Sen. Lindsey Graham: I am increasingly optimistic we can have historic solutions in Syria
This is a rush transcript from "Sunday Morning Futures," October 20, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MARIA BARTIROMO, ANCHOR: Good Sunday morning, everyone. Thanks so much for joining us. I'm Maria Bartiromo.
Joining me exclusively right here on "Sunday Morning Futures" coming up, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is here on the impeachment inquiry and on what happened inside that explosive meeting between the president and Speaker Pelosi.
House Intel Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes is here on the push to shed light on the secretive impeachment process.
Plus, Lindsey Graham responds to criticism from President Trump and the chaos in Syria, why he is leading the charge in Congress to hold Turkey accountable. The senator will be here. Plus, the Senate Judiciary chairman, how is he preparing for the possible impeachment trial?
Plus, more of my exclusive interview with the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, this morning. Could pulling troops from Syria give Iran a new foothold in the Middle East?
Also with us, House Foreign Affairs Ranking Member Michael McCaul will join me exclusively.
All that and a lot more, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures" right now.
And we begin this morning with that exclusive White House meeting last week between President Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday.
The president tweeted out a photo from the Cabinet Room accusing Pelosi of having a meltdown. She also reportedly refused to read a letter Trump sent to Turkey's president demanding an end to the violence in Northern Syria.
Pelosi stormed out of the room with her colleagues, while Republicans continued their meeting with the president. Democrats say that the president was disrespectful to the speaker, while Republicans say the incident is part of a pattern with Pelosi.
Joining me right now is one of the lawmakers who was in the meeting, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Leader McCarthy, it's good to see you this morning. Thanks so much for joining us.
REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY, R-CALIF.: Thank you for having me back on, Maria.
BARTIROMO: I want to get to the impeachment inquiry.
But, first, can you tell us what went on in that meeting? You were there. What took place?
MCCARTHY: Well, I have been in many of these meetings. This is a pattern of the speaker.
When she doesn't want to come to a solution, she really is unbecoming of a speaker, throws a fit, and then leaves the room. That's not a sign of a leader. A leader stays in the room and solves the problem.
But let me explain to you exactly what happened at the very beginning. The president starts the conversation. And this is a bipartisan, bicameral meeting. And he's landing a letter out that is a letter that he sent to the president of Turkey, Erdogan, about not entering that area, about protecting the Kurds.
As each elected official gathers that letter, they start to read it. They pause. It's something they have not seen before.
The speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi turns it over and, sitting directly across from the speaker -- the president -- sets it right down on the table to make a point to him that she's not going to listen to him.
And what's really creeping into all of this is impeachment. She couldn't put that aside for one moment to talk about the security of an issue that should be one person that we're all speaking together with one voice.
But it was impeachment. And if you watched her and Senator Schumer, they said the exact same thing over and over, until they felt they were at the moment that, on their own script, they were supposed to get up and walk away.
And the dirty little secret here, Maria, is, the other Democrats stayed in the room, and we had really a productive, normal meeting. The only common denominator that disrupted this all was the speaker of the House.
BARTIROMO: So, what are you going to do, as the leader of the GOP right now in the minority, if you can't get anything done, and it's all about impeachment?
Now, you sent a letter to Nancy Pelosi asking her 10 questions. You said that she only answered two of them. Tell me what you want to know and explain the impeachment process to us.
MCCARTHY: Well, first of all, we have to think and your viewers have to understand, what does impeachment mean?
Impeachment is the most serious thing that an elected official could almost do. It is removing an individual who was duly elected. So you shouldn't take this lightly. You shouldn't bring politics into it. And you should make sure you have a fair process.
In this letter I sent to the speaker of the House, laid out 10 questions. These aren't 10 questions that I made up. This is the process used for President Nixon and President Clinton.
Do you have due process? Is the president's attorney, counsel able to be in the room, cross-examine? Are they able to bring witness forward? And are both sides able to have a subpoena process?
And you know what happened? She only answered two of them. We have never taken a vote about impeachment inquiry. And the reason why that is so important, every American lends their voice for two years to their representative.
Right now, one person is having all of the power, instead of the people across America actually have a say in this process. And now they are bringing Adam Schiff, who has lied numerous times to the American public, in charge of this process?
And they are denying members of Congress from even being in the room or hearing the transcripts and reading them of what's being said. Adam Schiff controls who can come into the room.
So members who are on the committee aren't even -- on Judiciary Committee and others aren't even allowed in the room. And members who have to vote on this come down to the committee and they can't even read the transcripts? How is this fair?
