This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," February 18, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SEAN HANNITY, HOST: A busy news night. Welcome to "Hannity."
We begin tonight with a Fox News alert. We have brand newg information in the case of Jussie Smollett. Now, remember, in January, he told police that he had been brutally attacked on the streets of Chicago by two white men shouting anti-gay, anti-black slurs, and chanting this is MAGA country. Well, tonight, it's Jussie Smollett who appears to be under investigation for elaborately orchestrating a hoax. We'll have a lot more on the story coming up.
Now, also, despite obvious red flags in the Smollett case, well, predictably, the hate Trump media and their friends in the Democratic Party, they champion the story as unadulterated facts from the get-go. And, of course, propping up a fake emotional narrative based on fake news, no investigative reporting, fake evidence, nothing new for the deranged left. Take for example their hatred of all things Donald Trump.
Two years, reckless, hysterical, breathless fake news coverage of the so- called Trump Russia collusion with zero evidence, all while ignoring real evidence of Russia collusion with their 2016 candidate of choice, Hillary Rodham Clinton. We now see their unbridled support for socialism in America and we see it at the state and the federal level, as we begin our socialist watch, HANNITY socialist watch in America, including where I am right now. I'm in the state of New York.
And according to the Tax Foundation, the residents of the Empire State where I live endured the highest tax burden cumulatively than any other state in the Union. Year after year, the New York solution to every single solitary problem, raise taxes, higher and higher and higher with the worst infrastructure, oh, and by the way, only on the ridge, as they define it.
According to the far left, borderline socialist lawmakers, in Albany, the government could solve all problems, provide for all citizens, if only the wealthy paid their fair share. One of those politicians, the governor himself, Andrew Cuomo, is finding out the hard way that even on the state and local level, socialism doesn't work, what should be a lesson for all of us, especially on the new green deal.
Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. ANDREW CUOMO, D-N.Y.: The collections are down to about 30 percent of the target. That is about a $2.3 billion drop in revenues. $2.3 billion as a drop at this point in revenues is as serious as a heart attack.
SALT encourages high-income New Yorkers to move to other states, and what you have to remember is even if a small number of high income taxpayers leave, it has a dramatic effect on this tax base, tax the rich, tax the rich, tax the rich. We did. Now, God forbid, the rich leave.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: And the rich are leaving. The state with the some of the highest taxes of my countries are now t facing a 2.3 -- massive budget shortfall. Why? Because their citizens are fleeing in droves. Get this -- nearly 10 of every 1,000 residence left the state between 2016 and 2017.
In 2017, over 63,000 New Yorkers -- they moved to a state with no income tax, Florida, a state with no other taxes as well, and much lower taxes.
And it's not just New York. Look at these numbers. Between 2006 and 2017, the high tax state of California saw a net loss of 1 million residents. Last year alone, and other net loss of more than 130,000. In 2017, over 63,000 Californians, they moved to Texas -- again, no personal income tax in Texas.
And it's not just that residents are fleeing California, so our major businesses. Look at this. Toyota, Nissan, Carl's Jr., Jamba Juice, Occidental Petroleum, and so many others recently fled California. As a matter of fact, in a nine-year period, 13,000 businesses said goodbye to California, 1,800 businesses left alone in 2017, 299 of them went to Texas.
And this comes as California plans to enact its own statewide single-payer health care plan, forcing their citizens to pay more in taxes and they will foot the bill for health care for every citizen, every noncitizen, every illegal immigrant, who comes to the state. As a matter of fact, if you need health care, once they implement that plan, go out to California. It's free.
Meanwhile, the former bankrupt city of Stockton, California, oh, they are now sending residents debit cards loaded with $500. It's now part of a universal guaranteed income experiment.
By the way, taxpayers of California, New York, Illinois, New Jersey, Connecticut, well, look at your states. You see the trend that is going on here? It's not rocket science. States with high taxes, burdensome regulations, massive government programs, they are driving people and businesses away, leaving fewer and fewer taxpayers to deal with a bigger and bigger tax bill as costs associated with government entitlement programs are exploding.
This is a death spiral. Not unlike, by the way, what we have seen with every big government socialist fantasy. Oh, look at this, the richest man in the U.K., oh, he just moved to Monaco. Why? To avoid a 4 billion-pound tax bill.
By the way, Great Britain is going to lose the tax revenue of the richest guy. And if we're not careful, the exact same thing could happen right here at home.
