Sen. Lindsey Graham: ICE raids are focused on those who already had their day in court

This is a rush transcript from "Sunday Morning Futures," July 14, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARIA BARTIROMO, HOST: Good Sunday morning, everyone. Thanks so much for joining us. I'm Maria Bartiromo.

Joining me straight ahead right here on "Sunday Morning Futures," the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Lindsey Graham, here in an interview with new reaction to the escalating border crisis after his recent visit to a border facility with Vice President Mike Pence.

And as millions in Hong Kong continue to protest a controversial extradition bill backed by China, I will speak to one of the men leading the charge to preserve the freedom of Hong Kong. Hong Kong entrepreneur Jimmy Lai is here. Founder of Next Digital will join me exclusive.

Then, Texas Congressman Michael McCaul on why the U.S. is green-lighting $2 billion in arm sales to Taiwan and his concerns about a key NATO ally buying weapons from Russia.

All that and a lot more right here, right now on "Sunday Morning Futures."

And tensions are boiling over this morning on Capitol Hill, as the crisis on the southern border nears a breaking point. The Trump administration says that Mexico's actions have helped cut illegal immigration, but border facilities are still overcrowded.

They are busting, as Vice President Mike Pence saw when he joined a group of Republican lawmakers to visit a temporary detention center in Texas on Friday. That same day, a fiery House hearing where current and former officials told Congress it must take action to solve the problem.

My first guest this morning was with the vice president on Friday. He joins me now exclusive. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham is here. He is chairman of the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee.

And, sir, it is always a pleasure to have you on the program.


BARTIROMO: Mr. Chairman, let me kick it off with these ICE raids that have begun today. We have got some pushback from some Democrats and liberal mayors trying to stop the ICE officials and Border Patrol officials from carrying out their directive.

GRAHAM: Well, not only are they trying to stop people from being deported who have had their day in court and lost -- and, by the way, Obama deported three million people -- but the ICE raids today are focused on criminals who have gone to court and lost their case.

Democrats are also advocating decriminalizing entry into the United States and providing free health care to illegal immigrants once they get here. They're becoming the party of open borders and free health care, and you can't deport somebody who lost their court case.

This is insane. It's going to blow up in their face, and it is really doing damage to our country.

BARTIROMO: Yes, I want to talk a bit about what's going on at these detention centers. You were with the vice president on Friday.


BARTIROMO: You have been really studying this and leading this effort to change these loopholes in a big way.

I want to get your take about what really you saw there, and then we're going to show some pictures of some of the men behind bars. But, first, give us your reaction to your time on Friday.

GRAHAM: I saw a system completely overwhelmed for no good reason.

Our laws are set up such that if you can bring a small child to America coming from Central America, we can only hold a child for 20 days. Then we let the entire family go because we don't want to separate families. We can't process a case in 20 days.

What did I see? Fifty-two thousand people have been released into the interior of the United States from this one Border Patrol area alone. What did I see? A system about to break. I saw brave men and women who are doing an incredible job under difficult circumstances.

And I'm going to introduce a resolution next week praising them, the men and women of the Border Patrol and their allies. I saw 900 illegal immigrants that were captured for coming into our country illegally housed in detention facilities that was meant for 385. So they had to put a tent in the back.

What I saw is a bunch of people who have been here before, broke the law before, and we're not going to let them go. I don't care if they have to stay in these facilities for 400 days. We're not going to let those men go that I saw. It would be dangerous.

And also I saw that 60 different nations are sending people here illegal. We caught people from Iran, Syria, every place in the world. They're coming through our border.

BARTIROMO: Yes, they are coming from Bangladesh as well, right?


GRAHAM: Bangladesh, yes.

BARTIROMO: Yes, Bangladesh. You have got the Middle East.

So, let's take a look at what you just said. You said that the detention centers were meant to hold under 400 people.

GRAHAM: Right.

BARTIROMO: And there's actually 900 people in there.

These pictures are some of the pictures that have unnerved people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the Democrats, who say, look, we have these people behind bars.

You say what to those people who are looking at these adult men who are behind bars because they broke the law, they came into this country illegally?

GRAHAM: All of them broke our law.

Many of them -- many of them have done it before, and we're not going to let them go. This is not a concentration camp that I saw. It is a facility overwhelmed.

I'm willing to buy beds for these people, so they will have a better place to get a night's sleep, but I'm not going to let them go. And AOC and Democrats are trying to break the system, so that we let these people go.

