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Peter Navarro on how executive orders are put together

Former White House trade adviser Peter Navarro reacts to Biden signing 28 executive orders during his first few weeks in office.

Video Transcript

MARCO RUBIO: Very concerned about the policies because they sound like a checklist of all the dreams of the radical left that are being put in place by executive order. Unprecedented-- over 35, at last count, in less than a week.

MARIA BARTIROMO: That was Florida Senator Marco Rubio raising the red flag on President Biden's signing blitz when he joined me last week on Fox News "Prime Time." Before an executive order reaches the president's desk, it must first be vetted. It's vetted by the Department of Justice, which begs the question, how are 17 of these executive orders ready to go and waiting for President Biden to sign minutes after inauguration on day one?

Former White House Trade Advisor Peter Navarro prepared executive orders for President Trump. He knows the process better than most. Peter, good morning to you. Good to see you. So let's talk about that, in terms of the executive orders, what is the process, Peter? Take us through so that we can better understand how it was that President Biden was able to get so many EOs out on day one.

PETER NAVARRO: Sure, Maria. In my term, four years at the White House, I probably drafted over 50 of these orders. What you have to do is make sure you have the statutory authority to do what you're going to do. And the last check box that needs to be done is that the Department of Justice for what's called "form in legality."

Now, here's the news behind the news. Bill Barr, President Trump's attorney general, actually turns out to be also Joe Biden's first attorney general. Because here was what was happening. We had over 30 executive orders cued after election day, ready to go, but we kept running into all these roadblocks and roadblocks and hurdles.

It turns out that Bill Barr's Office of Legal Counsel was fast-tracking all of these Biden EOs. And basically it was a deep state coup. Now, this has implications, Maria. I'll tell you about one that got away from us, and I'll tell you about one that Biden did.

The first one that Biden did is an abomination. We did a beautiful executive order. I worked with Bruce Walker and Dan Brouillette over at the Department of Energy, and Mark Menzies, to basically prevent the communist Chinese from selling bulk power equipment into our electricity grid. If we ever have a conflict with China, they're much more likely to pull down our electricity grid using cyber attacks than they are to, say, drop a bomb on us. Why? Because that's modern warfare Chinese style. So we had this beautiful order.

One of the orders that Bill Barr helped Joe Biden do was to basically unwind that order. So bad news there. But at the same time, I was trying--

MARIA BARTIROMO: Yeah. Hold on, hold on.

PETER NAVARRO: --to get through this really good order on offshoring, and we couldn't get that through.

MARIA BARTIROMO: And that's the one that you worked on so much, offshoring. We want to take a break and come back and talk about that because I see what's happening here. Stay with us. We're talking with Peter Navarro, and we'll be right back. Welcome back. We're back with former White House Trade Advisor Peter Navarro. Peter, you were telling us about the executive orders that you drafted. And one that got away was on on-shoring because you say Bill Barr was working on the incoming administration's EOs as opposed to the outgoing administration's EOs.

PETER NAVARRO: Yeah, we got slow-walked at the Department of Justice. And this is a problem I told Barr about numerous times. And yeah, he should have been fired months before he was. By the last year of this administration he was really working against this administration in a lot of ways. And these executive orders were the bottleneck. The bottleneck was at the Department of Justice on so many things we did. But you can see what President Biden is doing now. He's just unwinding things that are going to come back to haunt the American worker big time.

MARIA BARTIROMO: Let me ask you about the economy. We have a $1.9 trillion stimulus package coming to Americans now with an economy that seems to have slowed a bit in the month of January. Your assessment?

PETER NAVARRO: In May of 2020, I was in the Oval Office with the president. We wanted to get a $2 trillion package passed, much like the one-- but we lost nine months now because Nancy Pelosi thought it would be better to stonewall that package and hope that President Trump lost on the economy. She got her wish, but she has killed thousands-- hundreds of thousands-- of small businesses. That's the scarring Janet Yellen has been talking about in her speech. And 2021 is going to be a tough time because those small businesses are gone. They ain't coming back.

MARIA BARTIROMO: We also are wondering about the policy regarding China. You worked so much on that. Hunter Biden got a $2 million advance for his new book. It is now on the bestseller list. "Beautiful Thing," it's called, by Hunter Biden, and he still has that investment in a Chinese company. Does that get in the way of policy?

PETER NAVARRO: Four minutes after Joe Biden got inaugurated, I went on the sanctions list of China along with Pompeo, Pott, Bannon, and others. And meanwhile, Hunter Biden, a crack addict who used influence peddling to profiteer in China with a top Chinese spy using his father's name to make money, is getting a $2 million book deal. Well, Josh Hawley-- yeah, Josh Hawley-- is getting his book contract burned. That's an abomination.

MARIA BARTIROMO: That's true. Wow. Peter Navarro, always a pleasure. Good to see you, sir. Have a good Sunday.