This is a rush transcript of ‘Fox News Sunday’ on December 18, 2022. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SHANNON BREAM, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: I’m Shannon Bream.
Border states brace for chaos as the White House prepares to end the Trump era policy Title 42.
KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: We are required by the court to lift Title 42 and we plan to comply with that order. But we also need Congress to act.
BREAM (voice-over): The White House calling on Congress to play ball on immigration reform, but Republicans say secure the border first, and warn of yet another migrant surge that could come when Title 42 is lifted.
SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R-TX): This is a big flashing green light. If you can get to our southern border, you can probably make your way into the United States.
BREAM: We’ll ask Democratic Congresswoman Veronica Escobar, who represents the border town of El Paso, about her calls for the White House to do more to stem the crisis.
And we’ll get reaction from her fellow Texan Republican Congressman Chip Roy.
Congresswoman Escobar and Congressman Roy only on “FOX News Sunday”.
REP. ELISE STEFANIK (R-NY): The holiday season is in full swing, and Americans are still paying more for just about everything due to Biden inflation.
BREAM: Americans prepare for the most expensive time of year, with inflation top of mind.
We’ll ask our Sunday panel about new FOX polls on the economy and on whether Americans want to see Biden and Trump run again.
Plus, the World Cup final is live today only on FOX, a major showdown between Argentina and France. We’ll have the preview from the FOX Sports broadcasting team that has led our coverage.
All, right now, on “FOX News Sunday”.
BREAM (on camera): Hello from FOX News in Washington.
Since early in the pandemic, a Trump era policy called Title 42 allow the U.S government to turn away hundreds of thousands of migrants at the border. The policy was put in place due to concerns over the spread of COVID 19, but courts have cleared the way for Title 42 to end this week.
The White House insists that does not mean the border will soon be open. But many say the change will kick off yet another massive surge of people arriving to a border that’s already chaotic.
In a moment, Texas Democratic Congresswoman Veronica Escobar will join us to discuss the big changes.
But, first, let’s turn to Bill Melugin live in Eagle Pass, Texas, for a look at the difficult conditions along the border.
BILL MELUGIN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Hi, Shannon.
Two weeks ago, President Biden was asked if he would visit the border during his trip to Arizona. But he responded that there were more important things going on. Well, now, the city of El Paso is completely overwhelmed with the migrant crisis. They have just declared a state of emergency, and the worst may be yet to come.
Stunning new video out of El Paso, Texas, this week where a massive migrant caravan of more than 1,000 people crossed illegally into the U.S., making it the largest single group FOX News has ever seen. The El Paso sector has recently averaged over 2,400 illegal crossings per day and has already seen over 139,000 migrant encounters since October 1st.
That reflects a staggering 255 percent increase over the same time last year. Local Customs and Border Protection facilities are well over capacity and local shelters are overwhelmed.
Border Patrol has been releasing hundreds of migrants to El Paso streets every day, with many of them becoming homeless forced to camp out on city streets at night, in the bitter cold. Thousands of others have been camped out behind the border wall waiting to be let in for processing.
The CEO of one shelter says what’s happening there is unprecedented.
BLAKE BARROW, CEO OF RESCUE MISSION OF EL PASO: We’ve never seen anything like this. And I’ve been the CEO 25 years. Now, all of a sudden, Border Patrol is releasing as many as 500, 600 a day, just to the streets of El Paso.
MELUGIN: Massive groups continue to cross illegally in Eagle Pass as well, with FOX News drone video showing this group of several 100 migrants after they crossed.
CBP sources tell FOX News the Del Rio sector has seen nearly 118,000 migrant encounters since October 1st. That’s up 55 percent over last year.
BRANDON JUDD, NATIONAL BORDER PATROL COUNCIL PRESIDENT: When you look at a typical month, we should be apprehending somewhere between 1,000 to 1,500 people a day. Our resources are stretched when we apprehend 2,000 people a day. We’re already at 8000. We can expect to see — by January, we can expect to see between 10,000 to 12,000, and then it could just go up from there.
MELUGIN: And that is because Title 42 is set to drop in just three days from now. When that happens, DHS is projecting the border could be seeing anywhere between 9,000 and 15,000 illegal crossings every single day — Shannon.
BREAM: All right. Bill Melugin, reporting from the U.S.-Mexico border — Bill, thank you very much.
Joining us now, Democratic Congresswoman of Texas, Veronica Escobar.
Congresswoman Escobar, welcome to “FOX News Sunday”.
REP. VERONICA ESCOBAR (D-TX): Thank you, Shannon. It’s a pleasure to be here with you. Good morning.
BREAM: Okay, we’ll talk about El Paso, your hometown in just a minute. But first I want to start with the White House, they said this week. The president is on top of this problem. Local officials there in El Paso do not agree.
Here’s a little bit from both sides.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: What Americans should know is that the president has done — has done the work to deal with what we’re seeing at the border since day one.
CLAUDIA RODRIGUEZ, EL PASO, TX CITY COUNCIL MEMBER: That is insulting. There’s no work being done here. We have been given money. We have been promised money. We have been using money from our general fund. There is nothing being done here in El Paso. It’s only going to get worse.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: Congresswoman, where do you stand on assessing how the president is handling the situation?
ESCOBAR: Well, I will tell you that soon-to-be former city representative completely misrepresented the federal government’s involvement. FEMA has been extraordinary in our community. They have advanced funding to local governments. They have been a phone call, a text away all these months. They just approved an additional large up front funding to the city of El Paso.
Those of us who are engaged on this issue here on the ground have very close communication. We have a text thread — the Border Patrol sector chief keeps us informed daily on the numbers.
