updated 10/11/2006 3:40:43 PM ET 2006-10-11T19:40:43

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST:  We have some breaking news in this Mark Foley sex scandal.  Just moments ago, we learned that a House Republican leader is calling for an investigation into alleged reports that Mark Foley visited page dorm rooms while drunk, had to be led away by police officers.

With us now on the phone with the latest from Capitol Hill tonight, the man that brought us the story, NBC‘s Mike Viqueira.  Tell me, what is going on on Capitol Hill?

MIKE VIQUEIRA, NBC CORRESPONDENT:  Joe, this story gets more tragic and more bizarre with every evening, every minute here.  It turns out that last night, the GOP conference had a conference call, sort of crisis management, where all 232 House Republicans are invited to call in and get a bearing on where everything is in the status of this scandal.

Last night on that call, rumors—and I repeat, they are rumors—were brought up by at least one congressman, Roger Wicker of Mississippi, who alleged that there was an incident within the last several years when former congressman Foley came to the House page dorm, which is just south of the Capitol, just a few blocks south, in an intoxicated state, was stopped by the Capitol police from entering the page residence hall.

And on the same conference call, there was another claim that the director of Republican pages had specific concerns about Foley and his behavior and brought that to the attention of the then clerk of the House, a man named Jeff Trandahl.  Subsequent to that, we‘ve just received copies of two letters, one written by Deborah Pryce.  She‘s the fourth-ranking House Republican.  She‘s from Ohio...

SCARBOROUGH:  She‘s a chairwoman...

(CROSSTALK)

VIQUEIRA:  ... GOP conference.  That‘s right.

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes, powerful woman.

VIQUEIRA:  She has sent a letter to the clerk now, a woman named Karen Hass, asking for an investigation.  She has CC‘ed the Capitol police.  And the majority leader, also from Ohio, John Boehner, had the same—has a letter to Karen Hass asking for the same thing.  He says, “It‘s been brought to my attention that an alleged incident may have occurred in years past involving former representative Foley.”  We don‘t know when this happened.  The details are very vague, and I do repeat that it is a rumor.

SCARBOROUGH:  WEll, Mike, one thing that‘s not a rumor is the fact that also today, Kirk Fordham, a guy that I‘ve known personallyk since 1994, a guy that was Mark Foley‘s chief of staff until, I think, 2001, 2002, also told the Associated Press that he went to the Speaker‘s office several years ago and warned them of Mark Foley‘s inappropriate behavior.

And again, those two guys politically were as close as any two people on Capitol Hill.  It looks like the Speaker of the House is the odd man out, and everybody around the Speaker is calling for investigations.  What‘s it all mean?

VIQUEIRA:  Well, you‘re right.  Kirk Fordham threw a parting gift over the castle wall on his way over the moat.  I mean, it just exploded here.  You know, the Speaker has spent a number of days since this thing broke on Thursday and Friday, saying he just learned about the e-mails, and some of his top lieutenants have said that, actually, they told him in the spring, including Tom Reynolds and John Boehner.

The thing had started to quiet down.  The Speaker had got a letter of support from leaders—conservative leaders within the House GOP, Mike Pence and Joe Pitts.  And then a couple hours later, it turns out that Kirk Fordham was asked to leave the chief of staff job for Tom Reynolds.  And on his way out, he said that, No matter I said—and he had been quoted in the last couple of days as saying that he was as surprised as anyone.  Now he‘s saying that he told Scott Palmer, the chief of staff to House Speaker Hastert, prior to 2005, and he told other top House leadership staff, he says, that this was a concern of his.

And I should add that Scott Palmer has issued just a very brief statement saying, “What Kirk Fordham has said is not true.”

SCARBOROUGH:  That is unbelievable news, and of course, it‘s unbelievable news because I have—I have never seen—I didn‘t even see it when Newt Gingrich was run out of town by a lot of us in 1998.  I have never seen as many leaders seem to turn on the Speaker of the House the way that Denny Hastert‘s been turned on, which means, obviously, the Republican Party feels like it‘s in a lot of trouble.

It seems like Denny Hastert‘s a dead man walking on Capitol Hill, doesn‘t it.

VIQUEIRA:  Well, you know, the wheels seem to be coming off the wagon here.  You had the number three in line, the whip, Roy Blunt, today in Missouri making statements that some interpreted as getting distance between himself and the Speaker, so that makes, Boehner, Blunt, Reynolds.  And it—you know, Denny Hastert—you know better than I, Joe—is much beloved for his personable style, his unassuming style.  He came in after Gingrich.  He calmed things down.  He was the antidote for what was ailing the House GOP at the time.  He got away from sort of the bombastic style.  He‘s been quietly effective.  And a lot of people have really not wanted to turn against him.  At least, that‘s the feeling I‘m getting here among the rank and file.

SCARBOROUGH:  Right.

VIQUEIRA:  But it doesn‘t—you know...

SCARBOROUGH:  Well...

VIQUEIRA:  You said he‘s dead man walking.  I can‘t say that, but it doesn‘t—you know, it doesn‘t look real good at this point .

SCARBOROUGH:  It does not look real good when all of your lieutenants are basically pointing fingers at you and demanding investigations.  Hey, thanks so much, Mike.

VIQUEIRA:  You‘re welcome.

SCARBOROUGH:  Greatly appreciate your work on the Hill, some breaking news.  We really appreciate him bringing it to us.

Right now, let‘s bring in MSNBC political analyst Pat Buchanan, Ana Marie Cox, she‘s Washington editor for Time.com.  We also have political analyst Lawrence O‘Donnell.  He‘s also the former executive producer of “The West Wing.”

Lawrence, it looks like Republicans are all shooting at Denny Hastert. 

Looks like this ship is going down fast.

