For the Record with Greta, Transcript 1/19/2017
Show: FOR THE RECORD
Date: January 19, 2017
Guest: Lindsey Graham, Cal Perry, Mike Allen, Karen Tumulty; Mike Allen;
Lindsey Graham; Sean Spicer; Greg Abbott; Dan Malloy; Franklin Graham
(JOINED IN PROGRESS)
(PERFORMER SINGING) American Guys, We`ll always stand up and salute, We`ll
always recognize when we see old glory flying. There`s a lot of men dead.
So we can sleep in peace at night. When we lay down our head. My daddy
served in the army. Where he lost his right eye. But he flew a flag out
in our yard, until the day that he died. He wanted my mother, my brother,
my sister and me to grow up and live forever in the land of the free. Now
this nation that I love has fallen under attack. A mighty sucker punch
came flying in from somewhere in the back. Soon as we could see clearly
through our big black eye. Man, we lit up your world like the 4th of July.
Hey Uncle Sam, Put your name at the top of his list. And the Statue of
Liberty started shaking her fist. And the eagle will fly. Man, it`s going
to be hell. When you hear Mother Freedom start ringing her bell. And it
feels like the whole wide world is raining down on you. Brought to you
courtesy of the red white and blue. Justice will be served and the battle
will rage. Good guys wins when you rattle their cage. And you`ll be sorry
that you messed with The U.S. of A. We`ll put a boot in your ass it`s the
American way. Hey Uncle Sam put your name at the top of his list. And the
Statue of Liberty started shaking her fist. And the eagle will fly. Man,
it`s going to be hell when you hear Mother Freedom start ringing her bell.
And it feels like the whole wide world is raining down on you. Brought to
you Courtesy of the Red White and Blue
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOR THE RECORD HOST: Well, we`ve been listening to
Toby Keith, playing, singing at the Lincoln Memorial. That is at the far
end of the mall here at Washington, D.C. The other end of the mall is the
United States Capitol where tomorrow the big events are. And next time,
Barrack will be speaking, he is the chairman of the inaugural committee.
And following that, the president-elect of the United States, Donald Trump
will be speaking, and it`s going to be jam packed evening, of course. And
we`ll go to our guess here For The Record, but we`ll listen to Tom Barrack.
TOM BARRACK, INAUGURAL COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: The 45th president of the
United States, Donald Trump. I have to tell you, this is the most
incredible setting and structures that I`ve ever seen, at least of those
that President-elect Trump is not built. But, you know, when this started,
an inauguration is typically an American event, and it`s the only time in
the world that you have this passage of partisan power that transpires in
the snap of a finger. Tomorrow at 11:27, when the president-elect, his
wife and his family are sitting on the west end of the mall looking at us.
And that power of the free world transcends with respect from what is a
great man doing his best to do a great job to the anticipation of a new
president as the global leader of the world, in three minutes, you have
reflection and you have expectation. And every president puts their own
fingerprint on an inauguration. And this president-elect was very specific
about what he wanted, and what he wanted was a you, he wanted it to be of
the people. And when I say, you, he meant the united you. And set in this
setting of this reflection pond that sits between three unbelievable
monuments of three of our profound leaders. And what you see are these
incredible stone – beautiful and incredible tributes that stand above us
for the purpose of reflecting, of thinking of what was it? What went
before them? But what really stands out, and you can hear it in the
silence amongst you at the moment is the mortar, not the stone, not the
granite, not the marble. It`s the thousands of lives, it`s the millions of
hopes. It`s the ten thousand aspirations of all the people, of all the
themes that went into these great men. And along the road, we`ve had 45
men that have left their footprints and their fingerprints throughout the
mortar and in the middle of this title base. So as you reflect on those
who came before us, and as you have expectations before you, I would like
you to pay a attribute to the courage to the stature, to the strength, to
the commitment, to the loyalty of a man who is going to lead you with his
footprints to diversity, to put the campaigns behind us, to united behind
one man as one America. He will show the rest of the world that we can
argue, we can fight, we can debate, and tomorrow at 11:30 we`re one country
and he will be the 45th president of the United States, Donald Trump.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Thank you.
Thank you, very much. Thank you, very much everybody. And thank you, Tom.
I would like to congratulate our incredible entertainers tonight. Toby and
Lee Greenwood, and all the great talent, it was really very special. I`ve
also have to thank our incredible military talent right here. Thank you.
Stand up, please. You guys were great. Thank you, very much. Thank you.
So this journey began 18 months ago. I had something to do with it, but
you had much more to do with it than I did. I`m the messenger. I`m just a
messenger. And we were tired – and I love you. Believe me, I love you.
We all got tired of seeing what was happening and we want a change, but we
wanted real change. And I look so forward to tomorrow. We`re going to see
something that is going to be so amazing. So many people have poured in to
Washington, D.C. This started out tonight being a small little concert,
and then we had the idea maybe we`ll do it in front of the Lincoln
Memorial. I don`t know if it`s ever been done before, but if it does it`s
very seldom. And the people came by the thousands and thousands and here
we are tonight, all the way back, all the way back.
So it`s a movement that began – it`s a movement that started and it`s a
movement like we`ve never seen anywhere in the world they say, there`s
never been a movement like this. And it`s something very, very special.
And we`re going to unify our country. And our phrase, you all know it,
half of you are wearing the hat, make America great again.
We`re going to make America great for all of our people, everybody,
everybody throughout our country. That includes the inner city. That
includes everybody. And we`re going to do a special job – and I can only
tell you that 18 months ago we never knew, a lot of people didn`t know,
some people had a feeling, a lot of people didn`t give us much of a chance,
but we understood what was happening. And that last month of the campaign,
when I travelled around to every place that you can imagine, state, after
state, after state, speech, after speech, and we had 10,000, 20,000, 30,000
people. There was never an empty seat just like tonight. We didn`t have
anybody would come together tonight. This hasn`t been done before. And
you look, it was the same way. And we all knew that last month of the
campaign, I think a lot of us knew the first week of the campaign, but that
last month of the campaign we knew that something special was happening.