But I will tell you, Shannon, I do think it’s important that we have far more robust support from the State Department. And here’s why. Unfortunately, Congress has failed to act on changing are very outdated immigration laws for decades.
The federal government under, you know, Congress’s direction, has addressed immigration as a border only issue. We really have to kind of zoom out and recognize this is a Western hemispheric refugee crisis of historic proportions, impacting all of our countries, to the south of us. We really need far more direct engagement from the State Department, and I’ve called on the State Department to do that.
BREAM: Well, let’s talk about the broader implications because in talking with Border Patrol agents, which I’m sure that you do on a regular basis, I had one of them an official tell me this week that right now in El Paso, about 60 to 70 percent of personnel is committed to just processing people. They’re not patrolling the border. Their opinion is that once Title 42 lifts on Wednesday, about 90 percent of what they’re doing is going to be just processing people.
That leaves them unable to patrol the border for cartels, for drug and human trafficking. They said this is a national security issue when you look at the fiscal year just behind us, 98 people who were on the terror watch list came across the border. That’s that we know of, or that were detected there.
This is, as you say a much broader problem. But how worried are you about the national security implications with the current situation and what most people expect will get much worse on Wednesday?
ESCOBAR: We absolutely have to get our Border Patrol agents back to performing the functions they were trained to do. And that’s why we’ve really got to rework and reform the way things are happening at the border. I have a bill, a piece of legislation that reforms that, that creates a civilian workforce for processing.
We — about four years ago, I introduced the idea. We funded it. We now have central processing coordinators, civilian public servants for the federal government doing the processing. We’ve got to expand that, so that agents can get back to performing those functions that they need to perform for our national security purposes.
Now, I will share with you, like when you look at those videos, you see mostly folks who are — the vast majority of whom are waiting in line to request asylum. That is what’s overwhelming the system and we’ve got to make sure that that we continue to press on Congress to reform what are outdated processes outdated laws to adequately fund the State Department because, while yes, I want the White House to do more, I also want Congress to act.
And I don’t want us to do more of the same, Shannon, which is focus only on deterrence, focused on immigration as a border issue. We’ve done that for decades, and this is what it’s gotten us today.
ESCOBAR: Let’s put up some hard data so we can look at the trend of what’s been happening.
This is from the CBP and essentially what they’re showing us in October, their migrant encounters were 230,678 at the border. That’s up 40 percent from the October of the previous year, 221 percent from the October before that. And before that, 411 percent increase.
There is clearly a trend here. We have numbers that show overall incursions for the year as well.
Now, critics say that although this administration continues to say the border secure, it’s under control, the border is safe, it is not open — there are critics who say these numbers prove otherwise. They include Democrats like California Governor Gavin Newsom, like Eric Adams, the mayor of New York, who say there is a massive problem.
Do you count yourself among those Democrats?
ESCOBAR: We have — we absolutely have a problem. But you know, the challenge here is, again, Congress has failed to act. We started seeing the increase in numbers and a change in what was happening at the border going all the way back to 2014 when we started seeing large numbers of unaccompanied minors.
During the prior administer — that was the Obama administration. During the Trump administration, we saw significant numbers that decreased as a result, mostly of COVID, because nobody knows what was happening here on the border more than those of us who live and work here.
But as the pandemic was —
BREAM: But fair to say during the — during the first couple of years of the Trump administration, there were massive drops in numbers when people got the message that they weren’t going to come here and have an easy process into the country illegally.
BREAM: Those numbers changed again once people realized Congress wasn’t going to go along with his plans. The wall was not going to get built. I mean, there was a drop under his tough talk, and then we saw the increases again.
And now, they’re exponential in this administration.
ESCOBAR: Those numbers were high under the Trump administration, and they dropped as a result of the pandemic, when people’s — when the traffic or the flow of humanity stopped.
I mean, I’ve visited not just the central processing facilities, but I visited the Border Patrol stations where it was — we had — facilities that were so overcrowded children were dying. That happened under the Trump administration.
So my point is, though, not to necessarily go administration by administration, although I’m happy to review those numbers, but to say this has been ongoing for a long time, and Congress’s response has been, let’s keep doing the same thing. Let’s treat immigration as a border only policy.
Everyone should now see and understand that is a failure. It’s an expensive failure. It’s not good for the agents. It’s not good for the migrants.
I can tell you, it’s not good for border communities like ours. We have to be smarter about this and begin looking at the bigger picture or things will get worse, regardless of who’s in the White House, but depending on who’s in Congress.
BREAM: Well, to the point about the children, “Politico” magazine had a report over the summer that talked about the facilities. They say it’s no place for a child where these children are being held in Border Patrol facilities. It says the records show that conditions for minors have not significantly improved under President Joe Biden, and critics will argue that there are a number of attractive policies and things here that are drawing more and more people.
I mean, Governor Gavin Newsom in talking about the trouble at the border this week admitted — listen, he was somebody who said free health care for everybody in the California budget, regardless of your status, and now, he’s demanding that the federal government bail them out.
ESCOBAR: You know, I — I don’t know about you or about any of my Republican colleagues who loved to parachute into my community and do their photo-ops at the border, but I have spoken to migrants, and I’ve been speaking to migrants who arrive at our nation’s front door here in El Paso for decades. I’ve been talking to them as recently as a couple of weeks ago.
The vast majority of migrants don’t know who Gavin Newsom is or what his policies are. The vast majority of migrants, you know, actually, when they arrive, they will tell you about their arduous journey. Why they left, what is pushing them out of their home country, what is making them take that dangerous journey, just to seek refuge and help and asylum. And so, this is —
BREAM: Congresswoman, is it also fair to say, though — is it fair to say that the cartels, the bad actors, the smugglers, the coyotes will say to them, these are the policies and things that now wait for you if you come with us? If you take this terrible journey, where —
BREAM: I mean, the largest number of migrant deaths ever recorded the border last year, almost 900 people. We know these are real human beings and children and families, but they’re being exploited because of what they’re being told about the policies that await them here.