LAWRENCE O‘DONNELL, POLITICAL ANALYST:  Yes, I agree with you, Joe.  And it‘s very clear that Kirk Fordham would not have taken the shot today if he didn‘t believe that Hastert was on the way out already.  What that move was today was actually to help protect his current boss, who‘s an incredible fight for his life now electorally in Buffalo.  So you‘re seeing people deciding who they‘re going to protect at this stage of the game.

But there‘s a new star to this story every day, Joe.  Today‘s star was

Fordham.  Tomorrow‘s might be someone else at the staff level.  And I think

what the Republican base is going to be shocked by over the next week or so

this is the next stage of this story as it will develop—is how many closeted gay Republican men were involved in processing this information about the closeted gay man, Mark Foley, when these stories emerged in the House of Representatives.

SCARBOROUGH:  And we‘re going to talk about that in our next segment, actually, because I—there are several closeted gay Republicans in Washington.  I‘m going to talk to Al Franken about that next segment.  But Ana...

O‘DONNELL:  But Joe, this is very, very important piece of the story.  This is going to be part of where we track the information about how it flowed.  And it‘s going to be a very important question on the staff level, not necessarily on the elected level.  But people are going—the Republican base is going to be shocked...

SCARBOROUGH:  And I...

O‘DONNELL:  ... when they discover within a week where the closetted gay men are positioned in this story who have not yet been revealed.

SCARBOROUGH:  And Ana, you were talking about—earlier with me—we were talking about the fact that the Republican Party has some issues on the gay issue.

ANA MARIE COX, WASHINGTON EDITOR, TIME.COM:  They do.  They have a kind of split personality about it.  On the one hand, they have a base who is largely, not to be put too fine point on it, pretty homophobic, and they really count on that.  They got out the vote by campaigning against gay marriage in the past few years.

And on the other hand, they have a somewhat more sophisticated, somewhat more worldly, let‘s say, elected leadership who not only know gay people but know gay Republicans and work with gay Republicans.  And Lawrence is right.  At the staff level, the House has quite a few gay people.  And those are the people—they are the “velvet Mafia” of the House, of the Hill, and those are the people that are counted on to keep the other closeted members of Congress and staff members in line, and that is how they tried to deal with Foley this time around.

SCARBOROUGH:  Pat Buchanan, in Pensacola, Florida, during the 2004 election, conservative Christians stood in the rain for hours to vote for George Bush.  Those so-called “values voters” made the difference in 2004.  I got to believe that this story, as it breaks, will keep them at home, and it will ensure that this Republican Party is in the minority and Nancy Pelosi will be the next Speaker of the House.

PAT BUCHANAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST:  Well, look, Joe, they‘ve got to be very disgusted with all the cover-up for this pervert in their own midst, who obviously was doing more than folks knew, and they should have known this.  But secondly, you got the Republicans presenting an awful picture of turning on one another, pointing fingers.  There‘s no leadership out here.  Look, if you got a scandal like that, the thing to do is go in, cauterize the thing, cut it out, put up a defenses perimeter and started fighting back!

SCARBOROUGH:  And it looks like that‘s what they‘re...

BUCHANAN:  Have you seen anybody...

SCARBOROUGH:  ... trying to do.  It looks—it looks like they‘re all turning on Denny Hastert.  They‘re basically saying he was asleep at the switch.  You‘ve got all the leaders, you‘ve got Deb Pryce, you‘ve got John Boehner, you got Tom Reynolds all blaming Denny Hastert.

BUCHANAN:  Well, look, Joe, here‘s what you need to do is put up a phalanx, a defense perimeter, start fighting back, say, Look, let‘s get all these pages in here and reveal the names of any and all congressmen and aides of both parties who‘ve solicited them or made untoward advances toward them.  Go on the offensive and fight, for heaven‘s sakes!

SCARBOROUGH:  Ana, you...

BUCHANAN:  This is appalling!

SCARBOROUGH:  ... disagree with that?

COX:  Well, I just don‘t think that this is a problem of the magnitude that Pat seems to be describing.  I don‘t think that—you know, some—a blogger called the page program a “sexual romper room,” which implies it‘s somewhat safer maybe than it actually is.  I don‘t think that the page program is really the issue here, although that would be a very smart thing publicity-wise for the Republicans to do.

In fact, if you look at Foley‘s actual conduct, the thing that you just uncovered, the breaking news, him showing up at the page dorm, is actually I think the only incident we know of where he actually had some kind of inappropriate behavior with a page that was a current page.  All of the e-mails and all of the instant messages took place with pages that were former pages, which goes to show, I think, that he Foley knew that the pages, while they were on the Hill, were actually fairly well protected.

SCARBOROUGH:  Lawrence O‘Donnell, I think the Republican Party is doomed.  I think even if they throw Denny Hastert overboard, that does absolutely nothing to save him.  What do you say?

O‘DONNELL:  I agree with you, Joe.  This is one of those things where there‘s no good political choice to make.  The story is completely out of control.

I just want to stress, today it moved to the staff level.  It‘s going to stay now at the staff level for the next news cycle.  This is now a very, very important staff credibility issue.  The battle between Kirk Fordham and Scott Palmer, who, as reported in the initial report tonight on your show—Scott Palmer, chief of staff for Denny Hastert, who is denying, very specifically denying that he was ever told that there was a problem with Foley by Fordham.  Now, that is a crucial—those two guys are going to become the stars of this story over the next couple of days, and it‘s going to make the story something different.

SCARBOROUGH:  And Pat Buchanan, just explain, if you will, what happens.  When you have a staff member like Kirk Fordham, a guy that came to Washington, D.C., and is probably going to make his living either as a lobbyist or as staff in Washington, D.C., for the next 20, 30 years—a guy like that doesn‘t turn on a sitting House Speaker unless he knows that sitting House Speaker is on his way out, does he.

BUCHANAN:  Well, it‘s not only that.  Look, what this fellow did—apparently, he did try to defend Foley as a friend—in other words, talk to the reporter and say, Don‘t do this.  Secondly, he‘s defending Reynolds, who‘s in trouble.  And third, he spun and turned on the Speaker.  That suggests to me that Reynolds sees himself in a fight for his life with or against the Speaker.

