This is a rush transcript from "The Ingraham Angle," April 19, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
LAURA INGRAHAM, HOST: I'm Laura Ingraham. This is "The Ingraham Angle." We have a Fox News alert. Fox News has obtained those controversial Jim Comey memos about the meetings with President Trump. We have a member of the House Intel Committee reviewing the redacted and un-redacted versions, and he joins us a moment to tell us what's inside. Now, the memos described former FBI Director Comey's private interactions with President Trump. And the big question is, whether Comey leaked any classified information to the press. Here's what he said a short time ago after the memos were made public.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: I'm sure the special counsel is considering my recollection of those events, which are reflected in these memos. But it's my recollection that it's the evidence that will be used if there was ever a proceeding. These would be to show that I wrote it down at the time, sort of the bolster of the credibility of my recollection.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: And to sort this out and tell us what's inside, let's bring Republican Congressman Chris Stewart, a member of the House Intel Committee. Congressman--
REP. CHRIS STEWART, R—UTAH: Good evening.
INGRAHAM: Give us the take.
STEWART: Well, you know what, it shows me, and we haven't had a chance to go through all of it, most people haven't. But it shows me that Director Comey was dishonest with the president from the very beginning --
INGRAHAM: How so?
STEWART: -- and continues to be. Well, for example, He should have gone in and said, Mr. President, we have this piece of political garbage, it was funded by the DNC, it was funded by Hillary Clinton, pay no attention to it. And if anyone brings it up, we'll refute it, we'll say it's not credible. He said later on, it was salacious and unverified. He should have said that in strong words. Instead, what he said to the president is, the Russians are reporting, as if this was a credible Russian intelligence operation, when he knew that it wasn't. He knew that this wasn't some formal document the Russian intelligence had created and put together.
It was put together by Hillary Clinton, the DNC. He used a foreign agent, by the way, who used second and third-hand information from unidentified Russians that we don't even know who they were. He should have been honest with the president. And by the way, he's being dishonest with the president continually. He says that he thinks it's possible that the president is under some type of shadow, that the Russians have some. Well, he kind of walked that back a little bit today.
STEWART: Well, he should have walked it back because it's--
INGRAHAM: That was outrageous. I mean, it's outrageous for a former FBI director to say that.
STEWART: Well, it's possible he's got information on you, and on me and --
STEWART: -- on Director Comey. And -- but that's where -- that's the position he's taking on this, and he's trying to cast as deep a shadow as he possibly could over this.
INGRAHAM: Well, memos to the file are invariably self-serving documents. I remember when I was a white-collar criminal defense attorney, you always look at those like, well, let's go over what really happened. You know, OK, you're not going to write a memo to the file that makes you look like a fool or makes you look like a liar, or makes you look like you're misrepresenting the facts. You're going to write a memo to the file that memorializes events in a way that usually will make you look the best, in the best light. There was an interesting part of this -- one of these memos, it's not very long. You have the unredacted and redacted version. This is what he says in one of the memos. He said, I had dinner with President Trump in the Green Room at the White House last night at 6:30 p.m. I explained that he could always count on me to tell the truth. I said I don't do sneaky things. I don't leak. I don't do weasel moves.
INGRAHAM: What was that release in the memo do they -- Columbia professor to release it to the media? Was that leaking or was that just, you know, tiddlywinks?
STEWART: Well, and it's not the way a FBI director should respond or should act. And to be dishonest about it, and I got to tell you, Laura, too that the testimony that the director has provided before the committee in closed sessions does not comport at all with some of the things he's saying publicly right now. And --
INGRAHAM: Now, you can't discuss this because it's a closed session?
STEWART: That's right.
INGRAHAM: Or is it already out there because -- no?
STEWART: No, no, this hasn't been but we hope it will be and it should be. And by the way, this is another good example of information that should have been released the first time we asked. Why in the world does the Department of Justice feel like it's their responsibility to protect this person rather than their responsibility would to be be open and honest with the American people?
INGRAHAM: Now, what is another part of this memo where President Trump, rightly, as he did in the campaign, calls into question Andrew McCabe. And at that point, he says -- about this point, he asked me again about your guy, McCabe, and it does sound like Trump.
INGRAHAM: And whether he was going to be OK. I, again, affirmed Andy's ability and professionalism and said the president would come to see him and benefit from both. At that point, he already knew that Andrew McCabe probably had some problems, yet he was telling the president that McCabe was fine.
STEWART: Yes, and, you know, which brings me to another question. And that is, how is it that the director of the FBI had surrounded himself with what we know now are political hacks? Andrew McCabe, Mr. Pete Strzok, Lisa Page, others. Look, the FBI isn't full of progressives. It's not full of liberal activists. And yet, they're around the director, it sure seemed like he had selected an advanced and promoted people that certainly had a different view than many Americans.
INGRAHAM: Are you going to you bring Comey back up?
STEWART: We sure hope so. And we'll --
INGRAHAM: How are you going to make that happen?
STEWART: Well, he's going to be -- we're going to request that he come speak before the committee, and I expect --
STEWART: -- well, as you can say, I expect he's going to decline. I can't
imagine he's going to be --
INGRAHAM: Maybe he should just hang out in one of the Green Rooms upstairs because he's pretty much at MSNBC, I think he has a little binky and a little sleeping bag up there, staying up there a lot. So you should just go up there and interview.
