This is a rush transcript from "Your World with Neil Cavuto" December 23, 2020. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
CHARLES PAYNE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: Will the check be in the mail or not?
President Donald Trump about to depart the White House for Florida, but not
before threatening to kill the spending bill and coronavirus relief bill
over wasteful spending that he says goes too far and stimulus checks that
don't go far enough.
We will see if he talks to reporters on its way out.
Welcome, everyone. I'm Charles Payne, in for Neil Cavuto, and this is "Your
Later this hour, Texas Republican Congressman Kevin Brady, who voted for
the bill. What will he do if the president vetoes this? And Karl Rove on
the impact in Georgia from this.
First, though, to David Spunt in Washington with the very latest on this --
DAVID SPUNT, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Charles, good afternoon to you. You
mentioned the word veto.
Before leaving the White House today for Florida for the Christmas and New
Year's holidays, the president did veto the National Defense Authorization
Act, which funds the Department of Defense, also the United States
military, the president -- and this just in the last 45 minutes --
announced that he was doing so.
One of the sticking points was the names of Confederate soldiers and
Confederate generals on military bases. The president wanted to keep them
there. But, ultimately, that did not happen in the final language. So the
president veto that. It appears that there may be an override of that veto
in the House and Senate.
Now getting on to what you were talking about, the COVID relief, this has
been going on for months, the negotiations. And, yesterday, the president
came out last night and said, wait a minute, the United States, Americans
need more money in their pocket; $600 is not enough. He wants $2,000,
possibly more, to go to families who are in need, who have been affected by
The president put out this video last night from the White House on social
media. He complained about that $600, calling those payments -- quote --
"ridiculously low." This was a package, though, his own Treasury secretary
spent months negotiating. Listen here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It really is a disgrace.
It's called the COVID relief bill. But it has almost nothing to do with
I am asking Congress to amend this bill and increase the ridiculously low
$600 to $2,000 or $4,000 for a couple.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SPUNT: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who doesn't agree with much with
President Trump, she tweeted: "Republicans repeatedly refused to say what
amount the president wanted for direct checks. At last, the president has
agreed to $2,000. Democrats are ready to bring this to the floor this week
by unanimous consent. Let's do it!"
Now, 10 days from now, the president, any time he gets legislation to his
desk, Charles, he has 10 days, not including Sundays, to either sign or
veto it, which makes this very interesting, is the fact that 10 days from
now is January 3. That is the day the 117th Congress takes over.
If the president does nothing, he could do what's called a pocket veto,
where he essentially just sits on it. Then the legislation dies. It's
possible that he could do that in its current form. He could send it back.
It's also possible that the House and Senate could override that veto.
Now, we have heard a little bit about a pro forma session. That means that
the House, a small group of members of the House are going to come back
tomorrow for about 30 seconds. They are going to propose the $2,000 checks
on the House floor, and then see where that goes.
But that's something the White House and Democrats and also many
Republicans say, $600, just not enough -- Charles.
PAYNE: Hey, thank you very much.
So, is this the wrong time for the president to be picking this particular
Market watcher Heather Zumarraga says it is, but FOX News political analyst
Gianno Caldwell disagrees.
Gianno, I will let you go first. Why do you think it's the exact right
GIANNO CALDWELL, FOX NEWS POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, truth be told, the
Republican Party in Congress has been derelict in their duties to the
By virtue of saying, hey, $600 is good enough for those who've lost their
jobs and suffered through the COVID restrictions of these particular states
and local municipalities is unacceptable. How dare you choose to send $1.3
billion to Egypt and to their military, but yet and still not take care of
the veterans here in our country?
How dare you say, because someone made $75,000 last year, that they can
only get so much of the COVID relief funding? How dare you think that this
isn't about America first? Americans should be taken care of. We paid our
taxes. We paid our dues, and a lot of individuals have suffered, at no
fault of their own.
No one expected COVID. No one wanted COVID. And, certainly, we have a lot
of folks who are out of business. Over 500,000 businesses have filed for
bankruptcy since the start of COVID. And now you're telling us that $600 is
enough for people who've suffered? Absolutely not.
They're just as bad as the Democrats at this point.
HEATHER ZUMARRAGA, FINANCIAL ANALYST: Right.
Look, it's imaginary money in the first place. So I'm not saying $600 is
good enough for many Americans that have lost their jobs. But what I am
saying is that there is a lot of waste, wasteful spending in this bill. Six
GOP senators have voted against it.