In this case—look, Denny Hastert‘s in serious trouble, Joe, but there‘s a larger problem here.  The Republican House doesn‘t know how to fight as a unit.  They‘re all turning on each other.  The damn—the press is all over their case.  They‘re running and hiding and saying, He did it, and I didn‘t know about Foley, and it‘s just a ridiculous—and there‘s +no reason to reelect a House that behaves like this!

SCARBOROUGH:  Pat, you know what it makes me long for?  The days of Ehrlichmann and Haldeman.  Now those guys knew how to circle the wagons, baby!

(LAUGHTER)

BUCHANAN:  Well, you know, we survived for 18 months and...

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  You sure as hell did!  You sure as hell did.  And if that helps you sleep better tonight, Pat Buchanan, then God bless you!  Pat, Lawrence and Ana Marie Cox, thanks so much for being us.  You can also check out Ana‘s blog—I do all the time, it‘s great—at Time.com.

Now, coming up, more on the Foley fall-out, including whether this scandal‘s going to drive other gay Republicans out of the closet.  Wait‘ll you hear Al Franken‘s take on this one, coming up next.  Plus, Foley‘s not the only person packing his bags for rehab.  We‘ll look at why blaming the bottle seems to be getting politicians and celebrities out of troulbe these days.  And later: Rosie O‘Donnell tests the limits of her Bill of Rights, using her freedom of speech to go after gun owners.  We‘ll show you here controversial comments in our SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY highlight reel of her out-of-control mouth.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, welcome back.  Breaking news in the Capitol sex scandal involving Mark Foley.  Now, we just learned a short time ago that two leading House Republicans are now calling for an investigation into claims that Foley actually showed up drunk at page dorms, seeming to turn on Denny Hastert, who they‘ve been attacking for not attacking this scandal aggressively enough.  And this comes just a day after it was announced publicly what many knew for a long time, that Mark Foley was a gay Republican.  I knew it.  He served in Congress since ‘95.

And that issue, gay Republicans in Congress, is a topic that keeps coming up.  It‘s a topic I also talked with Air America radio host Al Franken about, and also with David Bossie, a conservative who was lead investigator in the Clinton and Monica Lewinsky scandal.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

AL FRANKEN, “AL FRANKEN SHOW”:  There seems to be a strain of anti-gay gay Republicans in the Republican Party.

Can you guys explain this to me.  You‘re Republicans.  What is about anti-gay gay Republicans?  What is that strain?

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, David Bossie, isn‘t it true that there are...

FRANKEN:  David Bossie is not an anti-gay gay Republican.

SCARBOROUGH:  No, David is...

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  David Bossie...

FRANKEN:  Well—oh, oh!  You‘re just asking him a question?  I see.

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  Exactly.  Is it not the case, David, that there are—and we won‘t name any names, but there are gay members of the Republican Party in Congress right now that hold pretty powerful positions, that have not come out of the closet and that vote in a way that could be termed anti-gay?

DAVID BOSSIE, CITIZENS UNITED:  You know, Joe, I got to be honest with you.  I don‘t study those types of issues.  Those are things that are...

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes, but...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You don‘t have to study it, but you know.  I mean, just between you and me...

BOSSIE:  Joe, look...

SCARBOROUGH:  ... and nobody else...

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  I‘m being Connie CHung here!  There are gay leaders in the Republican Party in Washington, D.C., right?

BOSSIE:  There may be.  I don‘t know in the leadership.

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  There may be?  That was a Chris Matthews laugh.  There may be?

FRANKEN:  That was a Chris Matthews laugh.  I thought I was on “Hardball.”

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  Exactly.  Well...

BOSSIE:  Look—look, we don‘t—I personally don‘t know of any gay leaders...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, don‘t watch them in the bedroom, but I knew Mark Foley was gay when I met him in 1994.

BOSSIE:  But he‘s not in the leadership.  But he‘s not in the leadership.

SCARBOROUGH:  But there are people that are in powerful positions in Congress that are Republicans that are gay, right?

BOSSIE:  And that, I think, is probably true, yes.

SCARBOROUGH:  Probably true.

FRANKEN:  But what‘s weird about that is they vote in a very anti-gay way.  I mean, and it‘s just—it does—I got to tell you, it strikes people who believe in gay rights as just odd.

BOSSIE:  Look, guys, there are gay members of Congress on both sides of the aisle and...

FRANKEN:  Yes, but our gay guys don‘t vote like your gay guys.

(LAUGHTER)

BOSSIE:  Look, to me, this is a serious issue because...

FRANKEN:  I know!

BOSSIE:  I know you guys think it is, as well.  But look, we‘re talking about a child predator...

FRANKEN:  Right.

BOSSIE:  ... where he was walking the halls of Congress unbeknownst to the American people.  We don‘t—the American people—and I certainly don‘t in my town—want child predators walking my streets and I don‘t want them walking the halls of Congress.  And I think that that is what we come back to here.

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes.

BOSSIE:  And that is the sad state of affairs that Mark Foley brings us to.

SCARBOROUGH:  Where you‘re from, Al, in Minnesota...

FRANKEN:  Yes?

SCARBOROUGH:  ... do you think voters are going to be more concerned about Medicare part D when they go into the voting booth?  Will that have more resonance with rank-and-file voters, or do you think it‘ll be the Republican Party being the party of Foley, of DeLay, of Abramoff, of Cunningham and of Ney?

FRANKEN:  It‘s all part of the same thing, which is when one party runs everything, they lose touch with what—with people and they become arrogant.  And that‘s what you see here.  There is nothing conservative about the Republican Party right now.  It is a radical party.  You know what?  The Democratic Party right now is the liberal party in this country and the conservative party in this country.

BOSSIE:  Oh, that‘s—that‘s—that‘s...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  David, hold on a second.

FRANKEN:  That is true.

