This is a rush transcript from "The Five," April 12, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: Hello everyone. I'm Eric Bolling along with Kimberly Guilfoyle, Juan Williams, Dana Perino and Greg Gutfeld. It's 5:00 in New York City and this is "The Five."
Moments ago, President Trump wrapped up a news conference with the NATO secretary general at the White House addressing the crisis in Syria and stepping up pressure on Russia to abandon its support for Bashar al-Assad. Just hours before his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met face-to-face with Vladimir Putin in Moscow. More on that in a moment.
The U.N. Security Council today also tried to condemn Syria's attack on its own people today but the vote failed because one permanent member on the council vetoed the resolution. Remember, it takes only one permanent member to veto the vote. So who vetoed the effort to sanction Assad? It was Russia. President Trump stood by his decision to strike Syria last week after Assad gassed his own people.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: When you get into the gasses, especially that form, it's vicious and violent and everybody in this room saw it all too many times over the last three or four days. Young children dying, babies dying, fathers holding children in their arms that were dead, dead children. There can't be a worse sight and it shouldn't be allowed. That's a butcher. That's a butcher. So, I felt we had to do something about it. I have absolutely no doubt we did the right thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLLING: President Trump also addressed the escalating tensions with Moscow.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Right now we're not getting along with Russia at all. We may be at an all-time low in terms of relationship with Russia. This is built for a long period of time, but we're going to see what happens. I'll also see about Putin over a period of time.
It would be a fantastic thing if we got along with Putin and if we got along with Russia. And that could happen and it may not happen or maybe just the opposite. I would love to be able to get along with everybody. Right now the world is a mess, but I think by the time we finish, I think it's going to be a lot better place to live.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLLING: Alright KG, a lot coming out of -- a lot of foreign policy coming out of that NATO address or little press conference there. He called Assad a butcher -- that's the president -- and also said that we're an all-time low in relations with Russia.
KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE, CO-HOST: Well again, he's being very transparent and plain speaking and I think the American people prefer to hear the truth and sort of be a part of what's going on especially on that geopolitical area. This is something that's been the subject of much dialogue and theorizing over an extended period of time including during the Obama administration.
And now he's calling it like he sees it. He says that Assad is a butcher. He's right. This guy is an animal. He's right. And he's also seeing very clearly that it is a complicated relationship with Russia that we have. It's not even that easy to try to just get along with people even if you have some common interests because there are so many different things going on in the world.
You know, with Ukraine. We've got a complicated mess there. In the Middle East, in Syria. Russia's relationship with Iran. So how does the United States fit into that, you know, puzzle piece in terms of trying to create cooperative partnerships with people that in many instances are playing for the wrong team and playing with our adverse enemies.
BOLLING: Greg, what signal or symbolism is it that Russia, one of the five permanent Security Council members vetoed the sanction for Assad? Now what message are they sending.
GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: That they will never change, like we keep talking about trying to normalize with Russia. This is normal relation with Russia. The one thing that -- this is why the strike in Syria was a good thing because it really was first rung material -- it's the minimum wage of responses. We hit only one facility. So there's all this room to move up. So we can now -- like this actually -- we may have to do it again. But the next step may be two facilities or more of Assad's military.
But there's enough room so that we can keep actually responding without it turning into something ugly and testing Putin instead of Putin testing the reverse. I agree with Kimberly. The best thing, the most refreshing thing that you see out of both Trump and Rex or as I call them together, T-Rex, the bluntness of the language is refreshing. It's just kind of nice that you kind of hear this stuff. It doesn't sound academic.
We went through eight years of academic language. We walked away going what just happened? Here you know what is happening because they're telling you.
BOLLING: Dana, there was another little innuendo in that U.N. vote, in the Security Council vote. So Russia said no. They vetoed the sanction but China, interestingly, abstained from the vote meaning they didn't vote no. I mean, they have a whole situation going on between them and North Korea right now going on. So maybe they condone some sort of action by the U.S. Is that a fair assessment?
DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: Well I think that that take -- I think that the meeting that President Trump had last week with the president of China was probably more productive than -- like there were concrete things that they could say, but apparently -- by the president's read-out when he told the president of China that look, I just want to let you know over this chocolate cake that we just did this and China said --
GUTFELD: They hacked the chocolate cake.
PERINO: Amazing. Beautiful. And apparently the Chinese president said, I understand why you did it. That doesn't mean he's condoning it. It's like he understands and I think an abstention is actually quite pretty good progress from that standpoint. I also think that the power of journalism cannot be underestimated.
What President Trump was talking about there in the beginning of the sound bite were all of the pictures that moved him so much. The only way that you actually know what's going on the ground is that if you have journalists who are brave enough to go and get that information. That is not fake news. It is absolutely real and we really owe them a debt of gratitude for being willing to be there and cover that story. For as heartbreaking as it is, we need to see the pictures.
