This is a rush transcript from "The Story," Septemeber 17, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MARTHA MACCALLUM, ANCHOR: We sure do. Thank you, Bret. Good evening, everybody.
So, as you got the border security fight, you got the gun debate, you got the opioid crisis, you got a lot of unresolved issues in America. But they're not one, but two impeachment efforts that are now underway tonight by House Democrats. They want the president, and then they also want some of them, Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh, out.
The House Judiciary Committee today spent over five hours on the now- debunked Russia probe to remind everyone these are the words of the Mueller report after they spent two years investigating, this was the bottom line. The investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.
So, as you also probably remember, the outcome was a disappointment to Democrats who were shocked. And they are now hoping that they can salvage an impeachment case anyway. They're pursuing the Russia probe continually, the president as a racist, his taxes which are under investigation in New York, and they are also digging into that. And also his businesses and the connections that he has through those.
So, today, the House Judiciary Committee questioned former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who by the way, had already testified before Congress three times and has been interviewed by the special counsel adding up to what he figures is about 20 hours' worth of questioning in total.
REP. HAKEEM JEFFRIES, D-N.Y.: Are you the hit man, the bag man, the lookout, or all of the above?
COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER CAMPAIGN MANAGER TO DONALD TRUMP: I think I'm the good looking man, actually.
REP. STEVE COHEN, D-TENN.: You didn't think that was illegal to obstruct justice?
LEWANDOWSKI: Congressman, the president didn't ask me anything illegal.
REP. SHEILA JACKSON LEE, D-TX: This is a House Judiciary, not a house party. Sessions on the Trump --
LEWANDOWSKI: So, if you ask me a question, give me the opportunity to answer your question.
REP. ERIC SWALWELL, D-CALIF.: Are you ashamed of the words that you wrote down?
LEWANDOWSKI: President Swalwell, I'm very happy of what I've written, but you're welcome to read it if you'd like.
REP. JERROLD NADLER, D-N.Y.: The president is intent on obstructing our legitimate oversight. You are aiding him in that obstruction and I will remind you that Article 3 of the impeachment against President Nixon was based on obstruction of Congress.
MACCALLUM: So, obstruction is still the avenue there. Good evening, everybody. I'm Martha MacCallum and this is where “The Story” begins tonight.
Now, bear in mind, this is the latest poll on how the American people feel about this effort. 59 percent are opposed to President Trump being impeached, 40 --35 percent support that avenue and 41 percent were asked is it a good idea for the House Judiciary to conduct an impeachment inquiry? And 41 percent said, yes. 51 percent said, no, it's a bad idea.
So, now, when asked by Congressman Matt Gaetz today why Democrats continue, despite perhaps what the polling says. Here's Corey Lewandowski on that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEWANDOWSKI: You know, Congressman. I think they hate this president more than they love their country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: So, here now, joining me exclusively on “The Story” tonight, after hours of questioning today, Corey Lewandowski. Corey, good evening. Good to see you tonight. You've had a busy day, how did you think it went?
LEWANDOWSKI: You know, look, I think, I reiterated what the American people already knew. There was no collusion, there was no obstruction. The Mueller report is very clear about that. And what we know is that the far-left wing of the Democratic Party has to have these hearings to protect themselves in their congressional districts from further left progressives who want to take them out in their primary races. This is all politics. And the truth is it's a disservice to the American people.
MACCALLUM: Why did you decide to go? Did you feel that the subpoena was - - you know, that you had to because of the subpoena?
LEWANDOWSKI: I -- look, I've always said I will come and answer questions. I've spent more than 20 -- maybe 25 hours answering questions before the House Intelligence Committee, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Special Counsel's Office.
I have nothing to hide because we never committed any crimes at the campaign. We never colluded with anyone, which is exactly what the Mueller report says.
So, I was happy to go. But then, they decided to issue me a subpoena. And then last week, they changed the rules of the House, so that not only members of Congress could ask me questions, but consultants to the committee who were brought in just for the impeachment proceeding could then start asking questions. It's a very unfair process.
MACCALLUM: All right, Jackie Speier was on CNN today. And she believes that because of your appearance today, you should be fined. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JACKIE SPEIER, D-CALIF.: If I were Mr. Nadler, right now I would be slapping Mr. Lewandowski with an inherent contempt order and calling him in front of the House of Representatives and fining him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: What do you say to that?
LEWANDOWSKI: I've never -- looked, maybe that's happened before. I've never heard of somebody being fined after going in front of Congress. Hey, why don't you go and bring Jim Comey back who we know has purged himself in front of Congress? Why don't you take the opportunity and have a testimony with Michael Horowitz who wrote the inspector general's report? Why don't you fix the problem of illegal immigration, which is -- you know, killing Americans because they're coming across the border illegally?