SCARBOROUGH:  Davvid...

FRANKEN:  We left you a surplus, my friend...

SCARBOROUGH:  David...

FRANKEN:  ... a $200 billion-a-year surplus.

BOSSIE:  You left us $157 billion surplus...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Hold on a second, David.  Hold on, David.

BOSSIE:  You left us a war on terror!

SCARBOROUGH:  David, do you contest Al‘s assertion that the Republican Party is no longer conservative?

BOSSIE:  As a conservative leader in Washington, D.C., I am incredibly disappointed...

SCARBOROUGH:  I mean, we‘re not...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  We‘re not a conservative party anymore, are we.

BOSSIE:  Well, no.  I‘m a leader in the conservative movement, and that‘s why...

SCARBOROUGH:  No, no.  You‘re conservative.  Right.  Right.

BOSSIE:  And that‘s why I‘m able...

SCARBOROUGH:  But as far as the congressional Congress—the congressional Republicans are not conservative, are they.

BOSSIE:  And that‘s right, Joe, and that‘s why I‘m able to honestly just step back and be able to say the things that need to be said.  The truth sometimes hurts.  And I don‘t care, really, if liberal Republicans lose.  I want conservatives to win.  I don‘t vote for them because they have an R next to their name.

SCARBOROUGH:  All right...

BOSSIE:  Just like Al, I hope, would say he doesn‘t vote for them just because they have a D next to their names.

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, we‘re going to have to leave it there...

FRANKEN:  Actually, I do.

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  You do?  Anybody that has a D after their name—all right, David Bossie...

FRANKEN:  Not anybody.  Not anybody, but just about.

SCARBOROUGH:  Thanks Al.  Thanks, David.  Appreciate it.

BOSSIE:  Thank you.

SCARBOROUGH:  And coming up next: Is it time to invest in HDTV?  David Letterman shows us the pros and cons in “Must See S.C.”  And later, how to handle a scandal, just enter rehab.  We‘ll show you why alcohol is quickly becoming an excuse for inexcuseable behavior.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  It‘s time for a late night edition of “Must See S.C.,” some video you just got to see.  First up, the Mark Foley scandal has provided red meat for late night comedians, and last night, Jay Leno didn‘t hold back.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAY LENO, HOST, “TONIGHT” SHOW:  The Republicans still don‘t get it.  Since Foley is off the ticket, did you see who they got to run in his place?  I got one of the campaign signs.  Look at this.  This is running in Florida.  You see?  It‘s John Mark Karr.

(LAUGHTER)

LENO:  Anyway, Mark Foley has gone into rehab.  Before he went in, I guess he had a little going-away party at his place.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Oh, really?

LENO:  Yes, a litlt going-away party.  Show the party from Foley‘s house today.  There he is.  Yes, some of the kids (INAUDIBLE), some of the pages.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh, that‘s awful!  And last week, we did a segment about Rosie O‘Donnell being the worst-looking celebrity on high definition TV, according to a survey.  Well, David Letterman was obviously watching that segment because last night, he found a celeb that looks worse than Rosie.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

David LETTERMAN, HOST, “LATE NIGHT WITH David LETTERMAN”:  Take a look at this comparison.  I think you‘ll be stunned.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh!  I got high definition.  He does look that way.

Coming up: Scandals check in, but they don‘t check out.  Rehab‘s becoming the destination of choice for celebrities and politicians on the hot seat.  Think I may do it myself soon!  but is it more of a refuge than rehabilitation?  And later: Rosie O‘Donnell shoots down the 2nd Amendment and her co-hosts.  Are Rosie‘s controversial views causing bad blood behind the scenes?  Her most outrageous comments on tape coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWSBREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  First, she took on Christians.  Now, Rosie O‘Donnell is taking aim at the Bill of Rights.  Just how out of control is “The View‘s” big-mouth host?  We‘ll go to the videotape and show you. 

And later, Paris Hilton in a nightclub smackdown.  The celebrity she allegedly went toe-to-toe with, let‘s hope that celebrity won.  The details ahead in “Hollyweird.”

Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  Those stories minutes away, but first it‘s a last bastion of hope for anybody caught up in embarrassing public scandals:  Check into rehab.  For Mel Gibson to Mark Foley, rehab centers always seem to be the next stop for high-profile figures right after their public apology.  So is a move to rehab just the oldest trick in the public relations handbook, or does it actually work? 

NBC‘s Michael Okwu tries to sort it out for us. 

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MICHAEL OKWU, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):  Mark Foley left it to his lawyer to explain the explicit instant messages with an underage congressional page... 

DAVID ROTH, ATTORNEY FOR MARK FOLEY:  Mark was under the influence of alcohol at the time that he sent the inappropriate e-mails and IMs.

OKWU:  ... and opened the door for late night punch lines. 

WANDA SYKES, COMEDIAN:  Alcohol might make you, you know, sleep with a fatty or pee on your neighbor‘s yard, but you don‘t turn into a pedophile. 

(LAUGHTER)

OKWU:  His lawyer, David Roth, says Foley is no pedophile and defended the rehab treatment.

ROTH:  He is recovering from the disease of alcoholism, and he is recovering from his mental issues. 

MICHAEL LEVINE, IMAGE CONSULTANT:  Today, the strategy seems to be instantly, within 24 hours, declare it an addiction and get into rehab.

MICHAEL KEATON, ACTOR:  You know, I think it would be a really good idea if I just avoided any outside pressure for a while.

OKWU:  Hollywood has satirized the idea of public figures ducking from scandal in rehab, but image experts say it happens in real life. 

Last month, Ohio Congressman Bob Ney checked into rehab the same day he agreed to plead guilty to corruption charges connected to the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal.  Rhode Island Congressman Patrick Kennedy checked back into August after cracking his car on Capitol Hill. 

PAT O‘BRIEN, TV PERSONALITY:  You are so hot.

