updated 11/6/2006 11:46:37 AM ET 2006-11-06T16:46:37

Guests: John Walsh, Matthew Felling, Tony Snow, Steve Adubato, Pat

Buchanan, Rachel Sklar, Courtney Hazlett, Ashlan Gorse, Suzanne Somers

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST:  Right now in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY: Sex, drugs and sleazy scandals, just another day at the office for the 2006 Republican Party.  Ted Haggard, close White House ally, outspoken opponent of gay marriage and leader of the 30-million-member National Association of Evangelicals, is busted for allegedly having sex with the same gay prostitute who sold him illegal drugs.

Last night, Haggard resigned from the National Association of Evangelicals and his own Colorado church.  At first, he denied, denied, denied, but here‘s what Haggard had to say earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TED HAGGARD, FORMER PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ASSOC. OF EVANGELICALS:  I

called him to buy some meth, but I threw it away.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  And who were you buying the meth for?

HAGGARD:  No one.  I was buying it for me, but I never used it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Have you every used meth before?

HAGGARD:  No, I have not.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  So...

HAGGARD:  And I did not ever use it with him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  And did you ever have sex with him?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  No, I did not.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Didn‘t inhale, either.  Haggard also admitted that he went to a hotel room to, quote, “get a massage” from the gay prostitute.  Haggard‘s close ties to the White House is one more blow to the battered GOP as the 2006 election season really does shape up to be the campaign from hell for the Republican Party.

First Foley and now this.  What is a conservative evangelical voter to think?  Mr. Haggard‘s accuser, Mike Jones, did fail a preliminary lie-detector test this morning, but Mr. Haggard‘s own church said the preacher admitted to some of the allegations in private.  Haggard‘s alleged gay prostitute told his side of the story to MSNBC‘s Rita Cosby earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE JONES, GAY PROSTITUTE:  I don‘t understand why he would say that he met me at a hotel room.  He was trying to be so secretive.  He never have never appeared in public around me ever, and so I never met him at a hotel room.  He always came to my place.  And as far as just a massage, hey, if that‘s what he wants to call it, you know, that‘s up to him.

RITA COSBY, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT:  How many times are you claiming that you met with Reverend Haggard at your place to have sex?

JONES:  Roughly once a month for three years.  I would say over 30 times.

COSBY:  Do you have any proof that he actually paid for sex, that he actually hired a prostitute?

JONES:  Do I have any proof?  No.  I mean, I have no proof that he paid me.  I mean, I didn‘t film the transaction.  I can only tell you that the last time he wanted to get together with me, he did send me an envelope that had two $100 bills in it.

COSBY:  And I understand you have that envelope with you?

JONES:  I do.

COSBY:  But again, that‘s just an envelope.  Can you show us the envelope?

JONES:  Well, I will show you the envelope.  And the interesting thing is, he always went by the name Art, which I understand now—and I didn‘t know this—his middle name is Arthur.  So now it kind of makes sense how he came up with the name Art.

COSBY:  And you‘re saying this is from him.  As we‘re looking at the name Art, and you‘re saying that is, indeed, as you say, his middle name.

JONES:  Well, that‘s what I understand.  His middle name is Arthur.

COSBY:  And how did you find out that he is Reverend Haggard?

JONES:  About six months ago, I was watching—this is the time “The Da Vinci Code” movie came out.  I was watching the History Channel, and they were doing a show on the anti-Christ, and all of a sudden, his face shows up as, you know, an expert.  And I go—I didn‘t say, That looks like Art.  I go, Oh, my God, that‘s Art.  I still didn‘t know who he was.  I pulled him up on the Internet, and I have to tell you, I go, Whoa.

COSBY:  When did you end your relationship?

JONES:  Well, there was no emotions in this relationship at all.  It was strictly business.  And the last time I...

COSBY:  Strictly sex?

JONES:  Strictly sex.  And it ended in August.

COSBY:  And why did it end?

JONES:  I don‘t know.  He just stopped calling me.

COSBY:  What other evidence do you have of—beyond what he‘s saying

he‘s admitting, as you just heard, that he was purchasing meth one time. 

What evidence do you have...

JONES:  Well, the other evidence I have, I did have two voice-mails.  And you have to understand, yesterday he was denying he even knew me.  And then earlier this morning, he was admitting some of the allegations are true.  And it‘s—the only reason he really came forward was he finally heard the voice-mails, and it was his voice and he had to admit it.

COSBY:  Why are you revealing this now?  You know, here we are, five days before a major election.  A lot of people are wondering what‘s up with the timing?

JONES:  Well, I have to tell you, I‘ve known about this for about six months, and you know, I really contemplated this.  This was very agonizing for me.  I wasn‘t sure what to do with this.  The more I researched about him, the angrier I got.

COSBY:  Were you ever paid off?  Did any political party get to you?

JONES:  I made this decision myself.  I didn‘t consult my friends or anybody.  No organization, no group did I consult with.  Nobody knew I was going to do this.

COSBY:  If Reverend Haggard is watching right now, what do you want to say to him?