And I can only tell you this, the polls started going up, up, up, but they
didn`t want to give us credit because they forget about a lot of us. On
the campaign, I called it the forgotten man and the forgotten women. Well,
you`re not forgotten anymore, that I can tell you. Not forgotten any more.
So I want to thank for great family, my incredible wife, Melania.
They`ve been so supportive, and it wasn`t easy for them, but they have been
so supportive. I want to thank you most importantly, and I promise you
that I will work so hard we`re going to get it turned around. We`re going
to bring our jobs back. We`re not going to let other countries take our
jobs any longer. We`re going to build up our great military. We`re going
to build it up. We`re going to strengthen our boarders. We`re going to do
things that haven`t been done for our country for many, many decades. It`s
going to change. I promise you, it`s going to change. So I`ll see you
And I don`t care, frankly, if it`s going to be beautiful or if it`s going
to rain like crazy, makes no difference to me. I have a feeling it`s going
to be beautiful. But I will see you tomorrow and I`m going to be cheering
you on. You`re going to cheer me on, but I`m going to be cheering you on
because what we`ve done is so special. All over the world they`re talking
about it. All over the world. And I love you folks, and we`re going to
work together. And we are going to make America great again. And I`ll
add, greater than ever before. Thank you, very much, and enjoy the
fireworks. Thank you everybody. Thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: That was the president-elect telling us tomorrow is going to
be the big day. He`s going to make America greater again. And I`m joined
by Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican from South Carolina. He`s been
listening to the speech. You`re thoughts as a teaser for tomorrow?
LINDSEY GRAHAM, U.S. SENATOR: Well, one, I thought it was good. I`ll be
the first to admit I didn`t think he could win. He defied all
expectations. He beat 17 people – 16 people in the Republican primary
including me. And he won states that Republicans haven`t won in a very
long time. And it`s exciting to see the peaceful transfer of power. But
next week, the hard work begins. I`m going to help him where I can, and
where I can`t I`ll say no.
VAN SUSTEREN: When – turn things around, what going to turn around?
GRAHAM: Well, I think the first thing we need to turn around is our
economy. I think he`s going to go full board on trying to lower taxes to
make us more internationally competitive. One of the reasons people leave
the country because of the regulatory tax burden is too great. So he can
do that with Republican help. He can change some regulation. Building a
wall that Mexico pay for it, we`ll see how that works.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you think that`s going to happen? Mexico are going to
pay for it?
GRAHAM: I don`t. But I think we do need to secure our borders, but
Democrats have a say. The senate it requires 60 votes on really big stuff.
We`re going to repeal and replace Obamacare. That will turn around
healthcare. Repealing is easy, replacing is hard. And we should listen to
President-elect Trump about replacing and repealing at the same time, not
have gaps. So there`s a lot of things we can do, like rebuilding our
military. But I hope we can get some Democratic support because we`re
going to need it.
VAN SUSTEREN: What he says is including inner cities, and that`s where my
professional career started in the inner cities. So I want to see that
happen. We`re losing the war on poverty. So what is he going to do for
these inner cities.
GRAHAM: OK. So, Jesse Jackson came by my office yesterday, unannounced.
I knew him for a long time. He`s born in Greenville, South Carolina. I
knew his mother. I knew his son very well.
VAN SUSTEREN: I worked with him at CNN.
GRAHAM: OK. So here`s the deal. We were talking about a summit, urban
reconstruction summit, that idea of repairing our roads and our bridge all
over America, but doing something with inner cities. I think appeals to a
lot of us. How do you pay for it is important. But the fact that Jesse
Jackson came by to see me, and he wants to meet the president.
VAN SUSTEREN: He wants to work with the president?
GRAHAM: He said he wants to get a summit, some big city, maybe Chicago,
where the private sector, the public sector, the president comes, cabinet
officials, and we really have a summit to reconstruct urban America. And
I`m a rural guy, so you`ve got to include us too. But count me in. That`s
a pretty darn good start I think.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, Russia, let me talk about them. We`ve got to
talk Russia, the president seems to have – wants a more working
relationship to say bluntly or gently with Putin. And the most of the
other people think Putin is evil.
GRAHAM: So here`s what I would say, that I am going to do everything I can
as Senator Graham from South Carolina to pass additional sanctions beyond
what President Obama placed on Russia in their interference in our
VAN SUSTEREN: It sounds like President Trump doesn`t want that.
GRAHAM: Well, we`ll see how that works. I wish he would embrace it.
There`s a lot of vote in this building right over here to punish Russia.
They hacked into the DNC. This time it could be another country hacking
into the Republican Party next time. An attack on one party is an attack
on all of us.
VAN SUSTEREN: I know this hacking – I hate the hacking, but we hacked
into Angela Merkel. We hacked into the president of – we didn`t?
GRAHAM: We haven`t done this. This is an attack on our democracy.
VAN SUSTEREN: Don`t get me wrong, I think that`s horrible. I think
hacking is horrible.
GRAHAM: I hope Trump will jump onboard because if want a new relationship
with Russia you better start from a position of strength. Russia is not
going to change until Putin is made to change. And I`m working for a
better relationship only after they change.
VAN SUSTEREN: And I should say just in case anyone is looking at the
screen that is obviously the soon to be first family and extended family.
And we`re listening to the.
GRAHAM: Beautiful family.
VAN SUSTEREN: . U.S. military singing. Fireworks.
