This is a rush transcript from "The Ingraham Angle," November 12, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
LAURA INGRAHAM, HOST: All right, I'm Laura Ingraham and this is "The Ingraham Angle" from Washington tonight. There are a flurry of lawsuits in the Florida recount battle. Hannity talked about some of them, and in moments, a live report from outside the Broward County Election Center. We are also going to talk to experts there on the ground.
Also, in tonight's Angle, you do not want to miss this one, Michelle Obama's new memoir targets Trump, race, and her own marriage. Well, you will hear my take on what the book is really all about ahead of the heated debate we're going to have on that topic. French President Emmanuel Macron is the latest to hit Trump over the embrace of nationalism. An expert tells us why Trump is right and the French are oh so wrong.
But we start tonight on the ground in Florida where Republicans Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis still cling the razor thin leads. Here to give us the latest is Fox News correspondent Phil Keating outside the Broward County election's board, Phil.
PHIL KEATING, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Laura, some Florida counties have already totally completed the recounts, however, not in Broward County nor in Palm Beach County. Here in Broward County, the actual recounting of the votes has still has not even begun.
Looking live inside the Broward County Election's Departments tabulation center, workers are still running 3.5 million pages, sorting out the first pages from the ballots which have the actual recount races on them. Once that is done, Broward will then run 800,000 ballots through a dozen tabulation machines.
The Florida senate race between Republican Governor Rick Scott and incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson has Scott leading by just 12,000 votes out of 8 million cast. That's after round one. Six lawsuits in total have been filed by these two candidates, four by Scott, two by Nelson. A Broward judge denied Scott's motion today to add state cops inside the recount room and impound machines and ballots were not in use.
However, the judge did decide to add three more Broward sheriff's deputies just to make sure everything is secure and running properly. The governor's race not as close as the senate race with former Congressman Ron DeSantis leading Tallahassee Democratic mayor Andrew Gillum by 33,000 votes.
Both parties really want their man in the governor's mansion, seeing that as an edge in this toss-up state that is so close, so close we have three statewide recounts going on here. That's happening two years from now, the next presidential election. DeSantis is already acting as governor-elect, assembling a transition team and looking at the offices in Tallahassee.
Meanwhile, Democratic Gillum conceded on Tuesday night but then he took that back over the weekend once the numbers started closing the gap. And even though he says his odds of winning this recount are incredibly small, he says every vote still deserves to be counted. The recount deadline statewide, this is Florida statute, is Thursday 3:00 p.m. All 67 counties must have the recount numbers in or, according to law, those votes won't be counted.
Broward is confident they will make that. However, up and Palm Beach County where they have older machines which can only recount one race at a time, they do seriously worry that they cannot make the Thursday deadline, Laura.
INGRAHAM: Phil, thanks so much. And here now are two people with inside knowledge of how this wacky Florida election system work, specifically as they relate to Broward and once again Palm Beach County. Republican Lizbeth Benacquisto is rules chair for the Florida State Senate and Shari McCartney is an election lawyer in Broward.
Shari, let me start with you. What should the viewers at home need to understand? What do they need to understand tonight about these persistent problems all these years later in Broward County?
SHARI MCCARTNEY, ELECTION LAWYER: Well, hi, Laura. You know, I just left the supervisor of elections office and I can tell you that the tens of thousands of ballots are being run through machines through the night, we've yet to begin the recount process here.
INGRAHAM: Wait a second. Wait a second. So, it's supposed to be finished by Thursday and yet the mandated recount in Broward County has not yet begun? How is this the 21st century in the most technologically advanced country on the planet? How is this still possible?
MCCARTNEY: Well, you know, process and procedure are central to an election. In fact, it's everything and when that's lacking or procedure be lacking, this is what results. You know, I worked on the recount in 2000 and some things are different and frankly some things stay the same.
INGRAHAM: Well, what are the things that have changed that should give Floridians and frankly all Americans across the country watching this because so much always seems to hinge on Florida? What should give them faith in the system tonight?
MCCARTNEY: Well, first and foremost, we know longer have chads so we are not dealing with hanging chads or pregnant chads or any kind of manual vision where we have to hold it up with a magnifying glass. We're dealing with scantron's and bubbling.
And so we'll have under votes and we'll have over votes but there will be a lot less possibility for manipulation and problems like that. I have to tell you that I'm convinced that once this is done, the result that we had on Tuesday night will stand.
