This is a rush transcript from “Your World,” April 30, 2021. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
NEIL CAVUTO, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: All right, this alert concerns you. How you feeling? How you doing?
Well, apparently, you are the more optimistic you have been now in the better part of a year-and-a-half, and you’re proving it by spending money. You have apparently cleaned up your bottom line, and you are ready to get your bottom off the chair and into the stores and clicking online.
Welcome, everybody. I’m Neil Cavuto, and this is, well, literally “Your World.” This is you doing these incredible things.
Just to put it in perspective, this and the week and the month we learned consumer spending was back, consumer incomes was back, car sales were back, retail sales were back, home activity like we have never seen before on both the existing and the new home sales front back with a vengeance, a good vengeance, a happy vengeance, a buyer’s market, to be sure, and, in some markets, a seller’s market to be feared.
But, but having said all of that, let me put this in perspective. The one big story of this entire month that ends today on a Wall Street that saw all the major averages move up was the story out of technology, the story out of Amazon, because I cannot stress this enough.
This figure should put in perspective exactly how well, well, we are doing, because we are buying. And we added to Amazon’s already booming sales. That company sold eight — $108 billion worth of goods in the first quarter, $108 billion in a quarter.
Now, I know you get numb hearing numbers, but that’s staggering. That’s staggering. I could talk to you about $47.9 billion worth of Apple iPhones sold in one quarter, or about $8 billion worth of iPads, or more than 900 – – $9 billion worth of Macs.
You get the picture here? You see what’s happening here? You see the steady stream of earnings that we’re getting out of corporate America that are proving you are making America hum? This isn’t about government spending. This is about you spending. This isn’t about optimism over whether the government will spend more.
This is over optimism that you will spend more. You are. You’re not doing it recklessly. You’re doing it very carefully and very diligently and very consistently.
So, we thought we would break away from the normal big drama politics on Capitol Hill to step back and look at you and appreciate what you’re doing coming out of the pandemic, and buying and hoping and proving that you have confidence in the future of this country, not based on who runs it or the politics about it, but on the economic foundations that, through good times and in bad, have supported it.
That’s why I want to immediately begin with Susan Li picking apart these numbers and what they are saying, I guess, Susan, about us.
SUSAN LI, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: You just put up some staggering numbers there, Neil.
So, we’re looking at near record stock markets, a booming housing market, and the fastest economic growth in 37 years. And, yes, American households are getting richer, despite COVID, so household incomes surging by over a fifth in March. That’s the biggest jump in history.
And that’s thanks to another round of $1,400 checks and government stimulus money. So, that means that the U.S. consumer is willing to open up their wallet once again, with confidence back up to pre-pandemic levels, and that means consumers are buying more.
So, that’s important, since the consumer powers more than two-thirds of the U.S. economy. And U.S. consumers are shopping more online these days, a lot of that money being spent at Amazon, as you just pointed out.
So, the company says that they will sell another $100 billion in the springtime, after its best three months of the year in its history, and over 200 million Prime members and counting.
Meantime, over at Apple, they reported their best March quarters in the company’s near 40-year history, selling more than a billion dollars each and every day during that time. And that includes the fastest iPhone sales in almost a decade and customers, as you pointed out, by Mac computers once again during the remote work and schooling trend, also paying more for their Apple Music care and Apple TV+.
Now, this week, we have the five biggest companies in America and essentially the biggest in the world with blockbuster sales, earnings and profit. One statistic that really says it all is that these five tech giants — we’re talking about the Apples, Microsoft, Amazon, Google Alphabet and Facebook — they sell more in any given week than McDonald’s does for the entire year, Neil.
And I think that’s a sign of strength in the U.S. economy and in America.
CAVUTO: I think you’re right.
But, Susan, I can’t carry McDonald’s alone. So, you’re going to have to help me out on that.
CAVUTO: But if you can stay, stay right where you are, because I want to join on something you have touched on, the propensity of Americans now to spend.
But here’s what’s remarkable, that younger people are getting into the act. We have been sort of fishing through the numbers. And the fact of the matter is, young people are more bullish on just plain spending and optimism for the future than they have been in quite some time.
Now, this is not a political development related to the present occupant of the White House, any more than it was the prior, but the trend and the optimism about the American economy. We can attribute blame, credit, whatever you want to say, on another show at another time, maybe actually on a whole ‘mother venue here.