BARTIROMO: So, she came back to you and answered two questions, but she ignored the other questions? She said she's not going to bring it to the floor for a vote.
MCCARTHY: Well, she's not going to bring an impeachment inquiry, something we have always done in the past.
And remember what we're talking about. You're changing the fabric of the America. You're changing what democracy has said, only because of your own political views? That is what is wrong.
You want to trust democracy. And from a very important standpoint here, we need due process in this. A Republican speaker made sure this process happened with President Clinton. A Democrat speaker made sure this process happened with a Republican president.
So why can't she follow the same process with such a serious question that's before us? It's because she's letting politics play into it. Remember when she said we're going to move into impeachment injury? If she waited 48 hours until she read the transcripts of that phone call with President Trump and the president of Ukraine, we wouldn't even be in this mess.
MCCARTHY: We already put America through a two-year nightmare, and they're trying to do it again.
BARTIROMO: Well, the two-year nightmare about collusion and President Trump, which then we learned definitively that wasn't the case.
Let me take you back to something you just said, because you said, after that meeting at the White House, that you went on to have a productive meeting, the Republicans and the Democrats, within that meeting at the White House.
Did you make a decision in terms of bringing the vote on sanctions on Turkey, given the fact that they did go into Syria and the chaos is still worsening today?
MCCARTHY: We had discussions. And it was Democratic senators and Democrat congressional members in the key committees.
We had a discussion that the president, with the secretary of defense, the general of Joint Chiefs, and it was a very open discussion, where people had differences of opinions, but they weren't yelling, they weren't getting up and walking away.
And what we really learned in that meeting was, the president was telling us his concerns, but also that you had the vice president, Mike Pence, the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, landing in Turkey at that moment, trying to acquire a cease-fire, which they were successful at, a cease-fire that could save the Kurds' lives, give them time to actually move out, get a safe zone in there, and if we were to move on sanctions at that moment in time, without having that discussion, without having that knowledge, could have sent the wrong message and actually created a much difficult situation for us.
So it's important that we have these conversations with the Republicans, Democrats and the administration, not get up and walk away to run out to the stakes.
And if you watch them speaking at that podium, all three of them talking at the same time, it's almost as they choreographed this and it was always -- and if you listened to the final words, it was about impeachment.
And before the speaker of the House left the room, I listened to her, and she almost threatened the president. She didn't use the word impeachment, but you knew what she was talking about, when she said something to the extent, you just wait to see what we do.
MCCARTHY: I mean, that is unbecoming of a speaker.
And, more importantly, that's not a real leader. A leader can have disagreements.
BARTIROMO: Wait to see -- yes.
MCCARTHY: And I have difference of opinion, but I stay in there to try to find a solution.
BARTIROMO: Wait until you see what we will do.
All right, we want to take a break. I want to get your take on whether or not you want to see Adam Schiff step down. I know that there is a resolution which will be taken up this upcoming week.
More with Leader McCarthy when we come right back.
We're also going to talk about his meeting with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Follow me on Twitter @MariaBartiromo, @SundayFutures, and on Instagram as well.
Stay with us. A lot more with a Leader Kevin McCarthy on "Sunday Morning Futures." Back in a minute.
BARTIROMO: Welcome back.
I'm back with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Congressman, we were just talking about Turkey. Before we move on to Adam Schiff, because I want to ask you about that resolution this upcoming week, do you expect you will vote on sanctions against Turkey this upcoming week?
MCCARTHY: No, I do not believe we're going to vote on it, as I see the schedule going forward.
And what I think would be appropriate at this moment in time, to have the vice president and the secretary of state come and brief us on their meeting with President Erdogan and others and where we currently are in this situation, and what is the strategy going forward.
I think the administrative branch or the executive branch should come in and brief us, so we're all on the same page and have all the same information
BARTIROMO: All right, let me move on to Adam Schiff and, of course, your colleagues bringing this resolution to try to censure Adam Schiff.
Where are we on that? And you're expecting that vote this upcoming week?
MCCARTHY: That will come up on Monday.
And why -- why we're doing this, remember, Intel Committee is different than any other committee. They have exclusive information that other members of Congress never get about intel and others.
To be the chairman of the committee -- and remember what this individual has done, Adam Schiff. First, he lied to the American public that he had proof beyond circumstantial evidence. And we went threw a two-year nightmare.
He then went on, and he lied when he sat as chairman of the committee of what he wanted to be in that phone call, but wasn't. It was so powerful that the speaker of the House on national television, with George Stephanopoulos, said what Adam Schiff said was correct, which would put us into jeopardy.