INGRAHAM: Alright, Shari, let's go to you. Palm Beach County -- Lizbeth, let's go to you, Palm Beach County, Susan Bucher who is the election supervisors there said the following about the Thursday 3:00 p.m. deadline. Again, this is Palm Beach County.
She said, "Our equipment is not designed to meet the deadline and we've been complaining to the state for almost 10 years and they never extended the deadline. We'll give it our best shot effort, but what we need to do is machine recount all of our ballots to find the over and under votes."
And then she said she didn't know whether she thought, you know, they would miss the deadline or not. Again, same question, we are asking about Palm Beach County. I mean, again, the money they've poured into the electoral process in Florida, yet we are still back at oh, the machines aren't good enough. I just -- I find this whole thing both sad and uproariously funny if it weren't so important.
LIZABETH BENACQUISTO: Well, thank you for having me, Laura, but the truth is it's unacceptable. And when the supervisor of elections of Palm Beach County raised her right hand, took an oath to follow the law, it wasn't when it was convenient. It wasn't when it was easy. It was every time. And we have every expectation that she will meet the deadline and perform as she has sworn her obligation to do.
INGRAHAM: Shari, let's go back to you because Brenda Snipes has spoken out and she said this after all the questions, which Jeb Bush tweeted today saying she should step aside in Broward County. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRENDA SNIPES, ELECTION SUPERVISOR, BROWARD COUNTY: The lawsuits as they ar written certainly cast aspersions on my character and we have rebuild character over a period of time and character is always on display. And I've worked here for about 15 years and I have to say, this is the first time that this office or I have been under such attacks. So, if we make mistakes, we own mistakes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: OK, Shari, this is the first time we have ever heard a complaint about Brenda Snipes, OK? And President Obama is going to run for senate as a conservative in some state, OK. It's like craziness!
MCCARTNEY: Well, yes, I was there today when she said that. And you know, I think she's sincere in what she says and she truly believes it, but the fact remains that it seems incredibly ad hoc. There don't seem to be formal process and procedure.
If there are, they certainly do not seem to be being followed. And when you have that, you are naturally going to have the chaos and the resulting, you know, confusion and basically a sense of crisis in our election system.
INGRAHAM: Yes. Well, conventional wisdom is that she's done, Snipes is done and Scott and DeSantis, presuming they hold onto their slim leads, that they are going to move quickly to replace her, is that accurate senator (ph)?
MCCARTNEY: I truly believe that governor-elect DeSantis will work with a legislator to make sure that we undertake all necessary and appropriate updates and changes to the electoral laws and make sure that we have a system in place that instills confidence in the residents of the state of Florida.
INGRAHAM: Yes, I mean, Floridians at this point, it's just about your pride, OK. We just got to get your pride back and just fix this. Republican, Democrat, it doesn't matter. Just fix this so this ridiculous situation does not occur for up and next election. We appreciate both of you being on tonight.
And just today, Governor Rick Scott coming under fire, two different fronts. First, a group of Florida voters and organizations filed a lawsuit alleging that Scott has illegally abused his power as governor to swing the outcome of his race. And second, his opponent, incumbent Democratic Senator Bill Nelson is calling for his recusal. Watch.
We don't have it so we are going to just keep going. So joining me now, constitutional law expert Professor John Eastman and Miguel de Grandy, a recount expert who worked on the successful Bush 2000 team down in Florida.
John, the state judge, Jeff Tutor, admonished Governor Scott today for suggesting voter fraud occurred in this race saying, "Everything the lawyers are out there saying out there in front of the elections office is being beamed all over the country. We need to be careful of what we say. Words mean things these days." So John, are Republicans exaggerating this?
JOHN EASTMAN, LAW PROFESSOR, CHAPMAN UNIVERSITY: I don't think they are exaggerating and I am one of the lawyers suing Brenda Snipes right now. What we found is that they do not clear there voter rolls for illegal citizens. They don't clean them for felons. They don't clean them for people who die out of state. They do check for people who die in state, but guess what? A lot of Floridians had two residences.
And you know, it's just unconscionable that they are not cleaning those rolls. The reason that is so significant is that it creates an opportunity for fraud. And when they've uncovered 80,000 ballots after election night, you know, because they wanted to narrow the race, you know, you just got to raise some real serious red flags.
INGRAHAM: When people think 80,000 ballots and they think this is the United States of America -- if Jimmy Carter had gone to some foreign country and you had heard about these types of things happening, Jimmy Carter would be giving a speech about how this is like a bloodless coup going on in a particular country's important political race.
EASTMAN: That's right. I think the Ugandan delegation is going to come watch our Florida elections on the next one.
