White House: Trump's critics are trying to divide Americans

This is a rush transcript from "The Story," October 29, 2018. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, HOST: On a much more serious note, the president and the first lady will head to Pittsburgh tomorrow where a horrifying killing unfolded on Saturday as a gunman massacred 11 innocent worshipers in a local synagogue.

It was an attack on people of faith by a man who said he wanted to, "kill Jews". Tonight, there are calls for unity as there always are. But until both sides are willing to reach out and lower the heat, it feels unlikely.  Talk of tone, rhetoric, and civility on politics pervades, with many pointing fingers at the president for not cooling his own language. A notion the White House strongly rejects.


SARAH SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The president is not responsible for these acts. Again, the very first action that the President did was condemn these heinous acts. The very first thing that the media did was condemned the president and go after and try to place blame, not just on the president but everybody that works in this administration.


MACCALLUM: So, in a moment, we'll be joined by Mercedes Schlapp with new reaction from the White House tonight. As well as Howie Kurtz, Jonathan Swan, and later, an exclusive with the president's 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale.

But we start with Trace Gallagher, as the shooting suspect was in court for the first time today. Trace.

TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Martha, the suspect, 46-year-old Robert Bowers who was shot multiple times arrived to court in a wheelchair.  When he was asked by a judge if he understood the 29 federal charges against him, including 11 counts of murder and hate crimes, Bowers responded, "Yes, sir."

Prosecutors have already said, they plan to seek the death penalty.  Authorities say, Bowers, stormed the Tree of Life synagogue on Saturday with a rifle and three handguns, all of which he legally owned.

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers said, he heard a loud noise that sounded like a steel coatrack falling. But when he saw people running and heard pops, he knew it was gunfire. Watch.


JEFFREY MYERS, RABBI, TREE OF LIFE: I instructed my congregants to drop to the floor, don't move, be quiet. I took the people, some of the people in the front and tried to get them out of the center through the front of the center some of the doors we have there to either an exit out of the building or to closet some place to hide.


GALLAGHER: Rabbi Myers then hid in the bathroom and called 911. He says he could hear the shooter execute his congregants. Robert Bowers is a long-haul trucker with a significant history of making anti-Semitic and other bigoted statements on social media.

The day of the shooting Bower's reportedly went onto Gab.com, a site favored by right-wing extremist and wrote about his opposition to the migrant caravan. Blaming a Jewish aid group for bringing, "Invaders that kill our people." Though it's unclear who exactly his people are.

Police said before, during, and after the rampage, Robert Bowers made numerous statements about killing Jews. Saying, "Jews need to die." Even repeating those statements to the doctors and nurses trying to save his life, all of whom are Jewish.

And as the White House said that President Trump and the First Lady will visit Pittsburgh tomorrow, a liberal Jewish group sent an open letter to the president saying, "He is not welcome until he denounces white nationalism.

But Rabbi Myers who may have saved numerous lives said, he welcomes the president's visit. The first two funerals will also be held in Pittsburgh tomorrow for 59-year-old Cecil Rosenthal, and his 54-year-old brother, David. Martha.

MACCALLUM: They would greet everybody as they came into the synagogue.  These brothers who had been going there for decades. It's just horrific.  Trace, thank you very much. So, in the wake of that attack in Pittsburgh, critics were quick to blame at the top.


MARK HETFIELD, PRESIDENT, HEBREW IMMIGRANT AID SOCIETY: There's no question that the toxic environment that we're now in of hate speech has not been helped by the president's words. Absolutely not.

JULIA IOFFE, POLITICAL REPORTER, GENTLEMEN'S QUARTERLY MAGAZINE: The flames of his hatred were fanned by a president who kept talking about this caravan, of refugees as if they were terrorists.

REP. ADAM SCHIFF, D-CALIF., HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: And I think this president's whole modus operandi is to divide us. He gets up in the morning with new and inventive ways to divide us.


MACCALLUM: Here now, Mercedes Schlapp, White House director of strategic communications. Mercedes, good evening. Good to have you with us tonight.


MACCALLUM: So you heard all of that, what's your reaction?

SCHLAPP: You know, clearly the president's first message after this tragedy happened in Pittsburgh was out of unite -- uniting the country.  And the Democrats and some of the media have focused their time basically dividing the country. In essence, blaming the president and his staff actually for these horrific acts.

I mean, that's just simply outrageous. It's -- they spent hours and hours.  Some in the media, and as well as the Democrats just focusing on putting this blame on the president. I mean, we saw the president of one media organization basically going after Sarah Sanders and the -- and President Trump.

