'Your World' on inflation, debt limit showdown

CHARLES PAYNE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: President Biden meeting today with the heads of several major retailers, trying to get to the bottom of the supply chain issues that are keeping some gifts from getting under the Christmas tree this year.

And if that gift does not make it, chances are you’re going to be paying a whole lot more for it.

Welcome, everyone. I’m Charles Payne, in for Neil Cavuto. And this is YOUR WORLD.

To David Spunt at the White House.

The president just canceling his remarks on this issue. So, David, what are you hearing?

DAVID SPUNT, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Charles, this is a little bit rare. We have seen presidents in the past cancel remarks, then extend them to a little bit later in the day.

But President Biden is actually moving these remarks until Wednesday. He was supposed to speak about 15 minutes ago about his meeting with some of the CEOs to talk about the supply chain issue. But the White House is saying that he wanted to spend a little bit more time to talk with some of these CEOs.

There was some video at the top what we call in the business a pool spray, where the camera is in the room and the president makes some comments. So, apparently, the White House believes that is sufficient, saying the president will talk about it on Wednesday.

But back to the issue at hand, he met with these Fortune 500 companies CEOs to come up with a plan to ease some of these supply chain tensions, some of the companies, Best Buy, Food Lion, Mattel, just to name a few. This comes as inflation is at a 31-year high. The president received a sampling of reports from brick-and-mortar stores, grocery chains and online Web sites.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I’m hearing from each of you about what you’re seeing this holiday season, how well prepared are you to have products you need on the shelves, and how you have innovated and hired to overcome these supply chain challenges you have.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SPUNT: As the president met at the White House, ships continued to sit off the California coast, waiting to make those deliveries.

Add that on to a national trucker shortage, and it spells not only a delay for the holidays, but a likely delay into the early months of 2022. Meanwhile, Black Friday sales were up significantly, Charles, from last year at the height of the pandemic, but down almost 30 percent from the 2019 level, Cyber Monday still going on through today.

So, those numbers clearly not even tallied yet. But it’ll be interesting to see the comparison from last year, because last year saw a decent amount of online shopping. But now that jobless claims are down, White House officials, economic officials are hoping that those numbers improve. Again, President Biden will address some of the outcome, the strategies from that meeting with CEOs on Wednesday.

Tomorrow, he heads to Minnesota — Charles.

PAYNE: David, thank you very much. A lot of intrigue.

Of course, President Biden did meet with retail CEOs this afternoon. They’re trying to ease a supply chain crisis, bring down prices. But with less than a month ago before Christmas, is it too little, too late?

I want to bring him Bob Cusack from The Hill, editor in chief there, on the political fallout from all of this.

Bob, I know the visuals are always sort of intriguing. But now there’s more questions than answers than when we came into the day. And the clock is ticking. Honestly, I would have appreciated a meeting like this maybe a month ago.

BOB CUSACK, THE HILL: Yes.

No, this is a big problem for the White House. And they’re pitching the social spending bill that they have not yet passed in Congress, passed the House before Thanksgiving, they’re saying that’s going to fix inflation. I think, before Christmas, certainly we’re not going to have any miracle. So I think we’re going to see inflation going into the new year.

And then it’s a question of whether this legislation is going to fix things, whether the infrastructure bill, which has monies for the ports, is that going to fix things? I tell you, voters usually don’t have a long memory. But if they’re not getting their Christmas gifts or they’re having to pay a lot more for Christmas gifts, they’re going to remember in November of 2022.

PAYNE: Yes.

And there’s no way logistically that even the infrastructure bill, which has gone through, is going to really yield anything. And let’s just hope — we remember the infamous comments from Jeff Immelt, who was in charge of the program under President Obama, when they asked about it later about those shovel-ready jobs. He kind of chuckled and said, well, there were no shovel-ready jobs.

So we know there’s — everyone knows that there can’t be fixes, but, at this meeting today, you had the CEO of Best Buy, the CEO of Walmart, Etsy, Kroger. These are large companies. We just had Small Business Saturday on Saturday. Those are the companies I’m worried about, the ma-and-pa shops that don’t have to kind of leverage.

Walmart bought their own container ships. So I would like to see the White House even get more voices in there about how to really help Main Street, particularly small businesses.

CUSACK: Yes, and there’s — a lot of Democrats are nervous about this.

They want, whether it’s in the House or Senate, to bring legislation, to debate it, not to what the White House has done to some extent is blame the shipping industry. I don’t think that’s going to work. People want results. They don’t want finger-pointing. Some people want the White House to appoint some type of czar for supply chain issues.

The White House has done some stuff on executive orders. But, clearly, what’s happened to this point has — is just not working, at least not yet.

PAYNE: Right.

