashing all things Trump, engaging in wild speculation, throwing everybody under the bus, and is the most pitied human being on earth. And as it turns out, James Comey's, quote, 'higher loyalty' is to James Comey.

Tonight, we're going to break down some of the most egregious moments from last night's interview.

Plus, we'll show you the questions that Clinton sycophant George Stephanopoulos should have asked last night in his softball sit-down interview. This was by far the worst interview I have ever seen.

Also tonight, we'll analyze Friday's U.S.-led military strikes in Syria. It's time for Assad to wake up. The weak, ineffective days of doing nothing of Obama are long gone. And we'll have that and so much more in tonight's important breaking news opening monologue.

(MUSIC)
HANNITY: We've got to start tonight with this. Today, for hours and hours, the media has been absolutely apoplectic and hyperventilating over some breaking news that I was listed in court today as a client for a long time Trump attorney Michael Cohen.

Take a look what I mean.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He stood up and he said the name 'Sean Hannity.'

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN: How did he say it? Was it like Sean Hannity?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sean Hannity.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: I'm not that vein. But in a few minutes, we'll address all the rampant speculation that couldn't be more wrong in so many ways. But, first, we have a lot more important news to cover, including the ongoing situation in Syria tonight.

You wouldn't know if you are watching fake news and CNN, conspiracy T.V. MSNBC today, but on Friday, the U.S. and our allies launched a large- scale aerial attack on multiple targets in Syria. The strike was a success.

Imagine this: Why isn't that front-page news everywhere? All 105 missiles hit their intended targets. No reports of civilian fatalities.

And I said many times, this administration's goal is not nation-building. We don't want that. But with this strike, the president is sending a clear message to the Assad regime -- you don't use these evil, insidious weapons. There will be severe consequences. You can't let men, women, and children, literally dying on television cameras like this. So disgraceful.

Also tonight, disgraced former FBI Director James Comey kicked off his much-anticipated book tour last night was none other than Clinton sycophant, Clinton spokesperson turned ABC journalist George Stephanopoulos.

Predictably, instead of taking the high road, discussing important topics - - well, Comey liked getting a little personal, and extremely -- well, a penny. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: He had impressively coiffed hair. It looks to be all things. I confess I stared at it pretty closely, and my reaction was, it must take a lot of time in the morning.

His tie was too long, as it always was. He looked slightly orange up close with small white half-moons under his eyes which I assume are from tanning goggles.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Comey is obsessed, let's see, with the size of the president's hands, his tie length, the color of his skin, the color of his eyes, how tall he is. This is a desperate attempt to just sell books and suck up to all his liberal friends in the media and trash someone he clearly hates.

These attacks are not surprising. What is shocking is the attack is attack Comey made next, comparing the sitting president of the United States to a mafia crime family, people involved in murder, extortion, racketeering, money laundering, drug dealing. Take a look at this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COMEY: I felt this effort to make us all -- maybe this wasn't their intention, but it's the way it felt to me -- to make us all amica nostra, all part of the messaging, all part of the effort, the bosses at the head of the table, and we're going to figure out together how to do this.

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS HOST: How strange is it to you to sit here and compare the president to a mob boss?

COMEY: Very strange. And I don't do it lightly. And I'm not trying to by that, by the way, suggest that President Trump is out breaking legs and shaking down shopkeepers. But instead, what I'm talking about is that leadership culture constantly comes back to me when I think about my experience with the Trump administration.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Think about this for a minute. For a former FBI director, one of the highest-ranking law enforcement officials in the country to compare a sitting president to a member of the mafia is disgusting and it's also irresponsible. Sadly, this salacious, reckless rhetoric didn't end there. Comey also speculated about the untrue, unverified, uncorroborated claims that were made in the Clinton bought and paid for a dossier. You know, the rumors, Trump, hookers, Ritz Carlton, Moscow, urinating on a bed -- without a shred of evidence, nothing, James Comey tells Stephanopoulos, well, this could possibly be true.

Well, maybe Martians were in the room as well. I mean, it's possible, right? Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COMEY: Honestly, I never thought these words would come out of my mouth but I don't know whether the current president of the United States was with prostitutes peeing on each other in Moscow in 2013. It's possible, but I don't know.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: This is key. He doesn't know. Watch this, Comey also answered this question about who paid for that salacious dossier with Russian lies and propaganda. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Did you tell him that the Steele dossier had been financed by his little opponents?

