updated 7/6/2005 11:11:14 AM ET 2005-07-06T15:11:14

Guest: Tony Perkins, David Boies, Barry Richard, Linda Allison, Ruben Trappenberg, George Twitty, Robert Bork, Beth Holloway Twitty

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST:  Tonight, breaking news out of Aruba.  Charges could be filed as early as Monday against three men in Natalee Holloway's disappearance.  Tonight's top headline:  Courtroom politics can't stop justice from being done, even in the Natalee Holloway case. 

Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.  No passport required and only common sense allowed. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) 

BETH HOLLOWAY TWITTY, MOTHER OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY:  Natalee deserves to return to her country.  She deserves it.  And everyone knows it, Martin.  Every single person, every single person knows that. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  A gut-wrenching interview with Natalee Holloway's mother, as news breaks, that three teens could finally be charged in Natalee's disappearance and possible murder.  We're in Aruba with the latest on the American girl who's still lost in paradise. 

And Sandra Day O'Connor retires from the United States Supreme Court.  Now it's time to prepare for the political bloodbath that is sure to follow in Washington, D.C.  Tonight, we're going to be talking to a man whose Supreme Court battle launched the era of bad feelings on Capitol Hill, all the way back in 1987. 

Plus, Tom Cruise bashed Brooke Shields for taking medicine.  Now Brooke Shields is fighting back.  We've got all the details in their war of words. 

Plus, another tourist falls prey to a shark attack off of Florida's dangerous coasts. 

ANNOUNCER:  From the press room, to the courtroom, to the halls of Congress, Joe Scarborough has seen it all.  Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.

SCARBOROUGH:  Welcome to the show tonight.  Friends, hope you're getting ready for your Fourth of July weekend and hope you are going to have a safe, happy one. 

But, right now, let's talk about a story that, obviously, not bringing a lot of happiness to friends and relatives of Natalee Holloway in Alabama and Aruba and across this country.  The search for Natalee enters a second month.  And word is coming out tonight that three suspects may be charged as early as Monday. 

Also today, Natalee's parents sat down for a heart-wrenching interview with NBC's Martin Savidge. 

Martin is with us tonight live from Aruba. 

Good evening, Martin.  We're going to get to that interview in a minute. 

But, first, quickly, can you catch us up to date on the latest developments today?  A lot going on down in Aruba. 

MARTIN SAVIDGE, NBC CORRESPONDENT:  Well, you're right, Joe.  There are a lot of things going on. 

Let's talk about Senator Richard Shelby and the letter that he wrote to Condoleezza Rice.  As you may remember, he's demanding that FBI have a more active role in the investigation down here.  He wants the secretary of state to make that quite plain to the Aruban government.  The response from the Aruban government is to say, look, if the U.S. wants to send 100 FBI agents additionally down here, they are welcome to do so, as long as they are assisting in the investigation. 

If the senator wants the FBI to take over the investigation, that's a different matter.  And, no, the Aruban government would not allow that to happen.  There was some searching going on today, a very limited amount.  It was triggered as a result of some information that came in.  The police went out, along with the people from EquuSearch, the volunteers.

They looked at an area around the airport, but did not find anything.  And then you have the Dutch government announcing late this afternoon, it is sending three F-16 fighter aircraft, it says, to assist in the search for Natalee Holloway.  It's not clear how high-performance military aircraft would help, but they should be here probably on Monday. 

And speaking of Monday, that is when that big hearing is going to take place to determine whether or not there is enough evidence to continue holding those three suspects for another 60 days.  There are a lot of people wondering if there is evidence to do that—Joe.

SCARBOROUGH:  Martin, a lot of questions tonight.

Obviously, the Associated Press earlier in the evening reporting that these three young men had actually been arrested for murder from the very beginning of the investigation, the prosecutor saying the only reason the family didn't know that is because they wanted to spare their feelings.  The AP has backed off of that story a little bit.  Now we are hearing possible charges on Monday. 

But the bottom line is, if there is no body and if there is no forensic evidence, how do you keep these three young men in prison?  What are you hearing from Aruban authorities on that issue? 

SAVIDGE:  Well, that is exactly the point.

You know, when you talk to people that are connected to this case and you say, all right, what's going to happen Monday, they will say, well, we hope that the suspects are continuing to be held in custody.  Hope is one thing.  Whether they actually will, many people will stop short of saying that they know for certain the suspects will continue to be held because of the issue we talked about for a number of days, how much evidence is there really against these three suspects. 