BOLLING: Juan, do you want to grade the president and the administration on a pretty heavy foreign policy day today?
JUAN WILLIAMS, CO-HOST: Well, I thought the most newsy thing that came out of it was when the president said we are not going into Syria and he made it very clear. So to me this was an important step because I think he has to maintain political support here at home. Republicans have supported him in terms of the air strikes, but the question is, what about going forward? And the polls indicate most people don't.
And when it comes to the crying children, you know, the question I think in terms of the rationale for this military action is, what about the fact that you have continued attacks in Syria with conventional weapons, in fact, flying off of the same airstrip that we bombed. I mean, what a thumb in the eye that is to President Trump.
So, the question is what are you going to do now and what about hot spots elsewhere in the world and what about the fact that those children when they're fleeing are treated, you know, with some degree of contempt in terms of our refugee policy.
BOLLING: Incomplete? Not A, B, C or -- incomplete?
GUILFOYLE: He's abstaining like China.
WILLIAMS: No, I don't abstain. I want a policy. I'd like to know what the Trump doctrine with regard to Syria. Remember he said to President Obama, don't do it. Don't do it. So now he's president. He's done it, and there are lots of people including Democrats from Pelosi to Hillary Clinton who say it was the right thing to do.
But people want to know where we go from here. What's the meaning? That's why, let's say it's actually important news that he said today, we, the United States, not going into Syria.
BOLLING: Alright, let's talk about this. Earlier we mentioned, I'm sorry, Rex Tillerson met with Russian president Vladimir Putin as tensions rise between the two countries. They apparently met for two hours or so along with Tillerson's Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov. One thing was made clear. Again, as President Trump said as well, relations with Russia are at an all-time low.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REX TILLERSON, SECRETARY OF STATE: I've expressed the view the current state of U.S.-Russia relations is at a low point. There's a low level of trust between our two countries. The world's two foremost nuclear powers cannot have this kind of relationship. The course of the past two years, a number of reciprocal actions have been taken to demonstrate the dissatisfaction each country has with the other.
We need to attempt to put an end to this steady degradation which is doing nothing to restore the trust between our two countries or can make progress on the issues of the greatest importance to both of us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLLING: So Greg, after a two-hour meeting with Putin he comes out and says we're at an all-time low in relations.
GUTFELD: But you know, first of all, you got to compare briefing rooms. Like, how grim is that room compared to ours? I mean it actually reminds you of a cross between, you know, a DMV and a military panel that's judging parades. It's just so sad. There's no water there for anybody. It's really bad.
GUILFOYLE: Or vodka.
GUTFELD: But I have to say, Tillerson, I like -- this is not Tillerson's first plate of caviar. This is not a date arranged by match.com. He's been through this. His face is stonier than Brezhnev. He's out-Russianing the Russians.
I'm a 52-year-old man and I'm convinced that Tillerson could send me to my room without dinner. You know? That voice seems -- look, I don't think like -- what was the guy's name? Lavrov? He's sitting there going through the history of what's happened before.
He's basically saying America, don't do anything. You'll just make things worse while they make it worse. He didn't even -- I don't even think he took it seriously. Tillerson just went straight ahead and I think he had the right tone and the right seriousness in that grim room.
BOLLING: Dana, Chris Wallace described Lavrov as being very firm, very stern and maybe out press conference.
PERINO: Well, he said it was very aggressive. I mean that's just a tactic for Lavrov. What I liked about what Tillerson did is he said there's this low level of trust and not on camera, but he said the reason he needed to go -- we needed to at least define the areas of disagreement.
To me, that's how a CEO of a major company would approach a problem, which is to say, OK, let's figure out what are the issues that we actually have on the table and figure out what they are so that it -- at least if we can agree with the Russians, these are areas of disagreement, then there's at least a baseline to go from.
I also know that he -- when during his confirmation hearing, he was praised for being somebody who can bring people together and try to negotiate and - - not a deal maker but one of the example was the Boy Scouts in that big controversy that they had a few years ago.
He was the chairman of the board. That was a pro bono work that he did and he was able to keep all of that together. And people involved in that said that they've never seen anybody so good at figuring out what the problem was and then figuring out a way to bring it to resolution, in a very calm way like Greg was saying.
BOLLING: Juan, can you give President Trump credit for picking what appears to be the right guy for Secretary of State?
WILLIAMS: Wow. I can't.
BOLLING: Not even that.
GUILFOYLE: You knew the answer to that.
PERINO: Well dissing (ph) the press pool was not a good idea.
WILLIAMS: I think the whole relationship that he has with the press has been very difficult. He does not communicate well. Nobody knows what's going on or the people at the State Department feel like they're being held at arm's length. And of course that's difficult. So that means he's not doing a good job running the department.
GUTFELD: But Juan, can I ask you, what -- I would rather him have a stronger relationship with our adversaries. I'd worry less about a relationship with the press, right? I mean isn't one more important than the other?
