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NEW DAY

New Bipartisan Push on Immigration in Congress; Dems: GOP Memo Full of 'Mischaracterizations'; Philly Celebrates After Eagles Super Bowl Win. Aired 7-7:30a ET

Aired February 5, 2018 - 07:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


REP. PETE AGUILAR (D), CALIFORNIA: This is an incredibly urgent situation. So as we lead up into March, we need to make sure we offer the stability and certainty that these young people need, because they represent what I would view as the American dream.

[07:00:15] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Congressman Aguilar, thanks so much for being on NEW DAY.

AGUILAR: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: And thanks to our international viewers for watching. For you CNN NEWS ROOM is next. For our U.S. viewers, NEW DAY continues right now.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA), RANKING MEMBER, INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: The interest wasn't oversight. This was a political hit job of the FBI in the service of the president.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They've got a warrant on someone in the Trump campaign using opposition research paid for by the Democratic Party. That's what this is about.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it really underscores just how partisan Mr. Nunes has been. He has abused the office of the chairmanship.

REP. TREY GOWDY (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: This memo has, frankly, nothing at all to do with special counsel.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I never felt that the president was going to fire the special counsel.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For the Philadelphia Eagles, the long drought is over.

TOM BRADY, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS QUARTERBACK: Losing sucks, but sometimes you lose, and that's the way it goes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The city of Philadelphia deserves this, and we're happy to deliver.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.

CAMEROTA: Is it getting any easier, John Berman?

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: It was an incredible game, but it's a dagger in my heart every time we have to see those replays.

CAMEROTA: I know, guys. Just keep this over there. Keep those handy.

Good morning, everyone. Welcome to your NEW DAY. Chris is off. John Berman has pulled himself together for the moment to join me. Thank you.

BERMAN: I'm all here.

CAMEROTA: Thank you for being here. It's an important morning.

Democrats are pushing to release their rebuttal to that controversial GOP memo. The House Intelligence Committee is expected to vote today. Will Republicans on that committee vote in favor of transparency?

BERMAN: Meantime, President Trump claims that this memo vindicates him in the Russian investigation. But now some Republican lawmakers are distancing themselves from the president, saying the memo does not undermine the Mueller investigation.

We have this all covered for you this morning. Let's begin with CNN's Kaitlan Collins live at the White House.

Good morning, Kaitlan.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, John, the president spent the weekend here at the White House insisting that that Republican memo vindicates him in the Russia investigation. But on Capitol Hill, his fellow Republicans are outright rejecting that claim and actually seeking to distance themselves from the president's position.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the aisle, Democrats are hoping to persuade the House Intelligence Committee to release a memo of their own.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SCHIFF: The interest wasn't oversight. The interest was a political hit job on the FBI in the service of the president.

COLLINS (voice-over): Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee demanding the release of their rebuttal to the controversial GOP memo alleging FBI surveillance abuse, arguing that the Republican document is incomplete and full of mischaracterizations.

REP. DEVIN NUNES (R-CA), CHAIRMAN, INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: They've got a warrant on someone in the Trump campaign using opposition research paid for by the Democratic Party and the Hillary Clinton campaign. That's what this is about. REP. JIM HIMES (D), CONNECTICUT: What we will learn is that it is not

true that this FISA warrant was awarded solely on the basis of the Steele dossier. We will also learn that the FBI, because they are very careful people, didn't mislead the judge.

COLLINS: The Senate minority leader urging the president to support the release of Ranking Member Schiff's memo, saying that blocking the release will confirm the American people's worst fears, that the Republican memo "was only intended to undermine Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation."

Mr. Trump himself taking a victory lap, insisting that the GOP memo totally vindicates him in the Russia probe, an idea rejected by multiple Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee.

REP. CHRIS STEWART (R), UTAH: This memo has, frankly, nothing at all to do with special counsel.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think this is a separate issue.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The memo isn't about the special counsel's investigation.

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS: So you don't agree with President Trump when he says this vindicates him in the entire Russia investigation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't.

COLLINS: Even Congressman Trey Gowdy, who helped draft the memo, defending Mueller's investigation.

GOWDY: There is a Russia investigation without a dossier. The dossier has nothing to do with the meeting in Trump Tower.

COLLINS: The president's son, who is at the center of the firestorm over the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting, with Russian promising dirt on Clinton, applauding the memo.

TRUMP JR.: There is a little bit of sweet revenge in it for me and certainly probably the family in the sense that, if they wouldn't have done this, this stuff would be going on.

