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updated 8/11/2004 9:52:25 AM ET 2004-08-11T13:52:25

Guest: John Kobylt, Ken Chiampou, Jeh Johnson, Ted Sampley, John O‘Neill

PAT BUCHANAN, GUEST HOST:  Is John Kerry unfit for command?  That‘s what John O‘Neill says. He is the Naval officer who took over command of Kerry‘s swift boat in Vietnam.  His new book claims Kerry is no war hero at all, that he didn‘t deserve his Purple Hearts, Bronze Star or Silver Star, and that he committed acts bordering on treason in wartime.  John O‘Neill is here to tell all for his first interview on MSNBC. 

And later, two top-rated L.A. radio talk show hosts are targeting the Republican Party in California.  They claim the party of Lincoln has gone soft on illegal immigration, so they and their listeners are planning a political human sacrifice of a Republican congressman.  And they are here tonight to tell us about it. 

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, filling in for Joe Scarborough. 

My first guest tonight took over command of John Kerry‘s swift boat after Kerry‘s departure from Vietnam.  He has an explosive new book that says John Kerry was not fit for command as a Naval officer in Vietnam, let alone as commander in chief of the United States. 

John O‘Neill is the author of “Unfit For Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry.”

John O‘Neill, welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  And thanks for joining us. 

JOHN O‘NEILL, SWIFT BOAT VETERANS FOR TRUTH:  Thank you very much, Pat.  It‘s a pleasure to be on the show. 

BUCHANAN:  Let me ask you, John O‘Neill, in your book, my understanding is that there is not one individual who was in John Kerry‘s swift boat, the one he commanded, who has come out against him.  Is that true?  And if it is true, why do folks who did not serve under Kerry know him better than his own men? 

O‘NEILL:  Well, first, Pat, that is not quite accurate. 

Steve Gardner was the gunner on Kerry‘s boat.  He was actually the guy who served the longest as an enlisted guy under Kerry on Kerry‘s boat.  He has joined Swift Boat Veterans For Truth.  And he is extensively quoted in connection with this book.  It is true that more people on Kerry‘s boat who served as enlisted men under him are in favor of him than are opposed to him. 

In contrast, in the unit as a whole, a large majority of the enlisted men have joined our organization, almost all of the officers who were John Kerry‘s peers, 17 out of the 23 of them have joined in condemning John Kerry.  Why do they know John Kerry?  Because these were little boats, Pat.  This is not aircraft carriers.  These were little boats that operated in groups of two to six.  Everybody bunked together.  Everybody lived together. 

The officers who served with him actually saw him for a much longer length of time than the enlisted people who were with him. 

BUCHANAN:  All right.  But if the 60 individuals you mention and you mention in your book are telling the truth, are the boys in the swift boat who served under Kerry, are all of them but one not telling truth when they say their commander was a hero? 

O‘NEILL:  I think that, if you talk—for example, Pat, let‘s take Christmas in Cambodia, Kerry‘s lie that he spent Christmas of 1968 in Cambodia.

I believe that you will find that the men on his boat will also tell you he was lying when he said he spent Christmas in Cambodia.  So I do not think it‘s a situation—I do think generally they support him.  But I don‘t think they will support him in some of his lies.  Where they go beyond that, people will have to ask the questions. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, well, let me ask, Jim Rassmann, who had a piece in “The Wall Street Journal,” I found it, I will say this, very compelling today.  And I wasn‘t want to read a pretty long excerpt from it about what he says about how John Kerry saved his life. 

Quote—he said: “When I surfaced in the water, all the swift boats had left and I was alone taking fire from both banks.  To avoid the incoming fire, I repeatedly swam under water as long as I could hold my breath.  Attempting to make it to the north bank of the river, I thought I would die right there.  Kerry‘s boat ran up to me in the water, bow on.  And I was able to climb on a cargo net to the lip of the deck.  But because I was nearly upside down, I couldn‘t make it over the edge of the deck.

“This left me hanging out in the open, perfect target.  John, already wounded by the explosion that threw me off his boat, came onto the bow, exposing himself to fire directed at us from the jungle, and he pulled me aboard.  For that, Kerry was awarded a Bronze Star.”

Why shouldn‘t he get a Bronze Star for that?  

O‘NEILL:  It‘s not what happened, Pat.

Let me try and explain, because Rassmann‘s story is that an explosion occurred under PCF 3, that all the swift boats fled and Kerry came back for him.  What actually happened, Pat, was that an explosion lifted PCF 3 out of the water.  It threw the crew of PCF 3, at least three of them, into the water and the boat was disabled.  It couldn‘t flee, Pat.  And all of our boats gathered around PCF 3, not far from Rassmann, within 25 or 30 yards, except for John Kerry.  He fled, Pat. 

