updated 10/19/2006 12:08:24 PM ET 2006-10-19T16:08:24

Guests: Joe Scarborough, David Kuo, Leslie Sanchez, Andy Borowitz, Sigifred Gonzalez

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST:  Welcome to the show.  I‘m Tucker Carlson.

We‘ve got a lot to get to today, including the author of the bombshell book that claims Evangelical Christians have been cynically used by the Bush administration.  And why a former White House official says it doesn‘t matter who controls Congress, nothing will change after midterm elections anyway.

But first, our top story, the scandal that just won‘t die, former congressman Mark Foley and his X-rated e-mails to underage congressional pages.  The House Ethics Committee continues to meet behind closed doors while the FBI investigates allegations against Foley.  Meanwhile, Foley‘s attorney told reporters yesterday his client will reveal the name of the priest he says abused him as a young man.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GERALD RICHMAN, MARK FOLEY‘S ATTORNEY:  Mark Foley is intending to work with the Archdiocese of Miami and Greater West Palm Beach for the purpose of revealing the name of the particular priest who was involved so that the archdiocese can then deal appropriately with the issue.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  Joining me now to talk about this scandal and how it‘s affecting the Republican Party, MSNBC‘s own Joe Scarborough, of course our friend and a former congressman.

Joe, thanks a lot for coming on. 

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST, “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY”:  Hey.  No problem.  Thanks, Tucker.

CARLSON:  What a BS artist is, this Mark Foley guy.  I mean, now, you know, essentially blaming his behavior on this molestation almost 40 years ago.  Now he‘s not going to tell us the name of the man who supposedly abused him.  I don‘t understand what the point of this all is, this protracted story that he‘s telling about his own abuse.  Do you? 

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, I mean, obviously, it‘s we live in the age of Oprah.  And so when you get in trouble, you try to blame somebody else.  And if that doesn‘t work, you try to blame alcohol or drug addiction, and that‘s obviously what Mark and his lawyers and his political team decided from the very first hours.

Remember, Tucker, as soon as this broke we heard immediately that Mark had alcohol problems.

CARLSON:  Right.

SCARBOROUGH:  And I‘ve been friends with Mark since 1994.  I‘ve hung out with him in social settings.  And a lot of social settings, both in Washington and back in his district, and I can tell you that he had the reputation of nursing a drink all night.

And so I think the same goes with these child molestation charges.  We don‘t know what‘s going to come out.  But certainly at this point the burden would be on Mark to prove that he is not just spinning this case wildly and trying to blame other people for his problems. 

CARLSON:  Doesn‘t—you—I think you put your finger right on it when you said we live in the age of Oprah.  Does it seem like every year the differences between Republicans and Democrats kind of erode, disappear?  I mean, is it odd to you that a Republican, a supposedly kind of conservative Republican, is doing the Oprah routine? 

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, no.  I mean, not at all.

Again, you get in trouble, you point fingers, you blame somebody else, you blame your parents, you blame—of course now very fashionable to blame priests.  And so, no.  I mean, you‘re right, the difference between Republicans and Democrats continues to melt away, even in the way that we handle political scandals, and it‘s most unfortunate and it‘s going to have a really corrosive effect on the Republican Party not only in the state of Florida, but I predict across the country. 

A lot of people like to say, oh, the Foley scandal is not going to have a great impact.  That‘s just not the case at all.

I ran in 1994, and I can tell you, I would have loved to run against Bill Clinton‘s hollowing out of the military or the biggest tax cut ever, or Hillary health care, but time and time again the biggest applause lines came when I attacked Dan Rostenkowski and the House banking scandal, Jim Wright...

CARLSON:  Right.

SCARBOROUGH:  All of those Democratic scandals sold, so I kept going back to them time and time again.  That‘s what Democrats are going to do these past—these next three weeks.

Bill Clinton is talking about a campaign based on common good.  What the hell is that?  Common good?

CARLSON:  I couldn‘t agree—common good?

SCARBOROUGH:  What is this?  Is this like a Marxist commune? 

CARLSON:  Exactly.  It‘s also...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  No.  You go after the other guy‘s jugular and you say they had a sex scandal under their own roof and they tried to cover it up...

CARLSON:  That‘s right.

SCARBOROUGH:  ... because they were more interested in protecting their places and seats of power than they were protecting young children. 

CARLSON:  Of course.

SCARBOROUGH:  That will sell more than common good.  And Mark Foley spinning it this way in some pathetic Oprah-style confessional just—it‘s just not going to help him, it‘s not going to help the party. 

CARLSON:  I told—plus—and then he is protecting the supposed abuser by not giving his name out.  It actually drives me crazy.

But there is another...

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, you know, hold on.  Maybe it‘s like Gerry Studds.  I mean, maybe it was a consensual relationship.

Democrats hate talking about the Gerry Studds scandal—who just passed away this past weekend and was practically lionized by “The New York Times” -- because he sodomized a 17-year-old page not only in his Georgetown apartment, but also in Portugal.  But they said it was—it was a consensual relationship, as if you can have a consensual relationship with a 17-year-old boy when you‘re a 40-something congressman.

It‘s just pathetic, and Republicans, as well as Democrats, are now going to be on the firing line because of it.

CARLSON:  Yes, the standards always change.  I mean, I remember back when sexual harassment was a crime.  That was before the Clinton administration, of course.

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes, isn‘t it funny that...

CARLSON:  Yes—no.

SCARBOROUGH:  I wonder when Clarence Thomas does if he‘ll get the type of write-up that Gerry Studds gets, despite the fact that Gerry Studds sodomized a 17-year-old page and Clarence Thomas was lied about by Anita Hill, who still wanted a job with him after the so-called Coke can incident.