OKWU:  And remember TV personality Pat O‘Brien‘s drunk dialing?  He said he was sick; critics said he was a cad.  Mel Gibson never checked into rehab but he declared he needed help for alcoholism after a DUI arrest and that anti-Semitic rant. 

ROBERT THOMPSON, SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY:  Ever since the Betty Ford Clinic, ever since the Oprah-fication of America, putting yourself into rehab for alcoholism is not that big of a deal.  If you can admit to one sin and go in for treatment for it, you can deflect the tension from the other sin, which is much less acceptable.

OKWU:  Whatever the true motivation, Richard Rogg, founder of Malibu‘s Promises, says famous patients often find recovery.

RICHARD ROGG, FOUNDER, PROMISES:  I‘ve seen so many people who come into Promises for the wrong reasons and leave with a spiritual awakening.

OKWU:  An awakening or fresh start, hoping the public can forgive a high-profile stumble. 

Michael Okwu, NBC News, Los Angeles.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCARBOROUGH:  And with us now to talk about it, our friend, media analyst Dr. Steve Adubato, who‘s also the author of the book, “Make the Connection.”  And also psychotherapist Dr. Robi Ludwig. 

You know, I‘m reminded, Mike, watching that of the old Simpsons episode where Lisa sees Bart praying and she says, “Ah, religion, last refuge of the truly desperate.”  In this case, it looks like rehab is that.

STEVE ADUBATO, MEDIA ANALYST:  Well, I‘ll tell you, Joe, I don‘t question Mark Foley.  I hope, if he really has a problem with drinking—you‘ve known him since 1994...

SCARBOROUGH:  ‘94.

ADUBATO:  I heard you say he didn‘t party too much when you knew him.

SCARBOROUGH:  Actually, I never saw him drunk.  I hardly remember him with a glass of alcohol in his hand. 

ADUBATO:  Well, Joe, what is he going to do?  He‘s Is going to go to rehab for sending inappropriate e-mails to 16-year-old pages?  He can‘t go to rehab for that.  He‘s not supposed to go to rehab because you‘re gay, because there‘s nothing wrong with that.  So what does he do?  He says, “I‘m going to rehab for alcoholism,” and when, in fact, it may or may not be true. 

It‘s a P.R. move, in my view.  It‘s cynical.  And it also does a disservice to all those Americans who are suffering with some sort of substance abuse problem, some problem, because there‘s real rehab that‘s needed.

SCARBOROUGH:  But doesn‘t this happen all the time, though?

ADUBATO:  I‘m not sure it‘s needed for him.  I think it‘s a bad P.R.  move.  It works for Kate Moss; it works for Mel Gibson.  It doesn‘t work for a politician.

SCARBOROUGH:  Why is that?

ADUBATO:  Because we hold politicians to—you know, public servants, I want to believe, Joe, to a higher standard.  And, by the way, he‘s not running for office again.  And Jim McGreevey, my old friend—not that way, but my friend in New Jersey—he went to a monastery for a month, not rehab.  It‘s the same sort of principle.  You go underground.  You go low-key.  You don‘t go public, but you‘re never going to run for office again.

SCARBOROUGH:  You can‘t hide from it.

ADUBATO:  It‘s over.

SCARBOROUGH:  And Mark Foley‘s rehab announcement didn‘t surprise or convince “The Daily Show‘s” Jon Stewart.  Take a look at his reaction last night. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JON STEWART, HOST, “THE DAILY SHOW”:  The big question, of course, for this congressman who is an online sex predator to 16-year-olds, what drove him to it? 

MAJOR GARRETT, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT:  Mark Foley has checked himself into an alcohol rehabilitation center. 

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Rehab for what he called alcoholism and related behavioral problems. 

CHARLES GIBSON, HOST, “ABC WORLD NEWS TONIGHT”:  ... saying a lifelong addiction to alcohol drove him to the inappropriate behavior. 

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Foley blamed alcohol. 

STEWART:  The sauce, sad juice, Satan‘s breast milk, Uncle Scotchy‘s anger-wrangler, the active ingredient in Nyquil.  That‘s why he did this thing, that, if not for alcohol, it never would have even crossed his mind. 

To be fair though, Mark Foley‘s problem wasn‘t that he drank.  It was what he drank, “Youngboyshlager.”  Now, it‘s got real bits of young boy in it!  You don‘t stand a chance!  Little, tiny bits of boy right there. 

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh, it‘s awful.  Now, Robi...

ADUBATO:  We shouldn‘t be laughing, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  We should not be laughing.  I‘m not laughing.  These are tears—this is laughter of sadness or whatever. 

DR. ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST:  Tears of sadness.

SCARBOROUGH:  Tears of sadness.  Robi, here you have Steve, and myself, and Jon Stewart, and a lot of people laughing.  Do you think that this might be a scam?  Do people, do celebrities and politicians use rehab as a way to escape? 

LUDWIG:  Well, I think you need to remember that, just because somebody‘s a celebrity or a politician, it doesn‘t mean that they don‘t have problems and that they are going to suffer from alcoholism and other mood disorders.  And why shouldn‘t they be able to go to rehab where they can actually get better? 

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s fine.  I guess if the problem, Robi, is that it seems that our society rewards celebrities who go into rehab.  We put them on the cover of “People” magazine, and everybody forgives them. 

LUDWIG:  I don‘t know if they‘re rewarded, but if they have problems, they do need to go to some place.  Listen, if they don‘t really have a problem, then a rehabilitation center should not be accepting them.  But if they do have a problem, then why not address it?  They are in the public eye.  Why should that be seen as a bad thing?  If it is exclusively a P.R.  move, then that‘s not wise, but they do have issues.

(CROSSTALK)

ADUBATO:  Because he waited until he got caught.  And here‘s the thing...

SCARBOROUGH:  But let me ask you this, and just to follow up on what I said before about people getting in trouble, they apologize, they go in “People” magazine.  This is like the secular version of confession for the Catholic Church.  You do it, and the sins are washed away.