And you need a significant amount if you're going to hold them for a significant amount of time, which is the 60 days.  You know, I sat down and talked to Beth Twitty and George Twitty.  That is Natalee Holloway's mom and stepfather.  And the first thing we started talking about was this letter from Richard Shelby, the senator, as to how they think this pressure could help. 

Let's listen. 

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HOLLOWAY TWITTY:  You know, Martin, I think it's just a prime example of showing that not only the frustrations that Natalee's family has had in dealing with this situation, but the frustrations that they are beginning to feel now in the United States.  You know, now they are—after a month, they are seeing and experiencing the same frustrations that we have been experiencing since May 31. 

GEORGE TWITTY, STEPFATHER OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY:  Senator Shelby is pushing this and the United States is pushing this.  And they want to send in more people.  And he basically said, you can send in 100 in here if you want to.  They are welcome in here tomorrow.  But they can't do anymore than they have already done. 

So, I mean, it's almost like a slap in the face.  To me, it's like they are not trying to help us.  It's like they don't want our assistance, you know, so...

(CROSSTALK)

SAVIDGE:  But what would you like to see them do specifically? 

(CROSSTALK)

TWITTY:  I would like to see somebody come in here and get involved in the investigation and—and go back and maybe try to sort out some of the things that have happened, like, the first six or seven days that passed before they even arrested the guys, because there's a lot of stuff in there that's very important. 

SAVIDGE:  And there is grumbling coming from the states of perhaps ineptness on the part of investigators here and even something more, of perhaps a cover-up.  Do you sense that?  Do you feel that? 

HOLLOWAY TWITTY:  Martin, on June 11, I have it documented in a journal that I've been keeping, that I specifically asked, could a cover-up be involved?

And when you think—when you think back on it now, I must have been

·         I must have been on to something and was on to something even earlier than that, but was able to document it in a journal on June 11.  And now, when I think of June 29 and I'm hearing the judge saying that, if there's no body, then there's no evidence, you know, what was transpiring during those initial nine days, Martin?  What was transpiring? 

Who was helping who?  Who was coaching who?  Who was covering their tracks?  You know, it can only now just raise just huge frustration and anger in me now, when I look back on it.  And you know what will be even further, to me, damning is when we find out how well—OK.  We've got a 17-year-old male sitting in jail. 

How—how supported and well-connected is he?  It branches out from the three individuals are tied—they are woven into such a tight braid.  We've got the father.  Now, how much farther does it go from there, Martin?  How much more of a net of involvement is going on with this group of individuals?  That's what my gut feeling is telling me, that it is far more reaching than just this father and these three individuals. 

Now, they had to have additional help, if he's already discussing disposing—or no body?  No body is recovered, there will be no evidence?  I mean, you know, who all was involved in that? 

SAVIDGE:  Are you worried about Monday, Monday, the hearing? 

HOLLOWAY TWITTY:  Oh, absolutely. 

TWITTY:  Absolutely.

HOLLOWAY TWITTY:  I'm sick.  And I will be physically sick for the next three days, because those three individuals, like I said, it's like three cords woven so tightly together in this. 

They—I will be—I will be sick.  And, Martin, the things that we have been through during this ordeal would shock and amaze Americans. 

SAVIDGE:  What is your fear?  What is your nightmare, Beth... 

(CROSSTALK)

HOLLOWAY TWITTY:  My worst nightmare, that these individuals will be let—will walk and we will still not have any answers. 

SAVIDGE:  You think that is a possibility? 

TWITTY:  It's a possibility.

And that scares me, too, because these three kids are predators.  If they let them walk on this island after what Beth and I know, there's a lot of information that we have that we cannot share, because it would jeopardize the investigation.  But if they let them walk, we can share it.  And it would be devastating. 

The United States, the world will be amazed. 

SAVIDGE:  Do you still believe she's alive? 

HOLLOWAY TWITTY:  You know, Martin, I always have my hope that she is. 

I always have my hope. 

But there it goes right there.  We have to demand and expect that we will get her.  That is not an option.  Natalee deserves to return to her country.  She deserves it.  And everyone knows it, Martin.  Every single person, every single person knows that. 

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE:  You know, Joe, as you listen to that interview, especially at the end there, you see the great strength that—that Beth Twitty has.  And yet, at the same time, you see the fragility of it, as it begins to break just at the very end, as the emotion wells up in her. 

