Sen. Rand Paul on US-Saudi relations; Rep. Martha McSally on race against Kyrsten Sinema

This is a rush transcript from "Fox News Sunday" October 21, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

CHRIS WALLACE, ANCHOR: I'm Chris Wallace.

The U.S. alliance with Saudi Arabia in jeopardy as the country acknowledges that missing journalist is dead.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Saudi Arabia has been a great ally but what happened is unacceptable.

WALLACE: But how to punish the kingdom if evidence shows the Saudi royal family is behind the death of Jamal Khashoggi?

TRUMP: We haven't finished our review. I would prefer that we don't use as retribution canceling $110 billion worth of work.

WALLACE: We'll discuss what happens to Khashoggi and what it means for relations with Saudi Arabia with Republican Senator Rand Paul, a longtime critic of U.S. policy in the Middle East.

Then, there are 16 days until the midterm elections and Republican control of Congress is on the line.

REP. MARTHA MCSALLY, R-ARIZ.: Thank you.

WALLACE: We'll look at one of this year's most competitive Senate races in Arizona, and we'll talk with Congresswoman Martha McSally, only on "Fox News Sunday."

Plus --

TRUMP: This will be an election of Kavanaugh, the caravan, law and order, and common sense.

WALLACE: We'll ask our Sunday panel about President Trump's closing message for the midterms.

And --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.

WALLACE: After disaster strikes, our Power Player of the Week, world famous chef Jose Andres, steps in.

JOSE ANDRES, CHEF: People are always in need of a hot meal, and that's what we do.

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

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WALLACE: And hello again from Fox News in Washington.

Seventeen days after the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi government is finally offering its account of what happened to him. But much of the world is not buying it.

The Saudis say Khashoggi was killed in a fist fight in their consulate in Istanbul. They've arrested 18 people involved in the case and fired five top officials, some with close ties to the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. President Trump says he finds the report credible, but will work with Congress to find ways to punish the Saudi government.

Joining me now from Kentucky, Republican Senator Rand Paul, a key member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Senator, let's start with your reaction to the Saudi account that Khashoggi was killed by accident in a fist fight at the consulate and that the Saudi crown prince had nothing to do with it.

Do you believe the Saudi account?

SEN. RAND PAUL, R-KY.: Absolutely not. I think it's insulting to anyone who's analyzing this with any kind of intelligent background to think that, oh, a fist fight led to a dismemberment with a bone saw. So, no.

But I think we should put this brazen attack, this brazen murder in context with Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia has basically over the decades been the largest state sponsor of radical Islam and violent jihad. They sponsor thousands of madrassas that teach hatred of Christians and Jews and Hindus around the world. So, this isn't the first instance. This is just another in the line of long instances of Saudi insults to the civilized world.

WALLACE: I'm going to get to the larger relationship in a moment, but I want to stay with this case at this point. What do you think was the involvement of the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman? The king has absolved them and in fact has put MBS, as he's known, in charge of the overhaul of Saudi intelligence.

PAUL: I think it stretches credulity to believe the crown prince wasn't involved in this and I think that's the way they're going to write this off. And people in Saudi Arabia ought to be aware when you were told what to do, you go and do it, and then they will execute you and put all the blame on someone else. There's no way 15 people were sent from Saudi Arabia to Turkey to kill a dissident without the approval of the crown prince. And that's why I say we have to be stronger than just saying, oh, we are going to sanction a few of these people and pretend like we're doing something.

I think we really need to discontinue our arms sales to Saudi Arabia and have a long and serious discussion about whether or not they want to be an ally or they want to be an enemy.

WALLACE: Well, you say we got to get tougher. President Trump was asked about the arrest of 18 people involved in the case and the firing of five officials, some of them with close ties to the crown prince. Here's what he had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I think it's a good first step, it's a big step, it's a lot of people. A lot of people involved and I think it's a great first step.

REPORTER: Do you consider it a credible explanation?

TRUMP: I do. I do.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Does President Trump know something that you don't, Senator, or, frankly, do you think he's covering for the Saudis?

PAUL: I think the Saudis are an authoritarian government. They are directed from the top down and you don't have people just going off and doing things on their own. I feel certain that the crown prince was involved and that he directed this and that's why I think we cannot continue to have relations with him.

So, I think is going to have to be replaced, frankly. But I think that sanctions don't go far enough. I think we need to look at the arm sale, because this is not just about this journalist being killed, it's about the war in Yemen where tens of thousands of civilians are being killed. It's about them spreading hatred of Christians and Jews and Hindus throughout the world. I mean, thousands and thousands madrassas teaching radical violence against the West.

The Saudis have not acted as our friend and they need to change their behavior.

WALLACE: I understand that but I'm asking you directly about the president's reaction. He says he finds credible an account that you find incredible. Why do you think he's doing that?

PAUL: Exactly. I don't know the reasoning or can answer for, you know, the president's thought process on this. I can only say I think many of us looking at the situation think this couldn't happen in an authoritarian government without the crown prince being involved.

WALLACE: All right. Let's talk now about punishment and what to do about it. The president says he's going to work with Congress to find a way to sanction the Saudis, but he made it clear one of the things he doesn't want to do. Here he is.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I would prefer that we don't use as retribution canceling $110 billion worth of work, which means 600,000 jobs.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Now, last year, long before all of this. You came within four votes of blocking further arms sales to the Saudis. First of all, what do you think of the chances that you can get those four votes and block them this year? And what about the president's argument that this hundreds of thousands of American jobs?