ESCOBAR: One hundred percent. These cartels, these human traffickers are evil, and it is horrific what they are doing. And in fact, there are some policies, most of which started under President Trump, they are still in place under President Biden like Title 42, which is still in place today that the cartels exploit.
But I will tell you, when I spoke to migrants under the Trump administration. They were telling migrants, you better come now, you know, Trump is going to build the wall. That’s when we saw a large number — large numbers coming through El Paso.
And, frankly, having Republican colleagues go on national TV, consistently saying the border is open, the borders open, they’re the ones saying the borders open. I think their rhetoric has a role to play as well and what the cartels use.
But regardless, I will tell you the cartels will do anything possible to exploit these folks, whether they tell the truth, whether they lie, it doesn’t matter.
But what’s motivating folks is persecution, poverty, famine, and we’ve got to address this as more than just a border issue or it will not change.
BREAM: And we can’t forget that these are real human lives. I know you see that every day and are committed as a third generation El Pasoan there, too, helping your community.
Congresswoman, we thank you for making time for us today.
ESCOBAR: Thank you, Shannon.
BREAM: Up next, we will get reaction from across the aisle. Congressman Chip Roy of Texas, he can answer some of these accusations when he joins us, next.
BREAM: Senators Thom Tillis and Kyrsten Sinema made headlines this fall, saying they wanted to partner in a bipartisan immigration deal, but it’s already falling apart.
And over on the House side, Republican lawmakers from Texas say they’ve got their own plan.
Joining me here in Washington, one of those Republicans, Congressman Chip Roy.
Welcome to “FOX News Sunday”.
REP. CHIP ROY (R-TX): Good morning, Shannon. Merry Christmas.
BREAM: And to you as well.
Okay, let’s start. You heard your colleague from across the aisle, Congresswoman Escobar, there —
BREAM: — and she said, Republicans parachute in. They have all these negative things to say. She says you’re part of the problem by saying the border is open.
ROY: Yeah, well, first of all, it’s hard to say we parachute in. We live there. We live in Texas.
The border I represent on its southwest edge is about 100 miles from the border. And if you go talk to the residents along the border, they’re happy to see us come down and talk to him because we’re actually trying to focus on solving the problem.
When Senator Cruz and I, for example, in Laredo about a year ago, all heavily Hispanic Democrats, traditionally Democrat voters, they were all saying — just angry with Joe Biden administration, angry with Democrats, and just thanking us for being there, because we’re actually trying to solve the problem.
That’s why my GOP colleagues in the Texas delegation got together and we introduced what we call the Texas border plan.
We know what to do. We saw it work under the Trump administration, but it’s also common sense. You need to have the infrastructure along the border.
But, by the way, that’s bipartisan. Henry Cuellar and I have a bill to clear cane (ph) and build roads. Build the wall, we need to do that as well.
But we need to have the policies that will actually work and what those policies have to be our turn away and detain, not apprehend and release. And what this six-point plan from the Biden inspiration is, is a supercharged apprehend and release. That’s all it is.
More money to process more people, which floods the zone, attracts more people to come here, allows more of these immigrants to get abused.
And you and I have talked about this before. In San Antonio, with all due respect to Congressman Escobar, when she scoffed at me in the Judiciary Committee last year when we raised these issues, talking about fentanyl, talk to the moms who have lost their loved ones and their kids.
How about this 53 immigrants who died in a tractor trailer in San Antonio cooking in the Texas heat?
It is not compassionate to have open borders, allowing cartels to get enriched and allowing China to exploit our borders and allowed fentanyl to pour in.
BREAM: What about her accusation that by saying the borders are open, you’re actually attracting more people here? Republicans are doing that.
ROY: Biden campaigned on it. There were people showing up to our border wearing Biden T-shirts.
There’s no — nothing hidden around the world about what this administration is doing, what Democrats on Capitol Hill are doing to say that our borders are wide open. When you put a big neon sign saying, if you come here and claim asylum, or heck, even now, you don’t even have to claim asylum.
In Eagle Pass where Bill Melugin was just reporting from, there’s a four- acre facility processing people. They don’t even have to claim asylum or get processed for credible fear. They just get processed and released on parole, released on a notice to appear.
And everyone knows this. You know who knows it? The cartels, and they’re charging $3,000, $8,000, $10,000 a head to move human beings into our country for profit, and the Biden administration is allowing that to occur.
BREAM: OK. Let’s talk about Democrats who say that you’re not part of the solution. I know you have your — thing that you have offered up.
BREAM: But let’s go here.
Okay, so California Governor Gavin Newsom put it this way this week. He said: Instead of working on real reform, the response from Republicans has been to exploit the situation at our border for political gain.
The White House, then asked this question: What work have Republican officials done to secure the border besides vote against our record border funding requests and block plans to fix our broken immigration system?
You guys know when Republicans were in charge of the White House, the House and the Senate, nothing got fixed.
So how do you answer these accusations that you’re actually impeding progress?
ROY: Well, first of all, let’s go to the summer of 2018, and there were a couple of competing bills. One bill, what was — the Goodlatte one bill it was known around this town had actually status for DACA recipients, right, had status for about a million plus people, would have secured the border and reform our immigration system.
How many Democrats voted for it? Zero.
They have no interest in actually working to try to secure the border and do the things necessary to stop the flow. Republicans are putting plan after plan after playing.