We are giving tens of millions of dollars to foreign aid. Two new museums
in D.C. is part of the bill as well. And so, when you look at all this
waste, including money towards gender studies, what does that have to do
with COVID relief? So, money does need to go to small businesses. Money
does need to go to the people who have lost their jobs, and, arguably, not
the big corporations and those that are doing well during a pandemic, and
for funding a vaccine.
And the rest of it just might be waste.
PAYNE: Well, just might be waste?
PAYNE: It's so funny, because the first CARES Act, between unemployment
benefits and supplements, totaled $754 billion to the American households,
direct payments. This one would be $286 billion.
And, Gianno, it makes me wonder, where the heck is the rest of that $900
CALDWELL: Well, it's going to places that we -- we're not getting the
benefit of it. And I'm talking about American citizens.
The whole purpose of taxes is to ensure that the citizens who may fall on
hard times are taken care of by the government. There's a lot of folks who
want to work. They can't work. They got restrictions in Los Angeles. People
are fleeing New York for places like Miami, where it's open and people can
But yet and still folks who are a part of my party, the Republican Party,
leaders like Mitch McConnell, is, saying, this is sufficient, this is good
Absolutely not. President Trump was right to say -- well, rather, suggest
that he may veto this particular legislation, because it's not sufficient,
it's not America first, and it is not what the American people expect when
they send people to Congress.
We need help, and we need help now. And people -- unfortunately, for voters
in places like Georgia, where we got two Senate races, they're not going to
forget about this stuff. I posted something on my Instagram about this
today, @GiannoCaldwell, for folks who want to view it.
Republican after Republican had been bashing the party. And this might
impact the Georgia races, given it straight into the hands of the
Democrats, because people need to be taken care of. This is why we are here
in this country and paying taxes.
ZUMARRAGA: I would just argue, the best way do that--
PAYNE: So, Heather, go ahead.
ZUMARRAGA: Yes, that -- is to give people a job, right?
You reopen the economy. You mentioned jobs. There are job openings, not the
ideal jobs of working at McDonald's or working in an Amazon warehouse.
There are openings. You extend the unemployment benefits to provide
But as we get the vaccine distributed, the best way to take care of the
American people is by getting them a job and going back to work. This is
relief -- or supposed to be relief aid, not stimulus spending, because some
would argue it's not the government's job to take care of people. It is the
government's job to provide relief when they have forcefully closed
businesses, like small businesses, so many of them, down.
And the problem is, of course, every single day, those businesses that go
out of business won't come back on.
PAYNE: This thing could go away in a week. Those businesses that are dead
today are dead and gone.
Heather and Gianno, great seeing both of you. Merry Christmas.
CALDWELL: And month of -- months of no relief, months and months of no
PAYNE: Absolutely. Absolutely.
Well, in the meantime, though, millions of Americans are traveling for the
holiday, that despite all the health warnings.
Garrett Tenney is at Chicago's O'Hare keeping track of it all -- Garrett.
GARRETT TENNEY, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Charles, one out of four --
every four Americans is expected to travel this holiday season, nearly 85
million people, according to AAA.
Only a small fraction of those folks will actually be getting on a plane,
three million, compared to the vast majority who will be traveling by road,
81 million people driving to visit family and friends.
Now, holiday travel overall is down significantly, 34 million fewer people
traveling, compared to last year. That could be an indication that a lot of
folks are heeding the advice of public health officials to stay home for
the holidays to try and limit the spread of the coronavirus.
Those who are traveling say they are fully aware of the risk. And after the
kind of year we have had, they feel like it's a risk worth taking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think we all are scared of COVID during our daily
life. So I think -- I think this is something I have to do just to see my
family a couple of days and then come back.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm going to be seeing my mom and grandmother for
Christmas. So, I just want to make sure that I'm negative, of course. My
grandmother is 90.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It feels like nothing's really been going on this year,
other than just tragedy after tragedy. I just felt like I needed to be
around with who I can be before I lose too many more.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TENNEY: New York City is going beyond travel recommendations, though, for
folks arriving from the U.K., and will be sending sheriff's deputies to
ensure that those folks are quarantining to try and stop the spread of a
new strain of the virus.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL DE BLASIO (D), MAYOR OF NEW YORK: All travelers, literally every
single traveler coming in from the United Kingdom, will receive a
Department of Health commissioner's order directing them to quarantine.