COMEY: No. I don't think I used that term Steele dossier. I just talked about additional material.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But did he have a right to know that?

COMEY: That it had been financed by his political opponents? I don't know the answer to that. It wasn't necessary for my goal, which was to alert him that we had this information.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: George Stephanopoulos, where is the follow-up? Why didn't you ask Comey to confirm if that dossier was used as the primary piece of information to obtain a FISA warrants on a Trump campaign associate weeks before the election? Why didn't you ask him, did he lie to the FISA court?

Did he withhold the sensitive nature that this document was in fact unverified, not corroborated? Why was it ever presented to a FISA court? Now, was it -- did you ever mention it, that Trump's political opponent in an election year paid for this thing, full of Russian lies? Of course, we have an outside foreign entity putting it together, Christopher Steele?

George, why didn't you ask Comey to respond to his former deputy, Andrew McCabe, who told the House Intel Committee, no surveillance warrant would have been sought were it not for the information in that dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele and the dossier information was essentially in acquiring warrants. Remember, the Grassley-Graham memo which found out that the bulk of the FISA application consisted of this unverified, uncorroborated Clinton bought and paid for Russian lies.

Once again, without any evidence to back up his claims, Comey also entertained the idea that Donald Trump, the sitting U.S. president, had been compromised by Russia. Really? I guess he wouldn't have bombed Syria on Friday night. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: You think the Russians have something on Donald Trump?

COMEY: I think it's possible. I don't know. These are more words I never thought I'd utter about a president of the United States, but it's possible.

STEPHANOPOULOS: That's stunning. You can say for certain that the president of United States is not compromised by the Russians?

COMEY: It is stunning and I wish I wasn't saying it, but it's just -- it's the truth. It always struck me, it still strikes me as unlikely, and I would have been able to say with high confidence about any other president I dealt with, but I can't. It's possible.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Again, where's the evidence? By the way, if you don't know if it's true, how does it get presented in a FISA court to get a warrant to spy to an American citizen? You would think as a former FBI director, you know, how can Comey make such a serious claim about a sitting U.S. president without anything to back it up?

And then the cherry on the cake of Comey's irresponsible, unhinged, personal tirade against Donald Trump was a new parroted the liberal talking point that Trump is unfit to serve. So, there you have it, sanctimonious Jim Comey casting judgment from his moral high ground and yet, he doesn't even know if the dossier is true but it was used to obtain a warrant. If you watch this show, you know that Comey may have committed a number of crimes and misdeeds, things that I believe need to be investigated, including leaking classified, privileged information to the press.

Watch how Comey tried to explain this away during this lovefest last night.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: He made a controversial decision to leak his memos to a friend, who read them to 'The New York Times.'

The president has tweeted innumerable times calling you a leaker. What's your response to President Trump?

COMEY: Well, look, it's true. I mean, I'm the one who testified about it. That's how people know about it. I gave that unclassified memo to my friend and asked him to give it to a reporter. That is entirely appropriate.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Once again, George, where is the follow-up? Why not ask Comey to explain how private communications between a sitting president and an FBI director are not confidential, privileged, classified?

Of course, this was not the first extremely shaky excuse that he had to go completely unchallenged. Remember, when Comey helped draft the letter exonerating Hillary Clinton from crimes that was in May, before she was even interviewed in July and 17 other key witnesses were interviewed. And, by the way, Peter Strzok ran that interviewed.

Listen to this pathetic and lame explanation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Critics say the fix was in from the start.

President Trump says you were writing the conclusion even before you interviewed Hillary Clinton. That is just wrong.

COMEY: Anybody who's actually done investigating knows that if you been investigating something for almost a year and you don't have a general sense of where it's likely to end up, you should be fired.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Wait a minute. How could you possibly know the likely outcome of a criminal investigation without even interviewing the main suspect or the 17 key witnesses? How many investigations start with an exoneration being written before an investigation?

James Comey, did you ever hear about 18 USC 793? How many people can store top-secret classified special access programming information on and on unauthorized server and not be charged with a crime and destroy such information?

And, by the way, how many people do you know that can delete 33,000 subpoenaed emails, acid washed, bleached bit the hard drive, beat the crap out of her BlackBerrys with hammers, and not get prosecuted for obstruction of justice.

Finally, could Comey's special treatment of Hillary Clinton, well, could that be tied to pressure from his own family? Now, we do know this after last night. We know that his entire family apparently attended the Women's March on Washington after his inauguration. His wife was an avid supporter of Hillary Clinton.