So that’s why the Texas delegation got together to say, here’s what border security would actually look like.
Democrats want to simply throw more money at the border and then process more human beings, while they’re getting abused. They’re the ones using them as political pawns for their crass political purposes. They’re using the Hispanic community.
Go ask Mayra Flores. Go ask Monica De La Cruz. Go ask the Hispanics in South Texas who are enraged at what Democrats are doing and using them for political purposes.
But I have to say one thing about my Republican colleagues with the omni coming this week. We’ve been running on this being the border and Biden — Biden border crisis. This is the McConnell Republican border crisis if we give them more money this week without demanding that they secure the border and do more bloated spending and giving DHS money with the blank check.
BREAM: To the point on the — on the funding, though, they will point to Secretary Austin, defense secretary, to say he’s asked for a full fiscal year of funding, saying it will hurt our men and women in uniform —
BREAM: — their ability to do their jobs to be safe to protect us, if we don’t give them that funding.
ROY: Well, the secretary is correct that we should have an appropriations process where we fund our men and women in uniform without it being continuing resolutions.
However, that can’t be an excuse for us to just give a blank check to the Democrats — $50 billion, Shannon, additional funding for non defense discretionary, money that’s going to go fund an FBI that labeled parents as domestic terrorists, money to go to a DHS that doesn’t secure the homeland and will actually not allow us to have the leverage to force them to secure the border. Money that’s going to go to all of the woke policies at the Department of Defense.
Republicans are about to literally give the Biden administration a blank checks.
So their opening shots after getting the rears handed to them in November, is to redefine marriage and stomp on religious liberty, passed a $1.7 trillion bloated spending bill that won’t allow us to secure the border, and they wonder why Republicans across the country are mad of.
BREAM: What tools do you have, though? I mean, we run out of money on Friday, apparently again.
BREAM: So what tools do you have as a member of still in this lame duck? You’re in the minority in the House.
ROY: Well, while I’m watching Texas get assaulted, I would be using the power of the purse. James Madison wrote in “Federalist Paper 58” that is the most effective tool against the tyranny of an executive branch that stomping on the — on the people. We can use the power of the purse to actually change policies.
But Republican leadership in the Senate and frankly too many in the House are walking away from using that important tool to check the executive branch. That’s why we have separation of powers.
Congress, we have the power of the purse. The House of Representatives — we’re the ones who are supposed to set the tone.
BREAM: And, clearly, your argument is that if you do another short term spending bill —
BREAM: — when the House flips to Republicans in January, you can set more long term priorities.
But if you don’t have the votes to convince your own colleagues in the Senate or in the House to go along with that, are you going to be saddled with something that may not reflect your priorities through September 2023?
ROY: Well, that’s actually the question, right? And this is where leadership matters. We need leadership in the Senate, Leader McConnell. We need leadership in the — in the House, and we’re having a debate about the speakership, to stand up and force Republicans in the Senate to actually honor what the American people want.
Not just Republicans. Again, Hispanics in South Texas who wanted to secure the border. We can’t give up our power of the purse to demand that we do that. While Democrats say, whoa, write us another check so we can process more people at the border and empower cartels and empowered China, the American people want us to secure the border.
Republicans run on these things. Why do we campaign the things that we run against? I just — I don’t understand why Republicans coming and say, oh, give a blank check to a bureaucratic state, bureaucrats in the Biden administration who are targeting the American people, refusing to secure the border and refusing to do their job, and we’re going to give them a blank check.
That’s what Leader McConnell should change, and that’s what I hope Kevin McCarthy will try to fight.
BREAM: OK, very quickly because we got to go. Two top priorities for people when you ask them about the border is border security, but also making a legal pathway for people who are here brought as kids, against their own will or not, any part of that conversation.
Quickly, can you meet anyone halfway on any of that?
ROY: Well, again, I would point out in 2018 — virtually, all of Republicans supported a bill that had status for DACA.
BREAM: So, you could do that?
ROY: But I’m going to tell you that con — but that conversation is dead on arrival until they actually talk about securing the border, which means turning people away and detaining them rather than processing and releasing them.
BREAM: It feels like an impasse, but we’ll see what you can get done.
Congressman, we appreciate you coming into debate it.
ROY: Well, thanks, Shannon. Again, merry Christmas.
BREAM: And you, too.
Up next, brand new polling on how Americans feel about the economy and who is responsible. We’re going to bring in our Sunday group on that, and what potential voters are saying right now about whether Biden and/or Trump should run again in 2024.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The president has taken — has an economic policy, economic plans, that we have seen him execute over the past 20 plus months that has shown to have been effective.
REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): We can’t afford to continue to spend the way the Democrats have. The future generation cannot afford it as well.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: The White House and top Republicans sparring over spending as the federal government is set to run out of money again this week if the two sides don’t get a deal by Friday.
It is time now for our Sunday group.
“USA Today’s” Washington bureau chief, Susan Page, “The Wall Street Journal’s” Jason Riley, Fox News senior political analyst Juan Williams, and “The Daily Caller’s” editorial director, Vince Coglianese.
Welcome all of you.
OK, we’ve got brand new Fox News polling. We want to talk about the economy. So, this is post midterm election. The condition of the economy, 19 percent say excellent or good, 81 percent, Jason, say fair or poor.
JASON RILEY, “THE WALL STREET JOURNAL” AND FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Yes, the – – you know, we got some good inflation numbers in the sense that it’s not getting much worse. But it’s still there. I mean the Fed’s target is 2 percent. Inflation’s at 7 percent. So, it’s still three times the Fed target.