CARLSON:  No, Long Dong Silver will be in the first paragraph of that obit.

SCARBOROUGH:  Of course.

CARLSON:  Well, the second big political story of the day, the looming midterm elections.  For weeks, election watchers have been protecting Democrats will take control of the House, possibly even the Senate.  Well, so what?  That‘s the question asked today in an op-ed in “The New York Times” by former Reagan and Bush 41 aide Bruce Bartlett.

Bartlett writes this: “As a Republican, I‘ve got a message for those fearful of Democratic control: don‘t worry.  Nothing dreadful is going to happen.  Liberals have much less to gain than they believe.”

“There is really no reason for conservatives, businessmen or investors to worry particularly about a Democratic victory in November.  Congress will be on automatic pilot for the next two years regardless of which party is in control.”

So is he right, Joe?  It‘s an interesting question.  Is that too cynical? 

Do you think that‘s true? 

SCARBOROUGH:  If—he is right legislatively.  There‘s nothing that Nancy Pelosi‘s House could ever pass that‘s going to pass through a Republican Senate and get signed by George Bush.  And George Bush may actually do something radical.  He may actually use his veto pen over the next two years.  We may actually see some responsible government spending for the first time since he got sworn into office. 

The bigger problem for Republicans is this: If you allow Henry Waxman to take control of the Government Reform and Oversight Committee—or the Government Oversight Committee, whatever they‘re calling it now—he will be launching investigations left and right of George W. Bush.  If you allow Barney Frank to take over Judiciary, along with John Conyers, they will be launching investigations of George Bush left and right.

And you don‘t have to talk to Bob Woodward to learn that the Bush administration really fouled up this Iraq war in the planning and the execution of it.  You can talk to Republicans who will tell you he fouled it up. 

And so, the problem for Bush is, because he‘s got a press that‘s going to want to write these stories and go after it, you‘re going to have unprecedented news coverage of these scandal hearings in the House of Representatives over the next two years, and that‘s going to be damaging not only to the Bush White House, but also to people like John McCain, who supported this war.  However, McCain has a little bit of insulation because he‘s been criticizing Bush throughout the post-war reconstruction phase also.

But, no, it‘s a lot of bad headlines, and that‘s because, of course, media tilts to the left. 

CARLSON:  But it‘s interesting, though.  You describe a scenario in which this—President Bush would actually be more active in his relations with Congress than he has been.  Let‘s say the Democrats take the House...

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh, sure. 

CARLSON:  ... let‘s say they take both.  All of a sudden, Bush will be the stop gap.  He‘ll be the brick wall between their desires and, you know, law. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Or George Bush will finally start acting like a conservative president and start vetoing runaway legislation instead of being part of a club where everybody passes everybody‘s bill, where he slaps Ted Stephens on the back and says, “Hey, you‘re a good guy, Ted,” while he signs, you know, a bill that allows Congress to build a bridge to nowhere in Alaska. 

I mean—I mean, the waste, fraud and abuse under this administration has been at unprecedented levels when it comes to spending simply because a Republican president won‘t veto bad Republican bills. 

CARLSON:  Amen.

SCARBOROUGH:  If you have a Democratic House, then he will veto those bills.  There will be more some responsible spending.

So that‘s the good news for conservatives.  The bad news for conservatives is you‘re going to see unprecedented investigations launched the last two years...

CARLSON:  Yes.

SCARBOROUGH:  And it‘s certainly going to hurt the Bush administration and Republican candidates in 2008. 

CARLSON:  And there will be a lot of gloating by Nancy Pelosi. 

Joe Scarborough, that was really smart analysis.  Thank you.

SCARBOROUGH:  Thank you.  I appreciate it, Tucker. 

CARLSON:  Want to go now to NBC‘s Pete Williams, who‘s standing by with breaking news—Pete. 

PETE WILLIAMS, NBC CORRESPONDENT:  Well, Tucker, this may be much ado about not much, but the Department of Homeland Security, we now learned, has notified the National Football League and seven cities in which NFL stadiums are located that an Internet Web site had posted about a week ago a threat to seven NFL stadiums, saying that some kind of device, possibly even a radiological dirty bomb, was going to be set off this weekend or soon at those stadiums. 

And the ones that were mentioned on this Web site were New York, Miami, Atlanta, Houston, Cleveland, Oakland and Seattle.  And so they say out of an abundance of caution, the Homeland Security Department has told the NFL and has told those seven cities.

But the Homeland Security Department says it doesn‘t think this is a credible thereat, and other federal law enforcement agencies agree that this is not a credible threat.  They note that security has been increased at NFL stadiums now for—ever since 9/11, basically.

Many cities increased their security.  FBI joint terrorism task forces now, as a matter of routine, attend all the NFL football games.  They show up to the stadiums. 

The NFL has just put this statement out.  Let me quote it to you. 

“The Department of Homeland Security has judged that the threat is not credible.  Our stadiums are very well protected through the comprehensive security procedures we have in place, including security facility perimeters, pat-downs and bag searches.”

And you may remember that the NFL imposed these pat-downs and bag searches shortly after 9/11. 

So what you have here is a threat on an Internet site judged not to be credible by the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI, but, as is routine these days, as they always say, out of an abundance of caution, they‘ve told the NFL this, they‘ve told the cities, and the fact that they‘ve done that is starting to leak out this afternoon.  So that‘s what‘s happening here.

CARLSON:  Interesting.  Hard to know what to make of all that, but thanks a lot.

Pete Williams, I appreciate it. 

WILLIAMS:  OK.