We are going to have sheriff's deputies go to the home or the hotel of
every single traveler coming in from the U.K.
Then there's going to be a follow-up direct home visit or hotel visit from
the sheriff's deputy to confirm that they are following the quarantine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TENNEY: And anyone caught not following the quarantine could be subject to
a fine of $1,000, and then another $1,000 for every day that it has been
Now, for those traveling stateside, the CDC is recommending you get tested
before and after you travel, and then quarantine for at least a week when
you get back home, regardless of whether or not your test has come back
negative -- Charles.
PAYNE: Garrett, thank you very much.
The Trump administration making a deal to buy 100 million more COVID-19
vaccine doses. Will that speed up when you can get your shot? And will they
work against these new strains? What officials from Operation Warp Speed
are saying right now.
And despite taking heat, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo doubling down
today, saying that he is indeed on Santa's nice list. Well, how do
struggling business owners in his state feel about that?
We will ask last one.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D-NY): I deserve to celebrate. I was good. I'm on
Santa's good list. I have that on inside information.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAYNE: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi just responding to the president's veto
of the defense spending bill, saying -- quote -- "The president's veto of
the National Defense Authorization Act is an act of staggering recklessness
that harms our troops, endangers our security, and undermines the will of
the bipartisan Congress."
The House will vote Monday on whether to override it.
And now this:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: I'm going to celebrate. I deserve to celebrate. I was good. I'm on
Santa's good list. I have that on inside information.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAYNE: Well, despite taking heat over lockdowns, New York Democratic
Governor Andrew Cuomo doubling down, saying he's on Santa's good list and
not the Grinch that critics make him out to be over his indoor dining ban.
Restaurant owner Andreas Koutsoudakis is back with us. And he disagrees.
By the way, we invited the governor on, and we are still waiting to hear
back from him.
Andreas, Andrew Cuomo insisting that he's been superlative throughout all
ANDREAS KOUTSOUDAKIS, OWNER, TRIBECA'S KITCHEN: Charles, thank you for
I can tell you that this is going to be the first Christmas in 36 years
that I'm not going to spend with my father, because died on March 27 from
COVID. Until he died -- until he died, he was working eight days a week, 30
hours a day.
So, this is no time for jokes and little stuff. This is serious. And this
goes to Cuomo. This goes to Mayor de Blasio .This goes to Republicans,
Democrats, House, Senate, president.
We don't care about your stupid games and this back -- bickering back and
forth. We want you to do the job and get it done. This isn't about
political posturing. It's not about, I got to make a point, it's an
opportunity to show that this side is wrong or that side is wrong.
Get the job done. I said it on -- when I interviewed with Neil, and I'm
going to say it again now. We don't have time. This isn't -- we're --
there's an industry that's dying of thirst in the middle of the desert, and
they're giving driblets of water, and they're seeing who's going to
complain the loudest before they give them the next driblet.
Just give us a bottle of water. Let us figure out when we want to drink,
how much and where we want to drink it, so we can move on and do we know
how to do, which is solve -- solve our own problems.
PAYNE: Andreas, what does a bottle of water look like, though, to your
industry? Is it the restaurants being opened at limited capacity, indoor
and outdoor dining? I mean, what does it look like that you're able to
survive on your own?
Because these draconian measures are sure to put more restaurants out of
KOUTSOUDAKIS: Listen, my opinion all of this is that this was all a game
for the state and -- for the state governor and the mayor here and every
other big city with major urban markets, such as Chicago and L.A. and San
Francisco and all -- you name it.
They basically used small businesses as a pawn. The more desperate, the
more dire the urgency was to provide them with relief, the more likely the
state and city governments were to get some sort of bailout. They were
betting that they would get -- they would be second in line and that they
would get it, so long as the small businesses got it.
Well, they failed. And now we're in a lose-lose situation, in terms of the
city and state's economics and every one of the cities and states that are
in this situation, because you got no business tax revenue from the small
businesses, and you also have no bailout for the state and city
So, now what do we do, right? So, they have -- if you're asking me what a
bottle of water looks like, it looks like a regular bottle of water that
everyone drinks from, not one that's blue for this part -- for this person,
but pink for him, and so on and so forth.
It's the same water that we all drink. You can't have different rules. Your
strategy failed. Now you have to level the playing field. There is
absolutely no basis for saying that New York City has a different set of
circumstances and we have a lot of density.
