Sen. Graham on border debate in wake of drowned migrant father and daughter

This is a rush transcript from "The Story," June 26, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, ANCHOR: All right, everybody. Breaking tonight in Chicago, a restaurant is now speaking out about one of their employees spitting on the president's son, Eric Trump. You're going to hear from them and from Laura Trump tonight who is here to respond. But first, this evening. Good evening, everybody.  I'm Martha MacCallum, and this is "The Story" of the night.

The battle for 2020 kicking off in a big way. As the first round of candidate prepare to get on that stage. And you can be sure that this tragic photo will be a focus. A father and his daughter drown trying to cross the Rio Grande.

Beto O'Rourke will be on that stage tonight from Texas. He has blamed the president, tweeting this. "Trump is responsible for these deaths." And here is Elizabeth Warren, also on stage in two hours.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN, D-MASS., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: But a government that can't tell the difference between the threat posed by a terrorist, a criminal, and a little girl is not a government that is keeping us safe and it is certainly not a government that reflects our values.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Democratic senators on the Hill today went after the men who run the overwhelmed Customs and Border Patrol.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRIAN HASTINGS, CHIEF, UNITED STATES LAW ENFORCEMENT OPERATIONS: We provide three meals, hot meals a day, and snacks are unlimited to those in our --

(CROSSTALK)

SEN. MAGGIE HASSAN, D-N.H.: You do understand that, that is in direct contradiction with the news reports that we have been reading in from what lawyers who have been visiting these children and interviewing them are telling us.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: So, that whole back and forth did not sit well with some of the Republicans who were in the hearing today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. RICK SCOTT, R-FLA.: We don't want to secure border, then we want to come -- then, people want to come complain that you're not doing your job.  I think it's disgusting what people are doing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: On that hot story tonight, and on the latest on the coming Mueller testimony, I'm joined now by Senator Lindsey Graham, chairman of the Judiciary Committee. Chairman, good to see you tonight. Thank you for being here.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-S.C.: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: So, I want to get first your response to this blame pointing over this tragic photo, and what it tells you about where we are in this -- in this battle?

GRAHAM: One is disgusting, this is not the president's fault. People from Central America are being enticed to come here in record numbers, where we double the number of people have come this year versus last, at this stage of last year. And we're going to double that again.

We're going to spend four point something billion to deal with the humanitarian crisis if you don't change the laws, they'll keep coming.

I hate it very much that this father and daughter died. But, they should - - they should stay in their country, we should help them in their country.  This journey they're taking is very dangerous.

So, to my Democratic colleagues, if we don't change our law, you're going to have millions of people overrunning our border. And what are you going to do about that?

MACCALLUM: Yes. We're going to talk more about tonight. And you know, everybody is waiting for Congress to come up with some kind of solution.  It's been decades, I mean. And as they -- you can tell the frustration that I hear in your voice and we heard it today on the Hill.

(CROSSTALK)

GRAHAM: It's ridiculous. Yes.

MACCALLUM: And these people are pawns, sadly, in this political --

(CROSSTALK)

GRAHAM: Can I just say this?

MACCALLUM: Yes, go ahead.

GRAHAM: Here is our law. If you get one foot in the United States, you claim asylum, you're entitled to a hearing. The hearing is like three years away. People don't show up. If you're bringing the small child, we can only hold the child for 20 days. We don't want to separate families, so we let the entire family unit go.

Word is out on the street in Central America. If you small -- bring a small child to the United States and ask for asylum, you're never going to be sent back, you stay in America forever. And until we change that law, nothing changes.

MACCALLUM: And it leads to some of the tragedies that we're seeing.

GRAHAM: Yes.

MACCALLUM: Because people feel that it's going to work and it entices them, as you say. I want to talk to you about the Mueller testimony that's coming up on July 17th. I thought he was pretty emphatic when he said -- you know, my testimony is this report.

GRAHAM: Yes.

MACCALLUM: Then, Jerrold Nadler kept coming out and saying, you know -- no, he's going to show up, he's going to testify.

So, I'm curious what you think transpired what. What do you think motivated Robert Mueller to accept what is -- by their own description, a friendly subpoena an agreement to come.

GRAHAM: Really, I don't know. But I do know this. If he stays within the four corners of the document, what good is his testimony? If he goes outside the document, he's going to get killed politically. Because then he becomes a political commentator. So, if he does what he said he would do in his press conference, refer back to the document, this is just a political circus. This is not about trying to find the truth, this is about setting up impeachment of President Trump.

The biggest loser of Mueller coming into the House, I think, it's Nancy Pelosi. Because it's going to be harder for her to control her troops after Mueller testifies.

