Sen. Graham on escalating tensions between Russia and the US

This is a rush transcript from "Fox News Sunday," April 1, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

CHRIS WALLACE, HOST: I'm Chris Wallace.

Russia tests a new generation of nuclear missiles it says can strike anywhere on earth, as the White House and Kremlin expelled dozens of each other's diplomats.


HEATHER NAUERT, SPOKESPERSON, STATE DEPARTMENT: Russia should not be acting like a victim.

WALLACE: We'll discuss the sharp escalation and tensions between the U.S. and Russia with a leading member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator Lindsey Graham.

Then, the Commerce Department announces the 2020 census will include question on citizenship, a decision that will directly affect states with large numbers of illegal immigrants. We'll talk with two top officials from California which has sued the Trump administration over the policy, Democratic Congressman Brad Sherman and Republican Shawn Nelson of the Orange County board of supervisors.

Plus, North Korea's leader takes a surprise trip to China as the world looks toward the summit between Kim Jong-un and President Trump.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And if it's no good, we are walking out. And if it's good, we will embrace it.

WALLACE: We'll ask our Sunday panel what are the chances Kim will give up his nuclear weapons?

All, right now, on "Fox News Sunday."


WALLACE: Hello again. Happy Easter and happy Passover from Fox News in Washington.

It's been a turbulent week for President Trump's foreign policy. Russia tested a powerful new missile and responded to the U.S. expelling 60 of their diplomats by kicking out 60 of ours. Kim Jong-un made a surprise trip to China while appearing to set new conditions for talks with Mr. Trump, and the president announced he wants to pull all American forces out of Syria and is freezing recovery aid for that country.

We want to discuss all this with Senator Lindsey Graham, a key member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Senator, welcome back to "Fox News Sunday" and happy Easter.


WALLACE: Well, let's start with the situation in Russia -- the launch of a powerful new missile, those mass expulsions.

Here's how Russia's ambassador to the U.S. described the situation.


ANATOLY ANTONOV, RUSSIAN AMBASSADOR TO THE U.S.: It seems the atmosphere in Washington is poison, is poisoned. It's a toxic atmosphere.


WALLACE: How serious is the split now between Moscow and Washington?

GRAHAM: I think it's pretty ironic that he used the word poison. One of the reasons we are expelling diplomats is because the Russian intelligence services most likely poisoned a British citizen and his daughter, a former Russian agent in the United Kingdom. So, this is the `80s to me all over.

I can tell you what Ronald Reagan did. Every time the Russians tried to advance their military technology, we one-up to them. Every time the Russians started running wild throughout the world, Reagan pushed back.

So, if I were Trump, I'd look at the Reagan playbook and economically isolate Russia. I would study every major recipient of Russia oil and gas and see if we could find ways to supply those countries with oil and gas somewhere -- from a source outside of Russia.

WALLACE: I want to pick up on the president's action because while the Trump administration has taken some actions, imposed some sanctions the week before last, President Trump himself has been reluctant to call out Vladimir Putin.

In fact, here's how we talked about his call to congratulate Putin after he won his reelection victory. Take a look.


TRUMP: We had a very good call and I suspect that we will probably be meeting in the not-too-distant future to discuss the arms race.


WALLACE: Senator, do we need a Trump-Putin summit meeting or do we need President Trump first to take some stronger actions against Russia?

GRAHAM: Let's go back to the Reagan playbook. He stood up in front of the Berlin wall and said: Tear this wall down, on the other side is an evil empire. He wound up meeting with Gorbachev to try to reduce the number of nuclear weapons.

I think the problem is that Russia is running wild. Whatever we're doing is not working and the president for some reason has a hard time pushing back against Putin directly. So, again, economic isolation of Russia. They're an oil and gas economy. They couldn't survive very long without customers.

So, if I were President Trump, Germany and Europe, I would -- France, I would try to cut off all of their customers and provide alternatives to their customers for oil and gas outside of Russia. That's what I do.

WALLACE: Speaking of summits, North Korea leader Kim Jong-un made a surprise visit to Beijing this week to meet with Chinese President Xi as Kim prepares for a summit meeting with President Trump next month. And according to the Chinese, Kim is now calling for phased synchronized moves to denuclearize his country.

Question, does that concern you that according to what the Chinese said after the meeting between Kim and Xi, that the North Korean leader Kim now wants concessions from both sides and longer negotiations?

GRAHAM: Yes, it could, but let me just highlight one thing. The reason that North Korea is at the table is that this maximum pressure campaign against North Korea launched by the Trump administration, where the world is beginning to follow, has paid off. They're coming to the table because it has hurt so much.

And the president has called out Kim Jong-un by name for being the tyrant he is. Now, we've got an opportunity, historic in nature, to sit down and maybe not only get him to give up his nuclear weapons but to end the Korean War, which is still going on. But, yes, I'd be very cautious about the terms and conditions of this meeting and this is why I like John Bolton as national security adviser. He's a very -- he has a very healthy skepticism, but I do hope President Trump will meet with North Korea.