This is why when we talk about the New Green Deal, you look at this massive Ponzi scheme of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and every liberal and every Democrat, what, they want the federal government to get rid of all fossil fuels, all gas powered cars, all gas powered ovens, get rid of airplanes, we are going to have high-speed trains that will take you straight to Asia and take a sailboat over to Europe. Then we'll probably, you know, I can't wait for the high-speed train to go straight to Australia -- by the way, all in ten years.
And she wants the government to pay for everybody, family leave, medical leave, family vacations, retirement, higher education, health care, housing, and to put a cherry on top, guaranteed income for anyone who is unable or unwilling to work. Oh, guaranteed healthy food. Can't wait to see the menu.
And the government -- well, they want the government to renovate every single solitary building in America to ensure energy efficiency. This fantasy is going to cost you, we, the taxpayers trillions upon trillions of dollars, doubling, tripling the federal budget immediately, and simultaneously removing the entire lifeblood of our economy. Oil, gas, and coal, which we are now finally out-producing every other country on the face of the earth.
But get this, Spartacus, Cory Booker, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, and, of course, Bernie Sanders, they love the New Green Deal, and this madness. Spartacus actually called the Green New Deal affordable.
Those left-wing radicals, they are all vying to be your next president. Dozens of other high-ranking lawmakers in the Senate and the House also support this foolish, radical, extreme lurch toward a socialist utopia. Great bumper stickers, great promises, platitudes, everything is free, free, free, guaranteed, guaranteed, poverty, no problem, everything, keep your doctor, keep your plan, save money -- oh, that didn't happen. More false promises.
And unlike California, New York, the federal government, they actually have power to print money. Now, the once wealthy, oil-rich nation of Venezuela, they try to cover the cost of their massive socialist programs. What did they do? They printed money.
Now, the country, look at this, descending into chaos. No health care, no food, no medicine, inflation rates that top 800 percent. The president addressed this in Miami earlier today speaking out against the surge of this lurch toward socialism right here in this country. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Socialism is not about justice. It's not about equality. It's not about lifting up the poor. Socialism is about one thing only: power for the ruling class.
To those who would try to impose socialism on the United States, we, again, deliver a very simple message: America will never be a socialist country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Power for the ruling class. And the left's Green New Deal dream is Venezuela's reality today, Cuba's reality today, to former Soviet Union's demise, and it's inhumane, immoral, totally destructive.
At the end of the day, socialism is about one thing, one thing only, power for those in charge. A lot of promises, they'll all be broken. Power over your life, your decisions, your money, nationalizing every industry in America.
This green new deal passes, the American dream dies at the same time. Sadly, it's not the only insane and instructive policy that is actively now being promoted by this new, extreme, radical socialist left.
So, we begin tonight's "Hannity watch" on border security. We do remind you that we told you that Democrats want open borders. And yes, we're right. There he is, Bozo, Beto O'Rourke, and Kirsten Gillibrand, both now calling for our existing border walls to be torn down.
And Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez actually compared the border wall to the Berlin wall. Maybe someone needs to get the congresswoman a history book because that wall served a much different purpose. That was keeping East German citizens from escaping to freedom, the other side of the wall.
And over the weekend, we had a group of far left activists actually storming into a border patrol museum and deface pictures of the fallen agents. Beyond disgusting.
And that comes as a massive drug operation in North Carolina led to the arrest of six illegal immigrants, linked to a deadly Mexican cartel. Yes, one of the many reasons we need a wall. That's why we need to secure the border. That's why the president's emergency action will ultimately win back in court.
Even legal scholar Jonathan Turley, he believes the action will be upheld, as I do. But as the suits against the president's action work their way up to the Supreme Court, well, he's got the money, in the meantime, to keep on building and repairing the wall. With the $1.375 billion guaranteed to him, in the latest budget compromise, and, of course, the money that he will reallocate from other places in the government, which he has every right to do.
And meanwhile, as the president continues his work to secure and protect the country, many in the deep state, well, they have other goals as we report in our "Hannity Watch" on the biggest abuse of power corruption scandal in history. And it's much worse than we thought. Look, for example, Andrew McCabe, over the weekend, admitting to plotting a bureaucratic coup when he was serving in the FBI before he was fired for lying and leaking some five or six times.
Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCOTT PELLEY, CBS NEWS ANCHOR: Rosenstein was actually openly talking about whether there was a majority of the cabinet he would vote to remove the president.
ANDREW MCCABE, FORMER FBI ACTING DIRECTOR: That's correct. Counting votes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Andrew McCabe, Rod Rosenstein should be very worried tonight, along with Strzok, and Page, and Baker, and Comey, the rest of them, a lot more of this unbelievable, despicable story in our mini monologue later in the show. Also, Senator Graham is here. He will weigh in.