STEWART: He's been pretty effective at selling his book, there's no doubt about it. But, you know, this is not about his book. This is about learning the truth and having him be accountable for some of the things that he said. Again, I don't expect he's going to be banging on our door and volunteering to come, but if he doesn't and if -- then we'll --
INGRAHAM: But why won't he? He's a very smart guy, University of Chicago Law School, incredible career in the government. I mean, he's a really -- he's a smart guy. If he can't withstand questioning from you, Congressman, and some of these other guys, he goes on with all these tough guy journalists. I mean, he can't withstand your question. Hey, stay there, stay right there because we have a lot more. We're also joined now by former FBI special agent Bobby Chacon and former Whitewater Deputy independent counsel Sol Wisenberg, and here in the studio with me in D.C., Democratic strategist and Washington attorney Scott Bolden.
Scott, I want to go to you. You have experienced both on the defense and the prosecution side, memos to the file. I mean, if you're not a practicing attorney, people think, oh, that's kind of nice, you write it's like a 'Dear Diary' memo to the file. But talk about, in your own practice, when you look at memos to the file, I mean, honestly, politics out of it for a moment.
INGRAHAM: Yes, politics out of it for the moment. People who write memos to the file, go.
SCOTT BOLDEN, FORMER CHAIRMAN, D.C. DEMOCRATIC PARTY: It's fundamental to litigation whether you're in the government or the white collar or government. It's -- to me, though, my memos to the file and the sources of memos to the file are factual. They're facts that you want to make memorable. And, I don't know whether they're self-serving but I will tell you this. We highlight points that are takeaways from those meetings. The FBI, these were pretty standard notes, if you will.
Now, you could read into whatever you want to read into them. But in the end, it's all about the facts. And, if you want to put in the various overlay to it, then that's not going to be very helpful, maybe politically but as a practical matter, it's not very helpful.
INGRAHAM: Well, nefarious only, I think, to the extent that he decided rather than just answering the committee's questions, he would get his point of view out by going through a Columbia professor friend who would then siphon the information out to journalists. That calls into question his motive.
INGRAHAM: Right, what was he worried about? What was he worried about there, Scott?
BOLDEN: Well, if he was worried about his reputation --
INGRAHAM: Thank you.
BOLDEN: He was absolutely worried about --
INGRAHAM: Thank you.
BOLDEN: -- his Andy --
INGRAHAM: Is that what the --
BOLDEN: -- and worried about Donald Trump lies about, you know -- what
about that though, Laura?
INGRAHAM: Is that the FBI director is supposed to be doing? The regulations applicable to this case and the law, Section 641, he should have fired him day one. Section 641 of the code demonstrates clearly, you cannot traffic documents, you cannot reveal documents, you cannot sell documents or trade them. He was trading these documents off for his own reputation, was he not?
BOLDEN: He was trying to protect his reputation --
INGRAHAM: On government computers?
BOLDEN: -- and the United States of America. And sure --
BOLDEN: -- those were his personal notes.
BOLDEN: He didn't break the law and doing it, otherwise he'd be prosecuted much like on Mr. McCabe.
INGRAHAM: By this FBI? Oh, yes.
All right, let's go to Sol. Sol, the underlying crime here, now that we see these memos, we see what he wrote in the sedan on the way off from the White House and so forth. What is the underlying crime?
SOLOMON WISENBERG, FORMER DEPUTY INDEPENDENT COUNSEL: Sol, whose underlying crime? The president or Comey's?
INGRAHAM: Yes. Or Comey's. Yes, good question, Sol. Take it away.
WISENBERG: Well, no, there's no underlying crime for the president reflected in these notes at all. Certainly, nothing approaching obstruction of justice. As is so often the case with President Trump, there's not an understanding of norms, norms that have evolved and how you deal with the FBI, how you interact with somebody like the FBI director. But there's nothing close to in obstruction of justice. I share the concern of the congressman, I don't think I would put it in the stark terms he did. If Director Comey knew at the time of this initial meeting where he was alone with the president and briefed him on the salacious Russia allegations, if he knew by that point in time, which I believe he did, who paid for these, that it was the DNC and Mrs. Clinton's campaign, I think it is extremely disappointing that he didn't reveal that to the president. And I think he definitely should have done so.
INGRAHAM: Well, that's a material fact, that's a material fact that goes to the motivations, perhaps even the credibility of the underlying allegations in the dossier. Let's go to Bobby. Bobby, on Jake Tapper's show, we had Comey, he was referencing whether he thought the information, I guess, that he transmitted to his pal was classified or not. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: Senator Grassley, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, says that there are seven memos. He says four of them are classified. Is that right?
JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: I don't know, because I don't have the memos. I don't know exactly how many there are. I know when I created some of them, they were classified. But I don't know how many of that group.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: OK, Bobby, I got to have you, take this away. He wrote the memo.
BOBBY CHACON, RETIRED FBI SPECIAL AGENT: I can't understand how many times because --
INGRAHAM: It's his memo, how does he not know?
CHACON: -- how many times his answer is I don't know. How could he not have them? He had copies. He provided copies to his friend in Columbia. He probably has those memos in his briefcase when he travels around. How can he not have these memos? How many times can we accept the answer that, I don't know, or I don't remember, when he's cornered on one of these questions? It's unfathomable that he doesn't know what's in those memos. That four of them are classified. He's got copies of them, he's probably has copies of them right then -- right there with him.
INGRAHAM: I'd say ignorance is the law (ph) --
CHACON: And one thing -- Laura, one thing that strikes me is that, you know, the FBI -- for the FBI director on January 6, that's four weeks before the inauguration, he's going immediately and creating these memos, which he already told us that he never had to do under President Obama, and it really sets up -- his mindset was that President Trump was an adversary right from the beginning before they even had a relationship. He's treating the president of the United States as his adversary. And it's clear from his creating these memos.