WALLACE: Well, I just want to pick up on that. You say you want to be careful about the terms of the meeting, if what Kim says he has in mind is longer negotiations, concessions on both sides, it sounds kind of like the negotiations --


WALLACE: That prior presidents have had with the North Korean regime with Kim's father.

Do we still want to have the summit?

GRAHAM: We don't want to give him nine months or year to talk and build a missile at the same time. So, I had dinner with Bolton a couple of nights ago. His big fear is that they're just buying time.

They're about nine months to a year away of having a missile with a nuclear weapon on top that can hit America. He sees these negotiations as we're (ph) buying time. That's what they've done in the past.

So, I'd cut them off at the pass there. I would make sure the negotiations were very focused and get quick action.

Here's the goal in negotiations: to make sure that North Korea gives up their nuclear program. Japan and South Korea, they don't have notes, there's no reason for North Korea to have a nuclear program. They'll sell anything they'll build as to their history. And maybe get a peace treaty with North Korea, South Korea, the United States and China, but not let this drag on a very long time.

WALLACE: Meanwhile, President Trump started talking this week about pulling all of our 2,000 troops --


WALLACE: -- out of Syria who are there supporting the effort against ISIS, and we learned yesterday he has frozen $200 million in funds for recovery efforts there.

Here is the president on Syria this week.


TRUMP: We'll be coming out of Syria like very soon. Let the other people take care of it now.


WALLACE: Is President Trump making a mistake talking about getting out of Syria while ISIS is still alive, obviously diminished but still in the field, and while Iran is still pushing and some could say helping the Assad regime won the civil war?

GRAHAM: Well, Mr. President, when it comes to Russia, read the Ronald Reagan playbook. When it comes to Syria, do not read the Obama playbook.

This is the Obama playbook, one foot in, one foot out. This is a disaster in the making.

All of his military advisors have said, we need to leave troops in Syria to work with the Kurds, calm down the conflict between Turkey and the Kurdish fighters who have helped, make sure that Raqqa does not fall back into the hands of ISIL. There are over 3,000 ISIS fighters still roaming around Syria. We've got troops there to protect us and to protect the region.

If we withdrew our troops anytime soon, ISIS would come back, the war between Turkey and the Kurds would get out of hand, and you'd be giving Damascus to the Iranians without an American presence, and Russia and Iran would dominate Syria.

It'd be the single worst decision the president could make. I've seen this movie before when Obama did the same thing in Iraq and quite frankly gave Assad a pass in Syria when he had them on the ropes.

We got ISIL on the ropes. If you want to let them off the ropes, remove American soldiers.

WALLACE: You have talked -- we also want to talk about some domestic issues. You have called for a second special counsel to investigate --

GRAHAM: Right.

WALLACE: -- the FBI and the Justice Department and how they conducted both the Clinton investigation and the Trump investigation. But the inspector general, who is independent, says he is looking into that and this week, the Attorney General Jeff Sessions named John Huber, the U.S. attorney from Utah, to conduct his own investigation into those matters.

Does that move satisfy you or do you still want a second special counsel?

GRAHAM: Well, some people say it's a good start, some people say it's an insufficient process. I don't know yet. The jury is still out regarding Mr. Huber, but I do know this: if you tried this when it came to the Trump campaign, not appoint a special counsel but take some U.S. attorney outside of Washington and let them look at the Trump-Russia connection, the left would have went crazy saying this deserves a special counsel.

My belief is that there should be a special counsel. And here's the question: I want a special counsel with the same determination and resources to look at the abuses of the FISA process, was the Clinton email investigation a sham, were there conflicts of interest in the Justice Department.

I want to special counsel to be appointed with the same resources and the same determination to look at those issues as is Mueller is looking at the Trump campaign. And I don't see that yet.

WALLACE: Finally, you said we had a lot to cover. This week, the president fired the secretary of veterans affairs and he named the White House doctor, Admiral Ronny Jackson, to take that job, Jackson who famously gave President Trump a clean bill of health.

Take a look.


ADMIRAL RONNY JACKSON, WHITE HOUSE PHYSICIAN: To answer your question, he has incredibly good genes. It's just the way god made him.


WALLACE: You call this a home run for veterans and there's no question that Admiral Jackson is a brilliant -- well, he's a great combat surgeon. The question that everybody is raising is whether or not he is equipped has the experience to run an agency with 360,000 employees and an annual budget of $186 billion.

Why doesn't that concern you and how much trouble do you think Admiral Jackson is going to have being confirmed?

GRAHAM: One, I think he'll get confirmed because he's made life-and-death decisions on the battlefield. He's committed medical personnel on the battlefield. He's been in the middle of this war.

I was with him a week ago, I guess two weeks ago now, at an event in Charleston and he had no idea this was coming. I had no idea it was coming. But we started talking about the Veterans Administration, and he said to me something that was very satisfying.

Somebody needs to take that place and turn it upside down. Somebody needs to make sure that no veteran has to wait too long or drive too far to get basic health care.

I want competition for the veterans' health care. I want the V.A. to stay in existence but if a veteran waits too long or lives too far away from a facility I want the private sector to fill in that gap.