First, we do have big breaking news out of Chicago and the case of actor Jussie Smollett. Now, unfortunately tonight, it looks like everything that we have been saying about the media in this country, and the unhinged Hollywood left in this country is more true than ever.
Remember, late last month, the "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett said he was a victim of a hate crime attack in Chicago. Smollett claims the attack was politically motivated. He said the attackers are --hurled anti-gay's lawyers and said, quote, this is MAGA country, Make America Great Again.
Smollett told police a rope was put around his neck, chemical was poured on him, and then he pointed out the glaring red flags from the get-go in this story, friends of mine in Chicago from day one warning me, don't get ahead of this story. And they were right.
And you know what? On this show, as we always do, we don't rush to judgment. We let investigations unfold and facts play out.
And today, the police say, quote, the trajectory of the investigation is now shifted and they are probing whether it was all a hoax orchestrated by Smollett himself. According to new reports, two brothers who were alleged friends of Smollett, they told police that the actor actually paid them $3,500 to stage the attack and fact they said they rehearsed the attack.
Remember, just last Thursday, Smollett remains defiant. He was on ABC with Robin Roberts, saying that doubters were just scared of the truth. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JUSSIE SMOLLETT, ACTOR: Then it became a thing of like, oh, how can you doubt that? Like how do you not believe that? It's the truth. Then it became a thing of like, oh, it's not necessarily that you don't believe that this is the truth, you don't even want to see the truth.
ROBIN ROBERTS, ABC ANCHOR: Why do you think you were targeted?
SMOLLETT: I can't just assume. I mean, I come really, really hard against 45. I come really, really hard against his administration.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Now, Smollett's attorneys tonight are denying that he staged the attack but the evidence is mounting. There is a bigger picture here and it's one we have shown you on this show time and time again.
We know the media and the left wing, they hate Trump. Literally, the abusive, biased media in this country, they always rush to judgment. They are wrong so often, it's scary, consumed with rage, hatred of all things drum. It has now evolved into a pathological, borderline psychotic derangement and perpetual victimhood.
For them, facts come second, breathless hysteria always comes first. Remember in the immediate aftermath of the report, everyone, from celebrities, politicians, members of the media, they, as usual, rushed right to judgment. Look at the 2020 candidates, Kamala Harris, Spartacus Booker, took to Twitter comparing that attack to a modern-day lynching.
In a now deleted tweet, Speaker Pelosi called it, quote, an affront to our humanity. And the Hollywood left, was just as fast to jump to these conclusions. Actress Ellen Page used the Smollett saga to attack Vice President Pence and she wasn't the only one.
Meathead director Rob Reiner accusing the president of injecting homophobia into America's bloodstream.
So, when will the unhinged left realize they are the ones perpetuating hate and division, rushing to judgment every time and feeling hysteria, fake news, over and over? Remember, all of this comes right on the heels of the BuzzFeed fiasco. The Covington Catholic students being smeared in just seconds and the attacks on Justice Kavanaugh, not true.
When will they look in the mirror? When will they realize the face of hate is into wearing a red hat? What is wrong with Make America Great Again? You think we can all agree on that.
But don't expect them to change anytime soon. Look at, for example, fake news CNN Humpty Dumpty Stelter, well, we're blowing this way out of proportion, because according to him, the media actually covered the story right.
No. They got it wrong, Humpty. And, of course, per usual, he's just flat out wrong.
And take a look at these headlines. BuzzFeed, "Celebrities rally behind Jussie Smollett after brutal attack in Chicago." "Vanity Fair's" headlines asserted that Smollett was attacked by, quote, "two MAGA supporters."
CNN's April Ryan tweeting that it was a hate crime. Oh, guilty by accusation, again. The list goes on and on.
This is the problem when you write the story first to try to plug-in facts later. The good news is, this malfeasance is now being exposed pretty much on a daily basis. The bad news journalism in the country, I have so journalism is dead and buried.
We got a lot of ground to cover. Joining us first is FOX News contributor Dan Bongino, nationally syndicated Salem Radio host, Larry Elder.
Larry, I was ticked off from the get-go, my friends of mine in Chicago who said, I'm telling you, just wait. Looking out for my best interest, and I wait anyway. And I know you wait. I know Dan waits.
LARRY ELDER, SALEM RADIO NATIONAL HOST/AM 870: Right.
HANNITY: But the rush here, so predictable. Larry?
