This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," April 24, 2020. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MIKE HUCKABEE, FOX NEWS HOST: Welcome to this special edition of "Hannity", "COVID-19: The Impact on America". I'm Mike Huckabee, in tonight for Sean.
Now, for the hour, we're going to show you how this global pandemic is not just a deadly virus, but also a very serious threat to our very way of life.
Earlier tonight, President Trump held another task force briefing at the White House. Joining us with all of the latest details, chief breaking news correspondent Trace Gallagher -- Trace.
TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CHIEF BREAKING NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Governor, good evening.
Let's begin with breaking news out of the coronavirus task force where FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn said the first at home COVID-19 test unveiled this week and actually be mailed from doctors to patients, who can then self-swab and mail it back. Expert table boost access to testing as well as test numbers.
The president also signed legislation today replenishing the small business lending program with $484 billion, $310 billion of that goes towards the Paycheck Protection Program, which quickly ran out of money a few weeks back.
President Trump and Vice President Pence also spoke with the nation's governors today. Topic one was testing, with the vice president saying that a month ago, 80,000 Americans had been tested. Today, it's 5 million.
Governors are also reporting that hospitals and ICUs nationwide are seeing very positive trends.
And finally, one day after the president suggested that light and disinfectants might have the potential to treat COVID-19, the White House says the media took the president's comments out of context, and the president said it was sarcasm. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I was asking a sarcastic and a very sarcastic question to the reporters in the room about disinfectant on the inside, but it does kill it and it would kill it on the hands and that would make things much better. That was done in the form of a sarcastic question to the reporters.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GALLAGHER: The Department of Homeland Security did say sunshine and household bleach are extremely effective at killing the virus on surfaces - - Governor.
HUCKABEE: Trace, thank you very much.
Well, tonight, as President Trump works around the clock to coordinate this country's pandemic response, some Democrats are attempting to remake America in accordance with their own far left agenda. Speaker Nancy Pelosi has her eyes on a massive new spending bill. It's a bill that would bail out liberal states on the brink of bankruptcy.
Now, these are states that have squandered billions of dollars on entitlements, generous pension plans for public employee union members, green energy programs and much more. Now, Nancy Pelosi wants to give them more of your money.
And while Pelosi tries to get all of her friends to get a giant payday, other Democrats are using the virus as a political weapon. House lawmakers led by Congressman James Clyburn have already assembled a panel to investigate the president's handling of the virus.
Now, keep in mind, it's the same James Clyburn who told colleagues that the coronavirus was a tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision.
Meanwhile, one of Clyburn's colleagues accused Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of wanting Americans to drop dead. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MAX ROSE (D-NY): Our front-line workers right now cannot afford for us to stand by for politics. Leader McConnell said to our cities and states, to our cops, and firemen and teachers, he told them to drop dead. Well, why don't we put politics aside, rise up and tell him that we put the country first?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HUCKABEE: Joining us now, Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan and Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert.
Congressman Jordan, let me start with you. This is pretty bold. The Democrats are essentially saying, that Republicans want to kill people.
I'm going to ask you point-blank: you're a Republican, do you want to kill people?
REP. JIM JORDAN (R-OH): Of course not.
Democrats never miss an opportunity to try to advance their far left agenda and attack the president and attack Republicans. I mean, think about what they have proposed during this pandemic, let -- release illegal immigrants, pay states to let criminals out of jail, deem abortion clinics as essential businesses and stop Americans from purchasing a firearm and stop Americans from going to church. That's what they push during this crisis.
And they have attacked the president so much so they have now created a special select committee. It wasn't good enough for the Crossfire Hurricane, wasn't good enough with the Mueller investigation, couldn't get the president with this crazy impeachment over the Ukrainian phone call, so now they're going to create a select committee to go after the president, even though, as Mr. Gohmert knows, we already have eight different entities doing oversight over the coronavirus response.
HUCKABEE: Congressman Gohmert, let's go into that. There are eight federal inquiries right now about this response. Couldn't we use a ninth one? I mean, what's wrong? Is that a problem to have another one?
GOV. LOUIE GOHMERT (R-TX): Governor, yes, I love your question.
