For the Record with Greta, Transcript 4/18/2017
Show: FOR THE RECORD
Date: April 18, 2017
Guest: Kasie Hunt, George Will, Howard Dean, Susan Ferrechio, John Nichols, Alan Dershowitz, Eliza Collins, Lynn Sweet, Daniel Lippman, Mark Zuckerberg, David Kirkpatrick
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOR THE RECORD HOST: Chuck, thank you. And we begin
tonight with an update on former President George H.W. Bush. President
Bush hospitalized tonight in Houston, his spokesperson says President Bush
will be OK, and was admitted as a precaution. The 41st president was in
the hospital for two weeks in January, treated for phenomena. After his
recovery he did the coin toss at this year`s Super Bowl in Houston. And
just last week he got a visit from his old friend, President Clinton who
said they talked about kids, grand kids, old times and new times, and even
socks. We will be monitoring the story. Of course, we wish President Bush
And tonight, Democrats all fired up, but is it enough to flip a red seat in
Georgia? This could be a new measure of how much Democrats have gotten
energized by opposing President Trump. Polls close in less than an hour in
the Georgia special election to replace HSS secretary Tom Price in
congress. And right now, young Democrat John Ossoff leading in the polls
but there is a catch. He needs to get 50 percent of the vote to avoid a
June 20 runoff. Ossoff has taken direct aim at President Trump, and now
the president is playing defense.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Hello, this is
President Donald Trump. Liberal Democrats from outside of Georgia are
spending millions and millions of dollars trying to take your Republican
congressional seat away from you. Don`t let them do it. Only you can stop
the super liberal Democrats and Nancy Pelosi`s group, and in particular,
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: And late today, the president taking to twitter and going
after Ossoff, tweeting, just learned that John Ossoff who is running for
congress in Georgia doesn`t even live in the district. Republicans, get
out and vote. Now, that was not President Trump`s only tweet today. He
also tweeted that Ossoff is a disaster and said his positions were very
bad. But it is not just Georgia. Democrats outside of Georgia are also
speaking out against the president. Today, voters confronting Iowa
Republican senator Joni Ernst with their frustration and in some cases the
Republican Iowa senator also criticized President Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: I would like to know how you can support a man that
treats women the way Donald Trump does.
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: And he treats disabled people poorly as well.
JONI ERNST, U.S. SENATOR: Would you say there are character flaws? I think
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: It`s more than character flaws.
ERNST: Well, and I think that we have a president that has a number of
flaws. I support a majority of the policies versus the actual person. But
I dee cry, you know, I would de cry, any time a person is ugly towards
another person, I don`t think that`s appropriate.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Later, Senator Ernst also agreed the president should spend
more time in Washington.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: What`s your feelings on that? And the president
spending weekends in Florida costing us 3 million plus for – in 100 days.
ERNST: You bet. With the trips to Florida, I do wish that he would spend
more time in Washington, D.C. That`s what we have the White House for.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Senator Ernst`s comments coming after other Republicans got
hammered for defending the president.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: As far as I`m aware, the president says he`s still
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: If you don`t, I think it`s time to repeal and replace
you in 2020.
UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: Will you commit to the women and to the people of
Nevada that you will protect the funding at the federal level?
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: At the federal level?
UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, we`ll continue. We`ll continue to look at this
issue. We`ll continue to look at this issue.
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: As a fiscal conservative, what is your position on all
the weekend trips that the president makes down to Mar-a-Lago?
UNINDENTIFIED MALE: With regard to presidents and what they do on the
weekend, I`m not going to criticize presidents.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: With me from Atlanta, NBC`s Kasie Hunt. Kasie?
KASIE HUNT, NBC NEWS: Greta, good evening. We`re here at the John Ossoff
campaign event. You could see it has yet to get underway, but they are
preparing it seems to throw a party here. And the question, of course,
whether or not he is going to crack that all-important 50 percent threshold
to take this seat outright. This, of course, was Tom Price`s seat, the HHS
secretary. And Ossoff has become something of a vessel for all of that
Democratic anger that you just showed in those town halls. The money has
been pouring in for Ossoff from across the country. Most of these
donations are coming from online fund-raising. They`re smaller donations,
$8.3 million, an incredible amount for a single house race. But, of
course, this is still a tough district really for any Democrat. Typically,
Republicans win here by 20 or so points. That`s the margin that Tom Price
had when he ran for reelection back in 2016. So, of course, the question,
if he doesn`t crack that threshold, can he sustain in the runoff he would
face then one Republican opponent. From what I can tell talking to both
Republicans and Democrats, they all believe that it`s going to be much
harder for him to beat one Republican in that runoff. But at the same
time, I think Democrats have already taken this as a sign of growing
enthusiasm and, of course, I think the kind of long-shot hope right now
that they think they could potentially pull off if Ossoff has a good day
showing is potentially putting the house in play in 2018. Greta?