And she really does ride a very difficult and very painful emotional edge over these past weeks.  Joe? 

SCARBOROUGH:  And, you know, Martin, she is such a strong woman.  I don't know how she's been able to stay as strong as she has over the past several weeks. 

But I want to ask you, I mean, looking at that interview, it seems to me that this family has completely given up hope that they can trust the Aruban government or the Dutch government.  They seem very embittered by the entire process.  Is that your take? 

SAVIDGE:  Well, I wouldn't say that they have totally given up hope.  I mean, they do believe that there are many great people who are working on their behalf.  They always extol the virtues of the Aruban people, who have been tremendously supportive and part of the strength that they have had to continue to hold up, as the family has. 

They also believe that the prosecutor is probably working her best, Caren Janssen.  But then there are others that they have their doubts about and they worry about whoever the judge may be on Monday and the decision that may be handed down, especially in that decision is to let any of the suspects go. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, Martin Savidge, thank you so much for being with us again tonight, a remarkable interview.  We really appreciate you bringing it to us here on SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY. 

Now, coming up straight ahead, we're going to be talking more about Aruba.  But I've got to tell you, first of all, friends, it is—it is just absolutely, absolutely necessary that the Aruban officials do what's required to make sure that these three young men are held accountable. 

We're going to be talking to Natalee's aunt about that when we come back and get the latest from the family.

And, also, forget about “The War of the Worlds.”  It's the war of words between Tom Cruise and Brooke Shields.  Brooke fires back in a very, very public way.  We'll tell about it when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWS BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  You're looking at images of Natalee's parents attending yesterday's prayer vigil outside of Natalee's hotel.  I'll tell you what.  So many people said they were amazed at the number of total strangers who just showed up to lend support to the family.  And certainly, tonight, that's what the family needs more than anything, support and prayers. 

Let's go back to Aruba right now and bring in Ruben Trappenberg.  He's the spokesperson for the government of Aruba. 

Ruben, thank you so much for being with us.  This is one of these times when we in America need your help in decoding what's going on down there.  Earlier the AP was reporting that the attorney general in Aruba had claimed these young men had already been charged with murder in the case from the earliest days.  Now we understand that's not the case, but they may be charged on Monday.  Can you clear it up for us tonight? 

RUBEN TRAPPENBERG, ARUBAN GOVERNMENT SPOKESPERSON:  Yes, Joe. 

It's—the attorney—it's not the attorney general—it is the chief prosecutor not being careful enough in her wording of the suspicion.  And we have tried to do so from the beginning.  The reasons they were suspected, meaning the murder charge—but, again, you get into these words of charge.  And that means something in the U.S.  It means something different here.  And that is where the difficulty comes in. 

I know that the AP wire had—you know, it was accurate what they were saying.  It's just that, in the semantics, it gets lost.  It's a reasonable suspicion.  That's what they have.  They have a suspicion that these guys did number one, two and three.  And that is what they are being held on.  That is all it is. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Help us through on the Fourth of July hearing on Monday.  These young men are going to go before the judge.  Now, for the judge to say you're going to be formally charged, we're going to be able to hold you here while this investigation continues, what has to be proven? 

TRAPPENBERG:  It is not the judge deciding that they're being charged. 

It is the chief prosecutor, the one that will decide that. 

The judge will look at this point, because there's a 60-day period, at the evidence.  Is there enough evidence to keep holding these guys?  And that's what the judge will determine.  He's flying in from Curacao.  And, again, for these types of case, it is quite normal.  And he's the one who is going to look at if there is enough evidence to keep these guys behind bars. 

SCARBOROUGH:  OK.  I'm sorry.  You had said before that it wasn't going to be a judge.  It was going to be the main prosecutor.  Who makes that determination, the judge or the prosecutor? 

TRAPPENBERG:  The chief prosecutor decides at one point in the case that they're going to be formally charged.  Let's say, well, this week, we're going to charge them on Wednesday.  And that is the point when she he or she has enough evidence.  That's when they formally charge the person. 

The judge just looks at the case and he determines, based on what evidence there is right now, whether it is legal to keep them 60 more days. 

SCARBOROUGH:  A powerful U.S. senator, Richard Shelby from Alabama, Natalee's home state, has been writing letters to the secretary of state, also to Dutch officials and Aruban officials.  He's saying this investigation has reached—quote—“a dead end.”