Wasn't this the same march where Madonna talked about dreaming to blowing up the White House? Take a look.

(BEGI8N VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: January 21st, 2017, one day after President Trump was sworn in, hundreds of thousands of demonstrators take to the streets. Among them, the wives and daughters of FBI Director James Comey.

PATRICE COMEY, WIFE OF JAMES COMEY: I wanted a women president really badly. I was devastated when she lost.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: So, did Jim Comey want to be the person who locked up Hillary Clinton while his daughters and wife are actively rooting for her to become the next president?

The fired FBI director was quick to cover his back in response to criticisms of how he handled the Clinton inquiry including one instance where he threw former Attorney General Loretta Lynch absolutely under the bus. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Did you think she was doing that to protect Hillary Clinton?

COMEY: I don't know. It worried me. It gave me an uncomfortable feeling because the Clinton campaign had been trying to come up with other words to describe it.

STEPHANOPOULOS: And the final straw, Lynch's meeting on an airport tarmac with President Bill Clinton.

COMEY: I decided I have to step -- as much as I like her -- I have to step away from her and show the American people the FBI's work separately. I actually thought, as bad as this will be for me personally, this is my obligation to protect the FBI and Justice Department. Given all that had gone on, the attorney general of the United States could not credibly announce this result and if she did, it would do corrosive damage to the institutions.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Loretta Lynch, she released a statement claiming that her actions were pursuant to long time Justice Department policy. Meanwhile, on a clip from last night's interview that was on air, Comey also took a shot at President Obama for publicly dismissing claims in Clinton's ongoing investigation.

And Comey told Stephanopoulos, quote: 'he's a very smart man and a lawyer and so, it surprised me, he shouldn't have done it, it was inappropriate.'

Despite the immense buildup surrounding the interview and all of the alleged explosive new developments, this book was supposed to reveal, the mainstream media's reaction was mixed, because without a doubt, over the next few weeks, many in the media, they're going to treat Comey as the honorable public servant who stood up to the left's most hated figure -- that being President Donald Trump. And you're not likely to see any pressing questions about how we let Clinton off the hook.

And you are also not likely be see questions about his rampant misconduct or how at least a dozen high-ranking FBI Justice Department officials have been demoted, forced to resign in disgrace, and someone fired in the case of Andrew McCabe during the last year of his reign as director.

Make no mistake. James Comey's book tour is off to a very predictable start. The media, while they continue to play up his multiple appearances, this nationwide tour for fame and fortune, it is much ado about nothing.

But there are serious legal issues at stake here.
Joining us now, former U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, Joe diGenova. And the author of the bestseller "Trumped Up: How the Criminalization of Political Differences Engenders Democracy," there's some important things.

Joe, I want to start with you tonight, not the least of which I think we got to go to the dossier issue, in large part, because when you look at the dossier, what do we see? He is saying to George Stephanopoulos, it's still unverified, and yet, Andrew McCabe is on record saying, oh, without the dossier, no warrant, and he's also -- we also know that the dossier made up the bulk of the application, according to the Grassley-Graham memo.

So, he is saying they never corroborated it and they brought that before a FISA court judge and an application? What does that say to you?

JOE DIGENOVA, FORMER U.S. ATTORNEY FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: This tortured and troubled man, who you saw last night on television, America's dirty cop, has destroyed the integrity, the reputation, and the legitimacy of the federal bureau of investigation single-handedly by his outrageous performance last night on ABC. It is inconceivable to me that anyone can now think that he performed a legitimate law enforcement function during the investigation of Hillary Clinton. And it is quite obvious that the dossier was a fake document, that it was absolutely purposefully used illegally by senior officials of the FBI and the Department of Justice.

Mr. Comey has lied repeatedly last night and regrettably, he lied to the FISA court, he encouraged others to lie to the FISA court, and regrettably, I think Mr. Comey has to be charged with crimes for falsely presenting information to a FISA court and for apparently lying regularly to Congress.

HANNITY: Alan Dershowitz, professor, I know you don't like criminalization of political differences. By the way, I share that. I share that. And it's gotten as worst as it's ever been.

But if you're going to go to a FISA court to spy on an opposition party campaign in an election year, and you are going to use unverified, uncorroborated documents that were bought and paid for by one campaign against the other, and a foreign national using Russian sources of all things to get at, is that a crime in Alan Dershowitz's book?