VAN SUSTEREN: Kasie, thank you. With me George Will, Pulitzer Prize
winning columnist from the Washington Post, and former Vermont governor and
former chair of the DNC, Howard Dean. Governor, first to you, Democrats,
obviously, feeling energized by this but they have to be really energized,
they`ve got to get 50 percent.
HOWARD DEAN, FORMER GOVERNOR OF VERMONT: I think – they need to get 50
percent. It`s going to be much easier – it`s the best way we could win.
We do have a shot if he doesn`t get 50 percent. I think they`re probably
going to nominate Karen Handel who`s already lost two statewide primaries
in the Republican Party. But, nonetheless, tonight getting 50 is a big
deal. They`ve got to get the turnout and I think they will.
VAN SUSTEREN: George, this is – you know, all eyes are on this race. But
this is one race tonight and it is going to either fuel the Democrats a lot
for the June 20th, maybe. But big picture, how important is this?
GEORGE WILL, THE WASHINGTON POST: It`s important. First of all, as a
measure of intensity on the Democratic side and what kind of candidate
generates that intensity. I don`t know if Howard Dean would say Mr. Ossoff
– Howard Dean said of Howard Dean, which is that Ossoff represents the
Democratic wing of the Democratic Party. That he`s a true believer. He
doesn`t strike me as that way. He strikes me as someone who has
accommodated himself to an essentially conservative district. But this is
really important to me because it will be some measure of how rapidly
Georgia is becoming a purple state. Donald Trump carried Ohio with 8.1
percent points, carried Iowa by 9.4. He carried Georgia only by 5.1. So,
and if Georgia becomes a purple state it will be because the Republicans
begin losing voters in exactly this kind of district.
VAN SUSTEREN: And, of course, Price is reported as Kasie – as I read, 24
percent was what Price won by.
DEAN: Yeah, but it`s a different race when you have an incumbent that`s
been there a long time.
VAN SUSTEREN: Still 12 points, 12 percent.
DEAN: No, I think that`s right. But people do tend to vote not by party,
even in conservative or liberal districts. They tend to like their
congress people after they get in there if the congress person is any good
at politics, which usually they are. So, I don`t make a lot of Price`s
enormous margin. I don`t know what that district is, but I`m pretty sure
it`s not plus 24. And it certainly wasn`t plus 24 for Donald Trump. It
was plus 1 1/2.
VAN SUSTEREN: George, I`m listening to the Robocall by the president, I
don`t know what you thought but it sounded like he had a lot of passion in
WILL: It sounded perfunctory. It sort of odd that a president will weigh
in unless he has a really good chance, something you could call a win.
Remember the Connecticut Yankee and King Arthur`s court who staggered and
amazed everyone by predicting an eclipse of the sun that he already knew
was coming. So there is a sense in which as in litigation you don`t ask a
question you don`t know the answer you`re going to get. You don`t enter a
race like this unless you have a pretty good chance of being crowned with
VAN SUSTEREN: This seems to me, and I`m not a Georgia voter, but it seems
more, governor, this is not about the candidate Ossoff. He`s a young man,
not well known. This is about Donald Trump.
DEAN: It is about Donald Trump, especially among white voters. The
African-American voters in this district, it`s not only going to be
motivated by the fact that they`re Democrats, but by the fact that John
Lewis has endorsed John Ossoff. And that`s a big deal, in which probably
he got the nomination or is going to get him the nomination. Why he`s the
front runner as opposed to the other four Democrats. So, yeah, this is
about Donald Trump. That`s what this is about. It`s a referendum on
Donald Trump. You`re going to see a lot of these in 2018.
VAN SUSTEREN: And we even saw Senator Joni Ernst in Iowa. She was talking
about the president having character flaws, agreeing with someone in the
WILL: It`s hard to disagree on that particular subject. There is so much
evidence out there. There is a question that a lot of people are saying,
well, these are somehow artificial crowds showing up at these town halls.
Well, there are intense factions. But intense factions make the world go
DEAN: And they are residents of their districts. I mean, they may be
Democratic residents of their districts, but these are not voters from
VAN SUSTEREN: And I think the fact – we do pick it up in the media when
someone gets screamed at. We pick it up in the media. It sends a message
back to the district. And that gets everybody riled up further. I think
at least other people. Maybe I`m wrong on that.
DEAN: This is what the tea party did that was so effective.
WILL: The optics matter. The optics of the tea party told people out in
the country there was an insurgency, might be fun to join it. And the same
is now working from the left. People see this, they say, well, I`m not
alone. I`ll go out and fight.
VAN SUSTEREN: Let me turn the question to Turkey. President Erdogan had a
victory with the change of the constitution over the weekend. President
Trump called to congratulate him.
WILL: Well, it`s one thing for us to accommodate our policy to an
important nation in the Middle East. It`s another thing to congratulate
someone for introducing all the values that America stands for.
