Appearing on Fox & Friends on Friday morning, Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro discussed the furor that erupted on Thursday after President Trump’s alleged comments about Haiti and some African nations, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s scatterbrained comments about higher wages and bonuses corporations have given in the wake of tax cuts, and the explosive report alleging the Obama Administration protected the Iran nuclear deal by alerting a top Iranian terrorist that Israel planned to assassinate him.
Host Steve Doocy started by noting the “feeding frenzy” among the media after Trump’s alleged comments regarding Haiti and some African nations on Thursday at a meeting discussing immigration, then noted the president’s denial on Twitter. Trump stated, “The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used. What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made — a big setback for DACA.”
Doocy turned to Shapiro: “We’ve set the table. Where would you like to start?”
We can start with the denial. It’s unclear whether this was said or not. Now, the president has denied it; I would have preferred that if he was going to deny it he did it right away, obviously, rather than waiting 15 hours to do so, because obviously things sort of blew up in the meantime. As far as the comments that he’s accused of saying, there’s really two comments that he made: there’s the one that he said, “Why are we letting all these people from ‘bleephole’ countries into the country,” and then he said something about all these Haitians, they should be deported or something. Something along those lines.
Host Brian Kilmeade interjected: “Get ‘em out.”
Yeah, get ‘em out. The second accusation seems less well-substantiated than the first in terms of the sourcing that The Washington Post used. And it’s the second accusation that I think, is worse, in a lot of ways. It’s the first comment that — there are a lot of reasons people seem offended this morning. One is the idea that Trump said some countries are “bleepholes.” To be fair to the president, some countries are really crappy: the Sudan, North Korea, Haiti is not a great place to live, it has a life expectancy of 63 years and an average annual GDP per capita of something like 730 bucks. It’s not a great place to live. And the cursing, is it something that we love? No, but he said it behind closed doors unlike Joe Biden who actually said on a live mic that President Obama’s Obamacare deal was a big effing deal. So the vulgarity, I find the media’s jumping up and down over that, a little bit extreme considering that they’re happy to say the word that none of us are saying on air right now over and over on other networks.
The second question is whether he’s actually saying that people from bad countries should not come to the United States because, for some nefarious reason. Now there are two reasons why you could say that people from those countries shouldn’t come over or shouldn’t be privileged in, for example, the diversity visa lottery program. The first reason is not actually bigoted. That’s the idea that depending on the country that you are from, you may not be as well able to assimilate. And that’s not a black/white thing. If you’re from Russia maybe you’re not as able to assimilate easily as if you’re from Great Britain. And in this case the president’s choices of countries are really unfortunate because when he contrasts Haiti and Norway, it gives the people the ability to say, “Well, he’s meaning black and white,” when really all that he means is maybe the assimilation rates aren’t the same from different countries, which seems relatively —
Kilmeade stated, "Ben, I’ll go further than that. Norway was here 48 hours ago, the president that was at the forefront of his mind, number one, and number two, per capita income is through the roof so they say in terms of quality of living, but people saw it as black and white."
Right. I think that’s correct. The second way of reading it is the way which imputes bigotry to the president, I think requires a little bit of a jump and that’s the idea that the president was saying we don’t want people from these “bleephole” countries because they’re “bleephole” people. And I think that the media are taking it that way. Again, I think that requires a little bit of a leap. I’m not sure that that’s exactly what the president was saying. And without his exact wording and without any context as to what he was saying, I think that how you view is this is a Rorschach test on how you view the president. If you want him to be seen as a bigot, if you think that he’s a bigot already, you’re going to jump to “He’s a bigot” from these comments. If you don’t think he’s a bigot, you’re gonna say, ‘That’s not what he meant by this at all. “ Now would I prefer that he’d not said this? Of course. But that’s true about like half the stuff the president says, for me.
The female host asked Shapiro when Trump would stop trusting the Democrats and making impromptu remarks in front of them.
No question that if you’re going to say stuff like this, it’s not particularly smart to say it in front of people who are not your political allies. You shouldn’t say stuff like this to begin with, as you mentioned. You’re exactly right. One of the arguments in favor of bringing in people from bad countries is that they know what they’re leaving. A lot of our best immigrants are coming from places that are quite terrible, including my great-grandparents when they came over; I think pretty much everybody in the country’s great-grandparents came over from somewhere they considered bad, including the Pilgrims.
