Potential legal troubles loom for Comey, despite evading prosecution on leaks
This is a rush transcript from "Tucker Carlson Tonight," August 2, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
JASON CHAFFETZ, GUEST HOST: Welcome to this special edition of "Hannity: Justice in America."
I'm Jason Chaffetz, in tonight for Sean.
Breaking this week, we learned that fired FBI Director James Comey is in some serious hot water. According to a report from "The Hill's" John Solomon, Inspector General Michael Horowitz found that Comey lacked candor and leaked confidential government documents. James Comey was even recommended for prosecution but Solomon and FOX News are reporting he won't be charged, for now.
We saw a similar result a few months ago when a still unnamed FBI deputy assistant director was referred for criminal prosecution for purposely leaking sealed court documents. Yet, the Department of Justice refused to prosecute.
But while the disgraced former FBI director has escaped criminal charges for now, the Department of Justice's investigations into FISA abuse and the origins of the Russia witch hunt are still underway.
Yesterday on Twitter, Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows of North Carolina pointed out, quote: As the I.G. report on Comey approaches, we are getting the sound of silence. No Comey tweets. No softball interviews. Must be tougher when you get questioned by a Department of Justice inspector general. The truth is coming. His actions will come to light, and the verdict won't be pretty.
Unsurprisingly, the always indignant James Comey responded writing, quote, I love transparency. I just wait for the facts before I talk about them. I'm confident the results of all I.G. reports will show honest, public servants work hard to protect this country from a threat this president and his enablers won't acknowledge. And, at me next time.
James Comey may want to get off of his high horse on this one because as the ranking member of the House Intel Committee pointed out, Comey could be in serious trouble. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. DEVIN NUNES (D-CA): Look, I haven't disclosed who he referred criminally but I think one could guess that it's highly likely that we would name people who leaked classified information. So, they are not going to act on any of our referrals. Those have all been given to the U.S. attorney in Connecticut. My guess is the same holds true for the I.G. Everything is going to be given to the attorney in Connecticut. So if I was James Comey, I wouldn't be walking on the cornfields of Iowa yet running for president.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHAFFETZ: According to reports, one crucial piece of evidence surrounding the DOJ's investigation into FISA abuse will soon be available. That would be Bruce Ohr's 302s.
Joining us now to explain is FOX News contributor Sara Carter and the author of the upcoming book, this is going to be a good one, "Witch Hunt: The Story of the Greatest Mass Delusion in Political History", FOX News legal analyst, Gregg Jarrett.
Thank you both for joining us tonight.
Gregg, I want to start with you. You are in the studio with us in New York. What troubles with me as this is now two people in a row where the inspector general has recommended criminal prosecution and the Department of Justice is not prosecuting.
GREGG JARRETT, FOX NEWS LEGAL ANALYST: It's got to be frustrating for Horowitz and his team of lawyers because they presented two cases now. The first one, against a deputy assistant director to the FBI, it's a total slam-dunk case. And yet, the DOJ doesn't want to prosecute.
Now, he's got Comey who stole government documents, leaked them to the media, and to friends.
CHAFFETZ: He admitted that he leaked them.
JARRETT: He admitted it. And apparently, some of these are classified. So, that's a violation of the Espionage Act whether it's intentional or grossly negligent is what Hillary Clinton did, and I name in my book 600 individuals who did this and got prosecuted for it yet James Comey does not? I think it's a mistake.
However, I do sort of understand that if the prosecution is going to be made over all of this, you want to go with your best case and may be William Barr and the DOJ is waiting for the IG's criminal referral on FISA abuse which would include that and then we just saw on your screen, James Comey.
CHAFFETZ: Sara, James Comey is an out of the woods yet. I mean, there still is this I.G. report that more and probably, you have Durham who is pursuing things and couldn't bring up a number of charges along the way, correct?
SARA CARTER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Oh, absolutely. And I think it's not just frustrating to Horowitz, if we want to go back to this decision, not to prosecute Comey for leaking his classified memos. It's frustrating to the American people and I see that on Twitter. I see people responding like, is there a two tiered justice system? What's going on here?
I think we'll just need to take a deep breath. I am being very vigilant. I am being very cautious. I think Attorney General William Barr is going to do the right thing.
But I'm being mindful. And I think it's very important for the American people to do the same because John Durham is the man in charge here and he is putting together his case and he is working diligently, according to sources. But it's a very tight ship.
Nothing is leaking. We know that he's looking at all aspects of how Comey was involved in the beginning of the investigation into President Trump and Russia. He's looking at all of those machinations, everything that happened out over the very beginning of the investigation, and that's what's going to be important here.