PAUL: I think if we were to have a vote in the next couple of weeks on whether or not to sell arms to Saudi Arabia, we would win overwhelmingly. And so, I think the powers that be will try to prevent us from having that vote. They have to announce a specific case of arms being sold and my prediction is they'll avoid doing that as long as possible.

With regard to jobs, I don't think arms should ever be seen as a jobs program. Our arms, our military arms, the sophistication of our arms are part of our national defense. These aren't something that are just owned by private companies, they are owned by the country, and I think we should never sell arms to any country in less it's in national security interest.

I think the war in Yemen actually increases our national risk. It makes us less secure in the Middle East. It makes us more likely to be involved in another war in Yemen.

So, I think we should not be supplying the Saudis with bombs. They've been indiscriminately killing civilians. Just in the last month, 50 schoolchildren were killed in the bombing of the school bus. They killed 150 people at a funeral possession.

The Saudis have not been acting in a just fashion. Yemen's one of the poorest planets on the earth. Millions of people there face starvation, over a million people had cholera and the Saudis continue to block their ports. So, no, I don't think that there's a national security reason for us to be involved in the war in Yemen and that's where our arms are going.

So, I would cut off arms sales. It's the only thing the Saudis will listen to.

WALLACE: Well, an interesting figure. Russian President Putin talked about this and he said that he believes that the U.S. has a double standard. He noted that after the alleged poisoning of that Russian spy in Britain that the U.S. expelled 60 Russian diplomats and imposed sanctions and he looks at the lack of action so far and says that's a double standard.

One, does Putin have a point? And beyond blocking arms sales, you say that you don't think the White House is even going to offer them at this point, what else should the U.S. do if anything to punish the Saudis?

PAUL: Well, I think there is a double standard and I think the Saudis need to be treated as who they are in the context of who they are. I don't think they are a friendly ally. They have been spreading hatred of our country for a decade after decade.

With regard to whether we sanction them or whether we have arms sales, I think the arms sales actually will go on. I think they will avoid announcing the arms sales to try to prevent us from blocking them. So, I'm not saying that the Trump administration will stop arms sales. I think they will continue the arms sales and I think this is a danger that Congress, many in Congress will act tough on this and they will pretend to do something, which is sanctions.

But I'm not calling for sanctions really against Saudi Arabia in general, I don't think we should quit trading with Saudi Arabia. I think we should specifically quit aiding and abetting them in an aggressive war in Yemen.

WALLACE: You have been -- as we pointed out, you have been a real skeptic of our relationship with Saudi Arabia for many years and you've certainly given evidence of that today.

But here's a counterargument from President Trump. He says that we depend on Saudi Arabia for cheap oil or cheaper oil. He says we depend on Saudi Arabia as a potential counterweight to Iran and its ambitions in the Middle East and that we can -- we hope that Saudi Arabia will help us broker a peace deal between the Palestinians and the Israelis.

Do you think he's wrong on all those fronts?

PAUL: I think this is thousand-year-old war in the Middle East between Sunni and Shia, and Saudi Arabia is pitted up against Iran. The biggest thing that destabilize the Middle East and I think the president agrees with me on this was the Iraq war.

There was much more of a balance in the Middle East at that time, but if you look at military spending right now, the Saudis and the gulf sheikhdom that are their allies spend eight times more than Iran. And so, there is an arms race, but when we supply arms to Saudi Arabia, Iran responds.

So when we complain about the Iranians having ballistic missiles that they are developing, they are doing that in response to the arming of the Saudis. It's a bilateral arms race that goes on and on. And so, I wouldn't continue it, I don't think we need the Saudis.

The Saudis need us much more than we need them. We have incredible leverage. Their air force is entirely American planes. They can't last a couple of months without parts and mechanics to help them run their air force. We train their pilots.

They are completely dependent on us. We need to tell them to behave, and if they're not going to behave, and that includes cutting off the funding to all these schools that teach hatred of Christians, Jews and Hindus.

WALLACE: I want to get, and we're running out of time, to one final subject. It appears that President Trump is about to pull out, to tell the Russians that we're going to pull out of the INF medium-range missile treaty, a treaty that Ronald Reagan signed with Mikhail Gorbachev back in 1987.

Here was the president yesterday afternoon.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We are the ones who have stayed in the agreement and we have honored the agreement but Russia has not, unfortunately, honored the agreement. So, we are going to terminate the agreement and we're going to fall out.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: I got about a minute left. The president says he will stay in the treaty only if Russia and China, which was not a signatory to the INF treaty, will abide by its terms. Your reaction to this, sir?

PAUL: I think it's a big, big mistake to flippantly get out of this historic agreement that Reagan and Gorbachev signed. This was a big part of Reagan's legacy and we should not get rid of it. It was an important step. We went from 64,000 nuclear-tipped missiles down to 15,000. It has been an historic agreement.

I think what we should do instead of getting out event is I've asked the president, and I advised him privately and in public, that he should appoint nuclear negotiators, nuclear arms control negotiators to actually work with the Soviets. We have complaints that they are not in compliance. They also have complaints that some of our missile launchers in Europe are not in compliance.