CARLSON:  Still to come, the Democrats‘ campaigner in chief.  Six years out of office, Bill Clinton is still at the center of everything.  Is that good for his party?

And the White House versus the religious right.  Is the administration using evangelicals?  But does that make them any more powerful or less? 

That story when we come back. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back. 

Washington is buzzing over a new book that charges the White House with cynically playing politics.  Well, there‘s nothing new about that, of course.  Every White House does it.  But when you talk about the Bush administration playing the religious right, you get people‘s attention.

Here‘s a quote from the book.

“National Christian leaders received hugs and smiles in person and then were dismissed behind their backs and described as ‘ridiculous,‘ ‘out of control,‘ and just plain ‘goofy.‘  The leaders spent much time lauding the president, but they were never shrewd enough to do what Billy Graham had done three decades before, to wonder whether they were being used.  They were.”

My next guest is the author of that book, “Tempting Faith”. David Kuo is the former deputy director of President Bush‘s Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives.  He‘s also a former professional bass fisherman who joins us from New York. 

David, thanks for coming on.

DAVID KUO, AUTHOR, “TEMPTING FAITH”:  Hey, Tucker.  It‘s great to be here. 

And I‘m glad you got all that right. 

CARLSON:  I did.  Well, I must say, I was impressed by the bass fisherman part. 

KUO:  Thank you.

CARLSON:  I can‘t tell exactly—I read your book last night, and I can‘t tell exactly who is more at fault, the White House for being what all White Houses are, political, or evangelical leaders who put their faith in a—you know, a temporal system, in a man rather than in their religious beliefs. 

KUO:  Tucker, I thank you, because I think you‘ve got it exactly right.  One of the things that I actually say in the prologue of the book is, you know, that—that a White House would do something political isn‘t frankly all that shocking.  And by point in talking about it is to just say to Christians out there, hey, guess what, even in this White House, even though they‘ve tried to portray the president as a sort of pastor in chief, they still view you as a voting bloc. 

CARLSON:  Yes.

KUO:  So, just be wise, be shrewd, you know, and don‘t cast your pearls before politics. 

CARLSON:  But they have.  And I‘ve watched them do that from day one.  They really have put, you know, everything they have into George W. Bush.  I‘ve been offended by it for seven years now.  I don‘t understand why ordinarily shrewd people have let their defenses down to this extent with Bush.

KUO:  No, no.  And I don‘t either.  And frankly, that—Tucker, that—but part of it is, I do understand it, because I‘ve been there.

You know, having been involved in politics, trying to wrestle with this question of god and politics in my own life, as I‘ve done, you know, for 20 years or so, and as I try to recount through the journey of the book, is, I do understand it because there‘s a seduction to politics.  You know, in a way, doing politics is easy.  Trying to follow god can be really hard. 

And I think one of the things that politicians can do so well is to give this impression that, hey, if you follow me, if you fight my moral crusade, if you do that sort of thing, then, you know, you‘re fighting on the side of god.  And I‘m not saying that the moral things aren‘t important. 

You know, obviously I‘m for them.  I‘m a conservative.  But ultimately, the things of faith are more important. 

CARLSON:  Right.

KUO:  And that‘s what I tried to sort of get across in this book.  And again, this is, you know, as much my story.  I speak as someone who‘s known this, who‘s done this, and who‘s made the mistakes.  I‘ve been seduced by politics. 

CARLSON:  Well, you have got this kind of amazing scene in here.  Right after the last midterms, 2002 midterms, Republican sweep, really at the apogee of Republican influence, I would say, you know, in the past eight or nine years, maybe more, and you have conservatives coming and saying, you know, what about us? 

And Trent Lott drafts—drafts this legislation to outlaw partial-birth abortion.  Like, if you can‘t do that, what can you do, is kind of my view.  And as you describe it, the White House says to Lott and to evangelicals, well, slow down, let‘s not go too fast. 

Why? 

KUO:  Because, again, it‘s this perception thing.  Right?

Actually, you have to go back to early 1999 when—when Governor Bush was trying to run for president.  A very tactical decision is made at that point to present him as the Christian president, and to go out to evangelical leaders and to court their vote not by going out in public by talking about conservative values, talking about conservative issues, but by sharing his testimony, obviously a moving, powerful, wonderful testimony. 

But that very same thing has carried through the entire administration.  And evangelicals have been told to wait.  They‘ve been told to trust this president because he‘s one of them.

And again, is his faith real absolutely (ph)?  Of course it is.  But the point here is, again, it‘s just example after example of seducing the Christian voter. 

And—and you know—and I don‘t think I could see it or anyone could see it any more clearly than in the reaction just this past week to what I‘ve written.  The evangelicals have come out just almost, you know, knee-jerk and said, no, it can‘t possibly be true...

CARLSON:  Yes.

KUO:  ... when, you know, it‘s obviously true.  Everyone who has been involved in Republican politics knows that, you know, social conservatives are mocked all the time. 

CARLSON:  Of course they are.  Of course they are, because nobody who actually runs the party is an evangelical.  I mean, how many committed pro-lifers—how many people who actually are in charge—you know, the top 100 people in the Republican Party, how many—of that, how many would you say believe that abortion is deeply immoral?  A small minority, I would say. 

KUO:  Yes.  I mean, you look at someone like—like Rick Santorum, someone like Sam Brownback.  These are guys whose faith is so real, who wear it on their sleeve...

CARLSON:  Right.

KUO:  ... who are willing to stand up and say what they think no matter what. 

CARLSON:  Yes.  Amen.

KUO:  Now, that gets—that gets their butts handed to them, but, you know, even within the White House these guys are the ones who still have their eyes rolled at them, too...

CARLSON:  Exactly.