And now that we know Judicial Watch is getting those documents, those 302s from Bruce Ohr and his interviews with the FBI agents, I think the American public will have a little more light on what was going on there and then that's I report that's coming out from Horowitz on Russia, that is going to be a big one.
CHAFFETZ: Yes, Gregg, let's talk about the 302s because the 302s are the summaries of the FBI's interviews along the way. What do we expect or what we think that these 302s could potentially tell us as they have interviews and discuss these things with Bruce Ohr?
JARRET: It's going to likely going to show that the FBI and the Department of Justice were both warned that this guy, Christopher Steele, had ponied up a document called a dossier. It was a fabrication.
He was not credible. He was not reliable. And yet, Comey and McCabe, and others stated to the FISA court that he was. They knew he wasn't.
In fact, they had fired him for leaking and lying. So, they used Bruce Ohr in an information laundering scheme. He was the conduit. They knew and that they couldn't go back to Christopher Steele that they had fired. I would break rules and regulations.
So it was a sleazy, slimy operation they used Ohr as a conduit. He would get information from Steele, feed it to his handler, his handler will give it to Peter Strzok, who would give it to McCabe, who would give it to Comey, and they were cleansing their fingerprints. They are dirty fingerprints off of the Steele dossier by using that guy, Bruce Ohr, as the conduit.
CHAFFETZ: Now, Sara, Bruce Ohr happens to be married to a person named Nellie Ohr and Fusion GPS, which I think I'd less than 20 something employees, employed this guys wife. And so, how do you see this playing out and what are the 302s from your reporting and your research going to show us about what Bruce Ohr was doing?
CARTER: Well, remember, Jason, Nellie Ohr was hired specifically for this. She was hired specifically because she's a Russia expert. Apparently, she is fluent in Russian. She was focused on the Trump campaign and any kinds of Russia contacts. So, that's what makes this so terrible.
And also the fact that Bruce Ohr really never reported that to the DOJ, even more importantly about Bruce Ohr. And I think a lot of people have them forgot about this, was that under pressure from Trey Gowdy, when he was questioning him behind closed doors, Bruce Ohr admitted that he had told people within the Department of Justice, particularly the criminal fraud division, which was then handed by Andrew Weissmann, which then became a part of the special counsel, the second -- the right-hand man, the second in charge next to Robert Mueller, all about this.
So there were three people at senior-level DOJ officials that actually knew about Bruce Ohr and his contacts with Christopher Steele, two of which would were working for the special counsel. So all of this is going to come out and Gregg is right on the money. The most important thing that those 302s, I believe, are going to reveal, is that he warned people that Christopher Steele was anti-Trump and that there was information that was not verifiable, and that this would look really bad.
And if that's the case, this is a potentially big criminal liability and problem for people in the FBI, particularly for Comey who signed off on the first FISA warrant.
CHAFFETZ: And remember, there were multiple FISA warrants going into the court and, Gregg, part of what I am really curious to see when they go through these 302s, first of all, hats off to Judicial Watch for having the legal capability and financial wherewithal to file these suits and pry open these documents and make them available. They make Congress just to look feckless. I mean, it really is.
And I'm the former chairman of the committee issuing subpoenas and they wouldn't respond to me, but Judicial Watch can go out and get this because they have the support of the court. Congress can't ever go to the court to actually get these things loosened up.
JARRETT: So, and it underscores how Christopher Wray of the FBI is sort of his twin brother of James Comey. He obstructed lawful subpoenas from people like you in Congress in order to cover up and hide incriminating information.
CHAFFETZ: Now, Sara, this took so much time because there was -- I mean, I'm sorry, but under Attorney General Jeff Sessions, we got nothing ever. There were no responses to this. It was only since Attorney General Barr came and the president said we had to release these documents and declassify them.
CARTER: That's right, Jason, because what was so difficult was this constant battle, right? This what Judicial Watch was so great at that is fighting them in the courts, because no matter which way anybody turned, the DOJ, the Department of Justice, and the FBI, were more concerned at that time about protecting themselves and their reputation and not doing what was right for the American people. And this is something that we have to come to terms with as a country.
The most important thing that we can do now, regardless of what is discovered, is to discover the truth. That's it. That's what the American people want, that's what the American people need, because we should not be a two-tiered system of justice.
CARTER: Where people like Hillary Clinton and others get a break and the rest of the American public have to pay a heavy price and a burden like Kristian Saucier who took pictures on board a nuclear sub and then was put in prison.
CHAFFETZ: Yes, yes.
CARTER: It's just not right.
CHAFFETZ: Well, listen --
CARTER: So I think right now, we are seeing something different.