GRAHAM: I wish Democrats will come to the inauguration. I mean, this is -
- how many people in the world would die to have a moment like this where
you can come and celebrate the transfer of power without a shot being
VAN SUSTEREN: And good for Hillary Clinton, President Clinton and the
Obama`s, they are going to be there – it`s good for them.
GRAHAM: And, you know, Hillary gave a sound good advice, give him a
chance. I`m will give him the chance, but I`m not going to give him a pass
when it comes to things I believe it. If he wants to forgive Russia for
what they did to our democracy or trying to do, and I will not be in the
forgiving mood. Forgiveness is weakness when it comes to Putin.
VAN SUSTEREN: Look at the spectacular fireworks.
GRAHAM: It`s very pretty, isn`t it?
VAN SUSTEREN: It is.
GRAHAM: Beautiful family.
VAN SUSTEREN: It is. And who would have guess that though.
GRAHAM: Let me say this about President Obama, I talk to him today. One
of the things I can say without hesitation, he and the first lady and the
first family represented in us in an incredibly classy way and I appreciate
VAN SUSTEREN: A lot of people may not agree with him, but you can`t deny
the fact that they were – they acted with great dignity for the last eight
GRAHAM: Absolutely, grace and poised.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, North Korea, what about President Donald Trump in
GRAHAM: I think it`s a big challenge – they`re going to restart some of
these reactors. Russia is not the biggest threat in my view to the United
States. It`s a big threat to world order. The Iranians with a nuclear
weapon and a missile to deliver it will put the whole Middle East to a
nuclear arms race. The one place he`s got to watch early is North Korea.
You cannot allow Kim Jong-un to develop intercontinental ballistic missile
that can deliver warhead to America. One of his biggest challenges will be
to back up the statement he made on twitter, not going to happen. And if
you don`t have military option on the table it will happen.
VAN SUSTEREN: Everyone assumes we`re going to let North Korea become a
nuclear power, they have at least five successful tests.
GRAHAM: Well, they already have nuclear weapons, they don`t have the
ability to deliver it to the shores of the United States and to many of our
VAN SUSTEREN: But we let them get that far.
GRAHAM: Well, you can blame everybody, Republicans, Democrats, for that
mistake. But now it`s up to Trump. The nightmare of all nightmares is we
have a crazy man in North Korea with a missile that could hit our shores.
The test of President Trump is going to be early on – what to do about
North Korea. And here`s what I predict, if he let North Korean know
through China, that if you cross certain red lines then your programs is at
risk, your regime is at risk, they would stop. If you don`t give that
clear signal then they`re going to keep going.
VAN SUSTEREN: And with regard to Iran, your thought on that deal with
Iran, still (INAUDIBLE)
GRAHAM: I think it`s a bad deal. Here`s what a good deal looks like, let
Iran have a nuclear power plant, let all the Arabs who wants one have a
nuclear power plant, but not enriched and reprocess uranium. There`re 15
nations who have nuclear power that don`t enriched and reprocess uranium.
If you allow the Ayatollah the ability to enriched and reprocess uranium,
he will one day make a bomb. Here`s what I would say, give every Arab
nation who wants a nuclear power plant a chance to have one. Give the
Ayatollah a nuclear power plant but do not let him enriched and reprocess
uranium. And the Russian, the Chinese, and the Americans should join
together and provide nuclear power to the Mid-East but control the fuel
VAN SUSTEREN: And, of course, now we are looking at the Trump family,
they`re looking at the statue.
GRAHAM: Huge family.
VAN SUSTEREN: He has a huge family.
GRAHAM: Can you imagine how he must feel.
VAN SUSTEREN: I can`t imagine.
GRAHAM: I mean, you know, I didn`t get very far. I glad I`ve tried, but
to actually have won. I can only imagine the responsibility, the sense of
pride. I mean, he came from literary nowhere in terms of a political
career and won the brass ring, and we all should help him.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, MSNBC`s Cal Perry is at the Lincoln Memorial, the site
of that concert, walking with the president-elect. Cal, what it`s like
CAL PERRY, MSNBC: I`ll tell you, Greta, the crowd in many ways is the same
kind of crowd you would see at a campaign rally, which is why I think we
heard very similar sentiment from the president-elect. Tomorrow it would
be interesting to see what kind of speech he gives if we have a more
unifying speech. That`s the big question here on everyone`s mind,
certainly, the folks who came to town who did not necessarily support
Donald Trump through and through. Of course, listen, the government
structure that we have here, he`s going to have to expand not constrict,
he`s got too bring more people into the coalition. We`re talking about a
man with a 39 percent approval rating coming in to office, that is
historically low, Greta.
VAN SUSTEREN: I there any crowd count because it`s hard to tell remotely.
PERRY: You know, I think it`s somewhere between 10 and 15,000. On the
pamphlet that we were handed by the transition team, they said they were
expecting up to 200,000 people. That is certainly not what we were seeing
here, but a pretty big crowd. I think one of the things that happened is
along the national mall in here Washington, D.C. all the street had been
close all day. And you have people walking around, taking photo, taking
selfies of all the monuments, and then you have this concert, and that drew
a lot of folks down Constitutional Avenue. And, listen, you know this,
this is a beautiful part of the of the town, you have the World War II
Memorial, you have the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, we have that very moving
ceremony at Arlington Cemetery before this concert. So it really is
hallowed ground, and I think we`re seeing a mix of Trump`s supporters,
tourist, and folks who are just here for the inauguration.
VAN SUSTEREN: Cal, thank you very much. And also, thanks very much to
Senator Lindsey Graham. Thank you both. Mike Allen is the co-founder of
AXIOS, and Karen Tumulty, national political reporter for the Washington
Post. Both just interviewed the president-elect. Mike, first to you, your
thoughts after interviewing him.