DEAN: This is a very difficult issue for us. I think Trump did the wrong
thing. Erdogan has widely reported to have said, not on more than one
occasion, democracy is my bus and when I get to my stop I`m getting off.
And I think that`s true. That`s how he`s behaved. It`s very difficult,
Turkey is an absolutely geopolitical crossroads for us and very, very
important. But this election was flawed. The Europeans who monitor it
said it was flawed. I think the President Trump made a mistake here.
VAN SUSTEREN: What could he have done?
WILL: He could have been quiet. I mean, where is it written that
presidents have to talk about everything that happens in the world? He
could have been – had a Stoney silence which would have been in its own
way reverberatingly eloquent.
VAN SUSTEREN: I was just in the region last week. I mean, it`s so
vulnerable. It`s so – it`s just a tinder box. And now we`ve got.
DEAN: It is, Greta. But he`s also – Erdogan also causing a lot of
trouble. He`s normally allied with us, now he`s waffling whether Assad
should leave. Of course Assad has to leave. That`s not a question of any
kind. This guy is a butcher. He`s murdered half a million of his own
people. So, I think, Erdogan is a shaky ally. And he plays that
shakiness. And at some point you have to treat him as you would anybody
who is unreliable. And he is unreliable.
VAN SUSTEREN: Is Assad going?
WILL: I think Assad is winning.
VAN SUSTEREN: That`s what I think, too. I think Assad is there.
WILL: And he can make the case that if your objective is to economize
violence that is to simply minimize the blood shed all around, the sooner
he wins the better.
DEAN: I have to disagree on that one, but it`s just – we`ll leave that
for another time.
VAN SUSTEREN: No easy answers on that.
DEAN: No, there`s not.
VAN SUSTEREN: If it were easy we would have solve this one a long time
VAN SUSTEREN: Anyway, thank you, gentlemen. And we have some new
information on the condition of former President George H.W. Bush. His
spokesperson saying tonight that the former president was admitted to
Houston Methodist Hospital on Friday for observation because of a
persistent cough. It was then found the president had a mild case of
pneumonia which was treated. President Bush`s office says he`s in good
spirits and is being held for further observation. And Mr. President, the
whole country wants – says this to you, get well soon. And still ahead, a
disturbing broad daylight murder of an elderly man videotaped, posted on
Facebook, Facebook now facing tough questions. Does Facebook have any
responsibility? And what about us, the 2 billion Facebook users? Plus, is
President Trump a populist or globalist? Something in between? Today he
jumped on Air Force One, back to Wisconsin, back to America first, but not
everyone is buying it. Also, remember this?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Oh, get out of here. Get out of here. Look at these people. Get
out of here. Get out! Out! Out! Out! Get out!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Is President Trump legally liable for any violence at that
rally? It`s a real case in federal court and there is a surprising
argument from the Trump legal team. All that, plus we`re talking about the
first 100 days. No, not his, someone else`s. Stick around to find out
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: With this action, we are sending a powerful signal to the world, we
are going to defend our workers, protect our jobs, and finally put America
TRUMP: It`s America first. You better believe it. It`s time. It`s time,
right? It`s time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: President Trump in Wisconsin, looking to revive the economic
populism that helped put him in the oval office, signing a buy American and
hire American executive order, but the New York Times today saying that
some Trump voters are dismayed by a drift away from populism. That
populist message is central part of the Steve Bannon agenda. But is the
White House now following Jared Kushner`s agenda? The New York Times is
noting that the Trump has stacked his administration with billionaires and
lobbyists while turning over his economic program to a Wall Street banker.
The CEO of News Max saying he ran as a populist but so far has governed as
a traditionalist and it could be hurting him. A new poll showing 45
percent think President Trump keeps his promises. Now that`s down 17
points from February. With me from Madison, Wisconsin, John Nichols,
national affairs correspondent for The Nation, Susan Ferrechio, chief
congressional correspondent for the Washington Examiner. First to you,
John, President Trump back in Wisconsin, Wisconsin went for Trump, first
time since 1984 that Wisconsin went for a Republican. He is back there
today. How well received?
JOHN NICHOLS, THE NATION: Actually, the event went off very well for him.
And apropos of what you were saying in your intro there, this was a very
populist event. He did bring Steve Bannon along for the trip. And his
message kind of really ricocheted back to what he was saying during the
campaign. And it`s notable, Greta, that not only did he do the buy America
hire America executive order, he also kind of on the moment or in the
moment did a major statement as regards protecting U.S. dairy farmers,
which as you know is a very big issue in Wisconsin. So, this was full-on
Donald Trump populism. There were protests outside, to be sure, but inside
the room it felt a little like a Trump rally from last year.
VAN SUSTEREN: Susan, that`s sort of in contrast to what is going on
lately, save the export import bank last week. He said that he`s going to
preserve or suggest to preserve the head of the Federal Reserve. He`s
backing off of NAFTA. So it seems it`s almost like, you know, he went off
to Wisconsin, to the great state of Wisconsin, I should add, to resurrect
SUSAN FERRECHIO, THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER: This dual bifurcated presidency.