JONES:  You know, I want to tell him I‘m really sorry that he‘s in the position he‘s in.  You know, what this proves is we‘re all human.  We are all sinners.  But when you‘re in a position of authority and a role model for millions of people, you really need to practice what you preach.  And I hope that after this passes, he can continue for—in the church, if that‘s what he chooses.  And I wish the best for him.

But I owed this to the gay community that has to put up with hypocrisy from the religious right because they want all the benefits in life, but they don‘t want the gay community to have the same thing.  And it‘s simply wrong.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Here now is Joan Walsh—she‘s editor-in-chief for Salon.com, and Matthew Felling, media director for the Center for Media and Public Affairs.  Joan, this guy talks to the White House once a week.  He‘s been, you know, associated with Republican movements and certainly the drive to end same-sex marriage.  This comes on the heels, of course, of the Foley scandal.  We have two October surprises here, even though one of them goes into November, and it‘s two Republicans, and it has to do with some very inappropriate gay relationships.  Can this campaign get any worse for the GOP?

JOAN WALSH, SALON.COM:  I don‘t see how, Joe.  I mean, we‘ve been talking about the GOP being the party of Iraq and having to face up to that quagmire, and now it‘s the party of just rank hypocrisy.  I mean, this would not be such a big deal without the Foley scandal.  And then on top of the Foley scandal, we still haven‘t gotten to the bottom of who protected Foley.  And you know—and then it comes after David Kuo‘s book about the way evangelicals have been used by Karl Rove and the White House.

So it‘s a terrible tragedy for this man‘s family.  Nobody likes to see anything like this happen.  But when you‘ve made yourself the bedroom police and you‘ve got these things going on in your own bedroom, or hotel bedroom, well, it‘s a good day to be a San Francisco Democrat, where we live and let live.  And I think...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Joan, you are a San Francisco Democrat.  And both...

WALSH:  I am.

SCARBOROUGH:  ... you and I grew up in Christian households, where we learn, Judge not lest ye be judged.  And yet you look at these two Republican scandals, and what I find so fascinating is not the fact that they‘ve had gay relationships, it‘s the fact that Mark Foley was the champion of protecting young people...

WALSH:  Right.  And...

SCARBOROUGH:  ... from predators on the Internet, and he was a predator on the Internet.  And you have Ted Haggard, who is fighting against same-sex marriage, and says...

WALSH:  Fire and brimstone.

SCARBOROUGH:  ... homosexuality‘s a sin—fire and brimstone, and it‘s not even—not even said in love (ph).  I mean, it is a fire and brimstone speech, and now he‘s busted for having sex with a gay prostitute who also sells him methamphetamines.

WALSH:  And he‘s now admitted he bought the meth and he had a massage.  So you know, earlier in the day, we were having conversations about the credibility of the accuser, but now, at best, we‘ve got Haggard lying yesterday about knowing the guy, and now admitting he bought drugs and got a massage from a gay prostitute.  So it doesn‘t get any worse.

And you know, it‘s a sad thing to be talking about.  I think Iraq is, you know, much more of a valid campaign issue in a lot of ways, except for this history of first loving and leaving their evangelical base, and also really making electoral hay beating up on gay people.  So you know, it‘s tragic, but it‘s also—they deserve it.  They made their own bed, so to speak.

SCARBOROUGH:  Let‘s take a listen to what James Dobson said about all of this.  I know Dr. Dobson and I know he‘s got to be crushed about this, about this ally of his.  He, of course, is the founder and chairman of Focus on the Family, and this is what he had to say about Reverend Haggard.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAMES DOBSON, FOUNDER AND CHAIRMAN, FOCUS ON THE FAMILY:  It‘s just breathtaking to hear that maybe he may have had, you know, a private life that we haven‘t known about.  But let‘s wait until the facts come out before we jump to that conclusion.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Matthew, I think the operative word there is “breathtaking.”  It is breathtaking hypocrisy, and to me, it—what makes the reverend‘s situation all the worse is the fact that he spent the past couple days denying, denying, denying, instead of saying, You know what?  I messed up.  I was a hypocrite.  Please forgive me.  Hasn‘t he mishandled this thing terribly even since this news broke?

MATTHEW FELLING, CENTER FOR MEDIA AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS:  Yes, completely.  He has gone to the playbook that was outdated 20 years ago.  You were saying breathtaking.  And I agree with Joan, it‘s extremely sad.  What hypocrisy stories do, as journalists, is they get the readers‘ and the viewers‘ blood boiling because these are people who sit there in front of the camera or talk to you from the pulpit and say, Do this one thing.  And they just make you feel like an inferior person for not going along with them and for not seeing everything eye to eye, they instill some guilt in you, and then the fact that they‘re doing something the exact opposite behind closed doors.

We are—as you and I have talked before, there are culture warriors going on.  There are people in this culture war.  And unfortunately, all the people inside the culture war, it seems like they‘re taking on friendly fire.  We have people who go on national radio and lambaste Welfare mothers, and at the same time, they‘re addicted to Oxycontin.  We have people out there who are saying one thing, doing the exact opposite.  And what Haggard did today, where he‘s just denying until he can‘t deny any further, and then denying even still, and then—who goes to a hotel room with a gay prostitute for just a massage?  This is a guy—I saw on Haggard‘s Web site today—he actually had written a pamphlet called “No More Lonely Nights.”  I think some of his...

