Obama's Gun Grab; Oregon Standoff Continues; Iran Shows Off More Missiles; Trump Phenomenon; Obama's Executive Action on Gun Control; Oregon

DOBBS-TONIGHT-01

TONIGHT-01

Missiles; Trump Phenomenon; Obama's Executive Action on Gun Control; Oregon

Standoff - Part 1>

Cameron, Dan Springer, Jack Keane>

Guns; Land; Government; Iran>

LOU DOBBS, HOST: Good evening, everybody. I'm Lou Dobbs.

President Obama today trampling on the 2nd Amendment, Congress, picking a fight with Republicans and the American people, the president using his executive powers to bypass Congress and go straight after our guns, expanding background checks for gun buyers, the president tearing up as he announced his new fiat and recalled the Sandy Hook shooting.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Every time I think about those kids, it gets me mad. And by the way, it happens on the streets of Chicago every day.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DOBBS: Well, the president's controversial action sure to spark legal challenges. We'll be taking up the case here tonight on the broadcast.

Also tonight, Donald Trump set to hold a campaign rally in Claremont, New Hampshire, the second stop for Trump in his New England campaign swing that so far has been hugely successful.

Last night, more than 8,000 people showed up to hear Trump speak. By comparison, 600 people showed up to hear Hillary Clinton speak in Mason City, Iowa, last night. We'll be talking about this race with FOX News's Jedediah Bila, The National Review's Rich Lowry and Democratic strategist Hank Sheinkopf.

And the armed occupation of Oregon's Malheur National Wildlife Refuge stretching into a fourth day with no end in sight. The standoff began as a peaceful protest in support of the Hammond family, two local ranchers sent to prison because they set fires on federal land 20 years ago.

But Oregon lawmakers are still ignoring the plight of the Hammonds, father and son. All seven members of the delegation have been absolutely silent through this outrage. We'll be talking with the senior investigative reporter for The Oregonian newspaper here tonight.

Our top story, President Obama's gun grab. The president today unveiled, as promised, his new executive orders on gun control, the move quickly savaged by critics who say it's an unlawful assault on Americans' constitutional rights.

FOX News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen has our report.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JAMES ROSEN, FOX CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Flanked in the East Room by citizens impacted by gun violence, President Obama announced 10 new executive actions aimed at restricting access to firearms in an address that was by turns eloquent and emotional, angry and scornful of opponents on the issue.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: So the gun lobby may be holding Congress hostage right now, but they cannot hold America hostage. All of us need to demand a Congress brave enough to stand up to the gun lobby's lies.

Our right to peaceful assembly -- that right was robbed from moviegoers in Aurora and Lafayette and from every family who never imagined that their loved one would be taken from our lives by a bullet from a gun.

ROSEN: Issued in the form of guidance to law enforcement agencies and federal rules, the president's actions include new licensing requirements for small-scale gun sellers, the hiring of 230 FBI employees to process background checks 24/7, provisions enabling states to share mental health information more easily, and new federal research into gun safety technology.

The National Rifle Association dismissed what it called the president's emotional, condescending lecture and released exclusively to FOX News a four-minute video in which NRA head Wayne LaPierre said his organization has fought for 20 years to get more felons and mentally disturbed individuals entered into the background check system and into which, he said, at present, 38 states enter less than 80 percent of their felony convictions.

WAYNE LAPIERRE, NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION: When you hear politicians who won't fix the broken system talk about expanding it, don't buy it. Demand what works. Enforce the federal gun laws against every criminal thug on the street.

ROSEN: Indeed, statistics compiled by Syracuse University show federal criminal firearms convictions have fallen sharply under President Obama, by more than 15 percent since 2010 and by nearly 35 percent since 2005.

QUESTION: So you agree there's a stark plunge (ph) (INAUDIBLE)

JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: They are, but they reflect decisions that are made by career prosecutors.

ROSEN: Republican House speaker Paul Ryan vowed to conduct vigilant oversight, while Republican presidential candidates cast Mr. Obama as a lawless chief executive.

SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It undermines the 2nd Amendment, and it will do nothing to keep people safe. Barack Obama is obsessed with undermining the 2nd Amendment!

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ROSEN: Elsewhere, I asked Josh Earnest if the president's reference to the NRA holding Congress and the American people hostage wasn't an example of the kind of divisive and violence-tinged language that the White House has previously deplored. Earnest said it was an apt metaphor -- Lou.

DOBBS: Of course. James, thanks so much -- James Rosen reporting from the White House.