Let's have a rational discussion with experts on this and see if we can resolve it.

WALLACE: You sent out a tweet that said you think this is one reason why John Bolton should stay out of this. Why him personally?

PAUL: I think John Bolton is the one advising the president to get out of the INF Treaty and I don't think he recognizes the important achievement of Reagan and Gorbachev on this. Look, I spent an hour with Gorbachev a couple of months ago and they still regard this, this reduction of nuclear arms and a disaster that would be nuclear war, I think in a very sincere manner, at least from Gorbachev, that reducing the arms was very important and I don't want to see another nuclear arms race with Russia or with any other country.

I'm all for trying to sign an agreement with China, but that would have to be a brand-new agreement and there's no reason to end the agreement we have with Russia.

WALLACE: Senator Paul, thank you. Thanks for your time. Always good to talk with you, sir.

PAUL: Thank you.

WALLACE: Up next, we'll bring in our Sunday group to discuss the Saudi account of what happened to Jamal Khashoggi and what it means for relations between our two countries.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Saudi Arabia is our partner. They are our ally against Iran and against missiles and against what they're doing trying to take over the Middle East.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: President Trump standing by our alliance with Saudi Arabia that now faces a tough test going forward. And it's time now for our Sunday group, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, Charles Lane from The Washington Post, former Democratic Congresswoman Jane Harman, director of the Woodrow Wilson Center, and Marc Short, former director of legislative affairs for President Trump.

Speaker Gingrich, what do you make of the Saudi account of what happened to Jamal Khashoggi and who was responsible, and how severely do you think we should punish the Saudis?

NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: First of all, their explanation is insultingly stupid. I mean, the idea that this guy walked in the room with 15 security people, got in a fight and was accidentally killed and they happened to have apparently an ability to dismember him and get rid of him that happened to be there. This is just stupid.

WALLACE: So, why is the president saying it's credible?

GINGRICH: The president is trying to walk a tight rope between -- and I think it's a big problem, not a small one. On the one hand, you don't -- you don't want to break the alliance with the Saudis. On the other hand, you cannot teach a 33-year-old crown prince that he can get away with things that have this outrageous and this stupid, or he will be out of control for the next 40 years.

WALLACE: So, what would you do?

GINGRICH: I think -- my guess is they will get to selective sanctions and they're going to be very clear about it. I also think that -- I'm guessing, but my guess is that Pompeo is saying pretty aggressively, you guys have got to come up with the truth. This is just -- this hurts the Saudis to lie this stupidly.

WALLACE: Secretary of State Pompeo met with the Saudi crown prince this week and took some criticism for appearing overly friendly in such a serious situation. Here's what Pompeo said when he returned to Washington.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: I think it's also important for us all to remember, too, we have a long, since 1932, a long strategic relationship with or the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Congresswoman Harman, I want to address exactly the dilemma, the conundrum that Speaker Gingrich was talking about. On the one hand, what apparently happened to Khashoggi is unacceptable. On the other hand, we do have strategic interests with Saudi Arabia, how do we balance all that?

FORMER REP. JANE HARMAN, D-CALIF.: Well, our foreign policy is based on values and interest. Values that we have are rule of law and freedom of the press. Interests that we have are having Saudi Arabia as an ally against Iran's maligned behavior among other things, and maybe helping Jared Kushner with his two-state solution, which doesn't seem to be going very far between Israel and Palestine.

But at any rate, murder -- I totally agree with Newt -- murder and this reckless war in Yemen are not either our values or our interest, and I think that in addition to sanctions, it would be good to talk to the king about perhaps moving Mohammed bin Salman, MBS, sideways for a while and putting an adult in charge of Saudi Arabia, such as Mohammed bin Nayef, the intelligence chief who was widely admired but now is under house arrest because of MBS's decision, or even Adel al-Jubeir, the foreign minister who used to be the ambassador here who is, again, highly regarded and very --

WALLACE: You think -- I mean, you have a much better sense of this than I do. Do you think if the president were to go to the king and say that, or to the ruling family and say that, that we have a vote -- we can apply pressure?

HARMAN: I don't think we have a vote but, yes, I think we can apply pressure and it is also true, obviously that there are major financial transactions pending, not just the aerospace firms but also with high-tech firms. I think the modernization program, and I actually think Khashoggi agreed with this, was going in the right direction. It was the excesses that are derailing it and I think Saudi Arabia wants and need a modern future, so they better do a course correction here.

WALLACE: Marc, let's talk about the realities in Congress, that used to be your job until very recently as the legislative affairs director for President Trump. As we were discussing with Rand Paul, he came within four votes last year of blocking an arms sale to the Saudis. What you think of the prospects for any future arms sales in the foreseeable future, and how tough do you think Congress -- because a lot of Republicans are talking tough on this too -- how tough do you think they're prepared to get with the Saudis?

MARC SHORT, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS DIRECTOR: I think the prospects of any future sales are quite dim, but I actually think the prospects are greater than perhaps Senator Paul was indicating that Congress should actually take proactive steps to unwind the most recent arms deal. I think very little that transactions gone through, I think you could see move by Congress to move forward, particularly if there's a vacuum from the administration, responding quickly and responding authoritatively. So, I think that actually the risk there is actually much more significant than Senator Paul was saying as to what Congress could do in the near term.

