Joe Biden is reportedly upset that Barack Obama is meeting with Beto O'Rourke, other potential 2020 challengers

This is a rush transcript from "The Five," December 27, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

DANA PERINO, HOST: Hello, everyone. I'm Dana Perino along with Morgan Ortagus, Marie -- excuse me -- Marie Harf, Lawrence Jones, and Tom Shillue. It's 5 o'clock in New York City, and felling a little better, and this is The Five.

2020 Democratic frontrunner, Joe Biden, reportedly feeling burned by his former boss according to Vanity Fair. The former V.P. is upset over Barack Obama meeting with other potential 2020 contenders like Beto O'Rourke before he's officially made his decision. A Biden spokesperson pushing back against the story calling it unequivocally false.

Biden may have some other obstacles in his way, a new poll showing 59 percent of Democratic and independent voters are excited for someone entirely new to run for president. Biden comes in second followed by Bernie Sanders and Beto O'Rourke. And 70 percent of those same voters say Hillary Clinton should not run again.

President Trump going after Democrats as we have more of that? No, we don't. Is that just a poll? OK. Well, the teleprompter is working very well today. Marie Harf, now that you're here. I don't think -- even if Biden were upset, I don't think he would say so because it's just obvious that Obama is going to have to meet with lots of Democrats before 2020, right?

MARIE HARF, HOST: Yes. And I actually don't think -- I mean, Joe Biden is an adult, right? He's been in politics a long time. He and Barack Obama are very close. I don't think he's probably very upset about this. It's interesting though in that poll, 59 percent want someone new. I think that we see that in both parties, right? That's how we got Donald Trump. But Joe Biden was at 53 percent.

So, Joe Biden knows that he's very popular in the party, he's popular among independents, and Barack Obama is going to have to meet with lots of people. I do think you will see President Obama trying to keep his powder dry a little bit and not really wait into what will be what? Twenty five, thirty people in Democratic primary here?

But if Joe Biden wants to run, Joe Biden will have a lot of support among people like Barack Obama, even if he doesn't endorse him, he was his vice president for 8 years. I don't think he's mad about Beto getting a meeting, like he has thicker skin than that.

LAWRENCE JONES, HOST: Yeah. But he was his vice president the last election as well, and we know that the party leadership as well as the president all did the garden meetings saying that, you know, he wasn't going to run. And this was all because Hillary Clinton was the chosen candidate.

PERINO: Right.

HARF: That's not why Biden didn't run.

JONES: And so, I do think -- I do think that there is -- he will be frustrated if the president doesn't get behind him. Of course, he's a -- he understands that the president -- he's a former president, has to meet with all the candidates. But the former vice president is going to be expecting President Obama to get behind him because he did step aside and let Hillary Clinton run.

PERINO: It's not easy to tell somebody that maybe it's not -- it's past their time, right? It's not easy to tell someone that. We're not elephants.

TOM SHILLUE, HOST: It's -- you know, you see the word cult of (ph) the person -- or the phrase cult of (ph) personality about the Republicans that the Republican Party is now a cult of (ph) personality and it's all about Donald Trump.

I think it is -- that is not true. The cult of (ph) personality is the Democrat Party. The cult is Donald Trump, but they're an anti-Trump party and that's all they are at this point. That's why they need a new personality. They're desperately in search of a personality because they think that Trump is all about personality, he's not. It's really about policy. They liked his policies, not his personality. They didn't want just someone new, Marie, they wanted Donald Trump. It wasn't anyone new.

And so, they are searching for -- that's why Beto is such a big thing because they're not really sure about, you know, why they like him but they think he's a personality that can take on Trump. That's all they want.

PERINO: They want -- they just want someone who's got all spark, Morgan.

MORGAN ORTAGUS, HOST: Maybe. You know, I'm really looking forward to this primary because it's someone new.

PERINO: Me too.

ORTAGUS: Who is in the Republican primary, it was vicious and awful. And this looks like the Republican primary times like a thousand, like, just get out the popcorn. I can't wait.

What's ironic to me is how the Dem activist base is sort of freaking out with the top three people in polling are all white men. We've seen a lot of people that have a problem with that. And the Republican Party has been criticized nonstop by Democrats for being the party of white men. And anytime you oppose the policy of President Barack Obama it must have been because you're a racist.

And now the women in the minority that are going to be running for president are going to be turning that around on their fellow Democrats. It will be interesting for me to see how Bernie, how Biden, how O'Rourke answer that white male charge which is like almost worse than being a criminal in the Democrat Party right now.

HARF: I think what's interesting -- what frustrates me about fellow Democrats is they're looking for a savior right now.

JONES: Yeah.

HARF: But they're looking -- and that's why they look at Beto because they just want someone who's the perfect candidate and a perfect package.

JONES: But they had one in Barack Obama.

HARF: Exactly. And he won twice, overwhelmingly, in one state like Indiana, right? The Democrats need to compete in. But I keep telling my fellow Democrats we don't need a savior. The primary process sometimes works itself out. It sometimes puts forward a candidate that can win in a general. The Republican primary was insane. It put forth a candidate that could win a general election, same with Barack Obama in 2008. Sometimes these processes actually work --


PERINO: I do have a question for you, Marie, tell me just about, like, logistically how you think things will change when California moves earlier for their primary because there are so many delegates then? Does that change a lot?

HARF: That will change it. Also the fact that super delegates, these parties elders who are given a lot of power in previous Democratic primary nominating processes, they helped anoint Hillary Clinton, for example, they have much less power now. So the power has been pushed down to the grassroots activists.