And Admiral Jackson has that same mentality and he need somebody to go into the V.A. He's willing to fight the bureaucracy and I think Admiral Jackson is a good pick because he's been on the battlefield. He knows what the fight is all about.

WALLACE: Senator Graham, thank you. Thanks for your time this holiday weekend. It was a busy set of questions and we got it all in. Always good to talk with you, sir.

GRAHAM: Thank you. Happy Easter.

WALLACE: Happy Easter to you.

Up next, the president announces he wants to pull American troops out of Syria. We'll bring in our Sunday group to discuss whether he's moving too fast.

Plus, what would you like to ask the panel about the state of U.S.-Russian relations now? Just go to Facebook or Twitter, @FoxNewsSunday, and we may use your question on the air.



ANTONOV: If anybody slap your check, your face, what will be reaction from your side? You will retaliate. It goes without saying.

NAUERT: Russia should not be acting like a victim. The only victims in the situation are the two victims in a hospital in the U.K. right now.


WALLACE: Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov and State Department Spokeswoman Heather Nauert continuing the two countries war of words this week.

And it's time now for our Sunday group. Former Republican Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Fox News analyst Marie Harf, Catherine Lucey, who covers the White House for The Associated Press, and Fox News correspondent Gillian Turner.

Well, Gillian, let me start with you. Where are we headed in relations with the Kremlin after this week and you heard from Senator Graham, what should President Trump do next?

GILLIAN TURNER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, all right, Chris, to lay it out right now, this investigation phase into the nerve agent attack is in full swing. Reporting this week is that the United States is sort of hand in glove with the Brits on this investigation every step of the way and some horrifying, horrifying developments coming out of that.

Just in the last 24 hours, the Brits confirmed that they believe President Putin at some point directly authorized this attack himself. They believe it's not a stand-alone event and it's part of a broader plan of a large-scale assassination plan for Russian defectors around the world. They've gone so far as to warn partner nations they should amp up security for Russian defectors living inside their borders.

It's a horrifying set of circumstances.

WALLACE: Why would they do that? I mean, what's to be gained -- I mean, I understand you don't like these people, but why is killing the person who is living as a private citizen in Salisbury, England, worth the blowback you get internationally?

TURNER: I think because according to the Putin and the KGB playbook, these are some of the worst people on earth, people who defected from the former Soviet Union, now from Russia are people that don't really deserve to live. They are enemies of the state in the truest form. And not to play pop psychology, but I think that's what motivates this.

WALLACE: We ask you for questions for the panel.

And on this issue of relations with Russia and the mass expulsion of diplomats, Lambert Boeman tweeted this: the only question, does this not put to bed any and all allegations of true collusion? They put him in office, to Kremlin allegedly helping Mr. Trump, to expel people?

Catherine, how do you answer Lambert and the argument that the Trump administration is taking action, the shows he's not playing ball with Putin?

CATHERINE LUCEY, ASSOCIATED PRESS: The actions this week the administration took a strong stance. These are very aggressive actions. But there is a disconnect a little bit between the administration's actions and the president's public rhetoric. We haven't heard him directly challenging Putin. So, critics are still pointing to that as a cause for concern.

But in terms of collusion specifically, that's just not going to be put to rest until this investigation concludes. We still don't know where that's going and the people are still waiting to see what Mueller finds.

WALLACE: I want to turn to a different subject, and that is Mr. Trump surprise announcement this week that he is eager to pull all use U.S. troops, about 2,000 there backing up Syrian rebels, wants to pull them out of Syria and also that he has decided to freeze $200 million in U.S. recovery aid for people in the country.

Here was Mr. Trump this week.


TRUMP: We are going to be coming out of there real soon. We're going to get back to our country where we belong, where we want to be.


WALLACE: Congressman, I want to pick up on what Senator Graham said. He said that the president is -- if he follows through on this -- is making exactly the same mistake that Barack Obama made in Iraq, which is to pull U.S. forces out before the battle is won.

Is Graham right?

JASON CHAFFETZ, R-FORMER UTAH CONGRESSMAN: Senator Graham is right. Why do you telegraph in advance what you are going to do to your enemies? And to the local people that you're working and engaging with, to signal to them that, hey, a couple weeks from now, we may not be here?

That's -- that's not a good message. I do think it's right to look at the aid portion of this and how are you going to distribute that, but I also don't think we're that close, inches away from getting rid of the caliphate and reclaiming all of the land. I just don't see that.

WALLACE: So, I mean, there didn't seem be any pressure. There was no huge call to pull U.S. troops out. How do you explain the president suddenly announcing this? He was in Ohio for an infrastructure speech, and suddenly, he says this.

CHAFFETZ: There's no way that I'm going to be able to answer that in its totality. But, look, I think his heart is in the right place. I do believe you want to get in, get your job done and get our troops home, and I think that's a good message to their military. Go in with overwhelming force, do what you need to do and come back home.

But I don't think you telegraph that in advance. And, you know, the timeline is iffy, but I think Senator Graham is right in this case.