They came here illegally, 700-and-something adult males, with criminal backgrounds by many of them, repeat offenders who've been caught before. We're not going to let them go. And I don't care if we have to build tents from Texas to Oklahoma. We're not going to let these people go. They're going to have their day in court. We're going to send them back.

BARTIROMO: Now, Senator, a couple of months ago, you came on this program, you said, look, when I come back from recess, I'm going to make sure to attack this issue. I'm going to look at the loopholes. I'm going to change the loopholes.


BARTIROMO: You have been working on a bill. When are you going to bring it to the floor? What can you tell us in terms of that bill?

GRAHAM: Well, I can tell you that, after this visit, this bill is more necessary than ever.

So what does the bill do? It says you can't apply for asylum in the United States if you're from Central America. So we're being overwhelmed. We have had 280,000 people captured at this area of the border this year. Last year, it was 120,000. We have released 52,000 because we can't hold them.

By next year, there will be a half-a-million. If you can set one foot on American soul and claim asylum, you're entitled to a hearing. The hearing is years away. You never show up. So you get here home-free.

I'm saying you can't apply for asylum in America anymore. You got to do it in your home country or Mexico. I'm also saying we can't process a minor claim in 20 days. Give us more time the process minor claims, so families -- 30 percent of the people with small children are fake families.

The word is out in Central America, you bring a small child to the United States, you're home-free. I want to change that narrative. My bill will stop 90 percent of this. We're going to vote before the August recess.

I'm willing to spend money to help Central America. Democrats have mentioned that. I will do that. But we have got to change our laws, or this never stops.

BARTIROMO: So, you're willing to put -- match that bill with also aid to Central America...


BARTIROMO: ... as a way to placate the skeptics or the pushback on the left?

GRAHAM: What I'm not going to do is keep the system intact, because it's broken.

This will never stop until we change our laws. Once they hear that you can no longer get released in America by bringing a small child, they will stop coming.

Once they hear you can't apply for asylum in America, you have to do it in your own country, they stop paying the smugglers. My bill puts the smugglers out of business. This journey that these people are taking are dangerous. The smugglers and the coyotes are making billions of dollars transporting these people.

And I got to change the narrative. America needs to change the narrative.

To my Democratic friends, we are going to vote on my bill. I will meet you halfway. We will do things for Central America, but we're not going to turn our back on this problem any longer.

BARTIROMO: Well, one of the issues is that they are renting their children in places like Guatemala and El Salvador...


BARTIROMO: ... so that people -- smugglers can come over the border with a child, so, just as you said, that you can be treated differently.

You say 30 percent of those "families" -- quote, unquote -- are really not families?

GRAHAM: Yes, they are doing a pilot program and doing DNA testing and checking and seeing, are these real families?

They told us about 60 children that were recycled. They picked the child up in Central America. They bring them to the United States. Everybody's released, and the child goes back to Central America to do it again. It's $8,000 for adults, $4,000 for families.

And here's our law. If you bring a small child to America with you, we can only hold that child for 20 days. Since we don't want to separate families, we release them all.

We released 52,000 people into the interior of the United States at that station this year alone because we don't have places to hold them and we can't keep the family together.


When I was at the border -- you went to McAllen. I went to El Paso a couple of months ago.

GRAHAM: Right.

BARTIROMO: And it was incredible, unaccompanied minors, children , two sisters I saw, one 8, one 10, holding each other's hands.

GRAHAM: Right.

BARTIROMO: Such dangerous positions that these kids are being put in. And before they actually get to the border, they have got to deal with those drug lords, who are basically saying, yes, you want to take one more step forward, give us money.

GRAHAM: This is a sick system. It is rotten to its core.

These children are being exploited. We have picked up 100,000 unaccompanied minors this year alone. They are taking this journey. God knows what happens to them on the way. And when they get here, 98 percent of them stay.

And the parents who send them know that, if you want your child to come to America, hire a coyote.

What I want is these children to be sent back to their country. I'm willing to help their country do better, but we have got to shut off the flow and turn on the aid.

If we don't change our laws, this thing is going to completely blow up in our face. And the Democratic Party should do as much as Mexico is doing to help the president. Mexico has upped its game, 28 percent reduction in crossing, because Mexico's gotten serious about it.

Our Democratic colleagues are perpetuating a system that's dangerous to children. And it's going to result in a national security nightmare for America, because the terrorists could easily get in this group.


