Tom Tancredo, Ron Hayduk, Michelle Malkin, Anthony Weiner, Larry Johnson, Tim Burger, Alexander Haig
PAT BUCHANAN, GUEST HOST: Good evening.
The FBI has issued a new terror warning. Al Qaeda may use helicopters and limousines laden with bombs to target U.S. buildings. Are terrorists planning a major attack on U.S. soil before the November elections?
Then, should the U.S. use racial profiling to help win the war on terror? Author Michelle Malkin says yes. She‘s here to tell us why America was right to intern Japanese American civilians in World War II and why political correctness risks America‘s defeat in the war on terror.
And later, 30 years ago today, President Richard Nixon resigned from office. His last chief of staff, General Alexander Haig, is here to reflect on the legacy of the 37th president.
ANNOUNCER: From the press room, to the courtroom, to the halls of Congress, Joe Scarborough has seen it all. Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.
BUCHANAN: I‘m Pat Buchanan. Joe has the night off.
Washington, Newark and New York City remain on heightened terror alert tonight as details about possible terror attacks continue to spill out. Attacks with bomb-laden limousines and helicopters are two of the latest revelations.
With me now to discuss the continued threat of terror is Tim Burger of “TIME” magazine and Larry Johnson, a former State Department official and counterterrorism expert.
Let me go to you first, Tim Burger.
Apparently, we have found the mother lode or something approaching the mother lode of terrorists plans. Can you lay out pretty much what they found in these computers in Pakistan?
TIM BURGER, “TIME”: Well, some of the items that we report on in the current issue of “TIME” are a plan to perhaps bomb New York Harbor, maybe attack ocean liners or tankers that are going through. You mentioned the limousines.
What the context of that was, they did surveillance on one of those buildings that were mentioned two Sundays ago in the new orange alert. And they learned that, if you want to put a bomb in the parking garage, which terrorists have done previously in America, as you know, if you want to put a bomb in the parking garage, you don‘t want to use a truck, like they used in the World Trade Center, because trucks weren‘t getting in. Instead, they saw limos were getting in and out easily. So they figure, you strip the seats out of the limo, pack it with explosives and they could leave their bomb. So those are some of the things.
BUCHANAN: All right, well, Time, I know they‘ve got discs. They‘ve got computers. They‘ve got names in there. And even though some of the material is three years old, this certainly seems to justify the tremendous apprehension and state of near alarm we saw from Secretary Ridge, does it not?
BURGER: Well, I suppose, you know, to say whether one thing or another is justified is for others. But in fact the information is important because it‘s known that al Qaeda has a long timeline on their planning. And also they didn‘t really explain it initially on Sunday, but later they explained that there‘s other information indeed that gives added urgency to the fact that they had all this surveillance done several years ago.
So they obviously had a very tough decision to make whether to do the alerts exactly the way they did. And there‘s been no attack, knock on wood, so far. So, so far so good.
BUCHANAN: Larry Johnson, are they using this material to start rolling up some of these cells?
LARRY JOHNSON, COUNTERTERRORISM EXPERT: Yes, they are.
But, Pat, the problem is that they‘ve put too much of it out there. Instead of using this behind the scenes to take these guys down and lead them to additional actors, they have been acting like a bunch of nervous Nellies and getting this stuff out in front of the public in a way that, frankly, in my judgment, never should have been there.
BUCHANAN: All right, let me follow up on that. I heard that the Pakistanis said the Americans should not have blown the operation when it was going as well as it did, when no one but we knew what we had.
BUCHANAN: And that we put it out too early. Who did that and why?
JOHNSON: Well, you have heard President Bush himself say it, that, well, if we didn‘t say anything and something happened, you would blame us.
I wish he was more worried about getting the job done than worried about who‘s going to get blamed. The point here is that we were given—this is like looking at the ultimate poker hand. You had access to the cards. You saw what they were talking about doing. They hadn‘t come up with specific plans. We basically heard planes, trains, automobiles, boats and aerial assault. They were doing brainstorming, as opposed to actual down to the nuts and bolts operation planning.
So, for the life of me, this is one of those cases where the immediate political consideration of, if we don‘t say something, we‘ll get blamed, took precedence over, let‘s get these guys and take them out finally.
BUCHANAN: OK, Congressman Anthony Weiner joins us now.