INGRAHAM: Maybe they should be the observer. Miguel, is John overstating this because to listen to some of the other types on other networks, this is just outrageous that there is anyone out there alleging voter fraud. This is just a process, Miguel, and the process says to go on, and maybe it takes a little while. But "every vote must be counted." Is that really what's going on here?
MIGEUL DE GRANDY, FLORISA RECOUNT PROCESS: We do agree that every vote must be counted, but when you do things behind closed doors, when you do not report periodically as you are supposed to, when you deny access to people to witness in the election process which our law by the way requires that it be witnessed, then you do sow doubts in the electorate as to the integrity of the election.
Some things we know so far, we know 22 illegal votes were mixed with votes that were valid votes. That can't be taken back because those are anonymous. We know that a loose one noncitizen voted and that the Gillum campaign was advocating to have that vote count. And so when there is irregularities that occur, when there is no public viewing of the process, it does create questions.
INGRAHAM: Well, when I say every vote must count that such a noble, you know, blanket statement. It's a great sentiment. But John, isn't it true that every legal vote must count, and the rules have to apply across the board regardless of what outcome you wish in the end?
EASTMAN: Now, that's right and I will give you one example. A court decision in August against Brenda Snipes -- I was intrigued by her saying that she has never made a mistake before. They were opening absentee ballots unsupervised in secret. The reason that significant is you've got to verify that the absentee ballot is from a legal voter before that ballot is taken out and put into the anonymous box where you can't otherwise pull it back.
And she was doing this and got an injunction issued against her to stop that. These are the kind of things that are routinely going on down there and that's a problem. We learned it in 2000. We learned about dimpled ballots that cannot be dimpled without breaking the thing unless you packed in several ballots at once. I mean these are the kind of things that have been going on there way too long.
INGRAHAM: Miguel, and so there are some of the smaller races, well, that are very significant positions in Florida have also been affected by this. After trailing Republican Matt Caldwell after Tuesday's vote for the agricultural commissioner, which is a big position in Florida, has enormous significance in policymaking in the state.
Democrat Nikki Fried now leads him by 5,326 votes. So, they found those votes too! How is this possible that you are finding votes all these days after an election?
DE GRANDY: That's a big question mark and we are trying to find out. The bottom line right now is that the votes that were reported Saturday are the universal votes. They are going to be subject to the recount. We have the governor trailing by -- the governor-elect trailing by 34,000 votes. The senator-elect trailing by 12,000 votes. I do not think a recount is going to make a difference in this case even if you bring in --
INGRAHAM: Rarely does, correct? Yes, they rarely make a any difference. Swings 100 to 200 votes either way.
DE GRANDY: Yes, and even if you bring in the votes that are subject to the lawsuit in the panhandle, you are talking about 2,000 votes. That's not going to swing this election. And the important thing is to make sure that there are a lot of eyes on this process from this moment on.
INGRAHAM: Well John, we're talking about so many ways Republicans could have handled this in the years leading up to this. To me, it's a swing and a miss for Rick Scott who I think has been a phenomenal governor. Why wasn't this cleaned up?
I got so many radio callers say why isn't this cleaned up by now. Brenda Snipes by the way, Andrea Mitchell said she was a Republican today -- no, she was appointed by a Republican. Bush, who's now said she should be --
EASTMAN: She was re-appointed by Jeb Bush but after another election scandal when they found hundreds of ballots --
INGRAHAM: Registered Democrats.
EASTMAN: Yes, hundreds of ballots stuffed into a drawer. They weren't ever counted. Look, there are two things here. One, the reason we keep adding new accounts is because they are accepting absentee ballots that come in after the legal deadline. That's a violation of Florida law.
INGRAHAM: Why is that a violation of the voting rights act?
EASTMAN: Well, it is.
INGRAHAM: Why does it not cancel out lawful votes?
EASTMAN: It does lawful votes. And then the second thing is, we don't have any chain of custody. I mean anybody that watches any crime show knows about the chain of custody evidence We ought to be applying the same principle of the chain of custody.
INGRAHAM: The integrity of every document, every ballot must be insured.
EASTMAN: And it ought not to go outside the office without both a Democrat and a Republican watching where it goes.
INGRAHAM: Well, this happened -- are you concerned this could happen going forward in 2020?
ASTMAN: I am very concerned and, you know, one of the reasons we have the National Voter Registration Act and the Help America Vote Act was to provide money to the states to make sure this stuff did not happen again and here it is.