Democrats in Iowa are different than Democrats in New Hampshire and South Carolina. Nevada now no longer a caucus, now a primary. These things seem very wonky, but they actually matter when there's going to be a very hotly contested primary. That's why you're going to see candidates go to Iowa, go to New Hampshire. You already are. This primary is starting like now.


ORTAGUS: The generational struggle in the Democrat Party is sort of a fascinating one as well because the Dem -- in a presidential election, they rely so much on those younger voters that didn't show out for Hillary Clinton, especially younger women.

And the generational struggle just isn't about their 2020 nominee. It's look at the angst that was geared towards Pelosi and to Schumer, people who are in their 70's and have been in leadership for a long time. And I think you're sort of seeing the base of the Democrat Party, especially the young people say, you know, it's our turn to lead. It's our time for leadership.

JONES: Well, one part of the Democrats -- problem they're going to have is that authentic leadership because there's a lot of candidates that weren't as far left when they were in other offices, when it came to Beto --

ORTAGUS: Kirsten Gillibrand.

JONES: He voted for legislation to essentially dismantle Obamacare. He's been --

HARF: That's why Bernie has been attacking him.

JONES: Exactly. Because a lot -- and Kamala Harris, she's all of a sudden for criminal justice reform, she didn't govern that way when she was attorney general of California. And so, as it's get heated -- and let's be clear, Biden is an experienced politician. He is not going to play fair with them. He's got to go after every single thing that they did --

HARF: I'm ready.

JONES: -- and that's when you're going to see that experienced leader. That why I've said, right now, when it comes to the Democrats, he's the only candidate that has a shot in the running because he has been that consistent leader.

PERINO: Well, what do you think about that, Tom?

HARF: What's your poll numbers, Tom, from this time in 2015, or '11, or '07, we would be talking about a whole different group of people.

SHILLUE: Yeah. And all the numbers have to do with Trump, that's the whole thing. Even 70 percent don't want her to run, they're mad at her because she lost to Trump. Like, that's why her numbers are so low.

PERINO: Like, don't show your face around here again.

SHILLUE: Yes. And I think they will forgive -- policy, none of it matters anymore. They will forgive Beto --

JONES: I don't think so.

SHILLUE: If they think he has the -- I don't think they're right --

PERINO: Even the Bernie Sanders' people are not like solid Bernie people right now, right? They're sort of saying you're going to have to court us a little bit.

HARF: Well -- and to Morgan's point it's a good one. There will be a debate in the party about people saying, look, we just need to win. And someone like Joe Biden or Beto, they can win versus this, but we need to win with a fill in the blank, woman, minority, progressive, whatever that blank is, and you're going to have Democrats who say job number one is to win. And we need to figure out how to do that and take care of the rest later --

ORTAGUS: You know what's interesting --

HARF: -- quite frankly.

ORTAGUS: -- in the poll that we're all looking at earlier, actually, 41 percent of Democrats thought that Bernie should not run again. And so, for me, when you see Bernie --

HARF: Amen.

ORTAGUS: -- you see Hillary, I'm sort of -- well, first of all, he's not even a Democrat. It's sort of weird.

HARF: He's not a Democrat.


ORTAGUS: But, you know, for me, instead of trying to Tonya Harding, you know, Beto already in the process --

HARF: Good reference.

ORTAGUS: Thank you. I Googled that. I remember her name earlier today. But why isn't Bernie sort of saying, you know, I set forth this more liberal agenda for the party, and I'm going to help bring up people like AOC, and Beto, and others, and bring up the next generation. But because it's not really about that, it's about he's selfish. It's about power. More than it's about ideology. They're all so power hungry Ÿ_"

JONES: But they have --

ORTAGUS: -- it can't even lead a movement and step aside and let someone else --

JONES: I disagree in a way because that new movement -- that is where the energy is --

PERINO: Part of it, yeah.

HARF: Not all of it, part of it.

JONES: So, there was a time -- even people on the right, and I've said this yesterday on The Five, that we will laugh at Ocasio-Cortez, but they're winning. And it's not just her that's winning, there are incremental changes that they want to make. And I think that the Democrats have to take them -- they are the freedom caucus of the left.

HARF: But they're only winning in certain places. And the way we took back the majority in the House is by winning moderate seats in Kansas City, and Savannah, and Detroit, and Denver. All of these places -- we took back the House with moderates. A lot of the attention goes to progressives, and that's the fight you're going to have --


PERINO: We've got to run, guys. Do you have any last thoughts, Tom?


PERINO: Biden, 2020? SHILLUE: I agree it's going to be fun. We'll see what happens.

PERINO: All right, we will see. That's my favorite show (ph). President Trump going after Democrats as the partial government shutdown hits day six. See it next.


HARF: President Trump trying to pin blame on Democrats as the partial government shutdown enters day six, the president accusing Democrats of obstruction and hypocrisy when it comes to the border wall.


PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: We're going to have a wall. We're going to have safety. We need safety for our country even from this standpoint.

We need a wall. So when you say how long is it going to take? When are they going to say that we need border security? When are the Democrats going to say? Don't forget, the Democrats all agreed that you need a wall until I wanted it. Once I wanted it, they didn't agree.


HARF: With negotiations reportedly at a standstill, House Republicans are saying members shouldn't expect any new vote this week. OK. Dana, I want to start with some of the human impact of this because we now know hundreds of thousands of federal workers having to work without getting paid, you and I both been federal government employees as has Morgan, there are real people who are impacted by this.