Yes, that is exactly Speaker Pelosi's solution. If you got eight committees in the hands of Democrats who are simply not doing their job, the solution is create another committee in the hands of Democrats. So, that's what -- that's what they did.
And if you saw the speaker's comments, she said we are going to do this in a bipartisan way, and probably has a 100 percent partisan vote to create a committee to try to impeach President Trump. That's what it's all boiling down to.
But -- and as far as our friend, Max, when he first said what he did about disrespecting cops, telling cops drop dead, I had to ask, is he talking about Mayor de Blasio? But apparently, he was talking about Mitch McConnell.
And saying a state might file for bankruptcy is not the same as telling a state's employees to drop dead, for heaven's sake -- cops, firefighters, these first responders, they're all essential and any bankruptcy court would rule that way. They are essential. They've got to keep being paid.
But it's not lawful to file bankruptcy for a state at this time and a lot of it, Jim, and I have talked about it -- you know, we have been concerned all along that they would follow Rahm Emanuel's advice, not let a good crisis go to waste, and you've got Democrat cities, controlled cities and states that are basically bankrupt, and they might try to use this crisis to bail them out, and that's totally inappropriate. We're not standing for that.
JORDAN: Governor, if I could --
HUCKABEE: Yes, go ahead.
JORDAN: These first eight committees, they work for the taxpayers. And the ninth committee is going to work for Joe Biden. Who did they put in charge of that committee? Jim Clyburn, the guy who is most responsible for Joe Biden being the Democrats' nominee for president.
Remember, Jim Clyburn, good man, but he is the one who endorsed Joe Biden in the South Carolina primary. He is the reason Joe Biden won that primary and then went on to the nomination.
So, this committee is a bipartisan politics. It's about helping Joe Biden and going after the president of the United States, just like these Democrats have done since even before the president was elected when they started the Trump-Russia investigation in the summer of 2016.
HUCKABEE: But I think it's an important point you made that it was Jim Clyburn who kind of resuscitated Joe Biden's career. Now, Joe's down in the basement, we haven't seen a whole lot of him. But when Al Gore did his endorsement, it was one of the most awkward things I've ever seen.
Congressman Gohmert, you might speak to the fact that when Al Gore was there and Joe was giving out some chopped word salad, you can almost see on Al Gore's face, what have I done?
GOHMERT: It's very hard for me to read a blank face so I can't really comment on what it looked like Al Gore was thinking from my perspective. But they all looked somewhat uncomfortable when they do that endorsement, and to me, that included former President Obama. He could've done a whole lot sooner. I don't know why it took so long.
HUCKABEE: Congressman Jordan, we've only got about 30 seconds, so I've got to get it in quickly. But there are some pretty draconian things that have been done in states during the stay-at-home order.
Do you think those things are going to be looked at, investigated by the Department of Justice as to whether they were over-the-top or just flat too much?
JORDAN: Yes, Bill Barr has indicated as much and, in fact, he gave a memo and a briefing or a memo a couple of weeks ago where he said, if you can -- for goodness sakes, go to the grocery store and maintain six feet of social distance, you can certainly go to church and your car and maintain the appropriate distance. And this idea that governments are stopping people from attending church, particularly on Easter Sunday, is just flat out wrong.
So, Bill Barr is defending liberty. He's also said these protesters, he's made some statements that I think are supported of these people who are tired of what's taking place and simply want to get back to work and want to get our country back on the right track.
HUCKABEE: Congressman Jordan and Congressman Louie Gohmert, thank you both. Delighted to have you here.
HUCKABEE: Now, as we inched closer and closer to the presidential election, the rhetoric from the left is only going to get worse. Some of you are thinking, how?
Speaking of which, someone might want to check up on Joe Biden during this nationwide lockdown. He is saying some very strange things. During a recent online fund-raiser, Biden pushed a bizarre conspiracy theory. It was that President Trump may try to delay the 2020 election.
Biden reportedly told voters, and I quote: Mark my words, I think he's going to try to kick back the election somehow. Come up with some rationale why it can't be held. It's the only way Trump thinks he can possibly win.