COLLINS: The No. 2 Democrat in the Senate warning Republicans against using the document to fire the man heading the Russian investigation.

DURBIN: To say that that's the end of the investigation, that this is all Donald Trump needs to fire Rosenstein or to fire Bob Mueller, I'll just tell you, this could precipitate a constitutional crisis.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COLLINS: Now John and Alisyn, the White House maintains that Rod -- Rod Rosenstein's job is not on the line here. But the president, who is traveling to Ohio later today to speak at a manufacturing plant, still has not said whether or not he has confidence in the deputy attorney general since he told reporters to figure it out on Friday.

CAMEROTA: OK, Kaitlan, thank you very much.

Let's discuss it. We want to bring in CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin and CNN political analyst Jeff...

JOHN AVLON, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Whatever my name is.

CAMEROTA: You're John Avlon.

BERMAN: Larry Avlon.

CAMEROTA: You're Larry Avlon.

Great to have you both.

So listen, that Trey Gowdy did this weekend yesterday was really surprising and striking. And we should play it again. Because not only does he seem to be somehow undermining the memo that he was involved in, the Republican House Intel Memo, but also the dossier on which they're pinning all of their case that the president should be vindicated.

So let's just listen in full to what Congressman Trey Gowdy said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOWDY: The dossier has nothing to do with the meeting in Trump Tower. The dossier has nothing to do with an e-mail sent by Cambridge Analytica. The dossier really has nothing to do with George Papadopoulos's meeting in Great Britain. It also doesn't have anything to do with obstruction of justice. So there's going to be a Russia probe even without a dossier.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: What do you think, Jeffrey Toobin?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN CHIEF LEGAL ANALYST: Have we reached such a degraded state that when a Republican just simply tells the truth, it's a huge news story?

CAMEROTA: Probably.

TOOBIN: Well, it may be. But I mean...

CAMEROTA: I mean, partisan. I wouldn't say Republican, but partisan. It meant something.

TOOBIN: Just think -- well, now, I would say Republicans, because this is a situation where the Republicans have -- have been standing by Trump, regardless of whatever crazy thing he says.

Now finally, yesterday, it was so excessive. I mean, what Trump said was so ridiculous, that this memo in validates the Russia investigation and discredits the entire FBI, that -- that we saw some pushback from House members. But, I mean, all they're doing is telling the truth.

AVLON: Yes. But I mean, you know, that should not have the quality of revelation in today's Congress, but it does.

TOOBIN: Well, there you go.

AVLON: But also because Gowdy was being used by Nunes as basically a fig leaf. Saying, "Look, you know, I may not have seen all the underlying, but my colleague, Trey Gowdy, did who's got, you know, perfect credentials from the conservative movement."

And then Trey Gowdy comes out, and he throws out the talking points. He basically just stomps on them. And that's a big deal, because he delineates really clearly that, dossier or not, folks, this investigation is going forward, and it should.

BERMAN: It just seemed to me to show a different view of what this memo is. The White House -- the president clearly thinks it vindicates it. He wrote it in a statement that he provided to America.

And what Trey Gowdy did there was just he opens this gate, this toll booth and says, "Unh-uh, pal. There is all of this other stuff out there."

And let me just -- I want to move on to a different subject here, Jeffrey, because I think it's also interesting about what the dossier does -- or the memo, I should say, does and doesn't do here.

You know, Carter Page is the central actor in this. Carter Page, the central actor, all of a sudden someone that Republicans care so deeply about after they run him down for a year and a half. Just listen to what people have said about Carter Page.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Carter Page is an individual who the president- elect does not know.

KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO DONALD TRUMP: He's not part of our security of foreign policy briefings that we do now at all.

COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN CHAIR: To the best of my recollection, I don't know Carter Page. To the best of my knowledge, Carter Page never had a Donald Trump dot com e-mail address, had no formal role in the campaign that I'm aware of.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I don't think I've ever spoken to him. I don't think I've ever met him.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BERMAN: Now he cares a lot about Mr. Page.

AVLON: Yes. BERMAN: You know, it is interesting, Jeffrey. And Carter Page had left the campaign, whatever contact he had with the campaign, he had left a month before they got this FISA warrant. So to the extent that the president wants to say that the Democrats were clearly investigating my campaign, it's just not true.

TOOBIN: You would almost think that this whole attack on the FBI is just a pretext and bogus and not -- and not based on any reality that it's purported to be.