CHAFFETZ: Gregg and Sara, thank you so much.
The first glimpse, by the way, that we are going to get to get to see when Durham is also looking at or at least I should say the next glimpse, should happen as soon as Monday when we expect the 302s from Bruce Ohr to be released. Don't you want to watch the show on Monday night when Sean will be back in the chair? I think we will have some interesting news.
But tonight, the Spygate controversy continues. Iowa's Senator Chuck Grassley, one of my favorites in the United States Senate, he says the Pentagon failed to meet his demand for documents on contracts with the FBI informant Stefan Halper. He is the shady Cambridge professor who is suspected of spying on members of the Trump campaign.
Joining us now for a reaction on this and of the news that James Comey won't be prosecuted, at least for now, are Republican Congressman Tom McClintock of California, and Andy Biggs, a congressman from Arizona.
I served with both of gentlemen in Congress while I was there and I think you both for joining us tonight.
When you got word through John Solomon's reporting and what FOX News has been able to report that James Comey would actually not be prosecuted, or held accountable for releasing and having classified information in a non- classified setting, Congressman Biggs, what was your reaction?
REP. ANDY BIGGS (R-AZ): Well, my first reaction is, this is the same thing we've seen prosecuted over and over again. In other words, he lied and he leaked classified information.
He not only lied and leaked classified information, he has admitted it, so -- that he did it for political purpose. So the culpable mental state is there. So, the elements of the crime are all obvious, so I'm banking that they think that they need to hold off on indicting Mr. Comey until the Horowitz report comes in and Mr. Durham's finishes in his investigation.
I believe that this is just a postponement of the inevitable for Mr. Comey.
CHAFFETZ: And, Congressman McClintock, when you heard the news and saw this information, what was your reaction?
REP. TOM MCCLINTOCK (R-CA): Well, it's obviously one of two things. It's either the same double standard that we've seen them play out in case after case, which are prior guests mentioned. Or, as Andy says, and I tend to agree with him, they have gotten much bigger fish to fry with James Comey and they don't want to get sidetracked into charges like this when they are much bigger issue is still afoot. And we'll find out as all of this unfolds and unravels.
CHAFFETZ: Well, and I hope that's the case. I'm kind of stuck on the fact of the inspector general, Michael Horowitz, issued a statement read on the fact that the inspector general put out this document talking about the deputy assistant director that he had unsealed -- that there was a sealed court documents and that the deputy assistant director of the FBI, we don't know the person's actual name because there are multiple people with that title, but they gave this information to a reporter and the Department of Justice had decided not to prosecute.
Congressman Biggs, how do we get to the point where there is an equal application of justice? Because I got to tell you, your ranking file person in the military or some other place or contractor who has classified information, guess what, they are going to be prosecuted and going to jail and that's the way it probably should be.
But here you have the deputy assistant director not prosecuted. I don't understand it and how is Congress going to hold the DOJ accountable for that?
BIGGS: Well, we have to hold them accountable. I mean -- but, you've seen what the people on judiciary concern. They wanted interview everybody tried to impeach President Trump, so they are not interested in this.
I am interested in this. I'll tell you why I'm interested, for the very reason you're talking about, I don't think it just ends at DOJ or with the FBI itself. I think this goes across DOD, we are saying that, that they don't want to give information either.
We are seeing a lot of agencies just choose to withhold information from Congress and Congress has got to hold people in contempt and, you know, but, right now, we are feckless.
You used the word feckless. I can't help but agree with you because you served there, Tom and I are there, I think -- I get frustrated at the stonewalling we get from the administrations that are of the same party and they redact documents and they will say it's for national security and then you've seen what I have where it becomes unredacted it was only because they were embarrassed at the corruption and the level of corruption and bureaucracy. It has nothing to do with national security. So we have to push forward on this.
CHAFFETZ: Yes, Congressman McClintock, what Andy Biggs is talking about was exactly right. I saw time after time almost on a daily basis things that were redacted because they were politically embarrassing. Not because they were actually true classifications.
But how do we get past this? How do we hold these people accountable? Because then when you do have somebody who is admitted in interviews on television saying I've leaked these documents on purpose because I wanted them to be out there in the media, where do we go from there?
MCCLINTOCK: Well, as you know, the most closely guarded secrets in the U.S. government are unclassified but embarrassing. But I think this whole thing is now unraveled to the point where it's taking on a life of its own. The facts are coming out.
I mean, the reason why Chuck Grassley is so insistent on getting the facts from the pentagon is at the same time it was giving a massive $400,000 contract to Stefan Halper, to write a report that investigative reporters are now calling of dubious value. The same time he was getting at payoff, he was spying on the Trump campaign.