WALLACE: And what about other sanctions?

SHORT: I think that's -- they go together, Chris, because if the administration steps forward to take sanctions, that will lower the pressure on Congress to act. But if the administration doesn't do that, then I think you'll see a vacuum in which Congress steps forward, and looks to move more quickly, perhaps even a soon as the lame duck session.

WALLACE: Chuck, this is personal for you because Jamal Khashoggi was a colleague of yours at The Washington Post. Your reaction to the Saudi account and to President Trump's seeming acceptance of that Saudi account so far?

CHARLES LANE, THE WASHINGTON POST: Well, let's take the Saudis' accounts first. It reminds me of that famous phrase from Watergate, the modified limited hangout. This is what you do when you've been caught, your cover has been blown, and there's really no denying it anymore, so you let a little bit of the truth out where you try to reshape a more plausible cover story.

Remember, they have been saying that Jamal Khashoggi left that consulate alive. That had been there previous view of the matter. So, the story is, as the speaker and everyone else here has said, is not a credible story. It's their desperate attempt to preserve the crown prince and his position and by the way, they are even willing to sacrifice, apparently, some fairly senior officials, at least to the extent of scape-goating them and firing them.

But the trouble with President Trump's reaction to this so far from my point of view has been that it's taken him a long time to declare that this was evil and stupid. His first reaction was something like, well, you know, it's not an American citizen and it's not on our soil. And that was troublingly consistent with some things he said in the campaign about how, you know, we Americans, we kill a lot of people and so on. He's got a lot -- he's dug himself a deep hole, I'm afraid, on that point and I don't think he's all the way out of it yet.

WALLACE: Marc?

SHORT: I agree with what the congresswoman was saying before, that there's a lot they're trying to balance and I think the president is trying to give them a little bit of space. Today, the president came out on "The Washington Post" and said he does not believe the account as to what they've said was a result of the fistfight. He has acknowledged the incredulity of that.

But I do think as well that there's a lot that they're trying to balance here. The Iran funding Hamas and Hezbollah is killing Westerners continually throughout the Middle East, and Saudi Arabia is our ally. That is a challenge that we need to navigate. The administration needs to step forward, they need to be more aggressive or else Congress will act. I do believe that.

WALLACE: I want to bring the congresswoman in here on that, because I thought what Senator Paul said was very interesting, which is that we overestimate the importance of Saudi Arabia and underestimate our leverage over them. That if they -- if we buy oil from them, they sell oil to us and as he pointed out, their air force is completely based on American planes. If we held up equipment and spare parts they'd be grounded in a month.

HARMAN: Well, the feckless war in Yemen, which is the largest humanitarian catastrophe on the planet right now, shows their incapacity as the fighting force despite our weapons, which they have paid us for. So, I do think we have leverage.

I wanted to say, though, that Khashoggi, however his name is pronounced, is about to be a journalist scholar at the Wilson Center. He's highly regarded in town and the irony of all of this is that he was writing about the modernization program in a positive way. He was critical of MBS's extreme behavior but positive about the program, and they need people like him to applaud the direction they're going in and they need the United States.

WALLACE: Final thought?

GINGRICH: Look, the Russians tried to kill two people in Great Britain. We join with Britain, we put in selective sanctions that were pretty severe. I think establishing the principle, the people can't go around the world killing people is a good thing. The president is going to have to find a way to have a big enough hammer that the selective and real that people can relax and say, we are getting the right signal through to them, or Congress will react with an even bigger hammer in a way that could really damage the relationship.

WALLACE: All right. Panel, thank you all. We'll see you a little bit later in the program.

Up next, we're going to take a look at one of the closest Senate races in the country, the battle for the open seat in Arizona. We'll talk with Republican candidate and congresswoman, Martha McSally, about key issues in the contest, including that migrant caravan headed for the U.S.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WALLACE: Coming up, a heated Arizona race may determine which party controls the Senate.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MARTHA MCSALLY, R-ARIZ., U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: While we were in harm's way, she was protesting our troops in a pink tutu.

REP. KYRSTEN SINEMA, D-ARIZ., U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: She's engaging in ridiculous attacks and smearing my campaign.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: We'll sit down with Republican candidate and congresswoman, Martha McSally, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WALLACE: On election night just 16 days from now, the battle for control of the Senate may come down to the tight race for an open seat in Arizona.

The RealClearPolitics average of recent polls shows basically a dead heat. Republican Martha McSally leads Democrat Kyrsten Sinema 46 percent to 45.3. The winner will be Arizona's first female senator.

We invited both candidates to join us today coming. Kyrsten Sinema declined.

But Congresswoman McSally joins us now from Tucson.

And, Congresswoman, welcome back to "Fox News Sunday."

MCSALLY: Good morning, Chris. Thanks for having me on.

WALLACE: You and Sinema had a debate this week.

And the key moment came near the very end of the debate, when you noted that, back in 2003, your opponent was on a radio talk show. And the host hypothetically talked about joining the Taliban, and Kyrsten Sinema said -- quote -- "I don't care if you want to do that."