INGRAHAM: Yes. It seems like some of it was wasted. Gentlemen, thank you so much. And up next, my ANGLE takes on Michelle Obama's new memoir. Stay right there.
INGRAHAM: Becoming or unbecoming? That's the focus of tonight's Angle. Michelle Obama's rolling out her new memoir titled "Becoming" with the exactly the sort of fanfare we've come to expect from the Obama's 13-city book tour, and touchy-feeling arena interviews by celebrity moderators.
Today, the former first lady gave a pre-launch sit down with "GMA's" Robin Roberts. And the issue of race figured prominently. Even when Mrs. Obama spoke of meeting her husband.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBIN ROBERTS, ABC HOST: He comes blowing into town, a little bit famous already, late for the first meeting.
MICHELLE OBAMA, FORMER FIRST LADY: Late. Late. I was like, is he trifling? Does the black man's going to be late on the first date? I'm like ---
ROBERTS: You went weren't overtly impressed in the beginning?
M. OBAMA: I wasn't, you know, I had my suspicions when a bunch of white folks falling over a black man because I sort of think, OK, he can talk straight, so they think he's wonderful. So, that was my theory.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Stereotyping much? Well, for all of her beauty, her glamour, her obvious accomplishments, the former first lady just can't get past race. It's like a loop that almost seems to play on her head, one that surfaces repeatedly in her public comments?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTS: What do you wish you could tell your pre-White House self?
M. OBAMA: You know, the hard parts were the things that I expected. That it was going to be hard, you know. So much of this country lives in isolation and we just don't know each other. And so there were people who didn't know what a black woman was and sounded like. So, I knew that was going to be a challenge, that I would have to earn my grace.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Wait, wait, wait. Americans didn't know what a black woman was and sounded like? What America is that? Long before anyone had ever heard of Barack or Michelle Obama, America had already made enormous progress vis-a-vis race. Think about it. Some of the biggest names in business, medicine, the law, entertainment, sports, and media are African-American. But, of course, this isn't the first time we've heard Mrs. Obama share her feelings about America. Remember this comment she made after her husband won the nomination in 2008.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
M.OBAMA: Let me tell you something. For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: That was before she won the nomination, but you get the point. Again, until the Obamas showed up, America was in sad shape racially. At least we've led to believe that. Well, contrary to her well-cultivated public image, Michelle Obama from her earliest years at Princeton was extremely political. Well, that's fine. No big deal. And she grew up in a middle-class Chicago household.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
M.OBAMA: Across the street, I usually meet my friend Terry Johnson right in front of that garage. This is my block.
ROBERTS: Three generations of Robinson's lived here on Euclid Avenue, a home owned by Michelle's great Aunt Robbie and Uncle Terry.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Well, she was a daughter of a Democrat ward boss and she worked her way up to the Ivy League. Laudable no doubt. But contrast the (inaudible) media coverage of Michelle's personal story with the way another black female brainiac had been treated over the years, conservative scholar Condoleezza Rice.
Now, Rice grew up in far worse conditions, in the segregated south. She would earn degrees from the University of Denver, Notre Dame, and a fellowship at Stanford University where she eventually became a professor and a provost. Oh, and she did become the first female African-American Secretary of State in 2005 long before anyone heard of Michelle or Barack Obama.
Now, I guess Condoleezza was just unable to show us what a prominent woman was like or sounded like. Again, it's all who tells the story. I mean, Michelle Obama collected more magazine covers than vegetables from that White House garden. While a real cover girl, First Lady in Melania Trump, of course, supermodel, is lucky if she gets her picture in the Parade magazine insert.
This Michelle Obama book launch, when you really think about it, is just one more example of someone cashing in for trashing Donald Trump. And also of course it helps set the table for 2020. The Obama's still want to be the big power brokers in the Democratic Party, and Michelle is a global superstar, so she helps frame the issues for Democratic Party still straddling the old and the new. In the aftermath of the election, Hillary Clinton tried to explain remember, why 52 percent of white women voted for Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Due to ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Now, Michelle Obama takes that snide condescension a step further, writing in her memoir "Becoming," "I will always wonder about what led so many women in particular to reject an exceptionally qualified female candidate and instead choose a misogynist as their president." Very nice.
Now, remember, she wasn't paid that huge advanced that she got for her book to share fashion tips or pumpkin pie recipes, but to deliver body blows to Trump with a velvet glove.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
M.OBAMA: I said what I continued to say. Being a commander-in-chief is a hard job and you need to have discipline and you need to read and you need to be knowledgeable. You need to know history. You need to be careful with your words. But voters make those decisions and once the voters have spoken, you know, we live with what we live with.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Drat. Democracy. Well, Michelle Obama's attack on the president and her dismissive writing, writing off a whole chunk of the American electorate and a sizable group of women that she claims that she cares so much about, maybe it's surprising to some but it's really not unexpected.