But, for now, I want to explore this with Mike Gunzelman, the Internet radio host sensation, Hitha Herzog, H Squared Research retail watcher, and, again, as I said, Susan Li with us.
So, Gunz, I’m thinking of you, because when I read these numbers–
CAVUTO: — about young people who up to now had been reluctant to spend, well, now you’re no longer reluctant. Does that describe you?
MIKE GUNZELMAN, FOX NEWS HEADLINES ENTERTAINMENT REPORTER: Absolutely, Neil.
It’s — I urge everyone to kind of just sit back and inhale and breathe it in, because that smell is spring fever. And it’s happening all across the board. I mean, just it’s a new era. It’s a new dawn. People are finally out of being stuck home for 14 months. And we want to spend money.
It’s not being whether you’re a millennial like me, to grandparents and more. Across all industries, sectors, age groups, there’s just something happening. We want to spend money, whether it’s been that we have been cooped up for the last year and have been dealing with anxiety or depression.
The best way to get out of that, Neil, is to buy things for yourself, to spend money. So, whether you’re a parent and your kid is now going back to school, and you’re buying him supplies, or your kids are playing sports again, camp is going to start up in a couple weeks, to even things like clothes — when’s the last time we bought clothes in the past year Neil?
Things like that, now that things are reopening, we want to make sure that we are — that we have the latest gadgets, that we have the latest clothes, that we are feeling alive once again. Americans are taking their lives back.
CAVUTO: All right.
GUNZELMAN: And it’s happening all across the board.
CAVUTO: So, I assume you have bought clothes, and that was your choice. So, OK.
CAVUTO: Hitha, let me get your take on this, because the bottom line is that Americans’ bottom line is improved, right?
They shored up their finances, saved a lot of money. Now the idea is that they’re all like coiled springs, and they’re going to go burst out into the — into shopping centers and malls, stores, online, offline. What do you think happens now?
HITHA HERZOG, H SQUARED RESEARCH: There’s certainly a lot of pent-up demand here, Neil.
But I want to point out, due to a study via Oracle, that people, especially millennials and Gen Z, were already shopping online. They were doing a lot of that into 2020 and now into 2021. Millennials, for example, shopped online 4.7 times more than they had in the past.
And to your point of the random things that they were buying on Amazon, check this out, fancy napkins, of all things. That was up 375 percent, gum up 185 percent. And, of course, you can’t forget the white cheddar and cheese puffs. You would — you wouldn’t even — I mean; they can’t make this stuff up. It was up 530 percent.
So, snack items, these are — yes, certainly, clothes, and people want to go out and buy the bigger things because they haven’t really dressed up that much.
CAVUTO: Right. Right.
HERZOG: But these little things, they have been shopping for, and it will continue.
CAVUTO: You know, I should point out, Susan Li — and I know this is near and dear to you — that, in food items, processed meats and cheeses were number eight–
CAVUTO: — on the list of things that people wanted to buy. So, I’m sure the economy can thank you for that.
CAVUTO: But what do you make, Susan? When you talk to people, young people, obviously, and you hear and get a sense of where they’re coming from, where are they right now, in this mind-set, coming out of the pandemic?
Coming out of the pandemic, people make the reference that we’re going to see the Roaring ’20s once again in 2021. Even you, I know, Neil, weren’t around then.
But, yes, there’s this sense of confidence and hope that, 2021, we could see the fastest growth rate — in fact, we have already seen it in the first three months of this year — the fastest economic growth rate since 1984.
And if we grow at, say, the 8 or 9 percent that Goldman Sachs is predicting for this year, that is your V-shaped recovery. And that’s also — by the way, that would be the fastest growth rate, and you would be growing faster than China since the ping-pong diplomacy days in the 1970s during the Mao era.
I find a lot of these statistics incredible, and, yes, the spending is happening.
And Tim Cook, I spoke to him this week on earnings. He says he’s seeing a lot of strength right here in the U.S., and that’s why Apple is willing to spend big right here in the economy.
CAVUTO: Yes, they’re going to be spending big in the future here.
And, Gunz, I understand that Apple, its products do not come cheap. But I’m told that young people like you don’t really care. You will pay premium for something you think is premium.
Is that true?
GUNZELMAN: Yes. Yes. I mean, we have a lot of money. There’s a couple things going on here.