And that led to this exchange in the debate:

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCSALLY: Kyrsten, I want to ask right now whether you're going to apologize to the veterans and me for saying it's OK to commit treason.

(CROSSTALK)

SINEMA: Well, Martha has chosen to run a campaign like the one you're seeing right now, where she is engaging in ridiculous attacks and smearing my campaign.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Congresswoman, do you really think that Kyrsten Sinema was approving treason?

MCSALLY: Well, it's her words, Chris.

It's totally out of step with American values, when she clearly says in this radio interview she has no problem with an American going to join the Taliban.

And, look, Chris, this is personal for those of us who serve and actually fought against the Taliban. I was a squadron commander over there with my A-10 squadron. We were getting shot at by the Taliban. The Taliban was killing Americans.

And I'll tell you, the worst days we had at Bagram Air Base when I was a commander was when an American gave their last breath fighting for our freedoms and fighting over there and was killed by someone from the Taliban or their affiliates.

We would stop everything we're doing. We would line up along the ramp as their flag-draped casket came by, and we would each then salute in silence. You couldn't hear a pin drop as we said goodbye to this American hero who was killed by the Taliban.

So, this is -- this is out of step with American values. This is personal to those of us who went over there to fight. And this just shows that she's disqualified to being a United States senator.

WALLACE: I fully understand your -- your feelings and emotions about what you went through. And, of course, we honor your service, as the first female U.S. fighter pilot to ever see combat, which is historic.

But to get back to the campaign, Sinema says, look, I had two brothers in the military. One of them is still serving in the military. She said this talk show host was going off presenting all kinds of hypothetical ideas, and I was just trying to shut him down and get back to the fact, she says, that she opposed the Iraq War, which was just about to start in 2003.

MCSALLY: Well, Chris, she continues to make excuses.

She has yet to make an apology. But, look, this is a pattern from my opponent. Right after 9/11, a moment when the country was unified in our healing and our mourning, but also unified that we have got to go back -- go after the Taliban, who harbored Al Qaeda, who killed 3,000 Americans, Kyrsten Sinema was protesting right after 9/11 any military action against terrorists.

She was protesting later in a pink tutu. She was leading protests, multiple protests, inviting anarchists, socialists, others, handing out flyers at her protest depicting American soldiers as skeletons and saying we are the ones conducting terror in the Middle East.

So, this is just a pattern of my opponent over many years, where she has been a radical left activist, a Green Party activist.

WALLACE: Right.

MCSALLY: Very much against our military. And these are the facts they need to come out in his campaign.

Compared to me, who served 26 years in the military, 325 combat hours, fighting for our freedom.

WALLACE: On the other hand, she's taking some attacks -- making some attacks against you.

And I want to talk about one of them. According to the latest FOX News poll, the top issue for voters around the country is health care. And Sinema is hitting you on that.

She notes that you voted for repeal and replace last year, which, under its terms, would have allowed states to let -- it would have permitted states to allow insurance to be sold for people with preexisting conditions with higher premiums.

Here is what Sinema said about you in the debate.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SINEMA: The reality is that Arizonans are worried about losing access to this critical coverage. And Martha voted to take that protection away.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Do you acknowledge that protection for people with preexisting conditions was significantly weaker under repeal and replace than it was under Obamacare?

MCSALLY: Chris, I am passionate about protecting people with preexisting conditions and forcing insurance companies to provide them health insurance. I voted to make sure that they had that -- that coverage.

This is a classic, out of the left, all over the country, the lies that they are perpetuating in order to play upon fear. The reality is that Obamacare right now is not covering people with preexisting conditions.

We can't go back to what we were in the past. We all know nobody who had diabetes or is a cancer survivor or asthma who couldn't get access to health insurance. But their intentions don't equal policy outcomes.

I met an entrepreneur last week who decided to start a small business with a preexisting condition. She's uncovered right now under Obamacare. So, we are trying to move towards a system that provides more options, more choice for people, that lowers the cost...

WALLACE: But, Congresswoman, I...

MCSALLY: ... that allows states to manage it. And then I personally...

WALLACE: Congresswoman, let me just jump in here.

MCSALLY: Right.

WALLACE: ... because under repeal and replace, the bill that you voted for, if someone had a lapse in coverage of 63 days -- and, of course, a lot of these are cases of preexisting condition are people who don't have insurance and then want to buy it -- if you had a lapse in coverage for 63 days, states could force those people, instead of buying it from an insurance company, to buy it from a risk pool.

And that meant that the premiums would be higher. That's exactly the kind of thing that Obamacare tried to prevent.

MCSALLY: Yes, Chris, what we were trying to do, again, is not have the federal government one-size-fits-all, top-down approach, while protecting people with preexisting conditions, allowing states flexibility.

And then I advocated we have a $100 billion stability fund there. I advocated for another $15 billion specifically for maternity and mental health, and another $8 billion specifically to make sure that states are covering and supporting people with preexisting conditions.

Again, this is a complex issue. We're not going to solve it all here this morning. But we were trying to move away from the failures of Obamacare towards something that actually provided more options at lower cost, while protecting people with preexisting conditions.

Again, this is just a lie we're seeing all over the country, playing on people's fears. But I want the voters to know I'm committed to protecting people with preexisting conditions. I'm fighting for it. I fought for it. And I voted for it. And I will keep doing that in the Senate.