KUO:  ... because they can‘t be controlled.  They are the ones who tow the party line. 

CARLSON:  Exactly.  That‘s exactly right.  That‘s exactly right.

You know what?  I hope your book sells a lot.  I hope you win in the end, because you are telling the truth.  And you‘re telling it from a conservative Christian position.  So anybody tries to write you off as a liberal or anti-Christian ought to be ashamed of himself.

David Kuo, thanks for coming on.  I appreciate it.

KUO:  Tucker—I appreciate it, Tucker.

CARLSON:  Coming up, is Kim Jong-il double daring President Bush?  North Korea threatens more nuclear tests.  Is there anything the U.S. can do to stop them?

And talk show hosts gone wild.  It‘s Rosie versus O‘Reilly for real.  Who‘s going to win?  We‘ve got the tape. 

We‘ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Time now for “Beat the Press”.

You may like Bill O‘Reilly.  You may despise him.  But chances are close to 100 percent you have never felt sorry for him. 

Well, prepare for a brand-new emotion.  O‘Reilly went on “The View” recently.  There he bumped into Rosie O‘Donnell and here‘s what happened next. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL O‘REILLY, HOST, “THE O‘REILLY FACTOR”:  If the United States wins in Iraq...

ROSIE O‘DONNELL, CO-HOST, “THE VIEW”:  And how do we win there, Bill?  How do we win?

O‘REILLY:  OK.  By stabilizing the situation and having a democratic government. 

O‘DONNELL:  So when the Sunnis and the Shiites are fighting a civil war, can we win there when they‘re fighting? 

O‘REILLY:  I don‘t know.  I don‘t know.

O‘DONNELL:  Do you think we can?

O‘REILLY:  But if we can...

O‘DONNELL:  If.

O‘REILLY:  ... it‘s better for the world.

O‘DONNELL:  Would you send your child there to fight? 

O‘REILLY:  Would I send him?  If he volunteered—my nephew volunteered for the Army, and I am very proud of him.

O‘DONNELL:  Your child.  What if the draft is instituted?  Would you send your child? 

O‘REILLY:  My child and nephew and everybody else...

O‘DONNELL:  Would you send your child to fight in Iraq, yes or no?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  She is such a shrew.  It‘s just—it‘s horrible. 

Bill O‘Reilly all of a sudden looks like the one being bullied.  He looks like the reasonable one.  You want to say, Bill O‘Reilly, just talk.  The only time ever you want to hear more of Bill O‘Reilly. 

Amazing that she has that effect. 

Well, next, Rosie O‘Donnell yet again.  No, we couldn‘t control ourselves today.  But then, neither could Rosie, who in the middle of the show decided to demonstrate what a mammogram is. 

Take a look at this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

O‘DONNELL:  It doesn‘t really hurt, ladies.  Honestly.

If you right now—look, look, this is how much it hurts.  That‘s just what—and it‘s over.  OK?  That‘s it.  I just had a mammogram.

(CROSSTALK)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  OK.  OK.  Let‘s be honest now.  That‘s not medical advice. 

That‘s (INAUDIBLE).  That‘s self-love. 

That‘s taking yourself to second base.  And that‘s doing it live on television.  It‘s also repellant. 

And finally, a nod to ABC‘s Diane Sawyer, who made her way into perhaps the most sealed-off country in the world, North Korea.  Watch how she describes how she got there. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DIANE SAWYER, ABC NEWS (voice over):  Open a magazine on board and it tells of atrocities it says Americans committed during the Korean War. 

We get off the plane, just a handful of foreigners—in fact, there are only about 300 foreigners in this country of 23 million.  We, too, are considered “Yankees,” a Chinese word that means ocean demons. 

Our cell phones are confiscated.  So are Blackberrys.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  What a great voice she has.  The truth is, Diane Sawyer doesn‘t need to go to North Korea or anywhere else.  She can stay home in her studio and let Brad Pitt come to her.

But she went anyway, because she‘s still interested in the rest of the world.  She still gets out of New York once in a while.

Good for her.  Good for Diane Sawyer.  Pretty impressive, I think.

Still to come, the Democrats go back to the future.  But with Bill Clinton as the party‘s star, is that strategy likely to help or hurt? 

And the White House reaches out to right wing radio hosts.  Can it win them over in time to turn the midterms around? 

That story when we come back. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Still to come, the Texas sheriff who is fighting a losing battle against drug smugglers along our border with Mexico.  And why critics of Madonna‘s adoption of an African boy should just shut up.  We‘ll get to all of that in just a minute, but right now here‘s a look at your headlines. 

MARGARET BRENNAN, CNBC ANCHOR:  I‘m Margaret Brennan with your CNBC market wrap.  The Dow crossing the 12,000 mark but settling just below that at yet another record high, the Dow up 42 points to close today at 11,992.68.   The S&P 500 up just short of two points.  The NASDAQ down just short of eight points.  EBay, the online market place, just now releasing third quarter earnings, beating Wall Street expectations reporting revenues of $1.5 billion, versus the Wall Street estimate of 1.4 billion.  That‘s a 26 cent per share gain.  Now the outlook on the next quarter, that company estimating that revenues would be in the $1.6 to $1.7 billion range.  That stock in after hours session now trading down about 25 cents.  Crude oil hitting fresh lows, down two percent today on word of rising supply that could offset OPEC‘s planned production cut.  In New York, oil sessions slipping $1.28 to $57.65 a barrel.  Meantime, consumer prices posting an unexpectedly sharp increase in September for inflation, now looks not as bad as some thought and there‘s now the expectation the Federal Reserve may not raise interest rates when they meet next week.  And a bright spot in housing, new home construction up 6 percent after declining for three months in a row.  Now back to Tucker.  