WALSH:  Ouch.

FELLING:  I think some of his—yes, I think some of his constituents might want to reread that book a little bit with that knowledge now.

SCARBOROUGH:  In the end, Joan, what impact does it have next Tuesday in the mid-term elections?  Does it depress the evangelical Christians from going out to vote?

WALSH:  How does it not?  How are you not incredibly depressed this weekend as an evangelical Christian?  I don‘t see how people go in and pull the lever for Republicans.  I mean, there‘s already conflict among many evangelical Christians about being so involved in politics and so tied to the White House.  So this has to give people a lot of second thoughts, and it clearly depresses the base.

FELLING:  Exactly, Joan.  These—the religious right is the trump card for the conservatives and for the GOPs, and they just completely might have just tossed it away with this movement.  And as you said earlier, there is something—there‘s an initiative on the ballot in Colorado about gay marriage, and it‘s really going to—it‘s really going to wreak havoc with that.

SCARBOROUGH:  And I think that‘s really where the biggest impact is going to be felt, in the state of Colorado, where there really are culture wars going on and going to be going on next Tuesday.

Joan Walsh and Matthew Felling, thanks for being with me.  And you

know, the sad thing is that there are so many people that followed this

man, 30 million people, 30 million evangelicals.  And tell me those people

they don‘t expect perfection, they just expect people to be straightforward with them.  And it‘s—again, it bears repeating time and time again, you know, there are always the bumper stickers that say, Christians aren‘t perfect, they‘re just forgiven?  Well, that may be true, but the rank hypocrites who put themselves out as something they‘re not are not forgiven.

Still ahead: Think the White House is worried about the mid-terms?  Guess again.  White House press secretary Tony Snow comes to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY to tell us why he‘s confident Republicans are going to hold both Houses.  My interview with Tony coming up next.

Plus: Down and dirty.  See why so many attacks and the ads are debuting during the crucial last weekend.  And what a change in strategy that is.  And later, actress and author Suzanne Somers is in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY to tell us about her controversial new best-seller, “Ageless,” and what she now thinks of “Three‘s Company” and how her legs made her a fortune.  Stick around.  We got a lot to go in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY on Friday night.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, welcome back.  You know, the outcome of Tuesday‘s mid-term elections could decide the fate of the Bush administration‘s final two years in practice.  It most definitely will, in fact.  But most in the West Wing are putting on a happy face, confident their party is going to stay in power.  Last night, I talked to White House press secretary Tony Snow and asked him if, deep down, the White House really is concerned that their party‘s going to lose control of Congress on Tuesday.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TONY SNOW, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY:  Well, look, you‘re concerned in any election.  As you also know, even though you quite often had races that were pretty easy, the fact is, you don‘t take anything for granted.  So we‘re working hard.  And we are—the president is going to be on the road, he‘s on the road now, will be so until election day, which is the way it ought to be.

On the other hand, let me put it this way.  It‘s a very interesting political campaign because the Democrats have decided not to have anything constructive to say about how to win the war in Iraq or how to wage the war on terror.  Everything the president has proposed, Patriot Act, terror surveillance program, the Military Commissions Act, even dealing in some cases with war funding, Democrats have said, No, no, no, no.  They complain, but what do they propose?

See, it‘s interesting.  Republicans can get motivated to go to the polls on the basis of the things the president wants to do.  Democrats are trying to motivate their base on the basis of not liking George W. Bush.  This is all about going after George W. Bush, hating George W. Bush or not liking him.  There are two different kinds of stimuli here, or incentives, and I think Republican voters have something to come out for.

In addition, we‘ve got a very strong ground operation.  Everybody‘s going to be working hard on that.  And you start taking a look at the numbers, and I know you do, state by state and district by district, we think we‘re going to hold both Houses.

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Tony, while I was watching your press conference about John Kerry, I started counting up the number of times that you suggested that the poor senator from Massachusetts should just apologize.  I want to play you a clip.  You won‘t be able to see it, but you‘ll certainly be able to hear it...

(CROSSTALK)

SNOW:  I was there.  I kind of know what went on.  OK.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SNOW:  ... sufficient to convey an apology, I‘m sorry.

really easy.  Say, I‘m sorry.

He needs to apologize.  And the way you clean the slate is say, I didn‘t mean to say it, I‘m sorry.

You need the apologize for what you said.  It‘s not hard, I‘m sorry.  I mean, this is helpful advice.  Just say, I‘m sorry I messed up, please forgive me.

You say something and it‘s not what you meant to say, you apologize.  You say, I‘m sorry.  We‘re throwing you a lifeline, buddy!  Just say you‘re sorry.

What you do is you simply apologize.

Why don‘t you just say, I‘m sorry.  I‘m sorry, guys.

I‘m sorry.

And the way you deal with it when you make an insult, you say you‘re sorry!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  I counted 16 “I‘m sorry‘s” and Pat Buchanan, a former communication director, a guy you and I both know well, suggested that you may have been trying to back the poor senator into the corner.  Why did you throw him 16 lifelines suggesting that he say he‘s sorry?  And do you accept his apology?