PERINO: Right. So -- however, I do think that this could go on for a very long time. Mark Meadows, a congressman for North Carolina, head of the freedom caucus, was on -- with CNN, and Dana Bash, earlier, and saying that he talked President Trump, and this could go on for a long time. And, in fact, I have a theory.


PERINO: I think it could go on until the State of the Union.

HARF: Why?

PERINO: That usually happens towards the end of the month. Remember yesterday in Iraq when President Trump made a secret trip over there that we're going to talk about later on the show. One of the things he said in the Q&A with a reporter is that he plans to go see the border. And that he was going to go see the border and take the press with him, and he said I think I'm going to go right before the State of the Union.

And I think that it could go on that long because the president is going to dig in his heels. And I'm not saying -- I don't know anything. This is purely my thought process. But I'm just thinking if it goes to next week, right, and Nancy Pelosi then, presumably, she becomes the Speaker of the House, then you're at January 6th, OK? So then January 27th, 28th, whenever the State of the Union is, I could see it lasting that long.

HARF: So, Lawrence --

JONES: I think it's longer than that.

PERINO: Really?

JONES: Yeah. We have no choice.

HARF: Let me ask you a practical question, Nancy Pelosi when she takes over and the House Democrats are in charge, they will have the votes to pass a clean funding bill. It very well may pass the Senate as well, even despite Republicans picking up more votes. If President Trump vetoes that, is that a good idea? Do you think that's what he will do? That seems like a bigger political gamble.

JONES: He doesn't have any choice. If he doesn't deliver --

HARF: Why?

JONES: -- on this piece of his promises from the last campaign, he doesn't win 2020, period. That the only reason why -- the president was prepared to cave last week. There was multiple reports of it. He was bringing everybody in. And the moment everyone started attacking him and his base, it was the first time I ever seen the president fearful because all there is loyal supporters.

And so, the president realizes this is the gamble right now. Either this is the last time he can get it passed, and so he has to hold a firm stance on this or he won't get reelected.

PERINO: I disagree, but I'll let everybody talk and then I'll take it on. HARF: Well, Tom, his poll numbers have already started to go down a little bit. And the promise, to be fair, during the campaign was that not the taxpayers would pay for it, but Mexico would pay for it. What's your take on this?

SHILLUE: Mexico -- you know, Democrats saying, well, we'll wait for Mexico to pay for it. That's a loser argument.

HARF: But he said it. He did say it.

JONES: He did say it.

SHILLUE: What? It doesn't matter. The base didn't believe it anyway. They knew he was going to get the money other ways.

JONES: Sure, it's true.

SHILLUE: Listen, when I do my talk radio, you know, the callers come in, they all say, look, we knew he was going to find other ways for Mexico to pay for it. We knew he had the NAFTA thing. They want construction to start on the wall. He's right. What he just said, that clip we played, he said Democrats already voted for this. They said they wanted -- they want a border barrier, right?

Remember, it was in 2006, Democrats did vote. Obama did vote. The Schumer, I believe, voted for the fencing. That's why the president is changing, he's saying, look, I'll take if they want to call it fencing, if they want to call it steel slats --

JONES: He just wants it.

SHILLUE: Yes. And he's right, that clip he showed that's perfect logic. They voted for it until Trump wanted it, and then they didn't. That's very true.

ORTAGUS: Here's what's going to happen, January 3rd, Nancy Pelosi will take over as Speaker of the House. The House will pass a clean C.R. bill, right? And that's without the wall funding they will submit to the Senate. That will not past the 60 vote threshold --

PERINO: You don't think so?

ORTAGUS: No. But here is what I will think will happen, is that you will start to see moderate senators, especially in states like Maine, people that have a re-election that might be a Republican Senate in a state where the president isn't popular, they might be able to start to pick them off. I don't think they'll be able to pick them off to get to 60.

So, if I'm the president or his team and I'm looking at this from a strategic perspective, it feels like we're on defense. And what we need to do is get back on to offense. How do we do that? We need to put things on the table that the Democrats can't turn down. Just saying I'm going to keep the government closed until you give me the wall funding is not going to win --


ORTAGUS: Like DACA. Like TPS renewal. Like the BRIDGE Act.

HARF: Yeah.

ORTAGUS: There's a number --

JONES: He was tweeting about DACA.

ORTAGUS: -- immigration related, but there's a number of things that we could put on the table that would start to break apart there -- right now their coalition is united. I worry the longer this drags on that we start to get moderate senators defecting, going to the Democrat side, so that's why we need to go on offense.

JONES: I disagree with that because -- I mean, from a practical standpoint, I get it -- ORTAGUS: What are you going to get the House to pass?

JONES: To try to -- you know, get some type of compromise. But there's two separate issues when it comes to securing the border, and then the citizens that are non-citizens that came here no fault of their own, being here illegally. And so --

ORTAGUS: I agree. You're arguing policy, I'm arguing tactics.


JONES: All I'm saying, they tried it before and it didn't get done. The president offered how many people, 1.8?


JONES: And they still turned it down. So, they've tried that tactic before. They didn't get it passed. So, it's going to go either the wall or nothing. And the president is going to take that hard line.

HARF: Dana?

PERINO: OK. So, two things, so one on the communications standpoint. So the president and the Democrats are in impasse, so how do you break an impasse? He is the one that holds the bully pulpit, so he's the one can do something different. And I think he needs to show, not tell, or show not tweet.