Let me read you what the FBI told “TIME” magazine. They said: “What we have over the United States is a net. At best, what we‘re doing is shrinking the mesh in the net. We‘re trying to kick down the door of the person who is going to drive the truck loaded with explosives. But can we do it in time?”
Is it your understanding that in time means before November, when something is planned very probably for Washington, D.C. or your state?
REP. ANTHONY WEINER (D), NEW YORK: Well, no one knows.
At the end of the, day we found al Qaeda to be remarkably blunt. They run planes into buildings. They run cars into buildings. They run boats into other boats. But, yes, the question is, are we intercepting a plan that was two years old and scrapped? Are we intercepting a plan that‘s not supposed to happen for another year until November? That‘s the question no one has been able to really answer.
I just hope that what we‘re doing is chasing down fresh leads, not chasing down things that have been left dormant for six or eight months.
BUCHANAN: But what we‘re hearing is that this material is being used. As Mr. Johnson said, maybe it was prematurely disclosed by the administration. But, apparently, it is being used to roll up cells and roll up individuals. And we‘re getting stuff done with it, whether these are active people that they‘re picking up, are they not?
BURGER: Well, we hope so.
Frankly, I don‘t know what to rely upon for that. Some of the briefings we have gotten in Congress have said, without revealing any intelligence, that some of the stuff was quite old. Some of it said, well, we had a lead that made us think that maybe these old reports were more active.
One thing is for sure. There‘s some commonsense things that we can do and maybe these reports are getting us to do them. The reports about helicopters, frankly, it‘s long overdue that we start to pay more attention to the idea that here in New York we have 300 and 500 helicopters taking off every day. No one knows where they go. The FAA doesn‘t track them and no one at TSA knows who‘s on them. So, even if these things are a little old, if they get us to take some of these commonsense steps, it‘s probably for the better.
BUCHANAN: Jim Burger, I want to bring up a point that was mentioned in passing in that “TIME” magazine piece. It talked about potential assassinations of members of Congress.
Now, I see where Nancy Pelosi I guess told some of these congressmen, look, this is serious stuff that these folks have. Does “TIME” magazine know of anyone who have been targeted and have they for good reasons withheld that name, not giving it out?
BURGER: Well, what we said in the story was that I believe a congressional leader had told us that some of them had been warned of possible assassination.
I was not aware of a specific individual being targeted per se, you know, surveillance on an individual. That doesn‘t mean it‘s not the case. Maybe they know that in intelligence. We didn‘t get that feeling. But, generally speaking, congressional leaders, with their prominence and accessibility—and frankly the 535 members of the House and Senate obviously are subject to that need to have some care brought to them in security.
BUCHANAN: All right, Larry Johnson, this would explain why you‘re getting all the extra and added security up there at Capitol Hill. And, frankly, when people have talked about something on the scale of 9/11, it seems to me virtually impossible for anyone to rival that, unless it‘s some incredible act of terror.
But, frankly, a series of killings or assaults or assassination attempts on a number of members of Congress at one time would be an enormously dramatic event. Have you picked up anything on that?
Again, I have been talking to some people who are privy to the intelligence who are professionals, not politicians. They think this is an overreaction. Look, there are things that can be done behind the scenes. It‘s not to say that we should discount that al Qaeda wants to attack us. Of course they want to attack us. If you didn‘t figure that out three years ago, you shouldn‘t be in a leadership position.
But have they sustained their ability to finance themselves, to get training wherever they want to, to have leadership attacked? No, they haven‘t. And this is what I don‘t get. The Bush administration, frankly, has been very successful in helping disrupt the al Qaeda network. But instead of dealing with the success of the disrupting, they‘re going to sort of a duck-and-cover approach that, oh, my God, they‘re going to get us and no matter what we do, they‘re going to get us, and so let‘s duck and cover.
I think the fear factor is obscene, because it diminishes us as Americans. These guys are a bunch of punks. We can stand up to them. They cannot defeat us. And for us to act that, oh, my God, they‘re going to come after us and there‘s nothing that we can do is a legal of cowardice that I find disgusting.
BUCHANAN: Do you agree?
WEINER: Pat, I have to agree.
I think that this changing of the colors of the warnings, getting everyone all on eggshells is not a way for a leader to make us feel safer. I think we want to feel that things are under control. And I think the Bush administration got the wrong message. The message isn‘t that we, the public, should get every piece of information as it emerges. The message of September 11 was that the information wasn‘t rising to the decision makers and they weren‘t taking steps that were adequate.