MACCALLUM: You know, I mean -- I mean, I'm wondering about his staff, because they obviously were very disgruntled with Bill Barr's assessment.  And you know, sort of nudge, perhaps, nudged their leader to -- you know, get out there and speak up on their behalf. Do you think that, that is part of what's at work here because we're hearing reports about how they're writing books now and many of them are trying to -- you know, land some big jobs with law firms on the -- you know, with this, at the top of their resume that they worked with the special counsel.

GRAHAM: I don't know what motivates Mr. Mueller to come in. Maybe it's a subpoena, maybe he wants to come in, but I know this. He told the country that he would confine his comments to the document. The document speaks for itself. I hope that's what he does because if he does any more than that, it's going to become a political circus.

And the president asked a really good question, when does this end? Mr. President, this ends with your re-election. Once you win in 2020, this ends, but between now and then, they're going to do everything they can to undermine your presidency. They're going to retry the Mueller case.

When Mueller issued his report, that was it for me. I don't trust Jerry Nadler to find the truth. I did trust Mueller, Mueller has spoken. But it's really not about finding, the truth is about destroying Donald Trump's presidency. This is going to blow up in their face.

MACCALLUM: Well, the President had a long conversation with Maria Bartiromo this morning. And he made a comment that raised some eyebrows just in terms of understanding what exactly he was -- he was talking about.  And I want to play it for you and maybe you can explain it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP (via telephone): Robert Mueller, they work for him, and the two lovers were together, and they had texts back and forth, and e-mail back and forth.

(CROSSTALK)

MARIA BARTIROMO, FOX BUSINESS NETWORK ANCHOR: What happen, we have been seen it all? I mean, you did -- you gave William Barr the authority to dig.

TRUMP: He -- you know why? Because Mueller terminated them illegally. He terminated the e-mails, he terminated all of the stuff between Strzok and Page.

That was something that I had never heard before. That Robert Mueller terminated these e-mails, destroyed them in some way. What happen? What's your understanding of that?

GRAHAM: Well, it's my basic understanding that Peter Strzok turned his cell phone over to his employer and it's somehow the information got erased. I don't know how that happened. That will be a good question.

But the president's frustrated about Strzok and Page, and McCabe and Comey.  And here is what I tell the president. Mr. Horowitz is going to give a report soon about whether or not the FISA Court was defrauded. And I promised the president, we're going to get to the bottom of what happened.  I'm not going to get in the way of Mr. Durham. Mr. Durham is a U.S. attorney looking at the criminality, did somebody violate the law when it came to the counterintelligence investigation of the FISA warrant.

But my job is to lay out the truth the best I can. Mueller has spoken about Trump. Now, it's time to find out about those who investigated Trump.

MACCALLUM: Senator Lindsey Graham, thank you very much, sir. Good to see you.

GRAHAM: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: Coming up, as the clock ticks to the start of the first democratic debate tonight, how are the candidates getting ready? Here is a hint. Karl Rove and Richard Goodstein, Sean Spicer and Doug Thornell are all lift waiting -- lift -- weight lifting, she tried to say. And getting pumped up. So, we'll be right back with them.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: Here is the question tonight after tonight. How many of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates will still be standing? Because it becomes a question how many of these are just sort of vanity projects that the financial backers will dry up and go away if they don't do well. And how many of them can actually stick in there and go the distance here?

Here's a quick preview of their pre-debate warm-ups on the trail this week.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR, D-MINN., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The goal at the debate is to be able to make my case to the American people.

JULIAN CASTRO, D-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have a strong vision for the country's future to be the smartest, the healthiest, the fairest, and the most prosperous nation on earth. And I can beat Donald Trump.

BETO O'ROURKE, D-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: To our benefit as a country if I'm your president, I will continue to listen to you.

WARREN: I'm looking forward to a chance to talk about why I'm in this race.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MACCALLUM: So, what are our ace team of campaign veterans looking at to see who stays and who goes maybe after tonight? Here now, Karl Rove, former deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush and a Fox News contributor. Sean Spicer, senior adviser and spokesman of the America First Action. Richard Goodstein, former adviser to the Clinton presidential campaigns. And Doug Thornell is a principal at SKDK Political and a Democratic strategist.

Doug, let me start with you. Who do you -- who are you watching closely tonight? Because there are some folks on that stage who maybe people would have expected to have -- to have done a little bit better at this point?  Who may have a big moment they need to?

DOUG THORNELL, PRINCIPAL, HEAD OF SKDK POLITICAL: Yes. It's an important night for Beto O'Rourke. You know, he got into this race with a lot of electricity and high expectations. You know, his campaign has sort of -- you know, not been what I think people expected. So, he -- I think needs a breakthrough moment tonight.

Cory Booker is another person to watch. He's of compelling senator, I think he's got a great story. But again, he's another one who is it -- hasn't quite broken through yet. So, take a look, watch those two. And also don't sleep on Julian Castro. He gets very strong reviews on the trail. I expect him to also have a good night as well.