Joining us now with reaction, FOX News contributors Tammy Bruce and Dan Bongino.
Tammy, are we going to have an election for president in November this year?
TAMMY BRUCE, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: We are. The president has, of course, assured us of that. Maybe that was wishful thinking on Joe Biden's part. Remember, this is the party that was talking about having a virtual convention, not having people gather there at all. They are the ones who seem to be concerned about people coming together.
Remember, they are going to have a pretty big platform fight about their policies and they don't want the American people to see that. But this is during a fund-raising call, as you note, sir, and I think there's a point here, because Biden has had a horrible time fund-raising, and will continue to have a difficult time compared to the historic fund-raising the president has been enjoying.
So, that's a sign of lack of enthusiasm. So, once again this is an attempt to frighten people. This is all the Democrats have, is an effort to frighten their own people into thinking that this is going to be some kind of a coup.
Whereas in fact, the president I think is looking forward to this, clearly, wants to have an election. It is something, it is a restatement about the reformation, and clearly the approval of the way he's been handling this extraordinary situation that none of us could of predicted speaks to his leadership.
So they are going to want to, as they've been doing for several years, besmirched his character, lied to people about the nature of what he means and what he's doing, and they're going to end, you're right. This year, it's going to be awful, but the fact is that's all they have. Now they are also just lying to their own people in an attempt to create more confusion and more fear.
HUCKABEE: Dan Bongino, the ever timid and oh so soft-spoken, let me ask you, do you think it's the Democrats who think this election is going to be booted out in the future? Or would they rather it may be postponed for their benefit, not for the president's?
DAN BONGINO, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, first, Governor, let me just I am actually stunned that Biden remembers there is an election in November. I mean, he hasn't exactly -- some of his appearance is been downright disturbing. I mean, it's not that in these Joe Biden interviews that he forgets the question. He appears to forget he's actually doing an interview at times. I mean, you know, and listen, I know it's an election and obviously we should question Joe Biden's fitness for office, it is appropriate.
But really sometimes, Governor, I mean it, it's like sad to watch. He seems like he is grossly under prepared for this.
Now, this is a bizarre conspiracy theory. Tammy's absolutely right, you are right as well. That Trump is somehow going to move -- it's just so dumb. I can't believe we have to cover this but we do because it was brought up by a major party candidate.
But what's weird, the Democrats have their conspiracy theory boxes with the president. One conspiracy theory box is President Trump is not fit, he doesn't do anything, he just sits there all day and because he missed the ball and all of those he is not suited for the job.
The other conspiracy theory box is president's beloved is too much, he's the world's ultimate tyrant, he has this massive power he's abusing and he's all over everything all the time. This is from the Trump is a tyrant box, that he has the power, despite Trump clearly saying this is ridiculous, that he plans on delaying the election.
This is from the tyrant box where they just pulled in a reasonably grabbed one. But this is really just dumb. I mean, let's be honest, this is stupid.
HUCKABEE: There something breaking tonight, got to get a reaction quickly from both of you. Some video dug up, you know, the Internet is forever but so is videotape, and from 1993 on "The Larry King Show" came this little revelation about Joe Biden.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY KING, TV HOST: San Luis Obispo, California, hello.
CALLER: Yes, hello. I'm wondering what a staffer would do besides go to the press in Washington. My daughter has just left there after working for a prominent senator and could not get through with her problems at all, and the only thing she could've done was go to the press and she chose not to do it out of respect for him.
KING: So she had a story to tell but out of respect for the person she worked for, she didn't tell it.
CALLER: That's true.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HUCKABEE: But we know who it was, it was Joe Biden.
Tammy Bruce, pretty much a bombshell. "The Intercept" picked it up, it is now breaking news on foxnews.com. What will the Democrats be able to do in the age of #metoo?
BRUCE: Well, what they tend to do is just ignore it and the media then supports them in that ignoring. During the Kavanaugh hearings, I noted that women should be taken seriously and enjoy due process as we look into the nature of some of these allegations that phone call is important, because part of what Ms. Reade said, she told her mother, that was her mother, she told her brother and her friend.