ADUBATO:  You‘re not saying anything bad about confession, are you? 

Because I‘m going next week.  But here‘s the thing...

SCARBOROUGH:  It‘s good for the soul, I hear. 

ADUBATO:  It‘s good for the soul, but rehab—look, if the congressman has a problem, listen, I hope he gets all the help he needs.  But the problem is this, Joe:  If this had been going on for a long time and he was sending these e-mails, these clearly inappropriate e-mails, to pages who are 16 years old, then why, if he had this problem, did he wait to get caught and have a P.R. crisis on his hands?

LUDWIG:  Maybe this was his rock bottom.  You have to remember that, when people have issues, mood issues, that they hit rock bottom.  And when they get rock bottom, they get humiliated, and then they say, “Oh, my gosh.”  They can‘t deny having an issue.  Now, it‘s very possible this politician has not only a sex addiction, but he also has a mood disorder, an alcoholism.  You can have multiple addictions going on at the same time. 

ADUBATO:  But, Joe, the addiction that was most acceptable, the addiction that you could say you were going to rehab for, was either a drug, but in this case it‘s easier to call it an alcohol addiction.  I‘m not saying he doesn‘t have one, but he clearly knows and the people around him know that you can‘t say you have an addiction to young boys.  You can‘t say that. 

That may be true, but, frankly, if you were really, really looking to gain sympathy and have people be empathetic toward him, that sounds like more of the problem, because it‘s not new, because you didn‘t know him to drink and neither did others.  I‘m not saying it‘s impossible, but highly unlikely. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes, highly unlikely.  Again, I saw him in a lot of social settings and, again, never saw him tipsy at all. 

Now, I think, Dr. Ludwig, one of the problems is that, when you hear about a celebrity announcing that it‘s time for them to go into rehab, well, it‘s not exactly like they‘re about to do hard time.  And they go to places in California‘s Beaumont Rehab Center (ph) that offers very wealthy, discreet treatment for just the low cost of $79,000 for a four-week stay.

LUDWIG:  That‘s all.

SCARBOROUGH:  And their collective treatment includes art therapy, massages, personal training, gourmet meals, and, of course, a serene ocean view.  Again, it seems like there‘s been a real industry made out of this for Hollywood stars.  You get into trouble.

I saw Andy Dick last night on David Letterman.  I think he‘s said he‘s been in rehab seven times now.

LUDWIG:  Well, with a program like that, it sounds better than the hotel I‘m staying in.  Listen, if they‘re going into a place and they‘re not getting treatment, then they‘re not doing themselves any favor.  They‘re really destroying themselves. 

But if they go into a place that understands the pressures of celebrity and how there‘s a flirtation with really destroying one‘s self in the public eye, that might be the right place for them, a place that deals with wealthy celebrities who can help them deal with the limelight and the pressures that that offers.  I think a lot of people feel that, if you are a celebrity, then you have no pressures.  And in some cases, you have more temptations. 

(CROSSTALK)

ADUBATO:  On our way out here, I just want to say this.

SCARBOROUGH:  Finally, yes.

ADUBATO:  I just don‘t want to see Congressman Foley do a disservice to all of those people in America who really need rehab.  If he needs, get it, but not as a P.R. move.  It‘s highly cynical.

SCARBOROUGH:  And the thing is, we‘ve all known, I‘m sure—I know I have—a lot of my musician friends who have been into rehab before, and they needed it, definitely. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  And it helped them out, but there are some celebrities and politicians that seem to be very cynical.  Hey, thanks, Steve. 

ADUBATO:  Thank you, Joe.  Good to see you.

SCARBOROUGH:  As always, greatly appreciate it.  And thank you, Robi, so much.  We appreciate you coming back. 

LUDWIG:  Thank you.

SCARBOROUGH:  It‘s great talking to you when it doesn‘t have anything to do with Nancy Grace. 

(LAUGHTER)

And coming up next, Rosie O‘Donnell shooting her mouth off again on her co-hosts and the Bill of Rights.  Is Rosie out of control?  We‘ll show you her greatest misses and hits and let you decide.

And later, say it ain‘t so.  Vaughnifer call it quits.  You thought they were engaged.  It‘s so hard to keep up in “Hollyweird.”  It‘s a shock, isn‘t it, buddy?

ADUBATO:  I‘m hurting, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  It‘s killing me right here. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) 

SCARBOROUGH:  Rosie‘s at it again, and this time she‘s using Monday‘s shooting at an Amish school as the excuse to take on the Second Amendment and her “View” co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck.  Take a look. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ELISABETH HASSELBECK, “VIEW” CO-HOST:  It‘s our constitutional right that we have to defend ourselves; 192,000 women each year use a gun to defend themselves against sexual offenders... 

ROSIE O‘DONNELL, HOST, “THE VIEW”:  But let me just say this...

HASSELBECK:  ... and people who are trying to rape them.

O‘DONNELL:  In our country, Elisabeth...

HASSELBECK:  You can‘t just take away your right to bear arms.

O‘DONNELL:  Well, it‘s not really a right.  There‘s up to this debate as to whether... 

HASSELBECK:  It is a right; it‘s in our Constitution, the Second Amendment.

O‘DONNELL:  Well, let‘s talk instead of yell.

HASSELBECK:  I‘m not yelling. 

O‘DONNELL:  That sounded a little yelly.

BARBARA WALTERS, HOST, “THE VIEW”:  No, she wasn‘t yelling. 

(CROSSTALK)

HASSELBECK:  I have a question.  Why does everyone always think I‘m yelling?  Is it because I have a high voice?  Do I need to have, like, throat surgery?

JOY BEHAR, “THE VIEW”:  It‘s the speed.  It‘s the speed that you speak at.  That‘s what it is.  You talk fast.  That‘s all.

HASSELBECK:  I can‘t help that.  My whole family talks fast.  It‘s just how we do it. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  I‘m going home.  I‘ll see you later.