But I agree. I got a call the other day from someone who runs an after-school program, a camp program, said is it OK for the kids to play outside in the schoolyard today? You can imagine what kind of message that is sending to the children if that is the question that the administrator is asking.
BUCHANAN: Well, I‘ve got to agree with all of you, frankly. I think we‘re frightening ourselves to death with our own propaganda. There‘s no doubt we could be hit and we could be hurt. But the idea that these characters could defeat the United States of America is to me preposterous.
Congressman Weiner, Tim Burger, Larry Johnson, thanks for being with us today.
JOHNSON: Thanks, Pat.
WEINER: Thank you.
BUCHANAN: In a fearless new book, my next guest says everything you‘ve learned about Japanese internment camps during World War II is wrong and a misguided guilt about America‘s past is paralyzing the war on terror.
Joining me now, Michelle Malkin, author of “In Defense of Internment:
The Case For Racial Profiling in World War II and in the War on Terror.”
Michelle, you‘ve got another one of your books out here.
MICHELLE MALKIN, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Yes, I thought I would take it easy this time, Pat. I‘m just like you, not really into controversy.
BUCHANAN: Well, look, I remember when I was young and growing up, there was a ferocious argument over the wisdom of interning the Japanese Americans. And it came around to the view that it was wrong to do, to put the 110,000 -- I think 75,000 were citizens, 35,000 noncitizens—in these internment camps. They weren‘t Nazi concentration camps. They were internment camps—but it was wrong to do because they were not a threat. And Even J. Edgar Hoover said they were not a threat.
But you‘re saying it was the right thing to do?
MALKIN: Well, I think that, based on the military intelligence and legal assessments at the time, the Roosevelt administration did the best that it could do.
And I think that there‘s one big myth that needs to be cleared up right away. And that is that the 112,000 or so ethnic Japanese that were evacuated and relocated from the West Coast to the interior of the country, were not interned. Internment is a very technical legal term that applies only to enemy aliens from nations that we are at war with or that have threatened invasion.
And, in fact, there were 31,000 enemy aliens not just from Japan, but also from Germany and Italy and other axis countries who were put in Department of Justice camps. I think that‘s very important to point out, because it‘s been a myth that has been taught to generations of American schoolchildren who are brainwashed into hating America and into a big guilt trip on America that it was only the ethnic Japanese who were uniquely singled out. And that simply isn‘t true.
BUCHANAN: OK, but there were 110,000 or 112,000 Japanese Americans. Most of them were Japanese Americans. Not all of them were citizens. And they were taken off their land and they were moved inland and they were put in camps. I understand, if they wanted to go to other parts of the United States, that was fine. They couldn‘t return to California.
A lot of them lost their land and their property. But on Hawaii, as I understand it, Michelle, they were not, because they were 25 percent of the population. They couldn‘t intern 25 percent of the population, so they did it in California, which wasn‘t attacked, but not in Hawaii. Why?
MALKIN: Well, there‘s a two-word explanation for that, Pat. It‘s called martial law.
And I think it‘s really interesting that a lot of folks on the other side, whether it‘s the ACLU or the Japanese Americans or any of these ethnic groups that criticize what Roosevelt did on the West Coast point to Hawaii as the model, when in fact what happened in Hawaii was so much more of a Draconian measure. And to the Roosevelt administration‘s credit, it didn‘t even consider anything as Draconian as martial law on the West Coast.
And that affected in Hawaii not only Japanese Americans and ethnic Japanese, but every citizen was subject to, you know, military curfews and censorship and all sorts of restrictions that were far worse than anything that happened to the Japanese on the West Coast.
BUCHANAN: OK, Michelle, you hold on. We‘re going to ask you how this can be applied, internment, in any way to what‘s going on in the war on terror and Islamic Americans when we come back.
BUCHANAN: Up next, more with “New York Times” best-selling author Michelle Malkin on why she thinks racial profiling can help in the war on terror.
You‘re watching SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY on MSNBC.
BUCHANAN: We‘re back with more from Michelle Malkin, author of “In Defense of Internment: The Case For Racial Profiling in World War II and in the War on Terror.”
Michelle, let me—you talk about your politically incorrect premise in your book. Let me quote you. You say: “Civil liberties are not sacrosanct. The inalienable rights articulated in the Declaration of Independence do not appear in random order. Liberty and the pursuit of happiness cannot be secured and protected without securing and protecting life first.”