But more importantly, inflation is still rising faster than earnings. So people are seeing — they don’t see their paycheck going as far as it did before the pandemic. And until that stops I think this is going to be a headache for the administration.
One thing that struck me in the polling is that not only do most Democrats and Republicans site the economy and inflation as a problem, when people are asked, have the Biden economic policies helped or hurt you personally –
BREAM: You’re looking ahead in my notes.
RILEY: Just 16 percent said help.
RILEY: And close to half said hurt.
So, the Biden administration owns this. That means I don’t think they can get away with blaming it on what they inherited or Covid or what have you. The – the – the voters are looking to them to solve this problem.
BREAM: OK, so let’s put up that poll again. Have you been helped by President Biden’s economic policies? Only 16 percent say yes. 46 percent say they’ve actually been hurt, Juan, by those policies.
JUAN WILLIAMS, FOX NEWS SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think one thing I noticed in the polls, there’s a big difference between how people feel overall, which the people are pretty sour about the economy right now. I think there’s fears of recession coming and concern about the impact of what’s going on with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Covid outbreak in China and all that. But people, on their personal level, I think it’s almost 47 – 50 percent in the Fox poll say they feel good about their personal finances.
And when it comes to President Biden, to that point, I noticed that the president’s been traveling to Arizona to visit that new chips plant.
BREAM: But not to the border.
WILLIAMS: Well, that’s true.
And also traveling to Michigan to visit a new electrical vehicles plant. So, I think his emphasis is to say, hey, look, America, you may not feel it right now, but down the road, if — we see this economy turn around, they will also have reason to credit Biden, saying, you know, the inflation control act, the infrastructure bill, these are — the chips bill, these are steps that the president — concrete steps was taking to improve and help our economy.
Well, also within the poll, interesting, a plurality said that they think things are actually going to get worse. They are not optimistic about where they’re going to be a year from now. But where we’re going to be a year from now is also in the middle of a presidential election. And so let’s talk about those polls.
Asked, do you want Biden to run again in 2024? And this isn’t by party, this is just overall. Yes, 33 percent, but, Susan, no, 64 percent. And we are seeing the commercials and people from inside the Democratic Party saying, please, don’t run again.
SUSAN PAGE, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, “USA TODAY:: Yes.
BREAM: They’re publicly saying it.
PAGE: And — and it’s mirrored on the Republican side, too. You know, there is no enthusiasm – or little enthusiasm to have a rematch. For – Democrats would prefer somebody besides Joe Biden. Republicans would prefer somebody else besides Donald Trump. And yet that — that may well be that matchup we – we end up with. It’s — you know, you do see Democrats getting a little bit more enthusiastic about President Biden than they were six months ago, maybe as a result of inflation being tempered a bit, but you really need some good news on the economy, I think, for President Biden to be in a much better position.
White House officials are hopeful that the effect of the Fed’s policies on interest rates and spending through the infrastructure bill, some of the things that have been put in motion already, will help to do that. But – but we’ll see.
PAGE: It’s a challenge on both sides.
BREAM: It is. And so you reference the other side. Let’s put up that poll too. Are you glad that President Trump is running again in 2024. Yes, 39 percent, no, 58 percent.
And, Vince, I suspect some people are glad he’s running because they want him to be president again.
VINCE COGLIANESE, EDITORIAL DIRECTOR, “THE DAILY CALLER” AND HOST, “THE VINCE COGLIANESE SHOW”: Yes.
BREAM: And – and some people are glad he’s running because they think that he’s beatable.
COGLIANESE: Yes. Now, I think when you see Democrats in the poll who say they’re rooting for Trump to run again –
COGLIANESE: They – they do – they think he’s beatable, yes.
It is interesting to see these numbers. You know, Trump has a lot to overcome here with – he’s got headwinds now and he’s not doing himself favors when he announces a big announcement and the announcement is that he’s releasing digital training cards that only enrich him, not his campaign, if it wasn’t even for the campaign.
What he did later on the same day was more meaningful, when he talked about trying to tackle the idea that the government is used to censor speech in the United States. He actually made policy proclamations that were of tremendous value, I think, and were the kind of thing that would appeal someone to a candidate because it’s really about function — at the core in both Biden and Trump’s case, how are you going to serve the American people? How are you going to improve the life of the average person? And in those numbers, those economy numbers that we started with, remember, it’s the person who makes under $50,000 in America who was hit the hardest. There’s no – nothing’s even close. They’re very dissatisfied with Joe Biden and the economy right now.
BREAM: Well, and for the former president, who hopes again to be the future president, Jason, he’s still got a lot of legal hurdles to go through. We’re going to talk in the next panel about the January 6th committee, what’s going on with them.
But Georgia, New York, he’s got many other thing’s got to handle.
RILEY: He does, but I think his bigger problem is that his star just seems to be fading. I think the – the first inkling of this was the midterm results where his candidates did not do as well. And I think that’s a sign from the American public that they’re ready to move on, along with these poll numbers that are showing his declining popularity, along with, as Susan was saying, Biden getting something o a bump.
What we’re also seeing is him doing less well one on one in hypothetical matchups with Biden should he won, versus other Republicans who seem to do better in those hypothetical matchups.
WILLIAMS: Can I just make a quick point here?
BREAM: Quickly, yes, you can.
WILLIAMS: That I’m surprised when I look at the polls, though, that most Republicans still favor Donald Trump as the Republican nominee in `24.
BREAM: There’s definitely a core of the party that is very much excited about that idea and are glad that he’s out there.