Well, guess what? The 75 percent that you took off the table when you kept
us -- when you capped it at 25 percent, that eliminated 75 percent of the
problem. The mass exodus that happened pre-COVID and the mass exodus that
happened after COVID solved a lot of the rest of the problem.
So, the density argument really has no validity. The only data we have ever
seen in terms of the restaurant industry in New York is that it's fourth on
the list in terms of severity; 1.4 percent of the cases result from
restaurants spreading it.
There is no reason whatsoever, other than that restaurants are the easy
scapegoat, like they always are.
PAYNE: Right. Andreas, thank you again.
I mean, I know what you're going through. I can feel what you're going
through. And so many people are rooting for you and pushing for you.
So, we will just try keep providing this platform for you as long as we
can. And, hopefully, all the rule-makers, the lawmakers will come to the
rescue, because they made this thing a lot worse than it had to be.
Thank you very much, my friend.
KOUTSOUDAKIS: We appreciate it.
Thank you, Charles. Thank you. Have a good day.
PAYNE: You too.
A hundred 100 million more vaccines, though, are coming to the United
States, Operation Warp Speed officials just wrapping up a press conference
with those details. They also revealed 20 million doses in total will have
been -- allocated, rather, to Americans by the end of this year.
Blake Burman joins us now from Washington with more -- Blake.
BLAKE BURMAN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, Charles.
The federal government already had a contract with Pfizer for 100 million
doses. And, today, we learned there is another deal now for another 100
million doses, Pfizer announcing that, along with its partner BioNTech,
with HHS, which is overseeing Operation Warp Speed.
Here are just some of the details behind those next batch of 100 million
doses. Price tag here, $1.95 billion. And here's how it will be divided up.
At least 70 million of those doses will be delivered by June 30. Whatever
is left, the remainder, will come by July 31, a month later.
The government also has the option at that point to buy 400 million more
doses. Now, the head of Operation Warp Speed, the HHS secretary, Alex Azar,
celebrating the agreement today, saying the following in part -- quote --
"This new federal purchase can give Americans even more confidence that we
will have enough supply to vaccinate every American who wants it by June
You just referenced that press briefing, that Operation Warp Speed press
briefing that just wrapped up. The head of distribution is General Gus
Perna. And he laid out the distribution as he sees it going forward,
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEN. GUSTAVE PERNA, U.S. ARMY MATERIEL COMMAND: -- pays for picking and
packing vaccines and putting them in boxes, making sure we do the right
We have had to adjust our timelines, just a mathematical problem. We have
been holding on to the second dose. We do -- we did that to make sure that
the supply chain was sufficient to ensure the second dose was there.
Well, Pfizer vaccines started being distributed last week. And it'll be
time for that vaccine to start going out to the American people next week.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURMAN: Charles, you will remember, earlier this month, there was a back-
and-forth over whether or not the U.S. government, the Trump administration
passed on a second round of this Pfizer dose.
Now we know, of course, that there's going to be another 100 million to
come. Add that to the 100 million before, 200 million doses. It's a two-
dose vaccine, so potentially 100 million people here in the U.S. could get
vaccinated with the Pfizer product. Add to that the Moderna vaccine that's
out there, and the hope here that in the upcoming weeks more vaccines will
come online -- Charles.
PAYNE: Blake, great news. Thank you very much.
Meanwhile, folks, lawmakers may be home for the holidays, but Republicans
are still putting heat on Speaker Nancy Pelosi to get Congressman Eric
Swalwell the Intelligence Committee. Is this getting to be a worrisome
issue for the Democratic Party?
And later: If the spending bill, relief bill face a veto, what impact will
it have on the Senate run-offs in Georgia?
Karl Rove is coming up. He will have the answers.
PAYNE: President Trump just departing Marine One. He's on his way to
So far, he has not spoken to reporters. Of course, there are a lot of
questions, particularly after he just vetoed the defense spending bill.
We will be right back in 60 seconds.
PAYNE: Republicans putting pressure on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to have
California Democrat Congressman Eric Swalwell removed from the House
Intelligence Committee over his connection to an alleged Chinese spy.
Is the Democrat Party at risk here politically?
Let's bring in RealClearPolitics' Phil Wegmann. He joins us now.
Phil, it feels strange to so many people, apolitical folks, the people not
really immersed in politics, that there -- that it appears that Nancy
Pelosi is shielding Eric Swalwell to this degree. The more we read about
the story, the more it seems pretty suspicious.