These are actually the obligations of the House Judiciary Committee. But instead, they want to bring me forward and Jackie Speier, wants to fine me, for what? Coming to Congress and testifying in open Congress under oath? I'm happy to do that.
MACCALLUM: Yes. So, this is part of the testimony when a representative Hakeem Jeffries brought up the fact that you are interested in running for Senate in New Hampshire, and suggested that maybe, maybe that was why you were there. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEFFRIES: This is not a Republican primary campaign, you are not on the campaign trail yet. This is the House Judiciary Committee, act like you know the difference.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEWANDOWSKI: Look, I was subpoenaed to show up. This wasn't like, hey, Corey Lewandowski is going to launch his U.S. Senate campaign in front of the House Judiciary Committee. Nobody's ever done that before.
But what the congressman failed to articulate was, I was compelled by a lawful subpoena to show up today and that's what I did.
MACCALLUM: So, you did tweet though, "Thank you @realDonaldTrump. No collusion, no obstruction, the American people know it, and I'll continue to remind them. #Senate2020. #StandwithCorey."
LEWANDOWSKI: Well, hey, hey, by the way, there's nothing wrong with still having the right of freedom of speech. And, you know, they can have the opportunity to rake me over the coals for four, five, six hours, maybe, to remind the American people with I already know and I've always said, there was no collusion, no obstruction.
I think the people of New Hampshire deserve new leadership. And I'm going to make a decision very soon if I want to run for the U.S. Senate.
MACCALLUM: All right. So, the core -- you know, just to go to the core of the questioning. They really focused on the president's request to you to have a conversation with Jeff Sessions about removing Robert Mueller, which you say you never ended up doing, correct?
LEWANDOWSKI: That's right. I've never met with Jeff Sessions to relay that message. And so, this --
MACCALLUM: Why didn't you?
LEWANDOWSKI: Well, like, because I went on vacation. Because it wasn't a priority, to be honest with you. And so, you know, and I said this in the committee. The president asked me to go have a conversation with Jeff Sessions is basically what's in the Mueller report. I've testified to the fact that I believe that to be accurate. And then, I just never did it.
And so, they want to talk about what may have transpired had I spoken to Jeff Sessions. But it's all speculation because I never had the conversation. So, what is here to potentially talk about?
MACCALLUM: I mean, you know, it looks like -- and this is it-- let's play Representative Hank Johnson here on this line of questioning. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. HANK JOHNSON, D-GA: You felt a little squeamish about delivering that message, correct?
LEWANDOWSKI: No, sir.
JOHNSON: Well, why didn't you -- why did it take you so long, and you'd never even delivered it?
LEWANDOWSKI: Correct, I never delivered the message.
JOHNSON: Yes, you chickened out.
LEWANDOWSKI: I went on vacation.
JOHNSON: you went on vacation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: That kind of a lot of laughs.
LEWANDOWSKI: Well, it's true. Look, it was -- it was the summertime. My kids want to go to the beach. You know, and so, I took my kids to the beach. I mean, you know, they make it seem like this is this big nefarious idea.
We went to the beach for two weeks, we went up to Maine, we had fun in the sun, right, that's what we did. Big deal. I mean, look, maybe, maybe Congressman Johnson has never been on vacation, I'm not sure.
But when it came to the family, I decided to prioritize them over a potential message to Jeff Sessions.
MACCALLUM: So, I mean, you know, I guess regardless of what the president wanted to achieve by asking you to do that, you never did that. And it also -- I think, bears reminding people that the president never did fire Robert Mueller. And that at the end of the investigation, Robert Mueller said that it was never impeded. So, I mean --
LEWANDOWSKI: That's -- it's such an important point. You -- you've articulated what's so important. Mueller had free rein, all the way through his investigation to conduct in any way he wanted, neither the acting attorney general, the deputy attorney general or the current attorney general attempted to impede the Mueller investigation.
Anyway, and Bob Mueller testified to that. That's a very important point.
MACCALLUM: You know, when you look at this, so you step back, you're a former campaign manager for the Trump campaign. Look at the political optics as we like to say of all of this. How do you think their pursuit of this? Please for them with the American people politically, and how do you think it please for President Trump that this is still being pursued?
LEWANDOWSKI: Well, the American people don't want this. Your polling data just showed that. And what we do know is if the Democrats in Congress and the majority of the House of Representatives had enough votes to impeach the president, they would have already done that.
But it's only one-third of their caucus that's supporting this, which is basically the same amount of the American people who support this.