And her mother, she said, had called "The Larry King Show" at the time she was aghast that this had happened, and somehow that now has been found once "The Intercept" put up that this was out there and it would be good to find it.
So this confirms the nature of the series of what she has said she did and this is now -- look, what we've known from the start is that, and what I've written about is that sexism, homophobia, and racism live on the left. They are using women, they ruined the dynamic about taking women seriously in the Kavanaugh hearings because they said there needs to be no due process, that men are guilty until proven innocent, and in this case, they simply do nothing at all and they've been ignoring it.
So, they will continue to ignore it but this is a lesson for the American people. It reinforces the fact that the people who've said they are the champions for women and others who are disenfranchised have been lying for generations, and it's time to make a change when it comes to how we live our lives and who our leadership is.
HUCKABEE: Well, it's going to be interesting to see how this all plays out, and if they call for him to step down as they were calling for Brett Kavanaugh.
Thank you both.
Well, coming up, tensions rise all over the country's many state and local governments are accused of massive overreach. Trey Gowdy is going to be joining us after the break so stay with us as this special edition of "Hannity" continues.
HUCKABEE: Welcome back to this special edition of "Hannity."
As state and local governments attempt to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, someone now being accused of trampling the constitutional rights of American citizens. For example, in Houston a new mandate would find residence 1,000 bucks just for not wearing a mask in public. Houston's police union president is calling the measure draconian. Others are protesting the mandate, which is now facing a court challenge.
And in Michigan, state lawmakers are attempting to restrain the governor's emergency powers after she issued widespread bans, at one point even prohibiting members of the same family from visiting each other. My guess is there are some families who would actually approve of that, but not many.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced today that she is going to ease some of the stay-at-home orders by the governor continues to face a wave of criticism.
And in Washington state, that stayed one vote away from releasing some of its most dangerous inmates, all to fight the spread of COVID-19. And a 5-4 decision, the state Supreme Court denied the release of these convicts, including potentially the Green River killer.
Joining us now with more, FOX News contributor Trey Gowdy.
Trey, you were in Congress long enough to not like it very well. You are back home in South Carolina, but what we are seen all across the country is some very heavy handed policies being passed out at the local level by governors and county commissions and mayors.
Is this a threat to the long-term life and liberty of the United States and its people?
TREY GOWDY, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, first of all, governor, it's great to be with you.
Yes, there has to be a rationality. Any time governor asks the citizenry to do something there has to be a rational basis for it, and the greater the freedom you infringe, the more compelling the reason has to be. So, if I'm going to imprison you or fine you for not wearing a mask, why can I hold you down and vaccinate you against the flu this fall? I mean, you don't want the flu and COVID-19, so can I involuntarily vaccinate you? Can I show up at your house and make sure you are doing your burpees and planks and your jumping jacks because obesity and COVID-19 don't go well together? Where does it stop?
And in Houston, Governor, if you can believe this, they are threatening to punish people for not wearing a mask. Meanwhile, on Washington state, they are going to let a serial killer, they are one vote away from letting a serial killer out because of COVID-19.
So, you go to jail for not wearing a mask but if you kill four dozen women because of COVID-19, we might let you out. That is a rational.
HUCKABEE: You are in the Justice Department as a federal prosecutor prior to going to Congress, so you understand the Justice Department. You also understand the power of the government and what they can do. The federal government can also defend civil liberties if they want to, and right now, Attorney General Bill Barr seems to be indicating that he is willing to stand up for citizens to make sure that constitutional rights don't get trampled on.
What do you think is going to happen out of that?
GOWDY: Well, I think we're lucky. We have a real lawyer as the A.G. I mean, he is a real lawyer. So he understands that for government to be able to impinge on a freedom or infringe on a freedom, there has to be a rational basis and sometimes a compelling reason.
So, if I'm going to tell you, governor, that you can't visit your mom, that is a fundamental right that you have. So, the reason that I'm -- the reason I offered to keep you from doing that has to be incredibly compelling. It has to be more than just the governor of Michigan thinks it's a good idea.