MACCALLUM: Yes. I think, I'm keeping a close eye on Cory Booker, because, you know, I just -- I think, Richard, a lot of people felt that he was going to be this rising star. You know he had a couple of awkward moments.  The, you know, Kavanaugh hearing comes to mind and Spartacus.

But, he's had a really tough time getting traction. But he says he's not worried about it.

RICHARD GOODSTEIN, FORMER ADVISER, CLINTON CAMPAIGN: Think back to where we were at for the first debate in 2015, first Republican debate. We were talking about Jeb Bush and Scott Walker as kind of two and three. Right.

MACCALLUM: Yes.

GOODSTEIN: So, and think about you just had Lindsey Graham on who got past the first couple debates. But ultimately, couldn't really kind of make the distance. I do think Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar, these are people who really are people have substance academically and their political careers.  But look, Elizabeth Warren, the spotlight is going to be on her demonstrating that she's electable. There's still this concern that whether it's a woman or somebody who's relatively liberal can stand toe-to- toe.

MACCALLUM: Yes.

GOODSTEIN: I do think that Donald Trump coined her phrase when he said about that woman who accused him of rape, she's not my type. I think Elizabeth Warren is going to say he's not my type, and I wouldn't be surprised if that becomes a bit of a bumper sticker for her.

MACCALLUM: OK, well, we'll see if that happens. Here's Elizabeth Warren on the campaign trail today in Homestead, Florida. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WARREN: We speak out as moral citizens not just of the United States but of the world. We will stay here at Homestead until this facility releases these children and close this down.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Karl, that's what she had to say today and I'm it's worth noting that she left right after that speech. This is a big issue for this campaign and probably the big issue tonight.

KARL ROVE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: It's also -- yes, it's also worth noting she wasn't there when President Barack Obama opened the detention facility in his office during his time in office.

So we're going to have a lot of -- we're going to see a lot of venting tonight on this immigration issue but it's going to be coming from people who have had a chance to do something to both help with the humanitarian crisis and try and find common ground and resolve this problem. I'm a big advocate of comprehensive immigration reform. I believe in immigration.

MACCALLUM: I think most of the country is a pretty big advocate of some kind -- you know, and it's ridiculous.

ROVE: Absolutely. But we're dealing with a much different flow of immigrants today than we've dealt with in the past. Family units coming up from Central America being shepherded up here by coyotes who are employed by the cartels and this is not a healthy situation for our country or for Central America.

MACCALLUM: Yes. I think it's worth playing this from Barack Obama who was a candidate at the time, in the Democratic debate on November 15, 2007.  Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT: The Bush administration has done nothing to come roll the problem that we have.  We've had five million undocumented workers come over the borders since George Bush took office. It has become an extraordinary problem and the reason the American people are concerned is because they are seeing their own economic position slip away.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: I mean, that could be President Trump's words, Sean Spicer.  It's amazing how the narrative has completely changed on this on the Democrats Party.

SEAN SPICER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Absolutely. And I just want to -- one of the things that's interesting about tonight is that while we're calling it a debate and while it's labeled a debate, it's basically a commercial right? So every candidate gets 60 seconds to make their case and a 30-second rebuttal.

So when we look at what's going to happen tonight, Elizabeth Warren is clearly the star on that stage. Does she live up to the expectations?  Does she exceed the expectations or does she not rise up to them. I hear all these candidates in the clips talk about wanting to make their case and explain their vision. They don't have time to do that. The question is can they make an impression.

And I think, my issue -- my second thing is not only will she rise or fall after tonight, but of all the candidates we talk about somebody will be that other person, right. Of the nine remaining, one other will be. The second thing I think is important is will the focus be on President Trump and attacks on him or will it be on Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders.

Because for every of the other 18 candidates that's not named Biden or Sanders, they have to ask themselves a simple question which is how bad do you want to be president because you can't win unless you take down Biden and or Sanders to become number one. Just attacking Trump isn't going to get you there.

So if they don't start focusing on the people who are in one and two position, they're never going to find themselves there. So how those attacks pan out is going to be important. The last thing, Martha, I think is going to be important to me to watch is what role do the moderators play.

Too often the moderators become the story. Do they allow the candidates to be the story tonight and the -- and the focus as opposed to themselves?

MACCALLUM: All right, great points. Doug, before we go, just a final thought on how differently what we're going to hear tonight is on the immigration issue than what we heard from President Barack Obama two-term president.

THORNELL: Yes, well, look, comprehensive immigration reform has been something that both parties have tried to get done four years. President Bush give Karl and his team credit. They tried to get it done when he was in office. It almost ended John McCain's chances at the presidency.

President Obama, we did pass a comprehensive bipartisan immigration bill in the Senate. Lindsey Graham voted for it. And I'd like to see more leadership out of everyone in Washington but I do think it starts at the top with the president and bringing both sides together and saying look, we got to get this passed.