And now we find out that he lied to the American public when it came to the whistle-blower, that his staff actually met with him. He's become a fact witness.
And the Democrats have now put him in charge? So those are three times he's lied to the American public. And especially when they give the exclusive classified information, that we need to trust those individuals who on the Intel Committee, I think it's only proper that the House itself censure this individual.
And it'll be a real question for these Democrats. Would they not stand up for the truth, knowing and seeing and listening to this man continuing to lie to the American public?
BARTIROMO: Well, I mean, can anything come of that, though? You are in the minority.
I mean, let's say all of the Republicans vote for that. What does that mean in terms of actually removing Adam Schiff?
MCCARTHY: It has nothing to do about being a Republican or a Democrat.
This has to -- this has to be to the integrity and the truth of the individual themselves. This individual is given the responsibility to be the head of the Intel community -- Committee that actually sees the classified information that members of Congress never see, and he lies to the American public about it?
But, more importantly, he lies to his own members that put us in jeopardy. The very least we can do is censure him. That's not removing him from committee, which I'd like to do and I called for back in March, when he lied the first time.
But, at the very least, this goes to the honesty, the integrity of the House of the Representatives. If they cannot stand and censure him, when they knowingly look at him lying him three separate times to the American public and to the U.S. House of Representatives, it says a lot about they are putting politics before people, and they only care about impeachment, instead of standing for the truth.
BARTIROMO: It's very tough to look at what's happening in Washington today with the vitriol.
Do you expect anything legislatively to get done before 2020?
MCCARTHY: The Democrats have done nothing in this Congress.
And, Maria, you know this more than anybody, in your business sense. Here we are that Mexico and Canada have become our number one and number two traders. We have the United States, Mexico and Canada agreement sitting before us, where Mexico has ratified it, Canada has been sitting and waiting. And now they have an election today.
And we have a president negotiating with China, our number three trader, next month. We would only be stronger had we ratified this agreement with our top two traders sitting and negotiating with our number three trader.
MCCARTHY: The only person that has the power for that to come up is the speaker of the House. And everybody knows, if she called it up, it would pass.
But she cares more about tearing this president down, instead of building this country up.
BARTIROMO: It's really a shame.
OK, real quick on Mark Zuckerberg. You met with him. There seems to be a feeling on both sides of the aisle that these companies, social media, are more powerful than they ever have been before. And you have been pushing this idea of the right to your knowledge of what they're doing with our data.
Tell me what's happening with Facebook and if you see any regulation coming in terms of big tech.
MCCARTHY: Well, Maria, I have to thank you, because you're one of the few that do call them out.
Big tech has become so powerful and so influential, that 95 percent of all searches go through Google. They have a certain amount of power. So we have called them out when they have tried to suppress conservative vote or conservative thought.
But something happened different last week. Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, went to Georgetown. And he actually stood up for free expression. And we know free expression is still the best business model in the world.
And one thing that's happened, look what China just tried to do to the NBA commissioner. Tried to get a general manager fired for standing up for free speech of those in Hong Kong.
So, at the same time I call out big tech every time I see them trying to take away conservative speech...
MCCARTHY: ... I just saw somebody stand up for free expression.
And it's -- we need to be fair.
MCCARTHY: If Mark Zuckerberg is willing to make that stand, we should stand with him.
But we need to hold these companies accountable because of the influence. I remember what they did to the Republican Party in California. If you Googled the Republican Party two weeks before the election, they said our ideology was Nazism.
BARTIROMO: Right. That's right. Yes.
MCCARTHY: That's wrong.
BARTIROMO: We are going to talk to Devin Nunes about that. He's suing Twitter right now.
Congressman, it's good to see you this morning. Thanks so much.
MCCARTHY: Thank you.
BARTIROMO: Congressman Kevin McCarthy there.
Coming up: chaos in Syria amid a shaky cease-fire deal.
My next guest vows to hold Turkey and President Trump accountable for the consequences. Senator Lindsey Graham is next right here on "Sunday Morning Futures."
Back in a minute.
BARTIROMO: Welcome back.
The fighting is continuing in Northeast Syria this morning, as we are learning that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and a congressional delegation are in Jordan this morning to discuss the crisis.
Well, here at home, the White House faces a bipartisan backlash over the decision to pull American troops from the region.
I spoke exclusively with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo this past week on "Mornings With Maria" on FOX Business just before he left for Turkey to discuss America's national security interests and the danger of ISIS returning.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: I always go back to our first principles: What's the mission? What's the objective?
