Dana Perino has a towering presence in Fox News programming, including anchor and hosting roles on “America’s Newsroom” and “The Five.”
She also measures in at 5-feet-tall, a fact not lost on “The Five” co-host Greg Gutfeld when he took the reins from Perino on Thursday during a roundtable discussion on the homeless crisis in New York City and Los Angeles.
Perino had been telling a story in which she was forced off a New York City sidewalk by an apparent homeless person pushing a cart.
“I agree to everything the little lady says,” Gutfeld said, half-pointing with his thumb to Perino, sitting directly to his right. “And I’m sorry about the cart.”
Perino and Gutfeld often trade witty barbs and banter, and Gutfeld also holds another role at Fox News as the host of a late-night talk show, during which the reference would have potentially played to more laughs than just Perino’s. But Perino is also a veteran news anchor whose career dates to a stint as the White House press secretary during the George W. Bush administration.
While it took her a beat to register Gutfeld’s reference to her as “the little lady,” she laughed it off, and he continued.
TheWrap has reached out to Fox News for comment on Gutfeld’s remark.
During her take, Perino went in on the homeless crisis with a personal story, first mentioning the Declaration of Independence and “the taxpayers’ pursuit of happiness.”
“I was walking to work, and this guy tries to run me off the sidewalk yelling, ‘No! No! No!’ with his big cart,” Perino said. “And I just jumped out of the way. But I had to jump into the street where all the crazy bikers are.”
Perino then hit the well-tread talking points when it comes to the homeless crisis before offering up a closing thought by crediting a San Diego homeless woman who had appeared in a clip “The Five” aired earlier in the segment.
“The solution is, listening to the homeless,” Perino said. “Like the woman who says, ‘We are spoiled — we need tough love or we’re never going to get off the street.’”
For his part, Gutfeld went on to explain how people tackling the problem need to take their collective gloves off and get tough.
“There’s this assumption on the part of ‘the feelers’ — like Jessica and Jesse’s mother — that ‘the unfeelers, that is me and Jesse, we don’t consider the empathy, the empathetic stance,” Gutfeld said, referring to liberal co-host Jessica Tarlov and co-host Jesse Watters, who earlier this week called out his mother on-air over a political discussion they had during a Sunday dinner. “We have actually. That’s the first rung of the ladder. We’re just on the fifth or sixth rung of the ladder.
“We’ve been through the empathy part,” Gutfeld continued. “We’re now to a different stage, and we want everybody else to join us because it’s been an uphill battle dealing with this issue when you live in the city, and that’s because the empathy class has made the homeless class the protected class.”
You can watch the full segment in video at the top of this page.