You seem to be arguing that national security comes first ahead of liberty. Is that fair?
MALKIN: Well, actually, what I‘m saying is that in order for us to have liberty, we have to have national security. And I think that in the current debate, or nondebate, rather, over civil liberties and national security, people assume that there is no amount of civil liberties that we can tolerate in terms of a reduction.
And my book counterbalances the vast majority of books that have come out since September 11, because I say, look, if it is an inconvenience for a Muslim American or an Arab American to have to endure some level of heightened scrutiny at the airport, it‘s not the end of the world. And the problem that you have with a lot of the civil liberties Chicken Littles is that they liken every homeland security measure that the Bush administration has taken or attempted to take to the Japanese American “internment”—quote, unquote.
And if I do anything with this book, I want to get that invokement, that invocation of the internment card off the table.
BUCHANAN: Do you think the professional grievance committees are whining too much and that they are unjustified in their statements that Muslim Americans are being singled out, harassed and occasionally mistreated?
MALKIN: Yes, actually, I do.
And if you want to talk about the government singling out based on race, let‘s talk about liberal hypocrisy. And I point this out in my book. You‘ve got all these people from “The New York Times” editorial board and chaise lounge generals like Maureen Dowd and the ACLU that jump all over the FBI when they don‘t do profiling and then jump all over them when they do.
And I‘ll give you a specific example, Kenneth Williams, the Phoenix FBI agent who recommended that there be profiling of Arab and Muslim flight students in his memo. The FBI admitted after September 11 that it didn‘t undertake his recommendation because it was afraid that it might be accused of discrimination. Who was the first to say, oh, the FBI was so timid; why didn‘t it profile?
It was Maureen Dowd. Now, why do you think, why do you think the FBI was so timid? Hmm, I wonder. Could it be all those “New York Times” editorials blaming the administration for discriminating against minorities? I wonder.
BUCHANAN: Is the FBI, is the Bush administration being too timid in the war on terror? Has it been mildly paralyzed by being threatened with accusations of xenophobe, nativist and all this other stuff? And what should the White House and the administration and the FBI be doing that they‘re not doing now?
MALKIN: Well, I think they are being too timid.
And I think they have bent over backwards, contrary to what you‘ll here from the ACLU and all these grievance mongers. They‘ve bent over backwards to be sensitive. And I think that they do it at our peril. I think they do it at America‘s peril, even something is limited as the FBI asking Muslim Americans to volunteer for interviews, to volunteer information that they might know about terrorism.
There was an article in “The Seattle Times” today about Jim McDermott, the congressional in Washington, wants to have a congressional investigation because the FBI might have asked Muslims if they could possibly come in for interviews.
And then there‘s, if the Bush administration wants to do one single concrete thing, it could get rid of Norm Mineta, who embodies this problem. He is somebody who experienced the evacuation during World War II. He was evacuated to a camp in Heart Mountain, Wyoming. And it has clouded, it has absolutely clouded his view of what needs to be done now.
BUCHANAN: All right, let me ask you—I read a column of yours and maybe you can explain to folks—and I even quoted it, Michelle, today in my own. You said, “President Bush says family values do not stop at the Rio Grande.” And you added, “And he should add, neither to Islamofascists.”
What did you mean by that?
MALKIN: What I mean by that is, one of the big blind of the Bush administration is the Southern border and the thousands of Middle Easterners who are flowing through that border and possibly who are involved in terrorist activity. At least that‘s what we‘re hearing from some congressmen down on the border, the Texas border.
And I think that Bush‘s support of amnesty and his refusal to enforce immigration laws consistently again endangers us. And I think it‘s a theme that ties back into my book. We absolutely have to selectively enforce immigration laws at times. And if that means deporting illegal aliens who come from terror-sponsoring or terror-harboring nations, so be it. And if it hurts some feelings, fine. We have to put homeland security over hurt feelings. We have to put national interests over political correctness. And we‘re still not doing it.
BUCHANAN: All right, well, let me ask you this. You‘re an expert on immigration.
Jerry Seper—I‘m sure you saw “The Washington Times”‘ three-part article. There are 400,000 individuals who have been—they‘re called absconders that have been ordered deported from the United States; 80,000 of them are criminal felons who have been charged and convicted of murder, rape, robbery. They have been ordered deported. They have disappeared in the population.
And according to Seper, we‘ve only got a couple hundred people searching for these 80,000 cells, among them a significant number of child molesters. Is there a blind spot in homeland security?