LEWANDOWSKI: 65 percent of the American people know what I already know. The president didn't commit any crimes, didn't collude with any foreign entities, and didn't try and stop the Mueller investigation.
So, if he is guilty of something, it's of putting America first. And if that's the case, then, he's absolutely guilty as charged.
MACCALLUM: Yes, I mean, there's also a report this week that shows that the FBI's communications have been -- you know, interfered with over the last several years in a really shocking way. And I can't help but think what kind of time and effort if it had gone into that angle of this investigation might have, you know, sort of actually brought more fruit in terms of keeping the country safe. But, we'll see.
Corey, thank you very much. Good to see you here tonight.
LEWANDOWSKI: Thank you.
MACCALLUM: Corey Lewandowski. So my next guest was very much front and center and very fired up for the fireworks today as the top Republican and ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee.
Congressman Doug Collins joins me now. We should note that we reached out to several Democrats on the Judiciary Committee as well and they were not able to join us for this segment tonight. We hope that they will in the future.
Congressman Collins, thank you very much for being here tonight.
REP. DOUG COLLINS (R-GA): Martha, it's great to be with you.
MACCALLUM: I want to play for everybody a little bit of what you had to say today. Because you were definitely fired up, as I said. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: They want to do this out front. They don't try to actually get information. That's what real oversight is. My majority made a promise, we'll impeach him, we'll investigate him, for most of them, it happened in November 2016, because they couldn't believe that Donald Trump won.
Mr. Chairman, there's so much that we could actually do together. There's so much. But as long as we don't have time, we'll continue with rerun season.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: All right. So, that's how you started out today. What was your reaction when all was said and done about how it played out?
COLLINS: This was a sad day, Martha. It's one of those saddest days in committee, I've been up for 6-1/2 years. And today, we watch the majority to simply trash procedure, they trash everything because they're so just be in on getting this president.
I termed with what has happened today is bring a big donor to workday. Because at the end of the hearing, which we objected to, they allowed a staff member, who's a big donor Mary Burke, $70,000 to the Democratic Party.
He got to ask 30 minutes of questions. 30 minutes and he's a contract employee of that committee. He doesn't have to give up his practice anywhere else, he comes and does what he wants to.
So, let's bring a big donor to workday, and he got to ask questions. But when it came time for the 30 minutes of staff questions on our side, they would not let the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee take that 30 minutes and use it.
They said members had already had their time. I'm not sure that American people are going to understand how you let a paid donor, who is now a contract employee, not a staff member, overriding an elected representative.
COLLINS: This was a sad day, Martha.
MACCALLUM: You know, in terms of what happens going forward as I mentioned at the top of the show, there are a number of avenues of Investigation. The president's taxes, there's also a New York investigation that has asked for eight years of the president's taxes, where do you see this going next on your committee?
COLLINS: Anything that they can do to get a headline. This is simply the chairman has turned this into a press release committee. All they want to do is have cameras show up and press show up. And they'll throw anything they can to get the president, to try and tear him down. They have become the literally, the political arm of the DCCC.
The problem we're having is, here is Corey out and stated so well. He made his statements today, he's testified before Congress many times. They've gained nothing in these investigations. But people are getting tired of it. They're going to see it even more so.
And when the people actually look at really what happened today, how they just trampled over time and rights. And then, actually, put a paid democratic person up there, and bring a lobbyist and basically bring a donor today.
That's just amazing to me when they did that over the rights of our duly elected representatives of the U.S. Congress -- States Congress.
MACCALLUM: Representative Collins, good to see you, sir. Thank you very much.
COLLINS: Good to see you too. Take care.
MACCALLUM: You too. Coming up next, a story exclusive tonight with former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, who has now decided that he wants to speak out for the very first time about the Kavanaugh impeachment fight that is sending new shockwaves through Washington tonight.
MACCALLUM: So from one impeachment story to another. A member of the so- called Squad Representative Ayanna Pressley introduced an impeachment resolution against the Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Here's the freshman congresswoman earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. AYANNA PRESSLEY, D-MASS.: It's deeply disturbing that someone that serves in the highest court of the land could have this many allegations. And this is why I filed the resolution to initiate an impeachment inquiry.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: But some of her own party's senior leaders think dueling impeachment investigations just might be overkill. Minority Whip Dick Durbin saying, "Get real. We've got to get beyond this "impeachment is the answer to every problem." It's not realistic. If that's how we are identified in Congress as the impeachment Congress, we run the risk that people will feel we're ignoring the issues that mean a lot to them as families."
Wise words probably from Mr. Durbin. House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler agrees.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JERRY NADLER, D-N.Y.: We have our hands full with impeaching the president right now and it's going to take up our limited resources and time for a while.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: So that is Durbin and Nadler's take politically. Here now exclusively former U.S. Attorney General under President George W. Bush, Michael Mukasey. Great to have you here this evening, sir.