She is for all of her protestations a political actor. But wrapped in the glittery embrace of celebrity, Michelle hopes women will look pass some of that along the edges, some of it acidic of her memoir, because Oprah today named it one of her book club picks.
But if Michelle Obama continues the divisive and racially obsessed politics she's been pedaling in advance of this release, readers may consider it one of their least favorite things. And they may even find some of her political commentary unbecoming. And that's The Angle.
All right, up next, can't miss reaction to The Angle and Michelle Obama's intentions in this book from Candace Owens, Monica Crowley, and Michelle Ritchie. Don't move.
INGRAHAM: Here to respond to my Angle, Candace Owens, communications director for Turning Points USA, Monica Crowley, senior columnist for The Washington Times, and Democratic strategist Rochelle Ritchie. Candace, are these political swipes and reworked old stories, are they really worth the half of the reported $65 million advance that Michelle Obama was paid for her memoir by Crown Publishing?
CANDACE OWENS, COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR, TURNING POINTS USA: I think to the Democrat Party, they are definitely worth it. These are the same tired and baseless accusations that everybody says when they want to sell books. We saw this from Michael Wolff, we saw this from Omarosa. They are constantly using the president and trying to feed the divisive rhetoric that's already out there in the media.
But I take great exception to the idea that our president, this tired, baseless accusation, that he's a misogynist. Misogyny does not appoint Sarah Sanders. Misogyny does not appoint Kellyanne Conway. Misogyny does not appoint everybody on his staff that we are seeing that is being led by women. But it's really ridiculous and it's tired, but it's really unbecoming especially coming from a former administration to constantly verbally assault this president.
INGRAHAM: Rochelle, it's interesting coming from someone who's such a global celebrity as Michelle Obama to hear her sound I would say rather ordinary in her criticism of the president. What she said about the president, without necessarily mentioning his name, was what you would hear on one of the other cable networks. Morning, noon, night, you could pick that out of the commentary you hear from all the Trump haters on the other cables. So how does that really distinguish Michelle Obama from any garden-variety leftist?
ROCHELLE RITCHIE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Look, Laura, I think it's no surprised that I'm the only person on this panel right now who's really excited to actually read Michelle Obama's book. I think she's an exceptional woman. I think that she serves as a great example to women all across the world, that our ticket to success is our brains and not our body.
And I think that she's simply telling her truth. The xenophobic accusations that were hurled at her husband were definitely offensive, and as she mentioned in her book, it put her family at risk. And I think she's just being very candid and very honest. This is one portion of the book where she is talking about Trump. It's not entirely about Trump.
So I don't see really the problem with her writing this book, and I think many more first ladies, I'm sure first lady Melania Trump will come out with a book and she will share her personal feelings what it was like to be in a Trump White House. So I'm not really sure why there is so much anger and hatred as far as Michelle Obama coming out and sharing her truth.
INGRAHAM: It's not anger. It's certainly not hatred. We have nothing personally against the first lady, and I think she's extremely impressive as an individual, as a mother, as a spokesperson for what she believes in. So I think she's very impressive. We are talking something that they decided to sell this book with. Trump-trashing is a cash-in scenario, Monica. When you trash Trump -- and you could say the same thing about people criticizing Obama early on in the presidency, be fair here. But you trash Trump, you get a big advance. Why is that interesting? That's my point. It's interesting to hear about her growing up, I guess maybe how she met Barack, although we've heard those stories before. But Trump is a racist, Trump is a misogynist, Trump is a misogynist -- OK. We've been hearing that now for years.
MONICA CROWLEY, COLUMNIST, THE WASHINGTON TIMES: Right. And it's boring and predictable, and that's why it's so disappointing to hear it from the former first lady. There used to be a rule, Laura, that if you had nothing nice to say about someone, don't say anything at all. And that rule was also supposed to extend to former presidents, their wives, and others in a president's inner circle. And Mr. Obama's predecessors have abided by that rule, but neither the former president nor the first lady have.