WILLIAMS: I think it is all part of the deal. If you're Secretary of State, you are a public figure and part of it is selling American foreign policy, not only here at home but importantly overseas. So I think if you're asking about today, I think everybody says good, stand up to Lavrov, stand up to Putin, right?
And at home, President Trump said they are the ones that have backing that monster in Syria and they're making a mistake. So I imagine he's conveying the president's message. I agree with that message. I feel it in my heart so I'm all for it. I just want to know what they're doing and it seems to me like Tillerson --
GUILFOYLE: But I think they're telling you.
WILLIAMS: -- is unfamiliar with this territory.
BOLLING: But do they need to? Do they need to even tell us? You know what, I agree with Greg. I'd rather have them fix it and tell us --
GUILOYLE: Sure, but I think --
BOLLING: -- later how they did.
GUILFOYLE: -- you're getting both. I think they are telling us. I think there is a transparency and they're being open. And listen, I'm not disappointed if, you know, Tillerson is not going to give me like flowery rhetoric to sing me to sleep at night. No problem.
I'd rather have steely determination and focus and an understanding of the issues. You can work on it like based from people skills later. Get it done. He went in there and he took it straight to Putin and he brought up Assad and they talked about this a man who we eventually prosecuted for war crimes -- that the reign of the Assad family is coming to an end full stop.
He brought up the Ukraine as well. So, I have zero problem with that. That's a man that knows the opponent across the table, knows what they're capable of and is willing to meet it head on. He didn't pull back at all. And that's why the relationship right now with Russia and the United States is referenced by the president of the United States is at an all-time low because we got in their face. It's enough already.
GUTFELD: Do you know what the best part about is, could you imagine Tillerson ever bringing James Taylor along?
GUTFELD: I mean that's what we're talking about. What a change.
BOLLING: How about this? Can you imagine Putin and Rex Tillerson staring each other down?
GUTFELD: Yes, I do.
BOLLING: That's an icy room. And by the way, Sergey Lavrov earlier prior to that press conference said that the U.S. action in Syria was - they called it illegal.
PERINO: Putin would need to stand on a box.
GUTFELD: So would I.
GUILFOYLE: Well, and they still want to blame extremists. They're still hiding behind this, you know, phony story that oh, well maybe it was someone else, and poor Assad because he's so innocent he was being framed.
BOLLING: We got to go. Much more to come on "The Five." Ahead, hear the president tear apart Susan Rice's shady explanation for the unmasking of his former national security adviser, that's next.
PERINO: A big new development today on the Trump team surveillance controversy. According to the Washington Post, one of the president's former campaign advisors was monitored by U.S. intelligence. The FBI reportedly obtained a FISA warrant to monitor the communications of Carter Page to determine whether he was acting as a Russian agent. More on that in a moment, but first, here was the president this morning on the unmasking of some of his aides on the request of former national security advisor Susan Rice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: When you look at Susan Rice and say what's going on, and so many people are coming up to me and apologizing. They say, you know, you were right when you said that. Perhaps I didn't know how right I was because nobody knew the extent of it.
MARIA BARTIROMO, HOST, "MORNINGS WITH MARIA"/FBN: Was that what you were referring to Susan Rice?
TRUMP: Sure if we're talking about surveillance. It was "wiretapped."
BARTIROMO: She said she didn't do it for political reasons. Susan Rice tried --
TRUMP: Does anybody really believe that? Nobody believes that. Even the people that try to protect her in the news media, it's such a big story and I'm sure it will continue forward. But what they did is horrible.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PERINO: Kimberly, the susan rice aspect is something that we have covered for about the past ten days. When the Congress gets back, I assume that they are probably going to call her in to testify and I assume that she will. In addition, last night we found out in a story that broke on "The Washington Post," that there was a FISA warrant for Carter Page.
In addition to that, apparently bipartisan members of the committees, the House and the Senate side have looked at the documents that Representative Nunea saw and saying that there was nothing illegal don. So, at this point where are we? Square one?
GUILFOYLE: In hopscotch -- try to jump to the second. You know, it's obviously a very important story and you want -- as Americans, all of us should want to make sure that our privacy interests are protected and that there is (INAUDIBLE) surveillance by government agencies and then further revelation of American citizens, that is supposed to be foreign actors or foreign agents that are monitored. That is a very clear distinction.
Now, as a lawyer, I know it's very difficult to prove intent to say what was Susan Rice's -- what was her intention in unmasking that information and those names fixing (ph) intelligence agencies. Why when they hadn't found good cause or justification or probable cause to unmask -- that they had information in their possession that would warrant the unmasking of those American citizens. They didn't make that determination.
She came to a different conclusion, so one of the reasons could be because she did it for, you know, political reasons. Do you think she's going to admit that to anybody if in fact that were the case? No. But nevertheless, there has to be an investigation to prevent these types of abuses from going forward in the future by either side, whatever your partisan, you know, divide or who you play for.