When we set about this now to lay down the President's national security strategy a couple years back, our mission set was very clear, to do counterterrorism all around the world in an effective way to protect the American people.
Our efforts in Syria, our efforts in West Africa, our efforts in the Philippines, all across the world have been aimed at that singular objective. It's what we're still focused on.
And so Syria is a small part of this. It's a small part of our Middle East strategy more broadly.
You and I, I think, have spoken a number of times about the world's largest state sponsor of terror, the Islamic Republic of Iran. This -- to focus singularly on what's taking place in a part of Syria neglects the true risk to the American people and how effective this administration has been at preventing that risk from impacting security for the American people.
BARTIROMO: Yes, and I'm not disagreeing in terms of the effectiveness so far.
But is it not in the U.S.' national security interest to keep a small number of troops there to actually protect -- help the Kurds protect, for example, the oil fields?
I mean, if you've got Iran getting access to those oil fields, you and the administration have had Iran on its heels, and now, with Turkey invading, you're opening up these oil fields to the Iranians, giving them revenue to continue to support ISIS, not to mention the ISIS fighters being -- you know, being let out of these jails.
POMPEO: I've watched the world rally to push back against President Erdogan and the invasion that took place.
We should never mistake who the actor is that has caused this disruption there. It wasn't the United States. It wasn't the European countries that were there in Syria alongside of us. It was President Erdogan who is responsible for this instability.
We're now working to make sure -- and your point is well taken. There are oil fields a little bit further south that are very important, and I know the president is thinking about, with the recommendations from myself and the vice president, about how best to address that.
BARTIROMO: But isn't it also true that we had a small number -- we have a small number of troops in Syria, and for the most part we are acting as the backup to the Kurds, we're helping them with armament and weaponry, we have not lost many people in the last five years?
And, granted, any life lost is too many, but when you consider the fact that it's really the Syrian Kurds that are doing the bulk of the fighting, the Syrian Kurds that are losing men and women, not the U.S.?
POMPEO: Every American life matters an awful lot, Maria, as you just said. I know we both value that. We're...
BARTIROMO: How many people have we lost? How many people have we lost in five years?
POMPEO: Yes, it's been more than any American would wish. Right?
I mean, Maria, I understand your point. Your point is well taken. But we need to make sure that we get this right, that we get the balance right, and I'm very confident that President Trump will do that.
BARTIROMO: I guess my biggest issue here is the strength of Iran.
And I feel like the administration had the Iranians on their heels and ruining the economy through sanctions, through this pressure campaign. And now we give up and leave Syria, and in effect, wrong those people who have been supporters and have been our partners, the Kurds, and open up this area to Iran.
POMPEO: Maria, I can assure you of this. The Islamic Republic of Iran is feeling the full might, the full pressure of the United States of America.
They were feeling it yesterday. They were feeling it a week ago. They will feel it months from now.
We've laid down the strategy, the ask, what it is we're hoping the Iranian regime will do, how they'll change their behavior. We are still fully committed to that, and I am confident that ultimately we will prevail.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BARTIROMO: My next guest just spoke with President Trump last night about the objectives in Syria.
Senator Lindsey Graham joins us. He is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
And, Senator, it's always a pleasure to see you.
Your reaction to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo?
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-S.C.: Well, no, it's a blessing to have him on the team. He's sort of the anchor tenet.
General Milley is doing a great job. Ambassador Jeffrey, who has the Syrian portfolio, is the best in the business. And we have got a really good team. The vice president did a terrific job.
So let me tell you where I think we are. Withhold judgment as to what's going to happen in Syria until it's all in. I am increasingly optimistic that we can have some historic solutions in Syria that have eluded us for years, if we play our cards right.
I blame Erdogan for the invasion, not Trump. But here is what the president told me over the weekend. Here are our objectives, to make sure we have a demilitarized zone between Turkey and the Kurds. The Kurds were the allies what helped us defeat ISIS. They lost 10,000 soldiers. We have lost eight in four years. God bless the eight, but it was the Kurds who did most of the fighting.
Protect our NATO ally Turkey from elements of the Kurds that they considered to be terrorists, a demilitarized zone occupied by international forces, no Americans, but we provide airpower.
The president appreciates what the Kurds have done. He wants to make sure ISIS doesn't come back. I expect we will continue to partner with the Kurds into Eastern Syria to make sure ISIS doesn't reemerge. That is in our national security interests, and we owe it to the Kurds.