Rassmann is right about that.  John Kerry fled.  And he came back and did pick up Rassmann shortly before the other boats picked him up.  Our boats stayed.  They did not flee.  And that is not the truth for Rassmann to say that.  We had only one guy in our unit who would flee.  That‘s John Kerry.  Otherwise, I wouldn‘t be here tonight.  I wouldn‘t be alive tonight if our guys fled. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, let me ask you, do the fellows—I can understand Rassmann.  Look, if you pull me out of the water and I‘m going under or I‘m going to wind up on the bank and be executed, I would feel an enormous, permanent lifetime debt of gratitude to Kerry.  That‘s understandable. 

Do the boys and the fellows in the boat with Kerry, do not—I understand there is a man named Larry Thurlow, is there not?

O‘NEILL:  Larry Thurlow was the hero of that day, not John Kerry, Pat.

BUCHANAN:  All right, tell us what Thurlow did and why the fellows in Kerry‘s boat disagree with Thurlow? 

O‘NEILL:  Larry Thurlow and others, Jack Chenoweth, were officers immediately behind the 3 boat and immediately alongside Kerry‘s boat. 

When the 3 boat was blown out of the water and the sailors blown into the water, Jack Chenoweth went and began picking up the sailors.  Kerry fled.  They stayed.  They could have been killed that day if there was fire.  But there was no fire.  Chenoweth jumped op the 3 boat.  Jack Chenoweth brought it under control.  He saved the people that were dazed on the 3 boat. 

Kerry was nowhere to be seen.  No one knew that Kerry had dropped Rassmann in the water.  No one knew why he had fled.  Kerry had came back.  And it is true that Kerry picked up Rassmann shortly before he was picked up by Jack Chenoweth.  But the crewmen on Jack Chenoweth‘s boat and Jack Chenoweth himself estimated that they were 10 yards from Rassmann picking him up when Kerry came to pick him up. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, John, but, look, this raises a question.  Why would this fellow, Thurlow and Jack Chenoweth and these fellows—and Jack Thurlow is apparently a real hero who grabbed that sinking boat, if you will, why did they sit still while Kerry goes and picks up all these medals? 

O‘NEILL:  Because—oh, they didn‘t know. 

What actually happened, Pat, was they actually looked and they saw the advertisement even that Kerry had in January and February and they thought it was some other incident.  It was so completely different than what they were involved in, they thought it had to be something else.  When they learned that it was related to the incident where the 3 boat was mined, they were shocked.  They were just sickened, because the things were portraying them as fleeing and they were the guys that stayed. 

And it portrayed Kerry as the hero, when he was the guy that fled.  It turned the world upside down.  That‘s why they have all come forward one at a time, appeared on television and told their story.  It‘s just the world turned upside down. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, let‘s talk about the Purple Hearts. 

Apparently, one of these Purple Hearts, Kerry—what, is he fired a rocket-propelled grenade or something like that at rocks and it came and cut him briefly.  And on another occasion, the allegation is that he fired grenades into a pile of rice that had been set aside for the Viet Cong and that‘s how he was injured.

And, again, you get down to the question of how could Kerry file for these Purple Hearts or receive these, return to his unit without having the unit get up and rebel if they are fraudulent? 

O‘NEILL:  Well, if we take the first Purple Heart, that‘s the one where he actually fired an M-79 round.  He got a tiny piece from his own round.  There was no hostile fire.  He went in to see the division commander.  The division commander laughed at him and threw him out and said, you‘re not going to get this. 

Unknown to be anyone, three months later, after everyone who knew about it had left Vietnam, Kerry somehow got a Purple Heart, when the facts were no longer known.  The third Purple Heart is the deal where he threw a grenade into rice.  He caught some rice in his butt.  He then attempted to attribute it to the incident involving the 3 boat and thereby left Vietnam.  To tell you the truth, they didn‘t care.  They were happy to see him go. 

No one knew what he was pulling off.  But people believed his reports and his peers who were on the scene had no idea what was happening. 

BUCHANAN:  Well, here is an incident that I have studied separately, before your book came out, and I was going to write on it, because it was an attack on my president, Richard Nixon.  And this is where Kerry talks about how he was—Nixon said we‘re not in Cambodia, or weren‘t in Cambodia before the incursion.

And Kerry says—this is United States Senator Kerry—“ I remember Christmas of 1968 sitting on a gunboat in Cambodia.  I remember what it was like to be shot at by the Vietnamese and Khmer Rouge and Cambodians, and have the president of the United States telling the American people that I was not there, the troops were not in Cambodia.  I have that memory which is seared—seared—in me.”

Now, it can‘t be very well seared, since, in 1968, Richard Nixon wasn‘t even president of the United States.  And, secondly, of course, how can you know it was Vietnamese, Khmer Rouge and Cambodia, which ones were firing at you, or all three, unless they put flags up on the riverbank? 

O‘NEILL:  This is a total and complete lie.  If John Kerry can prove that he was in Cambodia on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day of 1968, he should go down and sue me tomorrow morning. 