MICHAEL MUKASEY, FORMER ATTORNEY GENERAL, UNITED STATES: Great to be here.
MACCALLUM: What do you make of this whole thing?
MUKASEY: Well, I don't -- I mean I don't think that Nadler came up to Durbin's level. I think Durbin really struck the right note with two words, "get real." The advice would really be well given to Nadler who's own so-called impeachment hearing on the president is a bit of play-acting also.
But certainly, this claim that they're going to impeach Kavanaugh is ridiculous. And it's not about -- it's not about impeaching Kavanaugh, it's about dirtying him up and destroying his reputation, credibility, and the reputation and the credibility of the court that he sits on.
MACCALLUM: And the goal beyond that maybe that some Democrats just don't like the numbers. They don't like the way things are going against them in the courts. The president has 180 court appointments that he's been able to make, two Supreme Court justices, and they're looking for ways to change that equation it looks like.
MUKASEY: Well, until recently, the Democrats or those people on the left, and not just Democrats but people don't know left generally, have relied on the court to do things that the electorate won't do. And sometimes those things are sufficiently working to the rest of the people of the country that they rise up and I think that -- or that they turn out to be a mistake and it's time to put it into that.
MACCALLUM: Going back to what Representative Pressley said in the introduction. She said, it's time to get rid of him, and I'm paraphrasing. It's time to get rid of him because there are so many allegations.
You know, as a legal mind, what do you -- how do you interpret that and this whole New York Times thing that has dragged him through the mud and turned out to have a lot of errors?
MUKASEY: There's no way to interpret that statement. The Constitution says high crimes and misdemeanors. That means gross abuse of office. There is nothing in whatever they have by way of allegations of his college career that amounts to gross abuse of anything. So I don't get it.
And the claim that somehow he misrepresented what he had done in college I think isn't borne out by the facts. This is -- this is another blind alley. They come up with a new -- a new allegation in which the report was that they never spoke to the source of the allegation and they never spoke to the victim, and that the only information they have is that the victim has denied it to her friend or says she doesn't recall it. That's a blind alley.
MACCALLUM: It's very sketchy to be sure. President Trump is obviously concerned about the what's going on with his nominee Brett Kavanaugh or his Justice, I should say. He went through this when he was a nominee as well. And the president tweeted this on Sunday.
He said, Brett Kavanaugh should start suing people for libel or the Justice Department should come to his rescue. The lies being told about him are unbelievable. False accusations without recrimination, when does it stop? They're trying to influence his opinions. Can't let that happen.
What would you say to the president about those ideas?
MUKASEY: I think as to the first part of it that they should start suing people. The President before he became president did that not very successfully. As far as the Justice Department rescuing him, I don't know under what provision they would rescue him. I don't think he needs being rescued. I think the president ought to sit back and let events play out on their own.
MACCALLUM: Attorney General Mukasey, thank you very much, sir. Good to see you tonight. Thank you for coming in.
MUKASEY: Good to be with you.
MACCALLUM: You too.
MACCALLUM: Great to have you. So coming up, President Trump and former President Obama have one thing in common that any candidate really needs to win the White House, the groundswell of support that inspires a movement behind a candidacy. This is Elizabeth Warren's crowd last night in New York. Biden is still in the lead but he -- can he hold on to it?
The crowd is on the left, the Huckabee's are on the right of that shot. Governor Mike Huckabee and Sarah Huckabee Sanders weigh in on that. They weren't in the Warren crowd last night. The G.M. strike is also on the table and the president's wall when we come back with the Huckabee's next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Ours was not a campaign but rather an incredible and great movement made up of millions of hard-working men and women who love their country and want a better, brighter future for themselves and for their family.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: So how did a freshman senator with a fairly short resume in political life land the job of President of the United States? He built a nationwide movement on hope and change, inspiring millions to attend rallies across the country and then turn their enthusiasm into votes.
A similar playbook proved powerful when a real estate mogul turned reality T.V. star with no political experience promised to make America great again. Bernie Sanders turned out a passionate grassroots following in 2016 but fell short. Now many of those supporters appear to be turning towards the Senator from Massachusetts.
Last night Elisabeth Warren's campaign estimates that 20,000 people showed up for a rally in New York City, President Trump's home turf. Her message, fundamentally transform our government. And tonight, a new poll shows that she is the Democratic candidates' voters are most enthusiastic about. That's the measure here beating out Sanders and Biden in the category of enthusiasm.