OK, anyway, I will—let‘s bring in right now—I mean, because this

I just don‘t believe this can help “The View.”  Let‘s bring in Katrina Szish.  She‘s from “Us Weekly.”  And Tom O‘Neil, he‘s from “InTouch Weekly.” 

I just got to ask:  Why the hell, Tom, are they debating the Second Amendment on “The View”? 

TOM O‘NEIL, “INTOUCH WEEKLY”:  Yes, this is supposed to be the ultimate girly chitchat show, and they‘re going places.

SCARBOROUGH:  Why?

O‘NEIL:  And they‘re screwing it up. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  I miss Star Jones.  I miss Star Jones.  Bring her back. 

I miss the weddings. 

O‘NEIL:  I think that, during commercial break, that that‘s what Barbara Walters is doing backstage, resisting the urge...

SCARBOROUGH:  Calling Star Jones?

O‘NEIL:  ... to call Starr on her cell phone. 

SCARBOROUGH:  I mean, this can‘t be working.  Rosie O‘Donnell is taking on Christians, attacking them, she‘s attacking Catholics.  She‘s now going after the Second Amendment.  Take a look.  This is her greatest hits.  Roll it. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

O‘DONNELL:  ... able to get the presidential seal on paper towels, but we still haven‘t clean up New Orleans. 

(LAUGHTER)

So I don‘t know how that happened. 

We were attacked, not by a nation, and as a result of the attack and the killing of nearly 3,000 innocent people, we invaded two countries and killed innocent people in those countries. 

HASSELBECK:  But do you understand that the belief funding those attacks, OK, that is widespread?  And if you take radical Islam and you want to talk about what‘s going on there, you have to...

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  And just one second.  Radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam, in a country like America.

(APPLAUSE)

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  ... a lot there in the tub.  Because Vivi (ph) always looks at me and says, “When am I getting my fur?” 

Everyone can be a tiny bit gay.  Do you think people are either 100 percent gay or 100 percent not? 

HASSELBECK:  Pretty much. 

O‘DONNELL:  You do?

HASSELBECK:  Well, yes.

O‘DONNELL:  ... you get a friend who‘s just had a baby, the dog that‘s had babies.  You bring your baby over with the puppies.  You let the baby naked, and the dog will lick the baby‘s heinie.  This is what a doctor told me, because there‘s antiseptic in the dog‘s tongue, and the diaper rash will go away. 

First of all, it‘s pink, which I think is odd for a drink to begin with.

HASSELBECK:  First of all, it‘s nasty.

(APPLAUSE)

(LAUGHTER)

O‘DONNELL:  It was a joke, and it went up my nose.  It was a total joke, and it‘s in my—my eyes are tearing. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  I don‘t watch her during the day.  I don‘t want to watch her at night on my show.  But, I mean, the whole idea is just sort of shake it up, create controversy?  I mean, that can‘t last forever, can it? 

KATRINA SZISH, “US WEEKLY”:  I think you‘re right.  I think Rosie‘s presence there certainly reinvigorates the show.  It gives it a much needed kick in the old butt, as you would say.

But, you know, she has given the show more energy.  A lot more people are watching it.  I don‘t advocate her politics.  I don‘t agree with her means of getting those viewers, but right now she‘s raising the ratings.  And that‘s what she‘s supposed to do.  Whether it will last remains to be seen.  At least for now, she‘s getting that show out there again.

O‘NEIL:  Sixty percent the ratings have jumped since Rosie.  Sixty percent!

SCARBOROUGH:  And why is that?  Do people like controversy?  I mean, this is like “Crossfire” in the morning, with two people that don‘t know the issues. 

O‘NEIL:  Right, right.  And it‘s combat TV. 

SZISH:  That‘s true.

O‘NEIL:  And I think that Barbara puts up with it, too, because she agrees with most of the premises, being a liberal, that Rosie does. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Right.  She agrees with Rosie, and so she lets her go off and say things that she doesn‘t want to say herself, right?

O‘NEIL:  Right.  But this is no longer “The View.”  This is the Rosie O‘Donnell show.  And for somebody who‘s against guns, she acts like a bazooka.  She just blasts everyone away. 

SCARBOROUGH:  But how long will Barbara Walters put up with her overshadowing her? 

SZISH:  I think as long as the ratings stay up.  I think, right now, as long as this show stays out there, as long as it does well, Barbara is not going to lose out.  And I think she‘s fine to give the reins over to Rosie as long as the show is doing well.

SCARBOROUGH:  Do you agree with that, that as long as the ratings are up, she‘s fine, but the second they come down, you think she‘ll be turned on quickly?

SZISH:  She‘ll be the obvious target as to why people are stopping watching, because she will have offended people.  And then it‘s easier to turn the other way.  But right now, she‘s getting people excited.  She‘s getting them to watch.  She‘s the wildcard.  Anything can happen on live TV, and she makes it good TV. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Doesn‘t she have a long history of starting fast and then exploding? 

O‘NEIL:  Oh, yes.  Oh, yes, yes, yes.

SCARBOROUGH:  Like what are some examples?

O‘NEIL:  Well, her numbers really dropped dramatically during those days when she was still the queen of nice with her own talk show.  It went off the air not because she wanted to, but because the numbers were plunging. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And same thing—she had a magazine, too, right?

O‘NEIL:  I was a contributor to this magazine.  Ah, the stories I could tell you. 

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  She was pretty hard to deal with? 

O‘NEIL:  She was impossible to deal with. 

SCARBOROUGH:  So you...

O‘NEIL:  She was abusive to the staff.  She was rarely in the office.  She would send really insulting e-mails to everybody else.  She was really a beast. 

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  She was a beast?

O‘NEIL:  She was. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Anything can happen on live TV?

O‘NEIL:  And I admire her on many levels, I really do.  And I think that what‘s good about “The View” now is that she‘s giving it a brain, but she is dominating this show too much.  And this is the problem she had with the magazine, the rest of it.  She is just a personality out of control. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You admired her, but she was a beast.  Thank you, Tom. 