If I tell you that you have to wear something in public, there has to be a rational basis for that. So, Barr is smart enough to know that and he'll put the power of the federal government and grants for those states and municipalities who don't want to go along, the power of the purse and the power to go to court.
HUCKABEE: Congressman Gowdy, we've seen some pretty crazy stuff. Like in Michigan, the governor says you can't mow your lawn. I have a hard time understanding how mowing my lawn is going to make me more subject to getting the COVID-19 virus.
GOWDY: Yes, it is the response -- you are the governor of the great state, Arkansas. She's the governor of a great state. It is her job to persuade her citizenry that what she's telling them they cannot do is rationally rooted in public health.
So, good luck convincing anyone that mowing your front lawn is going to make you more susceptible to COVID-19. Look, I get encouraging people not to see those who are vulnerable. But asking me to not see my mom is very different from telling me that I am forbidden on penalty of law from going to see my mom and that's what the protesters and others -- I'm not a protester but I want government to explain to me, if I'm going to infringe on your freedom, it's for a compelling reason.
Americans are sacrificial, Governor. You know that. They are sacrificial.
HUCKABEE: Yes, they are.
GOWDY: But it's not too much to ask, why are you making me do that? And is it rooted in some rationality that is connected with what we're trying to prevent? And if it's not, then we have this thing called civil disobedience and people can engage in it.
HUCKABEE: And I think that's what we're seeing. Congressman, there are a lot of people who are ready to engage in it. They're not unreasonable and I appreciate you saying that because the protesters aren't all just a bunch of crazies. These are people who fundamentally know what their basic rights are.
Congressman Trey Gowdy, so glad to have you here. Thank you for joining us. Delighted to see you.
GOWDY: Yes, sir. Thank you.
HUCKABEE: Coming up, China's rejected request for U.S. officials for access to the Wuhan lab. Gordon Chang is here to react.
And later, what can the U.S. government actually do to hold China accountable? Senator Tom Cotton has a plan and he's going to join us and explain exactly what that plan is.
That and much more as this special edition of "Hannity" continues.
HUCKABEE: Welcome back to this special edition of "Hannity."
Developing tonight, Beijing rejecting Secretary of State Pompeo's request for access to the Wuhan lab that U.S. intel officials believe is linked to the virus outbreak. And not only that, we're also now learning that China's coronavirus cases may have been up to four times what officials reported. That all according to a study out of Hong Kong.
Here to explain more is the author of the book "The Coming Collapse of China," Gordon Chang.
Gordon, I'm delighted you are here. I don't know if anyone that can speak to this more clearly and effectively. Just how much misinformation do you believe we are seeing from China right now on coronavirus?
GORDON CHANG, AUTHOR, "THE COMING COLLAPSE OF CHINA": Well, from the very beginning of the outbreak until now, there has been one piece of misinformation after another. And the reason is for the communist party, the most important thing is controlling the narrative.
We learned that governor on January 26 when the communist party announced its task force for the coronavirus epidemic, there was nine people on the roster. Almost all of them were propaganda types or political hacks. There was only one public health official and I believe that her degree wasn't something other than public health. This clearly was an attempt by the party to control narratives not only in China but around the world.
HUCKABEE: The secretary of state has been told "no can do" when it comes to having some people go over and take a look. What does that tell us?
CHANG: Well, it tells us that China has something to hide. And there have been repeated attempts of American office of cooperation, going back to the first couple days of January. They've all been rebuffed. There were a couple Americans on the world health organization team that went to China for two weeks in the middle of February and they were basically shuttled around to various locations.
They did get to go to Wuhan for two days, February 20th and 21st, but they didn't get to do anything important. It was just sort of meet and greet, and I believe the Americans were not permitted to go to Wuhan, but I need to confirm that. But the point is that China obviously is trying to throw us off the trail and indeed does not want us to understand the outbreak.
HUCKABEE: Gordon, I'm not trying to throw something crazy out there, but is there at least the possibility that the Chinese have developed some type of biological weaponry, and that's what got loose with all of this? Is that even within the realm of possibility? Would that explain some of the cover- up?