CARLSON:  Time now for three-on-three where we welcome two of the sharpest people we know to discuss three of today‘s most interesting stories.  Joining us from San Francisco, Andy Borowitz, author of the “Republican Playbook” which I Just read, it‘s a riot. And from Washington, Republican Strategist Leslie Sanchez.  Welcome to you both. 

LESLIE SANCHEZ:  How are you doing? 

CARLSON:  Former President Bill Clinton has been busy campaigning for Democrats around the country in advance of next month‘s midterm elections.  Today he spoke, he was very late, by the way, showing up at Georgetown University where he struck a harshly partisan tone.  Here‘s part of what he said.  

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL CLINTON:  This is the first time when on a consistent basis the most conservative most ideological wing of the Republican Party has had both the executive and the legislative branch, with a very distinct governing philosophy and a very distinct political philosophy.

(END OF VIDEO CLIP) 

CARLSON:  Andy, I know that Clinton is popular, much more popular than he was when he was president.  But I wonder though if it helps to have him still as the functioning leader of the party.  Is that good for Democrats, it‘s been a long time. 

ANDY BOROWITZ, AUTHOR, “THE REPUBLICAN HANDBOOK”:  Well I think it‘s a good thing because you have to keep in mind Tucker the Democrats don‘t have a very deep bench.  I mean, who are you going to bring out there, Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis?  I think you have to go with the C man, you have to go with the C man.

CARLSON:  Whatever happened to Michael Dukakis, I‘m glad you brought up that name, I haven‘t heard it in about a decade.  Where is he?

BOROWITZ:  I‘m trying to start sort of engineering his comeback today on your show, actually.

[laughter]

CARLSON:  If you can pull that off, I‘ll be impressed. 

SANCHEZ:  That‘s a good one.  

CARLSON:  Leslie, Republicans don‘t like this guy but Democrats of course do, intensely.  Is he the political genius he gets credit for being?

SANCHEZ:  I don‘t know about that, Tucker, but I think it‘s a lot of fun to watch and listen if not frightening to Bill Clinton and his wife Hillary Clinton, who says we want to take things away from you for the common good.  I don‘t know about you, but I remember what the Democratic idea of the common good is.  Things like studies on cow flatulence and how they affect global warming or maybe those multimillion dollars that they spent on toilet seats at the Pentagon and all that government waste.  It‘s the idea that Democrats want to use our own taxpayer money for their benefit and we have no say in how they do it.  I don‘t think that‘s exactly what Americans are looking for, but it‘s great to see them out on the campaign.  It does nothing but mobilize Republicans. 

CARLSON:  You know it maybe—we‘ll find out soon whether it‘s what America is looking for.  I wonder though if Clinton, I mean he is the former president, he‘s two term president, kind of a big deal, not many people can say that.  And I wonder if he diminishes himself and his stature a bit by being as partisan as he is, Leslie, have you noticed that?

SANCHEZ:  I don‘t think you can take anything away from that.  You have to look at the fact he‘s one of the top fundraisers for the Democrats.  They certainly do not pull out Howard Dean, I don‘t even know if he‘s still around anymore, basically putting him to the side.  But it does a lot I would say on the right in mobilizing the Republican base and understanding what these Democrats are really looking for.  It does a very strong contrast being Republican and Democratic ideas.

CARLSON:  Andy, shouldn‘t you be playing golf if you‘re the former president and not campaigning or should you be? 

BOROWITZ:  Well, I think you should be campaigning.  I‘ll tell you, this is a really great thing for Hillary, and the reason I say that is because as long as Bill is out there in public making appearances, she can keep track of where he is.  And I think that‘s a great thing. 

CARLSON:  That‘s actually an interesting question.  I know you‘re sort of joking but you may be sort of serious because that will be an issue when she runs for president.  I mean at some point people are going to want to know more about their marriage, and is that a problem? Or are we just so post modern at this point we don‘t care? 

BOROWITZ:  Well, she is definitely running because I just read a new poll that said 50 percent of Democrats want her to run and 100 percent of Republicans do.  So, she‘s definitely in there.  She‘s going.  

SANCHEZ:  There you go.

CARLSON:  Well President Bush recently held a closed door meeting with a group of conservative radio hosts including Shawn Hannity, Laura Ingram and Michael Nedved. The meeting which was not on the president‘s public schedule was an apparent and obvious attempt to shore up flagging support among conservatives.  Now, I‘m wondering Leslie, if you‘ve got to work to win over Shawn Hannity, and no offense to Shawn Hannity, nothing wrong with Shawn Hannity, of course.  But if you have to win him over and you‘re a Republican, two weeks before an election, I mean, it‘s kind of over for you, isn‘t it?

SANCHEZ:  Not at all.  You know the interesting thing about it is about right about this time is when voters are making up their mind who they‘re going to vote for and now it‘s a measure of intensity.  Who is going to get their base out and there‘s nothing wrong, in fact, it‘s politically brilliant be bringing in the folks who are really connected to the Republican base and the conservative base. 

CARLSON:  But shouldn‘t they already have those, I mean, shouldn‘t Shawn Hannity be sort of a given?  It‘s like, of course, we don‘t need to sell it to Shawn Hannity, he‘s already sold.  Shouldn‘t that be the assumption? 

SANCHEZ:  It‘s not a given so much as it is measuring and increasing intensity, because at the end game, as you know Tucker, it‘s going to be who turns out to vote.  Can you get the Republicans to come out and vote, the evangelicals and the social conservatives who‘ve been upset by some of the Foley things.  Are we going to be able to mobilize the base, that‘s the bigger issue and I‘d say not only with the money in the bank but also the strong ground games the Republicans have, I think we‘re going to be able to do so.  

