The O'Reilly Factor
A daily summary of segments aired on The O'Reilly Factor. A preview of the evening's rundown is posted before the show airs each weeknight.
Friday, February 17, 2017
The Factor Rundown
Guest Host
Jesse Watters
Top Story
Impact Segment
Unresolved Problems
Personal Story
Factor Followup
Unresolved Problems
Unresolved Problems
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Friday Factor Special: President Trump -- The First Month.
Trump vs. the Establishment
Jesse began Friday's special with conservative political observers Ashley Pratte and Mike Gallagher, who evaluated Donald Trump's Thursday's remarkable press conference. "Everything that got Donald Trump elected," Gallagher said, "was on display in the press conference yesterday. And if any of these elitists think that average, hard-working, normal Americans give a rat's rear end about the media being tweaked by President Trump, they are comically out of touch with reality. He's had a really good month and the best is yet to come. We're in for a ride!" Pratte, who strongly opposed Donald Trump's nomination, urged the president to act with more dignity. "I have been critical of the mainstream media for many years, but his decorum was lacking yesterday. He is no longer a candidate, he is the president and he needs to act like it. He could prove me wrong, but he needs to be held accountable."
"Fake News" and the Mainstream Media
The Associated Press reported Friday that the Obama administration has plans to use the National Guard to carry out 'raids' to round up illegal immigrants. Jesse discussed the report, which turned out to be false, with pro-immigration activist Ali Noorani and immigration analyst Mark Krikorian. "This was a discussion memo that didn't even mention raids," Krikorian pointed out, "and it was never even considered at the White House level. The AP turned this into 'fake news,' this was yellow journalism." Nevertheless, Noorani worried that the White House will be far too tough on illegal immigrants. "The Trump administration has been talking about a border wall, more interior enforcement, and the travel ban. The backlash will be severe, the majority of Americans do not want to see the National Guard going door-to-door. We are in favor of smart law enforcement that focuses on the 'bad hombres,' not 8-million people."
Trump Confronts his Critics
President Trump's legion of critics describe his White House as a place filled with 'chaos,' while the president insists he is at the helm of 'a fine-tuned machine.' Jesse discussed the conflicting reports with political scientist Larry Sabato and journalist Judy Miller. "That was Trump unplugged yesterday," Miller said, "and reporters could not believe what they were witnessing. But this is a White House that seems to have an inability to function effectively. We saw General Flynn not telling Vice President Pence the truth." Sabato contended that it is way, way too early to pass judgment on the Trump presidency and the administration's efficiency. "Some important stuff has been done and you should not reach any judgment 29 days into a presidency. We're not even one-third of the way through the artificial 'first 100 days.' So a lot of these conclusions will go out the window as time goes by."
Trump's Travel Ban
President Trump says he will revise and reissue his temporary travel ban that was overturned by federal judges. Jesse welcomed Imam Shamsi Ali, an opponent of the ban, who is organizing a pro-Muslim rally in New York City. "Muslims have protested against terrorist attacks," Ali insisted, "and this rally is not only about Muslims, it's about America. I'm an immigrant from Indonesia and we should be asking how Muslims are being treated in America. The current president basically says Islamic terrorism is a problem, but targeting a group of people based on religion is a discriminatory policy." Jesse reminded Ali, "There is a Muslim terrorist problem in the world, the majority of terrorist attacks are carried out by Muslims."
Trump Vs. NAACP
NAACP president Cornell William Brooks has denounced President Trump for his bleak description of some majority-black American cities. Jesse spoke about the president's racial attitudes with Atima Omara of the Young Democrats of America. "I understand the sentiment of what Cornell Brooks is saying," she began. "Donald Trump has not shown any interest in sincerely improving the lives of African Americans. His behavior can sometimes be very racially insensitive, leading some people to question whether he is a racist." But Niger Innis of the Congress of Racial Equality ridiculed the notion that President Trump is racially biased. "He is not a racist, I do not want to go down that rat hole. What is more important is what will the president do to change the lives of African Americans and the people in our cities? I have confidence that the president has a great plan and has the people in place to execute the plan."
Same-Sex Marriage & Religious Freedom
The Washington State Supreme Court has ruled against a florist who refused to serve a same-sex wedding because of her religious beliefs. The case could lead to a showdown in the Supreme Court over religious liberty. Sandy Rios of the conservative American Family Association and Democratic strategist Robin Biro debated the issue. "There is a sign in front of the florist's business," Biro said, "that says it is open to all of the public. If this florist only wanted to do specially commissioned flowers, she could do that, but she cannot discriminate against people based on her religion. You can't go down this road." Rios laid out the other side of the argument. "This florist is being forced to embrace and endorse and give her artistry to something that she feels violates her religious faith. The whole union between one man and one woman is sacred and she cannot lend her artistry to something that she feels is an immoral union that breaches her conscience."
Political Activism by Athletes
Jesse introduced Bill's recent interview with former NFL star Donte Stallworth, who explained why pro athletes have a responsibility to speak up about politics and culture. "They should take the onus on themselves to be educated," Stallworth said, "and they have to be honest and truthful. I don't think Colin Kaepernick was intentionally disrespectful. He initially tried to make a silent protest and then he talked a lot about disparities that minorities and African Americans face in certain communities." Stallworth also supported the handful of New England Patriot players who are refusing to visit the White House because they are not fans of Donald Trump. "I agree with whatever they want to do. There was also a hockey player who didn't go to the White House when President Obama was there. All athletes and entertainers should be able to explain why they are using their platform."