CHANG: You know, that's not crazy, Governor. At the Wuhan Institute of Virology which is expected to be the source of the outbreak, they kept more than 1,500 types of coronaviruses, and the question is, what were they doing their with those coronaviruses?
Now most scientists believe that the coronavirus that did get loose was naturally occurring, it was not spliced, but I think Chinese officials, having seen what the disease did to China, crippling society, I think that what they tried to do was to try to make sure that it escaped China to level the playing field.
They did two things, governor. First of all, they tried to convince the world that this disease was not human to human transmissible when they knew that it was. Also, they pressured countries to accept arrivals from China. You put those two things together, and the inevitable conclusion is, no, this wasn't a bio weapon when it started but it turned into one because Chinese leaders saw an opportunity to cripple other societies.
HUCKABEE: Gordon, on a scale of one to 10, one being we don't trust them at all, 10, we absolutely trust everything they say, where should we put our trust level in the Chinese?
CHANG: The trust is absolutely zero trust, because we know that they have been lied from the very beginning of this. We know that there have been under accounts of both cases and deaths, and that undercounting appears to continue today, because what we are seeing are numbers that do not match with what Chinese officials are doing. We see the evidence of a second wave of coronavirus infections in various parts of the country, but the numbers that China is reporting do not match up.
HUCKABEE: Gordon Chang, it is always a pleasure to talk to you. Your insights are invaluable. Thank you, sir. Delighted to see you.
CHANG: Thank you, Governor.
HUCKABEE: Up next, Senator Tom Cotton has come up with some legislation as to how to hold China accountable for the deadly coronavirus pandemic. He's going to be joining us next to explain.
That and a whole lot more as the special edition of "Hannity" continues.
HUCKABEE: Welcome back to this special edition of "Hannity."
The coronavirus outbreak has raised questions about how can the U.S. hold China accountable for their lies, deceit, and flat-out misinformation?
GOP lawmakers, Senator Tom Cotton and Senator Dan Crenshaw, they're laying out one way forward by proposing new legislation allowing Americans to sue China in federal courts. That would be to recover damages from the harm inflicted by China's cover-up.
Meanwhile, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley is launching a petition urging Congress to probe Beijing over the outbreak.
And while the Trump administration and Republicans sound the alarm over China and the World Health Organization's failures, Democrats continue to play defense for America's foes.
Joining me now for reaction, Senator Tom Cotton of my home state of Arkansas.
Senator, good to have you with us. Thank you.
SEN. TOM COTTON (R-AR): Good evening, Governor. Good to be on with you.
HUCKABEE: I want you to outline, you and Dan Crenshaw have put together a package of legislation that would give Americans some very special rights when it comes to holding China accountable. How would it work?
COTTON: Well, Governor, typically, foreign officials are immune from lawsuits in our federal court system. Sovereign immunity is a principle in international system, going back hundreds of years, but it's not absolute. We've waived it, for instance, for the victims of the 9/11 terror attacks.
Congressmen Crenshaw and I think we should waive it for the victims of this terrible virus. Because the Chinese officials lied about the nature of this virus, they intentionally allowed this virus to escape outside their borders, to level the playing field with the rest of the world so they would not suffer all of these harms alone. They ought to pay the consequences.
Now, that's just the first step. There's a lot of other things we can do. I have legislation with Congressman Mike Gallagher to bring back pharmaceutical manufacturing from China to the United States.
We'll get a legislation out this week that will invest a lot more in our military to deter Chinese aggression in the Western Pacific. But one immediate thing we can do is open our courts up to the Americans who have been so grievously harmed by this virus.
HUCKABEE: If that were to happen -- I mean, what's the likelihood of the Chinese would even respond to the lawsuit? And if they just thumb their nose, then what do we do?
COTTON: Yes, well, a lot of -- in a lot of occasions, they probably won't, but there are consequences for that as well. Default judgments can be entered, assets can be seized, it can put difficulty on them traveling or coming to the United States. So there can be serious consequences if our legislation passes and Chinese officials refused to even respond to those lawsuits.