So, things started to unravel. They take on a life of their own. The facts, they are true. And it will set our nation free from this whole Russian collusion nonsense and at the same time, those same facts may start putting behind bars and very high officials and our intelligence and justice agencies from the Obama administration.
The truth will out. I'm convinced of that. And as those facts come to light, they will down those responsible and hopefully, we will never see this kind of threat to our democracy again, a threat from within -- the use of the most terrifying powers that we give to our government, powers to destroy people's lives, turn for political purposes to intervene in election and to undermine the constitutionally elected president.
CHAFFETZ: Well, I'm glad these two are on top of it. These are two of our best serving in the United States Congress. So, gentlemen, I thank you.
BIGGS: Thanks, Jason.
CHAFFETZ: And as you talk about that Halper contract, let's remember, our government come out of your wallets, took more than $1 million and put it in his wallet. Congressman Grassley -- I mean, Senator Grassley, he wants to see those contracts. Senator Grassley better get those contracts because we coughed up a million dollars and he needs to see what was going on there and I think he and his staff will do a great job once he gets those documents.
Thank you again gentlemen for being here.
Coming up, why are 2020 Democrats suddenly attacking Obama? Spoiler alert, they think he's too conservative. We'll explain after the break. Don't go away.
CHAFFETZ: Welcome back to this HANNITY Special: Justice in America.
Wednesday night's Democratic debate showed just how radically liberal the Democratic party has become. Even former President Barack Obama was not liberal enough for some of the candidates. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Vice President Biden, I didn't hear your response when the issue came up of all those deportations. You are a vice president of the United States. I didn't hear whether you try to stop them or not, using your power and your influence in the White House.
JULIAN CASTRO (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If you elect me president, you're not electing me to follow. You're electing me to lead.
Mr. Vice President, it looks like one of us has learned the lessons of the past and one of us hasn't.
SEN. CORY BOOKER (D-NJ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Mr. Vice President, you can't have it both ways. You invoked President Obama more than anybody in this campaign. You can't do it when it's convenient and then dodge it when it's not.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHAFFETZ: Last night, President Trump brought up the bizarre debates during his massive rally in Cincinnati, Ohio. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I was watching the so-called debate last night.
And I also watched the night before that was long, long television. And the Democrats spent more time attacking Barack Obama then they did attacking me, practically.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
It's true. And this morning, that's all the fake news was talking about.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHAFFETZ: As only the president can say.
And Joe Biden who seems to be running on Obama's legacy said he was surprised by the left turning on one of their idols.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I must tell you, I was a little surprised at how much hate was coming about Barack -- about the president. I mean, I am proud to have served him and I'm out of out of the job he did. I don't think there's anything he has to apologize for and I think that, you know, it kind of surprised me, the degree of criticism.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHAFFETZ: Joining us now is American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp and former economic advisor to President Obama, Austan Goolsbee.
Gentlemen, thank you both for joining us.
Austan, is the road to the White House for the Democrats paved by who can be the hardest, toughest, and most liberal against Barack Obama? Is that where we are going?
AUSTAN GOOLSBEE, FORMER ECONOMIC ADVISER TO PRESIDENT OBAMA: I mean, I don't know what it says, but a hundred percent agree with President Trump. They were attacking Barack Obama more than they were attacking President Trump. I don't know what they were thinking, and all I can think is they were trying out different stuff.
You know, it's an early debate. They're going to try out various things, but the popularity of President Obama among Democratic voters, they should have checked their polls. I mean, that it's pretty high and they are going to get the vice president made the nomine if they continue that.
I think if the next debate or the next public thing, these people are going to be backing up just because they hear that truck. They're going to -- this was really dumb. They should not have done that.
CHAFFETZ: I agree with you. I agree with you and you agree with Donald Trump. I hope we caught all of this on tape, because we're going to run this at some point.
GOOLSBEE: Mark it down, mark this day.
CHAFFETZ: Matt, what was your read on the Democratic debate because they spent an awful lot of time beating up on Barack Obama?
MATT SCHLAPP, AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE UNION CHAIR: Let's get specific here for a minute. I was shocked and tweeted out after the debate that Obama has become a bit of an albatross just like the Clintons. It's kind of like going to unite the Clintons and the Obamas together, the fact that both of them aren't heralded as heroes anymore by the Democratic Party.
But specifically, calling Obama's policies of deporting illegals here who commit additional crimes, calling that racist, asking Joe Biden if he called out President Obama at the time for deporting illegals, President Obama deported more illegals than President Trump has, and they are calling that racist. He said Obamacare was immoral, didn't cover enough people. It was kind of like a poultry first step to get health care to the American people.