PERINO: Juan, what about the breaking news that broke overnight that the FISA warrant was for Carter Page. The White House, the campaign have said, oh well, he was like -- we hardly even knew him. They said that he never met with President Trump which I think is believable. But he was announced as an official advisor and one of the things he was to advise on was Russia and Europe, and the government had been watching him since 2013. What do you make of that?
WILLIAMS: Well, I mean there's also the case that the FISA warrant was renewed. So, I saw a little bit of Catherine Herridge talking with Carter Page today on Fox, and he said, well, it might be based on weak evidence. Well gee, if it was renewed, wow, those judges are so dumb.
But I mean it's unbelievable. Something's going on here. And what struck me with the Susan Rice part, is I think there are lots of people who, going back to Benghazi, they just sort of making (ph) her into their whipping boy. But you know the fact is s that I'm reading today, in "The Hill." Mike Hayden, former CIA director, a republican, saying it's not only not a smoking gun, everything she did basically was routine.
That's what you should be doing if you're national security adviser in terms of asking people above you in the intelligence agencies who is this because you want to know about the level of threat it constitutes to the U.S. interests. And that's what she was doing.
PERINO: Eric, can the White House both distance themselves from Carter Page but then also use the surveillance of Carter Page as proof that there was surveillance and that it was inappropriate?
BOLLING: I'm not even sure it was inappropriate, the surveillance of Carter Page. It may or may not be. Here's the way it looks to me and we've been following this quite a bit, is that U.S. citizens tied to some foreign entity with questionable dealings, so you go to the FISA court, you get your warrant and you do what you're supposed to do.
Now, they're legal. In fact, perfectly legal. Unmasking by Susan Rice, not illegal, but certainly political because there's no other reason to do it for Susan Rice --
WILLIAMS: It was after the election.
BOLLING: But there is still no other reason for her to do it at all other than for political reasons. It wasn't concern --
WILLIAMS: It was her job as national security adviser
BOLLING: It wasn't national security. There was no security threats.
WILLIAMS: That's what she sensed (ph).
BOLLING: No, no, the CIA, the FBI and the intel community can do that and they chose not to do it. She did it for political reasons. One more, leaking of General Flynn's name, there's the illegal act and they still need to find out where it goes.
And one more, are there others to follow? I've said this for a couple weeks now and I'm just waiting to hear. There's going to be other names that we know about and the only reason why we know about these names is because of the illegal leaking of the unmasked -- maybe legal unmasking of the names.
PERINO: But there was another name sort of - somewhat related today, Greg. The Associated Press reported that Paul Manafort, who was the campaign chairman that left late July, that he will retroactively register as a foreign agent, which is something that if you're going to do work on behalf of a foreign government, you are supposed to do that. I guess you get a little bit of a pass. You can do it retroactively. Maybe you have to pay a fine.
GUTFEDL: Is that story in the B-block?
PERINO: Well, I just follow the news. Sorry.
GUILFOYLE: Oh, my gosh.
GUTFELD: I want to respond to Juan because this is the second time he's mentioned Susan Rice as a whipping boy. She blamed a terror attack on a video. She has no credibility. She should blame the surveillance story on a re-run of "The Wire." How ironic her name is rice yet she offers no grain of truth.
Now, for a reporter interviewing Donald Trump, like Maria, it's like shopping at "Whole Foods," you go in expecting to get maybe some pasta and maybe some artisanal pickles. You leave with three bags of groceries because he's constantly delivering. It's like the greatest thing -- we get blocks and blocks of information every time he's interviewed. He's the best gift for a reporter.
WILLIAMS: Yes, but I think it's like empty calories
GUTFELD: Is it really?
WILLIAMS: Oh, yes.
GUILFOYLE: You seem to have quite a bit to feast on --
PERINO: We have a lot to chew on that's for sure. Ahead, an update from the president on the wall he's trying to get built at our southern border and a progress report on his other efforts to keep illegals out, next.
GUILFOYLE: Welcome back to "The Five." It is the new era for controlling illegal immigration in America. The Trump era. Our attorney general delivered that certain message down at the border yesterday and the president delivered this update on his plans for a big beautiful wall.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Somebody said oh, Trump's not going to build a wall. I'm going to build the wall 100 percent. In fact we have hundreds of bidders. We have many, many designs. I've seen ten of the top but I want to see more. And what I'm doing is I said to our very great secretary, he's really doing a great job, General Kelly, because you see the numbers they're down 68 percent. Nobody has ever seen numbers. It's like a record. In fact, people are not even trying to get through anymore because they know they can't.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GUILFOYLE: OK, so that is the president again echoing his message that he had from the campaign, Eric, about building the wall. He's essentially doubled down. He's taken 10 bids, some of them he said very good, he'd like to take some more. So, he does seems pretty, you know, specific in terms of his resolve to get this done.