Where on the one hand he`s the populist Trump where you see him going out
to Wisconsin and holding a very populist event, and signing offer on some
things that are definitely populist in nature. But then on the other hand,
he`s got half his staff pushing him in another direction, more traditional
direction. I kind of foresaw this going. There was no way he could run a
completely populist presidency when his staff includes many traditional
Republicans, traditional conservatives.
VAN SUSTEREN: Some from Wall Street.
FERRECHIO: A lot from Wall Street.
VAN SUSTEREN: . billionaires, I mean.
FERRECHIO: Yes. I wonder how he as president can survive that. He can
still hold onto – it`s very tricky. Still hold onto the base with his
populism, yet do the bidding of the Republican Party, which certainly does
not always contour toward the populist base. He`s doing that. He`s
marching along doing both those things. As you showed in the polls, he`s
not always pulling it off. People don`t see him as keeping his promises,
but yet he`s still attracting all these people to the rallies. He`s still
popular. In fact, his one poll out today shows his popularity rating is
going up. So he`s had mixed success at this.
VAN SUSTEREN: John, I know you follow what is going on here in Washington.
Of course, we drink the cool aid here in Washington. We pay attention to
all the palace intrigue. But I`m curious about the people in Wisconsin.
Are they sort of involved in the palace intrigue, the Jared Kushner versus
the Steve Bannon, which is the globalist versus – you know, I mean, you
shake your head.
NICHOLS: No, they`re not. You know, I haven`t heard anybody in Wisconsin
mention, you know, whether the Goldman Sachs Kabal is ahead of the
Breitbart Kabal or whatever people want to talk about. Here`s the bottom
line. Donald Trump campaigned as a billionaire populist. Now, the good
bet usually is that if you campaign as a billionaire populist, you`re
probably going to end up governing as a billionaire. But for Trump, he
can`t do that. He came to Wisconsin, a state that he won by just a
fraction, about 22,000 votes ahead of Hillary Clinton. And he cannot –
he`s got no margin for error in that. If he doesn`t deliver a populist
message and stick to it in places like Kenosha, Wisconsin, where he went,
which by the way is in Paul Ryan`s district. And if he doesn`t, you know,
quickly step up on issues like the dairy farm issue, which he did, he has
no chance of holding these states in the future. And frankly, he will harm
Republicans down ballot. So, it`s a tight rope walk to be sure. But I`ve
always been amused by the notion that somehow Steve Bannon and these people
are going to be marginalized and pushed out the door. If they`re
marginalized and pushed out the door and Donald Trump becomes a Goldman
Sachs president, I can tell you states like Wisconsin are not going to
stick with him.
VAN SUSTEREN: We only have 30 seconds left, Susan. This is just an aside
inside gossip. But Reince Priebus is from Kenosha. Imagine returning to
your hometown on Air Force One. It doesn`t get any better than that, does
it? I got to interview B.B. King in Appleton, Wisconsin, my hometown, that
was pretty good. This is better.
FERRECHIO: Another reason why he`ll probably stay on the staff. This
rumors that he`s going to be ousted, I think he is an important component
of the connection to Wisconsin, which is really important. It was one of
the most important states for Trump to win.
VAN SUSTEREN: Susan, thank you. John, thank you. I hope to get back to
Wisconsin soon, John.
VAN SUSTEREN: Ahead, the manhunt for the Facebook killer is over, but the
debate is just beginning. Should Facebook take some responsibility? Also,
China approves trademarks for Ivanka Trump the same day she met with the
Chinese president. Is this a conflict of interest or much ado about
nothing? And sucker punched at a Trump rally, we saw violence at a few
stops on the trail, but can President Trump be to blame? He was just sued.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: So, if you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the
crap out of them, would you? Seriously.
TRUMP: OK, just knock the hell – I promise you, I will pay for the legal
fees, I promise. I promise.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Now, that was a Trump rally last year showing how charged
the atmosphere was. Now, President Trump is being blamed for inspiring
violence and he faces a lawsuit. It stems from this rally in Louisville,
Kentucky, from March of last year. You can see than an anti-Trump
protester being pushed through the crowd. Here are the people involved.
The man in the red hat, white nationalist Matthew Heimbach, and the man in
the black hat, Alvin Bamberger, the woman alleges that they both assaulted
her according to courts documents just filed. Heimbach said he was relying
on Trump`s authority to remove people. And Bamberger said he acted with
Trump`s, quote, specific urging and inspiration.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: All right, get them out. Get them out. Get them out. Get them
out. Oh, look who we have here, some wonderful people, ah. Get out of
here. Get out. Get out. Get out of here.