It‘s a lie he‘s told over and over and over again.  It libels everybody that commanded him.  It‘s the typical prototype sort of war crime charge that John Kerry makes that is a lie.  John Kerry was at Sadec.  He was at Sadec from a letter to his parents, according to... 

BUCHANAN:  How far is Sadec from Cambodia? 

O‘NEILL:  Fifty-five miles, 55 miles, Pat.  And he was writing a letter, according to his book, “Tour of Duty,” about how he had visions of sugar plums in his head, literally.  That‘s in the book “Tour of Duty,” from which Cambodia disappears.  It‘s a terrible libel and a lie. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, now, how do you answer this, John?  People say, the reason these fellows are coming out now, the 60 of them, John O‘Neill is coming back, and John Kerry is close to being president of the United States, and their bitterness is not over the fact that John Kerry served honorably and bravely and heroically in Vietnam, but when he came home, he slandered and defecated upon their service by calling them a bunch of war criminals, Genghis Khan, rapists, murderers, and they are understandably bitter and they are understandably angry, but that does not justify them making these charges about what he did do honorably?

O‘NEILL:  The truth of it is, Pat, first, without question, the people in our unit are appalled at John Kerry‘s war crimes charges, which he has now claiming were a bit exaggerated and a lie. 

They struck at the heart of everyone in our unit living and dead.  It‘s something that none of us will ever forget.  And they were repeated in his book, “Tour of Duty.”  It is also true that his service in Vietnam was wildly exaggerated.  Pat, that coronation where he behaved like a peacock at the Democratic Controversy, it made people physically ill in our unit. 

There is a certain truth in the world.  To claim that the guys who saved the 3 boat fled and that he came back is a total perversion of the truth.  You can imagine what the people that actually stayed and could have been shot think about that, and their families.  And so, this is a guy that treats the truth very casually. 

BUCHANAN:  OK, hold on, John O‘Neill. 

If you would like to read more of John O‘Neill‘s best-selling book, which has knocked Bill Clinton‘s right off the top best-seller list, it‘s called “Unfit For Command.”  Just log on to Joe.MSNBC.com.  We have got an exclusive excerpt on there for you to read.  So check it out. 

Stay tuned for more with John O‘Neill when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY comes back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BUCHANAN:  Did John Kerry get a Silver Star for shooting a wounded Viet Cong in the back?  That‘s what John O‘Neill and his men say.  We‘re going to ask him about that when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BUCHANAN:  We‘re back with John O‘Neill, author of “Unfit For Command,” a new book that says John Kerry has repeatedly lied about his service in Vietnam. 

Let‘s take up—John O‘Neill, if you would, you took over the swift boat from John Kerry.  I guess it‘s swift boat PCF-94, is it not? 

O‘NEILL:  That‘s true.  He was there for about a month.  He was in Vietnam, of course, other than in training, for about 3 months.  I was there for a year.  And I was on that boat for about nine or 10 months. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, he not only won 3 Purple Hearts and the Bronze Star for saving Rassmann, who is his friend now and his principal supporter.  He got a Silver Star, which is I think the third highest decoration in the United States military, for charging I guess into a Viet Cong ambush, pointing his boat to the beach, getting off, taking an M-16 and killing an enemy soldier and retrieving a rocket-proposed grenade.  Is that correct? 

O‘NEILL:  He represented, if read the citation, that he had charged, Pat, into a numerically superior force under intense enemy fire. 

The actual facts, when you investigate them, are that these he took his gunboat, heavily armored gunboat, with 30 troops on board.  They were faced by one adversary, a Viet Cong.  The Viet Cong was wounded in the legs.  He sought to escape and Kerry dispatched him, shot him in the back.  I don‘t blame there was anything wrong with Kerry shooting him in the back.  The Viet Cong was not trying to surrender.  But this is not the stuff that medals are of, Pat. 

And background materials provided to the Navy, which caused it to issue in two days a Silver Star without any witness statements, these materials were wrong and the Navy never would have issued a Silver Star had it known the actual facts.

BUCHANAN:  Let me interrupt you right there. 

Look, now, I can see how an individual can get a Purple Heart.  One Purple Heart, he got a scratch.  He wasn‘t bleeding that much and maybe it came back from the rock and cut his arm and it wasn‘t enemy fire.  But we have got five medals here.  And this is a tremendously high decoration.  Don‘t you have to have witnesses before you get a Silver Star?  Don‘t you have testimony from colleagues and comrades who were in battle saying, this was the guy that led us, this was the guy that did it, this was Kerry jumping off that boat, point man, running into the jungle after this character? 

O‘NEILL:  Exactly, Pat.  That is a wonderful point. 

The Silver Star is supposed to require three eyewitness statements and a long certification process.  Kerry‘s is the only Silver Star that we know about where there are no witness statements.  There is no certification process.  It is simply granted two days after the supposed incident.  All other records that would support it are missing.