GRAHAM: It would be so easy for a terrorist from Syria or Iran or someplace else to go to Central America, get in the middle of the group and come to the United States. It would be so easy to do.

BARTIROMO: And we're already seeing it, some people coming from Syria.

All right, we want to take a short break, because I have to ask you about Iran and the seriousness of that threat.

Senator Graham on rising tensions with Iran next, why Tehran is trying to isolate Europe from the United States.

Follow me on Twitter @MariaBartiromo, at Instagram @MariaBartiromo and @SundayFutures.

Stay with us. We're looking ahead this morning on "Sunday Morning Futures." And we will be right back.

Stay with us.



DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT: Iran better be careful. They are treading on very dangerous territory.

Iran, if you are listening, you better be careful.


BARTIROMO: That was President Trump on Friday threatening new sanctions on Iran, possibly, as the country ramps up its nuclear program.

Tehran announced last week that it is enriching uranium beyond the level set by the Obama era nuclear agreement. President Trump has said he is open to making a new deal with Tehran, but he is warning he will not tolerate any further aggression.

I'm back with Senator Lindsey Graham this morning, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman, and it -- who sits on the...

GRAHAM: Judiciary.

BARTIROMO: I'm sorry. Sits on the Foreign Relations Committee, chairman of Judiciary.

And, Senator, what about this threat from Iran? How serious is it? And are sanctions possible or potentially as a response from the U.S.?

GRAHAM: Yes, I think we need more sanctions.

The president has been measured. I appreciate that. The president got out of a bad deal. Why was it a bad deal, Maria? Because, under the deal they cut with the ayatollah, he could keep his enrichment program. There was no real inspections. And 10 years down the road, there was no limit on the enrichment program itself.

So, the difference between making fuel rods for a commercial reactor, which you enrich it at 4 or 5 percent -- 3 or 4 percent, and a bomb is 90 percent enrichment.

Here's the good deal. The Iranians shouldn't be allowed to enrich uranium at all. They shouldn't be allowed to reprocess nuclear material at all, because that's how you make a bomb. They can have a nuclear reactor, but make sure they buy the fuel from the Russians or the Chinese, if they don't want to buy it from us.

Fifteen countries have nuclear power programs, but they don't make their own fuel. The Iranians are enriching uranium, not to make fuel, but to make a bomb.


You know, the president had given waivers in terms of operating with Iran.


BARTIROMO: And Europe seems to be enjoying their relationship with Iran, even as this is taking place. What's the story with Europe?

GRAHAM: Right.

Well, they are just weak. They don't care if the ayatollah enriches, as long as they can do business. Every Arab in the Mideast thought this was a bad deal for the Arabs. Israel thought it was a terrible deal. If I were President Trump, I would actually ask the people in the region, are you OK with my new deal?

And what would a new deal look like?

Mr. President, the only good deal available to you and the world is to make sure the ayatollah has no centrifuges, he can't reprocess and he can't enrich uranium, because if you give him those tools, one day, we will have a bomb.

The best deal is to have a nuclear power program where they can't make their own fuel, like 15 other nations.

BARTIROMO: But it just feels like, every month or every 60 days or so, you hear more threats from Iran.


BARTIROMO: And they seem to be trying to separate the Europeans and the U.S...

GRAHAM: Right.

BARTIROMO: ... so that they can keep Europe on their side.

GRAHAM: Absolutely.

They are trying to break -- break the alliance apart. Trump got out of the deal because he had to. It was a lousy deal. We gave the ayatollah $150 billion. And he took it to build...


GRAHAM: Yes, in cash. And he took it to rebuild his military, to wreak havoc on the region.

There was nothing in the deal that focused on his malign behavior. It was all about a nuclear program. And all it did is slow down his march to a bomb. So a new deal would say sanctions don't come off unless you stop dismembering the Mideast, and you can never enrich or reprocess uranium, because that's how you make a bomb. You can't have a nuclear power program.

I would tell the Europeans, if you want to side with the Iranians, be my guest, but you are not going to use an American bank, you're not going to do business with the American economy. You need to pick the ayatollah or the United States. Those are your choices.

BARTIROMO: And are you prepared to sanction whatever company or country within Europe actually...

GRAHAM: To the ground.

BARTIROMO: ... does do a deal with...

GRAHAM: To the ground.


GRAHAM: So, this is the biggest decision Trump will make in his presidency, because the ayatollah's a religious Nazi. When he says he wants to destroy Israel, he's not joking.