(CROWD CHANTING USA)
TRUMP: USA, USA. Oh, we have another wise guy. Go ahead. Get them the
hell out, get them out. Oh, get out of here. Get out of here. Look at
these people. Get out of here. Get out. Out. Out. Out. Get out.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: The president`s lawyers say he is immune to this lawsuit as
president. Alan Dershowitz is a constitutional law scholar and professor
emeritus at Harvard Law Scholl. Nice to see you, Alan. And now we have
this federal claim against the president and others. Take me through this.
ALAN DERSHOWITZ, HARVARD LAW SCHOOL: Well, first of all, Donald Trump
alludes on the issue of his immunity because he is a sitting president.
Theoretically he ought to win. I think the case was wrongly decided by the
Supreme Court, but it was nine to nothing in against Clinton in the Paula
Jones case, saying that he had to be sued while he sat as president. I
think the proper rule would be that you don`t have immunity, but you can be
sued only after you leave the presidency. If that issue has been resolved
nine to nothing he will lose. The judge also ruled against him on a motion
to dismiss which means he may have to sit down for discovery. But
ultimately, I predict he will win the case because I think the first
amendment protects the speech that he delivered, even though I thoroughly
disapprove of what he said. The speech he actually made on the day the
violence occurred was not a direct incitement to violence. In order to be
able to be prosecuted or even sued under the first amendment, there has to
be very specific incitement and it has to – the violence has to follow
pretty much immediately.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Let me ask you about this. In district of
Columbia, assault, you don`t have to touch a person. You just have to have
the apparent ability to do so. I can`t assault you because you`re far away
from me. I can`t reach and touch you. But if someone were sitting right
here if I threatened to assault the person and even don`t do it, I can be
guilty of assault. In this instance, people touched people and moved them
out of there. So, that is an unwanted touching. So, that would be an
assault. If you are encouraging someone, get him out, are you not – don`t
you run the risk, I should say, of someone thinking you are an aider and
DERSHOWITZ: Well, you do run the risk. And if it went to a jury he might
very well lose. But I think the court will keep it away from the jury.
You know, it`s interesting, some years ago I wrote a book about Thomas
Jefferson. I found a letter of Thomas Jefferson that was written,
literally, on the 25th anniversary of the declaration of independence in
which this precise issue was raised. A minister said if anybody makes a
speech urging to do violence and they do violence they should be
prosecuted. Jefferson wrote a very strong letter saying no. In America we
prosecute the people who do the violence, but not the people who make the
speeches. We draw the line between the advocacy on the one hand and the
violence on the other hand.
Now, imagine if the situation were reversed. Imagine if this was an occupy
wall street event and some extreme leftist saw somebody come with, say, a
Nazi flag or something and said get the fascist out of here. And they
pushed them out. In that case the ACLU would be all over this case. They
would say, first amendment, right of free speech, because it`s a leftist
who is making the speech. But because it`s Donald Trump, we haven`t heard
anything from the ACLU on this. We haven`t heard anything from the civil
liberties community. You know, that puts me in a tough position.
I was a Hillary supporter, not a Trump supporter. I`m a liberal Democrat.
But I believe strongly in a broad interpretation of the first amendment.
So, I have to be on Trump`s side on this issue. I wish more civil
libertarians would understand the broad implications of this. You hear
about shouting fire in the theater. That is the dumbest thing just as
Holmes ever wrote in his long career. Shouting fire in a crowded theater
is the equivalent of pulling a fire alarm, it`s not speech. Here you had
speech, literally speech. I think he is protected by the first amendment.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, NBC NEWS HOST FOR THE RECORD: Let me back up one more
step. You have these protests, these rallies. Or even these town halls.
Someone stands up and screams and yells at political opponent. Is that –
let me change the discussion a little bit. Can that be considered
trespass, because you`re invited there to listen, not to obstruct and to
yell horrible things.
DERSHOWITZ: It depends on whether it`s a public event. There was a case
just like that in the University of California which is a public
university. Michael Oren, former ambassador of Israel came to make a
speech. And students for Justice for Palestine decided to shut him down,
not allowing him to speak. The ACLU came into the case but on the wrong
side. They came in on the side of disrupter. They had a free speech right
to try to shutdown a speaker instead of than the right of the speaker. It
is being debated much today. It is a little different because here you
have the president of the United States. Look, he shouldn`t have made
those statements. And if there had been violence following his earlier
speech where he said, you know, punch them in the mouth, I`ll pay your
legal bills, that might have been a closer case. But you really can`t look
back at a prior speech and say, well, weeks later somebody engaged in
violence, because they took the current speech and put it in the context of
the previous speech. The first amendment won`t protect that and, so I hope
that the first amendment is interpreted broadly to protect Donald Trump
even though I disagree with the content of Trump`s speech and the manner in
which he delivered it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Alan, as always, thank you.
DERSHOWITZ: Thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: And China green lights trademarks for Ivanka Trump on the
same day she met with the Chinese president. Is it overblown, is it an
ethics violation or both?