First off, we have savings now, because nobody’s been commuting, nobody’s been going out for fancy dinners. People have been working remotely. So you have that money saved up, that along with the stimulus checks that have been coming in.
And, also, millennials especially, we have been investing. Things like the Robinhood app — I personally never even spent that much attention to the stock market.
CAVUTO: Ah, yes.
GUNZELMAN: But a lot of people — I’m in millennial chat groups and Facebook groups, Reddit groups, is more talking about investing.
CAVUTO: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.
What do you mean you haven’t been paying attention to the stock market? That’s all I have been doing. What are you–
GUNZELMAN: No, me personally. Well, I’m sorry, Neil.
CAVUTO: No, I got it.
GUNZELMAN: — about. I personally never knew what was happening.
CAVUTO: Oh, sure, sure.
GUNZELMAN: But now I’m investing. And I think a lot of millennials are too.
CAVUTO: Good to know.
GUNZELMAN: We have a lot of money, especially with the stimulus checks, that we can go out and spend that money.
GUNZELMAN: Forget the Roaring ’20s, Neil.
CAVUTO: Got it.
GUNZELMAN: It’s the roaring 2020s. And it’s happening right now for all of us.
CAVUTO: I understand.
No, it’s a very good point you’re making on your final visit to this show. So, thank you.
CAVUTO: Hitha — I’m joking. I’m joking.
Hitha, I don’t want to rain on the parade, but I’m worried about the tax hikes coming. I’m worried about all the spending that’s coming. And I’m not reassured when I hear people say, well, this is only for the crème de la crème, the upper 1 percent, the capital gains thing for the one-third of 1 percent.
I do know the history of tax hikes and how they reverberate. And, sometimes, it doesn’t end well. Is that a worry for you?
HERZOG: Well, certainly, tax hikes are a worry, but also rent. Rent is coming due very soon.
And you have to think about as well — I know Gunz likes to go out and spend and he’s all about spending. But for some of these millennials and some of these Gen Z’s they haven’t been paying rent. There’s been a rent halt.
So there’s that going on. There are certain bills. I know here, in New York City, Con Edison has halted paying your Con Edison bill because of the pandemic. That’s all coming back. So I don’t think people are taking that into consideration as well.
So while it may feel like the Roaring 2021s and let’s go spend, spend, spend, you’re absolutely right. There is going to be — I hate to use an old term, but they’re going to take away that punchbowl very soon and people are going to be left with a lot of debt, and they’re going to have to pay that back at some point.
CAVUTO: We will see.
HERZOG: So, I’m glad that everyone’s spending on napkins, but maybe want to take a step back for a minute and just analyze that a bit.
CAVUTO: Yes, that one — yes, that one floors me. I don’t understand that one.
But, guys, I want to thank you all very, very much.
GUNZELMAN: Thank you.
CAVUTO: And, Gunz, your welcome back, not on this show. But you’re certainly welcome back.
CAVUTO: Guys, thank you all.
I kid. I kid.
I want to bring my buddy Charles Payne in, a bestselling author, 2:00 p.m. on “Making Money” on his show, very, very popular. He steps way back and takes a look at the winners and the losers, not only stocks, but people.
And I think, Charles, one of the biggest winners of the week had to be Jeff Bezos, right? I mean, now, I know Amazon stock, which was a wild ride, has made him obviously a billionaire many times over and a worth over $200 billion, the richest man on the planet.
That’s a nice backdrop, huh?
CHARLES PAYNE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: It’s an amazing backdrop.
Not long ago, I was looking at photos when they first started. If you would have said they would they — what he has been able to create with his team now, it’s absolutely remarkable.
After the third quarter, he’s giving up the CEO role. He is going to be the chairman. And he’s going out on — just on a magnificent high that really is unparalleled.
Even when you go back to the robber barons and you start to adjust for inflation, there’s never been anyone quite like Jeff Bezos, and he’s young enough and he’s hungry enough to make his mark in other places. And I think that’s what he’s looking for next.
CAVUTO: So, it’s interesting. We talk about Amazon and the fact that he has embraced — I believe Tim Cook at Apple as well — these higher corporate rates that the president wants to push right now, to up the rate to 28 percent.
How would it impact these guys? I mean, would they be able to sell as much, do as much? That is generally the fear, that it’s going to limit how much they grow. What do you think?