Look, you know, I think the president has succeeded here. Because he has created now an atmosphere of controversy around this investigation. And most people who don't follow these issues very closely. They think, oh, well, a lot of people think Mueller's investigation is not legitimate.

And you know, when you have the megaphone of the White House, when you have the megaphone of the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, you can create a controversy where none exists, and that's what's been -- megaphone of the White House, when you have the mega phone of the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, you can create a controversy where none exists. And that's what's been done.

AVLON: Transparently with the purpose of muddying the waters, of creating doubt, of further polarizing so we can't agree on a common set of facts.

But there's something darkly funny about the fact that Carter Page is now being used by the conservatives as a proxy for the American people. You know, his civil liberties were denied and yours could, too. Because what subsequently come out undercuts any claim to that. I mean, you know, "TIME" magazine reporting in 2013, Carter Page, was shopping a note around saying I'm honored to be an adviser to the Kremlin. We know that, you know, he was on intelligence services' radar for a long time.

CAMEROTA: They were already interviewing him. They knew -- the FBI was already interviewing Carter Page because of the 2013 connection. The idea that this dossier is what got him the FISA warrant and what got him surveilled. That's also been proven not true.

[07:10:03] TOOBIN: You don't have to be John Le Carre to think that if a guy says, "I represent the Kremlin," and then he later shows up advising someone who may well be president of the United States, maybe it's worth investigating this guy.

CAMEROTA: Listen, this is there we go, there we go again on vetting. I mean, the interesting thing here is that the Trump campaign doesn't seem to have known that Carter Page had -- or maybe they did. Maybe this is why they liked him. This is what he had been trumpeting. He had been trumpeting -- pardon the pun -- his connections to the Kremlin.

AVLON: Yes. And the overall appearance of someone who's sort of a caricature of a useful idiot in the original Ruskin (ph) sense. You know, who's sort of bumbling around, you know, trading access and the appearance of influence without being taken seriously by anybody. But there's something terribly nefarious going on underneath.

TOOBIN: Having seen Carter Page's interviews with Anderson Cooper and others, I'm not sure how useful. But idiot may really describe this guy. I mean, it's just bizarre.

BERMAN: So two things to look for this week. No. 1., this Democratic rebuttal. The House Intelligence Committee votes on it today at 5 p.m. The president has to decide what to do there. You know, Republicans actually will be on the defensive here. They have to prove they're as transparent as they're claiming they want to be here. Sooner or later, I suspect we'll see this Democratic memo.

And then Jeffrey, the other thing -- and again, I think the timing here is fascinating. Sometime in the next week or two, we're going to learn if the president is going to sit down with Robert Mueller's investigators or at least get a status: where do these negotiations stand?

TOOBIN: I think it's very up in the air. I think the people around the president, his lawyers really want to avoid this as much as possible. They know that this is the president, according to "The Washington Post," who has told more than 2,000 lies since he took office. You don't want someone like that in a position where they are legally libel if they tell a lie.

But the president has also said he wants to cooperate. The polls show people want him to answer questions.

CAMEROTA: If he doesn't, can't Mueller subpoena him?

TOOBIN: He could. But that would lead to a lengthy legal fight. And it's not clear what the result would be. It's -- it's -- a president is not completely immune from having to testify in a civil case, in a criminal case.

But the circumstances and the amount of background, and how much time and all of that is very much up for grabs. I suspect some deal will be made, but it's going to be torturous negotiation.

BERMAN: All right. Guys. Thanks very much.

We're going to move on now to the other story of the morning.

Wild celebrations in the City of Brotherly Love. Philadelphia Eagles fans taking to the streets to mark their first ever Super Bowl title. It was an amazing game, 41-33 over the defending champion New England Patriots.

CNN's Alex Marquardt in downtown Philadelphia with more - - Alex.

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, John, people are waking up and heading to work after this historic celebration. Many of them, I imagine with some pretty nasty hangovers this morning.

This was the heart of those celebrations last night. Thousands of people gathering in front of city hall. And if you look in the streets, the city has actually done a very good job at cleaning it up. You can hardly tell that there were these massive parties going on last night.

Now, after this historic win, the mayor of Philadelphia called on the residents of the city to go forth and celebrate but do so in a way that will make Philadelphia shine. And for the most part, that's what happened. This was a party where tens of thousands poured into the streets, shouting, chanting, drinking.