VAN SUSTEREN: Today there is new scrutiny on Ivanka Trump and her unique
role as White House advisor, business woman and daughter to the president.
The Associated Press and the “The New York Times” diving into her potential
conflicts of interest, both reports noting China approved her new
trademarks for her brand on the same day that she and her father had dinner
with the Chinese president at Mar-a-Lago. Her company has 32 more
trademark applications still waiting to be approved in China. Ms. Trump
has stepped down from both of her fashion company and the Trump
organization. Today her lawyer said, quote, Ivanka has had no involvement
with trademark applications submitted by the business and will recuse from
particular matters where she has a conflict of interest. Eliza Collins is
a political reporter for USA today. Lynn Sweet is the Washington Bureau
Chief for the Chicago Sun Times and Daniel Lippman is a reporter for
Politico. All right Daniel to you, do you have a problem with the
DANIEL LIPPMAN, POLITICO: It looks like as her portfolio has grown in the
White House, she is edging toward the line of really delving into issues
that are going to affect her business like China, intellectual property.
VAN SUSTEREN: How about applying for a trademark?
LIPPMAN: I don`t think she is directly involved. But when a foreign
government receives trademark applications from Ivanka Trump, that company,
are they going to really turn them down? So, that is a real concern about
the ethics of that situation.
VAN SUSTEREN: Lynn?
LYNN SWEET, CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Appearance of impropriety. That is a
phrase that should be applied in this case, and she has a big portfolio.
It doesn`t have to include even though the president is her father, having
dinner with the leader of China and (inaudible) with the top Chinese
officials if the company she just recently left just weeks ago is doing
business. You could put more effort into avoiding even the appearance of
impropriety, because it is possible that she knew about these pending
business deals as she left the company.
VAN SUSTEREN: Eliza?
ELIZA COLLINS, USA TODAY: She is going to have to separate herself. But I
also think we had a president who campaigned with all of these potential
conflicts of interest and he still elected and he still has them. His base
doesn`t really care. Democrats are going to be upset with this. I think
it`s going to feed into that narrative more. I don`t think it changes
VAN SUSTEREN: Ok. You know what I think? I think completely different
from everybody else on this and I have all day long to try to figure it
out. Here`s the problem. If she didn`t get the trademark on her name, she
is going to get the trademark anyway. I could go in and get the trademark
theoretically and I could start selling items in China with her name on it.
I think it was just to protect her name. I have absolutely no problem with
it at all. With all the sort of knock offs, she`d have no way to preserve
it. If I went in and bought her name and bought products and started doing
that, there is no way she could protect herself if I own the trademark.
SWEET: Even so, so I don`t think the issue is that her company went after
the trademark. You have a good point there. I`m talking about what she
could do now that she is in the White House to make –
VAN SUSTEREN: She hasn`t done it yet. She hasn`t done anything wrong. I
think she is got to protect the trademark.
SWEET: I`m not saying that. I`m agreeing with you. We might be in
violent agreement, ok.
I am saying that she, therefore, can take a few extra steps in this
transition period, knowing that she is a brand and that is to be protected.
You do other things on the White House and to work a little harder to avoid
VAN SUSTEREN: I must have the last word on this. I just think that she –
that she has – she should protect her name. And maybe not do anything
while she is in the White House, but at least when she leaves and no one in
the meantime can high jack it. But anyway, I`m the only one that thinks
We have a new price tag for President Trump`s border wall at least
according to senate Democrats. Members of the Homeland Security Committee
releasing a report estimating that, that wall could cost nearly $70 billion
to build. In February the Trump administration put the cost at 21 billion.
As a candidate Mr. Trump said it would cost 12 billion. President Trump
still insisted Mexico would pay for it. Here`s what Speaker Paul Ryan told
me about that when interviewed him in January.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Who is going to pay for it?
PAUL RYAN, HOUSE SPEAKER: First off, we`re going to pay for it, front the
money, but I do think there are various ways – your follow-up question is
Mexico going to pay for the wall. There are a lot of different ways of
getting Mexico to contribute to doing this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Daniel, I don`t know whether – obviously the Democrats have
the highest number which I would expect. Even if you take the president`s
number it`s pretty steep.
LIPPMAN: Yeah, the Democratic number basically translates to $200 for
every man, woman and child. But I think the broader question is an
analysis of this border wall shows it might not even stop illegal
immigrants from crossing in lots of the different parts of it. And also
drugs. So, if Democrats can run campaign ads in a couple years saying,
Trump spent all of this money on the border wall and it doesn`t even stop
illegal immigrants and illegal drugs, why did we spend billions of dollars
on this wall where there already is a large portion of the border that has
some type of fencing.
VAN SUSTEREN: Eliza, one thing we don`t hear about, the price tag is
explosive, whether 12 billion, 70 billion, b with a billion, we`ve gotten
so used to that in this city. But nobody talks about people who come here
legally on visas and overstay, which is a huge number of people here in
this country illegally. That we don`t hear that much about.