SNOW:  Because I got asked the question 20 times.  I figure 16 times you‘ve to answer it straight up.  No, look, he doesn‘t—I don‘t have to accept his apology.  He wasn‘t insulting me, he was insulting members of the armed forces.  Those are the people you need to ask.  But (INAUDIBLE)

SCARBOROUGH:  Do you really think that he was insulting members of the armed forces, or do you think he just was very bad at telling a joke?

SNOW:  I don‘t—look, it doesn‘t come off as a joke.  And the idea that, you know, you missed an added word doesn‘t quite add up.  I mean, look, it‘s what he said.  Joe, you were in public life.  You‘re still in public life.  You know that if you or I say something stupid or it comes off the wrong way, it doesn‘t matter what you meant to say, people are going to take a look at the words.  They‘re going to play it, and all you have to say is?

SCARBOROUGH:  I‘m sorry.

SNOW:  There you go.

SCARBOROUGH:  And it works every single time.

SNOW:  Got you to do it, too.

SCARBOROUGH:  You screw up and you say I‘m a human being, I made a mistake...

SNOW:  Yes!

SCARBOROUGH:  ... I‘m dumb.  And that‘s what Ronald Reagan always knew.  He always knew it was more important to be self-deferential than anything else in front of the voters.  The thing that you seem you seem to have that a lot of my colleagues in the press don‘t have is that you‘ve got a cheerful demeanor that even disarms somebody like NBC‘s David Gregory, who, of course, had a very contentious relationship with some of your predecessors.  It seems like the wall has come down a bit over the past several months between the White House press secretary and the press itself.  I‘ve got to believe that‘s good for both sides, right?

SNOW:  I do, too.  Look, I think we‘ve got a good working relationship.  I really like David.  David—and I‘ve said to this to many people.  He passes one of the most important tests in my life, which is the polite kid test.  His son Max is about as polite a kid as you‘ll ever see.  He shakes your hand, looks you straight in the eye, calls you Mr. Snow. 

He‘d call you Mr. Scarborough, of course.

(LAUGHTER)

SNOW:  But I like that.  That tells me something about an engaged dad.  And David—I love sparring with him.  He asks good, sharp questions.  So we had an exchange a couple weeks ago, and at the end of the press conference, he looked at me and said, That was fun!  And I thought, Perfect!

(LAUGHTER)

SNOW:  I want members of the press to ask me tough questions, but I don‘t want this to be open warfare because ultimately, I‘ve got to help out members of the press.  And if you‘re in a situation of distrust or animosity, it‘s not going to be good for you, it‘s not going to be good for them, and it‘s certainly not going to be good for the president.  Besides, I do love my job.  It‘s fun.

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, thanks so much, Tony.

SNOW:  Joe, had a great time.  Have me back.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCARBOROUGH:  And coming up: With just four days to go to the election, candidates are getting ready to hit the airwaves with some 600 new ads.  We‘re going to show you some of the most outrageous ones you haven‘t seen yet and tell you why they‘re going negative at the end.  And next in “Must See S.C.,” John Kerry trying to reach and teach the value of a good education.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Time for tonight‘s “Must See S.C.,” some video you just got to see.  First up: You‘d think John Kerry would have learned his lesson after botching a punchline about the Iraq war, but he‘s still trying to tell jokes.  Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Here we go!

CONAN O‘BRIEN, “LATE NIGHT WITH CONAN O‘BRIEN”:  No, no, no.  I meant we should probably...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  A gentleman goes into a doctor‘s office...

O‘BRIEN:  Oh, God.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  ... and says, Doctor, every time I drink coffee, my eye hurts.  And the doctor says, Osama bin Laden is my hero.  Wait, that‘s not it.  That‘s not the exact punchline.

O‘BRIEN:  No, no, no.  Sir, sir, sir—you botched it, sir.  You botched it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I botched it!

O‘BRIEN:  Yes, you botched it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  And Kerry claims his original comments were directed at the president and his education, but as David Letterman points out, it may be Kerry who needs a little more schooling.

(VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh!  And coming up: In the final days of the election, candidates are stopping at nothing to smear their opponents, and hundreds more will debut this week.  And we‘re going to show you the latest, and I‘ll show you why they work, even though most hate to admit it.  And later, Suzanne Somers comes and knocks down our door in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  We‘ll talk to the actress about her controversial new health book, the secret to her success in business, and the real reason she was booted off of “Three‘s Company.”

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Still ahead on SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, how do you smear your opponent four days before an election?  With a new round of 600 over-the-top attack ads.  We‘re going to show you the latest offenders and why they‘re going to work, coming up next.  But first, here‘s the latest news you and your family need to know. 

(NEWSBREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Coming up, Suzanne Somers opens up about life after John Ritter, her successful business career, and what she thinks of doctors who say she should stop giving health advice.

And later, are you ready for more “Sex in the City”?  The latest on a possible reunion with Carrie and the girls in “Hollyweird.”

Hey, welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY on a Friday night.  Those stories in just minutes. 

But first, it‘s getting down to the wire, the final weekend before the midterm elections, and traditionally it‘s a time for candidates to get out, shake hands, and kiss babies and, in the South, to have their mamas tell everybody about what good kids they were. 