PAYNE: Well, they’re trying to play the delicate dance. And we saw this also with President Trump, particularly with Tim Cook, who did it masterfully.
Let’s not forget, earlier this week, Apple put out a statement. And they said, in the last five years, no one, no corporation has paid more taxes they have. They talked about their five-year commitment, the jobs that they’re going to create. Amazon just said yesterday in their earnings report, we’re going to add another billion to how much we’re paying people.
So, they’re on something of an offensive as well. They don’t want — they don’t want taxes to go too high. They don’t want them to be prohibitively too high.
By the same token, it’s not — ultimately, these taxes won’t hurt Jeff Bezos. He’s got an army of everyone, accountants and lawyers and everyone. It’s going to hurt the person who comes and fixes his faucets. It’s going to hurt the small business owner.
And those business owners are going to have to pass the cost on the middle — to middle-class America. So, while they want us to be competitive — because these companies want to grow, right? They’re — when you get to a certain point, it’s not even necessarily about the numbers, per se, as long as your number one, as long as you’re growing.
Now, Bezos himself wants to be more than that, right? He’s looking now for his next venture, this Blue Origin thing.
PAYNE: He wants us to go that space. He wants Americans — he wants human beings, rather, to be able to go out into outer space and to mine and to build and put factories up there.
And we would stay on Earth and we will live this amazing, beautiful life without worrying about climate or anything, because all of that industrial stuff will be done somewhere out in the galaxy.
So he’s got some grand ambitions. I don’t think any of them want to see big government, with big taxes, more regulations, get in the way of any of that stuff.
CAVUTO: But if he doesn’t like it, again, he can take a rocket and just get the hell out of town.
CAVUTO: Charles Payne, great seeing you again, my friend, right?
PAYNE: You too. Thanks.
CAVUTO: I can’t tell you, Charles, the number of people who say, Neil, we want to put you into space.
CAVUTO: All right, thank you very much, a rock star, FOX Business Network. You don’t get it, you should demand it, 2:00 p.m. each day with my buddy Charles Payne.
When we come back, sorry, folks, the Mount Rushmore Fourth of July fireworks are canceled. So says the Biden administration.
The governor of South Dakota says, not so fast. Kristi Noem is next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. KRISTI NOEM (R-SD): To attempt to cancel the founding generation is an attempt to cancel our own freedoms.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA! USA! USA!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAVUTO: All right, that was then, a big fireworks celebration at Mount Rushmore.
Now, well, not really welcome now. The Biden administration doesn’t want to see it happen. And Governor Kristi Noem, who was speaking there, says, not so fast. She’s petitioning that move.
She joins us right now.
Governor, good to — good to have you.
Any reaction you have had from the Biden administration, Governor, on this?
NOEM: Well, from them, they told me they would circle back. But they have denied giving us our permits that we need to host this event.
And, for me, I’m incredibly disappointed, because it wasn’t based on anything significant. We had met all the environmental checklists. We had the go/no-go checklist prepared and agreed to. We had consulted with our tribes. It appears to be a very partisan and political denial of our right to host this fireworks event.
CAVUTO: Now, they were raising the issues last year, before President Trump decided to go, that there were brushfire worries and all.
But all of that was addressed then, right? They were ready in case something like that were to happen. So, why couldn’t they do it this year?
NOEM: And you’re exactly right, Neil.
We had a memorandum of agreement that we had already signed. All they had to do was give us the permits. And part of that memorandum of agreement said that anybody up until a couple of hours before the event could call off those fireworks if we thought there was any kind of fire danger.
So, we — that’s why you have a go/no-go checklist, is so that the local authorities, the state authorities, and the national authorities are all comfortable with moving forward with the event.
So, we had that all figured out. We had it all agreed to. When they denied us our permits, we were shocked, because it was not based on anything other than they just didn’t want us to do it.
CAVUTO: You know, I was wondering, too, as well, Governor, whether COVID could have been an issue, I know the distancing issue, all that other stuff. I don’t believe South Dakota ever had a mask requirement.
I assume you still don’t know. So, that — that was not a factor here, right?
NOEM: No, we never did have any kind of a mask mandate.
In fact, we were the only state in the country that never shut down any businesses or churches or had any mandates like that. In fact, when we hosted this event last year, we did not do social distancing. We gave out masks to anybody who wanted them to feel comfortable.