MALKIN: Of course there is.
And it starts with detention and deportation of illegal aliens. And, sadly—and you know this, Pat—there are only 2,000 interior enforcement agents to actually chase after illegal aliens, whether it‘s people who have crossed the border illegally, overstayed their visas illegally or absconded from deportation orders, as you mentioned.
And it‘s alarming because it‘s not just convicted criminals. It‘s not just child molesters. But we‘re also talking about 6,000 illegal aliens from the Middle East who have absconded from these orders who could be terrorists. We can‘t be letting them go. And that‘s exactly what we‘re doing and there‘s nobody to chase them down.
BUCHANAN: Michelle, thank you very much. And good luck with your book.
MALKIN: Thanks, Pat.
BUCHANAN: All right, should immigrants who are not citizens of the United States be allowed to vote in American elections? According to “The New York Times” today, there‘s a movement in major American cities, from D.C. to San Francisco, to let immigrants vote as soon as they settle in America. Is this a progressive idea?
Here to debate it are Representative Tom Tancredo of Colorado and Ron Hayduk, a professor of political science at Manhattan Community College. He‘s co-director of the Immigration Voting Project.
Professor Hayduk, let me start with you.
Tell the American people why it‘s a good idea to have immigrants in the United States who are not American citizens vote to choose America‘s leaders?
RON HAYDUK, CO-DIRECTOR, IMMIGRANT VOTING PROJECT: Well, 228 years ago, this country was founded on the basic idea of no taxation without representation and government should rest on the consent of the governed.
That basic idea, the founding basis of this country, the core ideas of democracy are behind this movement today, that immigrants who pay taxes, who send their kids to school, who serve in every sector of the economy, who serve in the military and die fighting for in this country should have some say over their tax money that they send.
BUCHANAN: Let me follow that up with asking you this.
BUCHANAN: In some states, there‘s—as a matter of fact, a number of them are given driver‘s licenses to illegal aliens. They provided subsidies for illegal aliens or their children to go to colleges and universities in state, the same benefits of people living in state. Do you think the eight million to 14 million illegal aliens living in the United States paying taxes should also be allowed to vote in these elections?
HAYDUK: Well, yes.
I think that any immigrant who‘s a hard-working, taxpaying member of a society has a stake in that community and should have a voice. Otherwise, the politicians who make policies that affect their daily lives can ignore them. And this idea of having immigrants vote in local elections is an old idea. It goes back to the founding of the country.
HAYDUK: From the founding until 1926, 22 states in federal territories allowed immigrants to vote in local, state and even federal elections.
BUCHANAN: Why don‘t you hold right there?
Don‘t go away, folks. We‘re going to have much more in this debate ahead. We‘re going to hear from Tom Tancredo.
Plus, 30 years ago, President Richard Milhous Nixon resigned from office. His last White House chief of staff, General Alexander Haig, will be here to talk about remembrances of his former boss.
You‘re watching SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY on MSNBC.
BUCHANAN: Should illegal immigrants be allowed to vote? More on that heated debate in just a minute.
But, first, let‘s get the latest headlines from the MSNBC News Desk.
ANNOUNCER: From the press room, to the courtroom, to the halls of Congress, Joe Scarborough has seen it all. Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.
BUCHANAN: Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY. I‘m Pat Buchanan, in for Joe tonight.
We‘re with Professor Ron Hayduk, the co-director of Immigration Voting Project, and Congressman Tom Tancredo.
Congressman Tancredo, let me read you something, the advocate‘s case, the call to revolution, which makes their case and was what we heard from the professor a minute ago—quote—“Permanent residents are paying taxes and they are fighting and dying for the United States as soldiers in Iraq, while lacking a voice in local government.” They describe the ban on immigrant voting as akin to the kind of taxation without representation that was a major cause of the American Revolution.
Do they have a point?
REP. TOM TANCREDO ®, COLORADO: Pat, the amazing thing about this debate, the absolutely incredible thing about this debate is that there are people out like Professor Hayduk who go, well, sure, absolutely, we should let people—even people who are here illegally vote in our elections, because, of course, in Professor Hayduk‘s point and from his point of view and those of the open borders crowd, there is nothing unique about citizenship, about the concept of or the reality of citizenship.
What does it mean? It‘s insignificant. We are all simply residents. We are residents of a place on the planet. The fact that we are confined by this boundary we call the United States of America is really irrelevant and sort of anachronistic. And so, therefore, we have to dissolve, we have to eliminate anything that is significant, anything that is unique to the concept of citizenship.