BOLLING: I'm doing the math on this. By the way, that wall is going to get -- that wall will be -- there will be a wall, and it will likely be beautiful, and guess who's going to pay for it? Mexico. They'll figure out a way.
I'm just thinking about the timing. I mean, they're taking bids now. What is this, April, what, 12th?
BOLLING: I don't know. Put a shovel in the ground by Fourth of July. Might be a nice weekend. Very sunny, you know, along the border. Stick the shovel in the ground Fourth of July.
GUILFOYLE: Eric Bolling, ladies and gentlemen, with his unbridled enthusiasm.
OK, so Greg, you talked about that Trump is the wall.
GUTFELD: Yes, he is the wall. But first, I want to talk. There was one plan to cover the wall with solar panels. I don't know if you saw that. So we're going to keep people out who want to work with a product that doesn't.
GUTFELD: Joke, America. We need a strong border.
GUILFOYLE: No, the solar panels are a problem. Remember, I told you in college, and the solar panels -- no shower.
GUTFELD: To your point -- to your point, though, Trump is the wall. And the fact that the media is now calling Jeff Sessions' plan horrifying, it bolsters that theory that it's just the plan that scares people off. Perception is the perspiration. It's doing the work.
When a burglar has a choice between two homes, one with a pit bull, one without, which house are they going to choose? We now have a pit bull in the White House. So people are just -- by perception, not perspiration, people are not coming in, because they're going, like, "They're going to send me back. Maybe I'm just going to wait."
GUILFOYLE: We should send pit bulls down to the wall.
GUTFELD: The actual musical artist.
GUTFELD: Quite -- quite a performer, I'm told.
GUILFOYLE: This is true.
OK, so Dana, what do you make of the president's messaging here? And it seems to be that he's just saying, "OK."
PERINO: He's really strong on this one. Right. He's been very consistent.
But today, in one day, you had him walk back, take different positions. He -- and he said himself that he had said NATO was obsolete and that today in his press conference, he said, "I used to say that. I no longer believe that." He said that he will not call China a currency manipulator. He changed his mind on Janet Yellen, who's the chairman of the Fed. That he's like, "I like her. Maybe I'll continue to -- you know, reup her when her time comes." And he will now support the export-import bank.
So those are four issues that were pretty important to his base that he said, "Oh, wait. Now that I'm president, I'm thinking this through, talking to a lot of people, met with the Chinese president, having a different -- change of mind."
On this one he hasn't changed his mind at all. And yet, it's interesting to look at public opinion surveys about the wall. Because they like the fact that he's been able to, through policy, even just commentary, stopped a lot of the illegal immigration coming from across the southern border.
GUILFOYLE: As a deterrent effect.
PERINO: But the specific wall, there doesn't seem to be a ton of support for it. But he's going to have to ask those members of Congress to pony up some money for it. And that will be an interesting bargaining chimp -- chip for him. Not chimp, chip.
GUTFELD: "Bargaining Chimp" sounds like a game show. I would watch that.
GUILFOYLE: You would be the star of that. OK.
GUTFELD: I would.
GUILFOYLE: So Juan, Dana's saying, look, there's been a lot of, essentially, flip-flop, changing his mind on it. What do you make of that? Is it OK to do that? Does he have to stay, you know, completely consistent or, you know, do you evaluate things as they come? I mean, I have an idea about China. But...
WILLIAMS: To me, when I look at the numbers, he's maintaining his support among Republican voters at this point. I mean, they're smart people. They see that he is changing course on many things. Obviously, he didn't get Obamacare replaced and repealed in a few days. That's what he said he was going to do.
I think the pressure now, Kimberly, is less about the wall and much more about tax reform. I think that is the sort of boiling pot in Washington at the moment.
When it comes to the wall, his own homeland security secretary said we're not going to build a wall. We may put up fencing some places. We may do more in terms of surveillance in other places. We're not building a wall.
So Trump is saying, "Oh, we're building a wall. We have bidders." You go talk to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. You talk to Paul Ryan. They say, "What?" It's just not on their agenda. That's not something they're going to be fighting about right now.
GUILFOYLE: Well, they may have other things as their priorities.
WILLIAMS: They're trying to get the Obamacare deal done so they can get tax reform done. That's the cutting edge. As far as this stuff, I think, you know, it plays to the base. It just, you know...
GUILFOYLE: As he gestures to Bolling.
BOLLING: You point to me. Points to me.
WILLIAMS: It does.
BOLLING: Can you imagine how many times he said it's going to be a big, beautiful wall and then asks the crowd who's going to pay for it? Mexico. It's going to get built.
WILLIAMS: And Mexico is going to pay for it?
BOLLING: Yes! Yes!
WILLIAMS: At some point, do you think he might...
BOLLING: There are so many ways to make Mexico pay for it.