Obamacare is outrageously expensive and it has left millions of Americans with worst health insurance, but it's usually Republicans who were making the argument on Obamacare, not Democrats basically saying all these support for Obamacare over the course of the last decade was a mistake. So, when you look at the actual policies, criminal justice reform basically, they are saying he was, you know, immorally tough on inner-city black kids. It's amazing that this is coming from Democrats.
I think the Democrats have lost their heroes, Jason. There is not any previous president they can point to you and say this is our hero and their hero today unfortunately, are socialism and the leaders of socialism. I think it's a very sad thing for the country.
CHAFFETZ: Well, that's why Bernie Sanders right on top of the ticket, he's not even registered Democrat. He calls himself a Democratic socialist by definition.
But, Austan, I got to tell you, I voted again against -- when I was in Congress, I voted against the so-called Affordable Care Act and so did every other Republican. Democrats owned that thing --
GOOLSBEE: I remember, I remember you did.
CHAFFETZ: Yes, that was a good vote. I'm telling you, but the Democrats - -
GOOLSBEE: No, it wasn't.
CHAFFETZ: If you watch the first, you had to get back past 25 minutes just to get through the introduction but the next 20 to 25 minutes was all about how bad the Affordable Care Act is and how expensive it is.
GOOLSBEE: Yes, well, not exactly how expensive it is but they want to do more then what's in the Affordable Care Act. I mean, to disagree a bit with Matt and your vote, Jason, if you look at the Affordable Care Act in the polls now, it's got about 70 percent support among the American people and when President Trump attempted to repeal it and restore the stuff about pre-existing conditions, et cetera, that was massively unpopular and he couldn't even get his own --
CHAFFETZ: No, we got rid of the individual mandate was absolutely a necessary.
GOOLSBEE: Well, look --
GOOLSBEE: He was unable to get his own party to back him to vote to repeal it, and if the Democrats -- now, to some minds, in this debate, it was in all of the candidates. But there were definitely some prominent ones who were criticizing the Affordable Care Act.
SCHLAPP: This is important here, let me jump in here. This is very important.
Joe Biden who was the vice president, as you know, a man you served, he didn't at one point on this conversation about Obamacare, this huge argument of Obamacare, he never invoked the name Barack Obama. And he said he also agreed that it wasn't enough and they had to do much more.
Now, we were promised under Obamacare that if we spend these trillions of dollars that the American people would be covered and even though Trump was able to repeal the individual mandate, even up to that point, we all know that millions of Americans were left unprotected by the bill and it actually got worse health care, and couldn't keep their doctor or their plan.
And so, for Joe Biden to say that Obamacare didn't get it done is a major feat.
GOOLSBEE: According to the data from the Department of Health and Human Services, two thirds of that is not true. Two thirds of what you just said are not true.
SCHLAPP: No, no. That's not right.
GOOLSBEE: Millions more--
SCHLAPP: Be specific. Be specific, because you are right.
GOOLSBEE: Millions more people--
SCHLAPP: Be specific.
GOOLSBEE: Are you going to let me tell you what the Department of Health and Human Services--
GOOLSBEE: --data show or just keep interrupting? It shows that millions--
SCHLAPP: No tell me.
GOOLSBEE: --more people got coverage than had before.
CHAFFETZ: But Austan--
GOOLSBEE: And since Donald Trump's action--
CHAFFETZ: Hold on one second.
SCHLAPP: On Medicaid.
GOOLSBEE: --millions of people are losing their insurance.
CHAFFETZ: Austan and Matt, listen--
SCHLAPP: On Medicaid.
CHAFFETZ: --the reality is, during the Democratic debate they all beat the living tar out of the Affordable Care Act and when you talk about--
GOOLSBEE: No all - no--
CHAFFETZ: And when you talk about giving illegal immigrants--
SCHLAPP: Every single one of them--
CHAFFETZ: --free healthcare--
GOOLSBEE: Not every single one of them.
SCHLAPP: Every one of them want to give illegal immigrants
GOOLSBEE: --that's not correct.
SCHLAPP: --free healthcare. That is so fundamentally totally wrong.
GOOLSBEE: They didn't really totally support that.
CHAFFETZ: All right, last question--
GOOLSBEE: They did not all support that.
CHAFFETZ: Last question. Well, we'll watched the tape back where they all raised their hands there.
CHAFFETZ: But last question. Joe Biden, he's part of the past. He's been in Washington for 40 years. I've never met anybody who walked around said, we need more Washington, we need more bureaucracy, we need more government spending, all right. How does Joe Biden make his case at the same time they're all trying to distance themselves from Barack Obama? And it's got to be embarrassing that the President did not endorse Joe Biden.