MIKE ALLEN, CO-FOUNDER OF AXIOS: Well, Greta, first, thanks for coming to
our launch party last night of axious.com, flip the switch yesterday, and
we appreciate that very much. When we saw the president-elect at Trump
Tower, and what we saw was someone who for the first time was really
feeling the weight of what`s coming. We`re used to him being this sort of
cocky, sunny presence, a little bit what we saw there. But he talked about
how he just had some of his intelligence briefings. He talked about how he
just talked with President Obama about some of what`s coming, and he
realized like what the job entails, so many decisions that only a president
can make. And he started ware on that. We talked to people who spent all
day with him and they said that they can imagine him walking off that stage
after he takes the oath tomorrow, and having that a-ha moment as he signed
those first paper. Order number one for the new president, re-authorizing
the National Security Council. It`s a funny like administerial tradition.
That`s what he will do. That`s when the job really begins.
VAN SUSTEREN: Karen, we`ve seen a lot of Donald Trump in the last 18
months or so, where did he came up with this make America great, and what`s
the origin of this?
KAREN TUMULTU, THE WASHINGTON POST: Well, I was struck by the fact that I
found the paperwork in the federal government offices, he has actually
trademarked the phrase, make America great again, only six days after the
2012 election. So I asked him about it in my interview, and he said he
actually thought of it the day after Mitt Romney lost in 2012. Donald
Trump, not only decided to run, but he thought about how he was going to
run. And typically, for Donald Trump the first thing he decided to do was
brand it. So he decided to trademark the phrase, went through several
phrases in his head, and finally make America great again had the right
ring. The really funny thing – I hit him in a very different mood than
you did, Mike, because in the middle of our interview he suddenly thinks of
the slogan he wants for reelection in 2020. And while I was talking to him
he summons in his lawyer to trademark that one with and without an
VAN SUSTEREN: Senator Graham, when was the last time you spoke to him?
GRAHAM: It`s been a while. I`ll see him tomorrow. I`m in the phonebook,
call me when you need me. I`ve spoke.
VAN SUSTEREN: He`s got your number.
VAN SUSTEREN: You`re not going to give me your new phone number are you?
GRAHAM: We`ll see how he does for about six months. But Pence was in the
office couple of days ago. You know, listen, we all want to help. I was
part of the all opposition, but it meant a lot of me that President Obama
would called me today and say, listen, we have our differences, appreciate
the effort to work together where we can, and that meant a lot to me. So,
you know, I`m kind of a traditional guy. I want to help my president. I
want to help my party. But part of my job is going to be to stand up for
what I believe when it comes to foreign policy. I`ve spent a lot of time
thinking about this stuff. I think he`s right about North Korea. I think
he`s right about Iran. I think he`s got Russia completely backwards, and
we`ll see what happens.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you think that he has a sense of what it`s like to work
with Capitol Hill, because working with Capitol Hill is like herding cats
in many ways.
GRAHAM: They make the cat herding looks easy. We`ve got to get 60 votes,
and you`ve got everybody over there wanting to get reelected, Republicans
are worried about primaries, Democrats are worried about how nasty I need
to be in keeping having a primary. And he`s got a skillsets of bringing –
he`s really a fun guy to be around. I would advise him do to something
Obama didn`t do a very good job of, bringing people down to the White House
and get to know them. Bring their kids, bring their grandkids, show them
around the building. Actually, he has a skillset of bringing people
together on an individual basis. Stop tweeting and start talking.
ALLEN: Greta, though, in center, you hear people in the tweeting, you`re
talking about the digital bully pulpit and what potentially a powerful tool
that is for him calling in a president as senator as you suggest with so
little was done in this administration, calling a senator, calling a
member, and you can threaten them, you can say if you`re not going to vote
for my infrastructure package I`m going to tweet that you`re trying to keep
me from trying make America great again, explanation more bark, or I can
tweet that you are helping me make America great again. He`s so conscious
of the metric of this. I mean, he`s just pass 20 million twitter
followers. It`s like the only person with more than you do, Greta. And he
was talking how he has 80 million across all his social platforms.
GRAHAM: Karen, make a point about this, when you`re 40 percent you`re not
going to threaten a lot of people. The best way to be a strong president
is to have the people behind you. President-elect is not being viewed very
well. I think President Trump needs to change his image before it gets
worst. And tweeting and threatening – people on the spot he will respond,
I think to being conjoined in to being smooth and not threaten.
ALLEN: I mean, to Karen point out that he`s been the rare president-elect
to go down during his transition, right, 40 percent when – even after Bush
v Gore. President George W. Bush was in a much better position.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why did he go down?
TUMULTY: Why did he go down I think because of – people are ready to take
a breath and give an incoming president a chance.
VAN SUSTEREN: So you think his numbers would go up a little?
TUMULTY: Yes. But his rhetoric has been divisive. He`s sort of continued
it – I think people were looking for him to make the transition for
campaign mode to presidential mode, he has not done that – has not done
that yet. And tomorrow we will see – tomorrow is he`s big opportunity to
do that. Those numbers could come up very quickly.
ALLEN: It could be hard. And you talk to the people who are around the
president-elect all the time, and what they say is that what he`s been
doing has been working for him. And so he`s very reluctant to change or
unwilling to change, and it`s tough to answer him when he says, look, I`ve
made it to here. I`ve reminded of an expression that President George W.
Bush had when some smarty-pants, young person, will try and tell him what
to do what to do, he will always say if you`re so smart, how come I`m the
president and Trump is doing that a little bit.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, MSNBC HOST: We are going to get executive orders,
probably very quickly.
LINDSEY GRAHAM, U.S. SENATOR: Well, you know, he has made a lot of
promises like most presidents do. Now, reality sets in. There are 800,000
young kids, some middle aged people, who came out of the shadows at
President Obama`s question, the executive order. Trump said it was legal,
I agree. But if you repeal the executive order and throw these kids back
into the shadows, his numbers are going to drop even more. I have a bill
to give him a three-year legal status until we fix immigration.