Turning to the Republican race for the White House, Donald Trump tonight set to hold a campaign event in New Hampshire, Senator Ted Cruz in Iowa, where he's leading the polls with less than a month to go before the caucuses, and Senator Marco Rubio -- well, he's trying to stop the perception that Iowa is just a two-man race.

FOX News chief political correspondent Carl Cameron has the latest for us from the campaign trail.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CARL CAMERON, FOX CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Marco Rubio's turning it on!

SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And you're in Iowa, you get the first choice.

CAMERON: Running third in recent Iowa polls, he's shifting from optimistic policy wonk to more of the anger and fear over terrorism and chaos that front-runners Donald Trump and Ted Cruz have tapped into.

RUBIO: And defenses are being weakened and our foreign policy is being undermined by this president. So I just think this is an issue that's growing in prevalence as the days go by more and more.

CAMERON: Rubio hits Cruz for flip-flopping on immigration daily, despite Cruz's routine denials.

RUBIO: He has a right to change his position, but it's a different position.

CAMERON: He's also going after Chris Christie for expanding Medicaid in New Jersey and embracing other aspects of the Obama agenda.

RUBIO: We can't have another president who supports Common Core or gun control or expanding "Obama care." I mean, these are serious policy disputes.

CAMERON: Christie addressed an addiction forum in New Hampshire today, where the opioid and heroin epidemic is raging. Also attending were John Kasich, Jeb Bush and Carly Fiorina.

CARLY FIORINA (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is a battle we must fight.

CAMERON: Christie's gaining ground in New Hampshire and expanding operations in Iowa in hopes of overtaking Jeb Bush in the first caucuses, then winning the first primary.

GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R-NJ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What I think is happening is that my hard work is being rewarded.

CAMERON: Bush now casts himself as Trump's biggest critic and routinely stokes the right's fears that Trump will destroy the GOP brand.

JEB BUSH (R-FL), FMR. GOV., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The simple fact is, Donald Trump would help Hillary Clinton get elected.

CAMERON: Cruz continues to court evangelicals and home schoolers across Iowa with the help of faith leaders like Dr. James Dobson.

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Look, we allow non-believers to elect our leaders, we shouldn't be surprised when our government doesn't reflect our values!

CAMERON: But Mike Huckabee, winner of the 2008 Iowa caucuses and an ordained Baptist minister, who's also on a bus tour of Iowa, says evangelicals should think twice about Cruz, who's courting big donors and libertarian-leaning Tea Partiers with his support of states' rights under the 10th Amendment, which is often applied to same-sex marriage and the legalization of marijuana, among other things.

MIKE HUCKABEE (R-AR), FMR. GOV., PRES. CANDIDATE: Hold me accountable and hold any other candidate accountable if they're saying something different to the voters in Iowa and an evangelical audience than they're saying to the big donors in Manhattan.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CAMERON (on camera): Whether it's their Judeo-Christian values, their American values, their commitment to the Constitution, their own records or their plans for the future, the Republican race has now become a complex multi-state cage match that still probably won't be resolved even after the next eight weeks of voting -- Lou.

DOBBS: Let's hope it resolves, Carl, to American values. Carl Cameron reporting.

Turning now to the ongoing standoff in Oregon, residents of the small town of Burns, Oregon, say they have a lot of sympathy for the ranchers who were imprisoned on -- reimprisoned, if you will, on an arson conviction, but folks are voicing skepticism and considerable anger at the demonstrators and protesters, about two dozen of them who are holed up in a compound of federal buildings at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

FOX News correspondent Dan Springer, just outside of Burns, Oregon -- he has the latest for us.

DAN SPRINGER, FOX CORRESPONDENT: Lou, the stalemate continues even as opposition to the actions of these anti-government activists seems to be growing here in Harney County. The local sheriff said in no uncertain terms it's time for them to go and basically said, you know, this peaceful protests ended as soon as they took over these federal buildings behind me.

He was joined at his news conference by the chairman of the county board of supervisors, and yet Ammon Bundy held a news conference today saying his group has support from local ranchers who have been negatively impacted by government overreach when it comes to federal land management. Bundy says he has a plan, but it was vague, and he took no questions.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AMMON BUNDY, MILITIA LEADER: It is our goal to get the logger back to logging, to get the rancher back to ranching, to get the miner back to mining, the farmer back to farming and to jump start this economy in Harney County so that they can see their roads again filled with -- with industry.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SPRINGER: The nearest town is Burns. It's 30 miles away. And today we noticed an increase in law enforcement, a command center located in a school building. No school classes because they've been canceled. There were no heavy vehicles in sight, but a lot of different agencies, and according to a source, about 20 federal agents are in the area. They seem content to wait this thing out.