WALLACE: I mean, it's interesting because you say don't telegraph in advance. That was one of the major points --


WALLACE: -- that President Trump made during the campaign.

CHAFFETZ: I think I said that every week, I was critical of the president -- saying, President Obama, don't do it like this.

WALLACE: Right, so is President Trump. He was saying, don't -- be unpredictable.


WALLACE: Don't tell people in advance what's going to happen.

Marie, your thought about the president's apparent eagerness to get out of Syria?

MARIE HARF, FORMER STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESPERSON: I think it would be a huge strategic mistake and not just because of the telegraphing issue, although I do agree with Congressman Chaffetz, who will fill that void if the United States is not there? Russia and Iran. And we've already seen Russia and Iran both move in increasingly into Syria. They have, you know, airbases, they have troops there, both of them do.

If the United States pulled back and leaves the reconstruction to someone else, we are handing that country over to the two countries we don't want to have more power in the Middle East. So, we are hearing from commanders on the ground, we are hearing from diplomats that President Trump needs to take a step back and stay in this for the long haul, whatever that means whether it's months or years. This would be a mistake and I think Republicans like Senator Graham will keep standing up and may be pushing the president in a different direction.

WALLACE: Now, I have to ask you, did you feel the same way about Barack Obama when he pulled our troops out of Iraq in 2012?

HARF: Well, I think it was a completely different strategic situation at the time. And there are --


HARF: The conditions on the ground quite frankly were different. And Barack Obama pulled troops out of Iraq on a timeline set by the Bush administration.

WALLACE: Well, that's not quite true.

HARF: Well, it is absolutely -- they negotiated the forces agreement under which those troops got pulled out and on that timeline.

WALLACE: You want to take this one on or shall I?

HARF: Well, wait, there's a question -- and Congressman Chaffetz brought it up. There's a tension between going to the American people rightly so and saying, our men and women are not going to fight indefinitely overseas, policing other countries' civil wars. There is tension between that and advocating American leadership. The balance is not always an easy one to find, but going to the infrastructure event in Ohio and saying, we're going to get out of Syria really soon sends a bad signal to the commanders and to our enemies.

WALLACE: I'm going to make an audible here. We could relitigate that, and the fact is that although there was a status of forces agreement, there's always the presumption that U.S. and Iraq were going to negotiate for troops to stay --

HARF: Maybe (ph).

WALLACE: -- and that President Obama didn't push very hard.

I want to move on to North Korea because there was an interesting -- Catherine, after Kim surprised us with the Chinese, the Chinese said that Kim is now saying -- we're not talking about a quick dismantlement like Libya did, like Gadhafi did to get rid of all of our nukes. We want phase, synchronized talks, concessions by both sides, longer negotiations.

What's the reaction in the White House to that?

LUCEY: You know, I think we're still waiting to hear how the president processes this. We haven't heard from him in the last day or two. But he said earlier this week that he was still looking forward to talks. I mean, he talked about -- he made references to this in Ohio this week.

So, we haven't heard an indication that he's not going to do this. And some of this I think is a part of sort of -- there's some public posturing that's going to keep going on I think up until this meeting potentially happens.

WALLACE: Does that concern you when you hear him talk? Because it sounds a bit like what the North Koreans have done in the past. Well, we'll give you this, you give us that, we will play along for a while and then we'll go back on our word.

CHAFFETZ: This is all moving in the right direction. I think this is one of the strongest points for President Trump and what he's done. He's put the pressure on both economically and militarily. It's pushing in the right direction.

You see that China is obviously going to play a key, key role in ultimately what happens there and us with the Japanese and the South Koreans have got to hold the line. And I do think it's important that the president meets with the leader of North Korea. I think that will be productive.

I don't think you should let off the gas at all. And certainly, the appointment of John Bolton is not going to send any signals that we're going to be softer.

WALLACE: Quick final thought, Gillian?

TURNER: I think the president changed tack this week. He shifted to what I would call a maximum pressure campaign against South Korea, which was really interesting, and threatening to tie a bilateral trade deal with them to the denuclearization issue. He's now saying to South Korea or demanding that they deliver some results before he even sits down at the table for this negotiation with Kim Jong-un.

And that was remarkable because I think it shows - - it shows up how little leverage we actually have against this crazy, despotic, rogue regime, North Korea. The president is sort of triangulating, as much as I hate that word, looking at the levers and saying, well, I'm not really going to get what I want from this, so I might as well push this lever and see what I can extract from South Korea.

WALLACE: And since they're meeting first, the South Koreans and North Koreans at the end of this month, he's saying, before we sign this trade deal which you guys want, let's see how much you push the North Koreans and we certainly don't want you breaking away from us.

TURNER: Yes, you said it better than I did.


WALLACE: Well -- all right. Thank you, panel. You'll get more time in the next panel for buttering me up.

We're going to take a break here. We'll see you a little later.

When we come back, the decision to include a question on citizenship in the 2020 census raises an uproar. We'll talk with two California officials about that and the escalating battle over its status as a sanctuary state. All of that, next.


WALLACE: Coming up, the Commerce Department adds a citizenship question to the 2020 census and some states are fighting back.