So, I would let other people do the talking for me. So he has great people at the customs and border patrol who are civil servants, take them down with the press and let them show them their situation, show them how it would be more effective if they had border fencing, wall, whatever you want to call it, in these areas. How it would actually save money in the long run because you wouldn't need four people in one area, you just need one person in an area when you have that thing. So, showing not telling I think would be really important.

But I also feel like the president has a lot to point to aside from this $5 billion for the wall funding that he has done on immigration that he could take to the base and say, do you want to know what I've done? Here's all these things, asylum claims. Basically getting Mexico to hold asylum seekers rather than being held in the United States, that's such a big deal --

HARF: It is a big deal, yeah.

PERINO: And he's not getting enough credit for that. And Kirstjen Nielsen organized that Mexicans are basically saying, OK, we'll swallow that, we have to do it. We've already had that same agreement with Canada. He's done more on workplace enforcement. He's done more to get troops to the border. He's shown he's willing to do that.

The visa overstay, which is the really big issue, nobody is talking about that, and he could do that. So, I feel like there are things that he could do that he could talk, then say, like, in addition to all these other things that we want to do with border security, I've done all of these things as well. He's willing to fight all the way up to the Supreme Court for it. He's got a story to tell. I think he gets himself too boxed in just talking about the wall.

HARF: Right. But it plays with the base line, he's right (ph) about that. We will keep monitoring to see how long the shutdown continues. In the meantime, just how addicted are Americans to their phones? We all have them out on the table here. Now there's a new way to kick that habit, those details up next.


ORTAGUS: Some people are so addicted to technology and their devices they're now turning to rehab much like programs helping with drug and alcohol problems, tech addicts are now turning to secluded detox facilities that include 12-step programs and intense therapy. They're also agreeing to use their smart phones with limits and monitoring systems.

And so, Tom, one of the things that I thought was interesting and when we were reading about this and how people were addicted to their smart phones is that graying Gen X-ers are the ones who are the most addictive to their phones. So as a graying Gen X-ers --


PERINO: So, grain? What's it? Graying?

ORTAGUS: Graying. Like gray hair.

PERINO: Graying. Oh, how rude. SHILLUE: Grain Gen X-ers, yes. Well, look --


SHILLUE: It is true, we got a little obsessed. And when, you know, I was a real tech advocate in the 90s, and I loved when the iPhones came out, and I did get obsessed with it, and I think we suffered from it. I think, because -- I don't know, it really took over our lives in a way that with younger people it's just -- it hasn't taken over their lives as much.

ORTAGUS: You see, I was surprised that Gen X-ers used the phone more than millennials.


PERINO: I think it's clear why. We have to do -- our work is there, that we're in the prime of our working lives. We want to keep in touch with our parents as they get older. And for those of us that have children, you want to keep in touch with your children. So, it's like, if you're working -- if you're trying to find a work-life balance like the most effective tool is your phone.

SHILLUE: Yes, you're right. We have more -- we need to talk to more people. You're so right.

JONES: That's a good excuse. This is what it is, you guys aren't used to it. You guys aren't used to it so you all got a little taste of it and you can't put it down. My generation grew up with it, and so it's nothing to us.

PERINO: It's not fancy.

JONES: We don't even use it that much because it's like -- it's always a new toy. So we just put it down and move on to the next thing. Whereas, you guys -- you guys get loyal to it -- yes, it is. It's just like a phone, we grew up with computers and all that stuff.


ORTAGUS: The millennial end of the table is irritating --

HARF: I do think there's an addictive quality to it. And I like how the new iPhone -- you can monitor your screen time.

PERINO: That's true.

HARF: And I like the fact that people are now doing phone-free holidays and dinners. I really -- I like that because you can get -- and it has not just mental but physical. And my doctor told me the more you look down at your phone your hands and your wrist and your neck and everything like, it changes --

PERINO: It creates a wrinkle.


PERINO: Yeah. That happens if the wrinkle thing is a problem.


ORTAGUS: I got the wrist thing on election night for the rest of that week.


HARF: And it also encourages -- I mean, the mental aspect of it --

ORTAGUS: Wrinkles thumb.

HARF: -- fear of missing out, like you've always -- people lives look so air brushed and perfect on-line. And there're all these studies about how kids or adults who see people's lives they get depressed because they don't think their life is as good.

ORTAGUS: I've never had that problem.

HARF: I don't know how to answer that.


ORTAGUS: I don't get jealous. I'm happy for their success.

HARF: But there are studies, especially, teenagers, you know, there are down sides to it. And I think having some balance --

SHILLUE: Huge downside.

HARF: -- is very good.

SHILLUE: I mean, need to go further. It's not just balance. I mean, people need to put their phones away. I wake up -- I used to wake and go to the phone and read the news because I said I work in the news business. I need to keep up with the headlines.

Now, I don't. I keep the phone away. I make my coffee, I sit there, I read text. My life is better. It's like -- it's insane. But you don't need -- you can do it by yourself. You don't need rehab. It's just somebody trying to get you to pay for their -- it's a paid vacation because then they can submit it, and so it's a medical issue.

ORTAGUS: So there's something called selfie wrist, and Fox News is reporting on this. This is intense Fox News reporting this Christmas week. But selfie wrist is like, I guess, when you take your phone and take a selfie, you're holding it for too long, you can get pain in your wrist. I love selfies. Do you have a selfie wrist issues?

JONES: No. I have long arms, so it's just like -- it's just a little click. But what concerns me about all this tech nonsense is that because people can have personal responsibility they want the government to come in and regulate these tech companies --

ORTAGUS: All right, libertarian.