So the idea that that line works — but you’re right, the president, I swear, if the man could just stay off Twitter and watch his mouth, he would rise five points in the approval ratings almost immediately and the proof of this is that every time he goes out of the country and he doesn’t have access to Twitter and he doesn’t actually speak to the press and he’s not talking to Democrats, his approval ratings rise five to ten points.
Kilmeade: "And he does actually very good in these settings, these international settings as well."
Shapiro: "That’s right."
Kilmeade asked Shapiro about Nancy Pelosi’s remarks about the higher wages and bonuses companies are giving to employees in the wake of the tax cuts. He played a clip of Pelosi saying, “In terms of the bonus that corporate America received versus the crumbs that they are giving to workers to kind of put the schmooze on, it’s so pathetic.”
Doocy queried: “Crumbs to put the schmooze on. You live in California, can you explain what she’s talking about?”
No. No. (laughter from the hosts) I have no idea what she’s talking about. As a Jewish person who uses the word “schmooze” pretty regularly, you don’t put the schmooze on. That’s not actually a thing. And beyond that, when Nancy Pelosi says that people who are low income and getting raises because of the president’s tax cuts and the Republican tax cuts, when she says that doesn’t mean anything for those people, that’s pretty derogatory toward people who she’s supposed to be courting. I think the whole problem for the Democrats is that they didn’t win blue collar votes in places like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and now they’re going around saying that if you get 1000 bucks back from your employer, you get a raise from your employer, it doesn’t mean anything because it’s not enough money? Maybe she should stop hanging out in Marin County and start hanging out in rural Ohio.
Kilmeade noted Pelosi’s remarks about being excluded from a meeting she complained was comprised of “five white guys,” including Congressman Steny Hoyer. He asked, “Do people have to worry about her stability?"
I’m not sure that Nancy Pelosi has been all there for a while, but I’m not going to play armchair psychiatrist. I think the voters are going to have to decide whether or not they want Nancy Pelosi representing them and in San Francisco apparently they do. But Nancy Pelosi doing this routine about intersectionality with regard to congressional leadership, look, the negotiations definitely would have gone differently if Nancy Pelosi were there? She is going to have to explain why she would have negotiated any differently than Steny Hoyer, who’s her deputy. I’m just confused. Is she on a different page than Steny Hoyer? Did Trump not invite her because she’s a woman? Is that the implication? Because that’s pretty stupid, actually.
Doocy asked about the report stating that the Obama administration tipped off an Iranian terrorist that Israel planned to assassinate him, tipping him off so the Obama Administration could make sure that the Iran nuclear deal could go though.
It wouldn’t be the most surprising story; this comes from Haaretz, which is an Israeli newspaper that’s usually well-sourced. They were reporting it secondhand based on another report. Ben Rhodes, the former national security advisor, essentially, to President Obama apparently quasi-denied it on Twitter, but it wouldn’t be a particular surprise for the Obama administration to be making provision for an Iranian terrorist considering there’s an entire Politico report from Europe all about how they had done so for Hezbollah because they wanted to pay off the Iranian regime in order so they could ram through this nuclear deal. So your hackles always have to be up, your antennae have to be up whenever there’s a story about the Obama administration trying to bend over backwards to try to help evil people on behalf of that Iran deal. They were lying to the American people continuously about it, of course.
Kilmeade pointed out that Qassem Suleimani, the head of the Kuds force, whom Israel was allegedly trying to assassinate, was responsible tangentially for numerous American deaths. He said, “You talk about a foreign policy disaster that needs to be investigated,” adding, “This would be extraordinary if proven correct.”
It definitely would be a bombshell. One of the things that’s amazing is Tommy Vietor, who of course used to be a member of the Obama administration, apparently not when this story was broken, he came out and he said, “well, why exactly is everybody so exercised? It’s not like this guy Suleimani is Osama bin Laden or something.” That demonstrates the gap in understanding about terrorism that the Obama administration evidenced nearly every day in office.