If you‘re here even illegally, as Professor Hayduk says, even illegally here, breaking our laws to come into the country, you should be allowed to vote. You should also, of course, I‘m assuming he would agree, be allowed to have your children educated at our expense, send your children on to university at the taxpayers‘ expense, social service benefits, get all the benefits, but get every single benefit that a person who calls himself a citizen should get.
TANCREDO: You should do that because you‘re here illegally. Baloney.
There‘s a difference between a citizen and a noncitizen.
BUCHANAN: Why, Congressman, in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, other cities—I happen to agree with you that it means something to be an American. But, in all these different cities, this movement is on the move. It is going. And lots of Americans say, well, they pay sales taxes. They pay income taxes. Why shouldn‘t they vote?
Are we losing the battle or what?
TANCREDO: Well, Pat, I don‘t know whether things are going our way or theirs. Sometimes I think we are. The momentum is on our side in terms of trying to establish the concept of borders being meaningful, America being a unique place on the planet. And sometimes I‘m worried about it.
But, of course, this whole idea of, they pay taxes, even Professor Hayduk said, well, if they‘re hardworking, taxpaying citizens. Well, what if they‘re not? Does that mean if you‘re here as an illegal immigrant, but on the dole, that you should not be able to vote? Of course not. Of course not.
TANCREDO: Anybody here should be allowed to vote. Is that not what he‘s really saying?
TANCREDO: Regardless of what your situation is.
Who should not be allowed to vote? Who should not be allowed to vote in this country?
BUCHANAN: Professor Hayduk, you want to answer that?
HAYDUK: Well, I would like to make two points. First, the majority of immigrants in this country are in fact legal.
TANCREDO: Who should not be allowed to vote? Who should not be allowed to vote?
HAYDUK: Voting was not originally tied to citizenship. Historically, think about it.
HAYDUK: African-Americans and women were denied the right to vote even though they were citizens.
HAYDUK: Voting is about political power.
BUCHANAN: Professor Hayduk, let me ask you this. But, look, Professor Hayduk, what does it mean to be an American citizen? If you can walk across the Rio Grande, wade across, you then get the rights of American citizenship, to choose American leaders. Even though your allegiance is to the government of Mexico or some other country, some Middle eastern country, some European country, you can also vote to select the leaders of our country?
HAYDUK: Well, we‘re talking about local elections, first of all.
BUCHANAN: Do you think they should be allowed to vote in federal elections?
HAYDUK: Well, historically, immigrants did in fact vote in general elections.
BUCHANAN: Do you think so?
TANCREDO: So you do? He does. Yes, he does.
HAYDUK: I‘m not saying that.
TANCREDO: What are you saying?
HAYDUK: I‘m talking about the campaigns that are currently on the ground right now in Washington, D.C.
HAYDUK: In San Francisco, what they‘re talking about is school board elections, something that we had in New York City for the last 25 years.
HAYDUK: The sky didn‘t fall.
HAYDUK: In fact, what happened was immigrants were much more engaged in the education of their children, much more engaged in political process. It facilitated their incorporation. It facilitated their becoming citizens. It helped actually promote civic engagement and civic...
BUCHANAN: Do you really think the mayor of the capital of the United States of America, Washington, D.C., should be chosen by people who have just arrived here, gotten off the boat or gotten off a plane or those that have just crossed the Rio Grande and made it up to Washington, D.C.? They all should be allowed to choose...
They all should be allowed to choose the mayor of Washington, D.C.?
HAYDUK: Well, that‘s actually not the proposal on the table in Washington, D.C.
BUCHANAN: What do you think?
HAYDUK: But what‘s the difference between someone that comes from the Dominican Republic or Delaware that goes to Washington, D.C.? They have a stake in.
BUCHANAN: They‘re Americans. They‘re Americans. Does that mean anything?
HAYDUK: They‘re coming from other countries. Everyone in the United States, if you‘re not a Native American, came from somewhere else. Historically, you were an immigrant. We‘re a nation of immigrants. We pride ourselves on that.
TANCREDO: Pat, forget about it. You‘re not going to get this guy to admit what he is, what he believes.
HAYDUK: What I believe is in basic democracy.
TANCREDO: No. Listen, we‘ve tried 100 ways to get you to say what you think. And you always keep talking. You always keep trying to obfuscate.