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  Well, it can‘t be Kerry alone that is responsible.  If this is a fraud, you have got to have higher officers who participated in the fraud, don‘t you? 

O‘NEILL:  No.  They believed what Kerry told them. 

That may sound naive, but we were in combat.  No one expected someone to game a system like this.  He told the superior officers that he had charged into a bunkered complex against a large number of Vietnamese, North Vietnamese.  And they believed him.  That wasn‘t the truth. 

There was one single guy and he shot him in the back.  Those are the actual facts. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, let me ask you, if you have got nobody that

testified, formalized, or have an affidavit for his Silver Star, who are

the people that challenge that Silver Star?  And are there people in the

boat with him who say now he should have gotten it?  And what are the

numbers on both sides of this question

O‘NEILL:  Well, I‘m certain the people on his boat who are in favor of him would say that he should have gotten it, although one of them is now dead.  The fellow who wrote the citation is Captain Elliott.  Captain Elliott indicates he would never have written Kerry up for the Silver Star had he known the actual facts of the single fleeing Viet Cong. 

BUCHANAN:  And he is the one—does Elliott say that Kerry alone came to him and gave him this rendition and he wrote it up on the basis of what Kerry said?  Because you read up in I believe “The Boston Globe” that Elliott has recanted his statement that Kerry doesn‘t deserve it and returned to his original statement that he does. 

O‘NEILL:  Pat, “The Boston Globe” statement that he recanted his position that Kerry didn‘t deserve it is a complete falsehood. 

Commander Elliott even executed another affidavit immediately and gave it to “The Boston Globe.”  What “The Boston Globe” did is try and take the last little sentence out of his affidavit and confuse him.  He has always had the position since learning the actual facts that Kerry never should have gotten that Silver Star.  That is his position today.  It has always been his position.

He issued a press statement within an hour of “The Boston Globe” story saying that the story was completely bogus and wrong. 

BUCHANAN:  Are you saying that “The Boston Globe” is part of this project, if you will, to ensure that Kerry runs in this campaign as a hero and that they are going after and knocking down any challenges to this myth, in your judgment? 

O‘NEILL:  The measures that have occurred here, Pat, are extreme.  We have had three election complaints filed against our little outfit.  Two huge law firms have been retrained to threaten suit against the statements we went on. 

Almost each of us have individually threatened.  The co-author of my book, who is simply an editor and not really any sort of co-author, there are stories in circulation about his e-mails where he made stupid statements in his e-mails.  So every threat that can be brought to bear on us has been brought to bear. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, let me—John, let me ask you about John Kerry‘s testimony before Congress in 1971.  Here‘s what he said. 

He said that the troops, I guess, that he served with, they raped, cut off ears.  They cut off heads.  They taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals.  They cut off limbs.  They blew up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in a fashion reminiscent of Genghis Kahn.  They shot cattle and dogs for funs.  You poisoned food stocks and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam.

A, is any of that true of the people you served with in the swift boats? 

O‘NEILL:  Not at all, Pat.

The truth is, the guys I served with were the greatest people I ever met in my life.  They saved my life.  They would have died rather than kill somebody that was innocent.  And they did die, rather than kill—take a chance of wounding innocent people, several of them in sight of me.  And so that is a total premeditated lie.  It isn‘t simply a bit exaggerated or over the top, as Kerry said.

That‘s a deal that struck right at the heart of people living and dead.  It was a malicious and cruel attempt to gain political publicity. 

BUCHANAN:  Let me say that—you know, I saw Kerry at this convention.  I thought his speech was pretty good.  And he used a line there he used very much in the primaries, which was, we may be a little older, we may be a little grayer, but we are still ready to fight for our country. 

He seemed to be saying there that what we did in Vietnam was fighting for America, whereas, when he came back, he seemed to say it was a dirty, immoral war.  How do you—I‘m going to ask—we have got a panel coming up to reconcile these two.  How do you reconcile them? 

O‘NEILL:  They are 254 of us in our unit.  And we are definitely older and we are definitely grayer.  And you can find a list of all of us on SwiftVets.com.

And we range from vice admirals to seamen.  And we are here to fight for our country, Pat.  And we know about John Kerry.  He would be a terrible commander in chief.  You just couldn‘t tell the kids in the field that this was the new commander in chief.  The American people can‘t do this.  They just can‘t. 

BUCHANAN:  And, John O‘Neill, thank you very much for being here.  I‘m sure we‘re going to be hearing a lot more about you and this book.  And we appreciate you‘re coming on MSNBC and JOE SCARBOROUGH. 

And, remember, folks, you can read an excerpt of “Unfit for Command” on our Web site at Joe.MSNBC.com. 

We‘re going to be back with more SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, more of this debate.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BUCHANAN:  We have been talking to swift boat commander John O‘Neill about his controversial new book, “Unfit For Command,” about John Kerry.  And we‘re going to have a heated debate on that when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns.

But, first, let‘s get the latest headlines from the MSNBC News Desk. 