So, what, I spoke with a -- with a friend of mine, he's Jewish American.  And she told me something so interesting, and she's not political, and she said to me she goes, "When I heard this, it literally took away from this solemn moment. It took away from honoring the victims and honoring these families who are going through this horrific time. This is a moment of prayer in this country. This is a moment of unity for this country. That is a message that the president has sent to the American people."

MACCALLUM: All right.

SCHLAPP: And we, of course, feel very distressed by the fact that the -- those the Democrats and some of the media have decided to just put the blame on the problem.

MACCALLUM: Well, let's take a look at a couple of the president's tweets.  The first of which mirrors exactly what you're saying. It says, "All of America is in mourning over the mass murder of Jewish Americans at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. We pray for those who perished and their loved ones, and our hearts go out to the brave police officers who sustained serious injuries," and it goes on in that vein.

But then, Mercedes, this is the next one. "There is great anger in our country crossed in part by an inaccurate, even fraudulent reporting of the news. The fake news media, the true enemy of the people. Must stop the open and obvious hostility, and report the news accurately and fairly."

Does that help to unite the country calling the press the enemy of the people?

SCHLAPP: Well, let's start with who did this fight. Right after the president talked about unifying the country, even beforehand, there were certain, certain liberal media outlets, as well as the Democrats coming out and outrightly putting blame on the president. This included Senator Schumer, this included Representative Nancy Pelosi.


SCHLAPP: So to be clear, they're starting this battle by putting the blame -- this very horrific act caused by deranged individuals on the president.  That is irresponsible reporting and irresponsible statements.


MACCALLUM: No. I think -- you know, I think you're right. I mean, you can -- you can pretty much trace -- you can -- I hear what's your saying that's -- and you can trace -- you now, the beginning of the president's good intention to say the right thing and to recognize the horrific moment and the event.

But then, you can also see the president's reaction to what comes at him, and I think, you know in many ways, obviously, you can't blame him, but there are those who are sort of calling for him to take a higher road because as you know, Anthony Scaramucci, who you know, who worked in the White House for a short time.

He said, "The president is the only person we all vote for. So for me, I would love to see the stuff dial back on both sides. But good leadership requires that somebody go first, and I'd like it to be him.

SCHLAPP: Yes, and the president did go first. And the president talked about unifying this country. It's an important message that we keep discussing. With that being said, it was in less than moments after these tragedies have happened that the blame was put solely on this president.


MACCALLUM: Which is wrong. I mean, I think everybody could have renown, nobody pulled that trigger other than the gunman.

SCHLAPP: In terms of this -- which is wrong. Right, right, right.

MACCALLUM: Every -- you know, I think every sane thinking human being who watches this and like your friend does not want this to be the focus. But let me ask you this, in terms of -- you know, the high road, is there any discussion among you at the White House about the president -- you know, giving a speech perhaps as a starting point to say, "You know what, let's have a truce, this isn't serving anybody well." Is there any discussion about something along those lines?

SCHLAPP: Loo, the president tomorrow will be traveling to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he'll be meeting with the governor, as well as, the mayor, and as well as the rabbi of the synagogue. And it is a moment of time where he will be mourning with those families who have lost loved ones. He will honor these brave men and women who lost their lives. And this is a moment in time in our country where that has to stand, that's the -- that's the moment. This is a moment where we do have to come in prayer, where we do have to think about this horrible tragedy that happened because of a deranged individual who took these innocent lives.

And so, the president has talked about this message. Whether the media and the Democrats want to stop, trying to score political points, we'll wait and see what happens. Let's see how they cover it tomorrow. So far, I have found that it has been just saddening to watch how the direct blame in less than 24 hours after these tragedies have happened has been squarely on the President and on his staff, which is very irresponsible and unfair.

And so, I think the president responded to this -- the media, and how some of those in the media portrayed the president, how they're allowing these continual discussions to happen about just clearly criticizing the president at all costs, and not looking at the core of the problem here, which are dealing with deranged individuals who have taken innocent lives.

MACCALLUM: There's no doubt about that, and there's no doubt about the fact that as a country, we all need to pray for these families. Because you can just imagine what it is like for these 11 individuals, families, all of whom are mourning. And as you say, the president and first lady will go there to join them. And then, community in spirit in that effort, as well, tomorrow.

Mercedes, thank you very much. Good to see you tonight as always.

SCHLAPP: Thank you so much.

MACCALLUM: Here now with more tonight. Howie Kurtz, a host of "MediaBuzz". And Jonathan Swan, national political reporter for Axios. Good to have both of you with us tonight.

Jonathan, let me start with you. Just in terms of the coverage and watching this from both sides, the White House, and the press, how do you think the press has done?