Joining me now two enthusiastic people, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and his daughter former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, both are now Fox News Contributor. Sarah, let me welcome you to thank the family.
SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, CONTRIBUTOR: Thank you.
MACCALLUM: It's great to have you with us with your expertise and all of your background and it's OK to have you (INAUDIBLE).
MIKE HUCKABEE, CONTRIBUTOR: Wow, boy, do I ever feel special. Thank you, Martha.
MACCALLUM: You know, before I jump in there, I just want to get one quick thought from you because I know you just got back from Israel.
MACCALLUM: Your thoughts on the election in Netanyahu's situation right now.
HUCKABEE: Much closer than I think anyone would like it to be if you like Netanyahu, and I do. But it still doesn't matter who wins the election tonight because they have to form a coalition, the uniqueness of a parliamentary system.
So he could still be Prime Minister even if he doesn't get as many votes as Benny Gantz's party so -- but it's quite a mess over there, to be honest with you.
MACCALLUM: It's very close as you say, and we wait to see how it -- how it ends up. Sarah, with regard -- you know, the President obviously loved to talk about crowd size, right. They're wrapped around the building, there's tons of people. So now you've got some pretty impressive showings for Elizabeth Warren. Do you think that it matter -- does crowd size matter?
SANDERS: I see that when you see the type of movement the president created in 2016 -- but not just that he created, but that he has been able to maintain.
The crowds now are just as big, actually probably bigger now than they were even in 2016. I think Elizabeth Warren growing momentum is nothing but great news for the president. I think the more she talks, the more she becomes the face of the Democrat Party, I think the more the Republicans are going to look spectacular, come November 2020.
Her ideas are so far out there and so expensive, so crippling --
MACCALLUM: I mean, everybody has a way of attacking center ones after they get the nomination. This is her last night, sort of talking more than she generally does about the fact that she is a woman. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, D-MASS., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We are not here today because of famous arches or famous men. In fact, we are not here because of men at all.
WARREN: We are here because of some hardworking women.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: So, the feeling is that the president has work to do in the suburbs with women, in particular. Are there some voters who are going to perhaps, be persuaded by them?
MIKE HUCKABEE, CONTRIBUTOR: I honestly think Elizabeth Warren does a pretty good job of diagnosing the problem, a lot of her languages populist, very similar to what the president says about people being left out of the system.
She is, in many ways, mirroring and echoing what the president said in 2016. But here's the problem. Her prescription for fixing it is dramatically different than this president. Hers is more taxes, more government, more regulation. Green New Deal, get rid of --
MACCALLUM: Restructuring the entire government.
HUCKABEE: Totally. And Donald Trump is lowered taxes, less government, get it out of your hair and let the free market work. That is a great contrast. They see the problem the same, but boy, did they ever see the solution is different.
MACCALLUM: Yes. Sarah, I mean, honestly, you know, when you head into an election year, the president needs, he needs win. He needs a win with regard to G.M., for example. You've got 50,000 workers who are now out there on strike. Word today that the White House is trying to make a deal to reopen an assembly plant in Ohio. How concerned would you be about the situation with G.M., with these plants closing, moving to Mexico -- not easy.
SANDERS: Well, I think if anybody in this country is an American worker, nobody has fought harder for those people than President Trump. I think he has had policy after policy that has helped grow the employment rate. He has increased wages. He's done a lot of different things that have helped create a lot of growth in the economic community.
MACCALLUM: Some of his critics has seem to have pummeled the other day saying he really has done not enough to talk to these companies, specifically, and to do his magic with them and encourage them to stay, to keep those factories here. A bunch of them have closed.
SANDERS: I think that is the exact opposite of what he has done. Not only has he been fighting to keep companies here, but he has taken on countries like China, who have been cheating out American workers for decades, when the previous administration ignored that problem, been unwilling to stand up and say, hey, enough is enough, you are not going to take our ideas, you're not going to steal from United States anymore. You're not going to cheat our people and you are not going to take our jobs.
The president is actually been setting up for those people, and while that is a process, he has moved that further along. We just saw, in the last couple of days, that China's economy continues to drop.
MACCALLUM: Yes, they're in trouble. There's no doubt about it.
SANDERS: I think it's at the worst place it's been in 17 years that we saw on the report today. They are getting to a place where they have to make a deal with the president, because they are hurting so bad. And that's because the president has been standing up and saying we're going to fight for American workers.
MACCALLUM: I mean, certainly, if he could get that factory reopened in Ohio, that's a good thing for Ohio, 2020.
HUCKABEE: Well, and there are more manufacturing jobs. We were losing them. There are people in the other party who said that they'll never come back, nobody has a magic wand. Well, apparently, he did, because manufacturing jobs are back. And at 3.7 percent unemployment.