INGRAHAM: And Bobby, he said the first meeting, when he went into Trump Tower, he felt a lot of trepidation going into that meeting. He was afraid. Why was he afraid?
CHACON: Did he get queasy? Was he mildly nauseous?
INGRAHAM: Yes, nauseated, queasy -- I think it's nauseated, not nauseous. Otherwise he would be creating nausea and others. But I'm a grammatical not. Let's get to one question, I'm going to go to Scott. What would happen to a regular rank-and-file FBI agent if he sort of -- an answer to a committee, a congressman that, well, I don't -- you know, I wrote them, I don't know if they're classified, some of them are classified, I don't know. What would happen to that agent?
CHACON: His career would effectively be over. If he wasn't booted out of the FBI, his career as an investigator would be over because, you know, when you show a, you know, a lack of credibility, you can't be a witness anymore, and our the bread and butter in the FBI is to be, you know, a witness. I've seen agents suspended for significant amounts of time without pay, not for leaking, but for taking information from, say, of our FBI agents on the ground in Iraq and trying to transmit it to our law enforcement counterparts here because maybe it's a new way of creating an IED that they're finding over there. And then we want to transmit that to our, you know, say, a bomb tech partners on the LAPD or L.A. Sheriff (ph). And when that information --
INGRAHAM: All right.
CHACON: -- is passed without being declassified, they want to fire you or they want to extremely (ph) charge you.
INGRAHAM: Right, even though the intent was not there to compromise security. Scott?
BOLDEN: Well, here's how it'd go.
BOLDEN: Look at the first note. You have it right there. The first note says that Mr. Comey writes himself, he doesn't know how to classify these. These are his notes. He says, I'll tell you what, the default is secret, right there, it's right there. Now, what is so wrong with that?
INGRAHAM: Well, he didn't say that.
BOLDEN: And by the way --
INGRAHAM: He didn't say that.
BOLDEN: He said that in the very beginning.
INGRAHAM: He didn't say that to Jake Tapper. He just said he didn't know what was classified.
BOLDEN: Well, years later -- I'm sorry --
INGRAHAM: He can't remember what's classified or not?
BOLDEN: He didn't know how to classify them when he sent them to McCabe and others. What is so wrong with that?
INGRAHAM: It doesn't -- but it doesn't matter if it's classified or not. You cannot send government material to a third party under FBI regulations.
BOLDEN: It was not government material.
INGRAHAM: Wait a second, wait a second, Scott. He's creating a memo to the FBI file on his meeting -- not later, he went into the sedan after he went into the White House. He said at one point, it was five minutes, it was five minutes --
INGRAHAM: -- on a government computer. I will argue that case in court against you every day of the week --
BOLDEN: It was done in response to the bad conduct of Donald Trump.
BOLDEN: And he want it --
INGRAHAM: No, no, it was done on government time. It was done on government time on government property. Sol? Sol?
BOLDEN: That's not the standard.
INGRAHAM: I mean, what's your response to that? I mean, you -- if you are in the independent counsel's office, and you're deputy independent counsel, you're writing a memo to the file on a government computer after meeting with a government official, you send that over to a buddy out of law school and say, well, do what you want with it, get it to a journal, is that government property or not?
WISENBERG: Well, two -- first of all, two things. They're clearly not his personal notes. They're on a -- as you say, they're on a government computer, he's writing them to people who are professionals with him in the FBI. And whether it is classified or unclassified, it's government property and he doesn't have the right to send them out anywhere without getting permission from the proper authority. And by the way, Deputy A.G. Rosenstein, when he was in front of Congress two or three months ago, made that point. He was specifically asked that question, and he came up with the same answer that you did and that I do. They just simply aren't his personal notes. It's just --
INGRAHAM: Well, Congressman, why we don't (ph) we move off of that for a second. Congressman Stewart, the last memo, the president is clear that he's--if he's not a target, he wants people to know that, he wants to be able to be the president of the United States without the anvil of the investigation on his back. What is wrong with that? What is wrong with him saying, hey, if I'm not a target, can you get that out? Like he's not a political, you know, expert at that point. He just got into office five minutes ago.
STEWART: That's right.
INGRAHAM: So he's saying that -- now, they're making that to be such a big deal, oh, he's trying to manipulate the investigation, no, he's not. Comey already -- was basically indicating he wasn't a target.
STEWART: That's exactly right. Plus, I think he indicates in his memos that if there's something that's taking place --
STEWART: -- he wants to know. And I got to go back to this other thing because two other points, I think, are really important. First, don't leak especially if you don't know if they're classified, like he admits he doesn't know.
INGRAHAM: Well, that's a great point. I didn't think of that.
STEWART: The second point is -- look, I'm a former air force pilot, I dealt with classified information all the time, all we're asking is that Director Comey and Hillary Clinton be treated just like I would have been treated if I had been responsible for either leaking or disseminating information that was classified. And the last thing, and that is, Director Comey did not reveal to the president that this was paid for by the DNC, by Hillary Clinton, just like they did not reveal to the FISA court that it was paid for by Hillary Clinton and the DNC. That is a meaningful fact that should have been revealed.
BOLDEN: These are disputed facts, though. The fact that the FBI director did not disclose something in his conversations with the president, remember, the president and his campaign, since October of 2016, were under investigation, at least in connection to the number of contacts between those campaign members and Russian operatives. Bringing his testimony told you that before Congress under oath. Absolutely. And so, I don't think you know or he knew whether the president, at that juncture, was a target, subject, or just a witness.