JONES: -- and the technology. Just because you can't have self-control doesn't mean that the government needs to come and be your daddy.

ORTAGUS: I agree.

JONES: If you don't like the way that Facebook is selling your private information, if you don't like you're addicted, they've built these platforms to be addictive. Guess what? They built fast food to be addictive so you can go to McDonald's and all these others. You should be responsible (ph) -- delete the app. Instead, they're too lazy and they want Congress to investigate these people and say, yeah, yeah, yeah, it's addictive and they're selling this. You signed up for it.

PERINO: I agree.

HARF: But sometimes they don't tell you what they're selling. There's difference between like their -- your info --

JONES: Terms of service.

HARF: No, but -- Facebook has not always been honest.

JONES: Delete it --


HARF: They have a story on the BBC about eye yoga that people are going to because their eyes have become so pained and damaged because it's staring at screens.

PERINO: Really?

HARF: And they -- I don't know if it works.

SHILLUE: Eye yoga is the same people that are doing the dumb rehab. Just put the phone down, dummy. HARF: I actually agree with that.

ORTAGUS: I have fantastic selfie collection because I like meet -- when I meet world leaders, or really important people, or famous people, I like to ask them for selfies because --


HARF: You're that girl.

ORTAGUS: I think it's really funny. My husband is always like, yeah, if I asked them for a selfie they would be like go away. Please go away. But I have a good collection of it, so I don't have selfie wrist, I just have a bruise on my wrist --

HARF: You need a selfie stick.

JONES: I don't know if --

SHILLUE: I don't know if it's the selfies that are causing the strain. It's that they're texting too much.

ORTAGUS: No, it's called selfie wrist.



SHILLUE: Oh, it's Fox News? Then it may be right.

HARF: Well, now that we've settled that. I think holidays without -- particularly this holiday week. Holidays without the phone. You don't need to document every part of your Christmas.

JONES: My family did that. We decided that we're just going to enjoy each other.

HARF: And wasn't it better?

JONES: It was way better.

ORTAGUS: I get bored. All right.

HARF: Come on.

ORTAGUS: Everybody take a selfie in the commercial break.

Some media criticism over President Trump's surprise visit to troops in Iraq reaches epic levels. You won't believe what they are saying now, or maybe you will.


JONES: Before President Trump's surprise trip to Iraq, the media constantly attacked him for not visiting the troops. So you'd think they'd be happy to see President Trump in a combat zone, right? But they weren't. Not so fast. Check out the latest case of the media's whiplash.


JIM ACOSTA, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: We saw the president signing a campaign hat, a red hat, his Make America Great Again hat.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The president seems to have confused, in some way, this troop deploy -- this troop visit with a campaign rally.

REAR ADMIRAL JOHN KIRBY, CNN MILITARY AND DIPLOMATIC ANALYST: Every time he's around military audiences, he tends to politicize it.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: When we turned on CNN and we saw the president politicizing a Christmas message, it was like he kept saying -- he's like the Grinch.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Trump, once again, used a captive audience of American heroes to push his unpopular domestic agenda. This time the wall.


JONES: The media is the Grinch. Morgan, there's two things that I don't like.


JONES: One, I don't like presidents that go overseas and apologize for our country. And I also don't like when presidents are overseas, and the media criticizes the president while he's trying to do things for our troops. What's your take?

ORTAGUS: Well, I spent a holiday in 2007, I was in Baghdad. I wasn't on military deployment. I was on civilian mobilization at that time with USAID. And it's tough when you are overseas when you're spending Thanksgiving and Christmas. And I think any time you're there and a president, any president of any party, comes over, you are so excited, because you're working. You're in the trenches. You're away from your family. You're away from your friends. So I think it's great that the president went.

And I just want to say, you know, for the people that don't understand the military's excitement, many of the members, to see the president, they feel that way for this president. They feel that way for any president coming over. Because they serve, we all serve at the pleasure of the commander in chief.

So, I don't really understand this collective freak-out about people being excited to see the president. They should be. Let's give him a break.

HARF: Well, but to be fair, some of that criticism is overblown. But there are legitimate criticisms of some of the things President Trump said.

He lied to them and told them they hadn't gotten a pay raise until he gave them one. That's not true. He told them it was 10 percent. That's not true.

He also waded into some domestic political issues like the wall, which to many people seems a little bit inappropriate. So I think it's very good that he went. And I think some media criticism is too far. But it is OK - -

JONES: But they loved it, Marie. Did you see those military men and women there?

HARF: That's fine.

JONES: They were excited.


JONES: Had MAGA hats, T-shirts, flags.

HARF: But it's also fair to point out that the president told them things that were not accurate about their pay raises. That is not unfair media criticism.

JONES: I think that's totally --

HARF: That is fact-checking a president.

JONES: I totally agree with you, Marie. But the bulk of the criticism was the formality of what the president did. That they didn't believe that they should have had the hats. Those military men and women looked like they were having a good time, Dana.

PERINO: Absolutely. And they should. And they deserve to have one. I just feel like -- one, about the wall, the president sees that as national security.

JONES: That's right.

PERINO: So he doesn't see that as a domestic issue.

HARF: But he attacked Democrats.

PERINO: Well, that's something --

SHILLUE: In other words, he behaved exactly as he always does. No change.

HARF: But that doesn't make it OK. It doesn't make it right.

SHILLUE: When are people going to stop being surprised, though? I mean, to me, it's "Look at the way he behaved in an unprecedented fashion." But I mean, that's the way he always behaves. Yes.

PERINO: And a trip like that is -- it's hard to plan. It was an important one to do.