I mean, the fact is, that's virtually full employment. Anyone who wants a job can get a job in America today. Maybe not the one they really want, but they can be employed.
MACCALLUM: You know who can get a job in America today? Sean Spicer. he got a job by Dancing with the Stars.
MACCALLUM: Sarah, are we going to see you on Dancing with the Stars?
SANDERS: I will not. I'm happy right here. If I'm doing any TV outside of Fox, it'll be a long time.
HUCKABEE: Good for Sean.
SANDERS; Yes. But he got a great job. It shows a lot of fun.
MACCALLUM: We are going to talk to him in just a minute. So, he's coming up tonight. Thank you both.
HUCKABEE: Thank you.
MACCALLUM: Great to have you here.
SANDERS: You bet. Thank you.
MACCALLUM: Let's get a life look at the Senate floor tonight. Democrats holding hours long talk on the issue of gun violence tonight. Twenty-twenty Democrats also tackling the issue on the campaign trail. Some are calling for confiscation of assault rifles.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. KAMALA HARRIS, D-CALIF., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: They are weapons of war. With no place on the streets of the civil society.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: We have Michael Knowles and Juan Williams coming up next.
MACCALLUM: So right now, about two dozen Democratic senators are participating in a talk-a-thon on the Senate floor to raise awareness on the issue of gun violence, they say. It is also, of course, a very hot topic on the campaign trail.
Twenty-twenty hopeful Kamala Harris doubling down on her call to force gun owners to sell their assault weapons to the government.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS: I do believe that we need to do buybacks, and I will tell you why. First of all, let's be clear about what assault weapons are. They have been designed to kill a lot of human beings quickly. They are weapons of war. With no place on the streets of a civil society. I've seen assault weapons kill babies and police officers.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: She joins nearly every other 2020 candidate calling for buybacks, including Beto O'Rourke, who insist that Texans actually really like the idea.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FMR. REP. BETO O'ROURKE, D-TX, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Even from those Texans who own AR-15s, they've told me this themselves, I don't need this. I don't need it to hunt. I don't need to protect myself. It was fun to use. I like taking it out to the range.
But if giving this back or cutting it to pieces or selling it to the government helps to keep us safer, then by all means, let's do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: Here now, Michael Knowles, host of the Daily Wire's the Michael Knowles show, and Juan Williams, Fox News political analyst and co-host of The Five. Michael, what you think about what Beto has to say there?
MICHAEL KNOWLES, HOST, DAILY WIRE: Well, I think assault weapon is an up term because I think he's taking a flamethrower to a field of strawmen.
The reason that they -- Kamala, Beto, all of them are using deceptive languages because they don't really have an argument here. So, to use the term assault weapon, which is not some special category of firearm. Every weapon is an assault weapon. They are intended to assault people. They're using the term mandatory buyback.
MACCALLUM: Well, they talk about AK-47s and AR-15s, and guns that shoot very quickly like the ones that was used in Dayton and killed nine people in 30 seconds.
KNOWLES: They're talk --
MACCALLUM: I think that's what they're talking about.
KNOWLES: They're talking about semiautomatic rifles --
KNOWLES: -- which killed proportionally very few people per year, compared to pistols, which kill 22, 23 times as many people per year. They use the term mandatory buyback. I didn't buy my gun from the government. They can't buy that gun back. And if it's mandatory, they are not buying it, they are coercing me to give it to them. They are stealing it. It's confiscation.
They won't use that blunt language because they know it's a loser with the American people and it's unconstitutional.
MACCALLUM: So, Juan, politically, is the winner for these candidates, is it a winner in places like Michigan, in Pennsylvania, and Ohio, or even Texas as Beto O'Rourke seems to think it is.
JUAN WILLIAMS, POLITICAL ANALYST: I don't know about that because I was a little surprised by that.
WILLIAMS: But I will say that if you look at the polls, it's pretty clear, the American people want the politicians to do something. And when it comes to things like universal background checks you're up almost 90 percent, Martha, of the American people think it's a good idea.
Red flag laws, for someone who maybe has mental issues or has been engaged in assaulting a spouse, people think that's a good idea. People also think they know what assault weapons are.
So, I listened to Michael. Michael says you have to be careful, and I agree. Bat what Beto is talking about is assault rifles. And when you ask the American people in polling it's interesting even people who are members of the NRA, people who are self-identified as Republicans say, they think, you know, given what happened in El Paso and what happened in Dayton, I could go on, you know at Las Vegas, somebody should do something.
MACCALLUM: I mean, you know, you look at what they did in Australia, right? They bought back 650,000 firearms. And since that, in those seven years, they have had a 42 percent decrease in homicide rates and a 57 percent decrease in suicide rates, compared with seven years prior, Michael.