INGRAHAM: Right, right, I understand.
WISENBERG: He told him he wasn't.
WISENBERG: He told him he wasn't --
INGRAHAM: He said he wasn't a target in the memos. I mean --
WISENBERG: He's writing the memo, Scott.
BOLDEN: But the first meeting. At that juncture --
INGRAHAM: And January --
BOLDEN: -- and it doesn't -- and by the way, this is a target, and subject, and witness, what are the investigation, those labels can go a lot of different places --
BOLDEN: --and then back.
BOLDEN: Those are changes.
INGRAHAM: -- one thing, I think, just as people, and again, it's hard to take politics out of this because we're all living in Washington, this is very heated. If we were under a cloud of suspicion, and the information that was being used to perhaps taint us or tar us, was developed by a mortal enemy, political or otherwise, or business, I think all of us as human beings would just want to know that. I mean, would want -- like, OK, wait a second. Now, it kind of makes sense why these inflammatory accusations are in there. As people, we would all want to know that. Now, whether that affects the legal case, I don't know. But, I think the fact that he did not reveal that, being as smart as he is, he's a smart guy, to me, is just very odd. He can't remember the shrimp scampi and the appetizer. I don't remember what I ate yesterday.
BOLDEN: Looking at the first meeting, he and the president talked about the unreliability of that report. There was no need to go deeper than that. To be honest with you, Donald Trump talks a lot more in these memos than James Comey does. So there's nothing offensive or nefarious about it. Stick to the facts because these memos are all about--
INGRAHAM: So, right, so why did he want to leak them, if they're embarrassing facts, why did he want to leak out?
BOLDEN: To protect his reputation and to protect the United States of America. Absolutely.
INGRAHAM: The United States of America?
BOLDEN: Of course.
INGRAHAM: OK, I don't know.
BOLDEN: Because his job is to protect the citizens.
BOLDEN: He's going to work for Donald Trump.
INGRAHAM: And so you're admitting he --
STEWART: You know --
INGRAHAM: -- Donald Trump an adversary?
BOLDEN: It's clear he let him go and he wanted a special prosecutor to ensure the integrity of this investigation.
STEWART: One of the great frustrations we've had for months now as you talk about protecting the United States of America, my heavens, the way you do that is you be honest with the American citizens. And the Justice Department and FBI have instructed at every turn, as we've requested?
BOLDEN: Has Donald Trump been honest with the American people?
INGRAHAM: I think he's been transparent -- he's been more transparent on what's been going on in this investigation in responding to there's no collusion.
BOLDEN: Lies, documented --
BOLDEN: --president doing the same period of time.
INGRAHAM: No collusion. Guys, we're out of time. We could do for a whole hour. And I love Scott Bolden.
BOLDEN: And another thing --
INGRAHAM: And Congressman. And there's so much more in the memos to get to. We're going to bring in Victor Davis Hanson and Ari Fleischer when we come back. And fascinating moments from Jim Comey's never-ending book tour. It's like shares (ph) farewell tour, it never ends.
INGRAHAM: I love redacted things, the big black, don't you love the big black? Don't you want to know what's behind that black? Something really boring, but it makes it look really official. Welcome back to The Ingraham Angle. We're continuing to cover the release of those Comey memos to the file. Why aren't powerful Trump bashers like Jim Comey being held to the same standards that special counsel Bob Mueller is applying to the president and his associates? For some answers, we go to Victor Davis Hanson, columnist and senior fellow at Stanford and Hoover Institute, Chris Han, former aide to Senator Chuck Schumer, and Ari Fleischer, press secretary to George W. Bush. Gentlemen, great to see all of you. Let's start with you, Ari, on this, your takeaway thus far in the discussion of these memos. We've all had a chance to read through them. Your thoughts?
ARI FLEISCHER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Well, I think there's really nothing new in here that we haven't heard before from James Comey except for three things, Laura, that I look through the memos, I read them all now. And I saw one is that the president told James Comey that he has serious reservations about National Security Advisor Mike Flynn's judgment. He said that very early about Mike Flynn.
Two, Eric Holder, the attorney general under Obama was smarter and more sophisticated and smoother than Loretta Lynch, the other attorney general under president Obama. And finally, he rebutted the notion in here, he said the White House is beautiful, compares favorably to MaraLago, rebutting those stories where President Trump said that the White House was a dump. Those are the only three things in here that I thought were new. We heard it all before.
INGRAHAM: Well, I think the president made it clear that if there was anything to be investigated, it should be investigated. I mean, the fact that he wanted the, you know, the FBI director to actually announce or say that, you know, he wasn't a target -- that's like a human reaction for someone who hasn't lived in Washington.
INGRAHAM: I don't have any problem with that whatsoever. Chris, your thoughts?
CHRIS HAN, FORMER AIDE TO SENATOR CHUCK SCHUMER: Well, look, I don't have a problem with him wanting, you know, things that were said about him investigated. I do have a problem with the loyalty thing. I think Jim Comey is going to probably have a problem with these things being released tonight because it's cutting into his book sales. I mean, half the books right in these memos that I just read for free, so I guess they don't have to buy the book, which I wasn't buying anyway, because quite frankly, I don't like the way he behaved in 2016 during the election. I think he put himself in his own position above, and inserted himself into politics in a way that no FBI director ever should.