MACCALLUM: Well, I just think it's striking how similar what the President is saying and what Barack Obama was saying are, and I don't think you're going to hear you know, that kind of -- that kind of line of thinking tonight up there but we'll see. Gentlemen thank you. Great to have all of you with us tonight.

THORNELL: Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: You bet.

GOODSTEIN: Thanks so much.

MACCALLUM: So a waitress arrested for spitting in Eric Trump's face. An exclusive tonight with Laura Trump ahead and why is Alexandria Ocacio- Cortez trying so hard to stop Wayfair, a furniture company from sending beds and 1,600 mattresses to for the children to sleep on at these centers.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So tonight, Democratic Congressman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is being accused by fellow members of Congress of harming the effort to solve the border crisis by opposing border funding legislation much of which would go to help make these facilities better and safer. Yet she is showing support tonight for the employees of home goods company where Wayfair who staged a walkout today.

They are protesting their company selling beds to a nonprofit that provides them to the migrant camps along the border. AOC writing on Twitter in part Wayfair workers couldn't stomach they were making beds to cage children.  This is what solidarity looks like, a reminder that everyday people have real power as long as we are brave enough to use it.

And you just saw that picture, right, of the kids sleeping on the floor.  Correspondent Molly Line is in Boston where the walkout took place today.  Hi Molly, good evening.

MOLLY LINE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Good evening, Martha. You said it, hundreds of people here packed on to Copley Square. They were a combination of supporters as well as Wayfair employees, and they were essentially protesting the sale of these beds by Wayfair to a contractor that runs a migrant detention facility in Texas.

A variety of signs a really loud and raucous group here on the common today, some chanting no profit from prison camps. Participants told us some 500 plus wayfarer employees signed on a letter to the company leaders expressing "concern and anger about the atrocities being committed at our Southern Border citing mistreatment of migrants seeking asylum arguing Wayfair should have no part in enabling supporting or profiting from the practice. Here's what several Wayfair employees told us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MADELINE HOWARD, EMPLOYEE, WAYFAIR: It's our job to make it as hard as possible for them to operate these camps. And what we're doing is an attempt to basically throw a wrench to what they're attempting to do.

We don't think the camp should run at all. We don't think they should exist at all and this is our way of telling them that.

The biggest thing is we just don't want to profit of this. You know, whatever profit has come to this, we just want to get into the hands of folks who can do something positive about this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LINE: The offending order according to the employees was for $200,000 worth of bedroom furniture for a facility that could potentially detain thousands of migrant children. The contractor BCFS that put in this order responded, "we believe youth should sleep in beds with mattresses."

The Wayfair walkout Twitter handle also posted a letter of response from wayfarer executives who explained as business leaders "we also believe in the importance of respecting diversity of thought within our organization and across our customer base writing, as a retailer it is standard practice to fulfill orders for all customers and we believe it is our business to sell to any customer who is acting within the laws of the countries within which we operate employees have also called in the company on Wayfair to donate specifically to a nonprofit organization that helps with the legal representation for migrants.

Now, Wayfair has made a $100,000 donation but they made it to the Red Cross. And in speaking with some of the employees that walked out today, that is not what they wanted to see happen in that regards as far as which charity is concerned. Martha?

MACCALLUM: Molly Line, thank you very much. Molly Line in Boston.  Joining me now, Jessica Tarlov, Senior Director of Research at Bustle.com and a Fox News Contributor. Jess, thank you very much for being here tonight.

JESSICA TARLOV, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Thank you for having me.

MACCALLUM: I mean, I can't -- I can't figure this out. I mean these -- so they're -- children are sleeping on the concrete floor, right? We heard this, we read this in all of these expose.

TARLOV: Yes.

MACCALLUM: So if I'm one of these children and I'm watching these people in Boston walking out of Wayfair, I'm saying, send me the mattress, 1,600 mattresses, 1,000 beds, here's the receipt from way fare of this order that came through from this company which is a government provider. The government needs these things to make this facility more comfortable for the children that are there. How is this logical?

TARLOV: I think there are a few issues at play here. I personally am not supportive of the wayfarer walkout but I am supportive of politicians using their capital to empower and embolden citizens who take action to push companies to do the moral thing or the right thing. I'm glad that Wayfair made the donation to the Red Cross. I think we're getting a little nitpicky about what organization it's going to since the Red Cross does wonderful work there.

But I think the conversation that AOC and a lot of her fellow progressives were having about the border bill, the 4.5 billion that ended up going through is that it's difficult to parse these things because when you are just giving a lump sum, it can be administered in a lot of different ways.  And we haven't seen meaningful commitment on the part of the Trump administration to change the way that these migrant camps are being run.

MACCALLUM: Look, it's a mess.

TARLOV: It's a total mess.