But this being Philadelphia, it was always going to be a rowdy party. And as the night wore on, it got more and more raucous. We saw people climbing on top of bus stops, pulling down light poles. They smashed the windows from a Macy's right around the corner from here. Some people flipped a car over.

And John and Alisyn, I want to show you one of the most dramatic scenes. And I think we've gotten the video of the actual incident. Half a dozen people climbed on top of the awning of the Ritz-Carlton right here, and it collapsed. And this is the aftermath. This twisted pile of metal. You can see how flimsy it was. And of course if anybody gets on top, of course that is going to fall apart.

Now, we understand that across the city there were a number of injuries. The city also telling us this morning that there were three people arrested. But reminding people that they are bad actors. That by and large, the festivities last night went very well.

The cleanup effort continues today. You can still see a bit of effort to be done ahead of the victory parade expected to be held this week. More details to be coming out today -- Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: That video was incredible. That was kind of like a mosh pit that happened outside of the Ritz there, with people crowd surfing.

So thank you, Alex, for that.

MARQUARDT: They were very excited.

CAMEROTA: I could tell. Thank you very much for all that.

The Eagles, of course, have been the underdogs throughout the playoffs, but they never backed down, going toe to toe with Tom Brady and the Patriots to win their first ever Super Bowl.

John is ignoring me at this point.

Coy Wire has highlights of the big game in "The Bleacher Report," live from Minneapolis. Coy, how are you?

[07:15:05] COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: I can't feel myself, but I'm OK.

Hey, Alisyn, the biggest takeaway for me in this game was that we discovered there's something that John Berman's man crush, Tom Brady, can't do. He tried to catch a pass, and he dropped it. Was this the wildest game in NFL history? Over 15 records were broken

in this one, including coldest game ever. Most yards in an NFL game, Super Bowl or not.

Now, the Eagles quarterback Nick Foles, he tried to catch a pass, too, but he caught his for a touchdown, no less. Incredible plays in this game. And you're talking about a guy, Nick Foles, who's so respected by his teammates. He takes grad school seminary classes in the off- season. He wants to be a high school pastor someday. How could you not cheer for a guy like that, from backup Q.B. earlier in the system, to Super Bowl MVP. I caught up with him after the game.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

NICK FOLES, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES QUARTERBACK: Just to be a part of this and be part of the Philadelphia Eagles organization and to be a part of the first world championship, we're very blessed. It's an unbelievable feeling. And I men, honestly right now, it's all soaking in. It's unbelievable.

DOUG PEDERSON, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES COACH: The resiliency of the football team. Our character really shone through tonight. I'm so happy for our players.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WIRE: The underdogs all season. I found our boy Jake Tapper one of these underdog masks that the players have been using all season long. I'll have to find a way to get him that. He probably has one, two, or 20 of them.

John Berman, I'm sorry for your loss. It was an incredible game and a storied game.

BERMAN: Philadelphia was better. You know, Philadelphia was just better over the 60 minutes. No question about it.

CAMEROTA: Very big of you.

BERMAN: And Jake will wear that hat with his football pants and nothing else like he likes to do.

CAMEROTA: On his show today? OK, that is a tease right there. That's great. Coy, thank you very much.

BERMAN: All right. President Trump claims that he has been totally vindicated by the Republican memo. Lawmakers on both sides see it a little bit differently. We'll discuss next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[07:21:26] CAMEROTA: Lawmakers on both sides taking issue with President Trump's claim that the Nunes memo exonerates him in the Russia investigation. The president tweeting, "This memo totally vindicates Trump in probe. But the Russian witch-hunt goes on and on. There was no collusion, and there was no obstruction. The word now used because after one year of looking endlessly and finding nothing, collusion is dead. This is an American disgrace."

Let's discuss all of this with Bill Kristol, editor of "The Weekly Standard," and Ben Ferguson, CNN political commentator.

Bill, you cannot talk about the Super Bowl. I know that's what you think you're here to talk about. But no, I'm stopping that right now. We're talking about this.

Ben, did that memo that you read, crafted by Devin Nunes, vindicate the president?

BEN FERGUSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think, certainly, for a lot of people it's going to at least show what the White House has said, which is this is an investigation that has gone after President Trump on a personal level. And it also shows really using the words of people involved in going after Trump that there was a bias against him.

CAMEROTA: How? I mean, how? Can you give me some specifics? How in this memo does it show that there's -- that the FISA court is biased?