So, President Biden, to your earlier point, finds himself somewhere between a rock and a hard place. He’s got to portray America in such dire straits that we need another $ 2 trillion on top of all the trillions we have already passed in the last year or so. That obviously added to this inflation crisis.

And yet we get the jobs report on Friday. That should be pretty good. We saw unemployment claims freefall. So it feels like people, even those who saved up some of that stimulus money, have probably run out enough that they’re going out and they’re taking some of those 11 million jobs. How can he have it both ways, Bob?

How can you say we’re in such dire straits that we have got 500,000 jobs created last month, but we still need to spend another $ 2 trillion?

CUSACK: It’s a good question, Charles.

And as far as what Democrats are saying, I think they’re going to get some type of big bill through probably by Christmas. And then, remember, they said, this bill is going to solve a lot of the nation’s problems. Well, if it doesn’t in 2022, you’re going to see a massive Republican wave next fall.

PAYNE: Yes.

CUSACK: And that’s what a lot of the vulnerable Democrats — and we’re seeing more of them retire, because they’re a little scared of what could be coming in about a year.

PAYNE: It feels like the political calculus here is that people will become addicted to free money, bigger government, largest social safety net, and even though they’re enduring some inflationary prices, pressures right now, think it’s better.

I mean, we were told Obamacare, we would learn to love it. And it feels like we’re going down that same path.

CUSACK: The stakes are very high for the Democratic Party with the House and Senate up for grabs.

PAYNE: Yes.

CUSACK: And right now, it’s not looking great for them. But it’s a long way before the midterms.

PAYNE: It certainly is.

Bob, thanks a lot. Appreciate it.

CUSACK: Thanks.

PAYNE: Point, click, wait, that could be the theme for today’s Cyber Monday shopping bonanza. We will explain.

And just in time for the next holiday rush, those new travel restrictions kicking in today due to the Omicron variant. Ho-ho no?

(MERCIAL BREAK)

PAYNE: Stocks bouncing back from Friday’s 900-point plunge, recouping some losses, but not all, this with supply chain issues continuing to put a bit of a drag on holiday shopping.

To FOX Business Network’s Lauren Simonetti with the very latest — Lauren.

LAUREN SIMONETTI, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Charles, good to see you.

So, smaller discounts this year on fewer items because of supply chain issues from the factory shutdowns to the port backups, this Cyber Monday expected to ring up sales of as much as $ 11.3 billion. That compares to $ 10.8 billion last year. But Black Friday, just passed, that was a disappointment for retailers. It brought in $ 8.9 billion online, slightly less than in 2020.

And, Charles, it was the first time ever that sales declined on a major shopping day. People just couldn’t find what they were looking for. According to Adobe Analytics, out-of-stock messages they surged 124 percent from last year, appliances, electronics and housekeeping supplies the most likely to be sold out.

And that is why shoppers started early and were more likely to shop in person. There is hope that things are getting better. Walmart’s CEO just said that he seen a 26 percent increase in containers going through U.S. ports in just the past four weeks.

And in Southern California, Doug McMillon says container movement there has jumped 51 percent. Remember, Walmart chartered its own ships in late summer to ensure that its shelves were stocked for holiday. That’s the ports.

At the airport, TSA officers screened nearly 2.5 million people yesterday. That is a new pandemic high and perhaps a sign that, despite some of these international restrictions that we’re seeing, Omicron won’t dent the economy as much as feared.

Now, those fears helped wipe out nearly $ 2 trillion in global stock market value on Friday. In the U.S. today, some, just some of those losses have been recovered, the Dow gaining about 300 — 200 — sorry — the Dow gaining some points today, but a far cry from the 905 points that we lost on Friday, the Nasdaq regaining nearly all of the 353 points that it lost back on Friday.

Now, the month, it wraps up tomorrow, Charles, the Nasdaq and the S&P back in the green, but not the Dow — back to you.

PAYNE: It’s just been a rocky ride.

SIMONETTI: Yes.

PAYNE: Thanks so much, Lauren.

So, with out-of-stock messages soaring this Cyber Monday, should we be worrying? And what does it all mean for the economy?

Let’s get the read from our money gurus today, Kenny Polcari and Ann Berry.

Kenny, let me start with you.

KENNY POLCARI, SLATESTONE WEALTH: So, no, I don’t think you need to be worried about it.

Look, it’s very funny. I’m in this very interesting position where I don’t have young kids anymore. So I haven’t been going out trying to buy toys and all that stuff. So I’m not experiencing the same thing that people are concerned about, empty store shelves and not being able to get this stuff.

So I have a different perspective on what this holiday season is. But that being the case, I think that they have created such a frenzy, telling people back in September you better start shopping now, you better start shopping now. So a lot of people, and I think, by my estimation, have already done a lot of shopping.