When they write on the side of the missile "Death to Israel," they mean it. He's been trying to make a nuclear weapon, not a peaceful nuclear power program. You don't build a nuclear reactor under a mountain if you're trying to build a nuclear power program for peaceful purposes.

So the guy is a absolute radical religious Nazi, and the world is sitting on the sidelines. And the only thing between a bomb and Iran is Donald Trump and the state of Israel. The Europeans can't be counted on.

So, I'm willing to grind any country or company into the ground if they try to empower the ayatollah to have the ability to make a bomb.

BARTIROMO: So, is there anything that the president can do, the U.S. can do to get Europe to better align with the United States?

GRAHAM: Just tell them to pick. Pick and choose.

If you want -- 15 nations have nuclear power programs, but they don't make their own fuel. Why don't we add all the Arabs and the Iranians to that list? You can have nuclear power, but we will provide the fuel. If you make the fuel, you can run a nuclear power program, but if you make the fuel, it's just a small step to making a bomb.

So if the Europeans are going to argue that the ayatollah should enrich uranium, then we should consider that provocative toward us and grind them into the ground.

BARTIROMO: So, is there any reason to expect a new deal with Iran any time soon?

GRAHAM: I don't think -- I think they are going to wait Trump out. I think they are going to wait President Trump out.

What does a new deal look like? A new deal would say, you can't dismember the Mideast and have sanctions relieved. They have destroyed Yemen, Syria. They're all over Lebanon. They're the world's largest state sponsor of terrorism. They have got ballistic missiles, in violation of the U.N. agreements and resolutions.

You got to stop that, and you can't enrich or reprocess uranium or plutonium, because that's how you make a bomb. That would be a good deal.

BARTIROMO: Are you recommending any military confrontation as a result of any of this?

GRAHAM: If they go to enrichment to the levels they are talking about, if they try to restart the heavy water reactor in Iraq, I would consider that a red line I wouldn't let them cost -- cross.

Why do you need a heavy water reactor? They are trying to make a bomb. They are liars. They are not trying to produce nuclear power for peaceful purposes. They are trying to make a bomb. We have caught them like 10 times.

So, my red lines would be more enrichment and turning on the heavy water reactor. If we don't do it, Israel will.


GRAHAM: And the only thing between the ayatollah and a nuclear bomb over time is President Trump and the Israelis.

BARTIROMO: Just extraordinary.

All right, we want to take a short break. Then I want to bring you back to domestic issues, Senator.

Democrats have delayed the testimony from Robert Mueller to allow more time for questions. You have got your own deep dive on the origins of the Russia investigation. We will get into it next.


BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

House Democrats have reached a deal with former special counsel Robert Mueller to delay his testimony by a week, from this upcoming Wednesday to next Wednesday, July 24, in exchange for more time for questioning.

Republicans and President Trump are accusing the Democrats of staging a political circus.

And I'm back with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham.

And, Senator, you have been working on your own deep dive into the origins of this Russia investigation and that collusion nonsense.

GRAHAM: Right. Right.

BARTIROMO: Tell me your reaction to Mueller now going a week later.

GRAHAM: Well, they are trying to do is set up a case for impeachment against President Trump.

If they bring impeachment charges based on the Mueller report, it would be unfair. It would blow up in their face politically. President Trump would get reelected. We would take back the House and the Senate, because Mueller said there was no collusion. The facts and the law didn't justify bringing an obstruction case.

There was no underlying crime. This is all politically motivated. Does anybody really think Jerry Nadler's trying to get to the truth or that he will do a better job than Mueller?

This is people who don't believe Trump is legitimately president. They never accepted the 2016 outcome, and they're trying to destroy his presidency. This is just another effort to destroy Donald Trump. It will blow up in their face.

And I promise your listeners, after Horowitz issues his report about the flawed FISA warrant, I'm going to deep-dive into how all this stuff started. How could it go so far if there was no collusion?


Well, look, I -- what I want to know -- and I wonder if some of the Republicans on the panel are going to ask him this -- when did you know there was no collusion?

Because he took over this job, remember, in early '17. That's a year-and- a-half -- a full year, almost a year-and-a-half, before the midterm elections.

So, when in that time did he find out that there was no collusion? And if he knew way before the midterms, why sit on it until after the midterm elections?

GRAHAM: Well, that's a great question.