OK, panel, hold on, we’ve got to take a quick break. But up next, from fears of shadow bans to fears of future actual bans, it was another controversial week for Twitter. What our brand-new polling shows about who you think is getting censored by social media.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VEDANT PATEL, STATE DEPARTMENT PRINCIPAL DEPUTY SPOKESPERSON: What I will say is that this department’s support for free speech and freedom of the press is well-documented. And it is certainly difficult to square how these removals are consistent with promoting free exchange. But, again, social media companies make their own independent decisions on content moderation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: That was a State Department spokesperson responding to Twitter suspending some journalist accounts this past week. Some of those, I believe, are in process of returning.
We are now back with the panel.
So, here’s what Elon Musk said Wednesday about why some of this was happening. Any account doxing a real-time location info of anyone will be suspended, as it is a physical safety violation. That includes posting links to sites with real-time location info. Posting locations someone traveled to on a slightly delayed basis isn’t a safety problem, so is OK.
COGLIANESE: Well, remember, the predicate to him posting this at all is an attack on his own son, his two-year-old son, who I – I don’t know how to pronounce the name, but x –
BREAM: But they say that they call him Baby X, just to make it easier.
COGLIANESE: Baby X. Baby X is in a vehicle and being carried by, I guess, Elon Musk’s security team, two years old, and – in L.A. and a guy dressed in an Antifa costume apparently cornered the vehicle and jumped on the hood of the car. And Elon attributes this to real-time flight tracking information that’s been dedicated to him at every moment and tracking his plane.
So, as a result, he said, look, this falls under the broad umbrella of doxing. This is posting the direct information of where someone is and it imposes a harm on them.
That is an argument that broadly the left has been making for some time, by the way, that – that posting even criticisms is – is – is akin to violence. So, posting real-time location information, Elon interpreted that as a threat and he said the plan is I’m banning that now. And many of the people who were banned were people who were – they were posting direct links to that content and then hiding behind, I didn’t post your actual location. No, you posted a hyperlink to it. If you post the Google Street View of my house, you’re posting the address to my house.
WILLIAMS: But didn’t – that’s the argument. He says he’s a free speech guy and in the past what you get is people who say, you know, there’s so much anti-Semitism, there’s so much white supremacy on this site. You don’t moderate it. Other people have been doxed. You said no. Now you’re saying it’s your personal safety. Oh, yes, I’m going to spend journalists as a result.
I think this is a PR ploy for a guy who’s put $44 billion into Twitter and now is trying to use — trying to generate this sense of grievance to get a conservative audience to plug into Twitter, hopefully draw some advertisers back, because Twitter – he’s running it into the ground. It used to be about news. Now it’s all about who’s fighting with Elon Musk.
COGLIANESE: If your two-year-old gets attacked –
BREAM: Hey, but we’re talking about it.
COGLIANESE: If your two-year-old gets attacked, how does that become a publicity stunt?
BREAM: Right, that’s going to change out –
PAGE: No — nobody is in favor of – of his child or himself being physically threatened. That’s clear. But what is Elon Musk’s master plan for – for Twitter? Because the things that he’s done that I think are really more controversial are – are loosening the things that restricted things that caused harm to children, are things that – that the spread of disinformation and misinformation that’s dangerous. So I don’t — I do not understand what his – what his gameplan is here.
BREAM: And I think that’s kind of what he likes for us – and he said, listen, I’m going to try things. Some of them – I think he said be dumb –
BREAM: And we will reel those back in. So, I mean, he admits this is a – this is an experiment in process.
BREAM: I want to hit on this, though, A Fox News poll on social media companies, are they biased against? Sixteen percent said they were biased against Democrats, 39 percent said Republicans.
Jason, there’s clearly still this perception that conservatives are not treated equally on social media.
RILEY: I — because it’s the reality. I mean what we’ve found out in recent weeks and months is that these social media companies were in fact working with the government to suppress certain speech, to make sure information didn’t get out there, whether it was about, you know, Covid’s origins or some other issue or Hunter Biden’s laptop or what have you. There was working to get – there was collaboration between the social media companies and the government. So this is not in the conservative imagination that this is going on. And it’s one of – you said you don’t know what Elon wants to do, Susan. I think he wants this to stop. And that’s one of his goals. It’s one of the reasons I think he wanted to buy the company.
BREAM: OK, by the way, since you mentioned Hunter Biden, I want to put up this poll as well. You – you brought it in, Jason, so now we’re going to do it. How important is it that the DOJ investigates Hunter Biden’s business with foreign governments? Now this, again, not by party, overall, 72 percent of people think it’s a good idea, Juan, to investigate what’s going on with Hunter Biden and why — give me the counter to that because if there’s nothing there, why not have the investigation that could potentially clear him?
WILLIAMS: But there is an investigation. That’s what I got – that was puzzled to me about the question because the Department of Justice is investigating Hunter Biden.
BREAM: There’s a U.S. attorney, yes.
WILLIAMS: And it’s being done by a U.S. attorney in Delaware who was appointed by Donald Trump. And he’s looking into whether or not Hunter Biden was wrong in the way he filed taxes, in the way that he handled a gun apparently that was from –
BREAM: So, 72 percent are for that.
WILLIAMS: Well, so, fine, that’s what — that’s what’s happening under the Biden administration. I don’t get it. There’s no preference here. If Hunter Biden’s guilty of anything, he’s guilty of using his family name for connections. And I don’t – it’s not illegal and – and we see this across many presidents in terms of their families.
BREAM: And there – and there was a lot of –
WILLIAMS: He’s also guilty of being an addict who was showing sort of pornographic images of himself. So, I mean, is he the bag (ph) man? If – would you pick him to be your – your Fredo if you were the godfather? I don’t think so. I think that’s — not the right guy.