ALAN DERSHOWITZ, HARVARD LAW PROFESSOR: Well, first of all, Sean, I do want to say that I really think that you should have disclosed your relationship with Cohen when you talked about him on this show. You could have said that you had asked him for advice or whatever. But I think it would have been much, much better had you disclose that relationship.

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: -- the nature of it, Professor. I'm going to deal with this later in the show.

DERSHOWITZ: I understand.

HANNITY: It was minimal.

DERSHOWITZ: I understand. But you should have said that, and that would have been fair to say that it was minimal.

HANNITY: That's fine.

DERSHOWITZ: Look, you are in a tough position, because. A, you had to talk about Cohen and, B, you didn't want the fact that you had spoken to him to be revealed. You had the right, by the way, not to --

HANNITY: I do. I have the right to privacy.

DERSHOWITZ: Right.

HANNITY: I do.

DERSHOWITZ: But, you know, it's a complex situation when you are speaking to millions of people --

HANNITY: Professor, it was such a minor relationship in terms of it had to do with real estate and nothing political.

DERSHOWITZ: I understand that, I understand that.

As far Comey is concerned, look, I don't want to charge Comey with crimes. I agree with Comey when he said that he doesn't think that Trump should be impeached. We should leave it to the public. We should leave it to the public to decide whether to read his book, whether to be critical of him, and the public can judge.

I don't like trying to turn everything into crimes. You can make crimes out of almost anything if you take any complicated issue --

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Professor, I don't want to interrupt you. Professor --

DERSHOWITZ: Yes?

HANNITY: -- if you went into court and you brought information and you presented it to a judge --

DERSHOWITZ: Yes.

HANNITY: -- and you never verify that information as being true, and it's to get a warrant to spy on an American citizen?

DERSHOWITZ: Yes.

HANNITY: You better damned well know whether or not that information is accurate and disclosed to the judge that it is a political document and tell exactly who you know paid for it.

DERSHOWITZ: I agree with that. I do agree, too, that he said on television yesterday, that even today, he doesn't have confidence in it. And yet, to seek a warrant based on something that even after years, months, you don't have confidence, and raises a serious questions.

But as an experienced criminal lawyer, I think Joe would back me up on this, applications for warrants are often pretty sloppy. And they don't always have --

HANNITY: Sloppy is not an excuse.

DERSHOWITZ: -- everything is not always tied down. They use gossip and rumors sometimes.

HANNITY: Gossips and rumors?

(CROSSTALK)

DERSHOWITZ: It shouldn't happen. As a civil libertarian, I'm opposed to that.

DIGENOVA: I agree that the warrant process can sometimes be imperfect. But let me just say this about James Comey, and this particular warrant. Let us remember that James Comey's job was to charge people with crimes after he investigated them and recommended they be prosecuted. What he did in this particular case was knowingly and willfully abused the criminal process against an American citizen. And he did so purposely to influence a presidential campaign.

Now you know what? I would never have charged Hillary Clinton with anything beyond a misdemeanor in her case. If they had been smart, what they would have done was negotiated a deal with her. We'll give you a misdemeanor. You don't lose your civil rights, you continue to run for president. Everybody wins.

HANNITY: Joe, if I deleted 33,000 subpoenaed emails, and I acid washed my hard drive, and I beat up devices, again, for subpoenaed material, am I going to get a misdemeanor?

DIGENOVA: My point is very simple. James Comey drove the criminal process against some people like General Flynn and Manafort and took it away from other people, like Hillary Clinton. You know what? James Comey is a criminal. And he should be charged.

DERSHOWITZ: Look, every single libertarian should be concerned about --

HANNITY: I agree. That's not equal justice.

DERSHOWITZ: Right. Every civil libertarian should be concerned about selective justice. We have laws that are so broad and they apply -- on a show just before, we were talking about the former governor of Illinois, gets 14 years in prison for what people do every single day in state legislatures all over the country. And yet we prosecute him and throw the book at him.

We just have to have a single standard of justice for Republicans, for Democrats alike.

HANNITY: All right. I thank you both.

DIGENOVA: That's right. And Mr. Comey needs to have it applied to him.

HANNITY: We have a lot more to get into tonight. Newt Gingrich will join us.

Also, I will react to the media's hysteria today about yours truly. And I will give you the truth on that straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: In a self-serving interview, disgraced former FBI Director James Comey told former Clinton White House adviser George Stephanopoulos about his bizarre reaction to the news of his firing.