But this time around, it also means an all-out negative ad blitz with more than 600 ads set to be released this weekend.  And there‘s a great chance the vast majority of them will be—surprise, surprise—negative.  Check out this new ad by Connecticut Democrat Ned Lamont. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

NED LAMONT (D), CANDIDATE FOR U.S. SENATE:  I‘m Ned Lamont, and I approve this message.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I didn‘t see that coming.  I‘ve got to stop doing this.  Stupid car. 

LAMONT:  If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting a different result, why in the world would we send Joe Lieberman back to the U.S. Senate? 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Here now MSNBC political analyst Pat Buchanan and Rachel Sklar.  She‘s the media editor for “The Huffington Post.”  And media analyst Steve Adubato. 

You know, Pat, it used to be an old, predictable political playbook.  You attacked, attacked, attacked two or three weeks out, but in the final homestretch you got really nice, had these nice, sweet, gauzy ads.  That just ain‘t happening this year.  Why? 

PAT BUCHANAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST:  Well, the attack ads work, and Lamont is down 10 or 12 points, Joe.  I frankly don‘t think that‘s a very effective ad on Lieberman.  He‘s been saying the same things again and again, and having that little car bump into that wall doesn‘t do it for me. 

SCARBOROUGH:  But we‘re talking about a changed political environment, though, where people realize and say good things about themselves. 

BUCHANAN:  Oh, no, no...

SCARBOROUGH:  This doesn‘t move the numbers.

BUCHANAN:  It‘s too late to sell himself.  He‘s got to take Joe down. 

STEVE ADUBATO, MEDIA ANALYST:  Joe, you know...

SCARBOROUGH:  Steve Adubato, this is the meanest season of all. 

ADUBATO:  Absolutely.

SCARBOROUGH:  You‘ve actually done focus groups and talked to voters about these negative ads.  What‘s the impact with them? 

ADUBATO:  Well, you know, they‘re disgusted, and nobody is surprised to hear that.  And I‘m going to disagree with my good friend, Pat Buchanan, in this way.  He says they, quote, “work.”  Well, I‘m not sure how we‘re define working, Joe, because someone has to win and someone loses, and both campaigns are destroying each other.

So my question is, how would we define them not working?  The point is this:  Someone wins, but many, many people are turned off.  And the bigger issue is, Joe, what about all the good people who choose not to participate in the political process because they are going to be destroyed, their reputations tarnished, having nothing to do with what‘s real and everything to do with the nature of, you know, destructive personal politics today. 

And it doesn‘t work, and it‘s horrible for our system, and we‘ve got to turn it around. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Pat, this evening before I came to work, I was having dinner with my family.  We have the TV on looking at the local news, and every single commercial was a political ad, and every one of those political ads  negative, negative, negative.  It‘s not good for democracy...

BUCHANAN:  Let me tell you something, Joe.

SCARBOROUGH:  ... but is it the only way to win an election these days? 

BUCHANAN:  Well, look, they pay this money, and give the consultants this money, and do these ads, because, in the last analysis, they do work.  Let me tell you—I was in Iowa, Joe, and I went down and had a dinner for an hour just before the Iowa caucuses.  And there were Forbes ripping up Gramm, ripping up Dole, and all of them ripping each other up. 

And in the middle, there was this nice, little positive ad on me, and then they went back to ripping each other up.  But they were tearing each other down, frankly, and that‘s—in the last analysis, that‘s how they took Forbes out.  They tore him down. 

SCARBOROUGH:  They tore him to shreds. 

BUCHANAN:  Sure. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And, hey, I want you all to look at this ad that‘s being run in Oklahoma by an independent group.  It actually compares the Democratic candidate to Hitler. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  In 1936, Hitler told the people of Germany they should not do business with the Jews. 

UNIDENTIFIED GROUP:  Sieg heil! Sieg heil!  Sieg heil!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Within a few short years, he developed the Final Solution and murdered more than 6 million innocent souls.  In 2006, Governor Brad Henry is passing legislation and telling Oklahomans not to do business with Native Americans. 

If you believe racism is just as wrong in 2006 as it was in 1936, call Governor Henry‘s office today and tell him to stop discriminating against Oklahoma‘s Native Americans. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Rachel Sklar, that is an Internet ad by the Republican Party out in Oklahoma, an independent group going after a Democrat.  Does that work?  It just seems so over the top to me, I can‘t believe people would be swayed by that type of negative ad. 

RACHEL SKLAR, HUFFINGTONPOST.COM:  I think that is actually a really good point is that these negative ads, they reveal something about who is behind them, and who is endorsing them, who is putting their stamp of approval on them. 

There‘s something called Godwin‘s law, which is basically, whenever you invoke Hitler, you lose all of your credibility.  And I think that ad is a really good example of that. 

And another good example of that is the attack ad on Harold Ford, with the—just it was—I think I called it comically appalling, because it was just so ridiculous.  And that‘s the sort of thing that just makes the Republicans look bad or whoever is launching that attack ad. 

BUCHANAN:  You know, Joe, wait a minute.

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, Pat, Pat, hold on a second.  First of all, I have people in the studio telling me I need to correct myself.  That is an independent ad.  It goes after a Democratic governor.  I had said it was an independent ad but also used Republican next to it.  I assumed that because they were going after a Democratic governor. 