FERGUSON: Well, I think the way that they got this warrant is a clear example. There was a lot of information omitted about, one, where did this -- where did this come from, this dossier on the president?

Who was behind it? Who was backing it? Who was paying for it? That information from the memo that we've read shows that, obviously, there were people that were going into that FISA court that knew that, if they shared total transparency on all the information that they had gathered and who was behind it and where it was coming from, I don't think they would have been able to get this FISA court warrant to actually go after Carter Page.

CAMEROTA: I mean, obviously, Bill, if you believe that this is the whole fulsome account that they did not disclose, that the funding from the dossier came from the DNC and the Clinton campaign.

However, as you know, the Democrats are hoping to release this week their rebuttal, because they say that there's more to this story.

BILL KRISTOL, EDITOR, "THE WEEKLY STANDARD": But even so, it has nothing to do with the Mueller investigation. It's an actual investigation. People are testifying under oath. We've learned a lot in through the course of the investigation and in the course of the previous FBI investigation.

Now, unless the Trump position is the whole thing is legitimate, then...

CAMEROTA: That is his position.

KRISTOL: That is his position. And that is the key point people are forgetting. There's a kind of forest and trees problem here. We get distracted by the memo, the smoke, the muddying of the waters. Trump hates this investigation. He wants to shut it down. I think the reason he wants to shut it down is it's nice to him, it's

distracting from his presidency. If it's not so nice to him, he's scared of what it's going to find.

And he is using this as a pretext for laying the groundwork to rally people -- to support shutting it down. The tweet you read is very important. He says it's a witch-hunt. What do you do about witch hunts? You don't just sort of say, "Hey, this witch hunt is a little unfair, because this part of the witch hunt isn't properly sourced." You say witch hunts should be stopped.

The other part of the tweet, it's a different tweet, says senior levels, the DOJ and FBI are out to get me or it's illegitimate. I can't remember what word he uses. But something like that.

If you have an investigation going on that's a disgrace to the country and you're president of the United States, what's your obligation. Not to support a memo; to stop it. That's what he wants to do. That's what he's planning to do.

And I think Congress needs to stop obsessing about his memos and worry about protecting the Mueller investigation.

CAMEROTA: You think they need actual legislation to protect it?

KRISTOL: I would look at it. They at least rhetorically -- senior Republicans need to stand up and say it is unacceptable to fire Rosenstein; it is unacceptable to fire Mueller. It's unacceptable to hamper the investigation. You should urge people working for him to cooperate with the investigation. I think there can be a lot of developments in the next few weeks.

FERGUSON: Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Yes. Go ahead, Ben.

FERGUSON: There's been no indication that those that have been interviewed at the White House in the Mueller investigation have not been fully cooperating. There has been a ton of speculation that the president wants to shut this down, is going to try to shut this down. The bottom line is, he hasn't fired the people that you would need to fire to shut them down.

[07:25:10] CAMEROTA: No, but he does keep tweeting about how he has no faith in them and they're not to be trusted.

KRISTOL: What do you mean, he's trying to cover...

FERGUSON: Let me finish. Let me finish. It's OK to have an opinion, as the president of the United States of America, when this has dragged on for more than a year and there has not been anyone that's been charged with any issues of collusion.

CAMEROTA: They have been charged.

FERGUSON: There are people who are saying that the president is obsessed with wanting to fire these people. The fact is he has not fired them, and there doesn't seem to be any plan to fire them.

KRISTOL: OK. So people like you -- people like you --

FERGUSON: The president is trying to go over the top when, in fact, he is not. They acted honorably in this investigation.

CAMEROTA: Bill, your response?

KRISTOL: His supporters should make clear it is unacceptable to fire Rosenstein and fire Mueller. It's unacceptable to rally Republicans to delegitimize the senior leadership of the FBI and DOJ, what if they got something wrong on one FISA application?

FERGUSON: Asking questions -- asking questions is not delegitimizing, Bill.

KRISTOL: Was that a Trump tweet? Was that a Trump tweet? Was that a question -- you had a question...

FERGUSON: Let me finish. Let me finish.

You have, Bill, people at the FBI on the record in their own words who talked about, one, not liking the president, two, possibly needing an insurance...

CAMEROTA: Yes, you're talking about -- you know what, Ben...

FERGUSON: Three, having possibly a secret society.

CAMEROTA: You know what, Ben? Yes, go ahead.

KRISTOL: Are we seriously -- are we seriously still talking about the secret society, Ben?

CAMEROTA: I want to bring this up, because...