VAN SUSTEREN: And we should point out, what Durbin needs, what the other
side of the aisle, a bipartisan bill.
VAN SUSTEREN: Every time the two sides of the.
GRAHAM: We are going to tell the young ladies, what are you going to do
with me and my daughter, you`re not going anywhere. Nobody wants a crook.
But President Obama brought these people out of the shadows. They raised
their hands here. If the Republican says you`re back in the shadows, it
would be a disaster. So, reality is going to set it. Building a wall and
getting Mexico to pay for it is probably not going to happen. You`re going
to need 60 votes on the big stuff. And let me tell you about Donald Trump,
he is incredibly charming. And he is nobody`s fool. So tweeting and
pressure makes some sense but what has been unused for the last eight years
is the power the office itself. The worst critic of any president is – it
is like butter when they`re in the Oval Office at least for a period of
time. I have been there.
KAREN TUMULTY, WASHINGTON POST: I think it`s been interesting to see him
lay down a few markers. For instance he says healthcare repeal and replace
has to happen at the same time. He wants the drug companies to actually
engage in negotiation for what kinds of prices.
VAN SUSTEREN: I mean, how can anybody oppose getting drug low prices with
competition except if you`re a lobbyist or a big farmer?
TUMULTY: But pharma has rolled everybody who`s tried to do it in the past.
VAN SUSTEREN: . by donations to parties?
TUMULTY: . lobby up on Capitol Hill.
VAN SUSTEREN: They are powerful because they have money. We say the word
powerful, but what it really means is money.
TUMULTY: And especially the biotech industry, they are in everybody`s
ALLEN: Greta, I can tell you somebody disagrees with this idea. And
somebody called speaker of the how Paul Ryan.
ALLEN: I talked to Speaker Ryan from his district office and he said
there`s actually more of a story to tell about how the current program
works, that by having a big amount of business you can get big discounts.
And he said some people just don`t know that yet. They said, you mean like
the president-elect. So he says there`s a better story to tell there. So
the issue is more debatable than the way it`s been phrased.
VAN SUSTEREN: In what way?
ALLEN: By having big group bulk business sometimes you can drive up better
bargain that way. So he is going to debate this and president-elect
Trump`s style has not been to not wait for the substance of the policy to
go ahead and take a position. We asked him the other day, how he likes to
be briefed. And he said he likes bullet points. He said I don`t need the
200 pages. So he needs somebody to give him those bullet points before he
goes in for a decision.
TUMULTY: That`s because his instincts on everything, I mean, he is real
estate developer. His instincts are always let`s move to the deal, let`s
move to the deal.
VAN SUSTEREN: Senator Graham, thank you.
GRAHAM: Can I give you an example? The F18 can`t replace the F35. It`s a
non-stealth aircraft. You can lower the cost of the F35 and he is trying
to do that. But you can`t replace it with the F18. That stuff really does
matter. But the fact he is trying to drive down cost is a good thing.
VAN SUSTEREN: Senator Graham, Mike Allen, Karen Tumulty, thank you all
ALLEN: Congratulations, Greta.
GRAHAM: Thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you very much. I hope you come back.
Earlier today, I had a chance to talk to the incoming White House Press
Secretary, Sean Spicer, the man who responsible for explaining Trump`s
agenda to the press.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Sean Spicer is the incoming White House Press Secretary.
Nice to see you, Sean.
SEAN SPICER, INCOMING WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Thanks for having me.
VAN SUSTEREN: So you have an idea or anything like that? Do you have a
SPICER: We`re getting there. We`re getting there.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you have any keys to get in?
SPICER: I know where it`s located.
SPICER: I thought so. I had to drive by once to get the right one. Very
exciting, very humbling. And to be a part of this administration and to
help the president-elect talk about the agenda that he is bringing forward
is truly an honor.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you have an idea what your day is going to be like?
SPICER: I think so.
VAN SUSTEREN: Tell me.
SPICER: I will tell you this. Over the last few months, it`s a constant
sense of excite. No day is going to be alike. The enthusiasm and
intensity that President Donald Trump is going to bring to this office is
amazing. He is restless, he is eager for change, and to make the country
great again, you have seen this through this phase that the transition
phase, trying to pick up a phone, call companies to keep jobs here, to
lower the cost of the F35 and Boeing. He is going to use every hour of
VAN SUSTEREN: You see unusual extreme of people going to Trump Tower, even
Kanye was there.
SPICER: You bet. But I think look, he has got entertainers, world class
business leaders, academics, people who were successful in the military,
government, he is looking for the best and brightest throughout this
country. No matter the field, to bring them together and say no matter an
idea or thought on how to make the country better, how to improve people`s
lives, he wants you part of this movement.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Well, he has a little bit of a spat with the
VAN SUSTEREN: How will he repair that?
SPICER: I think there is a difference, just to be clear. I think there is
a difference between some of the leadership of the intelligence community
and the respect that he has for the men and women who day to day go in to
make sure the country is protected by the sources and methods they use to
gather and use intelligence to our nation`s benefit. So there`s a
difference. He has tremendous amount of respect for those men and women
who toil in large parts behind in secret and in darkness to help our
country without necessarily getting the accolades they deserves.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Day one, he has said he is going to issue some
executive orders. Give me a tease. What`s he going to do?
SPICER: Well, if you thought about what his campaign on immigration,
repealing Obamacare, transportation, there are a lot of issues that have
been forefront to him that`s he going to focus on. He has talked about
trade and getting out TPP and renegotiating NAFTA. Those are at the
forefront of his agenda.