COLLINS: You don`t hear that much about that and that wall is not going to
stop that. So, I think that is where the immigration reform part, you`re
hearing people talking about in congress are they actually going to do.
We`re not sure. But back to this wall, Daniel mentioned Democrats. I`m
also curious about conservatives who don`t like government spending. 70
billion might be the high end of this, but they won`t pay for it. Where is
this going to come?
VAN SUSTEREN: Lynn, I remember the old game, red rover, red rover. It
would be cheaper to take that 70 billion and to hire people to stand arm by
arm. We could probably afford it if it`s $70 billion.
SWEET: I like that idea.
VAN SUSTEREN: You like that idea?
SWEET: The question is on that, and you could for 70 billion –
VAN SUSTEREN: We could get a lot of people standing there on that border
for 70 billion.
SWEET: An employment program, too. In all seriousness, it is a highly
symbolic project of the Trump administration and one of the challenges as
he goes into these next few weeks with congress where they have a debt
crisis coming up, too, in order –
VAN SUSTEREN: Which Elijah raises.
SWEET: It is very hard to see how he will be able to raise all that money
at one time. But let`s remember, I believe it will come in a bite-size
chunk so congress will never really have a $70 billion and an invoice – 70
billion, right. So, this will be parceled out in a way that may be more
legislative palatable, just in a start-up fund.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Next, this could be a brawl. Will it be Warren
versus Trump in 2020? Senator Elizabeth Warren is out with a new book
sparking new questions about her White House ambitions, questions that she
is doing her best to duck.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Likely to run?
ELIZABETH WARREN MASSACHUSETTS SENATOR: I am running in 2018 for senator
from Massachusetts. I am deeply blessed that the people of the
commonwealth sent me to Washington to fight for them. And that is what
I`ll keep on doing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because a lot of people are already printing up those
bumper stickers for 2020 that say, she was warned, she was give not an
explanation, nevertheless she persisted.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: During the 2016 campaign, both Warren and Trump seemed to
relish going after the other.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WARREN: Let`s just talk about him for a minute, a large orange elephant in
DONALD TRUMP, THE 45TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Massachusetts is
represented by Pocahontas, right, represented by Pocahontas. She is
WARREN: Donald Trump doesn`t plan to pay. He just plans to use all those
things you paid for. What kind of man does that, a selfish little sleaze
TRUMP: This Elizabeth Warren, I call her goofy. This Elizabeth Warren,
she is one of the worst senators in the entire United States senate.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. We have the video running. Let me get your
predictions, yes, no, for 2020, Elizabeth Warren running?
LIPPMAN: I think she is following that guidebook that senators –
VAN SUSTEREN: Yes or no?
VAN SUSTEREN: Yes, ok. Eliza, is she running?
COLLINS: I think yes.
VAN SUSTEREN: Lynn?
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, it is going to be very interesting. She says she is
running 2018. I don`t think that Matt and Savannah seemed to believe when
she ducked it, but we`ll see. Anyway, thank you all.
LIPPMAN: Thank you.
SWEET: Thank you.
COLLINS: Thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: Ahead, the so-called Facebook killer is dead and now
attention is turning to the role of Facebook itself. Is it the company`s
responsibility, could policing the site set a dangerous precedent?
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg talked about it today and we talk about it
VAN SUSTEREN: The so-called Facebook killer is now dead. He shot himself
after a police chase. But the questions for Facebook and other social
media companies are just beginning. The grisly murder video was posted for
two hours before it was taken down. And today Facebook admits that it
needs to be better. Here`s what the founder Mark Zuckerberg said today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK ZUCKERBERG, CEO FACEBOOK: We have a lot more to do here. We`re
reminded of this week by the tragedy in Cleveland. And our hearts go out
to the family and friends of Robert Godwin Sr. And we have a lot of work
and we will keep doing all we can to prevent tragedies like this from
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: This problem is not going to away. In fact, it may be
getting worse. Last month a teenage girl in Chicago was raped, and that
rape was broadcast on Facebook live. Last summer a disabled teen was
tortured with a knife, his torture also broadcast on Facebook live. And in
January, a teenage girl in Miami killed herself in a two-hour-long video on
Facebook live. What, if anything, is Facebook supposed to do about this?
Is the company responsible for how many people use its platform? David
Kirkpatrick is author of the Facebook effect. David, I think it`s very
obvious Facebook and Facebook live did not commit this murder of this
gentleman, Mr. Godwin. Some cruel man did who has now shot himself in the
head, but your thoughts tonight about Facebook live and Zuckerberg and how
he is handling it?
DAVID KIRKPATRICK, AUTHOR OF THE FACEBOOK EFFECT: Well, it`s a complicated
question because there are both policy challenges and also technology
challenges. I mean the weird part is that we have a commercial company
that is essentially put in the position of having to decide fundamental
questions of social justice and virtue, because they are as gigantic as a
platform for distributing information and not just in the United States,
but increasingly around the world.