PHILIP WEGMANN, REALCLEARPOLITICS: And that's the calculus that
Republicans are banking on, because they see Representative Eric Swalwell
as the gift that keeps on giving.
They plan on hanging the congressmen around the necks of Democratic
leadership like a millstone going into 2021 and 2022. Their argument, put
simply, an argument directed towards those individuals who are looking at
this just through common sense, not through a political lens, is that if
Nancy Pelosi and House Democratic leadership do not remove him from the
Intelligence Committee, then, therefore, they are not serious about the
threat coming from China.
PAYNE: Of course, it felt like he was being set up to be a sort of golden
boy, if you will, of the party, particularly coming down hard on President
Trump with respect to the Russia probe.
He got a lot of face time. And he never met a camera he didn't like. Of
course, everyone in radio silence now. You think they felt like they
invested so much into his future stardom that they don't want to let it go?
WEGMANN: Yes, possibly.
I mean, if you look at the rise of Eric Swalwell, remember, he defeated a
Democratic incumbent in 2016, which put him on a positive trajectory. There
was some surprise that he would get a plum committee assignment like the
Intelligence Committee, something that Speaker Pelosi appointed him to.
And so I spoke to two Republican members of the House Intelligence
Committee, and they told me that, frankly, they're not comfortable even
having him in the room because of the sensitive nature of the information
that they handle there.
And they're -- they agree that, yes, he is cooperating with the FBI. He has
cooperated in the past. But their worry is that he has been compromised and
that he could be compromised further in the future.
PAYNE: So, does it all come down to on the outcome of the -- those Senate
races in Georgia on what happens next?
WEGMANN: I mean, it certainly -- I think that's something that could
definitely influence this. Perhaps you see Speaker Pelosi quietly remove
Swalwell in the new year.
From what we have seen from her public statements thus far, I don't think
that that is likely. But, look, one thing that you have to admit about Eric
Swalwell is that the man is bold. He knew about this investigation. He knew
that he had been caught up in an alleged Chinese attempt to play the long
game, to curry influence with members of Congress.
And yet, even after that, he still attacks the president and the
president's family over their alleged ties to Russia. And then, even now,
even now, after that Axios story, which laid it all to light, the
congressman still is not taking questions about his relationship with
WEGMANN: He certainly seems like he's willing to ride this out into the
PAYNE: Well, bold is certainly one word, although there are some others.
PAYNE: Phil, thank you very much. Appreciate it.
WEGMANN: Thank you, sir.
PAYNE: So, will president-elect Joe Biden's pick for attorney general
shake up the Hunter Biden probe? Why he could be waiting to see how the
Georgia shake -- Georgia elections shake out. We will explain.
We will be right back.
PAYNE: Does president-elect Biden have Georgia on his mind when it comes
to picking an attorney general?
Now, he says he isn't holding back to wait for the results of the Senate
run-offs. But there's a lot of anticipation surrounding the pick, with the
potential legal troubles mounting for Hunter Biden.
Let's get the read from former Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Yoo.
John, it's -- the plot thickens every single day on this. Just your
thoughts on where we are and what Joe Biden could be waiting for, because,
typically, a president-elect has picked the attorney general by now.
JOHN YOO, FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL: Well, merry Christmas,
And you're right. It is a tough pick. There's a lot of different things
that are pressing on Joe Biden's mind when he picks an attorney general.
Just one of them is what to do about Hunter Biden. Here you have a case
where the president-elect in the past has demanded independent counsels who
could not be fired by the president whenever there was a conflict of
Here you have the president's son already under federal investigation. If
you look at reports like the one that came out in The Wall Street Journal
today, there's more and more facts coming out which are placing Hunter
Biden in worse and worse light.
Is President Biden really going to appoint an attorney general who isn't
going to try to cover up or to help out the Biden family, but allow the
investigation to go forward?
And then the other thing that they're really worried about is gender racial
diversity. President Biden has said that -- president-elect Biden has said
he's going to pick the most diverse Cabinet in history. And so he's tried
to mix and match all kinds of different races and genders to get the right
That's also clearly delaying that pick as well. And then, as you said,
Charles, can someone get confirmed by a Republican Senate if the
Republicans can hold the two Senate seats in Georgia?
PAYNE: Well, you mentioned a special counsel. I know Senator Graham has
called for one. I think the American public may have some fatigue. But
there's also a lack of trust out there, general lack of trust.