FERGUSON: In their own words. Not mine.

CAMEROTA: Hold on. Listen.

FERGUSON: In their words. I their own words.

KRISTOL: This is what I mean. Are you asking...

CAMEROTA: Hold on.

KRISTOL: Are you asking questions or are you throwing out a lot of mud -- throwing a lot of mud to get...

FERGUSON: If you have a problem with what they're saying, then why don't you ask -- why don't you look at the fact that these people put this in their own text messages, which they had no intent for the American people to ever see?

CAMEROTA: Here's the larger point, which is that there -- folks like you and other Republicans do seem to be bringing up a lot of what you say are really pressing issues that other people think are distractions. Some -- I mean, we put them in quotes as scandals. Let me just go through them, because it's hard to remember with this hyper charged news cycle all the things.

But here are the things that Republicans have fastened on. The mysterious Nunes memo and that it would show that the president was vindicated. It's not done that.

The lost texts -- remember those, Ben -- between what you're taking about, the between agent Strzok and Page. They were found days later. That was going to be a huge scandal.

FERGUSON: We found them.

CAMEROTA: And the FBI's secret society.

KRISTOL: Let me say something. Just think about what Ben's saying. He's doing his best to defend the president. He's saying that the FBI is an entirely corrupt organization. They purposely -- he was implying...

FERGUSON: That's not what I said at all.

KRISTOL: Well, he's implying. Let me finish the sentence, Ben.

FERGUSON: That's not what I said.

KRISTOL: Let me finish the sentence. He just implied, "Oh, they -- that's maybe why -- maybe why they found them, because of the pressure." You're implying that the FBI purposely lost the texts and found them because of political pressure. There are a bunch people at the FBI not one or two.

FERGUSON: That's not what I'm saying.

KRISTOL: Well, do you think the texts were just innocently lost?

FERGUSON: Bill -- Bill, let me be clear about this.

KRISTOL: Just say it. Say it.

FERGUSON: I come from a law enforcement family.

KRISTOL: Say it.

FERGUSON: My father's in law enforcement.

Here's what I know, Bill. And listen clearly, because you're putting words in my mouth of things I never, ever said. So listen to me.

My father is in law enforcement. The majority of people at the FBI, the majority of people at the Department of Justice I think do a good job.

It is also incredibly naive to assume, after seeing the words of people at the FBI in their own text messages and at the Department of Justice...

CAMEROTA: Yes?

FERGUSON: ... that everyone is perfect.

CAMEROTA: How can you say that, Ben?

FERGUSON: And there is a bias by some, key word some people, some people can be biased against the president.

KRISTOL: Do you think -- do you think the FBI is...

FERGUSON: It's not un-American or it's not insane for me to ask questions about the intent of the individuals going after the president.

CAMEROTA: But -- go ahead, Bill.

KRISTOL: Look, the asking questions -- the asking questions dodge is obviously a dodge. You just implied that they purposely tried -- that they tried...

FERGUSON: It's not a dodge. It's being honest.

CAMEROTA: Listen, Ben, here's -- we've been down this road. OK? So we know that there were two people who had a bias. They were...

FERGUSON: The road matters, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Hold on. They were, as you know, redirected. They lost their jobs. OK.

FERGUSON: As they should.

KRISTOL: You don't know that. You don't know that. You shouldn't slander people that you don't know all the facts about.

FERGUSON: It's not slandering. I looked at their own words, Bill.

KRISTOL: Do you believe, based on what you know on the very limited amount you know about these two particular agents you know not at all, you can confidently assert they should lose their jobs? Is that the way you make -- is that the way law enforcement should work, then?

FERGUSON: Bill, if you were under -- Bill, if you were under investigation by somebody in the government, and their own words came out showing extreme bias against you, talking about an insurance policy in case you're elected; you're running for office. And then on top of that, talking about the fact that you might need a secret society, you're telling me...

CAMEROTA: Ben, this is the point.

FERGUSON: ... you wouldn't bring that up every single day?

CAMEROTA: People would say secret society -- as you know, senator Ron Johnson, who had fastened on the secret society, then later said that he did think that it was facetious.

So Ben, do you think that the -- all of these things are scandals or do you think that these are welcome distractions?

FERGUSON: Let me say this. All I'm saying is one thing. Every conversation that we're talking about right now, the problem is the people that were involved in the investigation are the ones that said this. It's not a conspiracy theory when I just read their text messages. I see their bias.