Do you agree with the senator or do you think that there is still progress that could be made in finding Natalee? 

TRAPPENBERG:  We understand the concern of the senator.  It's just that he doesn't have all the facts. 

The chief prosecutor just said a day ago that, no, their—the investigation has not hit a dead wall.  They are making good progress.  And when there is all this talk about, let's get the FBI more involved, the FBI have been here since day one.  And that is important to note.  And there—maybe he does not have all the details in this case. 

Our prime minister, prime minister spoke with Secretary Condoleezza Rice when he was in Florida at the beginning of June.  He also spoke to Governor Riley.  So, he's been in communication with most of the leaders on and in Alabama to assure them that anything and everything that can be done will be done. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, Ruben Trappenberg, thanks again for being with us tonight.  We appreciate you clearing things up. 

Now, in a minute, I'm going to be bringing in Natalee's aunt, Linda Allison.  And I'm going to be asking her a lot of questions about what has been going on.  And, friends, let me just start by saying right now, all of my sources in Washington, D.C.—I'm sorry.  I've got to bring this up.  All of my sources in Washington, D.C., are telling me that, yes, the FBI officials have been down there from the very beginning.  But they've not been allowed to do anything. 

Senator Shelby's office not commenting to me, but those letters that they sent out, in the letter that they sent—I think their harshest letter actually was sent to the Dutch ambassador, basically saying there has been a stonewalling down in Aruba.  This investigation has been sidetracked from the very beginning.  You all need to help us.  It's not happening yet. 

Let's go right now back down to Aruba.  I want to bring in Linda Allison again. 

Linda, thank you for being with us tonight. 

LINDA ALLISON, AUNT OF NATALEE HOLLOWAY:  Thank you, Joe.  

Obviously, Beth is very concerned about the hearing on Monday.  She believes this government has been involved, possibly involved in a cover-up from the very beginning.  What are your concerns about the Monday hearing? 

ALLISON:  Well, and, again, as you heard this explanation earlier about how the Dutch law works, it makes it very difficult for us to understand, when you bring somebody in for reasonable suspicion and turn them loose three days later—and I'm referencing to Paul van der Sloot—it's really difficult to understand what—what we're dealing with here. 

And again, I explain this—the only way I can understand it is the prosecuting attorney only plays as few cards as possible, so that it doesn't divulge what evidence that they do have. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Linda, let me tell you what it looks like from here in America, from our vantage point.  It actually looks like you have a prosecutor down there who is being fairly aggressive in some ways, but possibly she may be facing roadblocks from other government officials down there. 

Do you sense that?  And do you think the prosecutor's office has been aggressive enough?  You think there are other roadblocks coming from the Aruban government or possibly the Dutch government? 

ALLISON:  Well, you have our family attorney that is giving us advice.

And we actually spoke with her this evening before I came on air, just to kind of understand about the report that the AP had said, that there were formal murder charges being brought at this time against the three suspects.  And, again, those were charges that were initially brought against these three suspects.

Kind of as a shotgun approach, is the only way I can understand that in layman terms, is, you list all the possible charges that there might be out there.  And it could just be kidnapping.  And, as more evidence comes in, then you can eliminate some of the other charges.  So, it's difficult. 

And I think, if there were a lot more communication going on, that we could maybe appreciate and understand what they are doing in the crime—

I'm sorry—in the prosecuting attorney's office.  And we are getting a lot of information from the prime minister's office.  And, again, there's a separation of governmental agencies, if that—if you will refer to them as that. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Right. 

ALLISON:  The prime minister doesn't have any control over the Dutch Marines.  The police investigators, the police department or police authorities have that control. 

And one thing that has bothered me in all this is that, when EquuSearch and the family requested the Dutch Marines to come out and do a joined effort with the EquuSearch, then here, on Thursday, then van Straaten, the police investigator, decides to conduct his own search after three-and-a-half weeks.  So, yes, that is a little frustrating from that perspective. 

SCARBOROUGH:  It has to be very frustrating. 

Final question.  I really don't know how to ask it.  I mean, it seems to me, if I were in your position, your family's position, on one hand, I would want these punks to be charged with murder.  On the other hand, that would be devastating to me, because it would suggest that my daughter was dead.  How are you all handling that?  I mean, on Monday, if they are charged with murder, do you celebrate or do your mourn? 

ALLISON:  Well, I don't know that I want to answer any question at that point.  Either way, it would give resolution. 