COGLIANESE: But the pile of evidence here is immense, though. It’s not just that he was on drugs and there’s people of him in sex acts. That exists, yes, and that could be used for blackmail potentially. But, ultimately, you’ve got Tony Bobulinski and actual on the record business partner, saying that Joe Biden was the financial beneficiary of this arrangement. It – it is an explicit think that they have never denied. The White House has not put it down and Hunter has not put it down.
WILLIAMS: There’s no — there’s no evidence. T here’s no evidence.
BREAM: Well, it’s his – it’s his word out there potentially –
WILLIAMS: Yes, sure.
BREAM: And – and he’s talked about whether or not he’s been contacted, been willing to. There was a lots of back and forth on that. We’ll leave it there because we have two.
Thank you, panel. We’ll see you next Sunday.
Minutes from now, Fox Sports is live with coverage of the 2022 World Cup final. Right now, defending champ France is preparing to take on Messi and Argentina. We will bring in the broadcast team that’s been covering it all to discuss what you can expect on the pitch this morning .
BREAM: Just over an hour from now Argentina and France kick off the 2022 World Cup final. France hoping to defend its title, but Argentina’s Messi is looking to capture his first World Cup trophy.
We’ve been captivated for the last few weeks, and it’s pretty special for us this morning to have two of the broadcasters who have done the most to get Americans excited about what is now the world’s most popular sport.
Moments ago I sat down with Fox Sports FIFA World Cup 2022 lead studio analyst Alexi Lalas, and lead host, Rob Stone.
BREAM: Gentlemen, welcome to FOX NEWS SUNDAY.
OK, today is finally the day. My household is one of the millions around the world, maybe billions, watching, waiting, excited. What is the mood, Rob, like there on the ground?
ROB STONE, FOX SPORTS: A think the mood is, we’ve been here for four straight weeks covering this tournament, put the ball down, blow the whistle and let’s go. We’ve got a legend in the making and a legend on the field. The two biggest storylines coming into this World Cup were, can Messi finally win his first ever World Cup. Can Kylian Mbappe and France defend their crown? And those two storylines have made it all the way here to the finish line. And this is pretty much a dream final. What, you know, what you and I would have envisioned outside of the U.S. making it to here.
ALEXI LALAS, FOX SPORTS: This is — this is Christmas come early, all right. And I’m not talking about a stocking stuffer, all right. This is a big old present under the tree when you have Argentina versus France. With Argentina, Messi trying to check that box of winning a World Cup and in the twilight of his career, but playing as good as we have seen him play in years. And then, on the other side, kind of the future in Kylian Mbappe and France.
Now, keep in mind that a team has not won consecutive men’s World Cups in 60 years. So that’s what France is doing, and, with Kylian Mbappe, to possibly win two World Cups before the age of 24.
So, what — it doesn’t matter what side you are on, this is delectable.
BREAM: So, you talk about the – the back-to-back wins if France pulls this off. Again, hasn’t been done since Brazil did it back for the men’s teams in `58 and `62. What would it mean, Alexi, to their — their legacy to do it? How hard would it be to pull it off and what do you think the odds are today?
LALAS: Well, I mean, just with the history that you – that you mentioned, obviously, in and of itself, it says how difficult it is. And not only difficult, but when you win a men’s World Cup, what history has shown is that it’s not only difficult to win another one, but even to actually get out of the group. And so that they have not missed a beat and they have changed some of the – some of the players, there’s still some usual suspects that were there for years ago. I actually think when it comes to France in this final, that the pressure is on Argentina. The pressure is on Messi. All of the Argentine fans are going to be there. It’s going to be kind of a home game for Argentina. France can kind of just sit back with a, you know, a smoke and a pinot noir and –
STONE: And a baguette.
LALAS: You know, a baguette and just kind of let it come to them as not necessarily the underdogs, but I just don’t think that they have the pressure. Evenly with the 60 years. And they don’t care about Messi. They don’t care about his legacy or his history. They are going, listen, we’re going to win two consecutive and do something like you said, that hasn’t been done in a long time.
STONE: I think you’re talking – we’re talking dynasty right now.
LALAS: Yes. Oh, absolutely.
STONE: You know, this is the fourth men’s World Cup final in the last seven World Cups that France will be participating in. I mean that is unheard of, you know.
STONE: And, right now. France has that opportunity to say, we are one of the absolute world powers. You know, the conversations always would involve a Germany, an Italy, a Brazil. France right now is saying, no, we’re number one on the planet right now, have been for a while, and look forward to that continuing as well.
BREAM: OK, so, what does it mean then for Messi if he can pull this off? What does it mean to his legacy and the comparisons to Maradona? I mean, Rob, can he pull that off? Any chance?
STONE: Yes, he can pull it off, of course, because he’s Lionel Messi, he’s a GOAT. We’ve had this GOAT conversation the last couple of days. He’s about to get angry here because I look at it more as a – I’m a goat herder, right? I think we can bring a lot of goats into my little farm. And Pele is a GOAT. And Diego Maradona’s a GOAT. Lionel Messi is a GOAT. I am fine being the goat herder, having them all here.
Alexi says there’s only one goat. And if Messi can’t win the World Cup, he does not belong in Rob Stone’s goat farm. Did I read that correctly?
LALAS: It’s – it’s GOAT. It stands for Greatest Of All Time.
STONE: I know it’s singular.
LALAS: Like, greatest.
STONE: Apostrophe s.
LALAS: Why do I have to explain this to you every single day.
STONE: It’s just GOATs, GOATs. We all wanted GOATs.
LALAS: All right, this is – this is what we – this is what we do.