(NEWS BREAK)

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:  All right, let‘s bring in our panel, Kerry adviser Jeh Johnson, senior MSNBC political analyst Lawrence O‘Donnell, and Ted Sampley of Vietnam Veterans Against John Kerry.

Jeh Johnson, let me start with you, if I may. 

Tell me first where John O‘Neill was precisely dead wrong in what he said.

JEH JOHNSON, KERRY CAMPAIGN ADVISER:  Well, first, let‘s start with March 13, 1969.  That‘s the Jim Rassmann incident. 

Jim Rassmann is quoted in today‘s “Wall Street Journal.”  He gives a detailed, first-hand account of what happened that day on the river.  You had it exactly right, Pat, at the top of the hour, when you said none of the people who are in this book actually served with John Kerry on a boat who were there in the line of fire with John Kerry.  They are all second-, third-, fourth-hand accounts by people 35 years later. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, but, Jeh, let me interrupt you there. 

I mean, it is true if you are talking about people on the boat with John Kerry.  But these boats were operating together and these fellows were right beside Kerry.  They saw the action.  And there are people who—who knew him, but there are also individuals who were right there when these incidents occurred and saw these incidents. 

What I would like to know is, is John Kerry prepared to sit down with, say, a tough neutral interrogator like, let‘s say Russert on “Meet the Press” for an hour and answer each of these things and knock these dead? 

O‘NEILL:  John Kerry has talked about this in this election, in the 1996 election and I assume in elections past for the last 35 years. 

What we need to focus on are what people like Jim Rassmann have to say in today‘s “Wall Street Journal.”  Jim Rassmann, by the way, is a registered Republican.

BUCHANAN:  I know that.  And a lot of these fellows—some of these are registered Democrats. 

What we‘ve got—and let me take this up with Larry O‘Donnell. 

Larry, what we go got is, look, individuals, all of whom presumably served their country honorably, a lot of them are decorated.  They come back.  They have got Purple Hearts, Silver Stars, Bronze Stars, all of them.  And you have got a vicious conflict going on here about what really happened.  If you argue that John Kerry told the truth, on what grounds would you say these fellows are not telling truth? 

LAWRENCE O‘DONNELL, MSNBC SR. POLITICAL ANALYST:  Well, we really don‘t know anything about them, Pat.

I mean, we have this group of Vietnam veterans.  John Kerry is the target of everything we‘re talking about here.  We know a tremendous amount about him.  He has had a public career for over 30 years.  And so today, we see John O‘Neill reemerging.  And, by the way, Pat, I‘m wondering if you met him in 1971 when he was in the Oval Office with Richard Nixon planning his first criticism of John Kerry. 

There is a great picture that MSNBC News has that I‘ve been looking at with Chuck Colson, President Nixon and John O‘Neill planning his debate then with John Kerry.  And there is another pair of shoes in the frame, Pat.  I can‘t tell if they are your shoes or not.  I don‘t know.

BUCHANAN:  They might have been.  They might have been.

But let me say this.  John O‘Neill has been consistent for 35 years.

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  Hold it. 

Kerry came back and said genocide went on, murder, rape, all this stuff.  He accused Americans.  He is the one that has backed away from that.  And, quite frankly, that statement about him being in Cambodia seems to me, which he made as a senator, Larry, seems to me fraudulent on its face.  How could he know who was shooting at him, whether they are Cambodians, Khmer Rouge, NVA, Viet Cong? 

He said he was five miles inside Cambodia.  There was a boat there to prevent anything that was going in.  He has written later that he was on Christmas writing home at the time.  He is the one that has had the conflicts.  Whatever you said about Mr. O‘Neill, he has said the same thing ever since he came back. 

O‘DONNELL:  Well, like all the political analysts and commentators who have been discussing this, I have never been in combat or in a live-fire situation.  So I have no idea how you tell where the bullets are coming from. 

The question for John O‘Neill is what journalistic standards have you used to produce this big thick book?  And, for example, you talked about George Elliott in the last segment with him.  And you mentioned that George Elliott did retract his story or a portion of his story in “The Boston Globe.”

Well, you can go to George Elliott‘s actual evaluation of Lieutenant Kerry and you can read it from 1969.  This is what he wrote.  This is someone who John O‘Neill now wants to use against John Kerry.  He wrote this, “In combat environment often requiring independent, decisive action, Lieutenant Kerry was unsurpassed.”

He goes on to say that “Lieutenant Kerry emerges as the acknowledged leader in his peer group,” talks about him learning the Vietnamese language.  This person who wrote this report...

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  You have to wonder, what are the journalistic standards that take someone from this report to what they are saying now? 

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  OK, you got it.  Let me respond to that.

What you have to ask here is, who provided Mr. Elliott or Commander Elliott with this, who other than John Kerry?  Secondly, you mentioned peer group.  Why are all the peers who were John Kerry‘s men, young lieutenants, J.G.s, almost to a man, they are violently opposed to this guy? 