A lot of the stuff that they wanted, they already have. I think this last minute push that they are trying to create this hysteria to get people to go out and shop, I think, is ridiculous. But I’m not really of the mind-set that you have to be concerned about it.

PAYNE: All right, Kenny, we’re going to have to get to some grandkids, my man.

(LAUGHTER)

PAYNE: But I’m going to go to Ann for a moment, because I was out shopping for all five of mine. And it was a frenzy.

Here’s a question, though, Ann.

POLCARI: I’m sure it’s a frenzy.

PAYNE: If stuff isn’t there, will demand remain? I think that is the big question mark. If you want — if you’re waiting for something, and you don’t get it, will you still buy it in January or February?

Because if that demand is not there, then that’s a lost opportunity for everybody.

ANN BERRY, WHEELHOUSE: Charles, I thought you were going to lob at me that you should send me some grandkids. So I’m grateful you just get a tough question my way instead.

(LAUGHTER)

BERRY: But I do think that demand is going to remain.

I think that we will probably see an uptick in demand that’s been delayed coming into Q1 next year. But the thing I’m looking at, Kenny, which is a little bit different from you, is, I’m much less focused right now on what consumers are doing and where they’re seeing stock-outs.

I’m very concerned about where manufacturers are failing to get inventory and parts as we move into early next year, Charles. That’s what I’m looking at right now.

PAYNE: So, real quick, then, Ann, the Dallas Fed, which is a manufacturing report for Dallas…

BERRY: Yes.

PAYNE: … saw some big improvements, but also prices at another all-time high, even the prices that they’re charging customers 600 percent above the norm.

So what does that say about inflation? Even if a manufacturer is getting their act together, it seems like this inflation crisis is not going away.

BERRY: And certainly not anytime soon.

I am extremely concerned that, until we see these port blockages go away, until we start to see manufacturing overseas ramp up, pumping inventory back into our supply chains domestically here, I think, Charles, 2022 is still going to be a little bit of a bumpy ride for inflation, no matter what the Fed does at this point.

PAYNE: You know, Kenny, the stock market just reverted back to buying technology stocks. That’s the only thing that really ripped today.

You can see a big divergence between the Nasdaq and the Dow, where all the old industrial names are. Is that a concern for you, like with our economy, the industrial base? Is there some kind of red flag that we should know about?

POLCARI: No, I don’t — listen, I’m of the belief next year that the investor and the market is going to go towards more value.

And value, to me, is industrials, financials, energy, because it’s concerned about the bumpy road that we’re surely going to hit once the Fed starts to quicken the pace of tapering, and then really start talking about interest rate increases.

To Ann’s point, inflation is not going away next year at all. And at some point — and Rafi Bostic said it over the weekend — that he favors quicker tapering. And that just leads you to believe that the Fed thing behind the iron curtain is that they’re much more concerned about inflation than they’re letting on.

And I think that narrative is going to change in the new year. I don’t think they’re going to change the narrative four weeks before the end of this year. I think they’re going to try to hold the status quo. But I think when January, February comes, suddenly you’re going to see a change in that narrative. And that’s going to create the turbulence ahead.

PAYNE: Real quick, then, Ann. I get less than a minute to go.

Friday is the jobs report. Right now, the estimate is 500,000. Listen, it’s a lot. But there was a point where we were promised a million jobs every single month. That never materialized. But do you see some more normalcy, that people are going to go out, start taking those jobs, and maybe the economy gets back to a place where there’s equilibrium and we understand what the heck’s going on?

Because 11 million jobs have been begging for a few months.

BERRY: Yes, I think that we’re still going to see another strong jobs report, Charles. We saw it last month in recent weeks.

Where I’m still mystified by is, you have still got four million people missing from the work force. You have got labor force participation that’s dropped. Until we resolve that mystery, I’m not going to be looking at these short-term indicators as a sign that the market is back in equilibrium quite yet.

PAYNE: Yes, it is a mystery. Where the hell did four million workers go?

Kenny — Kenny and Ann, thank you both very much.

Meanwhile, folks, those new COVID travel restrictions are kicking in. But will it be enough to keep the new variant out?

FOX Business’ Kelly O’Grady is checking it all out from LAX.

KELLY O’GRADY, FOX BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: With the new Omicron variant spreading, can Americans expect more travel bans?

We will dig into that next.

(MERCIAL BREAK)

PAYNE: Getting new guidance from the CDC, now expanding booster recommendations to all adults, this with the new Omicron variant.

Of course, a lot of controversy over the handling of that. We’re going to go into all of it in 60 seconds.

(MERCIAL BREAK)

PAYNE: President Biden says he doesn’t expect additional travel restrictions due to the new COVID variant, Omicron, but — at least not at this moment, this as U.S. restrictions have kicked in for eight African countries today.