And also, if you are somebody who was concerned about the president's seemingly abrupt decision just to say, "OK, we're pulling out of Syria," well, the other thing you got yesterday is to find out he has no plans to take troops out of Iraq, and he thinks that we can stage attacks from Iraq if we need to. So, that would -- that should be a good things.

JONES: You know, that's amazing.

PERINO: If you don't like the way he delivered it, that's OK.

JONES: I want to hone into that, because there was some news in the president when he was talking about what actually happened and how he got to this decision. He talked about that he had told the generals --

ORTAGUS: Are you talking about Syria?

JONES: Right.


JONES: He talked to the generals, and he said, "Hey, you've got six months to come do this."

They came back to the president and said, "We need more time." Then they came to him a second time, "Need more time." And that third time he decided that "No, guys. We've set a deadline."

Do you think the president set this deadline because of the campaign promise, and he should have listened to the generals a little bit more? Or do you think the president is right on this?

ORTAGUS: Well, I think what we're going through right now is a transition in our national security. And so the president's team, his first year in office laid out something called the national security strategy. And that is how does the president see the world? Marie has probably been a part of drafting these in the Obama administration.

And in that national security strategy, the president shifted us to great power conflict with Russia, with China, a focus on that. So the president is trying to shift us from a Middle East-focused strategy. Admittedly, the Obama administration also wanted to focus us towards Asia.

And so what happens is when you're shifting, that means military equipment is different. That means fighting is different. So we're in the middle of the transition of the forces, and that is sometimes rocky.

HARF: But do you agree -- do you agree. I can't -- I mean, you're so focused on countries like Iran and their power in the region. We've talked about this.


HARF: Do you agree with just abruptly pulling out and letting Iran fill that vacuum?

ORTAGUS: I do not. But I also think that what has been communicated over the last week seems that the president is -- is starting to slow down that decision. That it's not happening overnight.

I think the president's team put out a fantastic strategy to counter Iran. You can't counter Iran if you're not in the region. It's impossible. And so perhaps, you know, you're saying, "I don't understand to counter Iran anymore," or "I want to focus on ISIS." It's done. Moving on.

I think the American people just need to understand what the strategy is, because we have a greater strategy. If we're going to actually counter them, we have to be in the region. That doesn't necessarily mean in Syria. But listen, I could nerd out and spend another hour with Marie going over this stuff. She's got a lot of experience here, too.

JONES: Tom, as Dana corrected noted, the president said that that's why he's leaving people in Iraq as well, too. So they could rush there if there is any type of conflict where he feels like any type of terrorist organization is gaining more ground. But do you think that's the correct strategy?

SHILLUE: Well, I mean, it may be. That's what I have been saying on the radio all week. That I don't know if I -- if I would agree with Trump's strategy or Mad Dog Mattis's strategy. But I don't think it's unprecedented.

You know, president -- the president has an opinion that we should pull our troops out of Syria. You're right. They're going to be still in the region. We're still going to be there.

I think that the press overreacts to everything the president does, and they did to this visit. I mean, the signing of the MAGA hats. Somebody came on, and the analysis was it's a violation of the Hatch Act. I mean, he's signing a MAGA hat. We know the guys like the hats. They want him to sign the hat.

He used the word -- what was the word he used? "Suckers." America is no longer suckers. People overreacted to that. "Oh, how dare you call our troops suckers?" He wasn't calling the troops suckers. He was saying America -- it's a part of his "America first" philosophy. And he was saying we don't need our troops fighting at a disadvantage.

So I think it's always -- it's always the overreaction. I don't think you do it, Marie Harf.

HARF: Thank you. I try not to. Because I do think people do. I think a lot of people, every little thing they blow out of proportion.

I do think there were legitimate things to criticize on this visit. And his language matters. Right? His language has consequences.

SHILLUE: Did the suckers bother you?

HARF: It's not the worst thing I've ever heard him say, but I didn't like it.

JONES: But what put us in danger, that --

HARF: I don't -- I don't like when he's asked, "Were you nervous about coming to a war zone," and he made it all about how nervous he was about the danger, right?

JONES: But wasn't that real, though? I mean, the president had never been there before. The shades are down.

HARF: Which is a -- which is a problem.

JONES: This is the first time there.

ORTAGUS: And he had his wife. And he had his wife.

HARF: Which is a problem that he hasn't been there before.


HARF: And I think the fact that he was dishonest --

PERINO: Why is it a problem?

HARF: I think the fact that he was dishonest with the troops about pay raises, I really don't like that. For some reason, that just -- it's a fact. He said it wrong.

JONES: But why does it bother you that he talked about him being afraid going into a war zone? I mean, that's real.

HARF: He should talk about their sacrifice and not his.

JONES: Look, I think he knows --

HARF: If I were his communications advisor, that's what I would advise him. I'm not.

JONES: I think a lot of people -- a lot of people are more concerned --

HARF: I'm not making a civil case out of it.

JONES: -- about what the military feels about it. But when I watch those military men and women being so excited, I think we should just leave it up to them.

HARF: And some military folks have been on TV in the past few days criticizing it. There's members of the military on all political sides of the aisle here. So --

PERINO: That's true.

JONES: That's fair.

HARF: -- we should just --

JONES: We've got to go.

HARF: -- remember that.

JONES: Up next, we're putting our trivia knowledge to the test when FOX Nation's "The Quiz Show" comes back, all on "The Five." Oh, yes.


SHILLUE: I hope my fellow "Fivers" are ready to test their knowledge of fun facts, like I do every weekday at 7 p.m. on "The Quiz Show," only on FOX Nation.