ELDER: Sean, first of all, let's get Jussie Smollett an Emmy. He deserves an Emmy, just like Al Sharpton did when he pushed his fraud. The reason people believe in it is because they want to believe it. They believe Donald Trump is a racist and they believe racism remains a major problem in America and you put those two together, voila, the story had legs.
It was complete crock. And the reason it's complete crock because it never happened. Question is, why do so many people believe it? The answer is, they despise Donald Trump. Donald Trump is a racist. Donald Trump's supporters are racist and homophobic and people that are engaged in violence.
So, they wanted to believe it and ran with it and now they are embarrassed. Isn't it good news that is not true? Isn't it good news we don't live in a country where if you walk into the street at 2:00 in the morning, to get a sandwich, you have to be fearful that because you don't like Trump, you're going to be attacked? Isn't this good news?
Instead of people being relieved, there are angry at people that are laughing at Jussie Smollett. Why don't we celebrate the fact that racism is no longer a huge problem in America anymore? It is a lie.
HANNITY: But, you know, it is fascinating because people that were most disproportionally, negatively impacted, Dan Bongino, by Obama's horrific, predictable policies were Hispanic-Americans, African-Americans, the people that have been disproportionately affected in a greater prospect greater prospect on my positive way, setting record after record, are African- Americans, Hispanic-Americans, Asian-Americans, women in the workplace, youth unemployment. Conservatism works in spite of the constant lies about what conservatism is about.
DAN BONGINO, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Yes. I mean, Sean, conservatives stand for things that ultimately benefit the minority community. The ridiculous minimum wage, which keeps some people who have not accumulated enough skill to get out of the workforce. School choice, which gives a lot of minority parents in option to educate their kids. Policing and neighborhoods like this.
And that's the point I want to make on this. Sean, real damage was done. Let's not forget. The police assets dedicated to this in a city which regretfully so with a very high crime rate, the police assets dedicated this for over a week now to investigate what appears to be, by all reports, a hoax.
Can you imagine the murders and the crimes and the muggings and the burglaries that could potentially go unsolved because of all of the police assets and PR assets dedicated to this?
HANNITY: Watch should happen, if it all turns out to be a hoax here, what should happen to this guy? You're right, all the police resources, all the division, accusations, what happens?
BONGINO: Oh, he needs to go to jail, Sean. There has to be an example set.
HANNITY: Yes, Larry?
ELDER: Sean, he should clearly be prosecuted for filing a false police report. But also, let's talk about what he said. He accused two white people of committing an act of violence.
That is a hate crime. He also should be charged with a hate crime. Why shouldn't he be charged with endangering anybody who wears a MAGA cap? Anybody who wear a cap after this incident has to look over his shoulders or her shoulder for fear that somebody might do an act of retribution because of what allegedly happened to Jussie Smollett.
So, the man should be charged, not only with filing a false police report, but also to be filed -- with filling -- with making a hate crime.
HANNITY: All right, guys. Thank you, both.
We have a lot more news breaking and to cover. When we come back, "Hannity watch," a powerful mini monologue on how the deep state not only is turning on each other over, they try to steal an election, and undo a duly elected president, and get him out. We'll talk to Senator Lindsey Graham, who is bowing action on what he calls this attempted coup against the president and a lot more ground to cover. Straight ahead tonight on HANNITY.
HANNITY: And it's a Fox News alert. More breaking news tonight.
Fox News can confirm that the deputy A.G., Rod Rosenstein, is expected to leave the Department of Justice in mid-March. Now, this comes on the heels of bombshell revelations relating to his conduct while other department. Remember, back in 2016 come with a small group of high-ranking, unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats with a dark political agenda, they sought to undermine then candidate, then president-elect, and ultimately undue the election of we, the people.
First, they rigged and fixed the Hillary Clinton email investigation so she would not be charged with the Espionage Act felonies and, of course, obstruction of justice because we could all delete 33,000 subpoenaed emails, right?
And now, we are learning that this agenda was even deeper than we ever realized. With that so-called insurance policy, put in place to bludgeon President Trump should he win, put in place by the very people that believed that Trump voters were smelly Walmart people, Hillary should win 100 million to zero. That's why they save their favorite candidate.
Anyone else would have been charged. And according to disgraced FBI official Andrew McCabe, he is saying in May 2017, there were actual discussions with Deputy A.G. Rod Rosenstein to wear a wire and meetings with the president in the hopes of invoking the 25th Amendment? Were they planning on a warranty here? Take down a duly elected commander-in-chief because they are chosen candidate lost?