We spoke with a lot of people who live in the area around here. Almost all of them view these activists as outsiders who make some really good points but went too far.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don't want them here. We didn't ask them to come here. We like our refuge. We want it left alone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think their message is correct, but the method that they did is -- is totally wrong.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SPRINGER: A community meeting has been scheduled for 4:00 o'clock tomorrow afternoon in Burns. It'll give the citizens a chance to sound off on this showdown and let the officials know how it's affecting them -- Lou.

DOBBS: Dan, thank you very much -- Dan Springer reporting for us.

We're coming right back. A lot more to talk about. Stay with us.

Iran shows off another underground missile site. Will this lame duck president ever react to the Iranian insults and threats? General Jack Keane our guest here next.

And for two snorkelers, a boating trip quickly turned into a rescue. That video right after these messages. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DOBBS: Iran today unveiled more missiles, missiles capable of carrying nuclear devices during a tour of a new underground missile depot, the latest provocation broadcast on Iranian state television. It comes just days after the Iranian government vowed to expand its missile program, Iran growing increasingly defiant since last year's nuclear deal. It's conducted two missile tests just since October, and still no sanctions from this administration.

Joining us now, former Army vice chief of staff, FOX News military analyst General Jack Keane. General, good to see you. Happy new year. I -- I -- let's start with what in the world is -- should be the reaction of this president?

GEN. JACK KEANE, U.S. ARMY (RET.), FOX MILITARY ANALYST: Well, certainly, when the two missiles, medium-range missiles, were tested in total violation of U.N. security (sic) resolutions, sanctions should have been imposed immediately, not just sanctions against the companies involved, but U.N. resolution economic sanctions.

But the Iranians, foreign minister, calls secretary of state and the next thing you know, even the sanctions against the companies were withdrawn. So we have nothing but feckless response because the Iranians are still rattling the cage that if you do anything to us, this deal, the nuclear deal that they agreed to, may blow up in the United States' faces, and they're holding us hostage to that.

And it has been a sad commentary for a long time now, and look what it's doing to the region. The region is in absolute freefall as a result of it.

DOBBS: Without a response, a firm, effective and prompt response by this administration, the balance of power in the Middle East is now, frankly -- it's highly unstable, to say the least.

What is the future? Iran, Saudi Arabia in open breach, three other countries joining outright with Saudi Arabia in cutting diplomatic relations with the Iranians. The United Arab Emirates have toned down, if you will, their diplomatic relations and likely will cut those relations, as well.

What do you make of what's happening? What should we expect?

KEANE: Well, I think what's going to happen and what's driving it certainly is Iran has been marching towards regional domination for 35 years. So that's not new to Saudi or the other Arab states in the region, or even to the United States, for that matter, because we're painfully aware of how many Americans they killed in that 35-year march.

Secondly, they've been in pursuit of a nuclear weapon for 15 years. So these geological -- geopolitical objectives that they've had are not new. What is new is that the United States disengaged from our allies and tried to make a deal with the Iranians, and every single policy decision that we made in the Middle East for the last nine years has been through the prism of that reality, that that arrangement with the Iranians at the expense of our allies or any action has taken precedence.

So what is happened is, there's a huge void there. Russia, interesting enough, is stepping in here very aggressively...

DOBBS: Right.

KEANE: ... in multiple arms deals with Arab countries, trying to build nuclear power plants. And believe me, they're not going to be concerned about highly enriched uranium or not in building those nuclear power plants. This situation is getting considerably more dangerous.

DOBBS: And we should point out, with the onset of Russian influence and now the building of that influence -- they -- their partner is Iran, and that partnership is an axis in the Middle East now that can't be -- that, frankly, I don't believe we can find a countervailing force without the United States. Do you?

KEANE: No. And that's what's got our Arab allies so concerned. And the other accelerant here is the new leadership in Saudi Arabia, Lou, King Salman, but particularly the deputy crown prince, Prince Salman (ph) -- right

KEANE: ... youthful, in his 30s. He's a visionary but he's also very aggressive. And he made the decision to go into Yemen and stand up against the Iranian proxies, the Houthis.

DOBBS: Right.