What are your thoughts on a special counsel being named?
YOO: Personally, I'm not in favor of having someone who's completely
independent of the president.
I think Bob Mueller, however, in his investigation, he was someone who was
responsible to the attorney general who himself or herself was responsible
to the president. And if they try to meddle, they don't allow prosecutors
to follow the leads down to, with Hunter Biden's case, about whether he was
really involved with these Chinese companies, whether he was misreporting
really essentially gifts or even bribes on his taxes as income, if they --
if President Biden doesn't allow investigation like that to go forward,
even if he could fire him, then the American people are going to have
grievances and political resentment and may not support the
administration's initiatives, as well as Congress.
John, our own Peter Doocy asking the president-elect about all of this
yesterday. I want you to take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETER DOOCY, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Mr. President-Elect, do you still
think that the stories from the fall about your son Hunter were Russian
disinformation and a smear campaign, like you said?
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT-ELECT: Yes. Yes. Yes. God love you, man. You're a
one-horse pony, I'll tell you.
Thank you. Thank you.
I promise you my Justice Department will be totally on its own making its
judgments about how they should proceed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAYNE: All right, John, speaking of one-horse ponies, Democrats' default
is always Russia, Russia, Russia. But this involves Russian lawmakers,
Chinese tycoons and a whole lot of questions.
How confident are you that, whoever the next attorney general is, that we
will get true justice on this and find out the truth?
YOO: I'm worried.
But, as you say, Charles, it's really going to depend on who that attorney
general. Is that attorney general going to be strong enough to fend off the
inevitable pressures that are going to come from the White House to go easy
on Hunter Biden and the Biden family? It's not just Hunter Biden. It's the
president's brother is involved as well.
A lot of people on the left were giving Attorney General Bill -- (sic) Bob
Barr a hard time. But, in the end, Bill Barr actually allowed Mueller to
finish his report, allowed the report to be made public, allowed Mueller to
testify before Congress and lay out everything he had found.
And I think that's the very least we can expect from this new Biden
administration, that an attorney general should let prosecutors have a full
look at the evidence and give their findings to the American people, so
they can make a judgment.
PAYNE: Certainly, if you can make a -- if you could make a big to-do about
that Ukrainian phone call, and then you juxtapose that to some of the
things that we have seen, like -- quote, unquote -- "the big guy," using
those same criteria, this seems like it should have the full attention of
everyone, because the American people, we have already gone through these
kind of things.
We have seen where it was really important and critical to go down every
rabbit hole when it came to President Trump. Perhaps the same criteria
YOO: I agree.
If you apply the same standards, you would want to have a special counsel
or at least a prosecutor who's allowed to follow the evidence where it
leads and let that prosecutor bring the evidence to Congress and to the
American people. And then they can decide politically what to do, whether
they want to support this president, support his party, and so on, vote
them out of Congress and so on.
Hey, John, merry Christmas to you as well. Thank you very much. Always
appreciate your expertise when it comes to these matters.
So, folks, how do Republican lawmakers who voted for the COVID relief bill
feel about President Trump's veto threat? Kevin Brady is about to tell us.
And will any of this impact those crucial races down in Georgia? Karl Rove
is also coming up.
PAYNE: President Trump threatening to veto the coronavirus relief bill
Congress just passed this week, calling for $2,000 stimulus.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi agreed, tweeting that Democrats are ready to bring the
issue to a vote this week.
Will my next guest support it?
Texas Republican Congressman and House Ways and Means Committee Ranking
Member Kevin Brady joins me now.
Congressman Brady, it's always a pleasure.
Your thoughts on President Trump's pronouncement last night?
It's interesting, because I was shocked, just checking social media, how
many conservatives and Republicans were even appalled at the $600 number,
and a lot of folks thought it should be higher.
REP. KEVIN BRADY (R-TX): Yes, so Charles, one, merry Christmas and happy
holidays to you.
So, first, I wouldn't recommend to the president he veto this. He is right
to be upset about this process. Democrats in the House didn't even bother
to do a budget this year. And Speaker Pelosi, as you know, delayed for four
months the work that needed to be on COVID. So, everyone knew an end-of-
the-year-mess was coming.
But here's the key thing. President Trump won in these negotiations. First,
the COVID relief bill, which -- which Speaker Pelosi insisted on $3.4
trillion, turned out to be about one-tenth of that spending, all on the
areas President Trump insisted on, more help for small businesses, getting
airline workers back to work, helping defeat this COVID.