And as our own Catherine Herridge reports, two so-called unnamed cabinet members were actually on board with this insane plan. Coup.
And while Rosenstein has offered a carefully worded denial, McCabe says that it was Rod Rosenstein who, quote, was absolutely serious about recording the president.
Now, I want to be clear, it doesn't matter if you are Democrat or Republican, liberal, conservative here. This abuse of power should scare everybody. It's almost happened in the United States of America. We're not the banana republic.
Those that are shouting the loudest that we need to preserve our institutions, well, they are the biggest defenders of weaponizing the powerful tools of intelligence. They thought they knew better than the American people.
First, it was about stealing an election, stopping Trump from becoming president, then staging a coup to remove a duly elected president to pursue their own self-serving agenda, because they are smarter than us smelly Walmart people. It was to preserve the swap and the deep state.
And it's all on full display because now they are starting to turn on each other, because now they are panicking and they know they got caught. Remember, Comey, Rosenstein, Andrew McCabe, Sally Yates, all of them signed off on Hillary Clinton's FISA warrant application use that Hillary's bought and paid for, unverified, uncorroborated, phony Russian research. And then not only propagandize and lie to the American people to help Hillary win, well, then, of course, they used it as the basis, bulk of information in the FISA application, four times.
They certify that that phone he bought and paid for dossier was verified. We now know it was never verified and that they made material, false statements to a FISA court denying a fellow American's constitutional rights. Even a dossier's author under oath in Great Britain in an interrogatory said, I don't know if any of this is true. It's 50/50. It's raw intelligence.
They used the Clinton bought and paid for Russian lies. They first used it to lie to you and manipulate you and propagandize you, the American people, before the election to help Hillary. Then, of course, to spy on the Trump campaign before and after the election. Then to launch this phony witch hunt, Mueller probe to cover their own misdeeds, their insurance policy after the president was rightly firing Comey.
And all the while, Rosenstein apparently scheming to surveilled the president, and invoke the 25th Amendment to tape him?
Attorney General, Mr. William Barr, it's up to you to stand on the Constitution to stop this type of corruption, to reform this great agency that we all love, and that is the FBI. Not these guys. But you owe it to the rank-and-file, those guys that do the honest work every day, and hold these individuals in the upper echelon accountable and re-establish credibility to the embattled FBI and DOJ.
Kimberley Strassel, Wall Street Journal, says, "That's the Justice Department Mr. Barr arrives to lead - a hot mess of finger-pointing, leaks, planted press narratives, obstruction, and extraordinary self- righteousness."
It's long overdue for decisive action in ending this dysfunction and this corruption. Of course, these major revelations are being ignored by Democrats and their willing accomplices in the hate-Trump media. They're even laying the groundwork for more investigations into their "collusion narrative" with no information.
Look at Shifty Adam Schifft (ph), biggest liar in Congress. Look at what he says.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DANA BASH, ANCHOR, CNN: He finds that there was no direct collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. Will you accept that?
REP. ADAM SCHIFF, D-CALIF.: Well, we're going to have to do our own investigation, and we are. We'll certainly be very interested to learn what Bob Mueller finds.
BASH: Will you accept the findings separate from the investigation that you're doing?
SCHIFF: I will certainly accept them in this way, Dana. I have great confidence in the Special Counsel. And if the Special Counsel represents that he has investigated and not been interfered with and not been able to make a criminal case, then I will believe that he is operating in good faith.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Here to discuss how Republicans plan to combat all this corruption, this abuse of power, South Carolina Senator, that's Lindsey Graham.
Senator, I just went over and I re-read the IG report. 568 pages, 868 mentions on McCabe, 581 mentions of Strzok, 358 mentions of Page. They looked into this issue of collusion for nine months. We have testimony from Page, Comey and others that they had nothing. That's in May when they appointed the Special Counsel. What is your reaction to invoking the 25th amendment, taping the President, using Hillary pay for dossier and lying to FISA court judges and applications?
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-S.C.: Well, it's one of the most significant moments in American history if it's true. You had the Acting Head of the FBI talking to the Deputy Attorney General about replacing the President. So what I'll do, oversight is part of my job. We do have checks and balances. So the Congress will watch those who watch us. I'll try to find out who was in these meetings and talk to all of them and figure out who is lying because somebody is lying.
HANNITY: Well, I - so this is within your jurisdiction. You're going to be able to do a--
HANNITY: --deep-dive. When you look at Christopher Steele does this dossier, Hillary Clinton funnels money from - to a law firm, to an out research group, hires Steele. Steele, under oath and threat of perjury, says, oh, I don't know if any of this is true. Your memo, the Grassley- Graham memo, says the bulk of information that was applications--
HANNITY: --were the Clinton Russian lies. Is that a crime?