KNOWLES: Again, I wouldn't call it a buyback, they confiscated weapons. And we have a Second Amendment in this country. It's certainly true, Juan, that people like the idea of background checks, they like the idea of red flag laws, they like the idea especially of doing something.
KNOWLES: But when you get into the particulars of it, all of a sudden, people don't like it very much. The AR-15 is one of the most popular guns in the country.
MACCALLUM: That's for sure.
KNOWLES: I don't think that's going to be a very big winner with the American people.
KNOWLES: And what this shows you, what Beto O'Rourke's comments show you, are that when Democrats tell you they don't want to take your guns, Beto O'Rourke just a three of four weeks ago said, I'm not going to take anyone's gun. Now all of a sudden, he says, heck, yes, I'm going to take your AR-15.
MACCALLUM: Yes. He says, heck, yes. That's exactly --
WILLIAMS: But I think I don't --
MACCALLUM: I just want to put this up an Arizona store, and then I'll get your response, Juan. An Arizona store has sold out of what they called their Beto special. It is the Alpha Dog Firearms Facebook post. It says, "Our $349.99 AR deal sold out in less than four hours. We're trying to process the orders and work on getting more special deal for our good friend gun grabber Beto."
WILLIAMS: So, again, to Michael's point, I think that people who are fans of the AR or all of these other weapons that I would call assault weapons, no doubt will think, no, they are coming to grab my gun.
But for most Americans, they think no, you know what? We don't need these weapons of war on the streets of America. Even if you are a hunter, you don't need an AR-47 to shoot a dear.
So what people are saying, and these overwhelmingly not the people who are aficionados of these weapons, but people who may own a handgun, also think, yes, we need to take steps to keep these hands -- these guns out of the hands of dangerous people.
MACCALLUM: All right. Senate talk-a-thon, they got talk-a-thons. They're talking and talking and talking. Tonight, we'll see if it actually gets anywhere. Thank you, gentlemen. Good to see both of you tonight.
Coming up next, the story exclusive that you do not want to miss, one on one with Sean Spicer. Boy. Ruffles galore on Mr. Spicer. We are going to tease him a little bit, talk to him right after this, coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was going bongos with the bongos. What were you doing in there? It was like being attacked by a swarm of wasps. I have no idea.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MACCALLUM: It's like a highlighter explosion out there. Sean Spicer making quite an appearance on "Dancing with the Stars" last night to the song "Spice Up Your Life." The judges who are, you know, always so tactful, they told him he was off beat most of the dance and said that it was like he was being attacked by a swarm of wasps.
Otherwise, though, they did give him some positive remarks. The Daily Beast headline said this today. "Can't unsee. Sean Spicer has most embarrassing 'Dancing with the Stars' debut ever. Period."
Here now exclusively, Sean Spicer, former White House press secretary. Sean, so you slept on it, you got through it, you know, you got -- how do you feel today?
SEAN SPICER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Well, I'm back in blue. More comfortable. Look, I went into this, Martha, saying I was going to have fun, get out of my element --
MACCALLUM: And you did.
SPICER: I've done both. I had a blast. And you know what? Like playing the bongos to the Spice Girls with a lime green shirt that's cut down the chest are four things that I never thought I would ever do in my life.
MACCALLUM: I mean, put it this way. You've got a story for life. And you know, who knows. And I do think I do agree with you, I watched the video today, that, you know, I'm sure that you improved quite a bit from when you walked in the room.
We did a slow-motion version that we want to show, just to kind of get a look at your moves here. And, you know what, I think when you dance --
SPICER: That's generous.
MACCALLUM: You know what, you need to like, it's like that full extension, you committed to it. So, I think it wasn't -- it really wasn't that bad. That's my assessment. I'm not one of the "Dancing with the Stars" judges.
SPICER: Well, thank you, I wish you were a judge. Look, I actually, you are right, though. From where I started to where we're tonight, Lindsay, my pro was a phenomenal teacher. She's so patient and --
MACCALLUM: She's great.
SPICER: -- and understands how to teach. And so, I came a long way. I would draw a power with how we did last night.
MACCALLUM: How did you end up with "Spice Up Your Life?" The song, "Spice Up Your Life"?
SPICER: Listen, I mean, they --
MACCALLUM: Did they assign it?
SPICER: I think this is payback from everybody that -- yes, of course. I didn't choose the song or the shirt, I mean, none of it. Believe me. So, I think this was sort of a payback from everyone.
MACCALLUM: So, didn't choose the shirt. And did you get any choice, like when they showed it to you, what was your react -- what was your reaction?