But we also told people, if they were scared of catching the virus, that they should stay home. And we did not have any spread due to that event. And we had 7,500 people there celebrating America, our founding fathers, that wonderful monument, and our nation’s independence.
So, we want to do that again this year. We think our country could use it. We could use a celebration and bring some unity to this country at a time when we need it so desperately. And we think it’d be a fantastic event. We’re very disappointed that this White House won’t let us do it.
CAVUTO: Let me switch gears, because there’s a move in Congress to stop the president’s big spending initiatives. That’s one thing.
But there’s a new effort on the part of Mitch McConnell to stop the president on another area, along with 37 Republican senators, trying to block The 1619 Project in schools that, as you know, reassesses American history through the prism of slavery, when it started in this country, and not to the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
What do you make of that?
NOEM: Well, The 1619 Project rewrites America’s history. In fact, as it rewrites our history, it makes America out to be the villain.
It’s wrong, and it does need to be stopped. So, I applaud those senators for writing to the administration, because we need to be teaching all of our children and our grandchildren that our founding fathers were incredible people who led us through challenging times.
Sure, they were flawed, but which — what of us have lived up to all of our ideals? But we can learn something from them. They’re a part of our history. And it really is what has kept America special.
Their contributions have been a part of the American Constitution, our foundation, and what has kept us free for hundreds of years.
CAVUTO: You know, Governor, you always are on these short lists of possible Republican presidential candidates. I’m sure you’re aware of that.
But I have noticed recently that a number of other prominent names being mentioned are bowing out if it looks like Donald Trump bows in and runs for the White House again, Nikki Haley among them and Marco Rubio.
Would your decision be based, if you ever came to that, Governor, of whether he was running again or not?
NOEM: You know, President Trump is one of the few people — there’s a few politicians that I have ever worked with that actually did what he said he was going to do.
I loved working with him because, when he committed to following through on something, he followed through. He was a great president for this country. We’re looking forward to his leadership in the future.
I’m focused on running for reelection for South Dakota, being their governor. I’m hopeful they will support me.
CAVUTO: So, when someone like a Chris Christie comes along, and says, oh, I will — essentially, I would run not based on whether Donald Trump was or wasn’t, do you think — what do you think of those who base their decision on that?
NOEM: Well, I think they’re getting ahead of themselves, honestly.
We have got a lot going on in this country right now. I like to watch people during challenging times, how they step up, lead and stick to their values and the principles that made this country great. That’s what I will be doing. President Trump has already proven himself to me.
So, these other folks, if they want to even be in the game, they better start following through on the things that they say they believe in.
CAVUTO: All right, so when it comes to entertaining any other position, would you be open to a vice presidential selection? The president was asked about Ron DeSantis, the Florida governor.
I don’t know if that could happen, if they’re both Florida residents, but, having said, that that’s a name that came up.
NOEM: Well, Neil, I’m a farmer. I’m a rancher. And I’m home in South Dakota.
So, I’m going to do my job and worry about the future some other day.
CAVUTO: All right.
Very good seeing you again, Governor. Thank you very, very much.
NOEM: You bet.
CAVUTO: It’s getting kind of close to see whether we are going to have those fireworks. But, again, anything can happen, usually does. But it is a beautiful, beautiful backdrop.
All right, thank you very much on that front.
We are following a number of other developments, including the president of the United States today in Philadelphia, but he has encountered some protesters now and then on, of all issues, the border.
We’re on that — after this.
CAVUTO: Did you think that Georgia’s former Senator Kelly Loeffler would ignore the state secretary of state there saying that she’s a fake Trumper?
We called her. She called back.
She’s on next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Detention centers! Close migrant detention centers now, please!
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I agree with you. I’m working on it, man. Give me another five days.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAVUTO: All right, the “man” thing, that’s something that the vice president, the former vice president, now president of the United States, has used throughout his career to address — when he gets kind of exasperated with people ripping him here.
So, this is a familiar pattern. I just want you to take a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: Here you have 51 or 52 corporations of the Fortune 500 haven’t paid a single penny in taxes for three years. Come on, man.
That’s a serious question, right? Is it acceptable to me? Come on.
QUESTION: Do you believe you will be running against former President Trump?
BIDEN: Oh, come on.
When I announced it, you all said it’s not possible. Come on. Give me a break.
China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAVUTO: All right, well, come on, man, or not, the fact of the matter is, Joe Biden normally has that reaction when he gets a question he doesn’t like.