WALLACE: There was a rally yesterday that the president attended and spoke very much on your behalf.

At that rally, he also talked about that caravan of thousands of migrants headed from Honduras to the U.S. Here he is.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: You think they're all wonderful people? You got some bad people in those groups. You got some tough people in those groups.

And I will tell you what. This country doesn't want them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Congresswoman, do you support the president's policy on migration, even his threat to send troops to the southern border to shut it down to prevent that caravan from coming in?

MCSALLY: Well, I share the president's frustration that the Democrats are obstructing on this issue.

I represent a Southern border district, 80 miles of the border. I chair the Border Security Subcommittee. And we have got fifth-generation ranchers down there on the border right now dealing with a cartel activity, continuing to traffic opioids and other drugs and human trafficking into our communities. This is a public safety and a national security issue.

We also have -- like, in the town of Yuma, the city of Yuma, we have got a number of people that are being trafficked by the cartels, taking advantage of the loopholes in our laws, so that they know they're going to be released right into the interior of the United States, never to show up for their court date.

This is not going to work. This doesn't -- this isn't working. And my bill that I worked really closely with the White House on closed these loopholes. Only Congress can do it...

WALLACE: But...

MCSALLY: ... so that this administration can enforce the law and make sure that we secure our borders.

WALLACE: But, Congresswoman...

MCSALLY: This is a unifying issue across Arizona.

Yes.

WALLACE: But, Congresswoman, before you supported what was known as the Goodlatte bill, you supported another bill in 2015.

Your opponent says that you're on all sides of this issue, because in the bill you supported in 2015, you opposed defunding DACA, and, in fact, you supported a path to citizenship for the dreamers.

So, what about the argument Kyrsten Sinema makes that you have been inconsistent on this issue?

MCSALLY: Chris, you understand the legislative process.

I have been consistently leading on this issue as the Border Security Subcommittee chair. This is a difficult issue. But when the president kicked DACA to Congress, appropriately, we worked together, Goodlatte McCaul, Labrador, and myself, to lead, to identify a solution that secures the border, closes these legal loopholes, moves us more towards a merit- based system, and does something on DACA.

This is what we worked on to bring to the floor. Unfortunately, we couldn't get it passed. But we're going to keep working on it, because the border still needs to be secured. These loopholes still need to be closed.

And I'm going to continue to lead on this when I'm in the Senate. Even though Washington, D.C., moves on the other topics, we still have to address this issue.

WALLACE: Congresswoman McSally, thank you. Thanks for joining us.

And, of course, we will be following the returns from Arizona on election night.

MCSALLY: Thanks a lot, Chris.

WALLACE: Up next, we will bring back our Sunday group to discuss the midterms, now just two weeks away, and the politics of that migration caravan from Honduras.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: This will be an election of Kavanaugh, the caravan, law and order, and common sense. That's what it's going to be.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: President Trump now into his final midterm election blitz, trying to fire up his base over what he thinks are the hot-button issues.

And we're back now with the panel.

All right, Speaker Gingrich, what do you think of the president's strategy in these final weeks before the election, the issues that he's hitting, and the effort he's made -- you didn't see it there, but you know he's been on the campaign trail saying, when you go to the voting booth, pretend, act as if I'm on the ballot?

GINGRICH: Well, normally, I would say that that's not a good idea.

But I think,in this environment, with this president, it's the only out and is the only way he can campaign. He's -- he's that big a force. He's that big a presence.

And the truth is, he is mobilizing his base and he's giving them -- I mean, when they say, look, this is jobs vs. mobs, there are 40 million people who pick that up and at coffee the next morning use it.

When he says this is about Kavanaugh the campaign -- and the caravans, there are 40 million people who pick it up the next day and use it.

WALLACE: So, what you're saying is, it's going to be -- this election is going to be nationalized because of Donald Trump, whether he says it or not?

GINGRICH: Yes.

If he had tried to hide, the truth is, from election night 2016 on, this country has been in a national fight over who's going to run the country. And I think that the Kavanaugh event was really historically important, because it both galvanized the right, but also it reminded everyone this is a team sport.

You -- Tester is not a moderate. Tester is going to vote for Schumer. And you go right down the list of every red state Democrat, and they can get up and say, I'm really different. And the only question I have to ask them is, you going to vote for Schumer?

WALLACE: A new FOX poll this week asked voters, what are their top issues? What are they most concerned about?

Here are the top results, health care at 58 percent, then the economy with 54, President Trump with 51, and then immigration and Supreme Court nomination is tied at 46 percent. These are the top issues, extremely important to your vote.

Chuck, looking at that issue set, which party do you think benefits both?

LANE: I'm going to cop out and say both. But I have an explanation.

It'd be very interesting if you differentiated within each issue how the parties view them. So, Republican voters would put immigration way at the top. Democratic voters would put health care way at the top.

So, you see a lot of messaging all over the country on this issue of preexisting conditions. You had that discussion with Martha McSally. Democrats well understand -- 80 percent even of Republicans favor protection of preexisting conditions.

They got some elements to work with on that. So they're pushing that very hard to get out their base.

This caravan, I almost think that Trump's campaign paid for the caravan, because...

WALLACE: Oh, wait, wait, wait. Let's not say that, because they suggested the Democrats did and...