HANNITY: Is that a fraud (ph) on the court?
GRAHAM: Well, you certify it under oath. So I'll be looking at two things. I'll be looking at before the election and after the election. I'll be looking at whether or not the FISA warrant process was abused, that the document used to get a warrant, is it really still a bunch of political garbage? How could you certify to the court that this document is accurate if you never verified it?
I'd be looking as to whether or not the counter-intelligence investigation was actually a back doorway to get into the Trump campaign and the real motive was to take the campaign down and bring criminal charges. Counter- intelligence investigation, Sean (ph), are designed to protect the target, which was the Trump campaign against foreign influence. They didn't act that way. They acted as if they are out to get Trump.
HANNITY: Do you - do you agree with me that Hillary Clinton committed felonies, top-secret classified information, a violation of the Espionage Act? You are a great lawyer. If I hired you and I was being charged with obstruction for deleting 33,000 subpoenaed emails, acid-washing my hard drive, busting up my devices with hammers, do you think you can keep me out of jail? Because as great as you might be as a lawyer, you Trey Gowdy, Dershowitz (inaudible), I don't think you (inaudible) Geneva. You guys can't keep me out of jail for that, could you?
GRAHAM: Well, let's put it this way. If you're home, don't do what she did because I doubt if you'll have the same outcome.
HANNITY: Yeah, don't do this at home.
GRAHAM: The bottom line is, yeah, the techniques they used in her investigation, compare that to what they've done in the Trump investigation. If you really want Trump to lose, how can you charge her? So I've always believed that the reason she wasn't charged as much as anything else is that the people investigating her wanted Trump to lose. Now, I don't know if that's true or not, but that's what we're going to look at. It sure sounds that way.
HANNITY: Let me ask that--
GRAHAM: The - yeah.
HANNITY: OK. So you can fire Comey for any reason. How do we know? James Comey admitted that.
HANNITY: So look at Rod Rosenstein. He is the one that recommended firing Comey. He signed the last FISA application, the third renewal, the fourth one, in total. He is that - we have McCabe who - well, the IG report says - lied five times. Do we believe McCabe or do we believe Rosenstein? Because one of them is lying. Correct?
GRAHAM: Absolutely. But let's get back to the warrant, the FISA warrant process. The only reason that warrant was issued was because of the dossier. The dossier was prepared by a foreign agent, paid for by the Democratic Party. And Comey gave the dossier to the President after he was elected, saying, "You need to know about this. We can't prove any of it. We just want you to know." That's the same document they used to give to the court, swearing under oath it was reliable. How do you square that?
HANNITY: Let me ask you last question. Breaking just now, the announcement of Rosenstein's replacement could come as early as this week. Trump administration official tells Fox News the Attorney General Bill Barr has picked Jeffrey Rosen as his Deputy AG? What's quick reaction? We got to go.
GRAHAM: I don't know if it's true, but that would be a good pick. And this investigation is just beginning. We'll get to the bottom of it, I promise.
HANNITY: Senator, you and the Attorney General, if we're going to have equal justice under the law, if we're going to have equal application and we're going to have a constitution, you guys need to get to the bottom of this. A big responsibility on both of your shoulders.
All right. Coming up next, we have an important update to tell you about the Jussie Smollett case and so much more. Don't go anywhere on this breaking news night.
HANNITY: All right. Joining us now with the latest on Jussie Smollett story is our own Trace Gallagher in our Los Angeles bureau tonight. Trace?
TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Sean, for the record, Chicago police just told us they have not heard from Jussie Smollett or his lawyers. This comes amid reports saying that when the actor received a racist letter back in January and it did not draw a bigger reaction, he paid two brothers $3,500 to rehearse, then stage the attack. One brother held the rope and poured the bleach. They wore a red hat, yelled slurs and said this was MAGA country.
When Smollett first claimed he was attacked, some 2020 Democratic candidates made snap judgment. Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker, both called it "an attempted modern day lynching." But now, Booker and Harris are more reticent. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. KAMALA HARRIS, D-CALIF.: I think that once the investigation is concluded, then we can all comment.