VAN SUSTEREN: That`s over the course of the 100 days, assuming nothing
SPICER: I think there is a lot that`s going to happen right out of the
VAN SUSTEREN: Day one, like what?
SPICER: I think over the course, you`re going to see lobby ban put in
place. I think people who want to serve in the Trump administration are
serving this country, and not themselves, by instituting a five-year ban
for people who lead for lobbying, and a lifetime ban for them lobbying for
a foreign government. That`s a positive step forward and it sends a true
signal that this administration is about putting the American people first
and getting results for them, not putting themselves first.
VAN SUSTEREN: Will we have an executive order likely to see one on the
first day with regard to immigration?
SPICER: I think in the first couple of days, absolutely.
SPICER: But I think part of this right now, Greta, is there are a lot of
stuff going on. And what the president-elect is doing with his team is
trying to figure out how do we sequence some of these things. He has got a
lot of things on the cue on immigration, on healthcare, on transportation,
keeping America safe in terms of attacking ISIS, making sure that we have
the cyber security that we need, all of those areas and then creating jobs.
How do we do things to spur economic and job creation? And he is sitting
down with the team right now and sort of trying to figure out what the
sequencing is to get that done. We don`t want people to lose sight of some
of the accomplishments that he is going to have in first couple of days.
VAN SUSTEREN: Explain this to me because I was watching the nominee for
secretary of energy, Governor Rick Perry. And of course, we also heard
that they want to abolish energy department. Well, now, he is apparently
for the energy department. And I must think that the American people are
scratching their heads about that.
SPICER: I think Governor Perry is from a state that is a huge oil
producer, as well as solar, gas, oil. He understands the needs of our
nation`s energy and what we can do to tap into natural resource to provide
more energy to our people. So when it comes to understanding the energy
sector, the energy industry, and the demand that the American people have
for, he is able to uniquely.
VAN SUSTEREN: He said he doesn`t want it. He said he is going to dump it.
SPICER: I think there is a difference. I think what is committed to is
reform. He has definitely talked about the need and the focus of the
department. I think that`s why him coming in and having a very sharp focus
on how to reform the department to utilize our energy and natural resources
is still what you need. We have too many concerns about whether or not
we`re harnessing wind, solar and other natural resources to our country`s
best interest. And it is job creation. And that`s the big thing. There`s
so many things we can do in that sector to put people back to work to give
them a living wage, we got to.
VAN SUSTEREN: Will president-elect to make commitment to sustainable to
SPICER: He has already talked about it. I think it`s not about one, it`s
about what is going to be best for this country. Where do we get our best
value from, where our natural resources within our own – we got a lot of
mineral and gas underneath our own oil that we got to start figuring out,
how do we utilize that, so that we can get off more independence on foreign
VAN SUSTEREN: Big day tomorrow, where are you going to be?
SPICER: I will be at the Capitol.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you get a good seat?
SPICER: I think have a decent seat. My job is to make sure that everyone
out here, you, your audience, and the rest of the American people know what
he is going to be doing and what his agenda is. We`re going to continue to
be very, very busy. It`s been an exciting ride. He has been very, very
enthusiastic, ready for this day to come.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, if you hate us now, you`re really going to hate us as
the time marches on, you realize that?
SPICER: No, no. We love you, guys.
VAN SUSTEREN: I have seen the tweets. I have seen the tweets from your
SPICER: We are excited to communicate this message of success to the
American people and we`re excited to have you along side, to have our
people on and to articulate what we`re doing.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You have to say this for your boss Reince
Priebus. Go, Packs, go. Can you say it?
SPICER: Go, Packs, go.
SPICER: Go, Packs, go. That`s right.
VAN SUSTEREN: We will have the discussion later. Anyway, Sean, nice to
see you. I hope you come back often.
SPICER: Thanks, Greta. Congrats on the show.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Moments ago, president-elect Trump addressing crowd at the
Lincoln Memorial, making a promise about his agenda.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT-ELECT: I promise you that I will work so
hard, we`re going to get it turned round. We`re going to bring our jobs
back. We`re not going to let other countries take our jobs any longer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Greg Abbott Republican governor from the great state of
Texas and the author of Broken but Unbowed: The Fight to Fix a Broken
America. Nice to see you, Sir.
GREG ABBOTT, TEXAS GOVERNOR: Thanks, Greta.
VAN SUSTEREN: Welcome to Washington.
ABBOTT: Good to be back.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. The president-elect says he going to build this
wall along your state board, part of it, is he?
ABBOTT: Oh, I think he is. And he is working fast toward it. It needs to
be done. We have challenges in the border. We still have more than about
a thousand people a day coming across the boarder. We need greater
VAN SUSTEREN: What I don`t understand is what the issue is. There`s so
much concentration on that southern border. And what I hear so little
about on the immigration is this, there are so many people come to United
States and overstay their visas. There are just so many more. What do we
do to combat that?
ABBOTT: It is both. Both issues need to be addressed. The one is very
easy to see, very easy to do something about. It is people who are coming
across the border. Like I`m saying, we have about a thousand coming across
the border every single day, so many into the state of Texas, which is why
we need the help that we have. You know, the state of Texas came out of
the pocket to the tune of $800 million to do our own border security.
That`s not our jobs. That`s the federal government`s responsibility.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Travis County Sally Hernandez is expected to
announce she would no longer comply with ICE detainers on illegal
immigrants which could cost her county $1.8 million in state grants. You
then tweeted back that you`re going to up ante to her?
ABBOTT: I am because the reason why she is losing money, I issued this
noticed, two sheriffs of law enforcement they don`t comply, they would be
losing (inaudible). In addition to that, I have made a series policy
proposal for this legislative session that we`re going to ban sanctuary
cities in Texas with penalties for officers and cities that don`t comply
with the ban
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Who is going to pay for the wall? Do you
believe that Mexico is going to pay for that wall?