INGRAHAM: Well, Scott Bolden who was our previous, you know, admitted that the reason Comey put those memos out to his pal at Columbia was that he was worried about his own reputation, the idea that this was some altruistic motive, Victor Davis Hanson, on the part of Jim Comey, like he was doing it for the nation, come on. He was doing it because Trump canned him and he didn't like that.
VICTOR DAVIS HANSON, SENIOR FELLOW, HOOVER INSTITUTION: Well, he was licking from a leaked memo. And remember, he went into the meeting intending to memorialize him. So he was careful. Trump had no idea that this conversation would ever get out. So, Comey had -- was sort of (ph) fixing the scene. And we were looking for two things in them, collusion and obstruction of justice, it's not there. What there is there is some very strange things that Ari mentioned but also, Trump has a cunning or pressing suspicion that McCabe is not trustworthy.
HANSON: That proved to be true. But it's sort of -- it's very funny because Robert Mueller has gone after obstruction, he's gone after lying to federal investigators, he's gone after leaking, he's gone after all of these supposed crimes with minor figures, but what he really did do, inadvertently, was he opened up a Pandora's box of equality under the law. So, on the other track, we had DOJ and FBI people who were all exposed to the allegations that Mueller is making against minor figures, predicated on the idea they thought Hillary Clinton was going to win the election and these would be swept under the rug. And now, with a McCabe referral and these memos that don't really show much, the fingers out of a dike and I think you're going to see a lot of exposure.
HAN: I don't think you could call General Flynn or Paul Manafort minor figures in the Trump campaign. I think that's just wrong. And the accusations against them are pretty serious. And I think they should be taken serious. And I --
HANSON: I don't think that --
HAN: -- that this points directly to the president but I do think that they did some bad things.
INGRAHAM: But Victor --
INGRAHAM: Yes, and I'll let Victor respond. I got that point, Chris. Victor --
INGRAHAM: -- your response.
HANSON: I don't think that--I don't think you found any collusion, which was the mandate of the special counsel, with either Manafort or Flynn. And I think you're going to find out that Flynn's confession was based on a text that was probably gained from a FISA court improperly and the investigators who talked to him said that he probably did not contradict the surveilled text and that you're going to see--
INGRAHAM: Guys--OK. Yes, OK, I don't want to get--Manafort is not really the part of this memo released tonight. But, we could talk about Manafort for a long time. And let's go to Ari on this. Ari, the more that you marinate in the stuff, the more you wonder how we got to this place. I mean, it really was--Victor is right. This was the Russians were manipulating Trump, and Trump was -- you know, was doing all these deals with Russia, and so that -- that's -- you know, Russia is going to be treated, you know, gingerly, and so nicely. Trump has been so tough on Russia, he's never going to be tough enough for the left who suddenly are like really anti-Russian when we really needed them in '80s, they were like Russia, Russia, Russia, is great but now Russia is like the big bad evil thing. But there is no collusion -- or in the '80s, when I was talking about the Soviet Union as a student journalist, Chris, I had a lot of my friends at Dart NAS, they were holding up signs, saying, you know, Ronnie Raygun. You know, Ronnie Raygun is going to blow up the world.
INGRAHAM: Give me a break. I mean, I want to go back to college highlights. But the left was sympathizing with the Russians and the Soviets of the '80s. Now, it's Russia bating morning, noon, and night. Ari, go ahead.
FLEISCHER: Laura, there's one bottom line. The bottom line is, there's a large group of people in this country who have not accepted the results of an election. And as a result of that, they will support anything that makes Donald Trump look bad, so they can hopefully throw him out of office. They've ginned it up now to the point where a special counsel has been named to investigate Donald Trump with no evidence that anybody knows of collusion. If collusion had taken place on it, it would have leaked by now. We don't know about it. We need to accept the results of the election and get this country back on track. And that's what this gets down to. I hope Mueller wraps this up -- wraps it up soon, announces there's no collusion. We'll see what happens to Manafort, we'll see what happens to Gates and the others. But as for the president and the future of this nation, he won. Let's get on with government business.
INGRAHAM: Victor Davis Hanson, and I'm going to get into -- Chris, go ahead.
HANSON: Yes, I think the issue with equality -- the real issue -- excuse me. The issue is really equality under the law.
INGRAHAM: Yes, Victor, we have to talk about --
HANSON: The issues of equality under the law.
INGRAHAM: Yes, whether people are going to be treated in a desperate fashion or the same under the same or similar circumstances.
INGRAHAM: But I have to ask about McCabe. We had a criminal referral now on Andrew McCabe. How significant is that? Again, Trump's instinct about him, he has really good political instincts, his political instinct on McCabe was, he was slippery. Go ahead.
HANSON: Oh, he knew from the beginning. And -- because he has good instincts, as you say, but McCabe has four instances where he may have not told the truth. And his testimony will be in conflict with James Comey and maybe Loretta Lynch's. And we'll see if the DOJ attorney uses the same types of tactics that Mueller does and leverages one of those three people to -- for a larger story because their testimonies are not compatible.
And again, either lying to Congress or lying to a federal investigator or obstructing justice with a FISA court is legal or it's not legal. And Mr. Mueller has reminded that those are things that cannot be legal. But what he didn't realize is that they applied far more forcefully to other people who have that exposure, and the American people are tired of it. I think we are seeing the result of that frustration.
LAURA INGRAHAM, FOX NEWS HOST: Another fantastic segment. And thanks so much to all three of you.
How to stop the swamp and its campaign to take on the president and his nominees? That's tonight's "Angle" when we come back.