JONATHAN SWAN, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, AXIOS: Well, I don't sort of try to get in the game of press criticism. I think some of the coverage with this president on any given topic is over-the-top and hysterical. I think we find that no matter what the topic is. And -- you know, from his side of things -- I mean, again, I don't really like getting into tits and tats.


MACCALLUM: No, I understand that. And I'm not trying to get you to be (INAUDIBLE). Good.

SWAN: But I will just say -- but I -- but I will just say one thing. It does concern me as someone who cares about the press and the media, and also just this country, even though I have a different accent. When he uses a term, the enemy of the people. There are a lot of people who love this president, who follow him, who are fervent fans of his. And some of those people are crazy. And that language is just -- it's incendiary. And I worried that it's going to lead to really bad consequence.


HOWARD KURTZ, FOX NEWS MEDIA ANALYST: Martha, the time when the country needs healing, it seems that both sides are just locked in an escalating vicious cycle of harsher and harsher rhetoric. So, Washington Post front- page headline, yesterday day after the synagogue Massacre.

Critics say Trump has fostered the toxic environment. For the political violence, he denounces the critics being liberals in the story. You show GQ reporter Julia Ioffe, earlier. She tweeted, "A word to my fellow American Jews, this president makes this possible." Today on CNN, Ioffe said, Donald Trump has radicalized more people than ISIS.

But at the same time, I fault the president who by the way was very eloquent the night after the Pittsburgh shootings and talking about the poison of anti-Semitism and the history of persecution of Jews. And then, when he goes back to the true enemy of the people, for fake news, which is mostly most of the media as he defines it, it's essentially calling journalists' traitors.

It's wrong. Journalists love this country whatever mistakes they may make.  And it undermines the president's own call over the weekend to lower the voices and the temperature.

MACCALLUM: Right. You know I -- and I pointed that out to Mercedes Schlapp, who we spoke to -- you know, just a moment ago. But you know, you can watch the president, we've all watched him long enough to know that his -- you know, his initial instinct was to sort of be with the moment to express obvious sorrow.

And then, you know, he flips on the T.V. He starts hearing people saying, it's his fault, blaming him for -- you know, inciting an insane deranged individual to walk into a synagogue and kill people.

You know, I mean, my guess is that this person was insane and deranged before President Trump was in office, Jonathan. And I think -- you know, we have to be very, very careful.

We -- I think in some ways -- you know, President Trump's rhetoric is obviously very out there. And it's very obvious. But it doesn't necessarily mean that there hasn't been -- you know, presidents in the past who have also had very strong feelings about things. Do you think that the -- Jonathan, you know, back to you, and I -- and I understanding that -- you know, you obviously a reporter who covers the White House.

But as a reporter who covers President Trump, you know, what do you make of that watching how he reacts to things. You know, is it politically advantageous for him? Does it work for him in any way? Is he appealing to someone on purpose?

SWAN: Its true things at once. It's his natural instincts, and yes, absolutely. Of course, it appeals him to a certain section of the public.  The president's people, his people as he calls them, "My people." They love this. They love hearing this. They're already angry at the press, and it makes them angrier, and they cheer him on. And you see that the rallies.

I mean, I covered Trump -- about President Trump during the campaign. All he would need to say by the end, it was like a call-and-response. He would just say Hillary Clinton, and the crowd would start chanting, "Lock her up."

There's another half of the country there that he's not talking to when he says this. So, it's -- look, it's hard to -- it's hard to kind of give credence to the first statement. Too much credence to the first statement when you know that -- you know, the real Donald -- unfiltered Donald Trump is the enemy of the people comment.

He is pugnacious, he wants to fight, and he sees the press is a useful foil. He uses the media. He's probably -- I think in the last twenty years or thirty years, I've never seen a politician manipulate the media the way President Trump --

MACCALLUM: Let me just read this from Brit Hume and I want to get your reaction Howie and then we got -- we have to go.

KURTZ: Sure.

MACCALLUM: Brit Hume tweeted this today. One of Trump's main failings is that he thinks everything is about him. One of his critics main failings is that they do too. Their reaction to the hideous events of last week makes this clearer than ever. Howie?

KURTZ: That really nails it. Because look, while it's fine for the press to try to hold President Trump accountable for sometimes divisive, sometimes incendiary rhetoric, this whole idea of guilt by association, blood on the hands, I didn't like those kinds of comments under President Obama, I don't like them aimed at President Trump being to the actions of lunatics who are filled with hate. At the same time when this liberal group of Jewish leaders in Pittsburgh says don't come, we don't want you here and you incited this attack, I mean that is -- that is a libel.