And I want to explain to the public how the system worked. When Hillary Clinton was investigated, she -- people for her literally took material and beat it up with a hammer. They destroyed evidence, and no one was prosecuted. No one was flipped. Nobody was prosecuted for minor offenses to get them to talk against Clinton.

Everything they did to break the Trump world, they treated Clinton with kid gloves. They hated Trump. They wanted Clinton to win. This was a politicized investigation. It should scare every American. They got a warrant against Carter Page based on a dossier prepared by a foreign agent that's a bunch of garbage.

I'm going to get to the bottom of it and explain how one campaign was treated differently than the other to make sure it never happens again.

BARTIROMO: Yes. You know, we have covered it right on and reported the truth as it all was going down in the last two years.


BARTIROMO: I'm proud that we were able to do that, and our viewers were smarter as a result.

Let me ask you the bottom line here. Will we see criminal charges on any of these people who actually put their finger on the scale in their powerful positions and tried to stop Donald Trump?

I'm talking about people like Andrew McCabe and Peter Strzok and John Brennan, who was running the CIA? Are we going to see criminal charges on any of this?

GRAHAM: Well, I trust that Mr. Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, will look at it closely. I trust that Mr. Horowitz will give us an in- depth dive about the FISA warrant process.

I'm not a prosecutor. My job is to provide oversight to make sure we fix the system, that no other president has to go through what Donald Trump went through. But, yes, I think there are plenty of people involved in the 2016 election, the way they investigated the Trump campaign, the FISA warrant application, where they have criminal liability.

But we will leave that up to Mr. Durham. But I promise you, we're going to look at the other side. Mueller was the final word for me on all things Trump and Russia. The other side, now it's their turn to be looked at.


Real quick, Senator, before you go, there's a story this morning. Huawei is planning extensive layoffs in the United States in the wake of the blacklisting.

Your reaction to that or how we're dealing with China? Do you think we will see a deal between the Chinese and the U.S.? Or they reneged on the big-ticket items, and we're not going to do a deal unless they stop stealing?

GRAHAM: Well, I don't think the president trusts -- trusts China to keep their word.

He's been the toughest person on China in my lifetime. He's destroyed ISIS. He's got out of the Iran deal. He's built up the military. I really like President Trump's foreign policy.

But dealing with China is a national security issue, just not an economic issue. If we get a deal, it will be a good deal under Donald Trump. There will be no fake, phony deals.

BARTIROMO: All right, we will leave it there.

Senator, it's always a pleasure to see you. Thanks so much.

GRAHAM: Thank you.

BARTIROMO: A lot to talk about with Senator Lindsey Graham this morning.

And we are going to continue the conversation on China.

I will speak with one of the men leading the freedom fighters in Hong Kong, exclusive, rare interview. Next Digital founder Jimmy Lai is here, explaining why U.S. support is crucial to this movement and how President Trump is the only one who can stand up to the communists in China.

We're looking ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures." That's next.


BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

Weeks of protests in Hong Kong against a bill allowing extradition to China are evolving into a massive pro-democracy resistance against Beijing.

Organizers say that millions of protesters are hitting the streets, despite Hong Kong's government declaring the proposed extradition bill dead. Many activists fear that communist China is slowly trying to strip away Hong Kong's autonomy under the 1997 handover from British to Chinese control.

My next guest was recently on the front lines leading masses of Hong Kong residents in protest.

Joining me right now in this exclusive, rare interview is Jimmy Lai. He is the founder and majority shareholder of Next Digital. He is a self-made entrepreneur.

Good to have you on the program, Jimmy.

JIMMY LAI, FOUNDER, NEXT DIGITAL: Thank you so much for having me.

BARTIROMO: Thank you so much for joining us.

And your personal story is so extraordinary. You fled China when you were just a young boy, went to Hong Kong.

LAI: Right. Yes.

BARTIROMO: Tell me a little bit about your story, why you left China.

LAI: Well, when I -- I was born in a very rich family.

That trait is classified as an enemy of the people. So, as a marginalized person, I had to work when I was very young carrying packages for passengers from Hong Kong or Macau in railway station.

And that happened to be very lucky, you know, thing to happen in my life, because I knew what the outside world is, people. I carried packages and told me that, why don't you go to Hong Kong? And went, made it to the Hong Kong under the bottom of the fishing boat.

BARTIROMO: You are very concerned about this extradition bill.

LAI: Yes.

BARTIROMO: Tell me about that.

You started your own business. You were able to flourish, despite Chinese leadership saying, we're going to shut you down.