All right. Let's get started. Do you have your --

PERINO: Got it.

SHILLUE: -- your A, B -- your A's, your B's and your C's, right?

PERINO: Ready.

SHILLUE: Here we go. Question No. 1: "What did Jeff Bezos originally want to name Amazon?" Was it: A, Netmart; B, Homespun; or C, Cadabra?

HARF: Can you say them again?

ORTAGUS: We can't --

SHILLUE: Hold it towards me, Lawrence.

PERINO: I'm going to guess this.

SHILLUE: Amazon originally, Netmart, Homespun or Cadabra? And you've got your answers. The answer is Cadabra, "C."

HARF: Woo!

SHILLUE: Marie Harf with a "C." Cadabra, that's right. Netmart sounds like it could be an Amazon rival, right? Homespun seems like a nice, warm, fuzzy name. But it was Cadabra, as in abracadabra. They originally wanted to name it.

PERINO: Well, I'm glad he went with Amazon.

ORTAGUS: Yes, sounds like --

PERINO: I would not want to be a Cadabra prime member.

SHILLUE: Question No. 2, "What type of animal babies are called kits? The males are called hobs, and the females are called jills? Is this guinea pigs, ferrets or hedgehogs?

ORTAGUS: Wait, I had this one before. What type of --

SHILLUE: Guinea pigs, ferrets or hedgehogs. The babies are called kits.

Oh, we've got the answers up here, and the answer is "B" --


SHILLUE: -- ferrets.

PERINO: I had this when I was on "The Quiz Show." I had this one.

SHILLUE: Are you -- you had that for an answer?

PERINO: I had that question. And I knew it because of Greg Gutfeld and Captain Sparkles, and we had the whole conversation.

SHILLUE: You almost forgot the -- I didn't even know that this was your question.

PERINO: Shouldn't get the point.

SHILLUE: Are you keeping your own scores, guys?



SHILLUE: Are our producers keeping score? I can't do everything at once. Keep yourselves' score. We'll keep going.

JONES: Basketball or football.

SHILLUE: Question No. 3, "Which of the following is a traditional part of the Christmas celebration in Scandinavia?" A, the yodeling yeti; B, the Yule goat. Listen, don't just look, Lawrence. Or C, the malevolent monkey. Traditional part of the Christmas celebration in Scandinavia.

All the answers are up. The answer is the yule goat.

PERINO: Oh my God. I got it right?

SHILLUE: The Yule goat.

ORTAGUS: Wait, what was that? I forgot what I --

HARF: "B," that was "B." You're wrong.


SHILLUE: Marie is leading with two; is that right?

ORTAGUS: No, she --

SHILLUE: Dana, you're leading with two.

PERINO: Of course I am.

ORTAGUS: Oh! Excuse me.

HARF: Hey, hey!

SHILLUE: OK, yes. The Yule goat is kind of a big deal in Scandinavia. As part of their annual Christmas celebrations, many towns erect a large straw goat adorned with red ribbons. OK.

Here we go. Question No. 4: "When Rice Crispies first hit the shelves, there was a fourth member of the Snap, Crackle and Pop gang named what?" A, Pow; B, Slurp; or C, Chomp?

ORTAGUS: Snap, Pop --

SHILLUE: The answers are up.

HARF: Everyone guess "C" except for me.

SHILLUE: The fourth member was Pow! Marie.

HARF: That's me, right? Woo!

PERINO: Wow, now we're tied.

ORTAGUS: I'm so bad at this.

SHILLUE: Now Marie and Dana are tied.

JONES: Not my game.

SHILLUE: The fourth member of Snap, Crackle and Pop was Pow. He was a little elf, and he didn't speak. He just pointed to things.

ORTAGUS: Great. I'm terrible at this.

SHILLUE: OK. No. 5, "A pack of kittens is called a kindle. What is a pack of cats called?"

HARF: Oh, I know this.

SHILLUE: OK, is it a congress?

HARF: No, don't look at what I get.

SHILLUE: A bask? Or a clowder? A pack of cats is called A, a congress; B, a bask; or C, a clowder.

Your answers are up. The answer is a clowder, C. Marie and Dana are running away with it.

PERINO: Marie says she knows it.

HARF: I know.

PERINO: And then you have to -- you have to trust.

HARF: Terrible poker face.

PERINO: Honestly, it's not cheating.

SHILLUE: Are you cheating off each other?

HARF: I have a terrible poker face. I really do. Very -- aggressively.

SHILLUE: A pack of crocodiles is a bask. This is for future "Quiz Shows." A pack of baboons is a congress.

JONES: Really?

SHILLUE: But yes, cats, a bunch of cats is a clowder.

Here we go.

JONES: A congress?

SHILLUE: Question No. 6, "In 1968 Hans-Gunnar Liljenwall became the first Olympic athlete to fail drug test. What substance did Hans test positive? For what substance did he test positive?" Was it A, THC; B, elk testosterone; or C, beer?

JONES: Always going after weed.

SHILLUE: All your answers are up. The answer is C, beer. Nobody got it right.

PERINO: Beer? That was a banned substance, beer?


SHILLUE: Hans was an athlete whose whole team had to return their bronze medal, because he had a couple of beers before the competition to calm his nerves.


JONES: Wow, poor guy.

SHILLUE: So tie breaker now. Who's tied?

HARF: Dana and I are tied, I think.

SHILLUE: Marie and Dana are tied here.

ORTAGUS: But I think Dana cheated.