WILLIAMS: At some point, do you think you could say, "I like Donald Trump, but that wall is a little bit of a fantasy. It's ridiculous"?
BOLLING: I still contend that building a wall will save America a lot of money. A lot of money.
WILLIAMS: No migration.
BOLLING: A lot of money.
WILLIAMS: And in fact, the arrests last year...
BOLLING: On transfer payments -- on transfer payments to illegals who are here, getting a whole bunch of stuff when they come over. J
GUILFOYLE: Juan, you keep talking like that, the wall is going to get what, Bolling?
GUILFOYLE: Bigger. Ten feet.
WILLIAMS: My airplane will come down.
GUILFOYLE: OK. Ahead, as you know, college kids these days, they need a lot of safe spaces. Now, some students at Notre Dame feel unsafe because of our vice president; and he's coming to speak to them soon. Greg gives them a free-speech message next.
GUTFELD: Vice President Mike Pence is set to speak at Notre Dame's commencement ceremony, and some students aren't pleased. In fact, they feel unsafe. Not sure why. He has no criminal record, seems nice.
But he did grow up Catholic, which has certain views on gay marriage and abortion. So I can see why students would be fearful, students who go to the University of Notre Dame, a Catholic school. Which leads me to ask, if you feel so unsafe around Pence, why the heck are you at that school?
GUTFELD: I guess Pence's beliefs aren't that objectionable, or else you'd refuse such a superior Catholic education.
But the silliest part of the story? Students are mimicking Karl Rove, sharing fearful messages about Pence on whiteboards. It's disgusting. First, they wrote it in English. Why not Esperanto? Or Arabic? Yupik or Pawnee? Writing such messages in English is an act of Western privilege, which serves to marginalize those who communicate through other means.
And why must the boards be white? Do they have a problem with blackboards? What message are they sending? Whiteboards are superior to blackboards?
If anything, these punks should all be expelled, or at the very least, suspended until I'm asked to speak at their commencement. After all, the school's mascot is called the Fighting Irish, not the "Weepy Snowflakes," and it's a leprechaun, much like me.
GUILFOYLE: Aw, there it was. I was waiting for that.
GUTFELD: Yes, you wanted to insult me, but I got there first, Kimberly.
GUTFELD: I knew you were going to do it.
GUILFOYLE: But look, the size disparagement?
GUTFELD: Here's the thing. OK. The reflex, you know, complaining about commencement speakers, we see it all the time. But it's funny, because Pence reflects the values of the college. Whether you agree or not, he reflects the values of the college. So you're kind of a hypocrite for saying you don't want him there while going to the damn school!
PERINO: You're getting a degree.
GUILFOYLE: Much like Claremont. Right. No, I know. I mean, maybe just because, you know, they liked the movie "Rudy," and they said, "Oh, I want to go to Notre Dame," and they didn't realize that...
GUTFELD: Great film.
GUILFOYLE: It's a great film.
GUILFOYLE: But it's a Catholic university.
GUTFELD: Another little guy.
GUILFOYLE: Another little guy, capable of great things. I see the theme.
But you know, this is sad, though, because a university is supposed to be where you open your mind to a broader education by listening to different viewpoints. You should be excited that the vice president of the United States is going to be there. And actually, listen to what he has to say. And if you want to protest about it after, or write an essay, or whatever, go on the Internet or social media...
GUTFELD: That takes work.
GUILFOYLE: That takes work. And you actually have to listen and show up and attend and do something that would be meaningful and broaden your mind with your education. So I'm disappointed, because I really -- I love Notre Dame.
GUTFELD: Eric, "not feeling safe" is now the thing you say when you disagree with someone.
BOLLING: So you mentioned the Catholic university aspect. I went to their website. Here's their mission statement. Right on page one. "The university encourages a way of living consonant with a Christian community and manifest in prayer, liturgy and service." And they go on to say, "all dimensions." All dimensions of university. "Notre Dame pursues its objectives through the formation of an authentic community graced by the spirit of Christ."
BOLLING: I mean, you can pretty much apply that to Pence.
GUTFELD: Right. Exactly.
BOLLING: And so if their mission statement is that to teach kids, that should be your -- it should be your opening speaker, your commencement speaker, your guest speaker...
GUILFOYLE: Your valedictorian.
BOLLING: Your valedictorian. And he should have tenure at Notre Dame.
And I agree with Kimberly: I love the university. I don't know what's going on there.
GUTFELD: They have a great book store there.
You know, Juan, they invited President Obama here, if that's his real name. Now this is interesting. He's pro-choice. He was pro-choice. So you know, the university was -- what I would believe is pro-life, invited a pro-choice speaker. And I'm sure these -- there were some protesters, pro- life protestors, but that's consistent with the values of the school, correct?
WILLIAMS: Yes. I mean, we're talking about education. Notre Dame was founded as a Catholic school. A lot of schools founded in religious traditions.