Let's watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Stunned by the news, Comey heads to the airport. It would be his last flight on the FBI jet.

So, you're in that private jet, basically alone. What did you do?

COMEY: I drink red wine from a paper coffee cup and just looked out at the lights of the country I love so much as we flew home.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Joining us now, FOX News contributor, former speaker of the House, and the creator of Defending America course, on his Website. Newt Gingrich is with us.

Sir, how are you?

NEWT GINGRICh, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: I'm doing well.

And I have to say, I don't think when this book came out and the book tour began, I didn't really expect the level of shrinkage. He's going from 6'8", by the end of the tour, he will be about 5'2". I mean, liberals are attacking him, the members of the Obama administration are attacking him, conservatives are attacking him.

He's managed to have a range of people described him as dishonest that is really pretty remarkable. And --

HANNITY: You know what my favorite was?

GINGRICH: I get -- what?

HANNITY: My favorite was, I think he is 6'8", the former FBI director, hiding -- trying to hide with the blue curtains to avoid the president. I am like, really? You got to be kidding me.

GINGRICH: You know, he's a very big guy physically. But I do think psychically, he's been shrinking with every interview.

And I got intrigued to this morning, so I went back and re-read Rod Rosenstein's report which he did to President Trump just before the president fired Comey and then I read the recently released inspector general's report on Andrew McCabe. And what's really sobering in here I think what Alan Dershowitz was saying is so important, you had the number one and number two people in the Federal Bureau of Investigation both engaged in behavior that clearly violated the law.

I mean, I think the whole depth, the idea that the top two people and what is our preeminent law enforcement agency in the entire country, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, literally now you've had an internal report by the inspector general saying McCabe clearly lied, you had this analysis by Rod Rosenstein, which if you have never read all of it, is really staggering in the degree to which it repudiates Comey. And that's what President Trump got just before he decided to fire him.

These two taken together, it is very sobering --

HANNITY: Let me --

GINGRICH: -- to think you had that depth of corruption on the very top of the FBI.

HANNITY: Then, look at all the people who have either been demoted or McCabe fired or people that will be fired I'm sure as a result of this. Then ultimately I do believe criminal action will be taken place.

I do want to go back to this important question. You know, we have a FISA court. I can't imagine James Comey saying, well, it could be true at this late date, meaning the Clinton bought and paid for Russian dossier. And that that was and he knew she paid for it, and that was the basis, the Grassley-Graham memo, the bulk of the application that they used to get the warrant to spy on a Trump campaign associate.

That to me is criminal. You don't lie before a judge, nor do you write exonerations before you even interview the person. He did that, too.

GINGRICH: Well, look, clearly, if you were to go through all of the falsehoods, whether you are talking to Congress or other circumstances, all of the things that Comey has done, clearly, they are a substantial number of indictable grounds. The case made today by a very senior attorney in Washington writing in a legal journal, that if you read the inspector general on McCabe, McCabe did exactly what General Flynn did.

Now look at how General Flynn has been treated and look where McCabe is at this minute. So, clearly, if you were to apply the law, and not just apply the social norms among good friends, both McCabe and Comey I think would be in very serious legal risk at this stage.

HANNITY: The new Comey standard, if we're going to use the Comey standard, number one, I guess everybody is part of a crime family, if you disagree with James Comey which is outrageous in and of itself, but the standard is, it might be unless presented to a judge, so the judge won't know who paid for it, the judge won't know it's unverified, and the judge will then issue a warrant to spy on an American citizen because it may be possible. It's possible.

GINGRICH: Well, look, the number one thing to recognize out of everything we've learned from James Comey is that this is the world according to Comey, and which Comey is always right. So at every stage, if somebody else disagreed, he is disappointed in them.

This is a point made by Rosenstein in his memo to the president. That Comey seems incapable of learning from his mistakes. Or incapable of even thinking that there are mistakes.

And so, I mean, the level of danger that we had in having an FBI director who had this level of megalomania, and who decided that he would supplant the attorney general, whether you like or dislike Loretta Lynch, she was the attorney general.

No FBI director has the authority to decide that he will now replace her and yet, that's what he did, and in explaining why he had to announce what he did about Hillary Clinton. That he was protecting an institution. It wasn't his job to protect the institution. It's an act of stunning arrogance to believe that he was the only perfect person in an otherwise flawed world.