TED SAMPLEY, VIETNAM VETERANS AGAINST JOHN KERRY:  Can I make a point here? 

O‘DONNELL:  I just ask you Pat.  I ask you, Pat, and I ask the audience, which form of evidence, journalistic evidence, do you want to use, a report written in December of 1969 by one of his commanding officers who knew John Kerry or what people are saying 33 years later in the heat of a political battle? 

BUCHANAN:  OK.  All right.

Let‘s bring—Ted Sampley, go ahead. 

SAMPLEY:  Well, as far as journalistic standards, all you have got is go do is go back to the year 2000 to “The Boston Globe.”  And you will find that Kerry‘s crew—this is when the first issue of Kerry committing a war crime by shooting a Viet Cong that had already been hit by an M-60 machine gun and then twin 50s, .50-calibers—his crew told a different story back then.  And now they have changed it to fit the way Kerry wants the story go.  So that‘s journalistic standards.  Go there. 

BUCHANAN:  What did they say?

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  Ted, after you were convicted of assault and battery on a Senator McCain staffer and you said that Senator McCain was a member of the KGB, is there anything about that that you would like to retract to show us what standards you want to use today?

SAMPLEY:  If you would like to invite me on this show to talk about

John McCain, let‘s do it.  I can back everything I say about

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  We have to talk about you.  When you come forward to criticize someone else, we then have to talk about you. 

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  You said John McCain was brainwashed and is a “Manchurian Candidate” and is an agent of another government.  That‘s who we now have.  That‘s who we are sharing this broadcast with right now.  You‘ve said those things, haven‘t you?

SAMPLEY:  Let‘s ask about John Kerry in Kansas in 1971 when he participated—or his organization participated in a plot or discussion of a plot to kill U.S. senators.  That was in the past.

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  Ted Sampley, I am familiar with that because I have read and studied that.

(CROSSTALK)

SAMPLEY:  Why did that disappear? 

BUCHANAN:  Well, I don‘t know why it disappeared, quite frankly.  And

what everybody who was there said that Kerry was a moderate in that group

and

SAMPLEY:  He was the leader.  He was the leader and a primary spokesman of Vietnam Veterans Against the War. 

BUCHANAN:  I know he was a leader in that group.  But they said there were some nutballs in there.  And this guy Campbell (ph) was one of them, talking about assassinations.  And if Kerry had done anything, he would have said, no, don‘t do it.  And Kerry resigned from the executive committee of that organization at that convention, my guess is because he probably heard this talk. 

(CROSSTALK)

SAMPLEY:  Did he go to the FBI and talk about this conspiracy?  And if he did not, did he violate the law? 

BUCHANAN:  I think that‘s a good question. 

Larry?

O‘DONNELL:  Listen, Pat, this has been discussed for months.        

And the question was, exactly when did John Kerry leave Vietnam Veterans Against the War?  Was it a couple of months before that meeting?  Was it right after that meeting?  Was he present? 

SAMPLEY:  The FBI says he was there.

(CROSSTALK)

O‘DONNELL:  That‘s right.  There is an FBI report that indicates he was there.  There‘s also—every FBI report says that John Kerry represented absolutely no threat to the United States of America and was the voice of reason in every meeting he was ever in. 

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  All right, let me get Jeh Johnson in here.

I got a final question for you, Jeh.  It‘s this.

JOHNSON:  Yes. 

BUCHANAN:  John Kerry said at the convention—and, again, I thought it was a compelling speech—we‘re a little older, a little grayer, but we still know how to fight for our country. 

If he was fighting for his country in Vietnam, why did he come home, go to Paris, meet with Madame Binh, who was a representative of the Viet Cong, who were the people killing his comrades in Vietnam?  Why did he go meet with the enemy? 

JOHNSON:  Well, you have to remember that 1971 was a defining moment for an entire generation.  John Kerry said what he thought about the war in Vietnam.  He went a number of places to say that.

He had the courage to go fight this war.  He left Yale in 1966 with a lot of choices and chose to put his life on the line for his country and his crewmates.  He was there, unlike a lot of other people who are now second-guessing this.  He was there in the line of fire.  Bill Clinton pointed out that he, the vice president and the president all avoided service in Vietnam.

Not John Kerry.  He was there.  And he was there firsthand, came back and I think is entitled to talk about what he saw in Vietnam and is entitled to be critical of the war effort in Vietnam, in light of what he did. 

BUCHANAN:  OK, Jeh Johnson, we‘re going to leave you with the last word there, although I don‘t think it is going to be the last word in this debate. 

But upcoming, we have got a couple of talk show hosts in Los Angeles who are going to throw a Republican congressman to the wolves because George W. Bush and the Republicans will do nothing to halt the invasion from Mexico.  That issue when we come back.  And we‘ll name the likely congressman to be thrown to the wolves.