But, Pat Buchanan, a lot of times these negative ads go on there.  They offend a lot of people in Manhattan, and Hollywood, and Washington, D.C., but they work.  This Harold Ford ad, it may just be one of them, because right now Harold Ford is 10 points down. 

BUCHANAN:  Sure.

SCARBOROUGH:  And I criticized this ad last week.

BUCHANAN:  Well, you see, I felt the ad went after Harold, not on the race issue, but as a goody-two-shoes who goes to church, and they went at him—look, Joe, you and I know from the summer two years ago the Swift Boaters took down John Kerry.  He didn‘t answer.

SCARBOROUGH:  They beat him.

BUCHANAN:  There were negative ads.  They took down his principal asset.  They were credible guys, Vietnam vets, Medal of Honor winners, POWs.  They took him down.

ADUBATO:  You know, Pat...

SCARBOROUGH:  And if you go back to 2000, John McCain was beaten because of negative ads that were put out there by the Wyly brothers in the Midwest.  It‘s that simple.  Those negative ads did work.  Steve, I‘m going to have you respond after we listen to this radio ad from North Carolina about legal rights for illegal immigrants.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Brad Miller gives these aliens welfare, driver‘s licenses, Social Security, free health care, free lawyers, free public education, even free school lunches.  These aliens pay no income tax and send their money back to Mexico.  Then, they take to the streets, waving the Mexican flag and demanding more. 

Unbelievably, Brad Miller voted to allow these illegals to burn the American flag while waving the Mexican flag.  Brad Miller supports gay marriage and sponsored a bill to let American homosexuals bring their foreign homosexual lovers to this country on a marriage visa. 

If Miller had his way, America would be nothing but one big fiesta for illegal aliens and homosexuals.  But if you elect Vernon Robinson, that party‘s over.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ADUBATO:  Boy...

SCARBOROUGH:  Steve, I‘m not going to ask you...

ADUBATO:  ... that Brad Miller seems like a bad guy, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, I‘ll tell you what.

ADUBATO:  Oh, come on.

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, Buchanan, you didn‘t write that, did you? 

ADUBATO:  By the way, I have...

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  ... I‘m not for Brad Miller, I‘ll tell you that. 

ADUBATO:  Pat, don‘t you dare say that spot worked, Pat. 

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  So anyway, hold on a second.  Go ahead. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  We might better cut Buchanan‘s mike off after that one. 

ADUBATO:  Do me a favor.  Cut Pat‘s mike off, because I‘m going to get this one off.  I‘ve got to tell you, that spot is so out of control, who can figure out which part is true or which part‘s not?  This guy‘s worst than Hitler.  This guy‘s a horrible guy.

And let me tell you something:  You go back to the Swift Boat thing, real quick, Joe.  The same people who put that Swift Boat ad together in New Jersey, this independent 527 group, you know what they did?  They put a spot on “The Sopranos” knock-off.  There‘s a guy who‘s supposed to be Italian—as an Italian-American, I‘m offended—he‘s supposed to be mob connected.  He‘s got a phone in an alleyway and he‘s saying, “Hey, guys, our friend, Bob Menendez, is—we‘d better help him out.  He‘s in trouble.  This guy, Tom Kean, Jr., in the U.S. Senate in New Jersey, we can‘t let him win.”

They‘re trying to imply that Menendez is somehow connected to the mob.  Well, let me tell you something:  That doesn‘t work.  Italian-Americans and other decent-thinking people are disgusted by it, and Tom Kean, Jr., made a mistake by not demanding that this independent group take it off the air.  It doesn‘t work.

BUCHANAN:  But let‘s come down to Earth, though.  Let‘s come down to Earth.

ADUBATO:  OK, Pat, I will.

BUCHANAN:  No, the reason—look, why do they put hundreds of millions of dollars, the best minds in politics, into attack ads at the end of the campaign?

ADUBATO:  Because they have no imagination, Pat. 

SKLAR:  They are wasting money and resources.

BUCHANAN:  Well, it‘s because they work.

ADUBATO:  No imagination, Pat.

BUCHANAN:  It works.  Maybe they don‘t have imagination, but what they imagine does work. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Guys, hold on a second.  Rachel, I‘ll go to you in a second, but let‘s look at one last ad.  Now, this one actually is from a guy who‘s not even running for office, but we think it‘s one of the best ones out there.  Take a look. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOSH JENNINGS, NOT RUNNING FOR CONGRESS:  Tired of politicians using their power and influence to fatten their wallets?  Then maybe it‘s time for a new kind of congressman. 

A lot of people have been asking me, “Hey, Josh, how come you‘re running for Congress?”  Dude, do you have any idea how much a congressman makes in a year?  Neither did I.  So I Googled it:  $165 g‘s a year!  So if I win, I‘m totally throwing a pizza party at my place—well, my parents‘ place.  But it‘s OK.  They‘ll be out of town.  They go to visit my sister at college all the time.  Let‘s do this.  Let‘s rock the House of Representatives. 

ANNOUNCER:  Josh Jennings, a man who gives back to the people. 