So they want to do the right thing, but they also don`t want to do the
wrong thing by taking things down too quickly. So there are a lot of
subtleties there. Then on the technology side, they have a real challenge
that even when they really would like to have software that can decide what
should and should not be aired, that software yet doesn`t really exist. I
think we could predict with advances in artificial intelligence it`s quite
possible we could have such software down the road, but we simply don`t at
the moment. So they`re in a pretty tough position right now.
VAN SUSTEREN: You know I will defend Facebook live because I use it. I
use it, in fact, at Samaritan`s purse, their field hospital in northern
Iraq near Mosul over the weekend. There`s nobody else there because it`s
so dangerous. I had the opportunity to go there. But without Facebook
live, you know, I couldn`t bring the viewers to it. I posted the video
later on my Facebook page, but Facebook live is such a good tool. I`ve
taken it to Ecuador to earthquake zones. So there`s much good we can do
KIRKPATRICK: I think that is something often left out when we have a
horrific incident like this and there`s so much controversy. The macro
impact of these platforms and particularly of Facebook, I think, is
extremely positive in society. People want to use those features like
Facebook live. The problem arises when you have a psychopath like this
murderer. Could you imagine what kind of person would want to shoot
somebody in the head while shooting a video? It`s incredible, but that is
the society we live in. Facebook has to operate in a world where some of
its users are like that. That is tough.
VAN SUSTEREN: I guess what I would want to know is how soon was notified
of this horrible, horrible, grisly video, and how fast did they act? I
would hope that they aired on the side of quickly pulling it down. Then if
it turned out for whatever reason some video is appropriate, they then
KIRKPATRICK: They did post a timeline, and they were notified, I think,
roughly an hour and a half after the video was posted, and they took it
down within 23 minutes of having been alerted. But, see, first, they have
to go through these processes where users can, you know, indicate that this
is an inappropriate video. Then they have – the software that sort of
surfaces the most important alerts, and then they have literally thousands
of people all over the world whose job is to look at these videos and
photos that have been flagged by users and by the software, and then make
an individual human determination that it should come down. That took 23
VAN SUSTEREN: I would just quickly pull it down and apologize if I pulled
it down inappropriately. I guess that is, you know, the only solution I
can think of.
KIRKPATRICK: Think of what happened with the photo from Vietnam of the
little girl who was naked when they took it down and got all that criticism
for taking down a historic photo.
VAN SUSTEREN: It`s a tough issue, and I`m sympathetic to Facebook,
certainly not to this killer, not one iota to the killer. Thank you very
much for joining us.
KIRKPATRICK: Thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: After the break as promised, we will take a look at the
first 100 days. But it`s not the president`s. Whose first 100 days are we
going to look at? Start guessing. We`ll be right back.
VAN SUSTEREN: I have something to say for the record, and I know you have
heard everyone talking about the first 100 days. So naturally you think
President Trump. Since there`s so much attention on the first days of any
new presidential administration, but the first 100 days has a slightly
different connotation for us here at “for the record.” when we hear it, we
think about our first 100 days. We started January 9th, before the
president`s January 20th inauguration. So tonight it`s our 100th day and
so far, so good. In fact, it`s been great. Love the staff. Each is
smart. Some I`ve just met and some came over with me from my last job.
And as with any new show, though there have been some glitches, but come to
think of it, those glitches have all been mine, not the staff.
Looking at the wrong camera, talking too fast, slurring my words, yeah, the
usual and how about our political guests? Vice president Pence, leader
Nancy Pelosi, Speaker Paul Ryan, Senator Al Franken. The list goes on and
on and on. And we`ve had robust debate and not only covered politics and
Trump`s first 89 days but Russia to North Korea to the passenger forcibly
dragged off that United Airlines flight that was caught on that video that
went viral all around the world. Yes, we`ve even covered those tweets by
you know who that seem to drive everyone wild. I`ve also integrated social
media into our show, even doing a Facebook live this weekend from the other
side of the world, northern Iraq at a Samaritan`s purse field hospital.
And whatever the story, our mission always remains the same, to hunt for
facts. Those stubborn things that can sometimes annoyed those who might
not like the facts of a particular story, whatever that may be. Look I
don`t pick the facts. Facts just are. So on tonight`s 100th day, so far
so good. In fact, so far, it`s great.
On to the next 100 days. Thank you for watching. We`ll see you back here
tomorrow night at 6:00 p.m. Eastern. If you can`t watch live, set your DVR
and go to my Facebook page, because you`ll see Facebook lives that I`ve
done live, but then we videoed and put on my Facebook page. And you also
should go to twitter, follow me @Greta. It`s a great place to write really
mean nasty things anonymously to me, just teasing. “Hardball” with Chris
Matthews starts right now.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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Copyright 2017 ASC Services II Media, LLC. 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 ASC Services II Media, LLC. You may not alter
or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the