ANNOUNCER:  Tonight‘s SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY challenge:  Which country has the highest percentage of foreign-born population?  Is, A, the U.S., B, Canada, or, C, Australia?

The answer after the break.  

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANNOUNCER:  In tonight‘s SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY challenge, we asked: 

Which country has the highest percentage of foreign-born population?  The answer is C.  According to recent statistics, 22 percent of Australia‘s population is foreign-born, compared to only 12 percent of the U.S.  population.

Now back to Pat.

BUCHANAN:  Are you sick and tired of Republicans waffling on this issue of illegal immigration? 

My next two guests took their cause to the airwaves of Southern California.  And they put five Republican congressmen—count them, five - - on the hot seat.  John and Ken are the hosts of the radio show on KFI-AM. 

Gentlemen.

JOHN KOBYLT, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  Hi, Pat. 

BUCHANAN:  How you doing?

KOBYLT:  We‘re fine.

BUCHANAN:  Tell us about this exciting progressive contest and why you have created it.

KOBYLT:  Well, we‘re calling it political human sacrifice.

And we had our listeners vote on the top five out of 13 Republican congressman in Southern California who are, in the words of Arnold Schwarzenegger, girlie men when it comes to fighting illegal immigration.  And it started because, one day back in June, a 12-member Border Patrol team out of Temecula, California, actually rounded up 400 existing illegal aliens, not new ones coming over the border, but ones who had been living and working here. 

Well, our crowd went nuts for it.  And within days, it was stopped.  And it was stopped by a Democratic congressman, Joe Baca, who went into Asa Hutchinson‘s office.  Hutchinson is the No. 2 guy at the Department of Homeland Security.  He‘s in charge of the Border Patrol.  Baca goes into Hutchinson‘s office and he gets it stopped cold. 

KEN CHIAMPOU, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  We were wondering why, with a Republican administration, who Asa Hutchinson reports to, this was done so easily by a Democrat.

So we asked the Congress people to come on and explain.  We didn‘t like the answers we got.  So we put their names out there in a poll, which we‘re calling our summer reality show, for people to vote which five you think should be in our final round.  And then we‘re going to narrow it down to one guy who we are targeting in November. 

BUCHANAN:  All right, well, let me—let‘s go here—look, there is no doubt about it.  The Bush administration has not done its constitutional duty to defend the borders of the United States of America. 

We got hundreds of thousands coming in every year.  They are breaking down there in Douglas, Arizona, now that they got a pretty good job, going in San Diego.  But, look, isn‘t it the administration itself and the White House that is responsible here and George W. Bush, rather than these congressmen? 

KOBYLT:  Where are one of these congressmen going to take on Bush?  They are representing Southern Californians.  That is who they are representing.  They are not respecting Bush.

And I‘m just tired of the partisan protection that these guys give Bush.  Bush is completely wrong.  He‘s off the map on the illegal immigration issue.  It‘s killing Southern California.  It‘s costing taxpayers $5 billion a year for schooling and for health care and the rest of it.  And enough is enough.  What‘s the point of having Republican congressmen if they can‘t effect change while the Republicans are controlling all levels of government? 

(CROSSTALK)

CHIAMPOU:  We need to start a ripple effect that we‘re going to start here in California by toppling one Congress person.  We think that is going to get their attention.  We‘re looking to get Karl Rove‘s attention, which we heard we already have.  We are looking to put an effect and an impact on the White House through this effort. 

BUCHANAN:  OK.

List the five congressmen that are in the running for the sacrificial lamb. 

KOBYLT:  Well, David Dreier overwhelmingly is No. 1.  He got 52 percent of our online vote out of 13 congressmen.  Chris Cox was second out of Orange County.

And then third was Mary Bono.  And then fourth, Darrell Issa, and fifth, Dana Rohrabacher.  Every one has come on the show except David Dreier.  Dreier is avoiding us.  He used to come on our program all the time.  And now he is going on every other radio program in Southern California, trying to work around us.  But he won‘t come on with us, because his record is indefensible.

He is an open borders guy.  He came on our show a few months back trying to push Bush‘s amnesty program.  And people are on to his number.  And so now he doesn‘t want to face us.  And that‘s only to going to work against him when we do the final voting. 

BUCHANAN:  Well, let me ask you.  Dana Rohrabacher is a friend of mine.  I worked in the Reagan White House with him.  He is fairly hard-line on the illegal immigration issue, isn‘t he? 

CHIAMPOU:  Yes, he was sure shocked when his name came up in the top five.  But keep in mind, in our listening audience, he lives in a district that is pretty close to where a lot of our listeners are.  And a few of them just picked him. 

He came on the show.  And we got into a big fight with him.  And, Pat, one of the reasons we fought with him is, he doesn‘t want California to get the $5 billion it‘s owed in the cost of illegal immigration.  And we really got into a tussle with him over that, because we believe the state deserves its money back. 

KOBYLT:  Yes. 