It seems like who cares at this point who started this. Anybody president, press, political party is going to stop it as opposed to pointing fingers but who started it, kind of rise above and help us lower the tone just a little bit.

MACCALLUM: Yes, it was a time in this country when an event like this would have just brought everyone together in sympathy for the horrific act that was beset upon this synagogue while these people are praying. And now if instantly goes -- everybody goes to their corner and you know I guess for that part of it certainly not for the crime itself, there is blame to go around. Gentlemen, thank you very much. Go ahead, Jonathan, quick though.

SWAN: We could do the two sides thing, and I -- and I agree with you but he is the most powerful man on earth. His voice is not equal. He does -- he does have the capacity to speak to a nation in a way that no one else does.

MACCALLUM: Thank you, Jonathan. Thank you, Howard Kurtz. More coming up on that thought as we move forward this morning -- I mean this evening, is unity possible in America? Trey Gowdy taking apart a few witnesses in his time on the Hill.


REP. TREY GOWDY, R-S.C.I don't give a damn what you appreciate Agent Strzok, I don't appreciate having an FBI agent with an unprecedented level of animus working on two major investigations during 2016.


MACCALLUM: However, Chairman Gowdy believes that it can be done. Unity is possible and he joins me next.


MACCALLUM: Politics surely more potent than ever continue to divide Americans right down the middle as the gap grows deeper by the day and we look at the images of these individuals who lost their lives and in the wake of it there is so much discussion about the division in this country.  Joining me now the co-author of Unified: How Unlikely Friendship Gives Us Hope for a Divided Country, Congressman Trey Gowdy, and that was co-written by Senator Scott. Good to have you back on the show tonight, Congressman.  Thank you very much for being here.

GOWDY: Yes, ma'am.

MACCALLUM: You know, I want to start with what we left off with Jonathan Swan who covers the White House and talking about the sort of battle that goes on and the paint the fingers that are pointed over what happened at the synagogue this weekend. But he felt that the responsibility lies more on the President than it does on the press because he is quote the most powerful person in the world. Do you agree with that?

GOWDY: Well, I certainly agree he's the most powerful person in the world.  He has a unique opportunity. I have never been good, Martha, at changing other people's behavior. I need to be good and engaging in self- reflection. And if every one of my fellow citizens would look in the mirror and say what can I do to improve our country, how can I be less divisive, how can I be more intentional in my efforts to unify this country. I can't change President Trump's behavior, I can't change the headlines at Politico and Washington Post. What I would love to see the President do when he goes to Pittsburgh is to -- is to eulogize the lives of those lost. That's what's unifying.

Just like in Charleston, when I had my fellow South Carolinians lost their lives simply because they are black, get to know the people who lost their lives. That would be unifying for my fellow citizens but politicizing tragedies hours after they happened is just reflective of how incredibly divisive we are.

MACCALLUM: Here's a picture that you tweeted with sort of like your dream of how you wish things could be. Explain what you meant here.

GOWDY: Well, Bill Nettles in that picture was the U.S. Attorney under President Obama. He's to the left of Chairman Mao. Politically we've been friends for ten years and we'll be friends until we die. Tulsi Gabbard is one of the kindest, nicest, most decent people I have ever met. She happens to be a progressive from Hawaii. We are -- you wouldn't put a progressive Hindu from Hawaii with a three-part Calvinist Republican from South Carolina. But we have been intentional in our desire to have a friendship and I think part of what plagues our country now is we have a tendency to surround ourselves with people who just ratify what we already believe.

I mean, if you want to understand how President Obama was elected twice, you got to ask somebody who voted for him and the same with Donald Trump.  The media cannot fathom how he is presidents. Ask someone who voted for him. They will tell you why he is the President of the United States. But if all you do is surround yourself with the philosophy department at Princeton, then no, there are no Trump supporters there. So go ask some people in real America who felt an angst and an uncertainty that led to his election. But if all we do is talk to people they just ratify what we already believe, we're headed in a bad direction.

MACCALLUM: Yes, you make a good -- great point. You know 80 percent of t e country believes that we are divided. And the other thing that I think it's lost in this conversation is you know, you talk about what happened in South Carolina. There's a problem with you know, individuals who live in isolation who are not part of a community, who perhaps aren't part of their own faith who commit these kinds of acts over and over. They obviously are very deeply unstable, very deeply disturbed. And instead of talking about what's going wrong with the fabric of our of our community, perhaps that this kind of person you know, gets left out in the cold and allowed to do something like this. We end up you know deep diving into you know the things that he said on social media and all -- and all of this.