ABBOTT: The way that the president-elect talks about it is that it could
be through fees on remittances, it could be other fees attached to through
trade. It would probably be paid through Mexican trade, but it will not be
the taxpayers to pay for it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Are you certain of that?
ABBOTT: I feel confident about it.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Are you going to be there tomorrow?
ABBOTT: I will be there.
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you want to hear from the president-elect?
ABBOTT: I want to her him crystallize his vision, of what he is going to
do for America and demonstrate his commitment to get it done quickly. We
have urgent needs that need to be taken care of like what he was talking
about jobs. It needs to be done right now.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. We should probably tell the viewers that he
practically threatening when you came to the set today because the Green
Bay Packers beating the Dallas Cowboys. I think the viewers ought to know
that you threatened me.
ABBOTT: I lay it in your feet. It`s your fault. The Cowboys should have
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You`re going to cheer to Packers this Sunday
ABBOTT: It`s hard.
VAN SUSTEREN: It`s hard, indeed, it is. Anyway, you`re a good sport,
Governor. Nice to see you, Sir.
ABBOTT: Thank you, Greta.
VAN SUSTEREN: Still ahead, more than 60 Democrats they will boycott the
inauguration. I`ll talk to Democratic governor Dan Malloy, who will be
there tomorrow. And I will talk to Reverend Franklin Graham offering the
invocation at the inauguration.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I don`t care frankly if it`s going to be beautiful or if it`s going
to rain like crazy, makes no difference to me. I have feeling it`s going
to be beautiful, but I`ll see you tomorrow. And I`m going to be cheering
you on. You`re going to cheer me on. But I`m going to be cheering you on
because what we`ve done is so special.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: President-elect Trump just moments ago less, than 18 hours
before he takes the oath of office, the list of Democrats boycotting the
inauguration, well, it is growing by the hour. But some on the left say
they will still be there at the U.S. Capitol to see the 45th president take
the oath. Dan Malloy, governor of the great state of Connecticut, chairman
of the Democratic Governors` Association. He joins me. Nice to see you,
DAN MALLOY, CONNECTICUT GOVERNOR: Good to be here. And congratulations on
this great show.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you very much, Sir. All right. Your going, why?
MALLOY: Well, because I think somebody has to witness. There is a day to
be loyal. There is a day to be the opposition. And I`m going to be the
opposition. I think when I examine so many of the positions that the
president-elect, soon-to-be president is taking, I`m on the other side.
And particularly on things like ACA or Obamacare, where he basically wants
to take healthcare from folks. Now, I understand Republicans are having
this internal debate, do we take it away first, that`s the Ryan plan, and I
think it has the more solid support amongst Republicans. If the
president`s right and he has plan that replaces it, I don`t understand why
we`re repealing the system that seems to be working so very well, in my
state in particular, where the uninsured rate is down 18.12 percent, it
used to be 12 and 13 percent.
VAN SUSTEREN: I think some people say that their premiums are going up so
high, that they can`t afford it because the copay is just so high. You
know, I think obviously people love the fact that in your preexisting
illness, that you`re nothing going to be excluded. But I think the cost is
hidden in the pockets of people.
MALLOY: The average increase across the country is 9 percent. I have been
in government for a long time.
VAN SUSTEREN: Most incomes are not going up 9 percent.
MALLOY: I have been in the government a long time. I used to serve on
something called the Board of Finance, my hometown on Stamford,
Connecticut. During those years that I was serving, we routinely saw
premium rates go up 17 to 24 percent. I can tell you that Obamacare is
bending the curve. I can tell you that in years two and three of
Obamacare, we are seeing less and less money going out the door per person
than we are seeing in year one. I can tell you that we are getting people
who are getting services and getting treated and catching disease much
earlier than ever before and that saves money.
VAN SUSTEREN: That`s key.
MALLOY: Don`t get your healthcare in the emergency room, where it`s not as
good and where it is far more expensive.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Overall, in terms of Democratic governors, what
are they going to do to oppose the president?
MALLOY: Well, I think you know it`s an issue by issue case. I think every
Democratic president opposes the idea that you`re going to do away with
Obamacare. And this idea that you are going to replace – if you have a
plan to replace, let`s put the plan on the table.
VAN SUSTEREN: So if he has a good plan, you`re not opposed to that. There
is just none on the table that you see.
MALLOY: Correct. And the Republicans have had six years to put one on the
table, and they have never done it.
VAN SUSTEREN: They say they have a lot of plans, but I must admit that
whatever plan they have is unclear to me. I have to admit that. You know,
I haven`t seen that. But I do know so many Americans are terrified of this
whole business of health insurance for a good reason. They don`t know what
to aspect. And they don`t know if the cost will go up and people get sick,
and it is very distressing.
MALLOY: Allow me to make one other point.
VAN SUSTEREN: OK.
MALLOY: Connecticut is the home to a large insurance carriers and health
insurance in particular. If you repeal and you don`t immediately replace
with a comparable system then you`re going to destroy the market place, and
32 million people will have no health insurance.
VAN SUSTEREN: Not only that though, if you repeal without replacing it,
and while we wait for replacement, all these people are terrified in the
interim or scared. I don`t like scaring the American people.
MALLOY: But companies will not write that insurance it without a plan
back-up. If that`s not existent, you will not have these companies write
policies next year.
VAN SUSTEREN: I just don`t want the gap to scare the American people.
MALLOY: Final point, they got to come to the market place, state after
state, to get approval come June.
VAN SUSTEREN: Governor, nice to see you.
MALLOY: Thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: Up next, I talked to Reverend Franklin Graham who is giving
a reading at tomorrow`s inauguration.