SEN. CORY BOOKER, D-N.J.: Well, the information is still coming out. I'm going to withhold until all the information actually comes out--
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GALLAGHER: And journalists also jumped the gun. American Urban Radio Networks' White House reporter April Ryan tweeted, "This attack on Jussie Smollett is a hate crime and should be treated as such." GQ magazine added, "The racist, homophobic attack on Jussie Smollett is far-right America's endgame." We should know there is still no word if prosecutors might seek an arrest warrant for Jussie Smollett.
HANNITY: All right. Trace Gallagher in Los Angeles tonight.
Here with more reaction, Campus Reform Editor-in-Chief, Fox News contributor, Lawrence Jones; Civil rights attorney, Daryl Parks.
Daryl, this rush to judgment is not new. We see it - OK. Duke lacrosse; UVA; Cambridge police; Ferguson; with Freddie Gray, Baltimore; the case I first met you on, Trayvon/George Zimmerman; constant rush to judgment by people that should know better. At what point do we now begin to hold the media accountable? And what should the punishment now that we hear these two guys are saying to the police that they orchestrated it, were paid money and they even rehearsed it?
DARYL PARKS, CIVIL RIGHTS ATTORNEY: Well, Sean, a few things. Remember what? We clearly see not a TMZ jump the gun on this case and (inaudible) running this information. But probably most importantly though, now we see where this alleged hate crime, right, will cast doubt on other hate crimes that are legitimate. A serious concern-
HANNITY: What should happen to him--
PARKS: --to be very concerned about.
HANNITY: --and what should happen to all these media groups, Lawrence, that do this constantly and are wrong all the time?
LAWRENCE JONES, CAMPUS REFORM EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, what you see is happening is that their credibility is being destroyed. First of all, who says this is MAGA country? I've never heard a Trump supporter say that. And by the way, it's not like Trump supporters are actually watching Empire and even know who he is. There were so many holes in this case to begin with.
I told people to wait until all the facts come out. And now you've got Daryl sitting on national TV saying, oh, this is going to hurt other occurrences. No, it won't because most reasonable people rate to the facts and then they want to prosecute the people when they find out that these people have allegedly did something wrong.
PARKS: Without question, let me - first, it's not about me. Seriously, this guy has a serious issue for him to go and to frame this issue, to pay these guys $3,500. He has serious personal issues going on--
JONES: Did you take the bait, Daryl?
PARKS: --that need to be addressed.
JONES: Did you take the bait too? Did you believe him too?
PARKS: No, I did not. Obviously--
JONES: Because that is a problem with you and every other liberal--
PARKS: Trust me. I'm a seasoned lawyer.
JONES: --that decided to take the bait.
PARKS: I want to wait and hear all of the facts. So now--
JONES: Well, there you go. So--
PARKS: --I'm a seasoned lawyer. I--
JONES: --maybe you should tell all your friends in the media and all the other Democrats that go along with this stuff without the facts. They do it all the time.
HANNITY: Wait a minute. You do this--
PARKS: Well, you know what?
HANNITY: Wait a minute. Remember the Duke lacrosse case? I actually went to see and meet the families and kids to get to the bottom line. You know I was down in your case down in Florida. I talked to people before. Look at what happened. Daryl Parks' career was ruined. It was people in the community, eyewitnesses that backed up his story. Everybody said the six cops in Baltimore were going to jail. It never happens, Daryl. Never.
JONES: Not enough evidence.
PARKS: --all facts stand on the own. All facts (ph) stand on the own. Good night.
HANNITY: I didn't even quite hear that. All right. But - whatever.
All right. Still to come. Joe Biden trashing the United States overseas? We've got those sick comments of Crazy Uncle Joe. Also, fake news CNN's anti-Trump derangement even hits a new low. We've got the tape and much more, and a Villain of the Day and your mail. Coming up.
HANNITY: All right. So during a trip to Europe over the weekend, likely 2020 Presidential candidate, crazy Uncle Joe Biden said this about his own country on foreign soil.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT: The America I see values basic human decency, not snatching children from their parents or turning our back on refugees at our border. Americans know that's not right.
BIDEN: The American people understand pleas because it makes us embarrassing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: And his state, it's a slave state. And you can't work at 7-Eleven or a Dunkin' Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent. And oh, this is storybook, Obama is articulate and clean. Also this weekend, Kamala Harris took a pit stop from campaign to do some shopping, but none other than the fake news reporters were actually supposed to be covering her, objectively. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You need something that's fun in your--
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, yeah.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, yeah.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, you God. It's--
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right now (inaudible).
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: I wonder who those reporters will be supporting.
Here with reaction, Former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi; and also a reporter from The Hill and now radio talk show host on the big AM 710-WOR in New York City, the talk of New York, Joe Concha.