WILLIAMS: Notre Dame, you know, I think it's a great school, but let me just tell you, they -- what's going on here is they didn't want Trump to speak.
WILLIAMS: And the students acted in such a way as to prevent an invitation, which is almost pro forma that Notre Dame invites the new president in his first year to come speak.
WILLIAMS: They stopped. So they get Pence in place.
And then you get people...
PERINO: Great point.
WILLIAMS: And I think that this is all over the country in terms of the college campuses. You get people like the College Democrats...
WILLIAMS: ... university council, the gays, all that, protesting. They don't like the Trump administration policies. That's what's going on here.
I will say one last thing.
WILLIAMS: When they do things like they say to people, "We don't want to hear you because we disagree with you," I couldn't -- I find that appalling on a liberal arts campus.
GUTFELD: Me, too. And you know, Dana, Notre Dame is sexy. It's why they should have to be -- sexist and sexy.
PERINO: I was like, ""The leprechaun?"
GUTFELD: No, the hunchback of Notre Dame is sexy. I was just going to take -- why does it have to be dame?
PERINO: That's a great point. Was that in the "D" block?
BOLLING: "Our lady of the sea." It's a reference. I'm sorry.
PERINO: It's just so incredibly wimpy to say you feel unsafe.
PERINO: Use your words.
GUTFELD: Yes. Use your words.
PERINO: Use your words. And also, I feel like these colleges should just cancel commencement.
PERINO: Like, why have it?
PERINO: Save a lot of money. Basically, maybe if you want to do a service project or something as a class, a graduating class, fine. If it causes so much anxiety for you to have the vice president of the United States come and give your speech, then don't go.
GUTFELD: I blame "Love Actually."
GUILFOYLE: Oh, you blame that movie.
GUTFELD: Remember, these little -- holding up signs, that started with "Love Actually," you know, "I love you," with the little signs. I hate that.
PERINO: Tell that to "The Today Show."
GUILFOYLE: I've seen you in my neighborhood.
GUTFELD: "The Today Show." Outside "The Today Show."
GUILFOYLE: He's outside my window with a little sign.
GUTFELD: Sean Spicer still apologizing for his Hitler blunder. He now says he let the president down. The latest on the Spicer storm. Next.
WILLIAMS: It's been a rough 24 hours for White House press secretary Sean Spicer. The president's spokesman is trying to calm a storm created yesterday when he falsely claimed that Hitler didn't sink as low as Assad in chemical weapons, forgetting about the Holocaust.
Spicer calls the disastrous blunder inexcusable, and he has offered several apologies amid a number of calls for his resignation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I screwed up. I mean, you know, and I hope that people understand that we all make mistakes. I hope I showed that I -- that I understand that I did that and that I saw people's forgiveness, because I screwed up.
It really is painful to myself to know that I did something like that. I tried to make a comparison. There's no comparing atrocities. It's disappointing, because I think I've let the president down.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WILLIAMS: Let me go to a former White House press secretary -- Dana.
PERINO: Well, I felt for him, because you know, when you are at the podium, there's a couple of things going on here. One is that the policy process is behind where the press is. OK? So he's being asked to explain things that are not yet set in stone, because the president is still figuring out, "OK, what are we going to do?" They're trying to figure out -- because it was Assad that used the chemical weapons that put this whole thing into motion.
So he's at the podium, trying to answer a lot of questions that are kind of unanswerable right now. Trying to make comparisons like that on the fly are very difficult if you don't have it just exactly right or even read it from something written.
One of the things I always got accused of, and including here on this show, is that I'm very careful and deliberate in my word choice. But it's partly because I was always afraid of causing something like this.
Now, Sean immediately apologized. I think that Nancy Pelosi calling for his resignation was a step too far and probably assured that he will never get fired. And also, I thought that the three network newscasts last night that all led with this as this is the biggest thing that was happening. Meanwhile, you had Rex Tillerson on his way to Russia, and a question of whether he would get to meet with Putin, et cetera. There's the North Korean activity, as well. I think that it was -- it is water under the bridge now because of the way Sean handled it with such grace and dignity afterwards.
WILLIAMS: All right. Do you see any problem here? One, for the president and, two, in terms of the Jewish community? It's not just Pelosi asking. You have several Jewish organizations saying he should be gone.
BOLLING: So -- so the unfortunate timing was it was day two of Passover, which you know, kind of exacerbated everything.
Look, he may have the toughest job in the whole administration.
BOLLING: He's got a hostile press that's firing questions at him...
WILLIAMS: That's true.
BOLLING: ... looking for every little thing.
But on -- but he can't be excused for this. Answer the question, Sean. And don't elaborate. If you noticed, that -- that press conference started out very familiar. He was having fun. He was joking with them. And he got a little bit too wordy. Just answer what you know, and as Dana points out, don't speculate. Just go to it. That ship needs to be tightened up a little bit right there. He shouldn't be fired.