SPICER: No, no, no. It was like, this is what your first week's outfit is. And I saw it on Friday when I got to L.A.
MACCALLUM: So, I guess, you know, one of the questions is -- how -- you know, when you look at this going forward, right, so they don't eliminate anyone yet.
MACCALLUM: And it's pretty much you against, you've got to beat Lamar Odom again. And I looked at his video, because I don't think that's gotten a lot of attention today. But I think this is going to make you feel belter. Let's play some of this.
That's a little -- that's a little stiff, from Lamar Odom. Great, you know, basketball player, for sure. But, so what can we expect next week, do you know yet what your song is and what you're going to wear, for starters?
SPICER: Yes. I know all three things. I know the song, the dance, and the outfit. It's -- we're dancing a tango next week, which is going to be a lot more difficult. I'm a lot more tastefully dressed.
It's going to be really, really challenging, there's no question about it. I've got to make sure that I practice as hard as I can all week long to be out for it. But the real difference next week, it's not just the judges, America can participate. I've literally launched a campaign. If you go to SpicerArnold.com.
SPICER: I'm treating this like my old campaign dates, we're running a bumper sticker, t-shirts, we launched a campaign video today that's on the web site --
SPICER: -- making a little bit more fun of myself. So, I'm going to have a blast.
MACCALLUM: You won't.
SPICER: I'm going to have fun. I've enjoyed this. It's a fun -- and the beauty of it is we root for each other. Those other 11 were fantastic dancers.
MACCALLUM: It does look like you have some good camaraderie. And you're asking -- you're asking for help from Jesus, as well.
SPICER: Yes, it's for fun. Yes, I need every help, all of the help I can get right now, you know.
MACCALLUM: Fair. Fair. Always a good idea.
SPICER: And look, I brought -- I brought -- you know, I brought -- one of the things that was really cool for me is, I worked with a group called the Yellow Ribbon Fund, and I brought Brandon Dobson (Ph) last night who is an injured warrior. Him and his wife who is (Inaudible) but I brought them out and they got to share the experience.
MACCALLUM: And it's great.
SPICER: And it was really cool getting to bring one of our injured service members and giving him the experience of --
MACCALLUM: That's great.
SPICER: -- staying here for the night and enjoying it.
MACCALLUM: It's good for you.
SPICER: So, it's been so fun.
MACCALLUM: Good for you. You've been having fun, and it looks like you're having a blast. We'll watch next week. Come back and give us your assessment. And I'll judge next week, as well.
SPICER: Thank you. I will, I promise. Bye.
MACCALLUM: Good to see you. Sean Spicer.
Coming up next, as we have been telling you before, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's political future hinges on an election that is really too close to call at this hour. We're going to go live to Israel for the latest update on the voting there, next.
MACCALLUM: Election in Israel the counting still underway at this hour in these high stakes election which will determine the political fate of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who has been in office for 10 years.
Our foreign correspondent Trey Yingst is live in Tel Aviv tonight with the latest. Hi, Trey.
TREY YINGST, CORRESPONDENT: Martha, good evening.
The preliminary exit polls are in and things are not looking good for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. While he still could pull off a surprise victory tonight against his main opponent Benny Gantz of the Blue and White Party.
Polls indicate he is not going to have the 61-seat majority in the Israeli Knesset in order for him to govern here in Israel. The key here is a third party. The party our house Israel led by Netanyahu's former defense minister and long-time rival Avigdor Lieberman.
Lieberman according to exit polls is expected to get anywhere between eight and 10 seats in the Israeli Knesset. This is going to make him the king maker in all of this. Basically, deciding who the next prime minister of Israel is.
You can hear some of the Likud music behind me. This is theme music for the party. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expected here shortly. He is going to make a short and important speech according to his spokesman.
Back to you, Martha.
MACCALLUM: All right. Trey, thank you very much. Trey Yingst will be watching that throughout the evening tonight as that tally continues to come in a tough election tonight for Benjamin Netanyahu.
And finally, this evening, a new episode of the Untold Story podcast is available. It features Andrew Pollack who lost his daughter Meadow in the Parkland school shooting. Pollack believes that the Obama administration rules to some extent tied the school's hands when it came to discipline and allowed the Parkland shooter to stay out of jail. Controversial. It deserves a listen. I hope you will.
You can subscribe to the Untold Story podcast at foxnewspodcast.com or wherever you listen. New one up every week.
That is “The Story” for tonight on this Tuesday, September 17, 2019. But as you know, “The Story” goes on and so we will look forward to seeing you back here tomorrow night at 7 o'clock. My friend, Tucker Carlson up next from Washington, D.C.
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