We would finally get an end result, because we have been strung out here for 30 days.  But we still have hope.  You know, there's cases in the United States where people are missing for months and then they turn up and we have a happy celebration.  And there is also the sad times. 

So, we are still having hope for Natalee that we're going to find her. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right.  Thank you so much.  We greatly appreciate you being here tonight.  We'll be following this case next week.    

We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWS BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Really big news out of Washington today, as Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor announced her resignation. 

Now, she was appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1981.  And O'Connor was the first woman who sat on the high bench.  She served just shy of 24 years.  And I'll tell you what.  She has been the key swing vote in the Supreme Court for the past several years.  And if you don't understand how much the United States Supreme Court affects your life day in and day out, well, you need to go back to high school, because they are probably a lot more powerful than members of Congress, probably just as powerful as the president of the United States. 

Speaking of the president of the United States, this is what George Bush had to say after learning about her retirement. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  I will be deliberate and thorough in this process.  I have directed my staff, in cooperation with the Department of Justice, to compile information and recommend for my review potential nominees who meet a high standard of legal ability, judgment and integrity and who will faithfully interpret the Constitution and laws of our country. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCARBOROUGH:  Now, in a minute, we're going to be bringing in David Boies and also going to be brining in Barry Richard.  They, of course, argued the landmark decision in 2000 that put George W. Bush into the White House.

But first, I want to talk Tony Perkins.  He's the president of the Family Research Council.

Tony, appreciate you being with us.  The reason I wanted you on tonight is because everybody is talking about Ted Kennedy vs. George Bush.  I'll tell you what.  I think it could be, if George Bush isn't careful, George Bush vs. his own conservative Republicans. 

What happens if, let's say, he puts up an Alberto Gonzales, somebody who is not lined up with you, let's face it, when it comes to Roe v. Wade.  Will there be war between the president and his conservative base? 

TONY PERKINS, PRESIDENT, FAMILY RESEARCH COUNCIL:  Well, Joe, there is great expectation that the president will follow through with his promises to nominate a justice along the lines of a Thomas or a Scalia.  And...

SCARBOROUGH:  OK.  Hold on, Tony.  I want to stop you there. 

Tell our viewers.  It's very instructive.  They need to remember.  What did the president of the United States promise while he was running for along those lines? 

PERKINS:  Well, the president said the type of justice that he would like to see, that he likes, the judicial philosophy, is a Justice Scalia or Thomas.  And those are two of the most conservative members of the court, who understand that the role of the court is not to legislate from the bench.  Rather, that is the job of the Congress.  They simply interpret the laws. 

So, that's what the anticipation is.  And, Joe, remember, there were two main issues that really motivated people to go and vote for the president in November.  One was marriage, which was on the ballot in 11 states across the country.  And two was the fact that there has been this anticipation for nearly a decade of this opportunity to see a philosophical shift of the court. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, Bill Kristol from “The Weekly Standard” predicted O'Connor was going to be stepping down.  And he said it's already a done deal.  The president is going to be appointing Alberto Gonzales, who is currently the attorney general of the United States and a man that does not fit into the Scalia or, let's face it, the Thomas judicial philosophy. 

I mean, so what's going to happen if the president puts somebody like Gonzales out there?  Do conservatives go to war with George Bush? 

PERKINS:  Well, first, let me say, I think Alberto Gonzales makes a good attorney general.  And I think we need to give him time in that office. 

I think, if you—if you nominate a candidate that's less than that standard that the president has embraced, that there's going to be less than enthusiastic support.  And I'm very concerned. 

SCARBOROUGH:  So, you go to war—you go to war over Gonzales, right? 

PERKINS:  I think...

SCARBOROUGH:  James Dobson goes to war over Gonzales. 

PERKINS:  I think what you would hear would be this sound that sounds like slashing the tires of the conservative movement, because this has been a moment in time that has been anticipated for over a decade.

And if there is someone who does that not—that appears along the same lines of an O'Connor, an unknown or someone who has a judicial philosophy that is less than a Scalia or Thomas, it's a problem.  There is no question about it. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Tony, it sounds like war to me. 

Let's bring in also with us two men who faced off in front of the Supreme Court during that controversial presidential vote in 2000, David Boies, who, of course, represented Al Gore, and Barry Richard, who represented George W. Bush. 