The reality is this. There are people, Professor Hayduk being one, who believe that there is nothing unique about the concept of citizenship. It does not matter.
HAYDUK: That‘s not true.
TANCREDO: We are just simply people on the planet inhabiting this
space and therefore we are eligible
HAYDUK: But we‘re talking about local elections.
BUCHANAN: Hayduk, we are trying to figure out what you think.
Professor Hayduk, do you believe, for example, that we are all basically
citizens of the world? If Americans go to France, they vote in French
elections and Frenchmen come here, they vote in American
HAYDUK: I‘m glad that you raised the international question.
BUCHANAN: I mean, are you a globalist?
HAYDUK: Well, globally...
HAYDUK: ... 23 countries in the world permit residents to vote in local elections.
BUCHANAN: What do you think? What do you think?
HAYDUK: What do I think? I think it‘s a logical policy. It‘s a basic fundamental principle.
BUCHANAN: You are a citizen of the world. Tancredo and I are citizens of the world.
HAYDUK: I‘m a democrat with a small D, right?
BUCHANAN: We‘re limited. Tancredo and I only have one country.
We‘re limited people. We only have one country.
BUCHANAN: But you think folks should come from abroad and vote in the United States of America?
HAYDUK: People do come from abroad. They become citizens. They vote.
TANCREDO: No, you‘re saying they don‘t have to.
HAYDUK: This is a proposal to allow people to vote in local elections before then. Do you think how long it takes to become a citizen? On average, 10 years.
BUCHANAN: What‘s wrong with that?
HAYDUK: In the meantime, these folks send their children to school.
They pay taxes in every sector of the economy.
BUCHANAN: You think they ought to walk across the border and become citizens?
HAYDUK: Why shouldn‘t they have a say about how their taxes are spent? It‘s un-American. It‘s un-democratic.
BUCHANAN: I‘m sorry, Tom. We‘re going to have to hold it right there.
BUCHANAN: I‘ve got my old friend Al Haig coming up here talking about 30 years of Watergate.
TANCREDO: All right.
BUCHANAN: OK, Representative Tom Tancredo, Ron Hayduk, Professor, thank you both for being here.
Coming up, as I mentioned, today marks the 30th anniversary of President Nixon‘s resignation. General Alexander Haig served as his chief of staff during the Watergate scandal and joins me right after this break.
So don‘t go away.
ANNOUNCER: Tonight‘s SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY challenge: Who was the target of the Watergate break-in? Was it, A, Tip O‘Neill, B, George McGovern, or, C, Lawrence O‘Brien? The answer coming up.
ANNOUNCER: In tonight‘s SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY challenge, we asked: Who was the target of the Watergate break-in? The answer is C. Burglars broke into and attempted to wiretap the office of DNC Chairman Lawrence O‘Brien.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARD NIXON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Therefore, I shall resign the presidency effective at noon tomorrow. Vice President Ford will be sworn in as president at that hour in this office. By taking this action, I hope that I will have hastened the start of that process of healing, which is so desperately needed in America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BUCHANAN: Thirty years ago today, Richard M. Nixon, facing certain impeachment, resigned the presidency of the United States.
Joining me now, my good friend and White House chief of staff during the Watergate scandal that brought down a president, General Alexander Haig.
Al, it‘s been 30 years and I guess four days since we were up there at Camp David and found the so-called smoking gun tape. What are your thoughts? Just let me generally—I know you‘re out in—I guess you‘re out in Nevada. What are your thoughts on the 30th anniversary of the departure of our old friend Richard Nixon?
ALEXANDER HAIG, FORMER NIXON CHIEF OF STAFF: Well, frankly, I thought that historians in more recent times would have been kinder to him, because of the seven presidents, or six, you could say that—four who called me by my first name for whom I worked—he was certainly a towering figure among those very fine men.
And he brought about changes historically that we‘re still celebrating, like the successful outcome of the Cold War, through his initiative with the People‘s Republic of China. We‘re still reaping the dividends of that. And today, Asia is a reasonably peaceful place where there‘s structure and direction. And I hope we‘re going to improve that.
BUCHANAN: All right, Al, there‘s no question but that the president‘s opening to China, the trip in 1972, is considered historic, one of Nixon‘s great achievements. On the other hand, the detente with the Soviet Union was the subject of criticism by Governor Reagan in 1976 and during the late 1970s. And when you were secretary of state under President Reagan, you seemed to have a much more confrontational approach with the Soviets than Richard Nixon did.