CARLSON:  Andy, since you were the author of the “Republican Playbook,” and you know the answers to questions like these, how disenfranchised is the core Republican base at this point do you think?

BOROWITZ:  I think it‘s a little disenfranchised.  I guess my sense of this is based on what George Bush has been saying to these talk radio hosts at the White House.  He‘s trying to bring out stories that are appealing to the base and he‘s mainly been talking about Barney the terrier, and that to me is a sign that the White House has jumped the shark, really.  Because when you have to introduce a cute dog it‘s like scrappy doo, you know on Scooby Doo.  I think it‘s a danger sign.

CARLSON:  Apparently during the meeting, the hour and a half long meeting the dog Barney started scratching at the door and Bush let him in.  It is moments like that though, I‘m always amazed by how easily people are won over by the president, it doesn‘t matter who the president is, I mean any president, just the president of the United States. When you‘re in his presence wins you over and the fact that you can see his dog and have the illusion any of this intimate moment with him, I think—there are very few people who are resistant to that charm, don‘t you think Leslie?  

SANCHEZ:  Well, look, Barney has his own cam, don‘t forget the Christmas decorations and he goes around and smells underneath the Christmas tree, we all love to watch that.  But the bigger issue is, I think the president was talking about what‘s important in this election and that is what are the Democrats going to do if they did get into power.  Are you going to see those $500 tax cut credits that you have for your children going into the common good as the Clintons and the Democrats like to see it.  Are you going to see a loss or an increase of $1,000 if you‘re married in your tax bill if you‘re a married couple?  As much as we like political satires, those are the things that people are going to be thinking about when they go to the polls. 

BOROWITZ:  And we do like political satire by the way.  

SANCHEZ:  It‘s the golden age.  I‘ll tell you, it‘s the golden age of political satire, I admire it, I love that you love capitalism, go out there, sell that book, I‘m telling you.  And if Republicans and folks can keep their tax money they can spend it more on what they choose to do rather than what the government wants—

CARLSON:  What is the common good Andy?

BOROWITZ:  I‘m not just a satirist, I‘m also a professional bass fisher and I wanted to bring that out.

CARLSON:  Actually, I must say I was won over by that.  If you could define the common good in one sentence, Andy, what would it be?

BOROWITZ:  The common good?

CARLSON:  Yes.

BOROWITZ:  Gosh, that‘s a tough thing.  I would say every home should have a cute terrier.  That‘s what I would say. 

CARLSON:  Hey, I‘m kind of on your side.  The satellite imagery over North Korea, a country where dog is I believe the national dish, no kidding, shows increased activity around at least two possible nuclear test sites.  Further indication that the regime of Kim Jong Il may be preparing additional nuclear tests.  These reports coincide with efforts by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to get commitments from China and North Korea‘s other trading partners to control shipments to and from that country.  Meanwhile, North Korea has held huge rallies recently for claiming U.N.  sanctions a declaration of war.  Leslie, the obvious question is, what are we really going to do if North Korea has more tests?  What are we going to do if North Korea sets off a bomb say near Japan? What are we going to do if North Korea passes nuclear materials to al Qaeda?  What are we really going to do?

SANCHEZ:  That‘s a perfect storm I‘d say right now.  Not only do you have a cuckoo who has nuclear weapons but he‘s also somebody who‘s inclined to sell this technology to terrorists in Iran and all over the world, anybody who‘s willing to pay the price.  And when you put those two together, I think it‘s more important as much as we talk about political satire and everything else, to look at how dangerous and delicate this situation is.  Not only do we need a concise leadership on that, but we also need to avoid a divisive government and I think that‘s the biggest challenge for Republicans and Democrats this election cycle.  Is what does it ultimately mean?  I think the president -- 

CARLSON:  I mean but wait a second.  I mean it‘s pretty clear what it

means, I think.  I mean North Korea has been true to its word.  They said,

you know, we‘re going to do this and they did it.  We know that they‘re

capable of doing anything and that really is the most reckless country in

the world, and now it‘s a nuclear armed country and we have done, let‘s see

nothing!  We‘ve done nothing.  Should we—why have we taken military response off the table? 

SANCHEZ:  I wouldn‘t say, you know and I‘m certainly not a foreign affairs expert, let‘s start right there.  But let‘s look at the fact that there was successes in the U.N. Security Council in the unanimous vote that the United States pushed forward and the sanctions that they‘re trying to move within North Korea.  And it‘s something that‘s interesting, you don‘t hear much on the Democratic side with that but it is an important step.  And the other issue is, when they‘re talking about bilateral talks, we hear so much about that, the United States is moving forward with what they call the six-party talks, the idea of staying engaged in this.  But wherever we fall on this, it‘s an important significant issue as it relates to U.S.  vulnerability.  Not only to our—with respect to protecting our borders but also those terrorists who want to do harm against us. 

CARLSON:  What do you make of Kim Jong Il, Andy? 

BOROWITZ:  Well, I think he‘s a very dangerous man.  Anyone who would wear those sunglasses on a daily basis

CARLSON:  I agree with that. 

BOROWITZ:  Is bound to be a total wreck of things.

SANCHEZ:  And those colors Andy.

BOROWITZ:  He is taking such fashion risks already, I think we just have to assume he‘ll do anything.  But I think in terms of stopping him—

CARLSON:  But you‘re cut off from reality if you‘re wearing those. 

Yeah, how do we stop him?