LAI: Right. Right. Right.

BARTIROMO: You started a retail fashion business.

LAI: Right.

BARTIROMO: And they closed down the stores in Beijing, right?

LAI: No, they haven't. They have threatened to close it.

So I had to sell the company, because, like, I can't use my -- just because my political stand, I jeopardized the...


BARTIROMO: So, with that money, you started a media company.

LAI: Yes. Yes.

You know, I actually start the media company already. I start the magazines, the Next magazines, right after the massacre, the Tiananmen massacre, yes.

BARTIROMO: Right after the Tiananmen Square?

LAI: Yes. Square, yes.

BARTIROMO: OK. That's when you started the media company.

LAI: Yes. I started...

BARTIROMO: It's extraordinary to me that you were allowed to start a media company after Tiananmen Square. How did you do that with the Chinese...

LAI: Because that's still under the British colonial rule at that time.


When you look at these pictures of two million people in the streets in Hong Kong, that's equivalent to what in the United States?

LAI: Yes, 85 million people walk out? It's like -- it's phenomenal. It's phenomenal.

BARTIROMO: And you have got the Chinese leadership on your back still trying to threaten you and try to shut you down. Tell me why this is so important to you.

LAI: Well, they haven't threatened to shut me down.

We have been under advertising embargo for the last 15 years. Just the recent years, since Xi Jinping's ascendance, we have most -- we're -- advertising embargo. And that's -- you know, and they haven't done anything to us, except to marginalize us.

BARTIROMO: But you have said, if this bill goes through, it is the end of Hong Kong. Explain.

LAI: Well, if this bill goes through, they can nab anybody to the jail in China.

And also the autonomy and rule of law of Hong Kong. Without the rule of law, our financial center status will be undermined also, because without the rule of law, there's no mutual trust in the financial markets.

BARTIROMO: So the whole value system is undermined, whereas Hong Kong grew up with Western values.

LAI: Yes, exactly. Exactly.

That's why the Hong Kong people react so violently at this time or strongly at this time to this threat of their freedom, because they grew up in the Western value, like you guys are.

BARTIROMO: Tell me what the importance of you meeting with people like Secretary Pompeo, John Bolton, Vice President Pence. You met with them. Do you feel that you have support from the United States?

LAI: Yes, that's what I felt.

And I was talking to them that, as the leader of the free world, America has a very powerful weapon, which is its moral authority. You know, you have to use this to show your moral authority by supporting us, even moderately. This is very important.

We Hong Kong people is fighting the same war as you are fighting with China in your cold war, which is just starting, and, you know, just it's almost like that we are fighting your war in your enemy camp.

You have obligation and the interest to support us, because we -- seven million people in China is a very, very tiny half-percent, you know, zero, half-percent of the population.

But we are so different, because we share the same values as you that, every time we fight, and they crack us down, we are reminding the world that China is not to be trusted.

BARTIROMO: So, do you think the U.S. should be trusting China that they will follow through, keep their promises in a trade deal that the president is right now talking to Xi Jinping about?

LAI: I don't think you can trust them without verification.

I mean, like Reagan said, you trust and verify. And this is very important.

BARTIROMO: You say, look, this is a war of values.

LAI: Yes. Yes.

BARTIROMO: Tell me about that.

LAI: Well, you know, I think it is a cold war. It's a war of opposing values.

Looking -- let's look at the world 20 years from now. Do we want our children to live in the dominance of the Chinese dictatorial values, or we want to continue the values we have enjoyed?

Because, definitely, in 20 years, China is going to be biggest economy in the world. If we don't stop them, and try to let them to learn that -- the authority to earn from moral force is a much greater force than you earn from using the barrel of gun.


LAI: So, it is now for us to really -- to use moral authority, moral force to deal with China.

Even in your trade deal with China, a lot of people said that, look, we don't want to rattle China while we're negotiating, with China on the trade deal.

No, you are so wrong, because the moral authority America has is a great force, a great leverage against China in this -- in this negotiation...


LAI: ... because that's one thing that China doesn't have. It is the one thing that they are most vulnerable to. And why can't you use it?

If China sit down to negotiate, that means they need the deal. If they don't sit down to negotiate, nothing matters.

BARTIROMO: It's like -- so, you say, look, don't do a deal because you want economic prosperity with China, and you just throw away their human rights abuses and don't look at it.

I spoke with Secretary Pompeo recently.

LAI: Yes.