To me, it‘s an unfunded mandate.  If you‘re going to have an open border policy, then you got to pay the states back who are affected by the illegal immigration.  Rohrabacher and Darrell Issa think otherwise.  So we fought with them, even though generally, they‘re the good guys in this fight.

BUCHANAN:  OK.  All five of these congressmen, to my knowledge, are very popular.  Any one of them would be tough to defeat.  I don‘t know how you fellows are going to do it. 

But you stay there.  We will ask you that when we come back, what are the chances you can take down the great David Dreier in November. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BUCHANAN:  Tomorrow night in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, will the economy bring down Bush 43, just like it did his dad?  We‘ll be discussing that with CNBC‘s Kudlow and Cramer tomorrow night, the economy.

But stay tuned for more SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY right ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BUCHANAN:  We‘re back with the hosts of “The John and Ken Show” on KFI-Am in Southern California. 

John and Ken, you mentioned David Dreier.  Now, I don‘t know the numbers out there, but, seriously, Dreier is a very popular, very powerful figure in the Republican Party, in the Congress.  I think he is chairman, what is it, of the Rules Committee or something like that in the Congress. 

KOBYLT:  Yes.  He is 

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

CHIAMPOU:  You‘re laughing.

KOBYLT:  You‘re laughing.  You are saying, how in the hell do you guys think you are going to pull this off?

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN:  Exactly. 

Well, here is the thing.  First, how are you going to pull it off?  Why are you going to pull it off?  Because I don‘t know any Democrats who take the Tom—or very few Democrats take the Tom Tancredo line. 

(CROSSTALK)

CHIAMPOU:  Well, one thing is, you are assuming David Dreier is going to be the winner of the political human sacrifice.  We don‘t know that yet.

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  The early returns indicated that.  The early returns lead it, yes.

(CROSSTALK)

KOBYLT:  Well, here‘s the thing.

We‘re going after Joe Baca, the Democrat I mentioned earlier who stopped the Border Patrol sweeps.  So we‘re going after one Democrat and one Republican.  And you‘re right.  There aren‘t any Democrats who talk like Tom Tancredo of Colorado.

But the point is, the Republicans don‘t talk like Tancredo either.  We want to send a shockwave, saying, you‘re not going to take Southern California for granted anymore.  You‘re not going to take this illegal alien problem for granted anymore.  And if it means we have to chop off one of these heads, then we‘re going to go and do it. 

Now, here‘s why we think we can do it.  We were a big part of recalling Governor Gray Davis last year.  We were a big force behind Arnold Schwarzenegger.  And two years ago, we got a judge in Orange County out of office.  We got 250,000 of our listeners to vote in for write-in candidates.  This judge had been accused of child molestation and he was still running on the ballot unopposed. 

BUCHANAN:  Look, Arnold, you can get the conservatives to go.  We‘re going to get rid of Gray Davis, great conservatives issue, great in Southern California for your listeners.  Getting rid of a judge who is a child molester, piece of cake. 

David Dreier has got a lot of conservative support, moderate support out there.  He wins big.

(CROSSTALK) 

BUCHANAN:  Who is his opposition? 

CHIAMPOU:  I have got to tell something to you, Pat.  You are involved in political circles, but we‘re talking to people that actually vote in his district.  And I can‘t tell you the hundreds, if not thousands of e-mails we got.  There‘s a lot of anger over David Dreier.  It‘s been building up over the years.

They consider him way too moderate. 

(CROSSTALK)

KOBYLT:  The people, the conservatives Republicans who listen to our show, they get the game.  They get the idea.  We are getting thousands of Republicans writing in to us, saying, go for Dreier. 

BUCHANAN:  OK, let me say this.

If you had, say, a conservative Reform Party candidate, somebody who was tough on illegal immigration, people could go to him.  But you are going to try to make conservatives leave Dreier and go to a liberal Democrat? 

KOBYLT:  Yes. 

CHIAMPOU:  I don‘t know that his opponent is that liberal.  We did interview her.  She‘s not particularly liberal and she definitely has more views coinciding with ours on illegal immigration.  She wants to go after employers, which is something Republicans don‘t do. 

KOBYLT:  Yes.  Republicans never go after the people who create this illegal alien market by providing the jobs.  That is something Dreier would never do, because most of these Republicans are paid off by business interests. 

BUCHANAN:  You got that right.

KOBYLT:  You would be surprised how people get the game.  If you heard them calling in every day and read our e-mails, you would be shocked at the number of conservative Republicans who get it.  We‘re just sacrificing one here.  We‘re not changing the course of the House. 

BUCHANAN:  OK.

(LAUGHTER)

BUCHANAN:  OK, John and Ken, good luck.  Thanks for joining us.  Good night.

KOBYLT:  Thank you. 

CHIAMPOU:  Thank you. 

BUCHANAN:  And thanks for joining us, folks, in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY tonight. 

We‘ll see you tomorrow. 

END   

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