MACCALLUM: Let's watch these people who are saying that you know, the crisis on the border is manufactured, OK. Play that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WARREN: This so-called crisis at the border is faked.

SEN. KAMALA HARRIS, D-CALIF., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is a crisis of his own making because it was a campaign pledge.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: You know, Kirstjen Nielsen, in the spring, said that she knew this was going to happen. She said there's going to be a systemic meltdown because there's simply too many people coming across the border and she predicted that there would be more fatal incidents happening, right.

So now they're trying to scramble and you know, these overwhelmed facilities trying to find ways to make people more comfortable in them.  How is it -- you know, I'm watching these people who are perfectly, you know, clean and well-dressed walking around Boston depriving these people of mattresses, for God sakes?

TARLOV: Again, because they are giving mattresses, is it different --

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: But AOC thinks that's a great idea.

TARLOV: AOC also thought that Amazon shouldn't come to Queens. I don't agree with AOC on a lot of these things. But I think that when you do look to the policies that were implemented this year, or tolerance policy, for instance, and what was going on before the midterms --

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: But that's the thing. You know, I'm just so mad about the way, you know, you approach the whole argument, there needs to be a solution.

TARLOV: I would --

MACCALLUM: This House bill is different than the Senate bill.

TARLOV: I know.

MACCALLUM: I mean, it's ridiculous.

TARLOV: Well, that's going to be difficult. Yes. It's going to be really difficult. They have to get those billions of dollars to the border at this moment. I was pleased to see through Republicans crossed over to vote for it. Will Hurd whose district going, I think 40 percent of the border that we're talking at this detention facility is there.

But the larger point about people pressuring companies to do the moral thing, I do think that is important. And we saw Bank of America today said that they were going to lend --

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: I'm just not sure that it's a moral to do what your furniture company, you have an order to fill, and it's going to allow people to 1,600 kids to sleep in an actual bed. I have a hard time figuring how that (Inaudible).

TARLOV: But again, it's not just that, but we do know that organizations and companies are playing a bigger role in civil society now and they need to put their money towards causes that matter. I want to see more donations, more attention on this --

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Yes, I mean, if it's something that hurt someone's health, that's something I could completely get on board with that.

TARLOV: Yes.

MACCALLUM: I understand this is not -- this is to help people sleep in a bed. Jessica --

(CROSSTALK)

TARLOV: It's complicated. Thank you for having me.

MACCALLUM: It is complicated.

TARLOV: Yes.

MACCALLUM: Thank you. Coming up, Lara Trump is here to respond to the attack on her husband, Eric, by a waitress in Chicago. This is just disgusting. I don't know who does this kind of thing.

We're also going to ask you about this growing controversy and the questions arising around this woman's story and her way of talking about sexual attacks, kind of bizarre as well.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MAXINE WATERS, D-CALIF.: If you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, in a gasoline station, you get put and you create a crowd.

(APPLAUSE)

WATERS: And you push back on them, and you tell them they are not welcome.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Remember that? So, for more than a year, protesters have been answering that call to action from Congresswoman Maxine Waters to heckle supporters of the president and his policies in public, outside movie theaters, restaurants, even in their driveways.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If kids don't eat in peace, you don't eat in peace.

PAM BONDI, FORMER ATTORNEY GENERAL, FLORIDA: Why don't you leave my husband alone?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why are you separating families?

BONDI: Why don't you leave my husband alone?

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Preexisting conditions, Pam Bondi. Shame on you. Shame on you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: Last night, anger boiled over again at a cocktail lounge in Chicago where Secret Service agents had to arrest a waitress who spit in the face of the president's son, Eric Trump.

Joining me now this is Eric's wife, Lara Trump, who is also a senior adviser to the Trump 2020 campaign. Lara, the first thing I asked you was, were you there?

LARA TRUMP, SENIOR ADVISER, TRUMP 2020 CAMPAIGN: Fortunately, I was not because as any pregnant woman will tell you, their hormones were raging and I would've had a different reaction than my husband.

But you know what, I have to give him so much credit because unprovoked, this woman came up to him, literally spit in his face and had some really nasty things to say to him.

And he played it so calm and so cool, did not press charges against this woman, which I think a lot of people would have done. But it probably would've been very hard for me to remain calm in that situation.

MACCALLUM: Yes. I mean, did he call you right after and say what happened?

TRUMP: Yes.

MACCALLUM: What did he said?

TRUMP: He was very shocked but you know what he said what an incredible job the Chicago P.D. did, and that they were so professional in the way they handled things.

MACCALLUM: Yes.

TRUMP: He said the mayor was great as well, called him as well. But honestly, you saw there, Maxine Waters telling people to get up in their faces, and Eric Holder you remember saying kick them when they're down.

You know, this is the new normal for the left and it's acceptable, for some reason, whenever you are fighting on the side of the Democrats to do things like this. I can't imagine this ever happening to Chelsea Clinton, to Sasha and Malia Obama. This is disgusting. There's no --

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: No, and it shouldn't.