GOWDY: Well, speaking of things that ought to unify us Martha, there ought to be common standards of decency. There ought to be a common acknowledgement. That we need a moral code by which we live, that racism is wrong, that intolerance is wrong that what Dylann Roof believed before he got in a car and drove to Charleston, not just what he did but what he believed before he got in a car is reprehensible and insidious and the same with the shooter and Pittsburgh. But when we lose that sense of unity that there is a moral code that is not relativistic. It exists every day. Then it leads to this kind of malaise that that, unfortunately, we find ourselves and tragedy used to be unifying but now Martha it lasts for about 30 minutes.

I want to focus on the victims. If the President Trump will focus on the victims and their lives, I think that's what my fellow Americans would love. Not focus on the shooter and not focus on the politics of it, focus on the lives that were lost and how that impacts dozens and hundreds of people that were involved in their lives. I think that would be unifying.

MACCALLUM: Chairman Trey Gowdy, always good to see you, sir. Thank you very much for being here tonight.

GOWDY: Yes, ma'am. You too. Yes ma'am.

MACCALLUM: So coming up after this. This is not the first time that the President ran a Midterm campaign that had a pretty good economy and jobs picture while some of his opponents were in the middle of investigations and perhaps impeachment proceedings. So what President Trump and America perhaps could learn from what happened in 1998 with President Clinton coming up next.


BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT: Let me say I'm very proud of what our party did yesterday in the face of the tide of history and an enormous financial disadvantage.


MACCALLUM: So, we got seven days now until the big election, the most important midterms ever according to the president, but if you dig deep into our history, you would see a similar race with the roles completely reversed.

On October 29th, 1998, exactly 20 years ago today, Bill Clinton was president and Republicans were running on impeachment and Democrats were running on this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Republicans have made removing the president from office their top priority. They want to waste millions of our tax dollars on endless investigations. Democrats believe this election is about solving our real problems, protecting social security, patient's rights, smaller class sizes and more teachers, haven't our families and our children have enough partisan investigating. Republicans so intent on attacking the president they've forgotten about us.

Next Tuesday, vote Democratic and tell Congress we're ready to move on.


MACCALLUM: Well, that's fascinating, right. If you are wondering how that message worked out--


BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Welcome to Washington. I'm Brit Hume. This town is certainly buzzing and the happy sounds are almost all coming from relieved and delighted Democrats.

As for the Republicans who thought a scandal plagued president in his six year in office would certainly mean gains for him, it is a time of agonizing reappraisal.


MACCALLUM: He is a classic. Mike Emanuel is here with the story from the 1998 midterms, and how they could foreshadow what's to come. Good evening, Mike.

MIKE EMANUEL, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Martha, good evening. There are certainly some interesting similarities between now and 20 years ago. Both Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton had strong economies going in their favor. Each have criticized what they consider to be unfair media coverage.

Both the 42nd and 45th president had to deal with special legal probes, in Clinton's era it was independent counsel Kenneth Star, now of course, President Trump is dealing with special counsel Robert Mueller conducting an investigation. Today, the White House press secretary was asked if this election is a referendum on President Trump.


SANDERS: Look, I can't get into specifics that will impact the election. But I can tell you that the president wants to see more people that support has policies elected than not.


EMANUEL: Back in 1998, Newt Gingrich said the buck stop with him.


NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Look, I'm the speaker so I'll take responsibility. We should probably have aggressively push cutting taxes and saving social security much harder than we did this year.


EMANUEL: This time Republican leaders are campaigning against Nancy Pelosi becoming speaker again and warning that Democrats like Adam Schiff and Maxine Waters could be committee chairs of Democrats are in charge. The lawmaker charged with winning Democrats back in the majority of the House made this bold prediction on Fox News Sunday.


BEN RAY LUJAN, CHAIRMAN, DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSIONAL CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE: I'm confident that Democrats will win back the House this year. We felt our strategy around our candidates, incredible men and women with records of service. Many who have served our country in the U.S. military, former CIA officers and FBI who have committed their lives to keeping our country safe.


EMANUEL: A key theme for GOP leaders is a Republican Congress will continue working on solutions that protect and prolong our prosperity. Soon we'll see if this is similar to 1998 or an election all its own. Martha?

MACCALLUM: Soon we will see. Mike, thank you very much. Joining me now is former Democratic Senator Evan Bayh who flipped Indiana from Republican to Democrat in that 1998 election. Sir, good to see you, thank you so much for being here tonight.

So, what goes through your mind when you look back at those 20 years ago images and the ad and everything when you think about what's happening in this election?

FORMER SEN. EVAN BAYH, D-IND.: Well, Martha, thank you for having me.