XAVIER BECERRA, D-CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY GENERAL: Adding a question on citizen strip threatens to derail the integrity of the entire process.


WALLACE: We'll ask two California officials what it means for their state, next.


WALLACE: A look around the world as Christians celebrate Easter.

The Trump administration announced this week the 2020 census will ask respondents whether they are U.S. citizens for the first time in 70 years, and that has started a fierce debate in California, which has voted to become a sanctuary state.

Joining me now from California, Democratic Congressman Brad Sherman and the vice chair of the Orange County Board of Supervisors, Shawn Nelson.

California's attorney general announced this week that he is suing the federal government for deciding to add that question to the census. Here was his reasoning.


BECERRA: An undercount resulting from this decision would jeopardize vital services for all Californians. It would also jeopardize our representation in government.


WALLACE: Mr. Nelson, is Congressman Becerra wrong or, in fact, would you like to see California lose some seats in Congress and some federal money that is based on the large number of people in your state illegally?

SHAWN NELSON, VICE CHAIR, ORANGE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS: Well, Attorney General Becerra, I just think is incorrect because the federal government has a right to conduct the census and there's nothing that says they can't ask any particular question. I don't want California to miss out on anything, but I think that hysteria than answering questions is somehow going to force people away from a censes, I -- I just don't buy it. The -- the government is precluded from sharing that information for 72 years after a person answers the census. And I think his time ought to be spent allaying the fears of people he things are going to be freaked out by having to answer questions.

WALLACE: Let -- let me ask you, though, about the practical effect of it, because it's kind of an open question as we looked into it. Even the Supreme Court has not definitively ruled.

Do you think that people who are in this country illegally should be counted when it's decided how you're going to apportion congressional seats and how you're going to divvy up federal money?

NELSON: Well, that's a great question. I mean if -- if, in the end, we essentially import a few million citizens of other countries to game the system to get extra congressional seats, I suppose that presents a big question for power in Washington, D.C. I mean we always just assumed the count is for the citizens of a country, but California, where I've lived my whole life, obviously has a little different issue. And that poses a big problem.

WALLACE: Congressman Sherman, let me ask you the same question. Why should California, or any state with a sizable number of illegal immigrants in its population, benefit from that to get more federal money or to get more seats in Congress?

BRAD SHERMAN, D-CALIFORNIA CONGRESSMAN: We're often shortchanged when it comes to federal money and Congress can allocate the federal money however it chooses. The enumeration for the census is the allocation of House seats and seats in the Electoral College. And the Constitution is clear, you count all persons except Indians untaxed. Those are the words of the Constitution.

Now, if people want the change the Constitution, they -- there's a process for doing that. But instead they seem to want to thwart the Constitution, to achieve their results without an amendment by deliberately undercounting all immigrants, legal and illegal. And they've got a three step program for doing that. Create massive fear, starting by calling immigrants rapists and murders, deportations. The fear in Latino and Asian communities is palpable.

Then you add this question, which the census itself, under the Trump administration says will lead to an undercount. And then you add insult to injury by saying that the reason you're doing it is to enforce the Voting Rights Act. That it's part of the Trump program for Latino empowerment. That's why they're doing it.

WALLACE: Let me -- let me --

SHERMAN: That's absolutely absurd. If you believe that, then --

WALLACE: Let me -- let me bring Mr. Nelson in, if I can, congressman, because we do have limited amount of time.

This will be the first time that this question has been asked as a general question. It's been asked, I know (ph), to a small group of people. But as a general question in the census since 1950.

What about the argument that this is an effort by the Trump administration to depress the count by frightening illegal immigrants?

NELSON: Listen, I think that any questionnaire has the potential to be avoided. The point is to reach out to communities and encourage them to participate. There's no repercussions. This information cannot be shared. And there's no reason people shouldn't participate, unless folks go out and scare them. And I would say that what's happening on this very show the Congressman Sherman might have more to do with scaring them than anything that -- that I'm seeing from -- from my end of the -- of the spectrum. I mean tell people they are protected and encourage them to participate.

My county has more poor people than most counties have people. Many of them are immigrants. We need federal money.

WALLACE: Let me -- let me -- let -- let -- I just want to ask you, Congressman Sherman, Mr. Nelson is exactly right, that the law expressly prohibits using, sharing, any information from the census with any government, with any court. So why should anybody be afraid? And perhaps aren't you, by talking as you are, aren't you creating that fear?

SHERMAN: I'm certainly trying not to create any fear. But the fact is immigrants come from countries with oppressive governments in many cases. And to convince them that a man who stands there and says these are rapists and murders and must be pushed out of our country should get information about who's in your family and what their immigration status is, and that a Congress that includes people that say they're rapists and murders isn't going to change the statute and use that as a deportation list, to convince someone who's lived through the terrible situations in Guatemala and Honduras, that they should go ahead and answer the census is going to be difficult. And to say that you're doing it to --

WALLACE: All right.

SHERMAN: Enforce the Voting Rights Act is absolutely absurd.