BARTIROMO: And the secretary of state told me what they are doing in terms of rounding up certain groups and putting them in jail, basically. Listen to this.

LAI: Right.


MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: There's also enormous -- it's not economic, in a pure sense, but humanitarian concerns as well we have seen, as they continue to collect information and use it in ways that are antithetical to what you and I understand about how human beings ought to be treated.

We have focused on these million Uyghurs that are in these terrible situations in these camps in one of the provinces. But it's broader and bigger than that. The complete absence of political freedom inside of this country is something that the American people need to continue to watch and see, because it has an impact on our economic relationship with them with as well -- our economic relationship with them with as well.

BARTIROMO: To explain Uyghurs, basically, the Chinese have rounded up Muslims, Tibetans, put them in these re-education camps, and they are being guarded by machine guns.

POMPEO: That's right.

They are not allowing these people to move freely. They are indoctrinating them with Chinese thought, Chinese thinking, in ways that the West just wouldn't do. It's different. It's historic. And it is important.


BARTIROMO: And Jimmy Lai, you have lived this.

You say, look, it is the duty of America to stop China, because you don't want China running the world with their communist values.

LAI: Right. Right. That's true.

And I hear for the Americans, please write your senators, your congressmen to say something to us. You know, like Kennedy went to Berlin in 1963, said, I am a Berliner, that gave a lot of support and hope for the Berliners to face up to the Soviet threat.


LAI: Now we're in the same position. Please have your leaders say something encouraging, say something -- it's like some...


BARTIROMO: To support Hong Kong.

LAI: To support Hong Kong.


LAI: Some empathy or sympathy words to support Hong Kong, so we know that you have our backs.

BARTIROMO: Because you think Hong Kong will never be the same?

LAI: Yes.


LAI: Especially, you know, talk to those young people, they are now fighting for this resistance.


LAI: Yes. So, and also maybe send your senator and congressmen to Hong Kong and hold their hands, hold Hong Kong people's hands and...



LAI: ... hands.

BARTIROMO: Jimmy Lai, thank you very much for your courage.

LAI: Thank you.

BARTIROMO: It's good to have you on the program.

LAI: Thank you.

BARTIROMO: Jimmy Lai joining us there.

Up next, we are talking with the House Foreign Affairs ranking member. Congressman Michael McCaul is here on why his committee approved billions of dollars in arms sales to another area under threat from China. That's Taiwan.

We're looking ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures" when we come right back.

Stay with us.


BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

U.S. lawmakers welcomed the president of Taiwan for her first official state visit last week, despite strong objections from the Chinese government, which claims that -- the nation of Taiwan as part of the People's Republic.

The visit coming just a day after the Defense Department approved $2 billion in arms sales to Taiwan.

Joining me right now is Congressman Michael McCaul, who was one of the lawmakers to meet with the Taiwanese president.

And it is good to see you this morning, sir. Thanks so much for joining me.

REP. MICHAEL MCCAUL, R-TX: Thanks, Maria. Good to be here.


We were just talking about China with Jimmy Lai. Tell me what you spoke with the Taiwanese president about. Obviously, this is something that is not going to go over well with China.

MCCAUL: Not at all.

And I think our support for Taiwan really frustrates the Chinese. The Chinese are getting very aggressive in Hong Kong, as you just heard. They are also getting very aggressive in Taiwan.

I talked to the madam president. She thinks they are going to interfere in her elections to get a Chinese puppet, if you will, elected, just like the case I dealt with in the late 1990s that directed us to China aerospace, director of Chinese intelligence, putting money into the Clinton campaign because of the policies.

This has been going on for a long time, Maria. But it's really hitting a hot spot right now. And we have to support Taiwan. They stand for freedom and democracy in the region. And that's precisely why Chairman Engel and I approved the military sales to Taiwan of $2.2 billion, so Taiwan can protect themselves from China.

BARTIROMO: Yes, let's talk about that.

You mentioned, first of all, the Taiwanese elections. That's January 11, 2020. She's expecting the Chinese to interfere in that election.

As far as these -- this equipment that you're talking about, the military equipment, $2 billion, what does Taiwan want this for? Tell me about the conversation around that military equipment. Your committee has to oversee all sales of military equipment to foreigners.

MCCAUL: That's right.

I and the Chairman Engel approve all foreign military and commercial sales. The administration notified us of their intent to sale $2.2 billion Javelin missiles, Abrams tanks, a lot of, you know, grenades, very self-defense in posture, but it sends a very strong message to China.