INGRAHAM: How to defeat the swamp's efforts to take down Trump's nominees, that's the focus of tonight's "Angle." It has been 15 months since the Trump inauguration and yet there are still more than 500 positions across the federal government that have yet to be filled by Trump appointees. These range from assistant secretary of state for political military affairs to assistant secretary of Homeland Security for policy.
Now from my own experience in both the Education Department, the Transportation Department, and also at the White House, it is at that assistant secretary or maybe associate deputy level, that is where all the work gets done. The fault lies partly in the administration itself. Think about this, the Office of Presidential Personnel, it's really important, it runs the president's staffing, is now overburdened and understaffed. Obama's Office of Presidential Personnel had three times the staff of what Trump has. It takes people, actual employees in that office, to process names, shepherd the vetting process, and do real follow-through on people who are suggested to various positions. I realize that Trump wants to cut the size of government, but there are better places to cut then OPP. And of course most responsible for this travesty, though, of all these delays and all the foot dragging, are the Democrats.
Stopping Trump from putting his own people in key positions, what does it do? It slows down Trump's progress. And 431 of President Trump's nominees have received Senate confirmation. That's a far lower number than any other president at this point in their terms. Now, Democrats have continuously invoked a rule that requires 30 hours of debate on many of Trump's appointees. So that means that nominees wait an average of 84 days for confirmation. That's a lot longer also than previous administrations. More than 50 percent of Trump's nominees for federal judgeships are still awaiting confirmation. Democrats obstruction efforts are having a negative impact on the basic functions of our government. It causes inefficiencies, and it even can put our national security at risk.
The Senate has yet to act on the nominations of several key diplomatic posts, most notably, with Richard Grenell. The Harvard educated diplomat is President Trump's nominee to be ambassador for Germany and he is being held up by one Democrat senator, Jeff Merkley of Oregon. What could Mitch McConnell do to move things along as the Senate majority leader? He could tell Chuck Schumer the following. Hey, Chuck, the Senate is not going to recess until you all start dispensing with this 30 hour rule and start allowing votes on key nominees. These guys want to get home on the weekends. You don't think they'll start picking up the pace.
And if he needs to change or dispense with the filibuster rule, he may need to do that, too. You can't let this continue. Remember in 2013, then Senate majority leader Harry Reid blew up the filibuster rule for federal appointments in the executivebranch like cabinet officials and the judicial branch. And this is how Obama was able to pack the lower courts as he did. Trump could do the same here. Donald Trump has frankly been asking for that. But now some are looking to put another scalp on the wall, and I'm talking the Democrats. Who do they want? Mike Pompeo's scalp, Trump's CIA director who has been nominated for secretary of state. Now, during his confirmation hearing, America saw the Democrats' demonization game on full display. Auditioning for 2020 was New Jersey's Cory Booker.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CORY BOOKER, D—N.J.: Is being gay a perversion?
MIKE POMPEO, CIA DIRECTOR: Senator, when I was a politician I had a very clear view on whether it was appropriate for two same-sex persons to marry. I stand by that.
BOOKER: Do you believe that gay sex is a perversion, yes or no?
POMPEO: If I can --
BOOKER: Yes or no, sir, do you believe that gay sex is a perversion?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Now, Democrats claim to be against discrimination except when they are discriminating. So if you are someone who holds a traditional outlook, like any faithful Catholic for instance, other Christians, should we now assume that you need not apply to any of these positions?
Then there were swings and misses, like this one from senator Jeanne Shaheen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JEANNE SHAHEEN, D—N.H.: You were criticized at the CIA for undermining policies of the previous administration to improve diversity at the CIA.
POMPEO: I don't know the criticism that you're referring to. I have to tell you, I didn't undermine a single policy.
SHAHEEN: I would just say Michael Weinstein, who is a former Air Force officer who founded the Military Religious Freedom Foundation says that he has been seeing increasing complaints from those inside the intelligence community under your leadership.
POMPEO: The number of, we call them no fear complaints, the statutory requirements decreased from 2016 to 2017 by 40 percent.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: I like the "good." That is just pathetic. Come one. Even Dianne Feinstein, who is usually more reasonable in these matters and voted to confirm Pompeo as CIA director just last year, she's announced that she's voting against him because he's too hawkish at a time when we need more diplomacy. OK, he only traveled to North Korea over Easter weekend, met with Kim Jong-un, and laid the groundwork for President Trump's upcoming negotiations with the communist regime. That's all. That is truly historic and it could be a monumental move for peace. Don't worry about that, Di Fi. But the Democrats, let's face it. They don't care to let the facts get in the way. If the choice supporting the anti-Trump resistance or supporting policies that deliver real results, the Democrats are going to choose the resistance every time. It is despicable. Now, consider some of the suppose the reason that some senators are now opposing Pompeo.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MSNBC, 'MORNING JOE' MALE GUEST: He has devalued religious tolerance and women's reproductive rights and health care, not only in this country but around the world. I think he sets a poor example in terms of American values.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: American values? I don't know what you consider to be American, sir, but Mike Pompeo's life is a shining example of what sacrifice for nation is all about. First in his class at West Point, Harvard Law top of his class, popular congressman, stellar CIA director for the last year who won the respect and trust of the president of the United States. Thirty-nine in the Democratic caucus are expected to vote no already on Pompeo and nine are undecided. This is the time to test the so-called moderate Senate Democrats from states that Trump won. Smartly, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota just came out today as the first Democrat to support Pompeo's nomination, but no word yet on Senators Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, and Claire McCaskill of Missouri. When those guys are out campaigning for reelection, as they are now, they are always claiming that, oh, I'm open to working with the president on issues where it's important for the American public.