Look, the debate will continue, but for a lot of people, I’m telling you right now, if he wins today, if he checks that box of a World Cup, they’re going to say, it’s done, the greatest to absolutely ever play the game. You mentioned Maradona. Look, I have Maradona in my heart. He moves me in a different way then Messi does. I will still debate and I will still argue, even if Messi were to win it here. If he doesn’t win it, that’s really what’s going to be ultimately interesting. And, you know, how does that debate shaped up going forward as to who the best is?
But, look, the best is, I can’t tell you – tell you, Shannon, who the best is anymore than I can tell you what the best food is or the best music or the best art or the best looking person. It’s personal preference who you ultimately feel. And there’s a lot of people out there that regardless of what happens today say that Lionel Messi is the best player ever to play the game.
STONE: GOATs, plural, it solves the problem. Just multiple GOATs.
BREAM: Oh, right, right. So, yes –
LALAS: You can’t change it. You can’t change it. Listen, the GOAT –
STONE: Watch me. Watch me change it.
LALAS: Oh, my.
BREAM: Rob – Rob has got a farm with multiple GOATs.
BREAM: Alexi will have a farm with one GOAT. That is how your farm – OK, we’ll come visit the farms.
LALAS: There we go.
BREAM: We’ll see what happens.
STONE: And what GOAT – what – what farm is going to do better, one GOAT or three GOTAs. My GOAT wins over – my farm beats your farm every day. Every day.
BREAM: Is it the greatests (ph) of all time.
LALAS: My one GOAT farm, man, that’s is – that’s going to be – they don’t need a lot of land.
BREAM: OK. Let’s talk — let’s talk about the U.S., though. Aside from just experienced, over the next four years what does the U.S. team need to do in terms of changes, positioning, training, whatever it is to not only get back into the World Cup, but to have a chance at something as amazing as a final game?
STONE: Well, I think a lot of the steps are – have been taking place years ago. And, obviously, that momentum needs to continue. We need to get greater depth. We need to find a center forward.
But we have confidence. And – and if you talk to some of the players that were here, the Christian Pulisics of the world, the Weston McKennies, they were saying how valuable this time was here in Qatar for them to kind of lay that foundation, to start those building blocks, you know, making that – that pyramid to rise up to the level were France and Argentina are right now. And that’s necessary to have that strong, solid base.
And I think the U.S. has that and it is growing. And they do have four years. And also there is the pressure of knowing that they are one of the co-hosts. And the administration, the people behind the scenes are going to want to find every single talent out there, do whatever they can to nurture them, to mature them, to get them to be at a point where they can – we can be talking about them today, on a Sunday of a World Cup final, rather than, by, I hope in four years down the road we can do something.
LALAS: Look, I know we want to win a men’s World Cup. And eventually it will happen. I hope it happens in – in my lifetime. I think that we should be incredibly bullish going forward in this next four years. Faith — not blind faith, but definitely having faith in this team that we saw play here in Qatar. They’re going to be four years older. There’s incredible depth. There is incredible talent. And there’s incredible opportunity.
OK, I’m sitting here in Doha talking to you because of the 1994 World Cup. It changed my life forever and it changed soccer forever, as did the 1999 women’s World Cup.
In 2026, the world is coming back to a U.S. that has a completely different sports and soccer landscape. So it’s the opportunity there on the field and off the field to again drive that sport forward. And nothing drives it forward quicker and better than winning. Americans love winners. We win in a lot of different things. From our women’s team, we are the best in the world. From our men’s team, we are yet – we have yet to reach it. What better time than in 2026 when the world comes back to the United States, with our friends to the north up in Canada and our friends to the south down in Mexico and host the greatest spectacle on God’s green earth.
STONE: And `94 was that igniter for soccer, for men’s soccer in the United States. And I think what’s going to be awesome is all the fans coming from across the world who were there in `94 and then they come back in 2026 and their eyes are going to open and say, my goodness, this dynamic, this landscape of soccer in this country, in this region of the world, has changed dramatically.
LALAS: You mentioned the uniter. I mean we saw – we’re kind of in a bubble over here in Doha. We started to see the pictures, and I know you were there and saw it too about people in the street, people in the bars, people in their living rooms coming together. And as you know –
STONE: People in class.
LALAS: But there’s — there very little that unites us as America.
LALAS: And that soccer did it, and the World Cup did it, that our U.S. team did it, that warmed the cockles of my redheaded American heart and I can’t wait to see it continue on into 2026.
STONE: We were getting videos, Shannon, you and I both, of our kids in class. Like, dad, dah, dah, dah, watching the game right here. And the visual is, every kid is kind of sneaking it underneath his desk, or some of the teachers – and, again, teachers now are one of us, right?
STONE: They are soccer fans. That didn’t happen a generation or two ago. And they’re just saying, forget English today. It’s up on the whiteboard. We’re watching the game. This is kind of our — our new civic duty.
STONE: We saw the planes where every monitor in the plane as you’re walking down was just watching the World Cup games. That is growth. And it’s going to continue over the next four years.
LALAS: You don’t have to be a soccer fan to love soccer.
BREAM: No. And – and a day like today makes it so exciting, as I said, for billions around the world to watch. I love that you’re bullish on the U.S. men’s team. Between the bulls and the GOATs, we have a whole farm to talk about and hopefully it’s all USA in 2026.
STONE: She likes the parallel. She likes the parallel.
BREAM: Alexi Lalas, Rob Stone, thank you guys so much. Have a fantastic time. Congrats on your excellent coverage. We’ll see you shortly.
STONE: Thank you.
LALAS: Thank you.
BREAM: All right, we’re going to take a poll here. Who’s Argentina? Who’s France? Stick around. The game is coming up.
That’s it for today. Thank you for joining us. I’m Shannon Bream. Have a great week. We’ll see you next FOX NEWS SUNDAY.
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