The big thing for me is the oil fields. President Trump is thinking outside the box. I was so impressed with his thinking about the oil. Not only are we going to deny the oil fields falling into Iranian hands. I believe we're on the verge of a joint venture between us and the Syrian Democratic Forces, who helped destroy ISIS and keep them destroyed, to modernize the oil fields and make sure they get the revenue, not the Iranians, not Assad.
And it can help pay for our small commitment in the future. And protecting Israel is the number one objective. And we can do all of that with a very small force.
BARTIROMO: Senator, you...
GRAHAM: I'm increasingly optimistic this could turn out very well.
BARTIROMO: It could turn out very well.
This is completely different than what you have been saying all week. You have been a staunch criticizer of the president's move to pull all the troops out of Syria.
BARTIROMO: You said, in fact, on this program just two weeks ago, if we abandon the Kurds, ISIS is going to come back and that there's an attack on our allies.
So, you have changed your mind based on what you have heard from the president last night?
I still believe that, if we abandon the Kurds, nobody helps you in the future. They have lost 10,000 fighters to destroy the caliphate. But there are 15,000 or 20,000 ISIS fighters running around in Syria and Iraq.
A small contingent of Americans providing airpower and capability will keep ISIS at bay and keep the jails locked up and the Kurds -- I mean, the ISIS fighters won't break out.
What I heard from the president was a very -- play the ball as you lie is a concept in golf. Well, after Erdogan's invasion, things have gotten scrambled in Syria.
But I see a way forward now that really, quite frankly, is historic, historic security for Turkey, historic security for the Kurds. A plan to keep ISIS down and out forever, and a chance to keep the oil fields in the hands of our allies, not our enemies, would be a hell of an outcome, and I think that's now possible.
BARTIROMO: Let me ask you, Senator.
The president says that he wants the troops home, he doesn't want wars. And the American people, much of them, agree with him.
BARTIROMO: Why are we sending troops to Saudi Arabia then?
GRAHAM: Well, because Saudi Arabia is an ally and Iran is an enemy.
And Iran is the biggest state sponsor of terrorism on the planet. They're trying to build a nuclear weapon. They are liars. They murdered their own people. They dismembered Lebanon and Yemen, and on and on and on. They have got American blood on their hand. They attacked the largest oil field in the world in Saudi Arabia.
And it's in our interests to make sure that oil field is protected and the world's economy doesn't plunge because of misadventures of Iran. That's why what President Trump is proposing in Syria, a joint venture dealing with the southern oil fields in Syria, between our allies, the Kurds and the Arabs who helped us destroy ISIS, is a historic change that could pay dividends for the region.
And, quite frankly, we could generate revenue to pay for our commitment in Syria, something we haven't been able to do.
So, the bottom line here is, you have got to play the ball where it lies. And if President Trump fulfills the objectives he laid out to me, then I think we can end Syria successfully.
And God bless all those who have fought to destroy ISIS.
Well, that's breaking news this morning, Senator, that you actually do see a way forward after you have spoken with the president on his plan to secure those oil fields.
Thank you for that.
I want to switch gears real quick, before you go, because we got news this week...
BARTIROMO: ... that the State Department concluded its investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's private e-mail usage.
They have determined nearly 40 people committed violations. Are you going to be bringing anybody down to question, testimonies to find out what went on here? People would like accountability. And it seems like we never get any with the Clinton machine.
Ditto for the I.G. report that's pending and whether or not you are going to do a deep dive into the origins of the Russia probe.
GRAHAM: Right. Well, there's two questions there, and there are two good ones.
In terms of the e-mail report, that would have to go to the Foreign Relations Committee that has jurisdiction over the State Department. I would imagine that the Chairman Risch would have a hearing about that. How did they abuse the rules?
And I promise you -- and I keep saying this -- as soon as Horowitz is done with his review of the FISA warrant application, the counterintelligence investigation of the Trump campaign, you will have -- we will have a hearing in public with Horowitz, and we will call a bunch of witnesses.
As to the corruption in the Ukraine, I want your listeners to understand that I think Ukraine was involved in the 2016 election. I think they were trying to hurt Trump. They may have been working with the Democrats.
And I want somebody to look at Ukraine involvement in our 2016 election, like Mueller looked at the Russian involvement. That has yet to be done. And it needs to be done.
BARTIROMO: You want a special counsel?
GRAHAM: I have been calling one for a year. But if Durham is doing it, I'm OK.
But I'm going to write a letter to Barr. I want him to tell me that, yes, we're looking at the allegations regarding Ukraine interference in our 2016 election. Manafort, who was the president's campaign manager for a relatively short period of time, worked in the Ukraine. And I think people were out to get him.