BAYH: It's amazing how much things can change in 20 years, although the way things change, sometimes can remain the same. In that particular election, my home state is a deep red state that President Trump carried Indiana by 19 points. But back in that particular election, I happen to win by 24.

I don't think that's possible today. I don't think I or anyone else could do that today because the country is so deeply polarized. And yet, the thing that remains the same, and your reporter might put his finger right on it, and that the ad that you showed, puts its finger right on it. People want the election to be about them and their concerns. Middle class concerns.

And politicians who focus on that and put some of the political buzz to the side they are the ones who tend to do the best.

MACCALLUM: Let's take a look at a Gallup poll which shows back in 1998 the Democratic Party -- you know, the question was which political party do you think and do a better job of handling the problem that you think is most important, the Republican Party or Democratic Party.

And when you compare them, you can see from, you know, 20 years ago and from today they are basically pretty much evenly divided, 41 to 40 and 42 to 40. When you sort of put all that in the mix and you look at what's going on out there, do you think that Democrats are focusing on the right thing if they want to retake the House?

BAYH: Well, I think the Kavanaugh hearings were a tactical error in the way that they were portrayed to the public. That really energized the Republican base. And again, I think many middle-class Americans and undecided voters and independents were saying, what does this have to do with me and my daily concerns?

I think the rhetoric out there on the far left about impeaching the president and all that, that's just a replay of what the mistake that Newt Gingrich made 20 years ago, so that hurts the Democrats.

So, I think in this particular election, though, again, unfortunately the country as Congressman Gowdy has pointed out is so deeply divided, that's going to help the Democrats in the House because many of those districts were carried by Hillary Clinton. But in my own body of the United States Senate, most of those races are in deep red states. That's going to help the Republicans.

We almost have, Martha, a parliamentary system today where your viewers and the American people think there is a party on the left and party on the right. They are not really judging the candidates on their individual merits and instead they think, just go out there to Washington and they are going to vote the party line.

I kind of hope we get back to the day where individual character, individual ideas and individual dependents matter but right now it doesn't seem to matter that much.

MACCALLUM: Fascinating. Well, very good to have you with us, sir. Thank you. Former Senator Evan Bayh from Indiana, great to have you with us tonight.

BAYH: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: So, you may have notice that the stock market took a pretty big hit last week and now the Wall Street journal says it's all downhill from here. Details on the politics behind this. What's at stake, and are they right? When we come back.


MACCALLUM: So, the markets took a bit of a hit today, down about 250 points for the Dow wiping out gains from earlier in the day as many on Wall Street fear that maybe the worst is yet to come. Even the Wall Street Journal, quote, "U.S. economy smashed signs it's downhill from here."

I love this headline, right. Here now one of the authors of that article, Jon Hilsenrath, global economics editor and Fox News contributor, and Susan Li from the Fox Business Network. Jon, let me start with you.


MACCALLUM: Is it really that gloomy?

HILSENRATH: Well, let me say, our article today wasn't saying that there's going to be a recession. No one that we're talking is predicting a recession. But what we are saying is that the growth rate of the economy looks like it's going to slow down. We had great growth in the last six months, 4.2 percent in the second quarter, and 3.5 percent in the third quarter. But a lot of the economists that we've talked to are predicting a slow down to under 3 percent in the months ahead.

MACCALLUM: And what's the biggest reason why?

HILSENRATH: Well, one of the things that's concerning is that we're not -- we've seen business investment slow down and if we are going to get these faster growth rates of 3 percent that President Trump has talked about, we need this investment to boost worker productivity.

And we started to have that earlier in the year in the last couple of reports on gross domestic product show that business investment has slowed. That might have something to do with tariff wars that we've been involved in.

MACCALLUM: All right. I want to play this quick sound bite from Jerome Powell, because the president thinks it's partly his problem. Watch this.


JEROME POWELL, CHAIRMAN, FEDERAL RESERVE: Really extraordinary accommodative low interest rates that we needed when the economy was quite weak. We don't need those anymore. We need interest rates to be gradually - - be very gradually moving back towards normal.


MACCALLUM: So why is he signaling that he's going to keep going, Susan, that's not really typical.

SUSAN LI, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's not typical. And in fact, he really spooks the markets and this market sell-off when he said he's going to take interest rates pass neutral, that means it might even be higher than we anticipated and every earnings call from every company that I've been on so far in this earnings season has pointed that out as a big, big headwind heading into next year and this year as well.

MACCALLUM: All right. So, real quick from the president, here's what he thought about that.