And these protesters saying yesterday that he’s not doing enough to address the crisis at the border, well, that just rubbed him the wrong way.
Joe Lieberman with us now, the former Connecticut senator, 2000 Democratic vice presidential nominee.
Senator, great to see you.
That got under his skin a little bit. You know Joe Biden, obviously, far better than I. But that’s kind of what he does when he gets annoyed at the tone of a question. And this issue, the border, seemed to hit a nerve.
FMR. SEN. JOE LIEBERMAN (I-CT): Oh, come on, Neil. Oh, no, that’s enough.
LIEBERMAN: Yes, he’s human.
So, I don’t — I don’t mind some emotion.
LIEBERMAN: But I’m sure he’s found the whole border, immigration question frustrating, because, like me, he’s for immigration.
But I think, also like me, he’s not for open borders. There need to be rules. And yet there’s been this real surge in immigrants trying to come across. And, in fact, I saw a number the other day that, in March, last month of this year, there were more interceptions of immigrants trying to come into the country illegally for the last 20 years.
In other words, the last time the numbers were that high were 20 years ago. So, it’s frustrating to him, and he’s trying to combat it without seeming to break our tradition of welcoming immigrants like my four grandparents and a lot of other people’s parents and grandparents.
CAVUTO: You know, I’m just wondering, though, Senator, what you make of the tack he is taking on the economy, getting away from the border for a second, spending a lot of money.
CAVUTO: He’s getting high praise from a lot of the far left in your party, particularly Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and others, who say that he’s much better than they thought when it comes to spending.
Now, you built a career on being a moderate Democrat. That doesn’t sound moderate to me.
LIEBERMAN: No, I agree.
And, look, I was a big supporter of President Clinton. And one of the signature statements that he made before Congress, I guess in the mid-90s, maybe a little earlier, was that the era of big government is over. Now, that didn’t mean government was over. He said right away that government would be there to help people who can’t help themselves.
That’s the American way. Help them up. Give them a hand up, not a handout, but that the economy itself, the private sector, can take care of a lot of the opportunities that we want for people.
And I think that President Biden really stated two big goals when he came in, and those are the ones he should focus on, dealing with COVID-19 and helping us return to normal, and then getting the economy out of the ditch it was in last year. And, wow, is it out of the ditch, and we’re doing a lot better in COVID-19.
So, I think a lot of these other programs, they’re — listen, you can make a case for every one of them. But I worry that there’s — it’s much too much of an increase in the size of government. And how are we going to pay for it? We’re either going to pay for it by adding to our–
CAVUTO: Well, do you give him, Senator, the credit for that economy, the turnaround?
President Trump says it’s all him and it’s the fruits of his labors are bearing right now.
And even Joe Biden has said, when asked about these booming economic numbers we have been seeing, including strong first-quarter GDP, that had it not been for all of the spending he’s been leading, it wouldn’t have happened. Do you agree with that?
LIEBERMAN: So, you know what? I mean, this is the old story. Victory has 1,000 parents, defeat is an orphan.
So, the economy is booming now. I give President Trump and what he did for the economy, working with members of both parties in Congress, some credit. I give President Biden some credit for that first big economic assistance plan he adopted.
But, really, a big part of the credit goes to the American economy, the American people, businesses that hung in there and have continued to invest. And now the consumer, the American consumer, us, we are driving this incredible surge in the economy.
LIEBERMAN: Let’s see what that can do without adding to our debt, which is already $28 trillion, or raising taxes in a way that may actually have a negative effect on the economy.
We can’t do it all right away. President Biden is already off to a good start on those two big (AUDIO GAP) dealing with COVID and getting the economy going.
CAVUTO: Come on, man. I knew you would play it both ways.
CAVUTO: Joe Lieberman, seriously, joking.
Very good seeing you, my friend.
CAVUTO: Senator Joe Lieberman, the former Democratic vice presidential candidate, and a good sport, at that.
We were mentioning the Biden administration and all of that.
Some news on the virus front concerning India and maybe, maybe banning travel there.
Peter Doocy has more from the White House.
PETER DOOCY, FOX NEWS WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Neil, good afternoon.
The United States government is going to start sending — or they already have sent some supplies to India to help with the COVID-19 outbreak there, but, starting Tuesday, they are going to heavily restrict travel from there to here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KAMALA HARRIS, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have a responsibility, as the United States, in particular as it relates to the people that we have partnered with over the years, to step up when people are in a time of need.