But the Politico article is very disturbing, where DNC members went to the Ukrainian Embassy to find dirt.
GRAHAM: So, the bottom line, I hope we look at Ukrainian corruption. And I'd like to call the prosecutor into the United States and have him testify, the one that Biden had fired.
BARTIROMO: Right. Senator...
GRAHAM: Isn't it kind of odd that the only person that Biden wanted fired was the one investigating his son?
BARTIROMO: Senator, hold on.
Senator, stay with us. Back in a minute.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BARTIROMO: And I am back with Senator Lindsey Graham.
And, Senator, moments ago, you said you want to question the former prosecutor of the Ukraine. Just to be clear, this is the prosecutor that Joe Biden got fired.
I want to know what happened. I want somebody to look at interference by Ukraine into the 2016 election, like Mueller looked at Russia. I'm hoping that's being done. If it's not being done, it should be done.
I'd like to do it outside of politics. And I find it odd that the only person that Biden wanted fired was the prosecutor. Maybe he is corrupt, but clearly he was looking at the boards that Hunter Biden was serving on.
You know, if it had been a Republican that pulled this shenanigans, it would be all over the news. So I'm not going to give up on the idea that both -- both sides need to be looked at. Trump has been looked at. Now it's the Democrats' turn.
I mean, as we peel the onion back on the origins of the Russia probe, we are learning more and more. And we will continue to focus on this.
Senator, it's good to see you this morning. Thanks so much.
GRAHAM: Thank you.
BARTIROMO: Senator Lindsey Graham.
Democrats are setting up more closed-door interviews this upcoming week, meanwhile, in their impeachment inquiry, amid growing criticism from Republicans, who argue the process is largely being done in secret.
Joining me right now, a top Republican who was inside the room for those closed-door interviews. He is House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes.
Congressman, always a pleasure to see you. Thanks very much for joining us.
REP. DEVIN NUNES, R-CALIF.: Great to be with you.
BARTIROMO: Can you give us a sense of what's going on in those rooms?
You were present for both the last two very important testimonies, Mr. Sondland and Mr. Volker.
NUNES: Yes, Maria.
And it's all being done in secret. Remember, these guys don't have any classified information. If they really want to do an impeachment, they should be having this out in the public.
And, remember, both Ambassador Volker and Ambassador Sondland, these are supposedly the guys in the middle that were doing all -- all the mischief with Rudy Giuliani.
Well, the fact is, is that they blew a hole completely through that conspiracy theory. And watching these nitwit Ivy League lawyers on the Democratic side where -- asking these questions, it's like watching the crazy train trying to get to the impeachment fantasy land.
These guys are on a fishing expedition. And you can tell. After about 20, 30 minutes, when they don't get the answers they want, they start to lead the witness to get the answers they want, so that, when they release the transcripts and do their phony report, when they try to get this vote for impeachment, they are just creating this false narrative made for television, really, and made for sound bites.
It's just all about narrative-building. And they just don't have a case. And this should be -- this is an embarrassment to the United States of America.
And, look, at the end of the day, we have real work to do here. We have a trade agreement with the United States and Canada, our two largest trading partners. That means something to real people out there in America. And these guys just won't do it because they can't get impeachment off their brain.
BARTIROMO: Congressman, let me ask you.
You have done so much work in terms of the origins of the Russia probe. Is this impeachment inquiry and Ukraine tied to the origins of the Russia probe? I understand you asked a question about that within the meeting. I know you can't say anything because its done behind closed doors.
But can you...
NUNES: Well, they leaked it. That's a good point, right? They leaked that to one of their favorite reporters.
So, that's the thing, is, when they want something out, they leak a fake narrative out. But they tell us, oh, you can't leak any of this.
And this is part of the problem of, it's really, you know, we will do whatever we want, but, at the same time, we're going to leak to our favorite reporters the things that we want to leak.
But I think the...
BARTIROMO: So, you asked Ambassador Sondland a question about the origins of the Russia probe and Ukraine's involvement?
So, this is the problem. If you really look at it, what was Rudy Giuliani doing in Ukraine? It's very clear why Rudy Giuliani was in Ukraine. His client, the president of the United States, had been dirtied up by Ukrainians, OK?
So, people forget Ukraine is all over the Steele dossier. We know that Nellie Ohr testified that she was getting information from Ukrainians. So, why on earth is there a problem for the president's lawyer to go to Ukraine to get information to figure out, where did this dirt come from? Where did it originate from?