TRUMP: The biggest threat is the Fed, because the Fed is raising rates too fast, and it's independent so I don't speak to him but I'm not happy with what he's doing. Give me a zero interest rates right now, and you take a look at our numbers. It would be - - it will be the greatest economy in the history of the world.


MACCALLUM: So, they said they for, like, one thought for me. So, real quick, Susan, what did you think about that?

LI: It has been shown historically that the Federal Reserve has ended big bull market runs and that's what the market is really concerned about right now. So, well, goldilocks is what we like, Jon.

HILSENRATH: I would say, we have zero interest rates because we had inflation near zero for many years and inflation is now near 2 percent which is the Feds target so that's why it's raising interest rates because inflation has picked up.

MACCALLUM: Thanks guys, great to see you both. Good to have you here tonight.

So, Democrats haven't been shy about telling Hillary Clinton that they feel like -- a lot of them at least, they would like her to go away and make room for new people. What say she?






MACCALLUM: Very interesting, right. Brad Parscale, manager of President Trump's 2020 election campaign joins me exclusively for the rest of the show with his thoughts on the possible opponents and all the rest, next.


MACCALLUM: So, despite repeated calls by many Democrats to just take a step back, Hillary Clinton actually took another step forward fueling speculation that she may actually run again.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're going to talk about 2020 in a minute. Do you want to run again?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was a pause there.

CLINTON: Well, I'd like to be president. I'm not even going to think about it until we get through this November 6th election about what's going to happen after that.


MACCALLUM: That sounds like she wants to run. Joining me exclusively, the man who would be on the other side of the campaign fight if Hillary decided to run again, Brad Parscale is the manager of President Trump's 202 campaign. Brad, great to have you back on the show.

BRAD PARSCALE, CAMPAIGN MANAGER, TRUMP 2020 REELECTION: Thanks for having me back, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So, is that who the president would like to run again?

PARSCALE: It's almost, I'm caught off guard that she's talking about running again. If she ends up being the candidate then I'm happy to have the Trump 2.0 version against Hillary I guess. It's shocking though, I would think it's time for the Clintons to go out to pasture.

MACCALLUM: Yes. She is very interesting to me because she clearly wants to leave the door open here and I would imagine that there are a lot of them, so many Democrats who want to run. I mean, I'm picturing that it's probably going to be like when President Trump ran the first time with like 17 people up there, right?

PARSCALE: I think it's going to be brutal, you know, I think -- I think they can't all run saying they don't like the president, you know. They all going to have to choose and they are going to tear each other apart.

And I think it's going to be an interesting primary for Democrats. We'll see who comes out the other end. You know, we are going to be open to multiple people, you know. We are going to watch and start to get our op-ed research and do everything we can to, you know, be ready.

MACCALLUM: Yes, I want to ask you quickly about what you thought about some people blaming the president for what happened in Pittsburgh and also for the would-be pipe bomber?

PARSCALE: Yes. Look, I just think that's just clearly wrong. I mean, look, the president, you know, in the campaign, this is a fight, and we have been in a fight. But it's a fight with our hearts and our minds, not with our fists. And like, clearly, we don't condone violence. I don't anyone to get hurt.

But the fake news media, I must be clear, it's the fake news media and not the media has been an attack and they've done everything they can to try to destroy the president, destroy this movement and try to wipe off tens of millions of Americas on what they think and what they believe in for the future.

I've been a victim of that and multiple people in the administration have been a victim of that and we are going to continue to fight. It's a fight with our hearts and our minds. Unfortunately, evil exists and we don't want to awaken it. And I just don't think, the blame sits on those evildoers but we have to continue to fight for tens of millions of people, where I came from. In a hometown in Kansas where I came from, the people that have been forgotten.

MACCALLUM: Let's take a look at how you're doing that. This is your new ad and I want to get a thought on what you are thinking with this. Watch this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Things are starting to change. There's more opportunity and security to invest in the ones that matter.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Look, we can't get distracted from the biggest issue which are jobs and our kid's future.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But this could all go away if we don't remember where we came from. And choose the right future.


MACCALLUM: So, this is for the midterms. No President Trump in there.

PARSCALE: Yes. Well, look, there's multiple audiences you have to win for an election. Look, with this president is doing everything he can to hold the House for the midterms, doing everything he can to flip seats in the Senate, and there's multiple audiences.

We have lots of added ads running that are 100 percent Trump right to voters, low percentage turnout trump voters, but we also have an audience of independent voters. Mothers in this country who really need to make that choice, what's best for their children's future for a economy.

MACCALLUM: And those are areas that you're, you know, potentially in trouble in 2020 as well.


MACCALLUM: Philadelphia, you got Los Angeles, Minnesota, al those suburban moms who may have voted for the president last time maybe don't like some of the comments this time.