FOX Business Kelly O’Grady is at Los Angeles International with the very latest — Kelly.

O’GRADY: Hey, Charles.

Well, even though officials and experts are urging people not to panic, concern is growing. The new Omicron variant is being found in many, many countries. The list is growing. And the U.S. health officials warn it may already be in the United States.

Now, the U.S. has started restricting travel from South Africa and seven other African nations starting today. Dozens of countries are following suit. And Israel, Japan, Morocco, they’re all banning entry to foreigners, while Australia is delaying their reopening by two weeks.

And the president’s remarks this afternoon raised more questions of what may be coming. And he urged adults to get the booster as a primary path to stop the spread of Omicron. But this introduces the point of what the term fully vaccinated will mean as the variant spreads.

On top of that, South Africa has stated that they’re being punished for reporting the variant immediately, though the president emphasized that it was the number of cases that caused the move and affirmed more international bans are unlikely.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN: The degree of the spread impacts on whether or not there is a need for any travel restriction.

But that’s not — I don’t anticipate that at this point.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

O’GRADY: Now, Delta and United, the two airlines that have direct flights from the United States to South Africa, have stated that they don’t plan on altering their routes at the moment.

I talked to travelers here, and the common theme was just exhaustion, with variant after variant coming. So it’s really hard to tell if Americans would even accept more restrictions and more travel bans, as the goalpost keeps moving — Charles.

PAYNE: Kelly, thank you very much.

So how serious is the threat from this particular variant?

I want to get the read on that from NYC Health and Hospitals special pathogens senior director Dr. Syra Madad.

Doctor, it’s so interesting that we have these travel restrictions, and you have the rest of the world sort of a mixed bag, right? Some nations are completely locking everyone out of their nations and others haven’t made this decision. How does someone — how does the medical community, the scientific community come up with this sort of determination?

DR. SYRA MADAD, NEW YORK CITY HEALTH AND HOSPITALS: Well, travel bans are more political move, right?

So when we look at it from a medical standpoint, what we’re trying to do is obviously ensure that those that are potentially coming in with a COVID-19, we’re able to screen them, test them, take care of them, but then also looking at the prevention aspect of preventing infections from happening.

These travel bans, what they try to accomplish, is to slow the spread. It’s not that it’s preventing the seeding of this variant from even coming into the U.S. That’s not possible because we have porous borders. So we know it’s only a matter of time and we’re going to start seeing this new variant come up both here locally in New York, as well as around the nation.

But, essentially, what it’s doing is, it’s buying us some time, maybe a few days, maybe a couple of weeks, before we have more larger-scale outbreaks potentially from this new variant. But we know so little about it, whether it’s more transmissible than Delta, is it going to — are people going to be more severely ill with this — with this variant?

So, there’s a lot of questions up in the air that we’re going to get answered in the next couple of weeks.

PAYNE: The South African medical community seemed very frustrated with their actions, saying, hey, you know what? They were forthcoming. They gave us all the information. Other nations, we know, have withheld that kind of information very vital to the world.

And what they got for it was a restriction that’s certainly going to harm them economically. How much time will be needed? Because I have read anywhere from a few days to a few weeks before there’s a real assessment. Right now, they’re saying that maybe it’s more transmissible, but, certainly, the symptoms, the illness has been relatively mild.

MADAD: So, that’s correct that those are some anecdotal reports that are coming out. And, again, this is not based on any significant or large amount of data.

That is what we’re hearing, in terms of both it potentially being more transmissible than Delta because of the numerous amount of mutations that it has and the location of these mutations. We’re also seeing in some reports that it’s resulting in mild or moderate disease, and that hen it’s primarily infecting those that are unvaccinated.

So there’s a bit of some of these reports coming out. But, again, until we have more data — the reason why it’s going to take some time is that you’re going to — you’re looking at this particular variant, and you’re testing it against the sera of those that are vaccinated, those who are not vaccinated. You are looking at the antibody response.

And that’s going to take a couple of weeks from a laboratory perspective. And then, as you all know, hospitalization and death is a lagging indicator.

PAYNE: Right.

MADAD: And so if you’re getting infected today, you’re not going to see the results of it causing severe illness in another few weeks, so that’s why it’s going to take some time to get this data.

PAYNE: All right, so let me ask you this.

I want to bring up New York Democratic Governor Hochul. She declared a state of emergency, this amid the fears of this new variant, which could also limit nonessential surgeries. She addressed that order today. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. KATHY HOCHUL (D-NY): This allows us to have the flexibility, what we call the surge and flex strategy. And one area we have power now to do this is to limit nonessential, urgent — non-urgent scheduled procedures at specific hospitals that have the limited capacity.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PAYNE: Your thoughts on, is this call maybe a tad too early?