TRUMP: There's no reason that you should ever spit in anyone's face.

MACCALLUM: It shouldn't happen to anyone. It's just uncivilized behavior no matter which side you're on.

This is the statement. She's been placed on leave. This is the statement from The Aviary. It says "This degrading act lowers the tenor of our debate. To some it might feel good but it's unlikely to serve any larger purpose. We hope this incident can illuminate the certain absurdity of the discourse in our politics. As fellow Americans and citizens, we should all aim higher."

TRUMP: Yes.

MACCALLUM: What do you think?

TRUMP: You know what, that is 100 percent accurate, and there has never been a report like this that you've seen coming from anybody in the Republican Party. Sadly, it comes from the other side. But we have to be better than this.

This is crazy, it's disgusting but again, I feel like my husband handled it so appropriately.

MACCALLUM: It's kind of him not to press charges. I think a lot of people would have. But maybe better to just drop it and move on.

This woman is accusing the president of raping her in a dressing room at Bergdorf, but she has, you know, sort of a very odd. I've watched several of the interviews that she did. Her take on rape, I think is not anything like what anybody else would characterize it. Here she is with Anderson Cooper. And I want to get your campaign hat on and react to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

E. JEAN CARROLL, TRUMP ACCUSER: The word rape carries so many sexual connotations. This was not -- this was not sexual. It just -- it hurt. It just what -- you know --

(CROSSTALK)

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Well, I think most people think of rape as a -- I mean, it is a violent assault. It is not a sex --

(CROSSTALK)

CARROLL: I think most people think of rape as being sexy.

COOPER: Let's take a short break.

CARROLL: They think of the fantasies.

COOPER: We are going to take a quick break. If you can stick around, we'll talk more on the other side.

CARROLL: You are fascinating to talk to.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: I mean, that's just -- I don't know what to react --

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Well, there are a lot of us that don't know what to say to that. But it's campaign season again so all the people like this come out with crazy stories about the president. You know, you would've thought if this was a legitimate claim, we would've heard about it before now.

But here she is on Anderson Cooper and I don't even think Anderson knew what to make of that. It's like he wanted to go to the commercial.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: No. He wanted to get -- he wanted to, I think, OK, how am I going to respond to this.

TRUMP: Yes.

MACCALLUM: I think I need to wait until over the next commercial break here, you know. I mean, you're maybe right. She's got a book coming out, it's got a whole bunch of this --

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP: Of course, she does, they all have books coming out.

MACCALLUM: So, quick look at what the president said this morning. We are switching from very different topics here. This is at the Faith and Freedom event today because I know that women voters are one of your big focuses. Here is President Trump.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I actually think that we have the energy, like for instance, in the audience the other night, so many women for Trump, so many.

They did the same thing in 2016. Women, I'm not voting for Trump, they're not going to vote. And we got a tremendous -- I mean, the women came out, and it was incredible what happened against Hillary Clinton, a wonderful woman.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: I have asked you this several times, midterms, you know, women stayed home in some cases. The suburban vote, and there was a piece in the Wall Street Journal today saying, you know, he's got to win over these voters in the middle, the base is solid, the voters in the middle and a lot of them are women.

L. TRUMP: Yes.

MACCALLUM: What do you do?

L. TRUMP: No, a lot of them are women and I can tell you that the event we had last Tuesday night in Orlando was unlike anything -- I thought the enthusiasm in 2016 was incredible.

Martha, for this president, there is nothing like I felt in that arena, and so many women - and I always say it, women are going to come out and vote for this president because their life is better and they see life better for their kids down the road, and their family can afford more things now.

It's -- I just have never believed the polls when it comes to this president, and I've always known that women are going to vote for Donald Trump. He definitely has the enthusiasm on his side.

MACCALLUM: Well, you said it last time, you're saying it again.

L. TRUMP: Yes.

MACCALLUM: You are right last time, we'll see if you are right this time as we move forward. Lara, thank you.

L. TRUMP: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: Great to see you tonight. Coming up next, trouble in Toyland. Disney's "Toy Story 4" being blasted by feminists over what happened to Bo Peep. Jesse Watters, who is better to talk about Bo Peep than Jesse Watters? He's coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: So, Sarah Sanders announced that Friday is going to be her last day as White House press secretary. Over the last three years she has had plenty of contentious moments with the media.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't you have any empathy?

SARAH SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Jill, go ahead.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come on, Sarah, you are a parent. Don't you have any empathy for what these people are going through?

SANDERS: Jill -- Brian, gosh, settle down. I know you want to get some more TV comm, but that's not what this is about.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not that. It's not that.