VAN SUSTEREN: About 800,000 people are expected at tomorrow`s
inauguration, we`ll see a diverse group of religious leaders taking part,
among them, the first woman to deliver a prayer on inauguration day, and a
bishop who is a long time Democrat. Reverend Franklin Graham will do a
reading. He is the head of Samaritan`s Purse, a relief group that I have
worked with and that recently build a field hospital in Iraq. Nice to see
you, Reverend Graham.
REVEREND FRANKLIN GRAHAM, SAMARITAN`S PURSE: Good to see you, Greta.
VAN SUSTEREN: OK. So tell me what you`re doing tomorrow.
GRAHAM: I`m reading a scripture, the benediction. And it`s a reading from
the New Testament. It`s a great honor to be asked and be a part of this.
This is my third time. George W. Bush asked me to pray at his
inauguration. So it is a great privilege.
VAN SUSTEREN: I take it you got to choose what you`re going to read,
GRAHAM: I did, yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: And you even had a rehearsal?
GRAHAM: A rehearsal today. Yes, that was fun.
VAN SUSTEREN: Who was there at the rehearsal? Everybody?
GRAHAM: Not everybody. One person was absent. I`m not go to say who.
But the rest of us were there practicing.
VAN SUSTEREN: A no-show?
GRAHAM: I think he came later.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you get nervous doing this?
GRAHAM: Of course. Always. You get nervous. I want to honor the Lord
Jesus Christ in everything I do. And when you stand before that many
people, I don`t want to say something that would draw attention to myself.
I want people to be able to see the Lord Jesus Christ who died for my sins.
And I want to honor him.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You went around the country urging them to vote,
but you didn`t urge them to vote for Donald Trump.
GRAHAM: No. I did not support any candidates. I`m an independent. I thin
it is called unaffiliated. But I encourage people to pray before they
vote. But pray before you vote and ask God who to vote for.
VAN SUSTEREN: And you hit all fifty states.
GRAHAM: All fifty states. And I think about the next three years to do it
again. I went back to each state and do multiple cities in a state, again
asking people to pry and telling people about the Lord Jesus Christ.
VAN SUSTEREN: Have you talked to Trump in the last few days?
GRAHAM: In the last few days, no. The last time we were together was in
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Let me turn to your trip last week. You went to
Iraq. It is seems to be – so we forgot the story about Iraq. You built a
field hospital over there.
GRAHAM: Right outside a Mosul. And your husband John travelled with me.
And that was a lot of fun having him on the trip. We went to see the
hospital. It is a trauma hospital, Greta. People get blown up, they`re
bleeding, they`re dying, and they come into our hospital, they are operated
on. We have doctors, and nurse, about 80 in this facility. It is just 11
miles outside the Mosul. And so the ambulances are coming throughout the
day with those that are wounded. And our doctors and nurses are there, and
it`s a great ministry to be able to be a part of it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Where do you get these doctors and nurses going to Iraq?
GRAHAM: They come from all over the United States, Greta, incredible group
of men and women who do this because of their love for God and the gospel
of Jesus Christ is on their lives
VAN SUSTEREN: So you build this hospital. Where is this hospital from?
GRAHAM: It`s a mobile hospital that`s held up air pumps. So it`s packed in
boxes, and you set it up, and you hook it up, it inflates, it`s heated, it
is air conditioned, all the conduit for the electricity, the suction,
everything that you need is in the walls of this field hospital, this tent.
It`s a great system, same thing basically with what the U.S. military uses.
VAN SUSTEREN: I want to put up a picture up there that I got sent today
from you. It`s incredible. There it is. Tell me what this picture is.
GRAHAM: There are generators, Greta. If you pull up the cord, it blows
up. Take the lid off.
VAN SUSTEREN: Booby traps.
GRAHAM: Booby traps.
VAN SUSTEREN: Where are they from?
GRAHAM: These are people`s home that the Iraq and military found in homes.
There`s a vacuum cleaner, there is a fire extinguisher. All of these have
VAN SUSTEREN: So what happens is ISIS goes in and rigs these homes.
GRAHAM: When they chase the people about two years ago, ISIS had two
years, they go from home to home, and plant bombs at everybody`s home. So
when a woman comes back to her home and it looks nice and we can move back
in, she takes the lid off in one of her pots, and it blows up in her face.
VAN SUSTEREN: And of course, there are a lot of people that you see in the
GRAHAM: We do. We see a lot of women and a lot of children, Greta. And a
lot of them are shot in the back as they are running away from the battle.
ISIS targets women and children and shoots them.
VAN SUSTEREN: It`s a story that just doesn`t – the fatigue, we don`t have
a lot of media over there, talking about it. So congratulations to
Samaritan`s Purse and also these men and women out there helping these
GRAHAM: Great team, Greta. I admire them so much.
VAN SUSTEREN: I know, I have met them. I have seen these volunteers
working out there, working at these field hospitals, risking their lives.
You got a big wall around it, too.
VAN SUSTEREN: Anyway, Reverend Graham, good luck tomorrow. I hope you`re
not too nervous. Thank you.
And thanks for watching. We`ll see you tomorrow night, right here at 6
p.m. Eastern. If you can`t watch live, set your DVR. And follow me on
Twitter @Greta. And of course, check out my Facebook page. You will see a
lot of behind the scene videos and much more.
Hardball with Chris Matthews starts very soon. But take a look at that,
that is the Lincoln Memorial where the big event was just a short time ago,
where the president-elect was at the big concert because he was getting
ready to – for tomorrow. There`s the U.S. Capitol Hill. That`s where
it`s all going to be tomorrow. Isn`t it beautiful? It`s actually
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
Copy: Content and programming copyright 2017 MSNBC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Copyright 2017 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by
United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed,
transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written
permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark,
copyright or other notice from copies of the content.