And on the overall spending bill, as you recall, these are several bills
put together. But in funding the government for the year, his priorities,
rebuilding the military, more money for the wall, fully funding veterans
and confronting China, he won every one of those elements.
And so, despite the process, which I think we all believe is appalling, but
there's no question this was a rout for the president.
PAYNE: I don't disagree that, certainly, the $1.8 trillion President Trump
offered up before the election has been acknowledged was turned down by
Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats strictly on political reasons.
But when Americans hear -- and, by the way, we know it's a couple of bills,
to your point. It's $2.3 trillion. It's a spending bill. It's a relief
But when people hear that Jordan is going to get $1.6 billion, and Cambodia
is going to get $85 million, and that there's going to be a gender study of
-- in Pakistan, and those kind of things, and yet wait for your check, it's
going to be a full 600 bucks, that's the kind of thing that blurs political
lines, Congressman Brady--
PAYNE: -- and offends a lot of people.
PAYNE: They feel like you guys are going home, you're going to get your
pay, you're going to enjoy Christmas, but $600 at this stage of the game is
BRADY: Yes, so a couple parts here.
One, there is no foreign aid in the COVID relief bill, no funding for
illegal immigrants. As you know, the funding -- most of this bill was--
PAYNE: I know. I know. But -- but let's just say the whole package,
though, the whole package.
But it's important not to, because, as you know, Congress finished funding
for the full year with the president's priority. Later, COVID and other
issues, including $320 billion of tax cuts, were later added. So, you do
need to talk about them separately.
Secondly, the foreign aid is pennies in this overall funding budget. In
fact, most of the foreign aid was focused just on what the president asked
for, which is, let -- we need dollars to support American values and
And, for example, I asked that same question about Pakistan. Why are we
spending money on gender issues to Pakistan? Well, it turns out that, in
the Middle East, President Trump and Ivanka Trump have been leading the
effort to make sure young girls can go to school, women can begin
businesses, because we have learned, when there are stronger women's rights
in those -- those Middle East countries, America is safer.
So, I don't disagree that there's elements of foreign aid that we don't
BRADY: But there's no question either the president overwhelmingly
prevailed in this bill.
And he should be proud of that $328 billion of tax cuts for families and
local businesses. He achieved that.
PAYNE: Congressman Brady, so, if President Trump does veto this, what
would you do?
Would you vote to override the veto, or would you go along with it, perhaps
taking a second look at this?
BRADY: You know, my biggest worry of vetoing it is that this spending
won't get smaller; it will get larger. That's what tends to happen when you
veto this legislation.
I also think spending especially for our troops, our border -- the border
wall funding, military in our really fight against China's encroachment
around the world, you have really delayed key funding there.
BRADY: So, again, he hasn't vetoed it yet.
BRADY: I'm eager for him to look at the full picture, because I will tell
you, I think he's finishing on a high note.
Oh, final point. You asked about the $2,000. Let me -- let's not overlook
that, between the CARES Act and the bill that passed yesterday, a family of
four, with one of the parents not working, will have received $21,000 --
nearly $21,000 of direct checks from the federal government.
PAYNE: All right.
BRADY: We ought to be looking at any new dollars from this standpoint:
Does it get people back to work?
BRADY: Does it drive the local economy?
PAYNE: Congressman Brady, I really appreciate you coming on.
And have a great Christmas. And we will see what happens very shortly.
Really, really do appreciate you coming on. Thank you so much.
BRADY: Thank you, Charles.
PAYNE: So, the question now, is the president's veto threat actually a
threat to Republicans in Georgia?
We have got Karl Rove coming up on that.
We will be right back.
PAYNE: So, how is the president's showdown over the spending bill going
down in Georgia?
Jonathan Serrie is in Atlanta with the latest -- Jonathan.
JONATHAN SERRIE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, Charles.
Well, after celebrating the passage of a coronavirus relief bill, Georgia's
Republican senators are now having to respond to the president's demands
that lawmakers increase individual payments. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. KELLY LOEFFLER (R-GA): I will certainly look at supporting it if it
repurposes wasteful spending toward that, yes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SERRIE: In an ironic twist today, Loeffler's Democratic challenger,
Raphael Warnock, issued a statement saying: "Donald Trump is right.
Congress should swiftly increase direct payments to $2,000."