KEANE: And they are moving in this direction. He's made the decision to keep oil prices where they're at, and the Saudis are keeping up full production because why? They don't want this $150 billion windfall to be $150 billion worth of capital. They want it to be considerably less, and they're doing it at somewhat at the expense of their own economy.

DOBBS: Right.

KEANE: This is how dead serious they are in dealing with the Iranians, and there is no United States there to assist and achieve stability in the region because we are no longer players.

DOBBS: The idea that this president would continue, given all of the provocation and defiance from the Iranians -- would continue on any basis to provide the $150 billion frozen assets that have been held in abeyance from the Iranians for so long -- this is sheer madness!

I mean, General, give me your insight I mean, when the national security team for this president sits around in their office and looks at one another, do they understand that there is not a single success for this administration and this president and that they're an abject embarrassment to him?

KEANE: Yes, I just think, right from the beginning, I believe from my sources, these ideas with the Iranians came up, actually, during the transition in -- you know, from November to January after he was elected. And I think once the president had formulated in his mind that he wanted to do this, any substantive opposition to this over the ensuing seven-plus years have fallen by the wayside.

And he has advisers around him, I think, who are just locked in to his ideology and what that portends for the region, what it meant in terms of Iraq, what it means in terms of Afghanistan. And he's unmovable, and therefore, he doesn't get countervailing advice.

DOBBS: Yes, countervailing advice from a group of folks that seems to be, well, not intellectually blessed nor blessed in any other physical (ph) way that might be helpful to standing on principle in the interests of the country.

General Jack Keane, good to have you here.

KEANE: Good talking to you, Lou.

DOBBS: Be sure to vote in tonight's poll. And our question -- we want to have a little fun tonight with all that's going on in the new year and the difficult challenges. So the question is, Would you invest in a citizen fund to buy out the remainder of Barack Obama's term in office? Now, this assumes, of course, that we could all agree on a price. Now, what is it they say, there's no such thing as exorbitant price, only a price that no one will pay. I think the numbers are going to get pretty high. We'd like to hear from you. Cast your vote at Loudobbs.com.

Remember, all in fun. Well, most of it in fun. Follow me on Follow me on Twitter at Loudobbsnews, like me on Facebook, follow me on Instagram at Loudobbstonight, links to everything found at Loudobbs.com.

Well, stunning video coming out of Spain tonight. Two whale spotters became unlikely heroes. They discovered a fin (ph) whale tangled in illegal fishing lines. These brave men, armed with their snorkels and knives, rescued the struggling animal, cutting the ropes and netting and the mines (ph) before removing hooks from the mouth of the whale.

These men followed the whale for as long as they could after the hour-long rescue to make sure the whale was back to normal and swimming again. And that is precisely the result. Good for them.

Up next, a few thoughts on the greatest gun salesman who ever lived, at least in this country.

And we'll introduce you to the company trying to make quad copter drones a thing of the past. No, they just got here! Well, they've got a drone that looks more like -- well, we shouldn't tell you. We won't show you until after these messages. Soon, I promise you, soon. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DOBBS: A few quick thoughts on the president's latest fiat, Mr. Obama announcing his executive action against guns with a lot of fanfare today, once again exploiting willing supporters, surrounding himself with the family members of some killed in shootings, all of them arranged as political props for a president who has become incapable of reason and persuasion on seemingly every issue and who can't build national consensus on difficult and controversial matters and who instead proclaims unilateral fiats that are undemocratic, they're unrepresentative of the people's will, and all the while he plays the part of a tinhorn dictator.

The president allowed tears to roll down his cheek when talking about Newtown and barely mentioning the city of Chicago, his -- his hometown, the murder capital of the country year in and year out. And this just might be a first where he even mentioned Chicago, certainly with a tear rolling down his cheek.

The president wiped away his tears just long enough to slam critics who say his latest fiat is, well, an assault on constitutional rights.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No matter how many times people try to twist my words around -- I taught constitutional law. I know a little bit about this.

But I also believe that we can find ways to reduce gun violence consistent with the 2nd Amendment. The gun lobby may be holding Congress hostage right now, but they cannot hold America hostage.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DOBBS: That's not only pathetic rhetoric devoid of any meaning. America, if anything, is hostage to a lame duck president. And with his latest fiat on guns, I believe President Obama is effectively making criminals out of thousands of Americans who sell guns by his decree to expand background checks.