And as it relates to the people of India, we have longstanding, decades-old relationship with India, with the Indian people, in particular around public health issues.
People are worried, no question.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DOOCY: Limiting travel from a specific part of the world to try to stop COVID is something Biden said wouldn’t work when Trump did it.
He tweeted this last year: “A wall will not stop the coronavirus. Banning all travel from Europe or any other part of the world will not stop it. This disease could impact every nation and any person the planet. And we need a plan to combat it.”
He also said this:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: Banning all travel from Europe or any other part of the world may slow it, but, as we have seen, it will not stop it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DOOCY: We have also learned this afternoon the TSA is going to extend its mask mandate for anybody that’s on a plane, a train, a bus, any part of the federal transportation network, through September.
And we are told that does apply even to people who have been fully vaccinated — Neil.
CAVUTO: Peter, thank you very much.
By the way, Peter, let me be one of the late comers to congratulate you on your marriage. If I can offer you any advice, just say she’s always right. And then–
DOOCY: That’s easy.
CAVUTO: It will be a long and very productive marriage.
DOOCY: Thank you, Neil.
CAVUTO: All right.
We have a lot more coming up.
You remember when we had the Georgia secretary of state on? Well, he decided to blast Kelly Loeffler, of course, the former Georgia senator. She responded. And she will, very clearly, next segment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRAD RAFFENSPERGER (R), GEORGIA SECRETARY OF STATE: She was a weak candidate. She had never set forth her vision of where she wanted to move Georgia to.
So, she never really engaged with voters. She said that she supported President Trump, but she’s a fake Trumper on that. And then, meanwhile, she’s given to liberal causes. And so people realized that she wasn’t what she said she was.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAVUTO: All right, that was coming from the secretary of state of Georgia, Brad Raffensperger.
And we put out a call to Senator Kelly Loeffler, the former Georgia Republican senator from Georgia, to let her respond. She was gracious enough to say: Yes, I will come on. I do want to talk about that.
Senator, good to have you.
FMR. SEN. KELLY LOEFFLER (R-GA): Thank you, Neil. Great to be with you.
CAVUTO: He called you a fake Trumper. What did you think of that?
LOEFFLER: Well, that’s a joke.
Everyone knows that’s not true. I have a great relationship with President Trump. We talk regularly. I was his biggest supporter in the Senate. I had 100 percent voting record with him, campaigned with him, for him, and was proud to support him.
But, look, you just heard our top elections official in Georgia exacting a political attack, at a time when Georgia voters are concerned about election integrity.
And this was the point of my letter, was to hold–
CAVUTO: Oh, we lost that feed. Hope to get it back here.
One of the things that has come up — hopefully, we re-patch things here and get her back — is that an investigation that she requested into the conduct of Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in the 2020 elections was not granted by the state attorney general, Chris Carr. So, we don’t know exactly where this goes.
Keep in mind that she is entertaining another run for that seat. But it’s very, very much divided, the Republican Party, within the state. And the president, of course, has his own views on how officials there handled what he said were irregularities that cost him the Peach State.
We will get into that, hopefully patch things up with Kelly Loeffler, after this.
Stay with us.
CAVUTO: All right, I think we plugged everything back in with Kelly Loeffler, the former Republican senator from the beautiful state of Georgia.
Senator, I apologize for that. I hope everything is working.
Are we all right now?
LOEFFLER: I’m here. Great to be with you, Neil. Thank you.
CAVUTO: OK, great.
I just want to get ahead to the secretary of state challenging you, calling you a fake Trumper. You said that wasn’t so.
But your efforts to have him look into the 2020 election in more detail was rejected by the attorney general, Chris Carr. So, what do you do now?
LOEFFLER: Well, I’m simply asking the secretary of state to be held accountable for sweeping changes he made that has created a crisis of confidence here in Georgia in our election integrity.
I mean, when you look at what happened in 2020 under his leadership, his failed leadership, he failed to act, he failed to communicate and he failed to do his job. He implemented a consent decree, unbeknownst to our General Assembly, that materially changed the absentee ballot signature verification process.
He accepted $5.5. million from big tech, unbeknownst to Georgians. He interfered in our run-off election by releasing a recording of a conversation he had with President Trump just two days before our election.