MADAD: Well, it’s not just because it’s new variants.

It’s also because we’re in the time where people are congregating indoors. We are seeing increased numbers of infection rates generally because of Delta, which is still the predominant strain here around the United States and here in New York.

You’re also seeing more people obviously that have gotten together in the holidays. And so that may mean that more people may be infected and may require more hospitalizations and requiring kind of that hospital-level care.

So, it’s — I think it’s a move that is being cautious. And I think it’s one of those moves that I think certainly is welcome. Any way we can ensure that we have good capacity, both in terms of staff, beds, as well as supplies and staffing, I think is a kind of a good next step.

PAYNE: OK.

Dr. Madad, thank you very much. Really appreciate it.

Meanwhile, folks, California seeing a wave of smash-and-grab robberies over the weekend. So what’s being done to stop it?

And Democrats rushing to pass President Biden’s social spending bill by the end of the year, but will moderates derail it?

(MERCIAL BREAK)

PAYNE: Smash-and-grab robberies running rampant in L.A. over the holiday weekend.

FOX News’ William La Jeunesse has the latest — William.

WILLIAM LA JEUNESSE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Charles, these are not onesies and twosies. This is kind of organized.

And some here in California are rethinking the state’s soft-on-crime policies, like releasing inmates early or shorter sentences, this after, as you said, about a dozen smash-and-grab robberies last week, including one Friday, when thieves ransacked this Home Depot.

They also hit stores on Melrose, on — in South L.A., in the Valley, and several in Midtown.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RICK CARUSO, LOS ANGELES DEVELOPER: A manifestation of weak leadership. I think it’s a manifestation of some really bad decisions that our leaders made. It’s a manifestation of deciding we’re going to defund the cops.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LA JEUNESSE: In San Francisco, similar robberies in Union Square and the East Bay.

Now, what do most of these crimes have in common? Well, they occurred in areas overseen by progressive DAs, who frequently blame crime on wealth inequality and racism and oppose jail for many nonviolent offenders.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LISA SMITTCAMP, FRESNO COUNTY, CALIFORNIA, DISTRICT ATTORNEY: We have to get rid of these impostor district attorneys, because if you look at the jurisdictions where this is happening in San Francisco and Los Angeles, even in Chicago and Minneapolis, it’s where you have these Soros-funded DAs who are really public defenders in disguise.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LA JEUNESSE: Now, Governor Newsom has also favored laws reducing the prison population and downgrading many crimes to misdemeanors.

Now, however, with public opinion shifting, so, it seems, has he.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM (D-CA): We want real accountability. We want people prosecuted, and we want people to feel safe this holiday season.

Why are we here? We’re talking about safety, people’s health. We want to protect people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LA JEUNESSE: Now, many of these DAs say property crimes are victimless.

Well, a security guard was killed last week trying to protect a TV news crew while they were covering, what, Charles? Another robbery — back to you.

PAYNE: Yes, William, thank you very much.

Now to another story that we’re following. Jury selection starting today in the trial of actor Jussie Smollett. He’s accused of lying to police about being attacked in 2019.

FOX News’ David Lee Miller has those details — David.

DAVID LEE MILLER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Charles, actor Jussie Smollett, he was silent as he walked into a Chicago courthouse this morning.

A jury is going to decide if he’s either a victim or the perpetrator of a scam that prosecutors say he hoped would raise his public profile. In January of 2019, Smollett said he was assaulted on a deserted Chicago street by two men who shouted racist and homophobic slurs and yelled “This is MAGA country,” in reference to President Trump.

Smollett told investigators the attackers placed a noose around his neck. Two weeks later, his story began to unravel. Two brothers, Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo, who worked as extras on his TV show, told police they were paid $ 3, 500 by the actor to stage the assault. He denied it was a hoax.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JUSSIE SMOLLETT, ACTOR: I’m an advocate. I respect too much the people — who I am now one of those people — who have been attacked in any way.

You do such a disservice when you lie about things like this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MILLER: Additional criminal charges against Smollett were dropped after he agreed to perform public service and forfeited $ 10,000 bond. But following public outrage, a special prosecutor was appointed, and Smollett was indicted on multiple counts of disorderly conduct linked to the allegedly staged assault.

The judge today was asking prospective jurors a number of very specific questions. He wanted to know if they’d ever watched TMZ, the TV show “Empire,” and if they are members of pro-choice or defund the police organizations. He also told the jury that, during the trial, race and sexual orientation are going to be mentioned.

It is not known if Smollett is going to take the stand in his own defense. And even if he does, this is one appearance that few people are going to have the opportunity to see. The judge has ruled that this trial cannot be televised — Charles.

PAYNE: Thank you very much.