WALLACE: I want to switch to the other side of this because while California is suing the federal government about including this question on the census, the federal government is suing California about its decision to enact laws that in effect make it a sanctuary state. And, in fact, the Orange County supervisors voted this week to join the federal lawsuit against their own state of California.

Here was President Trump this week.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Sanctuary cities, where they protect criminals. They protect murderers. They protect people that you don't want on the streets. Other places in California said, we don't want that. First time they're speaking up.


WALLACE: Mr. Nelson, you were one of the Orange County Board of Supervisors members who voted to join a federal lawsuit against her own state. Why?

NELSON: Well, it was my idea, because we are put in an untenable position where our sheriff's deputies are precluded from talking to federal authorities if they know the authorities want to pick someone up because the person is here illegally, is charged with a crime, and our -- our people can't even talk to the federal government unless there are some exceptions that are -- that are met like they're a prior convicted felon. But we have people getting out every day that we don't want released without the federal government at least having an opportunity to put hands on and make their own decision whether these people ought to be released into the streets. We've had 244 people as of last week released that we could not stop and our people could not tell ICE officials that we believe ICE would have wanted to speak with and likely wanted to do something about.

WALLACE: Congressman Sherman, you have said that Washington is violating the Constitution by putting this citizenship question in. But isn't California violating the Constitution by interfering with the federal government, which has supremacy when it comes to matters of immigration?

SHERMAN: Chris, we need comprehensive immigration reform. Until we get it, we'll be pulling our society apart over this issue.

WALLACE: Sir, you're not answering my question. Isn't --

SHERMAN: Now, I'll get -- I'll get --


SHERMAN: California is absolutely within its rights. And California has sued the Trump administration 29 times and we haven't lost once. (INAUDIBLE) the Trump administration --

WALLACE: You're not answering my question, which is, isn't immigration --

SHERMAN: I will.

WALLACE: Well, let's get to it, sir.

SHERMAN: Absolutely.

WALLACE: We're almost done, sir.

SHERMAN: Yes. Yes. The states and the federal government share sovereignty in our federal system. That's why Obamacare couldn't force the states to expand Medicaid, even though that's the federal program that even though --

WALLACE: Now, that's the question of supremacy. And, in fact, when Arizona, went further than President Obama did, the Supreme Court said that they had overstepped their bounds. Under the supremacy clause, the federal government, what they say on immigration goes, and aren't you violating that?

SHERMAN: Federal government establishes immigration policy. But whether America -- whether California employees are going to spend California money and resources to help enforce that policy is a California decision. We will win that in court. And if the federal government can't compel states to participate in Medicaid, it can't compel states to become law enforcement authorities on immigration.

WALLACE: Of course the federal -- the Constitution didn't say anything about Medicaid, which didn't happen until the 1960s. It says something very specifically about immigration.

Mr. Nelson, I'm going to give you 30 seconds for a final thoughts.

NELSON: Right.

And, Chris, unfortunately, that's completely misleading. We don't want our people doing the federal government's job, nor do they have the time to do it. What California's law is requiring is our sheriffs not even cooperate, which is resulting in people that have committed crimes ending up on the streets of every county, but certainly Orange County. We got involved because we don't think that's right. We are tired of the state trying to use these arguments to prevent us from keeping the citizens safe.

WALLACE: All right, we're going to have to leave it there. Didn't think we were going to settle this, and we didn't.

Congressman Sherman, Mr. Nelson, thank you both.

NELSON: Thanks, Chris.

WALLACE: Thank you for joining us today to discuss the continuing debate over immigration.

Up next, we'll bring back the panel to weigh in on the census asking people if they are U.S. citizens, and President Trump's new war on Amazon. All of that coming up.



BECERRA: Every person who uses our highways or our mass transit system, counts. Everyone who relies on our government, federal, state and local, to be there when a natural disaster strike, counts.

SHAWN NELSON, VICE CHAIR., ORANGE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS: They'd like to pretend that everyone here is entitled to certain government carve outs and benefits. And, of course, non-citizens are entitled to a lot of benefits.


WALLACE: California's attorney general and Orange County Supervisor Shawn Nelson with sharply different views on whether the 2020 census should ask people if they are U.S. citizens.

And we're back now with the panel.

Well, Marie, let me start with you.

Why do you think the Trump administration has decided to ask this as a general question on the census for the first time since 1950?

MARIE HARF, FOX NEWS ANALYST: Well, it's hard to know their motivation. I know what they've said.

But for many Americans, including myself, I see this decision in the context of the divisive rhetoric about immigration, in the context of more hard line policies on deportation. And that's how, most importantly, Americans and people living in the country are seeing it.

So the point of the census is to take account of everyone in the country, not just citizens, and there are many people on both sides of the aisle who firmly believe that this question will depress turnout and that we will not get an accurate count because people are scared of what the Trump administration might do with that information.

WALLACE: Gillian, do you think that's true, that this is a conscious effort to try -- to depress voter -- response by people to the census with the expressed effort of trying to lower the amount of money that's spent on federal benefits, a apportionment of congressional seats, particularly to areas with large number of illegal immigrants, which tend to be Democratic?