So, I’m simply asking for an investigation into potential conflicts of interests, because Georgians need to know that they can trust the process. We have two big elections coming up in 2022, the primary and the general. We have a local run-off coming up here — or a local election coming up in June.
Georgians need to trust the process, because we saw 339,000 Republicans who voted in the general that did not come back out and vote in January. So, that is suppression, when Georgia’s — Georgian voters don’t trust the process. And that’s what I’m focused on.
CAVUTO: Do you think, though, that the president railing against that process cost you a win?
LOEFFLER: Not at all.
Look, Georgians lost confidence in this process because of the unprecedented changes that Secretary Raffensperger put in place, failed to communicate, failed to implement on a uniform basis across the state, that led to mass confusion.
He did things like, in addition to mass mail out unsolicited absentee ballot applications — in fact, it led to the investigations in our General Assembly, and that — on the Georgia General Assembly of the primary election, where it was found out that 1,000 voters voted twice. We haven’t completed those investigations.
And that has undermined the confidence of Georgia voters, both in the primary and in the general, and now in the run-off, where no investigations have been announced.
So, we need to hold him accountable and to understand why he took these actions and why he interfered with the leakage of the conversation he had with the president just two days before our election.
CAVUTO: Well, I think part of that leaked conversation was what appeared to be the president looking for votes. Now, you would have to be there, I guess, to know how that was framed. But it did sound suspicious.
And I guess what I’m asking you is, given the investigations into this, given the hand counts and others that happened in the state, is this overdone? Do you believe that you would have won without this, that Donald Trump would have won without this, that former Senator Perdue would have won without this?
LOEFFLER: Look, what I’m focused on is protecting election integrity.
My argument is, that’s what Secretary Raffensperger should be focused on, is election integrity. We need to understand what happened in November and in January to make sure that it doesn’t happen again.
And so my focus isn’t looking back to change the outcome. It’s looking back to learn and to see what happened. And, if nothing went wrong, why is Secretary Raffensperger afraid to have a look back? And that’s all I’m asking, is to hold our top elections official accountable.
And he should welcome that investigation, because what would happen is, we could create more confidence in our state to make sure that more Georgians turn out to vote, because that’s what this is about, is making sure that everyone’s voice is heard.
CAVUTO: All right, so, if we were to have an investigation into that, it would be investigations after other investigations, this one more focused, I guess, on the behavior of Mr. Raffensperger.
But you have charged that you want a probe into whether he used his office to advance his political interests. He was supporting you and your colleague. So, how was that opposite what your interests were? You were both on the same page.
LOEFFLER: That’s not exactly correct.
I mean, look, he’s our top elections official. He’s not a partisan official, per se, but my focus is not–
CAVUTO: Well, he wasn’t — he wasn’t for your — but he wasn’t for your opponent, right, Senator? He was for you. He was for Senator Perdue.
LOEFFLER: Well, look — look–
CAVUTO: In other words, so, what would be in his interests to sabotage that?
LOEFFLER: Not suggesting sabotage.
I’m suggesting that Georgians don’t trust voting right now. And he took actions that led to a lack of confidence. And we need to get to the bottom of it.
Whether it was mass mailing of unrequested absentee ballots, whether it was a primary that made national news because of how it was handled and then later investigated, whether it was 1,000 voters voting twice, and dozens of investigations that haven’t been completed six months later, we need to hold him accountable to make sure that he acts and that he is transparent in his office, because we have two important elections coming up next year- –
LOEFFLER: — and to make sure that those are fair and trusted, and that more voters will come out and vote.
CAVUTO: So, Senator, I ask this of many people who appear on the show who were involved in the drama of the 2020 election.
Regardless of what happened in Georgia, do you believe that Joe Biden is the duly elected and legitimate, genuine winner of the presidential election and the legitimate president of the United States?
LOEFFLER: Look, Neil, yes, he’s the president of the United States.
But what we’re focused on in Georgia is making sure that every single Georgian’s voice is heard and counted. And Georgians don’t feel like that there’s a level playing field.
And we can’t sweep that under the rug. And what has — how our voting has been handled here has been a disgrace, and we need to make sure that Georgians trust it going forward.
CAVUTO: All right, we will see what happens.
Kelly Loeffler, thank you very, very much. Keep us abreast of that.
We will be checking with all Georgia authorities on that.
That will do it for “Your World.”
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