GOOLSBEE: I agree with you. I agree with you that Joe Biden's challenge, A, is one he's got to tighten. He's got to get more disciplined. And, B, he's got to - the elections going to be about the future, so he can't just be about the past.
That said, if you look at the vote the Democratic voters who are the ones who are going to decide who's going to be the nominee, they massively support Barack Obama. So my prediction - but, A, my estimation is that's why Joe Biden is leading by a large amount.
And, B, if other candidates continue to push the line that Barack Obama is not enough, they're flying in the face of - you saw Pew Research interviewed all Americans, "Who was the best President of their lifetime?" Barack Obama's #1.
CHAFFETZ: Yes. I didn't vote on that poll. Matt - last word for Matt. Last word for Matt.
SCHLAPP: Yes. The reason why Joe Biden - and I found myself rooting for him, Austan. I mean, I think, I agree it's like he could be better than this, I think. But the reason why he's done so well in these polls is really an astounding support from African-American voters.
These are voters that Cory Booker, Kamala Harris and others have not been able to grab. But the question is will he continue to get the support from African-American voters. If he jumps on board like all these candidates have, the idea that we should decriminalize crossings at the border, that we should give free health care to those who come to this country illegally.
And if he keeps this policy that he's had a criminal justice reform that has been punitive in these inner cities with these young kids. And I'd say that's a real question, if you can hold on to the African-American support, I agree, he can still get this nomination. But I think that he's in a perilous course with these radical policies.
CHAFFETZ: Gentlemen, thank you so much. Austan, Matt I appreciate you joining us. Coming up on this special edition of Hannity Rush, Limbaugh weighs in on the human crisis at America's biggest most liberal cities, stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: For decades these communities have been run exclusively by Democrat politicians and it's been total one party control of the inner cities.
The Democrat record is one of neglect and corruption and decay - total decay. The Democrats have taxed and regulated jobs and opportunity out of these cities and out of existence. They've squeezed the blood out of them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHAFFETZ: That was President Trump last night highlighting the failures of Democratic leadership in places like Baltimore. And it's not just Baltimore, liberal cities across America are grappling with rising homelessness, violent crime and a full-blown public health crisis.
Listen to Rush Limbaugh talking about the destructive Democratic agenda to Sean last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RUSH LIMBAUGH, HOST, "THE RUSH LIMBAUGH SHOW": They look out over this landscape, they see nothing but suffering. They don't see anybody other than in pain, victims of this victims of that. There isn't anything they talk about that involves improving life. They talk about jobs not careers.
They do not offer anybody anything uplifting and they haven't created a group of voters that even thinks uplifting. Their voter group is mired in all kinds of misery, injustice, to the point they're covering up George Washington in murals in San Francisco rather than cleaning the human feces off the streets out there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHAFFETZ: That's right. Joining me now for reaction is Baltimore activists and GOP strategist Kimberly Klacik; along with the author of the book "Still Winning", Fox News Contributor and Washington Times columnist, Charlie Hurt.
Kimberly I want to go to you first. You your heart is dear and near to Baltimore. Since the president has drawn attention, particularly to Baltimore, what's been happening there in Maryland?
KIMBERLY KLACIK, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Well, it looks to me that everyone has started to go to work. First time in a long time Congressman Elijah Cummings tweeted out a picture of him at a senior home in his district. So he's actually getting out there and talking to his constituents. Councilman President Brandon Scott proposed to do more Town Hall meetings and get out there and talk to constituents and go door-to-door.
So I saw today - I was there today and I saw a city dump trucks, I saw the city had their landscapers out there, kind of looking at the place and assessing it and trying to figure out how to start cleaning it up. So Trump, he tweets and a lot of people were upset, but guess what, he tweeted and now they're getting to work. So he should probably tweet more often.
CHAFFETZ: Charlie, as you see this situation unfolding in Baltimore what's your reaction to it?
CHARLES HURT, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, the first thing, of course, is - just the sadness how tragic it is for literally for five decades now Democrat politicians have been in charge of places like Baltimore and Detroit, where I lived and worked for a number of years. And it's their policies that are that are on display in live action every single day.
And, of course, they are peddling all kinds of false promises about trying to fix things, about lifting people up, and of course none of it comes to anything. And the net result is this this inhuman squalor, this poverty, this violent crime that nobody in America should have to endure.
Yet it rains in places like Detroit and Baltimore and Democrats just sit back and they think well you know we don't need to worry about these voters, they're never going to go to anybody else. And, of course, Republicans stupidly have ignored the problem as well, largely because they're afraid of getting involved in nasty arguments about this stuff.