HANNITY: Yes. All right, Mr. Speaker, always good to hear your insight. We have a lot more news to cover. We're not done exposing James Comey and his self-righteousness and frankly, outright lies and misbehavior.

And later, I will respond to the Michael Cohen ordeal. The media is obsessed with it, straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: This exclusive interview with George Stephanopoulos, there was one man who loomed large, and that James Comey himself. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, CHIEF ANCHOR, ABC NEWS: What did it feel like to be James Comey in the last 10 days of that campaign after you send the letter?

JAMES COMEY, FORMER UNITED STATES FBI DIRECTOR: It sucked. I walked around vaguely stick to my stomach. Feeling beaten down. I felt like I was totally alone. That everybody hated me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right. Joining us now with reaction, the author of "The Unmaking of the President 2016, how FBI Director James Comey lost Hillary Clinton the Presidency," Lanny Davis and author David Limbaugh.

Full disclosure, David has been my career attorney and has negotiated every contract in radio and TV. Lanny, I think I might be wrong, I think I once gave you in a restaurant $5, and we have attorney-client privilege. Isn't that true?

LANNY DAVIS, AUTHOR, THE UNMAKING OF THE PRESIDENT 2016: I've never been your attorney because you don't trust me enough to give you advice.

HANNITY: Hello, David.

DAVID LIMBAUGH, AUTHOR & ATTORNEY: Hey, Lanny.

HANNITY: I might have -- I might been a haze of having a drink. All right, you dislike Lanny -- you dislike Comey for a bunch of other reasons and it's funny because every liberal hated Comey. Hated him with a passion. And people like Harry Reid, he needs to go. You really believe the cost Hillary the election. Putting that aside, do you think Comey has ethical issues and perhaps even legal ones?

DAVIS: Look, until yesterday, I've never used the L word about James Comey, which is the 'lie' word. I trusted many people like Eric Holder and many other people who respected him and who just said he exercise extremely poor judgment, and that's the book that I wrote, that the whole world circulates around Jim Comey and he's evidence of a narcissist.

But yesterday, I decided it was time to call him out before the Stephanopoulos interview. He lied when he said he had to sent his letter to Congress because he was obligated, because he promised them. The transcript disputes that and he knows that. That makes it a knowing falsehood, which is a lie.

HANNITY: You know, David, I brought up the other issues earlier, which is this dossier that he doesn't know to this day is true, and a lot of which has been proven false. That was used by him and others to get a FISA warrant to spy on an American and of course he exonerated Hillary before he ever interviewed her or 17 other key witnesses months before.

And then I look at James Comey and the pettiness and the bitterness that he had towards Donald Trump. And I am thinking, this is a very troubled man at this point.

LIMBAUGH: You know, he started off, I gave him the benefit of that outcome I think he might be an honorable guy. But he presents himself as a moored paragon and someone who is discreet and wants to uphold the integrity of the FBI and the DOJ when in fact, he is like a gossipy little girl, he's someone who is not discrete, he has written an inside baseball book discussing things about which there is an active investigation when he was the lead investigator.

Anybody will objectively tell you that that's improper. I cannot believe that this guy -- and I think it's an overused the term, 'narcissist,' So let's just call this guy a publicity hound. He's a man without a country. Nobody likes him anymore. And there is good reason for that.

I mean, he has done everything to remote himself, not to promote the FBI.

HANNITY: Do you see any lawbreaking, though?

LIMBAUGH: I don't know. I don't want to say more than the facts allow. Certainly possible to use his term. It's certainly possible that he was involve--

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Everything is possible.

LIMBAUGH: No--

HANNITY: I think becoming a concern of it is possible. Well, you know, but the idea that he would say it's possible that Trump obstructed justice, that is clearly inflammatory and he knows better and he ought to be ashamed. It's possible that there's problems with the golden shower thing, it's possible that some of these other things--

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: What about lying to a FISA judge to get a FISA warrant?

LIMBAUGH: If he in fact did that, I can't imagine that not incriminating or putting him in jail.

HANNITY: You know, Lanny, I got to believe on your side of the aisle, you have a civil libertarian streak in you and I think you feel as I do. The FBI can't put in a FISA application unverified information. They can't tell, they can't omit that one candidate paid for the Russian lies that came from a foreign national. You can't omit that to a judge. God help you.