SANDERS: That's not what I said and I know it's hard for you to understand even short sentences, I guess.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MACCALLUM: But now the White House reporter is making amends and secretly toasting her on a job well done. They kept the event private and one reporter even said to another, you better not say that I was here tonight.

Joining me now for Wednesdays with Watters, Jesse Watters, host of Watters World and co-host of "The Five." Yes, don't tell anyone that we're here to toast Sarah Sanders. I mean she, you know, I mean, I understand that some of them wanted more news conferences and press conferences.

JESSE WATTERS, FOX NEWS HOST: Sure.

MACCALLUM: The folks that work at the White House. I get that. But, you know, the lack of civility --

WATTERS: Right.

MACCALLUM: -- has been a bit of a theme tonight.

WATTERS: You are supposed to chase Sarah Sanders out of the restaurant, you're not supposed to have drinks and dinner with her.

MACCALLUM: Yes, I remember that.

WATTERS: Remember that?

MACCALLUM: Yes.

WATTERS: They have to dehumanize Sarah Sanders. Remember, they have to isolate her, they have to make her feel like not a real person because remember, she is the mouthpiece for the racist, traitorous Nazi president who cages kids, sexually assaults people, he is a madman.

So then to just raise a Pino and farewell the propagandist in the White House is totally hypocritical to all their friends and they got caught having a human moment with a fellow human --

MACCALLUM: Yes.

WATTERS: -- who works at the Trump White House. We are all Americans, right?

MACCALLUM: That's exactly right. And you know, nobody in D.C. turns down a free cocktail.

WATTERS: That's right.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Like if there is an event, like everybody is going to show up.

WATTERS: Exactly. There was a raw bar, Martha. I mean, come on.

MACCALLUM: Forget it. You got to show up. You can make dinner out of that.

WATTERS: You see these reporters at the ravages.

MACCALLUM: So, we'll see if it's going to be different under Stephanie Grisham.

WATTERS: You know, I don't think it will. It shall probably what do they have, a honeymoon period if you were the press secretary.

MACCALLUM: Yes, we'll see. We'll see.

WATTERS: But I mean, being the press secretary for any president is so hard. Being the press secretary for Donald J. Trump --

MACCALLUM: Yes, very difficult.

WATTERS: -- that's really hard.

MACCALLUM: Because he is also, is probably, you know, he likes to say most things himself.

WATTERS: Exactly.

MACCALLUM: "Toy Story 4", I'm a big "Toy Story" fan, I love these movies, I love the characters.

WATTERS: OK.

MACCALLUM: This one is getting slammed because Bo Peep is, what are they calling her? Let's talk about this writer, Stella Duffy says, let's talk about white feminism on display here. Look, Bo Peep is a feminist because she is wearing a pantsuit. No, she's not, she writes, she still going to fall in love, she is still going to have a happily ever after and that is not feminism.

WATTERS: Yes, you mean love is bad.

MACCALLUM: I'm so confused.

WATTERS: You can't fall in love if you are in "Toy Story." She is a British film critic, so, to me, she's probably jealous her country can't put out blockbusters. You know what I mean? That's really what's going on here.

And you know as an American, it's my job to criticize Hollywood, you know, you're from another country, you know, leave that to me. She is also upset because there's no black leads. I haven't heard any black viewers complain about this. I think they are enjoying the movie and eating the popcorn just this much.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Well, there are, I think there are two very prominent black actors but she complained that they were in yellow and green puppy outfits, you know, rather than being seen as themselves, but I'm here to explain that the movie is about toys.

WATTERS: Right.

MACCALLUM: And some of them are stuffed animals.

WATTERS: Right.

MACCALLUM: And they live in the kid's little boy's house.

WATTERS: Yes.

MACCALLUM: And they are his toys.

WATTERS: They're his toys.

MACCALLUM: They're not actual people.

WATTERS: Yes, I mean, I don't know what race Woody is. I never really thought about what race --

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: What he is white.

WATTERS: The dinosaur was.

MACCALLUM: Right.

WATTERS: But, you know, she is probably just looking for clicks.

MACCALLUM: Yes, there's the dinosaur, I'm not really sure.

WATTERS: That's -- yes, the dinosaur. I'm not sure what the race is on this.

MACCALLUM: So Jimmy Fallon is going to be live tonight, like almost like a news program because the executive producer says that is the urgency that this event called for, talking about the upcoming election, and they are just going to be live, live, live after all these debates because Jimmy has to sort of, commentate on what happens on the debate stage.

WATTERS: Do you think people are going to be still awake at that hour? The debate is on at nine, Martha.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: I know. We've been talking about how --

WATTERS: I know these people are boring. These are very boring candidates, staying up until, what, 11.30? He comes on, it's going to be tough. And you know Jimmy, it's like, you know, he is the, you know, the Edward R. Murrow of late night. We always want to hear what Jimmy has to say about climate and Medicare.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Well, he's going to compete with Stephen Colbert because a lot of the candidates have come on Stephen Colbert's show --

WATTERS: Right.