Our legislation will also allow China to fess up, say come forward for what they did, create a pool of money from which people can recover, as we also did for the 9/11 victims, and then we would turn off that sovereign immunity. Let's just say that I don't expect communist China to do that, and therefore, it's important that we open up our courts to the American people to sue the Chinese officials who are responsible for unleashing this pandemic on the world.
HUCKABEE: Senator, it would seem that this should be such an easy bipartisan lift for the members of Congress, House and Senate, Republican and Democrat.
Why aren't the Democrats joining with you to hold the Chinese communists accountable for this? And I'm not trying to be partisan. I honestly want to know. You rub shoulders with them all day.
What are they thinking? Why aren't they saying, that's great, let's go after ‘em?
COTTON: Yes. Well, I hope they will, Governor. In some cases in the past, I've worked together pretty well with, for instance, Chuck Schumer on the issues related to China. Maybe the only time we've worked together on a legislation.
So I do suspect some Democrats will join us. But unfortunately, some of the Democratic Party, some in the media basically want to take the side of anyone Donald Trump as opposed to, and President Trump has made it clear that China is responsible for this virus. Or, for example, as you said, he's made it clear that Tedros at the World Health Organization, badly, badly heard (ph) and probably was just spinning for China.
And what do you have? You have Democrats and the media rushing to the defense of the World Health Organization.
So, I think there's some -- in this issue, there's some simply kneejerk reflection of opposition to President Trump. Even as is so often the case, he is on the right side of this issue.
HUCKABEE: We were seeing you throw some flags way back in January about the potential harm of this. A lot of people didn't take you seriously then. Do you feel a little vindicated? And by the same token, what did you see that the rest of America just flat didn't see back then?
COTTON: No, Governor, it's hard to say. One can feel vindicated or feel good about for seeing all of this when we have over 50,000 Americans who have died and 27 million Americans who have lost their livelihoods. That's not the thing about which one wishes to be proven right.
But looking back in January when the rest of Washington was obsessed about the impeachment trial, I saw the contrast between Chinese rhetoric on the one hand that tried to say everything was calm and under control and this virus couldn't pass from human to human when they knew that it was highly contagious, and even lethal, versus Chinese action which reflected that knowledge. They shut down schools in all of mainland China. They literally welded the doors shut on apartment buildings in Wuhan. They shut down air travel with China -- to Hong Kong which they otherwise would never do.
So, the contrast between their lying rhetoric and their drastic, extreme action told me that this virus had the potential to be a deadly pandemic.
HUCKABEE: Thanks for joining us tonight, Senator. Great to see you.
Coming up next on "Hannity," were going to be hearing more and more about the COVID-19 antibody test. When can you get your hands on one of those tests?
Dr. Nicole Saphier is going to join us next. She'll explain. And she's got a brand-new book out. We're going to ask her about it, so stay with us.
HUCKABEE: Welcome back to this special edition of "Hannity."
A lot of Americans are very curious about the antibody testing for COVID- 19, especially after new antibody study in New York suggests that nearly 3 million New Yorkers may have actually had coronavirus.
Joining us now to weigh in is the author of the brand-new book "Make America Healthy Again: How Bad Behavior and Big Government Caused a Trillion Dollar Crisis." FOX News contributor, Dr. Nicole Saphier, joins us.
Dr. Saphier, I want to start with the idea of testing. We keep hearing that this is most important single thing we are going to have, are we getting tests that are going to be simpler, easier to administer? I'm hearing some that may even come in the mail to people.
DR. NICHOLE SAPHIER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, Governor, it's great to be on with you this evening, and the truth is we have been waiting for this random serologic prevalence testing because that really gives us a good idea of not only how many people have been infected with the virus but how many people have recovered and are possibly immune to it at this point. So, we saw a couple of smaller studies come out of California, the biggest one being released from New York just this week, 3,000 patients, albeit but is still a small sample size when you're considering the population of New York state, but what it is telling us is, that there's a higher infection rate which means there's also going to be a lower fatality rate, meaning the fewer amount of people who are affected are actually going to die from this virus.
But that being said, this is very different from that nasal swab that we've been talking about, that PCR test, the molecular test. That nasal swab is actually looking for the presence of the virus. The serology test or this blood test is actually looking for the antibodies that your body has produced in response.