JENNINGS:  I‘m Josh Jennings, and I approve this message, because I want to have a party up in the hizzy with the pizzy. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Rachel, it‘s a pretty funny ad, but for the fact that I think the real one we ran from North Carolina was more bizarre and funnier.  Talk about these political ads, the negative ads, and if you think that it‘s actually going to work this final weekend? 

SKLAR:  Well, I just want to address the Josh Jennings ad first, because I think it‘s important to note that, funny as it was, it was actually a purely positive ad.  He was talking about what he was going to give voters:  a pizza party.  That is more than any of these other ads have done. 

(LAUGHTER)

And I think that that‘s really what‘s going on this weekend.  Unfortunately, you‘ve got—basically both sides are campaigning on the negative.  You‘ve got—the Democrats are campaigning on the backlash and enough and enough, and Republicans are campaigning on a vote for the Democrats is a vote for the terrorists to win.  So that means that both sides are going for the jugular, so unfortunately.

(CROSSTALK)

ADUBATO:  Joe, a final point.

SCARBOROUGH:  We...

ADUBATO:  Can I make this final point real quick?  Pat, you said they wouldn‘t do it if it didn‘t work, they wouldn‘t spend millions of dollars.  It‘s because the political and media consultants are scared to death to have the candidate look in the camera and say who he or she is and what they would do.  Because if they ever lost that race, they would blame it on that ad.  They have no imagination. 

(CROSSTALK)

SKLAR:  I think unfortunate because...

BUCHANAN:  Let me just say a word here.  The reason you got these type of things, all of this stuff is jammed in the last weekend.  How do you get somebody‘s attention?  You got to do something bizarre, something a little different.  I mean, otherwise, it‘s all a blur. 

SCARBOROUGH:  It‘s all a blur, no doubt about it. 

ADUBATO:  A big blur, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH:  A big, old blur.  And right now, it‘s a big, nasty, greasy blur, and it seems to be filling and polluting the airwaves.  Pat Buchanan, congratulations on that North Carolina commercial.  I think it‘s one of your best works in years.

BUCHANAN:  I‘ve been working on it a long time. 

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  Rachel Sklar and Steve Adubato, thank you all so much for coming out on a Friday night.  I really do appreciate it. 

And coming up next, should you take health care advice from Suzanne Somers?  Well, a lot of people are.  Her book, “Ageless,” is topping the charts right now, and she responds to the critics.  Plus, we‘ll talk about her legendary career. 

And later, Rachael Ray bakes up a casserole of trouble, angering the original domestic diva herself, Martha Stewart.  Meow!  We‘ll show you how Martha got her sweet revenge, later in “Hollyweird.”

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You may remember Suzanne Somers as a lovable ditz, Chrissy Snow, on the hit sitcom, “Three‘s Company,” but she is also a bestselling author.  And her latest book, “Ageless,” tackles hormone therapy and aging, and it‘s going to be the number-one advice book with “The New York Times” bestseller list next week.  It is yet another bestseller for this remarkable woman, but not everybody‘s a big fan, as some doctors are calling her irresponsible.  I asked Suzanne what readers will get from the book. 

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SUZANNE SOMERS, ACTRESS AND AUTHOR:  If you read this book, you will understand how your body works in layman‘s terms, because I think that‘s my talent.  I can explain science in layman‘s terms.  I don‘t know why I understand the pathways, but I do.  And when you sit in front of your doctor, you will no longer be helpless. 

SCARBOROUGH:  What do you say to doctors who say, “Don‘t buy Suzanne Somers‘ book.  It‘s dangerous.  She‘s giving you advice, and it‘s not good advice. 

SOMERS:  If doctors are upset with me, that was not my intention.  My intention is to challenge to say, “I know you didn‘t learn it in medical school.  I know that today our medical schools are not teaching it.  I know that you‘re only given four hours approximately of instruction on prescribing hormones and 12 weeks of endocrinology.  It‘s not enough.” 

JOHN RITTER, ACTOR:  I did it!  I did it! 

SOMERS:  You did it what?  You did it what?

RITTER:  I told Travers off and got out of cooking dinner for him, and, Janet, I have you to thank for it. 

SOMERS:  What are you kissing me for.  I didn‘t do anything? 

RITTER:  Oh, sorry, I‘ll take it back. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You were a trailblazer then like you‘re a trailblazer now.  When you were on “Three‘s Company,” you actually had the audacity to step forward and challenge people then, like you‘re challenging people now, and demand equal pay for your work. 

SOMERS:  I think you‘re very astute in that, when I said, “Hey, you know, how come the men are being paid 10 times more than me, and I have the highest demographics in all women in television between the ages of 18 and 49, the desired demographics, and I‘m on the number-one show in the country at a time when there are only three choices?  How come?”  And I got fired for asking, because they didn‘t want to open that can of worms. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Though it‘s depressing to me, there are some people that may not remember that show.  I want to show a quick clip from “Three‘s Company.”

SOMERS:  OK.

Oh, that‘s cute. 

RITTER:  Yes, there‘s nothing a girl likes more than a little tickle on the tummy. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Like yourself, John Ritter really became a part of Americana.  Talk about your relationship with John after the show ended and, of course, before he passed away. 