DAVIS: First of all, I want to address the double standard that I'm hearing because Donald Trump praised James Comey for sending that letter that was against 50 years in Justice Department--

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: All right. Let's stick to the issue. You can't do -- you can't lie to a judge, Lanny--

(CROSSTALK)

DAVIS: And the FISA warrant was constructed by several layers of people at the Justice Department and approved five-time spy agent so I--

HANNITY: Is it wrong to -- is it wrong use unverified information before a judge? Yes or no?

DAVIS: It is certainly wrong if it was intentionally false and unverified. It's up to the judge to determine that.

HANNITY: If they didn't know, then they didn't know.

DAVIS: But let me go back to the topic at hand, guys. I agree with David once in a while, I agree that when James Comey held a press conference, and characterized evidence in a criminal investigation which he was conducting as 'extremely careless conduct,' he violates every role of due process and that is what he did with Hillary Clinton and what Justice Department will say to me is, you don't publicly shame and not charge. That's what James Comey did--

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Lanny, why he need to do it with 33,000 subpoenaed emails, and I acid wash my hard drive and beat up my devices to get rid of them, is that obstruction of justice? Is that obstruction?

DAVIS: Not only did not that happen, you changed the subject. James Comey deserves credit--

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: She didn't delete -- she didn't 33,000 emails or she did?

DAVIS: The only thing he deserves credit--

HANNITY: Did she delete 33,000 emails?

DAVIS: No, she -- her personal emails the same way you delete your personal emails.

HANNITY: OK.

DAVIS: So change the topic all you want, Sean.

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Did she acid wash her hard drive and beat up devices or have somebody beat them up for her?

DAVIS: I don't know what you mean by acid wash. I know that she deleted her emails--

HANNITY: Bleach bit.

DAVIS: -- the way everybody else did, and you just changed the topic so I return to James Comey.

HANNITY: I never heard about bleach bit before Hillary. All right. I got to go.

DAVIS: You praise what Comey did with the letter and so did Donald Trump and that is hypocrisy.

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: I'm asking if I deleted it, I'd think I'd be in jail tonight? And that's my--

DAVIS: All right. You just want to go off on your own tangents and I won't go there with you except to say once stated Limbaugh and I agree that--

HANNITY: No, except that you can't do that. That's changing an investigation.

DAVIS: -- James Comey isn't allowed to express a personal opinion as an investigator. He also should have been fired for that offense--

HANNITY: I understand your criticism. I get it. All right. I got to roll. Thank you both. Good to see you.

When we come back, Sean Spicer, he was in the meeting when Comey briefed President Trump when he was president-elect about the dossier, and he is saying Comey's account is completely misleading. He was there. We'll check in with him and Dr. Gorka and my response about being named in court today as it relates to Michael Cohen. Straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: During his interview with ABC, former FBI Director James Comey talked about the meeting where he briefed president-elect Trump about the salacious and unverified to Steele dossier. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Did you tell him the Steele dossier had been financed by his political opponents?

COMEY: No. I don't think I used the term Steele dossier, I just talked about additional material.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But did he have a right to know that?

COMEY: That it had been financed by his political opponents? I don't know the answer to that. It wasn't necessary for my goal, which was to alert him that we had this information.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Here with reaction is former White House press secretary, Sean Spicer. He was actually in a meeting when Comey did brief then President- elect Trump about the dossier. And former deputy assistant to President Trump, Fox News national security strategist, Dr. Sebastian Gorka. All right, Sean you were in the room, you don't see it the same way, you don't recall it the same way?

SEAN SPICER, FORMER UNITED STATES WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: No, I think the account that director Comey has in his book is at best misleading. So let me laid out for you. On January 11th, before intelligence chief came out to Trump tower they were about to issue in a report on their findings of Russian involvement in the election and wanted us to be aware of what that report was going to be.

We sat down, how does that report given to us, at which time, there was a series of questions that were asked by Reince Priebus, General Flynn, Tom Bossert, the homeland security adviser, and Vice President Mike Pence.

After the discussion ended, and again, a key point and that is that there was a lot of questions back and forth, which Director Comey suggest did not occur. But I just named four of those people that definitely ask questions. Then at that point, Director Comey said to the president-elect, may I see privately in the back of the room?

We got up, the rest of us exited the room, the secure room where we'd receive the briefing and then went outside. At that time, as you may recall, there was a little bit of distrust amongst some of the political appointees, Director Clapper and Director Brennan so we ran by the statement that we are going to issue to make sure that was in accord with the classified nature of the briefing, and that they wouldn't going to differ in terms of their account of the meeting that we just had.