So, it is much easier in the fact that you are just having to give blood like you've done many times before as opposed to that very invasive nasal swab. In terms of at home usage, I'm not necessarily sure of that but I can tell you there are many, many, many private and public companies who are stepping up and developing their own antibody tests so that people can have increased access to them.
HUCKABEE: Over the past couple of months, you have been a very common, reassuring voice from the medical community. Helping people understand some of the specifics of this, giving people a due sense of concern, but not revving people up to be scared to death. I am wondering, at this point of our dealing with the coronavirus, should Americans be hopeful, optimistic, or should we just crawl up under the bed, get in the fetal position and wait for the end?
SAPHIER: Well, let me tell you, I believe with using facts over fear. I think the more education you have, the more empowered you are as an individual. So I try to provide that information.
The truth is I am extremely optimistic at this time. We have finally flattened the curve, which has been our goal for the last six weeks, and in many cases, we are actually seeing declining numbers.
But the truth is, we have to be cautiously optimistic. Yes, it is absolutely time that we start reopening but we have to do it in a smart manner because the economic fallout, the anxiety, the depression, the suicide and drug overdose deaths that may happen after decreasing employment rates, we have to take that into effect as well. So, yes, we have to take people out of the house, we have to do that in a smart manner but I do see a lot of reason for optimism right now.
HUCKABEE: Your book is so timely. "Make America Healthy Again", it is more about prevention than intervention. Why is that really the answer long term and big time for the health issues of the country?
SAPHIER: Well, it's quite interesting in the sense that, you know, the book is timely, although COVID-19 didn't exist when I wrote the book, but it's so relevant to what is going on right now because we have rendered ourselves vulnerable to COVID-19. We know that the elderly are dying from this but also those with pre-existing medical conditions.
In New York, 94 percent of people with severe illness or who died had at least one pre-existing condition and when you have 60 percent of Americans with pre-existing conditions, that is why so many people have fallen ill here. We had to make makeshift hospitals in Central Park because we didn't have enough room in our hospital systems because of this chronic illness epidemic that we have in our country.
Had we been more prudent before, living healthier lifestyles and really just having positive incentives to live a healthier life, we would've been much more prepared for this virus. But unfortunately in my opinion, government intrusion into our health care system has taken us farther away from being a healthier nation.
HUCKABEE: Dr. Saphier, we've got to --
SAPHIER: And I dove into leading causes of -- yeah, go ahead.
HUCKABEE: We've got to end it there, I'm so sorry.
Your book is great, "Make America Healthy Again." People need to get it.
SAPHIER: No, that's OK.
HUCKABEE: Coming up, comedian Ricky Gervais is calling out Hollywood elites yet again. Wait until you hear what he said this time. That's next as this edition of "Hannity" continues.
HUCKABEE: Welcome back to this special edition of "Hannity."
During the pandemic, you may have noticed some celebrities complaining from inside their spacious mansions, or maybe singing songs on social media to stay relevant.
Comedian Ricky Gervais has been known to poke fun at self-important Hollywood elites in the past. He's back at it again.
In an interview with "The New York Times", he says and I quote: I've got nothing against anyone being a celebrity or being famous. I think that people are just a bit tired of being lectured to. Now, celebrities think the general public needs to see my face. They can't get to the cinema, I need to do something. And it's when you look into their eyes that you know that even if they're doing something good, they're sort of thinking, I could weep at what a good person I am. Oh dear.
I say bravo, Ricky Gervais.
Well, unfortunately, that's all the time we've got left this evening. My thanks to Sean Hannity for allowing me to host "Hannity" tonight and an invitation to see my show hotly named "Huckabee" on TBN, Saturday, 8:00/11:00 p.m. Eastern. Guests include Roger Stone, Congressman Matt Gaetz, Paula Peres, Max Lucado, and country singer Clint Black. Cable, satellite and broadcast or you could go to huckabee.tv for local listings or to watch online.
Thank you so much for joining us tonight. Sean is going to be back on Monday. I know you're glad to hear that.
Stay safe, be well this weekend.
"The Ingraham Angle" starts right now.
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