And briefly, Charles, today, Georgia's Republican secretary of state told a
panel of Georgia legislators that he wants to secure future elections with
a series of reforms, including giving him the ability to fire local
elections officials who repeatedly screw up -- back to you.
PAYNE: Jonathan, thank you very much.
So, what impact will this have on the Senate run-offs in Georgia?
Let's ask former White House Deputy Chief of Staff and FOX News contributor
Karl, what's the read down there now?
KARL ROVE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, this makes it a murky, confusing
For the last couple of weeks, we have been having the Democrats take a
lackadaisical attitude towards COVID relief. One of them, Jon Ossoff, even
said, let's not get into the details about it, and sort of slow-plan.
And the two Republicans in last few days have been celebrating the success
of the Senate in passing a bill. And now it gets a little bit more
complicated. The president was not -- did not offer this up during the
course of the negotiations. And it's sort of a last-minute thing. And it's
going to make things more complicated.
PAYNE: What about, though, folks out there who might actually say, golly,
I need more than $600, and I'm glad that the president is pushing for this,
because Congress doesn't get just how out of touch -- it feels like the
average man or woman who cannot work from home is suffering pretty
ROVE: Yes. Look, I think that's right.
There are people who say, look, I'd like to have more. There are also
people who, though, have the opinion of, look, who's going to pay for it?
And particularly small businesspeople or people in agriculture might say,
we're -- $600 seems like a -- seems -- may seem small. But when you add it
all up, it's trillions of dollars, and it's a trillion dollars, and where's
that money coming from?
So, the better the -- the sooner this gets behind us, the better off we
are. People do want to have something done. But they don't want to have the
checkbook just sort of opened up and money thrown out the windows, and
there is the tension between them that want and them that thinks they ought
to restrain the spending.
PAYNE: Yes, I don't know that you have to make it a larger bill, right?
Only less than $300 billion that I can count will be going straight to
households, and a lot of people are wondering where the heck the rest of
Karl, what's going on with respect--
ROVE: Well, can I explain a little bit of that?
ROVE: A bunch of is going to small businesses to continue the Paycheck
Protection Program, in which small businesses get assistance in keeping
people at work, on the payroll, even if the sales don't justify it. That's
another way that even larger sums of money are being put into people's
And, more importantly, small businesses are kept alive, so those jobs
remain as the economy returns, and we don't have a lot of small businesses
go out of business.
PAYNE: No, I agree. We want to keep them whole, and we want to make sure
maybe people have money to go spend at those locations.
PAYNE: And some of these places, we need to keep those states open.
But I'm not a big poll person, but I do like them in terms of directions,
for directional stuff. Ironically, I like the gambling sites better.
Why can't -- why haven't the Republican candidates been able to stretch a
lead? They will get a little momentum for two or three days, and then, all
of a sudden, it looks like it's completely gone. Why can't they get the
sort of momentum that maybe they had in past elections?
ROVE: Well, because Georgia is changing. Georgia is now a competitive
status. It's not the deep red state that it was 20 years ago. It's a 52-48
state, red state, on a good day.
Joe Biden carried it for the first time since 1992 for a Democrat. And the
Democrats want it. They know what they can get if they take these two
seats. They tie the Senate at 50/50. Kamala Harris breaks any tie, and they
can do wherever they want--
ROVE: -- short of -- you don't even need to change the rules change. They
just need to pass legislation that falls under the budget reconciliation
They could pass a major takeover of the health care. They could pass
Medicare for all with 50 votes and Kamala Harris voting to break the tie.
So, you pass a big tax bill, as long as it's inside the budget resolution,
50 votes, and the vice president of the United States breaking the tie.
PAYNE: Sure. Sure.
ROVE: So, they're pouring all kinds of resources into it, and nobody
should think this race is going to be a runaway for either side.
It's going to be very competitive. I think the Republicans will win, but
it's going to be very close.
PAYNE: What will be -- I got 30 seconds -- though, the determining factor
for that victory?
ROVE: The quality of each side's ground game. How good are they at getting
out people who voted this fall to vote again or getting people who sat on
the sidelines this fall to get out and vote again?
And full disclosure, I'm a chairman of a national finance effort to help
the Republican candidates called the Georgia Battleground Fund.
PAYNE: Yes. Well, I know they're glad to have you, lucky to have you.
And so are we, Karl. Thank you very much. We really appreciate it.
All right, folks, I will be back here tomorrow.
For now, though, "The Five" is next.
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