And I wonder if she has some political ambitions of her own, which is why she thinks she can stake out this ground in attacking the president. But I also think both of them were so concerned when President Trump was elected that their entire legacy was about to go out the window. We were told for eight years by the Obamas and everyone in their administration was that the new normal was high unemployment and the loss of manufacturing jobs and anemic economic growth and American decline and the globalist march, all these things were inevitable. President Trump have put the lie to all that. And so I think what you are seeing is enormous frustration and lashing out on the part of Mrs. Obama and, frankly, everybody in the Obama administration.
INGRAHAM: I want to play for you something from Zerlina Maxwell, I'll go do Candace on this. And she was on MSNBC today on this very subject. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ZERLINA MAXWELL, SENIOR DIRECTOR OF PROGRESSIVE PROGRAMMING FOR SIRIUS XM: I agree with her. The fact we elected someone who had no qualifications to be a president who was running against a woman with a laundry list of qualifications to be president, and instead America, or the electorate, chose to give the Electoral College to the person with no experience who happened to be a man just like all of the other presidents. So what Michelle Obama is highlighting is the fact that that that in it of itself is misogynistic and sexist, and perhaps as a country we should take a moment to reflect on that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Again, woman who voted for Trump are either dumb or they are just following their husbands, and we are not going to offer any ideas, Candace, about how to raise the standard of living for the average American. We're just going to call people misogynist, racist, xenophobic, nativist, all the ists and all the isms. They are all worn out, forget the actual debating of ideas.
OWENS: That's exactly correct. And look, you're right. It is frustration, it is fatigue. They're not offering anything of substance. There's no ideological debate taking place. It has been proven now. OK, you were apprehensive in the beginning about Trump and his lack of experience in the realm of politics. But it's now proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that this president has been tremendously successful. So at this point it feels a bit like whining.
And I think just as Americans, we are ready to move on from this concept of everybody has to be an ism if they don't think like me. You don't elect somebody because they are a woman. You elect somebody because they are best person suited for the job. And up against Hillary Clinton President Trump was a much stronger candidate. He ran a better campaign and that's why he's sitting in the Oval Office today.
INGRAHAM: Rochelle, do you think that the press has treated Melania in the same way that they treated Michelle?
RITCHIE: Look, no. I don't think they have, and I can be honest about that. When we look at how Michelle Obama was treated, she was treated in a very different way. But I think that's because her husband was also not pushing forward a very divisive rhetoric in the press, and her husband was not attacking the press.
And this is something -- Melania is not innocent in this at all, either, when it comes to this whole birther issue which she also pedaled for her husband. So no, they haven't treated her fairly, but at the same time I think they are looking at the sort of administration, the sort of rhetoric that is coming from her husband, and it's not attractive to them.
INGRAHAM: Are you aware of the polls at the end of the Obama administration about whether the country felt like his eight years in office had united the country, are you aware of those, Rochelle?
RITCHIE: What I'm aware of is that 77 percent of the country right now in the polls that came out just before the midterm elections says that the country feels that they are more divisive. I am aware of that poll.
INGRAHAM: I understand that. But what I'm trying to say, and Monica, I'm sure you're aware of this, that there was a wild percentage of Americans who believed that the Obama presidency was not a uniting force in America. Despite all the promise and the historic nature of his presidency, people felt like the country was more divided and less united, and angrier. And this was not a "Daily Caller" poll. I think it was AP or "Washington Post." Forgive me for not having it off the top of my head. I did it today on radio. But Monica, so the idea that Trump is the great divisive factor in America, it's not how a lot of people felt at the end of eight years of Obama, which is why in part they elected Trump.
CROWLEY: That's exactly right. And what we saw over eight years with President Obama is that while he was personally popular, people appreciated the fact that he was an exceptional character, the first African-American president and they were a proud of that fact, his policies were wholly unpopular. And in some ways that's the mirror image where personally he is not so popular, but his policies are incredibly popular.
And getting back to the Melania issue, any Republican first lady is going to be treated like this, Laura. It's just a fact of the double standard life in America, unfortunately. And it's really unfair to her. But I think Americans by and large are sick of the double standard, and that's why --
INGRAHAM: It's apparent.
CROWLEY: -- continuing support for President Trump because he's trying to smash it.
INGRAHAM: It's apparent. And Candace, we're almost out of time, but the Bushs did not criticize the Obamas. They didn't.
OWENS: That's correct.
RITCHIE: Why would they? Why would they? I'm sorry. I know you're talking to Candace.
INGRAHAM: Because they doubled the debt. Because we had Benghazi, because Obamacare was a cramdown, let me count the ways.