WILLIAMS: Yes. Kimberly, people in the Jewish community say remember the Holocaust Remembrance Day? Remember it didn't include the Jewish community? I think people are worried about attacks at the cemeteries and centers. Now this. What's going on?
GUILFOYLE: Well, you know, it's one of those things, just like, you know, for 9/11. Never forget. It's something you always have to be very cognizant of, of the pain and the suffering and the horrific loss of life.
He seems to be very sincere in terms of his apology. Believe me, I'm sure that he didn't sleep at all last night, as Dana will tell us, because you have him on, right? O'Reilly, "Factor" tonight.
So he's, I think, tried to get out in front of it, talking to everybody, you know, answering the questions, saying that it was, you know, unfortunate, and he feels bad that he let down the president. I'm sure he does. So let's see how he handles it, you know, going forward.
WILLIAMS: So Greg, if you were up there, how would you get out of this? How would you heal this wound?
GUTFELD: I'm not interested in that. I'm more interested -- I'm interested in the fact that everybody knew that he made a mistake. He knew he made a mistake. But it didn't still -- it didn't stop the sharks from circling. Because people love the low-hanging fruit of reflexive outrage. You know, the thing is -- and it's great. When people point out your mistakes, they make a mistake.
Like the Hill reporter who went after him and then referred to Sean Spicer as Hitler by accident. And they had another guy like Judd Legume (ph) or something like that from Think Progress who was going after me for saying he made a mistake. And then all of a sudden, he mistakes a -- like a Facebook Post by Spicer. Everybody makes these mistakes. Shut up. Stop talking in my ear, you producer. It's like how -- it's like it doesn't help when you talk in my ear telling me "You've got to go." It makes me talk more.
But my point is this: People love to express manufactured outrage, given any opportunity, because it feels good. It's much better instead just to talk to real people.
WILLIAMS: Do you have anything else to say?
WILLIAMS: OK. So "One More Thing" is coming next.
GUILFOYLE: All right. Whatever.
BOLLING: Time for "One More Thing" -- K.G.
GUILFOYLE: Time for...
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GUILFOYLE: Kimberly's Food Court.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GUTFELD: Food Court! Yes!
GUILFOYLE: OK, you heard it, and you heard it on Twitter. Today is National Grilled Cheese Day, and I love a grilled cheese sandwich almost as much as I love salami. It's delicious. It's usually the most inexpensive thing on the menu. So if you're invited by guests, it's a polite thing to order. And also tasty.
GUTFELD: That's true.
GUILFOYLE: And filling. Except if you go to Serendipity 3 in New York City, it's $214 for a grilled cheese sandwich...
PERINO: No way!
GUILFOYLE: Dom Perignon champagne, 24-karat edible gold flakes. I'm available, people, if you want to go.
But I wanted to celebrate, for our fantastic friend, Juan, with the delicious plate of grilled cheese sandwiches.
PERINO: Happy birthday!
GUILFOYLE: Happy birthday, Juan. And I wanted to make it a full party, catered.
WILLIAMS: You did.
GUILFOYLE: So I have these delicious sandwiches and your birthday cake.
WILLIAMS: I thought this was going to be my cake.
GUILFOYLE: Nobody gets food and a cake. So this is in fast, people. A fiesta.
WILLIAMS: He's pulling out the shot. Sean (ph) is in the deal. Sean, this is a big enough party.
GUTFELD: I got one of our producers! (HOLDING A GUY BY THE SLEEVE) I got them! I got them!
PERINO: Is he yelling in your ear?
GUILFOYLE: Juan, we love you.
WILLIAMS: You're kind, Kimberly.
GUILFOYLE: And we want to say happy birthday.
WILLIAMS: Thank you, Kimberly.
PERINO: Did you have a good birthday?
WILLIAMS: I had a great birthday, thank you.
WILLIAMS: The grandkids came over and sang "Happy Birthday" to the old boy.
BOLLING: You want to do your "One More Thing"?
WILLIAMS: OK. All right. All right, so last night, in Dallas, former star, quarterback of the Cowboys, Tony Romo, decided to play some basketball. For their last home game, the Dallas Mavericks, made him an honorary player, so he got to warm up, dress up and practice but not play, because the NBA refused to recognize the contract with Romo.
But the crowd, they loved it. And it was an honor, Romo said. He said he was such a lucky guy. He's retiring this year and will become a sports broadcaster for CBS.
GUTFELD: Can I plug my podcast?
GUTFELD: My podcast, FoxNewsPodcast.com. FoxNewspodcast.com, is that right?
WILLIAMS: It better be.
PERINO: FoxNews.podcast.com or slash broadcast.
GUTFELD: It better be.
BOLLING: That's it. Gotta go.
GUILFOYLE: Happy birthday, Juan.
BOLLING: "Special Report," next.
WILLIAMS: Thank you, kids.
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