So for the president to be upset with Ukraine, upset about the corruption, because he knows -- don't forget, the Ukrainian ambassador here in the United States in August of 2016 wrote a nasty hit piece on President Trump -- well, then candidate Trump, before the election.
NUNES: There's plenty of reasons why the president would be over in Ukraine having his lawyers in Ukraine to try to get to the bottom of the Russia probe.
And, look, these nitwits on the Democratic side -- and I call them not being -- it's not -- I'm not trying to do name-calling here, but it's like they're living in a dream world. They don't know that the dirt that they paid for -- they paid Fusion GPS to send a British spy to Ukraine to dig up this dirt.
And now, all of a sudden, they pretend like -- like that just doesn't exist?
NUNES: Sorry. We're going to hold them accountable.
And we're going to ask the questions every time about the Democrats; ties to Ukraine. And I was glad to hear Senator Graham say that, look, we need to get to the bottom of, what did the Ukrainians know?
NUNES: Who were the Democrats that were dealing with Ukrainians?
Because it appears like more and more evidence out there that there were a lot of operatives for the Democratic Party, not just Fusion GPS, that were coordinating with Ukrainians to dirty up this president. And the American people need to know that.
BARTIROMO: And one of the operatives we have talked about is Joseph Mifsud.
We have this timeline, which is the George Papadopoulos entrapment timeline, that we are going to show here. And I know that, in April of 2016, it was Joseph Mifsud who told then campaign staffer George Papadopoulos that Russia had Hillary Clinton's e-mails.
Now we understand that William Barr and John Durham have obtained BlackBerrys tied to the launch of the Russia probe. And these phones were the property of Joseph Mifsud.
What are we going to find on these phones? And why is it important that we look at Joseph Mifsud?
NUNES: Well, Joseph Mifsud should have been the guy at -- that we should have got to the bottom of.
With Mueller's $35 million probe, we should have known exactly what Joseph Mifsud was up to, because he's the one that supposedly first knew about the e-mails.
So why would you not spend the first part of your investigation to definitely get to the bottom of Joseph Mifsud? Now, what do we know about Joseph Mifsud? We know that he worked with FBI agents. We know he trained FBI agents at the Link campus in Rome.
We know that he was around many NATO members running dialogues with NATO members. So this is a guy who, if he was a Russian asset, OK, as -- so -- you have James Comey said he was a Russian asset. Mueller stopped short, just saying that he had Russian connections.
Well, somewhere in there, we got to know the truth, because either Joseph Mifsud is not a Russian asset and he was working for someone else -- we need to know who that was -- or if he was a Russian asset...
NUNES: ... my God, the State Department has been corrupted, our own FBI has been corrupted.
Joseph Mifsud was in the United States Congress in early 2017, as we were beginning our investigation.
NUNES: So, something doesn't add up. So, the fact that Durham is building evidence...
BARTIROMO: Because, once we know for sure -- once we know for sure that Mifsud working with Western intel, we know that it was all entrapment.
Stay with us, Devin Nunes. I want to ask you about your lawsuit against Twitter when we come back.
BARTIROMO: I'm back with House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes.
And, Congressman, you with suing Twitter. You got a legal victory two weeks ago by a judge. Tell us where that stands.
NUNES: Well, look, I'm very concerned because, of all of the content that's being created out there that's anti-conservative -- 90 percent roughly of the media that's out there is against conservatives and Republicans.
But what's more concerning than that is what I call the tech oligarchs. And they have these devices where, whether it's Twitter or Google or Facebook, that really controls what Americans are seeing, especially younger people.
So that's really, I think, critical for the next election, that those companies can't be biased. And what's amazing about Twitter, you know, here for six months, I have been -- we have been in court. They have had plenty of chances to come clean. Right?
NUNES: But yet they have hundreds of anonymous accounts that attack me on a daily basis, sometimes hourly basis, with defamation, slander, et cetera.
And you just have to wonder, like, what on earth are the board members and the CEO of Twitter thinking here? So now a judge has now ordered them to participate in the discovery process. We need to know the identities of the people who are committing these crimes, OK, and, in some cases, veiled death threats.
Yet Twitter and their board members are so negligent that they're not willing to give up those names, so that we can have our day in court?
NUNES: I mean, they're basically telling a Virginia judge to go pound sand, they're not going to participate.
So we're going to compel them. We're going to be back in court in a few weeks. And at some point...
NUNES: Twitter is -- is a major company, with billionaires that own it.
But they have got mom-and-pop investors. And all the stuff you talk on your business show, Maria, they have a responsibility.