RITCHIE: But they also didn't question whether or not Obama was born in this country. I don't even you can make that kind --
OWENS: These are cheap shots. I'm going to finish my -- it's them trying to resuscitate their relevancy, because, unfortunately, this president has laid slaughter to the Obama legacy and that's what's going on.
RITCHIE: No, not at all.
INGRAHAM: All right, guys, thanks so much. And President Trump called out once again for his embrace of nationalism by the leader of a country who has benefited from American power, of course. The foremost intellectual on nationalism is here to answer Emmanuel Macron, next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: They have a word. It sort of became old-fashioned. It's called a nationalist. And I say really, we're not supposed to use that word? You know what I am? I'm a nationalist, OK. I'm a nationalist.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: President Trump has defended his use of the term "nationalism" as an intense love of one's country. But leftist commentators and other internationalists say it's a dog whistle to white supremacists. And now on an occasion commemorating the 100 year anniversary of the armistice ending World War I, French President Emmanuel Macron has joined the fray.
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EMMANUEL MACRON, FRENCH PRESIDENT (through translator): Patriotism is the exact opposite of nationalism. Nationalism is a betrayal of patriotism by saying our interests first, who cares about the others?
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INGRAHAM: Joining me now, Yoram Hazony. He's the author of the book "The Virtue of Nationalism," and Mark Simakovsky, former NATO chief of staff. Yoram, let me start with you. What does Macron get wrong here about nationalism?
YORAM HAZONY, PRESIDENT, THE HERZL INSTITUTE: Well, Laura, Macron is pursuing the same agenda that he's repeatedly since he was elected president of France a year-and-a-half ago. Just in October at the United Nations, Macron told us he deplores a world that he calls a world of lawlessness in which everyone pursues their own interest. Macron has a problem with the idea of national interest. He says that national interest is national selfishness. And now he's telling President Trump that to be a nationalist and to pursue your own interest is a betrayal of moral values.
INGRAHAM: All right, Mark, this is what Christian (ph) Whitten (ph) is saying about Macron's commentary. Let's watch.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Macron within the E.U. is under a lot of pressure. Frankly, Germany is willing to cut a deal on the trade changes that Trump wants, to lower tariffs across the board. Macron doesn't like that. He doesn't like the pressure. He doesn't like having to spend more on the military. He doesn't like the fact that Italy is, along with Britain, peeling away from the E.U., not quite as directly, yet. Eastern Europe, not as kosher on the E.U. So a lot of these things just aren't going the way that this form this former investment banker would like them to go.
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INGRAHAM: Mark, if globalism of the sort that Macron loves, and internationalism, was helping the average German or Frenchman, there wouldn't be a backlash against internationalism or globalism. There would be let's do more of it. But they are under enormous pressure, are they not?
MARK SIMAKOVSKY, FORMER NATO CHIEF OF STAFF: They absolutely are. I think this speech, there's two parts of the speech. One is Macron is a encapsulating himself as an opponent of Trump, and he's betting that the French people believe and are supportive of an anti-Trump --
INGRAHAM: As a national front pushing back on him. Obviously, they've had gains in recent polls and recent local elections.
SIMAKOVSKY: And this is risky for Macron because he has European elections coming up next year which will be the first barometer for his own term. He's trying to put himself in polar opposite to Trump. And of course, he's isolated because Mrs. Merkel's also political ambitions are on the decline. But also I think this was a warning. This speech was a warning to those that believe that the nationalism and populism that fueled World War One is the rise and is a danger to the European continent. I think he was brave in making that statement at the speech.
INGRAHAM: Yoram, this is what Ainab Salbi said today about what nationalism actually creates. Let's watch.
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AINAB SALBI, AUTHOR: What led to World War I and World War II is nationalism, basically. It is divisions and fighting. European allies have seen the wards, have seen actually the consequences of what nationalism could destroy their own countries. And so when Macron says about collaboration and fighting together for the common good, when he talks about creating a European army, you have to watch for these things. And I feel like this is the beginning of the European separation from America. And this is really scary.
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INGRAHAM: This is really scary. Why is it scary for Europe to spend more money on Europe's defense? A hundred years after the World War I armistice, why is that calamitous to the internationalists? I'm not following that.