BOROWITZ:  Exactly.  I think it‘s a mistake to send Condoleezza Rice, I don‘t think that gets it done.  I would send Rosie O‘Donnell.  I think that‘s the only person who can really intimidate him at this point.    

CARLSON:  He‘d certainly do anything to get her to stop talking I think you learned that today.  Thank you both very much, I appreciate it.  Leslie, again, thanks.  

SANCHEZ:  Thanks. 

CARLSON:  One embarrassing new report tells us who‘s really in charge on the border with Mexico.  We‘re tell you how the U.S. government is being out gunned and overrun by drug smugglers.  Plus, the father of the child adopted by Madonna gives his blessing to the adoption.  Wasn‘t it time for the so-called human rights activists who are protesting it to be quiet?  We‘ll discuss all of it when we come right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  A major western leader has the guts to tell the truth about Islam in the west.  Another example of how honesty gets you into trouble.  Plus, outgunned at our southern border.  Disturbing new details about how border patrol agents have shown up to a gunfight with knives.  We‘re back in 60 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  American Homeland Security Agents prepare for a Mexican standoff at our border.  

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  We found that the drug cartels are more violent than ever and more powerful than ever.  And they are the root causes for the violence on our border.  They represent the head of the snake, the head that must be eradicated.  

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  That‘s Texas Congressman Michael McCall declaring a border war against Mexican drug traffickers.  A new congressional report reveals the drug cartels outgun the good guys with automatic assault weapons, bazookas, grenade launchers, even IEDs.  The biggest fear of course is that the cartels might be forming an alliance with terrorists planning to smuggle weapons of mass destruction into our country.  In fact the report confirms that Hezbollah members have already entered the United States from Mexico.  How does the U.S. government allow itself to be outgunned by a bunch of drug runners?  One of the men demanding help in the fight is the Zapata County, Texas Sheriff, Sigifredo Gonzalez.  He‘s joins us from Uvalde, Texas.  Sheriff, thanks a lot for coming on, I appreciate that. 

Thanks for having us on. 

CARLSON:  Give us a quick overview of what it‘s like, how bad is it? 

GONZALEZ:  Well, there are many problems that have arisen on the border since about a year and a half, two years ago.  And these problems were trying to be addressed by us and the federal legislatures and we were not getting very much support from them.  Governor Perry came forward though and provided some funds for us and we have been able to do some operations along the river, the border with Mexico.  It would be a very, very successful operation, which have attributed to a reduction in crime on the border, deterrence on the border.  And again, it‘s something that our governor has done simply because the federal government has refused to do their part.  

CARLSON:  How can the federal government refuse?  It‘s an international border, the federal government is in charge of maintaining it.  What happens when you go to your congressman or your senators, what do they say? 

GONZALEZ:  Well, we have gone to our federal congressmen and we have told them about our situation on the border.  Of course they have promised to help but it kind of falls on deaf ears a lot of times and we were kind of tired of it, we formed a coalition and now we‘re being listened to, I hope.  I know that our governor has listened to us.

CARLSON:  How hard is it to get across the border from Mexico into Texas where you are? 

GONZALEZ:  Well, it‘s very simply.  We‘re in Uvalde right now.  But in Zapata where I‘m from, you can get on a boat and (INAUDIBLE) back and forth.  The United States to Mexico back and forth all day long and not get caught. The chances of apprehension are very, very slim.  

CARLSON:  So who are these people, the Mexican drug smugglers?  Is there any evidence that they are aligned with the Mexican government in any way?

GONZALEZ:  Well we have seen in (INAUDIBLE), in Hudspeth(ph) county I‘ve seen so many persons in the area of Zapata County, which are people we believe to be Mexican military and we feel they‘re very affiliated with the cartels operating in Mexico.  One thing we have to understand in Mexico, nobody smuggles anything across the river unless they first pay their quota or their plaza to the cartel members.  And that is something that is happening on a daily basis, and this is why we feel there is that connection between military cartels, human smugglers, drug smugglers and we feel potential terrorists. 

CARLSON:  Extra shocking.  So the Mexican government is in a league at least informally with these people and you are backed up by, let‘s see, nobody.  Your federal government is ignoring you.  Why isn‘t President Bush, the former Governor of your state, apprised of this, involved in it, helping make it better, have you ever wondered?  

GONZALEZ:  Well, we have tried to make contact with him on several occasions. Several of our congressmen from Texas have also asked that he meet with us and he has steadfastly refused to meet with us.  He knows, supposedly what our problems are, but it‘s just something he just refuses to meet with us.  We‘ve also made it known to Secretary Chertoff, same thing there.  They just refuse to meet with us.  I think to them it‘s more a problem with immigration than border security.  

CARLSON:  Well they don‘t want the border to be secure, obviously. 

Sheriff Gonzalez, I really appreciate your coming on.  Thank you. 

GONZALEZ:  Yes, sir, thank you.  

CARLSON:  Our good friend the Rev. Al Sharpton teams up with Chris Rock‘s family on a major lawsuit.  Who are they going after?  We‘ll tell you in a minute.  Before we go to break though, it‘s tonight‘s installment of the good, the bad, and the ugly.  British Prime Minister Tony Blair joins the ranks of the good for telling an obvious truth.  Blair said the other day he believes the veil some Muslim women wear is quote, “A mark of separation that makes some people outside the Muslim community uncomfortable.  The question whether the British are doing enough to integrate Muslims into their society has been a heated debate in England since last year‘s deadly suicide bombings in London.  Good for Tony Blair for telling the truth.

Well the bad athlete describes all those self-described human rights advocates who are attacking Madonna for adopting a child in the destitute African nation of Malawi.  Some are even demanding an investigation into whether strict adoption laws were ignored, because of Madonna‘s celebrity status.  But the boy‘s biological father has weighed in today.  He said, “Where were those critics when his son was living in poverty in an orphanage?”  Which is a great question.  They were no where to be seen, of course.  