So let’s get to read them both to smash-and-grab and Smollett case. Former Detroit Police Chief James Craig joins us now.

Also, I want to mention he’s a Republican running for governor in Michigan.

Chief, thanks for joining us.

Let’s start with this smash-and-grab. You know what I what I find intriguing is, everyone is saying it’s very organized. They’re using apps. And I’m thinking, OK, it’s some sort of a gang. And no one knows how to fight.

Isn’t this the time to bring in something like RICO, Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act? Isn’t that what this is?

JAMES CRAIG, FORMER DETROIT, MICHIGAN, POLICE CHIEF: We have no leadership.

But, Charles, again, thank you for getting me on your show. I want to also as we start our segment offer my prayers out to a retired sergeant who was killed ironically at a location that had a smash-and-grab out in the city of Oakland.

But here’s the issues. We can’t call this leadership. There is no leadership. This is a systematic failure to decriminalize the crime of theft, not continue with four decades-plus of experience. It is predictable. It’s escalating into violence.

You have heard the stories where customers have been assaulted, employees have been assaulted. And so it’s like broken windows. We know it’s going to escalate.

But we have these rogue progressive prosecutors who, frankly, have no concern for businesses, for our community, the patrons that go into these stores. And so it’s not a surprise. There’s just no consequences for the crime. And it’s going to continue to escalate.

But you know what I find fascinating? The San Francisco DA is now walking back his position. In 2019, he wanted to end mass incarceration.

PAYNE: Right.

CRAIG: And then you got the governor of California, who’s now singing a different song.

So you can’t have it both ways. The Democrats are in trouble. They know it. And this anti-crime — they’re just not anti-crime.

PAYNE: And, Chief, let me jump in there, because we’re talking about very intelligent people.

You have already said two or three times that we knew the logical outcome of this. I mean, same thing with a district attorney that says, you know what, I don’t care if we have bail and $ 1,000 for someone with a rap sheet that goes back 10 years. I know someone eventually will get hurt.

They acknowledge this kind of stuff, and still go through with it, knowing that the public is going to be crushed. I mean, people have to live in fear of their lives that someone could commit or be locked — or arrested for committing a heinous crime and be out on a grand, $ 1,000, so they can do it all over again.

I mean, the public has — I mean, ultimately, the public has got to wake up to this, because they’re not going to.

CRAIG: You know, I got to tell you, in recent elections, I think the public is starting to wake up. People are sick and tired. There’s no political accountability for these policy failures. That must change.

Tlaib out here in the state of Michigan…

PAYNE: Yes.

CRAIG: … she just launched some 2023 BREATHE Act. She wants to end life sentences, three-strikes law, and, oh, by the way, fully empty prisons in 10 years.

PAYNE: Yes. Yes.

CRAIG: So what do we say to folks that live in those vulnerable communities that rely on the police and other public servants?

PAYNE: Yes.

CRAIG: And, by the way, prosecutors and judges are also public servants?

PAYNE: She’s going to unleash hell on those communities, hell, pure hell on those communities.

I got a minute to go. I’m going to read you a quote: “You do such disservice when you lie about such — something like this.”

That’s Jussie Smollett, the actor. That’s what he said. Anyone who would lie about being attacked, who would try to create some sort of racial animosity does such a disservice. If he’s found guilty of this, what should be — what should be the penalty for it?

CRAIG: He definitely should be held accountable.

I won’t get into penalty. But I got to tell you, everybody is quick to play the race card or sexual orientation. Even the vice president, I guess, during the campaign trail took a position of, there’s an escalation of crimes against those because of their sexual orientation.

PAYNE: Yes.

CRAIG: I won’t reject that.

But let’s focus on the crime. If this man committed a crime, he needs to be held accountable, bottom line.

PAYNE: Bottom line.

Chief, always a pleasure. Thank you so much.

CRAIG: Thank you. Thank you, Charles.

PAYNE: So, Twitter stock down for the year. Its longtime CEO is out. Is that a coincidence?

(MERCIAL BREAK)

PAYNE: We have got some breaking news for you out of Washington, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell seeing inflation lingering into next year and sees COVID potentially hurting the economy, now, this coming from prepared remarks ahead of tomorrow’s testimony before the House Banking Committee. We’re going to bring you more as we get it.

Meanwhile, Jack, Jack isn’t back. Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey stepping down as the company’s CEO. It’s a move that we have expected for some time.

To FOX Business Network’s Susan Li with the latest — Susan.

SUSAN LI, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I would say timing is a bit surprising. We know he’s been there for 16 years at Twitter.

And you have remember, Charles, that he was brought back kind of like Steve Jobs, kicked out of the company in 2008, brought back in 2015 to fix the problems.

PAYNE: Yes.