HAZONY: This is the same propaganda that we've been hearing from liberal intellectuals in Europe since right after World War II. They always have the same mantra that nationalism caused the world wars. Historically, if you go after World War I and you actually see, you'll see that most people after World War I believed that what caused the First World War to go on for four and a half years and to leap to 20 million deaths was the life and death struggle between German imperialism trying to break the back of British imperialism in its effort to take over the world. With World War II, you can say the same thing. Adolf Hitler, if he hadn't wanted to take over the world, if he hadn't said in "Mein Kampf" that his goal was to make Germany the lord of the earth and mistress of the globe, he might've been a terrible German leader, but he would not have led to the deaths of 50 million or 60 million people. So this claim --
INGRAHAM: I see what you're saying. But Mark, just very quickly, respond to that. Nation-building, wanting to transpose our view of democracy on other nations, we've lost trillions of dollars, countless lives, damaged lives at home, depleted our military. We weren't pursuing nationalist agenda in Iraq or Afghanistan or all throughout the Middle East, went with?
SIMAKOVSKY: No, but I think what Mr. Macron is saying is that Europe has maintained peace when the trans-Atlantic community has been united, has cooperated. When the common elements of common security, which NATO represents, actually supports American interests and support French, German, U.K. interests. And there is a risk today that trans-Atlantic unity is falling apart.
INGRAHAM: Where are they going to go, into the arms of China? Where European going to go?
SIMAKOVSKY: No. I think the fear is that Trump is going to take the United States out of the game, and that Russia and China can create conflict like they are creating in eastern Ukraine, that China is creating in the South China Sea, and the U.S. won't be there to help secure the peace.
INGRAHAM: Gentlemen, fascinating conversation. Thank you so much.
And up next, we go live to the ground in California where those devastating fires continue to ravage two separate parts of the state.
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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's never been anything like this. I've never seen the devastation, carnage, never.
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INGRAHAM: Three separate wildfires continue to rage in California tonight and the devastating images continue to pour in. Evacuee John Yates remarking to USA Today, "It just looked like "Dante's Inferno." Black and red was all you can see.
The numbers are heartbreaking, over 200,000 acres completely scorched, tens of thousands of structures completely destroyed. And then there's the human toll -- 31 have been confirmed dead with another 230 unaccounted for. Joining us now on the ground in Paradise, California, is Rachel Shackelford, a local horse trainer leading efforts to evacuate animals as well. Rachel, thank you for being here. I am so sorry for what you and everyone in your community have been going through. It's almost too much to comprehend. How are you personally holding up? And if you could take us through some of your efforts.
RACHEL SHACKELFORD, HORSE RESCUE VOLUNTEER: My gosh. Thank you. It's been a long five day, so I apologize. I'm a little weary over here. It's a very humbling experience being out here. It's just amazing how a lot of us, the horse community, are really coming together. Everyone is donating what they can, if they can't, their time, their finances, their resources. It really does take a village to help everyone out here. And all of our hearts go out, so we are all working together very closely to just come together and be out here are the people, their animals, their properties, their neighbors, their friends, their family. It's been very devastating being out here.
INGRAHAM: Rachel, I was so heartened to see through all this heartbreak and tragedy was that people were putting aside their differences, their political differences, and just what can I do to help you. What do you need? Can I get you a truck, trailer, feed? You can you bring your animal to my home.
And we need to do more of that in this country. I'm a political commentator, but the best of our country comes out in a time of crisis, and that applies to politicians who should sometimes button it and not comment on things, and people like me and others. But I just applaud all of you for doing what we should do to help our fellow man. It's awesome.
SHACKELFORD: Thank you. Thank you so much. NorCal Livestock Evacuation and Rescue, this is what we're about. We are a bunch of volunteers that are put together. We work individually with the owners. So if the area is clear we're able to come out and get their animals. We are closely working with CHP, with the rangers, with the game wardens. We're out here wanting to make sure that we are also safe as well as the properties, so when we go in here and get these animals, then we can go ahead and bring them back to the volunteers and the other certified help that are working closely with the veterinarians to get the animals the care that they need so they can be reunited.
And it is amazing how much social media has gone on. All of us, every once in a while, we are like, man, we don't want to get on Facebook. But it has been amazing at how far Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. Yes, it is tagging people --
INGRAHAM: They got it done. It's amazing. Rachel, thank you so much. Incredible report. And don't lose your own life. As much as we want to save our animals, look at for yourself, too, my friends. Up next, the last bite.
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RONALD REAGAN, FORMER PRESIDENT: The living have a responsibility to remember the conditions that led to the wars in which our heroes died. Perhaps we can start by remembering this, that all of those who died for us and our country were in one way or another victims of a peace process that failed. Victims of a decision to forget certain things, to forget, for instance, that the surest way to keep a peace going is to stay strong. Weakness, after all, is a temptation. It tempts the pugnacious to assert themselves. But strength is a declaration that cannot be misunderstood.
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