But Donald Trump doesn't care. And if people are going to call in racist for calling out the squalor that Elijah Cummings has left in his district, he doesn't care. He cares more about those people. And the fact that it is absolutely inhumane that people live in these kind of conditions in a country as great as America.
CHAFFETZ: Yes. I mean, that's something that Bernie Sanders even called out when he was there. Now Kimberly when you have people highlight the plight of these major inner cities, what often times what you hear is racism, racism, racism.
How somebody who's - I'm not African-American and if I were to talk about it, how - I mean, you can't claim racism every single time we point a problem in one of these cities. How do we deal with that?
KLACIK: No, you can't. But, unfortunately, I got the same thing. And I am African-American. I feel like they have nothing else to say. They have nothing else to point to, because as far as racism you can't prove it or disprove it, right. So they always claim that. But it's not racism at all. I think it's racism when you do nothing about it.
I mean, face it, these constituents, they live in impoverished areas, so they can't donate to the campaign. They don't have an area where it's a tourist attraction. So none of these areas make money for the city, and that's what all these Democrats are about. They're about making money for themselves and it's sad.
CHAFFETZ: No, and if the only solution is more government handouts. And Charlie, one of the things that I think the Republicans have to do are offer real solutions. I applaud Donald Trump for pointing it out, OK. But now that how do we pivot and actually offer solutions in contrast to Democrats.
And I hope the President and the rest of us take the fight to these big cities in compare and contrast democratic solutions, which haven't worked over the last several decades, versus Republican solutions.
HURT: Well, I think, that - obviously, there are free market ideas. There are lot of smart, free market ideas talking about freedom and things like that I think that Republicans do have to offer to people who live in places like Baltimore and nothing of course is more important than talking about education.
But the first step, I think, Jason, is that Republicans have to stick the chest out and just say to heck with it. You can use these calumnies against us and call us racist, but actually we care, and we're going to try to offer our solutions. And just sort of bowl right on through and do their best.
But I do think it's not about racism. For Democrats it's about power. And they need these constituents, these voters, in order for these Democrats to stay in power. And if they lose those people, then the Democrats lose power and I think that's the most important part.
I wish people in Baltimore understood that if they concentrated on this and decided to do something and punish Democrats, they could actually take power away from Democrats. And would be probably be a very smart thing and it might it might kind of wise Democrats up a little bit about this. And they'll stop taking people for granted.
CHAFFETZ: Kimberly and Charlie, we appreciate it. I really do believe you have to talk about policing, you've got to talk about schools and you got to talk about the breakdown of the family.
Because if you don't talk about those three things in a very candid way, you will never ever solve this problem and I hope that discussion continues on America. Thank you both for joining us tonight.
Major breaking news on multiple fronts straight ahead on this "Justice in America" special. Eight more Covington kids are filing lawsuits for defamation, good for them. And Trump's big victory for rapper A$AP Rocky, you're going to - want to hear that story. I know you follow A$AP Rocky, don't - you won't admit it in public, but I know you do and you want to hear that story. Stay tuned for it.
CHAFFETZ: Welcome back to this special edition of Hannity "Justice in America". You remember the Covington Catholic students slammed by the left and mainstream media for wearing MAGA hats. Well, they're not finished fighting back yet.
Jonathan Hunt is live from our West Coast newsroom with the latest in that case. Plus more details surrounding American rapper A$AP Rocky, who's been released from Swedish jail with the help of President Trump. Jonathan?
JONATHAN HUNT, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Jason, we'll start tonight with the Covington students, eight of them filing this libel lawsuit. They are not named, simply referred to as the quote "Covington boys"
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HUNT: who were involved in the well-known encounter with Nathan Phillips, a Native American on the mall in Washington DC in January.
Phillips played a drum and sang as Covington student Nicholas Sandmann and his classmates gathered around. The students were criticized by some as being aggressive and described as quote "MAGA hat wearing teens".
Among those named in the new lawsuit is having libeled the boys, the comedian and actress Kathy Griffin; Ana Navarro, a Republican strategist, and frequent CNN contributor; Maggie Haberman, a New York Times reporter and a Senator Elizabeth Warren.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HUNT: Last week a similar lawsuit brought by Nicholas Sandmann against the Washington Post for defamation was dismissed by a federal judge.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
In that other news you mentioned, A$AP Rocky has been freed from a Swedish jail and allowed to leave the country, as a judge there considers a verdict in the assault case against the rapper and members of his entourage who were accused of beating 19 year old Mustafa Jafari in a clash in Central Stockholm seen here in video obtained by TMZ.