LI: But I want to show you the resignation letter that Dorsey tweeted out. And tell me what you think of it.

He says — and he writes that he wanted to be clear. “I want you all to know that this was my decision. And I own it. There aren’t many founders that choose their company over their own ego.”

Now, he’s handing over the reins effective immediately today to chief technology officer Parag Agrawal, who has been there for over 10 years. And Dorsey will say that this decision was his.

Now, was it really? Because you had Wall Street’s — one of the toughest activist investors out there pushing for Dorsey to step aside, because, look, Dorsey was helping two companies at the same time. That’s his other company, the payments company Square, which he gets most of his wealth from, but he wasn’t giving Twitter enough of his valuable time.

It was underperforming Facebook and Snap. And you had people on Wall Street saying, well, focus on one. And if you’re not going to focus on Twitter, then move aside, so somebody else can.

PAYNE: Yes.

Well, also, and I don’t know. Listen, I had lunch with him a couple years ago, and I had dinner with him a couple years ago. I think he’s a sincere guy who — who’s — I think he wants to save the world. You know, the day after we had lunch, he’s going to a tech conference in Haiti.

LI: Yes.

PAYNE: Yes, I mean, right, you know, like something like, OK.

LI: Philanthropy.

PAYNE: Yes.

And so now the big talk is that he’s going to obviously stick with Square.

LI: Yes.

PAYNE: But now he’s looking at crypto.

LI: Of course.

And you have been hearing that a lot. So he’s become a crypto evangelist, along with Cathie Wood and Elon Musk. But for Twitter itself, nothing really changes. I mean, he’s been kind of a — some would say that he’s kind of a soft-handed CEO, where he’s handed over the reins of control and day-to-day to his executives.

So I don’t think anything changes from that perspective. But some would say, if you were going to kick off one of the most influential users, President Trump at the time after January the 6th, that might have been a strategic mistake, because some would say that Trump himself actually kept Twitter relevant throughout his entire administration.

PAYNE: Oh, sure. Sure.

Some would say Trump kept the media relevant. New York Times, go back and look at the stock. They were on the verge of going out of business or selling themselves to a billionaire.

So — but, in the meantime, we will see what Jack does with the — in the world of crypto.

LI: Yes.

PAYNE: Great stuff, Susan.

LI: Thank you.

PAYNE: Thank you very much.

Well, the push to go green setting — set to cost a whole lot of green. With key Democrats like Senator Joe Manchin pushing back, will the party be forced to scale back?

(MERCIAL BREAK)

PAYNE: Congress back in session this week, and so is that year-end blitz, including the debt limit deadline and no deal in sight.

FOX News congressional correspondent Chad Pergram has the latest from Capitol Hill — Chad.

CHAD PERGRAM, FOX NEWS CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good afternoon, Charles.

There is only one thing Congress must do this week. That is avoid a government shutdown by early Saturday morning. Democrats must also raise the debt ceiling later this month. Spectacles like these are typical at the end of the year.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. AL GREEN (D-TX): We always have drama, first of all, at this time of year, because we put off the big things until now and before Christmas to get them done.

But we also have drama now around the debt ceiling and the possibility of shutting down the government. It’ll take some compromise, but we will get there.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PERGRAM: On government funding, Democrats could be forced to re-up old funding at current levels. They’re not putting their mark on government spending with a temporary bill.

They’re essentially running the government under a Trump spending plan. That’s why the GOP hopes to string this out. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says Democrats are too focused on their social spending bill.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY): So it goes on and on like this, a hodgepodge catalog that is built to satisfy the demands of activists, not the needs of families.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PERGRAM: The secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen, testifies before a Senate committee tomorrow. Expect questions about the debt ceiling.

Yellen told Congress earlier this month December 15 was the deadline. All of this means Senate debate on the social spending bill drifts closer to Christmas — Charles.

PAYNE: Thank you very much, Chad.

West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin not a big fan of some of the green programs in the spending bill. Will that force Democrats to scale back?

Want to bring a Democratic strategist Laura Fink, along with Independent Women’s Forum’s Patrice Onwuka.

Patrice, so far, Senator Manchin has held pretty tough. And every time it feels like he may bend, he comes out with a statement out of left field, really maybe out of right field, that suggests he’s not going to change his mind on some of this social spending. Your thoughts?

PATRICE ONWUKA, INDEPENDENT WOMEN’S FORUM: Absolutely.

I mean, Charles, I think he’s been very adamant, not just on the size and the scope of the bill, but some of those key provisions that a lot of moderates and — or a lot of far left progressives really are non- negotiable, particularly paid leave as an example.

I mean, we saw the 12 weeks of paid leave scaled down to four weeks that was passed by the House. But he’s been a no-go on paid leave, saying that he believes something like that, that kind of entitlement, should not be done through budget reconciliation, a partisan process, but through — negotiated through a regular kind of form of Congress.