Through such action, Mr. Obama has become the greatest gun salesman in the history of this country! Since he took office, the shares of just two gun makers, Smith & Wesson as well as Sturm Ruger, are up more -- are you ready for this? -- have risen more than 900 percent!

To put that in some perspective, the S&P gained about 140 percent over that same time period. And in 2015, the FBI conducted a record number of background checks on gun sales, more than 23 million, including 3.3 million last month alone. Merry Christmas.

This president is ending his reign as he began it, seeming to pose a greater danger to the rights of American citizens that he should be serving than to the enemies of the nation. And that -- that is a sad, sad legacy not only for Mr. Obama but for all of us.

Our quotation of the evening, this one from Thomas Jefferson, who said, "A Bill of Rights is what the people are entitled to against every government, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference." It's not guesswork, it's our Constitution, and it's declarative.

We're coming right back.

President Obama today doing it again. He's boosting gun sales dramatically even as he announces his plans to limit gun ownership.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It gets me mad.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DOBBS: So we have begun the year the president said he wouldn't waste. Jedediah Bila, Hank Sheinkopf and Rich Lowry on how he's doing so far.

And these pedestrians are in for a nasty surprise. We'll show you why in the video coming up here next.

Stay with us. We're coming right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DOBBS: You know there are some in the liberal national media who can't comprehend the Trump phenomenon. More than 8,000 people showed up to Trump's rally last night in Lowell, Massachusetts, braving temperatures in the teens to get there. That's become something of a typical Trump event. Yet the "Washington Post" described it as quote, "absolutely mind- boggling".

Joining us not to boggle our minds: author, columnist, Fox News contributor Jedediah Bila; Democratic strategist Hank Sheinkopf; editor of the "National Review", Fox News contributor Rich Lowry. Well, it's boggle time.

I get a kick out of the fact that apparently the "Washington Post" got the clue before the Republican establishment, Jedediah?

JEDEDIAH BILA, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: You know, what I love about Trump is he seems to aggravate all the right people. All the people that I want unnerved seems to be unnerved by him. so that works out for me.

Look, I don't know what the surprise is, why people are confused as to what people love about him. He's straight up. He's direct. He's entertaining. I mean do you want to go sit in a room and listen to Hillary Clinton. You'll fall asleep. Or Jeb Bush for that matter?

This is a guy -- he's charismatic, he's entertaining, he makes you laugh. He says thing that are blunt that people are thinking at home. That's why they're there.

HANK SHEINKOPF, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: There are people who say blunt things at particular times when they fit the particular moments. Spiro Agnew did it -- ok, well-scripted but he did it. Huey Long did it. Donald Trump is doing it -- and these are phenomenons around the individual people that don't have long trajectories.

We're not going to see somebody like this again very quickly. It's him, only to him, only he can get away with it right now.

DOBBS: You plucked from history too rather, let's say --

RICH LOWRY, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: I love Agnew references, they're not nearly enough of them. Lou, I do think --

DOBBS: -- the taxes.

LOWRY: That event in Lowell was notable, you know. It's below freezing, it's at night and he packs the place to the rafters.

DOBBS: In response to Chris Christie -- Governor Christie, he says show time is over. Who starts a show with show time is over?

SHEINKOPF: It's ridiculous.

DOBBS: I don't even know what to make of these people who call themselves establishment candidates.

LOWRY: No one has yet figured how to take him on. The one guy who may have figured it out is not taking him on and that's Ted Cruz, and he's tiptoeing around him and above him in Iowa. And that's -- if Donald Trump at this point wants to win Iowa, I believe he needs to go very negative against Ted Cruz.

SHEINKOPF: I think that's correct.

DOBBS: You know, I don't know if it matters about winning Iowa. Huckabee won it, Santorum won it, and who do they end up being?

BILA: I know I love when people talk about Iowa like it's some indicator for the rest of the country -- the pulse of the nation.

DOBBS: It's the barometer.

BILA: Yes, I'm just not getting. I don't think it matters. And I don't think it's going to help him to go negative on Ted Cruz because I think a lot of that negativity that's been coming at Ted Cruz from other candidates has only helped Ted Cruz. I think he's another guy the conservatives feel really strongly about and it's very hard to shake them when it comes to their sense of his reliability.

DOBBS: Is it a two-man race right now effectively?

SHEINKOPF: Effectively it is a two-person race, and Iowa will be determinate to some extent. But the difference here is that rules the Republicans once had in how to pick a presidential nominee have changed dramatically. There are no more --

DOBBS: What are they going to do adopt a Democratic model?

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