LANE: I'm just kidding, but it's been a windfall...

WALLACE: There's no kidding two weeks before the election.

LANE: Sorry.

It's a windfall for him. He's now incorporated into his campaign.

Bottom line here is that both parties have settled on the strategy of base mobilization. And they're using these issues that are hottest with their bases to achieve that purpose.

WALLACE: All right, well, let's talk about the caravan, which is headed from Honduras and Guatemala, now a lot of them, thousands of them, on a bridge literally on a river between Guatemala and Mexico.

And President Trump is trying to use that issue to fire up the base.

But, according to the latest FOX poll, immigration not a clear winner for Republicans. When asked -- slightly different issue -- what should happen to illegal immigrants now working in the U.S., 22 percent say deport as many as possible; 70 percent say set up a system for them to become legal.

So, Marc, writ large, how does the immigration issue play in this in this campaign?

SHORT: I think it's a huge winning issue for the president. I think Americans want border security.

And even to that last question, the president offered a pathway to citizenship for the DACA participants. All he's asking for is Democrats to come to the table on border security issues.

And so I think this is a huge winning issue for the president.

WALLACE: What about family separation, which was an explosion when it happened?

SHORT: Sure, it's an explosion, but it's also policy that has plagued Democratic administrations as well, because Congress has not passed laws that enabled an administration to actually have the tools to handle that situation.

Your hands are tied, because either you separate families and you allow -- and -- or you allow them to go free into the United States, because the law says, within 21 days, the families have to be adjudicated. And the courts are not able to adjudicate them that quickly.

WALLACE: Congresswoman?

HARMAN: Yes.

Well, first, Abigail Adams said, remember the women. On your list of priorities, women are out there in force. And women are on the ballot in almost 50 percent of the House races and 17 percent of the Senate races.

And, in Arizona, two women are -- are competing for senator. And I think that this Kavanaugh thing may fuel the base, but it also will generate huge numbers of women.

I was elected in 1992, the year of the woman. Republican women voted for me in a lean-Republican district, became Republicans for Harman. And that's how I survived in 1994, when Newt became the speaker. And now we're friends. Go figure.

(LAUGHTER)

HARMAN: But my point is that...

WALLACE: Well, I don't know. You said that. He hasn't said that yet.

(LAUGHTER)

GINGRICH: ... definitely a friend.

HARMAN: On the caravan, Mike Pence and John Kelly, when he was the Department of Homeland Security secretary, had a better idea.

They had a summit in Miami in June of 2017. And the point of it was to provide help to governments in Central America to combat corruption and to provide for business investment. Mexico was part of that conference.

And if they had done that...

WALLACE: OK.

But I'm asking you, just politics of this caravan coming north, and the president saying, I'm going to send U.S. troops to the border and shut down the border?

HARMAN: Well, I think it's red meat to his base.

But I think thoughtful people much prefer George W. Bush's approach to comprehensive immigration reform that I supported.

WALLACE: But it failed.

HARMAN: Yes, I know it failed. And we -- that's what we need to get back to, is supporting failing governments, so that they can keep their people there, stopping the push factor, and then also doing comprehensive immigration.

WALLACE: But you -- would you agree that this caravan going up -- and let's say right now neither the Republicans or the Democrats had anything to do with it -- is a political plus for President Trump trying to mobilize his base?

HARMAN: I think it mobilizes his base. I think it's a human tragedy, and a whole bunch of other people will be repelled by the fact that he thinks that it's good politics and doesn't worry about the human rights issues involved.

WALLACE: Speaker?

GINGRICH: Well, look, I don't think there are human rights issues when 4,000 or 5,000 people decided to attack the United States. And that's what they're doing.

I mean, these are people, look, they're carrying -- they're carrying flags from Honduras.

(CROSSTALK)

HARMAN: ... murdered in their own country.

GINGRICH: Oh, baloney.

These are people who want a better future. And they have...

HARMAN: Right.

GINGRICH: Look, if a mob came down the street and occupied your home because you have a nicer home than they do, you wouldn't say, oh, gosh, I really feel sorry for you. You would be pretty angry that they were occupying your home.

I think the average person, look, they're -- Gallup did a survey -- 179 million people in Latin America would like to come to United States.

Now, at what point do we draw a number? And when you draw the number -- I don't care how big it is -- Nancy Pelosi can say, oh, I will take 12 million. Fine.

Is she then going to control the border? Is she then going to confront people?

HARMAN: I think we have to control our border. I have never been against that.

(CROSSTALK)

HARMAN: But I think using this issue -- I thought that was the question -- as an election campaign theme, I think, is very cynical.

SHORT: We wish there were more Democrats like you in Congress today, because there's not been that partnership to actually secure the border now.

HARMAN: Well, I was in. I was in for years.

GINGRICH: I wish there were any Democrats like you in the Congress today.

WALLACE: What does that mean?

(LAUGHTER)

GINGRICH: I mean, they're all to the left. They're virtually all to the left of where she was.

WALLACE: Do you agree with that?

I mean, the party certainly has moved dramatically to the left.

HARMAN: I think both parties have lost the center, and both parties are governed more from the further out. I'm not going to call them extreme.