Well, let me talk to them here. Pompeo's nomination is a key issue for America. And though senators know as well as I do that he's more than a reasonable choice for secretary of state, he is an excellent choice. Each of these senators should be called out and pressured to break with her leftist, radical colleagues for the good of the nation. And if they don't vote for Pompeo, they are no more moderate than Cory Booker or Elizabeth Warren. And that's the "Angle."
When we come back, the fired Starbucks manager who called the cops on two black men is being painted as a racist. But could she actually sue for defamation? That debate next.
INGRAHAM: The two gentlemen at the center of the Starbucks racial controversy told their story on network TV this morning. They suggested that they were racially profiled when they failed to buy anything at the store and then refused to leave. The men were eventually arrested. So why isn't Starbucks, which is sympathetic to their story, releasing surveillance video from the store to back up their account? And should the employee be fired for calling the police sue Starbucks for defamation of character since she has now basically been tarred as a racist?
Let's bring in two lawyers, it's a fun debate, to take both sides of the issue. Attorney David Wohl in Los Angeles believes that employee definitely could have a case, and attorney David DiPietro Fort Lauderdale disagrees. Let's go to David D, I love having to Davids on. Let's go to David D. Why is this a difficult defamation claim to make?
DAVID DIPIETRO, ATTORNEY: It's s a very difficult defamation claim. It is all fun and games until the police show up, and then unfortunately, under this circumstance, it was no longer fun and games. Thereason why there is no defamation is Starbucks has done, presumably that is who she would sue for defamation, this manager, and they haven't said anything about her. They are actually in damage control and trying to save the reputation of their brand to such an extent that they're going to close 8,000 of their stores on Sunday to educate everybody.
INGRAHAM: We have to give the conversation really focused because closing of the stores, as fascinating as that training I'm sure is going to be, is not relevant to the defamation claims. Let's keep it really focused. You said they didn't say anything about her. This is what Howard Schultz said yesterday about the manager. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOWARD SCHULTZ, STARBUCKS EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN: And I think you have to say, in looking at the tape, that she demonstrated her own level of unconscious bias. And in looking at the tape, you ask yourself whether or not that in fact was racial profiling.
There's no doubt in my mind the reason they were called was because they were African-American.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: David W, obviously he did make a comment. Unless she had a pattern and practice of racist comments, racist activity, racially profiling people, being rude to -- disparately to whites, to blacks, to Latinos, I would take the case any day. Go ahead.
DAVID WOHL, ATTORNEY: Howard Schultz, get out your checkbook because what this manager did was follow company policy to a T as spelled by their PIO, their spokesperson. When a noncustomer comes and uses the facility, as these two men did, the bathroom, they are to be asked to leave. If they do not cooperate, they do not leave, law enforcement is to be contacted. That is exactly what she did. Law enforcement came, they asked these men to leave three times before they arrested those two men for trespassing. This woman now has been tarred and feathered as a racist by Howard Schultz with no evidence that race had anything to do with it. She was fired. And you are correct. She has a great defamation lawsuit and a wrongful termination lawsuit. And worse than that, Laura, what message has Starbucks sent now to employees, that if you suspect something is going down or going wrong, you better not call 911 or else you will be tarred and feathered as a racist and you will be fired. It is a horrible mess. But that woman, I'll tell you what, I would take her lawsuit in a heartbeat.
INGRAHAM: See something, don't say something. Here is what Donte Robinson said on "Good Morning America." He was one of the gentleman who was at Starbucks. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MALE GUEST, CBS 'THIS MORNING': What do you say to some people who say the rules are rules, that Starbucks has a policy, you violated that policy. The police asked you repeatedly to leave and you didn't. How do you respond to people who say that?
DONTE ROBINSON, ARRESTED AT STARBUCKS: What I say is I understand that. Rules are rules. But what's right is right and what's wrong is wrong. And that's in any situation, whether there is race involved or anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: I'm not following. Right is right, wrong is wrong, rules are rules. Starbucks does have this policy, David DiPietro, and now what does an employee at Starbucks do? You are in a difficult position, right? If you think -- the policy is, you have to buy something otherwise we can all just use Starbucks as our offices and be tech campers and sit there all day on our laptops. But it is a business and they do have seats for paying customers. Is that now not allowed? We can't enforce that rule because anyone is going to be afraid to do anything I think at this point.
DIPIETRO: That is a culture that Starbucks has created. How many of us have met people at Starbucks for business reasons and maybe not ordered something? So I think Starbucks --
INGRAHAM: Meet outside. You don't have a right to go and use -- you try to go over to Cafe Milano, let's take another example. Cafe Milano in D.C., bring a brown bag lunch, and you meet at lunch and say, I don't want anything, I'm meeting someone here. He'll be here any moment. You sit out and put out your bologna sandwich and you get your little milk and you sit there, like, oh, no, I'm OK. How long before you get thrown out of Milano?
DIPIETRO: What about a little diplomacy. Did they need to be arrested? In order to be arrested somebody has to say --
DIPIETRO: They could have just had them kicked out. Next time just have them --
INGRAHAM: They ask him to leave and they wouldn't leave.
DIPIETRO: Still somebody has to say arrest them. If the owner --
INGRAHAM: No, the police can arrest them.
WOHL: Laura, these men were cursing at the manager. They weren't just being quiet.
INGRAHAM: I want to see the tape.