And when it comes to celebrity divorces it rarely gets as ugly as this one.  The once happily married Heather Mills is now accusing her estranged husband rock icon Paul McCartney of abusing her.  Well they broke a wine bottle, among other things, as well as using drugs during their four year marriage.  McCartney strongly denies the accusations and vows to fight them in court.  At stake is the ex-Beatles‘ estate said to be worth more than $1 billion.   The lesson learned here, money can‘t buy you love or for that matter, a quickie divorce.  We‘ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back.  Here now, news you can actually use.  Here to bring it to us, the great Willie Geist.  Willie?

WILLIE GEIST:  Well, it depends on who you are, whether you can use this or not Tucker.  Yesterday this time we told you about Wesley Snipes, he owes about $12 million to the federal government in back taxes.  They can‘t track old Wesley down at the moment.  They‘re looking for him.   

CARLSON:  That‘s so great.  

GEIST:  You may not know about the story yet, except it‘s been on every TV channel, every website.

CARLSON:  Run Wesley, run.  That‘s what I think.

GEIST:  They‘re looking for good old Wes.  So if you see Wesley Snipes around, tell him the good folks at the federal government are looking for him.

CARLSON:  I‘m sorry, I‘m rooting for him, I really am, sorry to say that.

GEIST:  Well, Tucker, wherever there is injustice in the world and wherever there are television cameras, the Rev. Al Sharpton is there.  So when the mother of comedian Chris Rock alleged injustice at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in South Carolina, the Right Reverend was on the scene.  Sharpton joined Rose Rock today to announce his National Action Network will finance Mrs. Rock‘s discrimination lawsuit against Cracker Barrel.  She says she and her daughter were ignored for half an hour while they wait for service.  Can I just say one thing before we get into this?

CARLSON:  Yes.

GEIST:  Have you ever eaten at a Cracker Barrel, pretty good. 

CARLSON:  I actually like Cracker Barrel.  

GEIST:  Pretty good, they have a little country store with fixings and what not, it‘s a lot of fun. 

CARLSON:  Wait, wait, so Willie, I just want to make clear that this is what you‘re telling me.  You‘re saying that if I have to wait for a half an hour in a restaurant to get my food, that qualifies me to get the Reverend Al Sharpton on my side? 

GEIST:  There‘s no question.  You know, the Reverend Al is our hero, I don‘t have to tell you that.  Do you think if you or I waited 30 minutes for a table that the Reverend Al would be there? 

CARLSON:  Probably not.

GEIST:  No, I don‘t think so.  But, once again, God bless the Right Reverend. That‘s—I‘ll continue to say that, right?  He‘s our man. 

CARLSON:  He‘s absolutely our guy and hopefully he‘ll come on the show soon to explain his cracker barrel lawsuit. 

GEIST:  For you he will.

CARLSON:  I hope so.

GEIST:  Well Tucker, as you know, Halloween now less than two weeks away.  I hate to take the fun out of things, but it‘s important to now consider the possibility that your child‘s costume may be a fiery death trap.  Our friends at Washington affiliate WRC provide us with this pyrotechnic Halloween safety display.  

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  When we lit this cheerleader costume‘s rope-like trim, the costume burned up completely in less than three minutes.  The foam on this ninja collar proved particularly flammable.  In less than three minutes, the ninja costume completely consumed by fire.  

Even this cute plush little monster costume for a toddler, within three minutes, destroyed by fire.  

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

GEIST:  Uh, I think the lesson is, just stay in the house this year, don‘t you think, Tucker?

CARLSON:  I don‘t know Willie.  If you read the fine print on that report.  And I don‘t mean any disrespect to our Washington affiliate, it‘s a great channel.  In less than three minutes, three minutes is a long time to be on fire.  It seems to me if you were on fire, the fire would be put out before three minutes. 

GEIST:  I think you‘d smell some smoke or pick up a little heat down around your legs probably if that was happening.  No, it was actually, it was a story about something that had happened to a girl.  So it‘s something that happened, it‘s serious.  But I think it‘s safe to go outside and not run the risk of catching on fire. I think you‘re ok kids. 

CARLSON:  I adamantly disagree with that Willie.  I watch local news, so I know how dangerous this world is. 

GEIST:  You have the fear of local news in you.

CARLSON:  Any moment you‘re out of doors the possibility you could spontaneously combust is there.  

GEIST:  Yes, there‘s no question.  So stay inside and watch TV, that‘s allowed.  In other taking the fun out of children‘s lives news, Tucker, an elementary school in Massachusetts has banned the game tag from its grounds.  Touch football and other chasing games are also outlawed.  The principal of Willett Elementary School in Hatboro, Massachusetts says, quote, “It‘s a time when accidents happen.”  The war on tag comes on the heels of the National Anti-Dodge ball jihad over the last few years.  Tucker, I‘m just going to say something, times have really, really changed.  When I was in elementary school, we played a game called red butt where someone would line up against the wall, facing the wall, and we would fire racquet balls at them.  It was like Taliban stoning and it was a game, it was a good time.  We‘re getting soft.

CARLSON:  Massachusetts is the most woosified state, not just in the United States but in the whole world.  I mean it is really just the wimpiest place in America, badly.

GEIST:  Put tag back in the playground, it‘s going to be ok.

CARLSON:  Willie Geist, thanks Willie.  That‘s our show for today.  Thanks for watching.  Up next, “HARDBALL WITH CHRIS,” see you back here tomorrow.

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

END   

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