As I said to their convention Friday night, we say, don't mess with Texas. Don't mess with Taiwan. We're going to arm Taiwan, so she can defend herself from what's become a very aggressive Chinese Communist Party right on their doorstep.

BARTIROMO: Wow. And some of those systems, which should points out, are made by Lockheed Martin.

The president was with Lockheed Martin, the CEO, Marillyn Hewson, last week. I guess there's even further alliance between Lockheed and the government, given the fact that they are going to keep some of their production in Pennsylvania, which was a big deal to the president.

Look, I have got to get into Taiwan with you, Congressman.

Let's take a short break. And then I want to ask you why we are also selling to Taiwan. We're also selling to Turkey. But Turkey is doing something that's raising some eyebrows. We're selling them military equipment, but they are also buying from Russia.

Quick break, and then we will talk about that.

More with Congressman Michael McCaul when we come right back. Stay with us.


BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

And I'm back with Congressman Michael McCaul, ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

And, Congressman, before I get into what I want to ask you about Turkey, let me get your take on the authorization for military force bill.

You made some comments on the floor this week basically pushing back on any NDAA amendments that would repeal that authorization. Where do you sit on this, as we look at a new threat from Iran and we look at provocations from China, et cetera?

MCCAUL: I think it is a very dangerous, reckless policy by the Democrats to repeal the 2001 AUMF with no replacement to it.

I'm all for arguing about updating the 2001 AUMF after 9/11, but this would legalize -- or -- I'm sorry -- illegalize all global counterterrorism operations in the world that we're conducting.

And then they want to repeal the 2002 with Iraq. And, of course, we know ISIS is still a threat in Iraq. And, then, finally, they want to preemptively put forward an AUMF for Iran, even though the president has not gone to war with Iran. In fact, every indication I have seen is, he doesn't want to go to war with Iran.

That's why he didn't respond back militarily after they shot down a U.S. military asset. He's trying to use a diplomatic route here. So, these are all three very -- I think very misguided.

BARTIROMO: Yes, even as Iran is pretty clearly telling us they want to enrich uranium further and break the terms of that Iran deal.

All right, quickly on Turkey now, I know that we're selling Turkey military equipment, your committee overseeing that. They are also buying military equipment from Russia.

MCCAUL: Very problematic.

You have a NATO ally buying Russian military equipment. I sat down with the foreign minister of Turkey and the ambassador, and warned them, just as Secretary Pompeo did, that you can't have it both ways. You can't be a NATO ally and buy Russian military equipment.

And what endangers it even more so, we offered them the Patriot missile battery system. They chose the Russian instead. This actually blocks the F-35 sales, because the S-400 actually tracks our F-35s and would put our F-35 planes in jeopardy if Turkey goes forward, which it appears, Maria, that they are doing.

And then what makes it even more egregious is that this will now kick in the Russian sanctions bill that we -- Lindsey Graham and I passed, you know, last year. Now we have to look at, are we going to sanction a NATO ally for buying Russian military equipment?

I think Erdogan is making a serious mistake. I would urge him and his administration to reject Russian military sales and buy American.


And, by the way, we should point out that that S-400 that they are buying from Russia can actually shoot down the F-35.

MCCAUL: Precisely.

BARTIROMO: I understand.

MCCAUL: They're incongruent. You can't have both of them in the same country.


MCCAUL: We have a military base in Turkey, which even complicates it even that much more.

BARTIROMO: That's really frightening.

All right, real quick, before you go, look, you heard Lindsey Graham earlier on the border bill. You tried this. You had the Goodlatte-McCaul bill. You dealt with DACA. You dealt with the loopholes. And what happened?

MCCAUL: We fixed it, I mean, $25 billion for border.

We had a merit-based immigration system. We, most importantly, did away the legal loopholes, these asylum laws that we need to change, because that's the magnet that the cartels know how to exploit to get in family units into the United States, and within 20 -- in 20 days.

BARTIROMO: But the Democrats wouldn't sign it.

MCCAUL: Every Democrat voted against it. And we had a DACA fix as well.

And it's very unfortunate we didn't pass that.

BARTIROMO: Sir, it's great to have you on the program this morning. Thanks so much for joining me.

MCCAUL: No, thanks, Maria.

BARTIROMO: Congressman Michael McCaul.

That will do it for us. Have a great Sunday, everybody. I'm Maria Bartiromo.

I will see you next week on FOX Business.

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