So I expect him to continue to stand strong and to stand firm. And some of those Green New Deal initiatives, he’s been successful in the past at keeping them out. It wouldn’t surprise me if he’s successful again as this bill goes through the Senate.

PAYNE: And yet, Laura, most political observers think something will eventually go through. And President Biden has already said, whatever comes to his desk, he’s going to sign it.

So should we expect some portion of this bill to become law?

LAURA FINK, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Absolutely.

I mean, we know that Senator Manchin holds the pen and the gavel. And so he will be making some determinations. But there are extraordinarily popular items in this bill, lowering prescription drug costs, expanding Medicare, making sure that child care, that the — largely the women of America are helped, with some families paying up to 35 percent of their income in child care.

All of that would be helped by the Build Back Better plan. And Joe Manchin knows that, and he will see it through the Senate, on his terms, but it will get done and it will help Democrats in the next year.

PAYNE: Yes, although I got to tell you, the stuff I’m reading, all those things aren’t as popular as that.

ONWUKA: But you know what, Charles?

PAYNE: That’s mostly a sound bite.

Go ahead, Patrice.

FINK: Really? I mean, there’s polling behind my sound bite.

ONWUKA: Well, and you know what is not popular?

Inflation. Inflation is — Laura, inflation is not popular with the American people. And I just saw a poll out today from Rasmussen saying that over — I think a plurality, maybe even half of Americans recognize that there’s a connection between massive federal spending and inflation.

So, you’re going to pump another $ 2 trillion into the economy and not expect inflation to get any better? I think Americans are really smart. And I think those who are holding onto this idea that it is not is not going to.

(CROSSTALK)

FINK: Patrice, I appreciate that. I appreciate that.

This is a spending bill that is over time. This isn’t like — this isn’t the Rescue Plan. It’s very different. And it’s over time. And it’s — and I’m surprised that, as a representative of the Independent Women’s Forum, that you are not a fan of helping child care, of helping women get back into the work force or to stay home if they want with the child…

PAYNE: I don’t think that’s what she said.

ONWUKA: I’m a fan…

FINK: I will just finish.

Or to stay home if they want, with that child tax credit potentially enabling them to do so. This is a bill that would benefit getting women back into the work force, if they want to, and staying home with their kids, if they choose to.

PAYNE: Patrice, the problem, though, some people are saying this is unlike other plans, similar plans in the past, where you had that show an effort that you wanted to work.

Conceivably, you could get on this, never even go to work, never have to get a skill, never have to go to school. And you would just simply always be paid to stay at home, which, for a lot of folks, is not only just anti- American, but you’re doing a disservice to your household and your family…

FINK: Lifting 10 million children out of poverty?

PAYNE: … because you’re creating a cradle-to-grave circumstance.

Patrice, your thoughts on that?

FINK: Lifting children out of poverty?

PAYNE: No, listen, that poverty gimmick — listen, you’re talking to someone who was in poverty.

FINK: Absolutely, Charles. I mean, 10 million children out of poverty, Charles.

(CROSSTALK)

PAYNE: Laura, give me a break for one second, because if my house is making $ 26,000 to $ 28,000, I’m still at the bottom. I’m still not making much.

And if you tell me I’m getting a higher minimum wage, I’m still getting minimum wage.

So, I just want Patrice…

FINK: I don’t understand anything you just said.

PAYNE: Since you attacked her womanhood — we have got 30 seconds left.

Let Patrice answer, please.

(CROSSTALK)

FINK: … still lift 10 million children out of poverty.

(CROSSTALK)

PAYNE: Patrice, you were challenged as a woman. You were challenged as a woman here, and I will give you 30 seconds to respond.

ONWUKA: Thank you, Charles.

Yes, as a woman, I actually want parents to be able to make the best child care options for themselves, and not have private options squeezed out because of government subsidies for them. I mean, we can have discussions about child care, about universal pre-K, and how we can take care of our little ones.

But it should be done in a bipartisan measure. And this is not bipartisan. This is absolutely just the far left pushing forward their narrative. And I think parents want control.

(CROSSTALK)

PAYNE: All right, ladies, that’s all the time we have. There’s only 20 seconds left in the show.

(CROSSTALK)

FINK: The Republicans have left the field.

PAYNE: I wish we had more time. But we will pick this up again.

In the meantime, you will be so grateful Neil’s back tomorrow.

(LAUGHTER)

PAYNE: In the meantime, though, you can catch me every weekday 2:00 p.m. on the FOX Business Network on “Making Money.” Believe me, the market is all over the place. It is a little worrisome. I got your back.

In the meantime, here comes “THE FIVE.”

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