GILLIAN TURNER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, that is certainly the political argument to be made about this issue. But there is, in fact, in addition to this, a much larger context at stake that gets a little bit more to the fundamentals of American democracy and how our representatives in Congress and elsewhere represent us, meaning the question -- and this is something the Supreme Court took up as recently as 2016, should congressional representative represent numbers -- equal numbers of voters in different districts, or should they represent equal number of people? In that -- the case was called -- I wrote it down so I'd remember, Evenwel versus Abbott. In that instance, they decided that folks who are not citizens have as much equity and should have as much say in these policy decisions as people who are American citizens. That was that decision.

WALLACE: Yes. Now that, apparently -- and -- and -- and I'm just learning about that this morning. Apparently that was a decision that was more to the states and local -- localities than it was to Congress.

So the question as to whether congressional seats should be apportioned according to people or citizens, I have to say, I was shocked to learn that it might be people and not citizens.

TURNER: Well, I was -- I -- the same, considering that, you know, American members of Congress are supposed to represent the American electorate, not just any -- everybody who I thought, you know, common parlance, what we're taught in school, seems that there's a fair argument to be made for they should also be representing the interests of non-citizens. That's a bigger question.


WALLACE: Let's bring it to one member of Congress that's sitting at this table.

CHAFFETZ: That's ridiculous to think that we weren't going to have people that aren't Americans, that they are going to influence the vote so that California gets more?

WALLACE: But are -- you're aware that's how it's worked up until now because there's been no citizen question?

CHAFFETZ: I'm -- I'm just -- I'm just saying, as a fundamental principle, I -- I think that's wrong.

Now, the census is going to count everybody. We're having our national debate about DACA, about immigration reform. Shouldn't we know how many people are here illegally? Of course we're going to count everybody, but we ought to know.

By the way, the biggest problem that's moving forward with the census isn't this question. And it will be on there. There's no way for the Democrats to get it off. Their way -- the biggest problem with the census is that they're going to try to do this over the Internet and through electronic machines. What -- what could possibly go wrong, Chris?

WALLACE: Catherine, what -- the debate inside the White House about this? And -- and, you know, it just seemed to come out of nowhere with Secretary of Commerce Ross announcing it this week. Had there been a lot of discussion about adding this question?

CATHERINE LUCEY, ASSOCIATED PRESS: I know that Secretary Ross pointed to concerns about, appropriately, dealing with the Voting Rights Act. So that's kind of the -- the argument that's being made from the administration as to why this is important.

But I think also we know that all these legal challenges are already happening. A number of states are going to challenge this. And it's not clear how quickly this will be resolved. I mean so some people are saying that it's possible that this question may not end up on the census if it -- if it gets tied up for so long in the courts. So we'll have to see how it plays out.

WALLACE: Meanwhile, President Trump has been on a tear this week about Amazon. And here is one of his tweets, to give you a sense of what he's been talking about.

They, Amazon, pay little or no taxes to state and local governments, use our postal system as their delivery boy, causing tremendous loss to the U.S., and are putting many thousands of retailers out of business.

Congressman Chaffetz, as the former chair of the House Oversight Committee, you've dealt with some of these issues. Is President Trump right or wrong?

CHAFFETZ: You know, I've been fond of the president and his policies, but he is fundamentally wrong on this issue. And I actually think he knows he's wrong on this issue.

The problems at the post office are rooted in the decline in first-class mail, their pension issues and how they account for -- for their medical costs. The fact that they have more customers in Amazon is a blessing and it is a good thing to the postal service.

If you look at UPS, FedEx, Amazon, they all use the postal service and you need them to actually boost up the numbers that are coming in to -- to the post office. So it is a good thing.

I know that they -- there is a personal conflict between the president and Mr. Bezos, and that's rooted in his acquisition of The Washington Post. But you need more customers at the post office, not less.

WALLACE: And what about this question of taxes? Because I know it was true in the past that a lot of the big box brick and mortar retailers were upset that sales over the Internet, they didn't collect sales tax. But, in fact, Amazon has, I think is collecting sales tax in 45 states.

CHAFFETZ: It's all rooted in, do you or do you not have physical presence in these states. But quite contrary to what the president has said, Amazon has been helping to lead the charge because it's in their best economic future to have sales tax collected in these states. The Remote Transaction Parody Act, which I helped sponsor, has broad bipartisan support in both -- both bodies, in the House and the Senate, and that says that the states would get to make this determination.

So Amazon is paying quite a bit of taxes, more than they've paid before, and they want each of the states to be able to make these types of decisions. A very conservative viewpoint.

WALLACE: Catherine, why is the president so focused on Amazon right now? And is it just tweets, or is there talk in the White House of really taking action to move against Amazon?

LUCEY: Well, the White House said this week there were no specific policies on the table at this time. So you're with the obvious caveats that the president sometimes makes policy without telling anyone. As of right now, they don't appear to be signaling anything. But he does, as the congressman said, this is something that's rooted both for him I think in sort of policy and politics, but also personal. And he does find the fact that Jeff Bezos, Amazon's founder, owns The Post deeply frustrating. Now, The Post has been very clear. Bezos is not involved in journalistic decisions. But the president does seem to lash out particularly if he's frustrated by news coverage.