SHILLUE: We're not going to go to question eight. We'll go right to -- OK.

Tie breaker, "How many days did the longest government shutdown last? How many days?" Write it down on your pad. Closest without going over wins. Why is it without going over? I'm doing -- I'm doing "Price is Right" rules.

The closest answer wins. How many days? Twenty-five? Twenty-two, the answer is 21. Dana.

HARF: No, she went over. We both went over.

SHILLUE: I changed the rules. It's who's closest.

HARF: What?

PERINO: I think that I was a part of this government shutdown. That's how old I am.

SHILLUE: That's -- you were one day off.

Dana takes the cake. I don't know if she deserves it, because she knew one of the questions, because she got it on "Quiz Show." But you know what? You deserve it, because you played "Quiz Show."

PERINO: No, because I have a strategy. No, look, you can't -- if you're strategic, and you know your answer; and you figure out a way to get them, that's not cheating.

SHILLUE: Lawrence and Marie, you're going to do "Quiz Show."

We've got to go. "One More Thing" is next.


PERINO: It's time now for "One More Thing." I'm going to go first.

While most people dread holiday travel, check out this dad. He did, like, one of the sweetest things. He found out that his flight-attendant daughter had to work on Christmas, and his name is Hal Vaughn. And he decided that to celebrate with her, he took every flight with her, the entire day.


PERINO: The moment was originally shared by fellow passenger, you can see there, Mike Levy, who sat next to Hal on the way to Detroit. Hal's daughter Pierce posted on Facebook, thanking her crew and all the patient and wonderful gate agents around the country for helping her father and making sure he made every flight.

I mean, that is a great dad right there, Hal.

JONES: He's --

PERINO: He's a great guy.

Wow, I am short. Tom, go for it.

SHILLUE: All right. A dad named Duane Johnson in Virginia was giving his son a driving lesson. I think he pressed the wrong pedal. Watch.




SHILLUE: Hit the break.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, my gosh, Dad. Oh, my gosh. I swear! I'm sorry Dad.


JONES: He's crying.

SHILLUE: He's really sorry. Look at it. There we go.

PERINO: Oh, my gosh. Tom, what would -- You wrote a book about how your dad would've handled that.

SHILLUE: Yes. My dad, he wouldn't have handled it well. I don't think he would've let me in the driveway.

PERINO: That's pretty bad. I feel bad for him. He won't do that again, right, Marie?

HARF: So for all of us who have been sitting on the couch for the holidays, this should make us feel a little guilty. An American explorer from Oregon became the first person to complete a solo trek across Antarctica on Wednesday.

Take a look at these photos we have up. Thirty-three-year-old Colin O'Brady took nearly three months to complete the 921-mile journey. Fifty- four days trekking alone.

He was competing with another man, Louis Rudd. But O'Brady finished first in a final 32-hour, 77-mile push. The journey has been attempted before, but O'Brady is the first successful adventurer to finish the journey. This just looks grueling.

SHILLUE: It's amazing.

JONES: He has guts.

PERINO: I love that the United States did it.

ORTAGUS: I feel very patriotic.

PERINO: All right, Lawrence.

JONES: All right. So a lot of you guys have been asking about my whole weight loss experience. I lost 53 pounds in 11 weeks. And I want you guys to be a part of it.

First let me show you guys some pictures of my before and after. Yes, I used to be the nutty professor almost.

ORTAGUS: Oh, no.

JONES: And then I just woke up one day, and I wanted to change. And so you can see me now.

So this is what I want to do. I'm going to do a challenge. This is a 30- day challenge, after New Year's. After you celebrate, have all the drinks that you want, we're going to do a challenge from the second, January the 2nd, all the way until January the 31st. And you can use the hashtag #LBJ30DayChallenge on Instagram. I'm going to be posting recipes that I use. You can't have any alcohol, no fast food, no bread.

ORTAGUS: I'm out.


JONES: Yes, no red meat.

PERINO: What can you have?

JONES: And I guarantee you're going to feel so much better.

HARF: No red meat!

JONES: I'm going to teach you how to cook the food that I love to cook. It destresses me.

PERINO: This is really neat. I love it. Good for you.

JONES: I'm going to post on Instagram, too, so make sure you follow me on Instagram and Twitter.

PERINO: I love that.

SHILLUE: And if you want to put on a few. No, go ahead.

PERINO: Morgan, you're next.

ORTAGUS: OK. So because animals are great, I have to show you this. Take a look at this heartwarming video. And this is -- this is so cute. This is Christmas.

This is the moment that a family surprising their daughter with her favorite shelter dog that they secretly adopted for her.


ORTAGUS: I just love this, because I'm such a dog person. Hailey always wanted a dog. She started volunteering at the Humane Society. She fell in love with this cute little 2-year-old pound mix -- excuse me, hound mix named Rambo. That is her giving a big hug to Rambo. Her parents got wind of this, decided to adopt him for her. And the --

PERINO: That's really sweet!

ORTAGUS: I love it.

HARF: A great Christmas story.

ORTAGUS: That makes me want a third doggie.

PERINO: Tell me where we can see "The Quiz Show."

SHILLUE: "Quiz Show," every night on FOX Nation at 7 p.m.

PERINO: Does anyone have the record? Anyone really good?

SHILLUE: The -- some people have gotten five.

PERINO: That's pretty good.

SHILLUE: Most people only get a few.

PERINO: That's the one to beat.


PERINO: All right. So set your DVRs. Never miss an episode of "The Five." It's been great to have you. "Special Report" is up next.

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