NUNES: I mean, as they're -- I mean, I think they are getting close to securities fraud here by not telling the people that are the owners of the company and the American people that -- how many of these accounts that are out there are actually just bought accounts, right?
NUNES: And why are you shutting down accounts for Democrats that attack Democrats, but you let hundreds against Republicans just be out there slandering?
NUNES: What the hell is wrong with them?
BARTIROMO: Close to securities fraud.
Congressman, we want to talk more about this tomorrow morning on FOX Business. I will see you on "Mornings With Maria."
NUNES: I look forward to it.
BARTIROMO: And we will continue the discussion on Twitter.
Good to see you, sir. Thanks very much.
NUNES: Thank you.
BARTIROMO: Congressman Devin Nunes.
House Foreign Affairs Ranking Member Congressman McCaul will join me next on "Sunday Morning Futures." A lot to get into with him.
Stay with us.
BARTIROMO: Welcome back.
As Congress prepares harsh sanctions on Turkey for its attacks on the Kurds, Nancy Pelosi leads a delegation to Jordan for talks.
Joining me right now for exclusive reaction is Congressman Michael McCaul. He is the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
Congressman, it's a pleasure to have you. Thanks so much for joining me today.
REP. MICHAEL MCCAUL, R-TX: Good morning, Maria.
BARTIROMO: First, your reaction to what has taken place in Syria, and are you expecting to bring those sanctions on Turkey?
MCCAUL: Well, we're very concerned about Turkey's aggressive behavior, invading Syria.
I did have a meeting in the White House, the one that became very publicized, where the speaker walked out of that meeting. After she left, we had a very, I thought, civilized conversation, with Democrats as well, about moving forward.
I got assurances from the chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the president, and the secretary of defense on residual force.
My biggest concern, Maria, is, when Obama pulled out 10,000 troops out of Iraq, he created the space for ISIS, and then the formation of the so- called caliphate.
We do not want to see that same phenomenon happen in Syria. So we pressed very hard on the fact that we need a residual force in Syria to, first and foremost, protect the homeland.
So, right now, we're in a five-day cease-fire, after which it will become permanent. I talked to the vice president about this cease-fire. We want to give this a chance to work. And I'm hopeful that it will.
But, if it doesn't, we are prepared as early as next week to move forward at the committee level on very tough sanctions against Syria, if they continue to misbehave in the region.
BARTIROMO: Is it true, Congressman, that some of the ISIS fighters have been able to get released, they are out of jail, because the Turks ran over basically the Kurds who were protecting those jails?
MCCAUL: It's another high priority of the administration, is to protect those prisons that hold, Maria, 10,000 of the worst of the worst jihadists left in that region.
My briefings, I think about 100 of them have escaped from these prisons. So we want to make sure, at all costs, that these prisons are protected.
I have been given the assurance they are right now. But it's a very fluid situation there.
BARTIROMO: Congressman, before you go, I want to ask you about the State Department conclusion that the investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's private e-mail usage determined nearly 40 people committed violations.
The e-mail investigation found hundreds of violations, dozens of individuals at fault. Your committee has jurisdiction over the State Department.
And I -- we got a copy of this report late Friday night. We're looking through it. We will be asking a lot of questions. I will request a hearing on this.
And I think, above all, Maria, what I have the most concern about, even back in 2016, when this got exposed, were these highly secretive special access programs. These are the covert programs or the most really highly classified programs in the United States government.
The fact that she took those programs overseas on electronic devices and potentially compromised that, that will be the biggest focus I have on this issue.
BARTIROMO: It just feels like there's never any accountability.
I mean, look at that meeting that you had in the White House last week where Nancy Pelosi stormed out. There's no focus whatsoever by your colleagues on the left of the true wrongdoing. When you look at the Russia investigation, same thing.
MCCAUL: Well, I agree.
And then going back to the impeachment hearings, I call it a Star Chamber. If you look at the definition of what was a Star Chamber back in the day, it's a very powerful exclusive body that meets in secret without any openness to the public, no transparency.
This is what -- I talked to Ken Starr last night about this process, that we need to follow the historic precedent of both the Nixon and Clinton proceedings here.
MCCAUL: This is not the right way to do it.
If you are going to do this, for God's sakes, do it the right way.
BARTIROMO: Congressman, it's good to see you this morning.
Congressman Michael McCaul, thank you so much, sir.
MCCAUL: Thank you. Thanks, Maria.
BARTIROMO: That will do it for "Sunday Morning Futures."
I will see you tomorrow morning at 6:00 to 9:00 a.m. Eastern on the FOX Business Network.
Have a great Sunday, everybody.
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