MACCALLUM: -- to announce. And so, if you are Jimmy Fallon and his producer, I'm sure you are saying --

(CROSSTALK)

WATTERS: But Fallon's ratings have been good because he stays out of politics, and now, he's trying to get in because Colbert is rising up.

(CROSSTALK)

MACCALLUM: Well, Colbert has been number one. Yes.

WATTERS: So, he's going to play that game.

MACCALLUM: Yes. All right. Well, we'll be watching. Thank you.

WATTERS: Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: That's Wednesdays with Watters for tonight. All right, so it is a scene that we all remember and it was so chilling. Gunshots ringing out at the congressional baseball game practice, wounding and almost killing Steve Scalise.

But tonight, he's on the field tonight for the big game and he is with us next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MACCALLUM: Just a chilling morning. Some 50 shots fired at Republican Congressman two years ago as they practiced for the annual congressional baseball game. Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise was hit that day and taken away in a stretcher, leaving him hospitalized for six weeks and enduring multiple surgeries over the past couple of years.

The long road to recovery has not stopped him from serving his country in Congress and it certainly didn't stop him from playing in the game of baseball. Last year, he made that incredible play in the first play of the game at second base. Everybody cheered and hugged him.

Here is a live look tonight at the congressional game that is going on right now. And before the game just a short time ago, I spoke with House minority whip Steve Scalise. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MACCALLUM: Congressman, welcome, great to see you tonight. What are your thoughts on how far you've come from last year to this year?

REP. STEVE SCALISE, R-LA.: Martha, great to be back with you. Wow, what a difference a year makes. You know, obviously, two years ago, it was touch and go if I was even going to make it. And last year, I got to actually come back out and play the game. And that was incredibly special but I really didn't have much movement.

Today, I can move a lot better, I'm still using one crutch for a lot of things, but I keep getting better every day, I feel great, you know, going to be able to go out there and play the Big League Ballpark. How much better doesn't get than that?

MACCALLUM: Well, I guess for your team, it would be better if they won, right? Because the Democrats have a pretty good record. I think they've won nine out of the last 10? Is that right?

SCALISE: Well, I'm not worried about the past, Martha. It's a hard time. Tonight, is going to be our night. We are going to deliver victory.

MACCALLUM: All right. So, there is something else going on tonight as well, which is the first of the big Democrat debates. And it may work to your favor that a couple of the players that often play on the team are actually going to be on the debate stage tonight.

So, we have some of their stats that we are going to put on the screen. Tim Ryan is a pretty good baseball player, he has, I guess played in eight games, and he has about 500 batting average. I'm not so good with these numbers. Eric Swalwell is not there tonight, but Beto O'Rourke is. But he doesn't seem to have as good a record. How much of an advantage is it for you, guys, that there is a big Democrat debate tonight?

SCALISE: Well, it's too bad Cedric Richmond didn't run for president on the Democrat side tonight. But, you know, they've got two stages worth of, you know, there's like 50 people running for president on their side.

The bottom line is they are moving so far left in socialism. That's not where our country is, it's a center right nation, Donald Trump has done a great job of getting the economy back on track. It's making government work for hardworking families to just gave up. He's going to have a great story to tell, let them go and fight to see who wants to be the most far left socialist tonight.

MACCALLUM: All right. So, obviously, tonight is the night other than that to, you know, put all that aside and play baseball against each other. And I know that you still are eternally grateful for people who saved your life on that baseball field that day and in the hospital. Are any of them there tonight with you?

SCALISE: Yes, in fact, a lot of them are. You know, David Bailey who was my team lead that day for Capitol Police, who risked his life at shoot -- during the shoot-out, he's here. I think Crystal Griner might be here tonight later on. Of course, she was also hit, shot by the shooter, she kept going at it, she came back to work. Both of them came back to the police force after being shot that day. What does that say about the kind of heroes they are? The sacrifices they make.

Brad Wenstrup, my colleague from Ohio who really put the tourniquet on, that saved my life so I can make it to the hospital. He is here on the field playing with me tonight. It's just, look, so many heroes, a lot of miracles that day too, as you know. I'm lucky to be alive and thank God for that.

MACCALLUM: Well, I will never forget when we did the first interview with you when you came back to work. And you know, as you say, it was so touch and go there and I'm sure it makes you more grateful for every minute of life, having been through what you've been through, and we are all grateful that you are doing so well. Good luck tonight. Good luck to both sides, and we'll be watching. Thank you, Congressman.

SCALISE: Thanks. It will be a lot of fun. I appreciate the interest, and God bless America.

MACCALLUM: You bet. Thank you, sir.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MACCALLUM: That is "The Story" on baseball and debate night. We're going to be back here tomorrow night at seven. Tucker is coming up next. Good night, everybody.

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