PARSCALE: Yes. A lot of moms see that, you know. And 40 percent or so say the economy is a big choice for them. They pay bills. They live paycheck to paycheck sometimes. And this president is making it easier from the wages they're increasing. It's not just about unemployment going down, wages are increasing, real life is getting easier and easier. And we need to remind we could go right back to what things were, when things were tough.

MACCALLUM: Al right. So, when we come back I want to ask you about what the president's first campaign move is going to be after the midterms. Quick break and more with Brad, when we come back.



TRUMP: When you look at that thousands of people -- somebody said, you know, on that one they built a dam. I'm pretty good at figuring out how many people. Thousands and thousands of people on the bridge. When you looked at that bridge loaded up with people. That's called an invasion of our country.


MACCALLUM: Back with Brad Parscale with, the president's 2020 campaign manager. That was from Laura Ingraham's interview the rest of the play tonight. "Invasion" that's the word he is using.


MACCALLUM: People won't take that well.

PARSCALE: Well, this president made a promise to protect our borders to make us a sovereign nation. And without a nation of laws, we're not a nation. We need to protect ourselves from illegal aliens and we need to make sure that we have immigration laws that are compiled by. Otherwise, we are not a country. And I think the president made the promise and he's going to keep it.

MACCALLUM: All right. I want to talk to you, do you think the Republicans can keep the House and the Senate?

PARSCALE: Yes. Well, I think we're in a tough road.


PARSCALE: I think the president--



PARSCALE: I think we can flip seats in the Senate which is only 17 times since 1934 has that ever happened. Only eight seats since 1934 itself. And he could possibly do of those, 50 percent of that since the Great Depression in one election. That just shows right now how the president is.

The House is tough. I think cards are stacked against him. I mean, you had retirements, you had fund-raising problems. You had all kinds of issues. And I think the president rewritten the map to make it easier and I think he's out fighting.

And the fact that I am even sitting here tonight saying we have a chance to hold the House and win seats in the Senate shows clearly this president is doing more than any president has in history doing.


PARSCALE: And his approval rating in the Republican Party is 88 percent, the highest ever had.

MACCALLUM: Put the map up you can see where the president is going. Because, you know, we all remember that you, were the person who was saying we need to go to western Pennsylvania, we need to go to Michigan, we need to go to Ohio. So people look at this map and they say those are all Senate seats. That tells us that they have given up on the House?

PARSCALE: There is a couple of House seats in there and there's also governorship in there. But look, the president also needs to make the biggest impact he can. It's a different race. It's where he can go. And sometimes he's been in one House seat in a place that it's hard to get to might be more difficult.

It's also about the president traveling as the president versus a campaign is night and day. It's like moving an armada versus moving a road runner.

MACCALLUM: Yes, that's a pretty active schedule, Any way he'd been giving that.

PARSCALE: What we have done even with the Secret Service, now I have to give the Secret Service high, you know, marks for when we get this done. It's difficult to move a president and I think on route. Former presidents will tell you it's not that easy to make that many stops and this president is doing it.

MACCALLUM: All right. So, there were three campaign managers the last time around. How many are there going to be this time around?

PARSCALE: Well, officially there were two. There was a campaign chairman. And Kellyanne is still around and I'm friends with Corey so we are all surviving just fine. I'm hoping I'll be the only one. I hope the president trusts in me and help to get it done. I'll have the great support of Jared Kushner and the family like Eric trump. I'll have the president and this family is the most amazing family this country has after seen. And I think they are going to continue to do things that are going to be great for us.

MACCALLUM: All right. Last question. Roseanne on stage with Trump. Good idea? Do you still think that's a good idea?

PARSCALE: Yes. It's now about, look, I think that when you are in the room, you throw out ideas. I still think that, you know, once it came out that she, you know, didn't even know what was happening, I thought, you know, maybe this is an idea, it was kind of in a joking manner. But unfortunately, everything leaks out. She was never on stage.

MACCALLUM: And she will not be, I assume?


MACCALLUM: Is that true?

PARSCALE: Yes. No. There has been no request for that.

MACCALLUM: All right. Unfortunately, we got to leave it there. But I hope you'll come back. It's been very interesting to talk to you as obviously a lot going on. You're going to be the man at the center of all of this very soon.

PARSCALE: Thanks for that reminder.

MACCALLUM: Yes. We will be watching very closely.

PARSCALE: I appreciate that.

MACCALLUM: Good to see you tonight. Thank you, Brad Parscale.

PARSCALE: Thank you very much.

MACCALLUM: That's our story on this Monday night. We'll see you back here tomorrow.
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