And it's a huge loss for good governance. I just remember, in 1994, Penny- Kasich. I don't know if you're involved in. John Kasich and Tim Penny, then a Democrat, now an independent, led an effort to provide for responsible budget cuts.

We got up to $100 billion, including defense cuts. And I represented a defense-dependent district, and it almost passed. And then we all banded together with you and President Clinton to pass a balanced budget amendment in 1997.

That's how Congress should work.

WALLACE: Who knew we were going to talk about Penny-Kasich today? Wow.

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

WALLACE: Go ahead, Chuck.

LANE: Well, I was just going to jump in.

I mean, one of the ironies of this Arizona raised that we were focusing on for Senate is that you two member -- current members of Congress who are actually fairly middle of the road in the way they have conducted themselves in Congress, actually worked together on health care, who are now at each other's throats in the most vituperative terms possible, Martha McSally calling Kyrsten Sinema a traitor in a pink tutu or something.

And that just shows that even when people kind of have a moderate record, they find themselves forced by the political circumstances to repudiate that, and seem even more extreme than they actually have governed.

WALLACE: All right.

I know you're not going to play ball, but I'm going to ask the other three here quickly, starting with you, Marc, who's going to win the House?

SHORT: I think that Democrats are more likely to hold the House.

But I think, if Nancy Pelosi is speaker, with Maxine Waters and Adam Schiff are chairmen, it's the best thing the world that could happen for the president's reelection in 2020.

WALLACE: Congresswoman?

HARMAN: Democrats by a small margin. And I hope they have a vision for our future.

WALLACE: But you don't know?

HARMAN: I hope it's about a vision for future, not just...

(LAUGHTER)

WALLACE: Oh, OK.

And, Speaker?

GINGRICH: I think the odds are equally good that Kevin McCarthy will be the next speaker, and not Nancy Pelosi.

WALLACE: There you go. All right, thank you.

And I left you...

LANE: I would play ball.

WALLACE: OK, who? Quickly.

LANE: I think the Dems will get probably 223 seats.

WALLACE: OK. Wow.

Thanks, panel. See you next Sunday.

Up next, our Power Player of the Week, celebrity chef Jose Andres, on feeding Florida after Hurricane Michael and tending to people in need around the world.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WALLACE: Winning a Michelin Star is a lifetime achievement for most chefs. But one man who has already done that is more focused now on helping people caught in natural disasters.

Here's our Power Player of the Week.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOSE ANDRES, CELEBRITY CHEF: We're chefs. We feed people. And people are always in need of a hot meal. And that's what we do. WALLACE (voice-over): Jose Andres is a world-famous shaft with more than 30 restaurants across the U.S.

But, this week, he and his team are in the Florida Panhandle cooking tens of thousands of meals for people still digging out from Hurricane Michael.

ANDRES: Unfortunately, could be that the missing people are still somewhere here under the rubble. But we do what we do, which is cooking, feeding, water, intelligence to make sure that everybody at least will have a hot plate of food.

WALLACE: Andres started what he called the World Central Kitchen after the devastating earthquake in Haiti in 2010.

Ever since, when there is a natural disaster, they respond.

ANDRES: We were in the fires of California. We went to Hawaii after the volcano. Right now, we have two teams in Indonesia after the two earthquakes that hit that island.

WALLACE: But his biggest food relief effort was in Puerto Rico last year after Hurricane Maria.

ANDRES: What we did really was, at one point, sending food to more than 900 places a day.

WALLACE (on camera): Do you think that your operation made the difference between life and death for some people there?

ANDRES: The answer is yes, Chris. So, I do believe, like, what my little organization did, and others, I'm sure it saved lives.

WALLACE (voice-over): The numbers are staggering. In the nine months after Maria, Andres and 20,000 volunteers served 3.5 million meals, as many as 150,000 a day.

ANDRES: When we bring hot food one shelter at a time, one neighborhood at a time, what you gather is intelligence.

WALLACE: And that is the subject of his new book, "We Fed An Island," the lessons he's learned about how to provide food relief.

He says chefs are good at managing chaos.

ANDRES: The people in the government are great people, but if we give them sometimes a little more room to adapt, we will do a much better job providing relief quicker and faster.

WALLACE: Will introduce you to Jose Andres back in 2004, when he turned his kitchens into laboratories, producing something called molecular gastronomy.

ANDRES: You see, and this is what we are looking.

(CROSSTALK)

WALLACE (on camera): Oh, my God.

ANDRES: My guys are going to be watching these, and they're going to tell me.

How we doing? Holding there?

WALLACE (voice-over): But now Andres spends much of his time away from his family and food empire on the front lines of natural disasters.

ANDRES: Thank you, guys.

WALLACE: Which raises the question, what gives him more satisfaction, creating some masterpiece or cooking paella for hundreds?

ANDRES: As John Steinbeck said in his book "The Grapes of Wrath," he said, "Wherever there is a fight so hungry people may eat, I will be there."

And now I say, we will be there. We the people, we the cooks, we will be there to feed anybody that is hungry.

It will get better.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It will. Yes, thank you so much for your generosity.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WALLACE: If you want to learn more about the World Central Kitchen and how to support it, please visit our Web site, FOXNewsSunday.com.

And that's it for today. Have a great week.

And we will see you next "Fox News Sunday."

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