And Comey goes on to his book to talk about how it became a P.R. session. That's not true. That's not how it went down. And again, as I noted a lot of people do that.

Further, as Comey himself says in his reporting here, he verbally briefed the president on some of the salacious and unproven allegations. CNN went on to report falsely that he had been given a two page report. That report wasn't actually even done at the time that we were briefed. So both Director Comey's account of it is misleading and CNN's reporting of that meeting are false.

HANNITY: All right. Let me go to Dr. Gorka. So, you know, the big issue for the media, for over a year, has been, Russian influence in the election. And James Comey knew before the election Hillary paid a foreign national, Christopher's Steele, through Perkins Coie, for Fusion GPS, and they paid for Russian lies to manipulate the American people.

And then they used it to get a FISA warrant. And then they exonerated Hillary after Peter Strzok interviewed her and they brought the exoneration months earlier. And I'm trying to think, you can't make this irony up when you think about it.

SEBASTIAN GORKA, NATIONAL SECURITY STRATEGIST, FOX NEWS: It's not just ironic. You look at the last 16 months, what do we now? We have no evidence of Russian collusion between the president and his campaign. But we know for certain that James Comey is a liar. We know that James Comey leaks to the media. We know the fact that he tries to get his buddy, Robert Mueller, to become a special prosecutor investigating the president, who he didn't want to win the election, his wife didn't want Trump to win, nor did Comey, these are the facts of the case.

He has done more single-handedly to damage the FBI than J. Edgar Hoover has done. And if you look at the fact that in his interview yesterday, he is propagating the narrative of the president potentially being a pawn of the Russians, what is he doing? With zero evidence, he is actually assisting in a Russian misinformation operation. That's what James Comey is doing.

HANNITY: And he presented that phony information to a court to spy on an American, Sean.

SPICER: I think, look, it is not just misleading. What he is saying now is frankly irresponsible. To go out there and profess loyalty and concern for these institutions and then openly speculate with no evidence is highly irresponsible.

Now he's free to do it, it's a free country. You can do it. But you can't go around and talk about the loyalty that you have to the institutions to this country and openly speculate about things of that nature and not wonder, and not have the opposite effect.

There is a reason I think that the director's book, and his account, and appearance are getting panned. And that's because I think he has -- it's become brought him, his image, and his attempts to sell books and not the truth.

HANNITY: Last word, Dr. Gorka.

GORKA: I will just tell you what I received recently, a text from an FBI agent, a senior one. This person told me for the first time in her life, she is ashamed to work for the FBI. And that, she said, is thanks to James Comey. That's what he has done, and the name of his ego and his book.

HANNITY: Well, we got to remember it's not the rank and file.

GORKA: Yes.

HANNITY: As a matter of fact, 99.9 percent do a great job protecting us every day. All right. The moment you've been waiting for, when we come back my reaction to all the Michael Cohen hysteria in court today as it relates to me. That is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: All right, there's been all kinds of wild speculation from the mainstream media today about me and President Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen, after my name was mentioned in court proceedings earlier today.

Now predictably, without knowing all or frankly, any of the facts, the media went absolutely insane. Wall-to-wall, hour by hour coverage of yours truly.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He stood up and he said the name 'Sean Hannity.'

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How did he say it? Was is it like, Sean Hannity? Sean Hannity.

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TAPPER: Sean Hannity. Hannity. Hannity.

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(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right. Am I surprised by any of this? No, of course not. But this is what the media in this country does.

Let me set the record straight. Here's the truth. Michael Cohen never represented me in any legal matter. I never retained his services. I never received an invoice. I never paid Michael Cohen for legal fees. I did have occasional brief conversations with Michael Cohen. He is a great attorney, about legal questions I had. Or I was looking for input and perspective.

My discussions with Michael Cohen never rose to any level that I needed to tell anyone that I was asking him questions. And to be absolutely clear, they never involved any matter, any -- sorry to disappoint so many -- matter between me or third party, third group at all.

And my questions exclusively almost focused on real estate. I said many times on my radio show, I hate the stock market, I prefer real estate. Michael knows real estate.

So in response to all the wild speculation, I want to set the record straight here tonight. I never asked Michael Cohen to bring this proceeding on my behalf. I have no personal interest in this legal matter. That's all there is. Nothing more.

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