ASAP Rocky, real name Rakim Mayers, thanked his supporters via Instagram saying it has been a quote "A very difficult and a humbling experience".
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HUNT: Among those supporters, President Trump who tweeted "Get home ASAP A$AP ", very clever. I'm sure the sounds of A$AP forever are booming around the walls of the Oval Office tonight, Jason.
CHAFFETZ: Jonathan, thank you. And it's a A$AP it's not A-S-A-P, I learned just for all of those rapper fans out there. Joining us for more reaction to tonight's top legal stories, attorney and Fox News Contributor, Emily Compagno; and criminal defense attorney, Jonna Spilbor, who both are joining us here in studio. Thanks to both.
I want to talk first about A$AP, because I got to tell you, President Trump put the full weight of the White House behind this. You have Robert O'Brien who's a special emissary there. Who actually is - actually went to Sweden and helped secure his release. But for the President to put all the weight in there and make this happen, Emily, really - it actually worked.
EMILY COMPAGNO, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Right. And I think it's an indication that he's the leader of all of us. It doesn't matter who everyone is voting for. He's still everyone's President.
I want to point out for viewers to small things. Number one, that the response by the Prosecutor General of Sweden, however, was less than, shall we say, negotiating style when he responded essentially, "Look, no one has the power to influence or even to try not even me. So thanks, but no thanks."
That being said, the fact that A$AP Rocky has been released prior to his August 14th decision date means that he will likely not serve any jail time even the six months that the prosecutor requested.
CHAFFETZ: And Jonna they do things different in Sweden than they do in the United States.
JONNA SPILBOR, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes. They do things much differently. Here these type of case this low-level brawl in the street. People would get slapped on the wrist and go have a drink afterwards. Here A$AP Rocky was locked up for a month and then all of a sudden the judge is like, "Ah, you can go home now. You can stick a fork in this case, because it's done".
CHAFFETZ: It is done. All right, let's go to the Covington case, because these kids are not stopping their fight. They're going to take the fight on. How is this different than the other lawsuit that they put in place that was tossed out?
COMPAGNO: Four main differences that the attorneys say. Number one, they're suing individuals, not the institutions. And under Kentucky State law this is an easier case for them to make.
Number two, the individuals that they are suing are high-profile, right. They really had argued a significant impact on that social media frenzy. And the third thing is the fact that these are the group, not individuals on the plaintiffs end. That was something that the judge mentioned in the original case.
Fourth and final thing, unlike the 250 million that the original suit was by Sandmann, these kids here are only suing for the cost of the University of Kentucky tuition, no more than $50,000 each.
CHAFFETZ: Do you think they have a better case now than they did in the first lawsuit?
SPILBOR: I think sometimes you just have to punch back. And this is probably going to be an uphill battle based on its - look, it's the same essential facts as the case that the federal judge dismissed. However, it's no fun getting sued.
So the kids are really sending a message, like, you cannot get away with making these kind of disparaging remarks to satisfy your agenda against the President of United States and use teens to do it. You can't do it. I like the message.
CHAFFETZ: I think it is the right message. Now some people apologize. Like SE Cupp, she apologized right away and said she jumped to conclusion. But these people, they never did apologize and set the record straight.
COMPAGNO: Which was a point that was underlined in this particular suit that they've filed. They said, look, every single one of these refused to retract and they included examples in contrast by those high-profile figures who did, in fact, retract and apologized for the initial statements.
CHAFFETZ: Now with Senator Warren, she hasn't issued any sort of retraction. Do you think a judge is going to look differently on a Member of Congress than they would say a celebrity or a newspaper?
SPILBOR: You know, not really. But I do think a Member of Congress is going to try to use this lawsuit to better her position in the Democratic Party. We'll see. Although, that's what really got her in trouble to begin with, so if she's smart, everybody will retract, everybody will apologize and let these kids live a life.
CHAFFETZ: No, they jump to conclusions. They went after teens without actually knowing the real story and it was so fundamentally wrong. Thank you both for joining us tonight. I really do appreciate it.
Stay with us as this special edition of Hannity continues right after the break. We got good stuff for you. Thank you.
CHAFFETZ: Welcome back to this special edition of "Hannity: Justice in America". That's all the time we have left this evening. Now if you liked tonight's show I really think you'll like my new book "Power Grab: The Liberal Scheme to Undermine Trump, the GOP and our Republic", it's available for pre-order now.
Democrats have been trying to invalidate the last election and they are going to do everything they can to win the next election and they're not necessarily going to play by the rules. That's what the book is about. So please get it, "Power Grab".
As always thanks for joining us. Sean will be back in the chair, Monday.
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