WOHL: But let's face this. Everything Starbucks does is put through a filter of political correctness first. Starbucks does not want picketing. They don't want protesting. They don't want the social justice warriors claiming it's a racist organization, they don't want any of that. So what they have done is they've thrown that manager under the bus, trashed her reputation, ruined her life, all in the interest of maintaining their corporate brand. And she's got a huge lawsuit and I guarantee you that is going to be filed. And hey, God bless the lawyer that takes it.
INGRAHAM: She might have signed a release. We are all attorneys. I bet Starbucks, if I had to guess, don't you think they wrote her a check and made her sign a release and said bye-bye? They've got some smart lawyers at Starbucks. It's like Stormy Daniels, you can void the nondisclosure.
INGRAHAM: All right, guys, we are out of time.
DIPIETRO: I don't think a jury in Philadelphia is going to give her anything.
INGRAHAM: OK. Up next, we've got the fact that blow a hole in one of the left's major defenses sanctuary cities. Boy, that is heating up.
INGRAHAM: A shocking development to bring you tonight in the immigration debate. The Department of Homeland Security says that at least 142 suspected gang members were put on our streets last year because of sanctuary cities catch and release policies. Unbelievable. Now that flies in the face of what Democrats have repeatedly insisted is their real, true intent.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSE ARISTIMUNO: Let me be clear, anybody who in this country who is undocumented, who has committed serious crimes, they need to be deported.
MALE GUEST, CNN 'AC360': I am not defended any criminals. I think that would be ludicrous. And it doesn't make absolutely any sense.
REP. KAMALA HARRIS, D--CALI.: I believe that there needs to be serious, severe, and swift consequence when people commit serious and violent crimes. And certainly if they are undocumented they should be deported if they commit those serious and violent offenses.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Let's get the real story. National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd joins us from Skype from Montana, and his group sportsmen, Border Patrol agent Hector Garza is in San Antonio. Gentlemen, I knew it was bad. I didn't know it was this bad. But now we have the numbers, and the numbers do not live. Brandon, let's start with you. Are you thinking at this point that Democrats are going to start eating crow after all of these comments that, oh, we are not favor of that. That is not what century city policies actually do, that is not what they accomplish. Every night I hear something like this on this show.
BRANDON JUDD, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL BORDER PATROL COUNCIL: Laura, they are never going to admit wrongdoing. What they are going to do is they're going to spin it the best way that they can. But thank goodness for the citizens of California. Thank goodness that they are pushing back and they are giving President Trump the ground that he needs to continue to go after these cities, these states, and say we are not going to do this anymore. We are going to sue you, we're going to take you to court, we are going to get these policies declared illegal. Thank goodness.
INGRAHAM: Now, 37 jurisdictions, guys, are part of this. So 37 jurisdictions, all but one are sanctuary jurisdictions. L.A. itself, you saw on that map, had 16, Austin had 11. Santa Clara, California, which we don't delineate it this way but we do all the California all in one, but Santa Clara California, 22. Montgomery County, Maryland, which is just minutes from where we are broadcasting, had five gang members released and 84 from the year 2012 to 2018 in the shadow of the nation's capital, those are MS-13. Hector, let's go to you.
HECTOR GARZA, BORDER AGENT: So these sanctuary policies just encourage more illegal immigration and they encourage more crime within most cities. So many of these illegal alien criminals know that if they make it to California or to some of these sanctuary cities, they know that they are free from the law enforcement, and they don't have to worry about law enforcement and they will not be deported. That is why these sanctuary city policies are very, very dangerous. We see these criminals being released and then we also see them cross the border. And we definitely need to secure the border with that.
INGRAHAM: In just a moment, I'm going to share with our viewers the number of people who have crossed our border in March. I almost fell out of my chair when I read this. But first, I want to play Jamiel Shaw's father, who was on "FOX and Friends" this morning, speaking about Governor Jerry Brown given the fact he says we're not going to pay for any National Guard troops to do the work that Donald Trump wants us to do. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMIEL SHAW, FATHER OF SON KILLED BY AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT: He just doesn't even care about the victims, like we're just dead bodies or a piece of trash in the cemetery. And then he is defending these illegal alien gang bangers and criminals, holding them up like they are good people knowing from day one they broke into the country, and then they pillaged the communities, no one does anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Brandon, very quick reaction.
JUDD: First off, you have to feel for him. You have to feel for the family members of these victims. When you are talking about Maryland, we had that girl that was raped in school in a bathroom. We have got to stop this, we've got to secure our border, we've got to get behind the president.
INGRAHAM: That case was -- I think it was reported one way at first and then they had to -- there was plenty of other cases that are brutal and horrific, right in northern Virginia, by the way, and in Montgomery County. I told you guys I would reveal the number of border crossers. In just in March of this year, there was a huge spike -- 37,393 people crashed into our country. Many of them will be released back into society because of our ridiculous credible fear rule that has been abused. We don't have time to get into more of that. We did that last night. Fantastic segment, guys. We'll be right back.
INGRAHAM: Before we go, let's take a look at a tweet that came my way about the "Angle" tonight. Remember to tweet me, by the way, @IngrahamAngle. Tweet from Debbie, "Great show. Loved your Angle tonight. I agree with you that Mike Pompeo is a fantastic, super qualified candidate for secretary of state. The Dems just want to be obstinate at the cost to America. They can't stand the Trump picks great nominees." Mike Pompeo should be confirmed and Democrats who oppose him, it's pathetic and they should be called out, especially the moderate Democrats, supposedly moderate Democrats. That's all the time we have tonight.
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