SOMERS:  Well, you know, when I did ask for that raise, the producers of my show and those executives at the network at that time created a mob fury, so either you were with them and against me or with me and against them.  So John and Joyce were put in a position where—I know it was stirred up so much, because one day I was walking down a street in Beverly Hills, and the wardrobe guy from “Three‘s Company” was walking up the street.  He saw me and, when he saw me, he crossed the street to avoid talking to me. 

And I thought, man, there‘s some mob fury going on.  So that helped me to understand why John and Joyce when in something—got so angry, but it never made any sense.

SCARBOROUGH:  When was the first time that you realized that, hey, even though I left “Three‘s Company,” I‘m going to have a really successful career on my own as a businesswoman? 

SOMERS:  Well, there was a moment—and it took me a year—I was depressed for a year—asking myself, “Oh, why didn‘t I just shut up, and why did I do this, and why didn‘t I just—why wasn‘t I just happy with the way it was?”  I was full of the “Why did I‘s?”

And then one day I said to my husband, “We have to find a way that I can make a living where I don‘t have to turn up.”  And he said, “You mean passive income?”  And I said, “Whatever.”  And that‘s when we got involved with the Thighmaster. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Great legs.

SOMERS:  Thank you. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  How do you get them?

SOMERS:  I used to do aerobics until I dropped.  Then I found Thighmaster.  Every single time you squeeze Thighmaster, you strengthen and tone right where you need it, so it‘s easy to squeeze, squeeze your way to shapely hips and thighs. 

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCARBOROUGH:  And, of course, the rest is history.  Suzanne Somers, number one again.  “Hollyweird” is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Hey, tell your bodyguard to keep the paparazzi away, baby, because it‘s time for “Hollyweird.”

First up, the battle of the daytime domestic divas.  Martha Stewart‘s not very happy with the “Rachael Ray Show.”  Take a listen. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARTHA STEWART, TELEVISION HOST:  You know, I have actually never met Rachael Ray.  And I think she‘s, you know, a really fun, lively, young woman.  And she has Barry on her show today at 10:00 in New York.  Now, that‘s kind of weird.  And he was supposed to be on her show tomorrow, but somehow she moved it up today, and he‘s on live on our show.  So I don‘t know.  I don‘t know.  I think it‘s just not right for the artist.  I mean, the artist should be seen by as many people as possible, don‘t you think, guys?  We‘re fighting over Barry. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Meow!  Here now, “OK” magazine‘s senior report, the woman that Gotham (ph) says cares too much, Courtney Hazlett.  And also “Life and Style Weekly‘s” editor-at-large, Ashlan Gorse.

Let‘s start with you, Ashlan.  What‘s going on with this fight over Barry Manilow, for God‘s sake?

ASHLAN GORSE, “LIFE AND STYLE WEEKLY”:  Wow.  Wow.  Who knew Barry could ignite such a catfight?  But, you know, Martha Stewart, I think she‘s just a little nervous.  Rachael Ray is cute.  She‘s a lot younger.  And her show is doing really well.  That was just kind of a cheap punch I thought, because, look, it‘s sweeps.  Everybody wants to put they‘re best show on.  And that‘s what happened in this case. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And, Courtney Hazlett, do you think that Martha may be concerned about this up-and-comer Rachael Ray?

COURTNEY HAZLETT, “OK” MAGAZINE:  I don‘t know.  She might be a little bit concerned, but I think Rachael Ray is a brave woman to pick a fight with a lady who‘s gone to prison and still maintains she shouldn‘t have had to go, the FEC was wrong.  She‘s picked a fight with one tough woman.  That said, let‘s look at the real victim here, and that‘s Barry Manilow.

SCARBOROUGH:  Oh, no doubt about it.  Poor Barry.

And, of course, Courtney, we hear that “OK” magazine‘s reporting that “Sex and the City” may be back on.  What‘s the story?

HAZLETT:  That‘s right.  Reps for Kristin Davis, they‘re talking about her movie “Deck the Halls” coming out.  And they‘re kind of saying, at the same point in time, you know, there are talks going on that the women of this cast are getting along again and talks are in progress.  So just keep our fingers crossed. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Women across the nation are squealing right, Ashlan?

GORSE:  When I heard this today, I was jumping up and down in my apartment.  I mean, “Sex and the City” really just changed the generation.  It changed pretty much all women I know watching television and HBO.  And I just hope, hope, hope that this is true.  I will go see the movie every day for a week.

SCARBOROUGH:  OK, that and “Borat.”  And, of course, David Hasselhoff fans are going to want to head to Vegas next year.  The actor just signed up to join the cast of “The Producers.”  Courtney, big news for all of us, huh?

HAZLETT:  This is huge news for all of us.  What‘s kind of funny, though, I don‘t think the Hoff realizes that the Vegas stop is often the last stop on the celebrity bus route.  I mean, a lot of performers, they don‘t go very far after Vegas, but he‘s ready to put himself out there. 

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s it, baby.  Last stop:  Vegas.  Hey, sorry we didn‘t have more time.  It‘s election season.  Courtney Hazlett, Ashlan Gorse, thanks for being here Friday night.  We‘ll see you next week in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.

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

END   

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