Pam, let me start with you. So I'm looking at this and thinking - and you know what? You were Attorney General for all those years. Anyone ever helped you purchase clothes in the media? Because all I read is unbridled attacks because you are closing now pill mills and doing your job in Florida.
PAM BONDI, FORMER FLORIDA ATTORNEY GENERAL: Thank you. Thank you, Sean. Now - if they want to be her friend, be her friend, but don't cover her in a Presidential campaign. If you want to act like a bunch of girlfriends and go shopping with Kamala, that's great, but then they need to recuse themselves and not cover her on the campaign and be correspondents.
I think they have to know by this point they went way over the edge.
HANNITY: The only thing missing I see is like--
BONDI: And then tweeting these pictures out--
BONDI: That's how we know about it. They tweeted the pictures out.
HANNITY: Joe, the only thing that's missing maybe, I don't know, champagne, glass of wine. They're having a good old time and thinking, oh, we're supposed to cover her. Wonder who they are voting for.
JOE CONCHA, MEDIA REPORTER FOR THE HILL & WOR TONIGHT CO-HOST ON 710 WOR: Yeah. Usually, (inaudible) go with these sort of shopping endeavors, Sean. But try to close your eyes and picture for a moment, anybody from CNN or NBC shopping with any female Republican candidate and then in Sex and the City getting this, sharing it on social media without even a hint of self- awareness as far as how this thing looks.
Look, there was a telling poll back in 2016. USA Today asked a thousand likely voters, "Who do you think the media is rooting for? Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump?" By a 10-to-1 margin, they said Hillary Clinton, including a majority of Hillary supporters. In other words, the perception is there that reporters are rooting for a party and a side, and when you do this, it only lends to that perception.
HANNITY: And Pam, it's sort of like the Russia hoax - the Russia lie for two years. And look at all the stories. We have this actor in Chicago and all of this going on, and the media ran with it, just like Obama ran with the Cambridge police, Obama ran with George Zimmerman, Trayvon Martin, so many others ran with Ferguson, UVA, Duke lacrosse, Baltimore, Freddie Gray, and all things hating Trump. This is now standard fare that none of them are objective.
BONDI: It is. It is, and I don't even think it's a perception. I mean, it's clear that they cannot be objective. And it's a shame what that young actor did. I can't believe he did it. I actually liked the show Empire. But to attack the President that way and claiming that these folks did this - no one did this to him.
I thought early on when the police said alleged attack, and police never say that when you have a victim who's injured. I became suspicious then. And now it's all coming out. Even some of his co-stars, I think, were a little hesitant to believe in his story when it happened. But Sean, it's a complete double standard. Could you ever see any reporters going anywhere being--
BONDI: --nice to the President of the United States? I mean--
BONDI: It's a clear--
HANNITY: I will say the President--
BONDI: --double standard in our country.
HANNITY: A huge beat-down when Acosta the other day, Joe, said, wow, this is a manufactured crisis. Never mind the homicides, the sexual assaults, violent assaults, 90 percent of heroine, cartels and gangs. And the President said - turns to the angel mom that was in the audience and said, "Is this manufactured?" No.
CONCHA: And you could hear the angel mom saying, "No, this is real." It was the perfect counter because it wasn't Trump saying it. These were women who lost their loved ones as a result of that. So, yeah, even Jim Acosta didn't have a comeback for that one, Sean.
HANNITY: All right, guys. Good to see you.
We have a Villain of the Day. Wait till you hear. It was crazy. Congresswoman Omar's anti-semitism and your email, as we continue.
HANNITY: All right. This Villain of the Day is really evil. We've known about them for many, many years. Rabid anti-semite, racist, Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam made comments about Congresswoman Omar's anti- semitic comments. He's in full support. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LOUIS FARRAKHAN, LEADER, NATION OF ISLAM: Ms. Omar from Somalia, she's started talking about the Benjamins. And they're trying to make her apologize. And sweetheart, don't do that. You have nothing to apologize for.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Right now, to the mail, but first our question tonight. We asked you what you thought about Andrew McCabe's "60 Minutes" interview.
Michael who writes, "Disturbing. To think that a biased FBI head will use that position in an attempt to undermine a duly elected President, with dubious evidence at best, should frighten every American. Right and left should fear this kind of deep state. Fix it."
Chris writes, "Would have been nice if Scott would have asked him some real questions. Like, what was the insurance policy Andy had in place?"
All right. We are not the hate-Trump media. Let not your heart be troubled. Laura, standing by in D.C. tonight.
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