Was detente a success or a failure?
HAIG: Well, I think it‘s a bum rap to suggest that detente was a single course of action.
What President Nixon did in a number of instances that I participated in, such as the Cienfuegos submarine pens, the Yom Kippur War, where the Soviets placed airborne troops in the Sinai and President Nixon stared them down by raising our nuclear alert, what he did was establish credibility with the Soviet leaders that the United States meant business, and the bombing in Vietnam of Hanoi and Haiphong the mining of the ports in December, which achieved at least a bow towards peace.
It was the American Congress that stripped that peace agreement of any of its veracity by inflicting a bombing halt on the region, by cutting off our help to the South Vietnamese.
BUCHANAN: Let me ask you that directly. There‘s no doubt that, seven months after Watergate, South Vietnam fell and 17, 18 million people fell to horrific tyranny. The holocaust in Cambodia, where one in seven Cambodians died began.
Now, in your judgment, would Nixon—had it not been for the harassment and what was going on in Watergate, would he have been able to save South Vietnam and Cambodia?
HAIG: It‘s my belief he would, because he had already established the credibility that almost 10 years of involvement squandered.
And it started out, as you know, with a Democratic president and followed by another Democratic president. And Richard Nixon inherited the mess of 550,000 American troops in the South and the inhibiting attitude of a Congress that would never support the kind of action that would have brought this thing to a successful conclusion.
BUCHANAN: All right, let me ask you this. John Kerry says that Vietnam was Nixon‘s war.
HAIG: Well, you know, that‘s another Kerryism, flip-flop six.
Here‘s a guy that thinks he was a hero and came home and acted like a traitor. That‘s the problem with this fellow. You never know where he stands on anything. And that‘s something we better face up to as a nation than before this next election.
BUCHANAN: All right, Al Haig, always candid.
We will be back, more with General Alexander Haig now, who was the supreme allied commander in Europe, secretary of state. But for purposes of this conversation, he was the last chief of staff of President Richard Nixon.
We‘ll be back after this short break.
BUCHANAN: A new book Bush Vietnam veterans say John Kerry is unfit to be commander in chief. Tomorrow night, its author will be here to tell us why—John O‘Neill tomorrow night on SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.
Stay tuned for more with General Alexander Haig straight ahead.
BUCHANAN: We‘re back with General Alexander Haig on the 30th anniversary of President Nixon‘s resignation.
Al Haig, they talk about hatred of Bush, but the hatred of Nixon back in those 18 months and the revelry and rejoicing in his political ruin were almost, to some of us, disgusting.
Let me ask you something. Looking back, when you were chief of staff in those years, is there something you think President Nixon might have done, follow Connally‘s advice and burn the tapes and tell the Congress, impeach and be damned, something that might have saved his presidency and frankly, might have saved Vietnam?
HAIG: Well, I think, Pat, the most important thing is to bear in mind what was happening in this country.
The country was discrediting the extreme left, that it had run its court. The country had just given Richard Nixon the largest victory in a presidential campaign in our history, 49 out of 50 states. And he represented anti-communism. He represented conservative fiscal policies. And he of course was the archenemy of the Democratic left.
And so I don‘t think there was anything he could have done to placate that kind of animosity. And I think Mr. Bush is experiencing the same kinds of problems today.
BUCHANAN: All right, to what extent do you think that—the president made mistakes, clearly, during the Watergate affair early on in June of 1972. To what extent were it his mistakes and to what extent was he brought down by his enemies?
HAIG: Well, I think you could certainly credit a mistake by not being so loyal to those who got him in the mess he was in. That was his problem. He was too loyal.
He should have said, look, I fired this guy and that guy. They were wrong. It happened on my watch. I‘m responsible. Now let‘s get on with running the country. But somehow, he believed, either by advice or his own instincts, that he could weather this thing. And it was not a weatherable crisis if the facts be known.
Secondly, I urged him to get Bennett Williams, the Democratic lawyer of “The Washington Post,” to defend him, because I knew enough about Bennett Williams to know that he took his oath very seriously and he would
have defended our president and probably protected him from the fate that
BUCHANAN: Al Haig, thanks very much for joining us.
OK, that`s it for SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, folks. Tomorrow night, we`ll be talking to John O`Neill, who took command of John Kerry`s swift boat in Vietnam back in `69. He says Kerry lied.
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