WALLACE: Marie, let me ask you, because this is part of a bigger story, which is that there is a backlash against big tech. And we see it particularly with Facebook and the role that they played with the -- with the Russian ads, the -- the role that they played with Cambridge Analytica and turning over information.

What -- what are your thoughts about why the president is targeting, not tech as an industry, but targeting Amazon and Jeff Bezos, and specifically talking about Bezos using The Washington Post to lobby for his interests here in D.C.?

HARF: Well, Catherine's right, this is personal for the president. And we see him use his Twitter feed to sort of hash out personal issues that he has, whether it's with The Washington Post, and Jeff Bezos. This is sort of his inner monologue coming -- made -- being made public, right?

But I think that he hasn't -- or his administration, even more importantly, hasn't really looked at these bigger issues of tech. There actually could be some good work if they stepped back from the personal and said how -- should and how -- should we and how should we regulate Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, Google, all of these different platforms. There's a huge conversation we're having in our country about tech right now and the president's playing out some personal -- personal game on Twitter, which is frustrating to a lot of people.

WALLACE: I've got less than a minute left, Gillian.

And -- and while there is certainly some -- seems to be something between President Trump and Jeff Bezos, there is also a policy question here, which is that the success of these Internet companies does hurt the big box retailers in the street.

TURNER: Yes. That's -- yes. And that's, I think to the president, this is about the U.S. government, the postal service versus Amazon. And he's weighing in and putting his finger on the scale in favor of the postal service.

But to the tech sector and to the rest of America, this is about the future of brick-and-mortar and retail and what happens if a player like Amazon is forced to bear out some of the consequences that the president would like to see -- to see happen? You can't put the cat back in the box and you can't -- you can't move America away from the future of -- of online retail.

WALLACE: All right, we'll discuss more of this, I'm sure.

Thank you, panel. See you next Sunday.

Up next, our "Power Player of the Week." How the birth of two baby bald eagles attracted international attention for one of D.C.'s hidden gems.


WALLACE: Pope Francis celebrating Easter mass this morning at the Vatican.

It's one of Washington's hidden treasures just two miles from the U.S. Capitol Building. But as we showed you in 2016, thanks to some stars, it has captured the world's attention. Here's our "Power Player of the Week."


DR. RICHARD OLSEN, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL ARBORETUM: I think people are fascinated by this because this is -- this is real, live action nature right in front of their eyes.

WALLACE (voice over): Richard Olsen is talking about the birth of two baby bald eaglets, events that attracted 22 million hits on Eagle Cam.

Olsen is director of the National Arboretum in Washington. And he took us
to watch the nest from a distance where the eagle family was still living.

OLSEN: What you're seeing moving is actually the mom or the dad, Mr. President or First Lady.

WALLACE: The interest in the baby eaglets has brought more attention to the rest of the arboretum, a huge collection of plants, trees and shrubs in the heart of the city.

WALLACE (on camera): So is this a garden or a 400-acre laboratory?

OLSEN: It's both. It's not mutually exclusive. Science occurs here every day.

WALLACE (voice over): For example, these beautiful azaleas that used to grow only in the south, until scientists at the arboretum developed hybrids that can thrive farther north.

OLSEN: We behave as a bumblebee and move pollen from the male to the female, evaluate the seedlings to find the best one that combines the traits we're looking for.

WALLACE: There's a collection of 650,000 dried fresh plants to keep a permanent record.

OLSEN: If there's any confusion as to what scientifically a rosemary is, we can go back to the original specimens and say, this is how the plant was described.

WALLACE: And there's a museum of bonsai. Miniature trees Japan gave to this country in 1976 to mark our bicentennial, including this peace tree that's had quite a life since 1625.

OLSEN: This tree did in fact survive Hiroshima. So just a mile or more away from the epicenter. And this tree survived the blast.

WALLACE (on camera): So history, 400 years and one nuclear blast.

OLSEN: Yes, it's pretty amazing to think about.

This is my office and I obviously get to get out when I want.

WALLACE (voice over): Richard Olsen grew up loving the outdoors.

OLSEN: I was always seemed to be the kid that was out helping the parents in the tomato garden, vegetable garden. I remember planting rhubarb in Wisconsin and planting red tipped petunias in North Carolina.

WALLACE: There was a time when he considered a different line of work.

OLSEN: I thought, well, wouldn't it be fun to be an analyst in -- for the CIA. I read too many spy books and movies.

WALLACE: But by the end of college, he traded spy craft for seeds and he's never looked back.

OLSEN: Our mission at the arboretum is to enhance the American landscapes. When you walk into work and you see these trees and you think, my job is to get people to love trees as much as I love trees, that's a -- that's pretty noble.


WALLACE: And more good news at the arboretum this week. Two new bald eagle eggs were spotted in the nest.

And that's it for today. Have a Happy Easter and Passover and a great week, and we'll see you next "Fox News Sunday."


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