It‘s great to have you here in person.  Thank you so much, Katrina.

“Hollyweird” is coming up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, rev up the Porsche.  It‘s time to take a drive through “Hollyweird.”

First up, did they or didn‘t they break up?  Well, sources are split on whether Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn have called it quits.  Here to help us figure it out, Jill Dobson from “Star” magazine and Michelle Lee of “InTouch.”

Michelle, let‘s start with you.  Are they or aren‘t they together? 

MICHELLE LEE, “INTOUCH” MAGAZINE:  You know, there are all these rumors that Jen and Vince have split up.  They‘ve been around for months.  What we‘ve been hearing, though, is that they are having problems, but they haven‘t actually split up.  Vince is in London right now filming.  Jen is back at home.  They‘re kind of figuring things out.  Does anybody care?

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s the question.  I thought they were engaged. 

Weren‘t they engaged for a little bit?

JILL DOBSON, “STAR” MAGAZINE:  There were reports that they were engaged, and then Jennifer... 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You don‘t care about these two, do you? 

DOBSON:  I don‘t care about these. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Why don‘t you care?

DOBSON:  I‘m much more interested—Eva Longoria and Tony Parker have split, and that‘s the one I care about. 

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s a biggie, isn‘t it?

DOBSON:  They were so lovey-dovey, and they invited us all into the relationship.  Jen and Vince have been like, “You know what?  Stay away.  Leave us alone.”

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You know who else was angry last night was Paris Hilton.  It seems she got in a big fight with Shanna Moakler, who is of “Dancing with the Stars” fame.  What happened?

LEE:  Yes, yes.  Well, Shanna is actually Travis Barker‘s ex.  And apparently Paris hooked up with Travis, so they‘ve been having this feud for a really long time. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And he was drummer for Blink-182, right? 

LEE:  He was.  And if you‘ve seen this guy, he‘s nothing to write home about, not usually somebody who like these hot two women would really be fighting over, so these two have been having, like, a war of the words for quite a while, and then now...

(CROSSTALK)  

SCARBOROUGH:  And last night—I mean, it was an ugly fight, wasn‘t it?

LEE:  It became really ugly.  Paris was saying that Shanna punched her in the jaw.  I mean, she basically did what a lot of people have been, like, wishing that they could do to Paris Hilton.  Shanna was saying that Paris‘ ex pushed her down a flight of stairs and that he threw a drink on her.

SCARBOROUGH:  That is awesome.

LEE:  I mean, it got really bad. 

SCARBOROUGH:  This is...

LEE:  They each filed a police report.

SCARBOROUGH:  Did they really?  I was going to ask if they filed police reports.  Who won?  Did you hear?  We‘re hoping that Paris got the worst of it. 

DOBSON:  You know, Paris looks the worst for wear.  She looks a little bruised up. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Does she really? 

LEE:  Paris is really good at acting like she‘s hurt.  There were all these pictures that came out of her where she‘s holding her jaw like this.

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh, poor thing. 

LEE:  There were really no visible bruises though. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Didn‘t look Muhammad Ali after the fight in Madison Square Garden.

Now let‘s talk about dirty celebrities, one of my favorite topics.  A detergent company asked people to pick the celebrities who were the dirtiest and the cleanest in “Hollyweird.”  And the winner, Jill?  Who did they think are the dirtiest celebrities?

DOBSON:  Britney and K-Fed. 

SCARBOROUGH:  They look kind of dirty. 

DOBSON:  They were voted the dirtiest.  I mean, I feel a little bit bad for Britney.  But, you know, after that “Dateline” interview, she looked like she couldn‘t even put herself together, much less a household, so I imagine that‘s where the public got that perception from.  On the other hand, Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick were voted the cleanest couple in America.

SCARBOROUGH:  What‘s it mean?  What‘s America—so Britney Spears, again, I mean, this can‘t be good for record sales. 

DOBSON:  It‘s not good.  I mean, you can just imagine Britney and K-Fed, tons of wife-beaters and Cheetos wrappers all over their house.  I mean, it‘s not looking good for Britney‘s reputation.  But at the same time, if Britney can come out having had her second baby, have an amazing record, a great video, I think all will be forgiven.

SCARBOROUGH:  And take a shower.  I mean, the Cheetos and the wife-beater t-shirt.  It sounds like my double-wide trailer that I live in.

DOBSON:  To me, it‘s walking barefoot into public gas stations and bathrooms and being photographed doing that...

(CROSSTALK)  

SCARBOROUGH:  You know what?  Come on.  You know what?  And I‘ll let he who is without sin cast the first stone.  I can‘t do that. 

Let‘s talk about—speaking of big hits—the Hoff.  Will you give us an update?  Tell us where he the Hoff is in Europe right now on the charts. 

DOBSON:  On the U.K. charts, the Hoff is at number 13.  And we‘re predicting top 10 by the end of the week, so... 

SCARBOROUGH:  Number 13 with a bullet, right?  SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY obviously pushing up the charts in the U.K.?

DOBSON:  We can do it in the U.S., too.

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s right.  All right.  Thank you so much, Michelle Lee, greatly appreciate it.  Thank you, Jill Dobson, as always.  And thank you for being with us tonight.  That‘s all the time we have.  But “LOCKUP:

INSIDE STATEVILLE” starts right now.  We‘ll see you tomorrow night in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

END   

Copy: Content and programming copyright 2006 MSNBC.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.  Transcription Copyright 2006 Voxant, Inc. ALL RIGHTS  RESERVED. No license is granted to the user of this material other than for research. User may not reproduce or redistribute the material except for user‘s personal or internal use and, in such case, only one copy may be printed, nor shall user use any material for commercial purposes or in any fashion that may infringe upon MSNBC and Voxant, Inc.‘s copyright or other proprietary rights or interests in the material. This is not a legal transcript for purposes of litigation.

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