You know, I want to start with you, David, because I said at the top I think this battle isn't, in the end, going to be about Ted Kennedy vs.  George Bush.  I think it is going to be George Bush vs. James Dobson.  Conservatives don't like Sandra Day O'Connor on abortion, affirmative action, several other issues.  But Democrats and progressives probably will always blame Sandra Day O'Connor for putting George W. Bush in the White House. 

DAVID BOIES, AUTHOR, “COURTING JUSTICE”:  Right.  Right. 

SCARBOROUGH:  So, what does that mean? 

BOIES:  Well, that is one of the ironies, that, when you're in the middle, you get shot at from both sides. 

And I think that has been Justice O'Connor's strength, as well as one of the things that she's had to go up against.  I think it's remarkable that you would hear conservatives saying that Attorney General Gonzales is not conservative enough for them.  I think it would move the court considerably in a conservative direction to replace Sandra Day O'Connor with the attorney general.  I think if he is not conservative enough, then you are talking about an extremist that's likely to be appointed.  I hope that's not the case. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Barry Richard.

PERKINS:  You would call Justice Scalia and Thomas both extremists? 

BOIES:  No, I wouldn't.  I wouldn't. 

PERKINS:  Well, that's the type of candidate we're looking for.

(CROSSTALK)

BOIES:  Well, I'm not sure. 

I wonder, for example, whether the conservatives would be satisfied with Judge Bork, with what his record was when he was appointed.  I wonder whether the conservatives would have been satisfied with a lot of the judges that have been reported—that have been appointed by Republicans over the years.  I think there is a tendency here to want somebody who is an automaton, who will go on the Supreme Court and vote a particular way. 

The great justices have not had that—have not had that quality. 

PERKINS:  No, we are looking for justices who will not be activists, who will not step into the role of the super-legislature.  I mean, the American people...

BOIES:  But you don't think Attorney General Gonzales would do that, do you?  I mean, you don't think Sandra Day O'Connor did that, do you?

PELOSI:  Well, but, you know, we look back at Souter.  Souter has been an extreme disappointment, nominated by a Republican.  No one anticipated him doing that. 

We would rather someone that we know is in fact along the same judicial philosophy of a Scalia or a Thomas.  We don't want—we don't want to go through this process of guessing.  We want to have someone who simply interprets the law.

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Barry Richard—let me bring you in, Barry Richard.

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  At the end of the day, Barry, does this really all come down to a battle over Roe v. Wade?  When you talk about the two sides getting their troops together, launching commercials, launching political attacks, will abortion end up being—end up being the deciding factor? 

BARRY RICHARD, FORMER COUNSEL FOR GEORGE W. BUSH:  Well, I think it's a major factor in the activism of the two sides. 

It would be pretty interesting if they fought a pitched battle over Roe v. Wade, and then, whomever ends up taking the place of Justice O'Connor and possibly Rehnquist, end up retaining Roe v. Wade for the same reason that Justice O'Connor did, which is out of respect for stare decisis, for the necessity to maintain some uniformity and continuity in the law. 

The other thing that strikes me, by the way, is that while I think it's perfectly fine and part of our process that there are activists on both extreme wings, the liberal and the conservative, the fact is that the great majority of the American people are right smack in the middle and they get nervous any time that any of the three branches get too far to one side or the other.

And one of the great legacies I think of Justice O'Connor is, she maintained the equilibrium that the American people want. 

PERKINS:  Well, I think the American people are very concerned about a court in the last two weeks handing down rulings, one, that says the government can snatch private property, and, two, that comes down against the Ten Commandments. 

I mean, that is clearly not reflective of a majority of Americans. 

RICHARD:  Well, you can't...

(CROSSTALK)

SCARBOROUGH:  David Boies? 

BOIES:  As you know, I disagreed with the private property decision. 

And I also have doubts about the Ten Commandments decision. 

But I think, in each case, Justice O'Connor played a key role.  And I think that it's not whether you agree or disagree with her on any particular case.  Obviously, you know I disagreed with her on Bush v. Gore.  But this is a situation in which she was approaching each of those decisions in a pragmatic way with an open mind. 

And I think the question is not whether somebody is going to be conservative or liberal.  We're going to get a conservative appointed by President Bush.  The question is whether that conservative is going to be a predictable, known vote ahead of time, or whether he or she is going to come to the court with a pragmatic, open mind. 

All right, David Boies, Barry Richard, Tony Perkins, thanks so much for being with us, three of the best minds in America.  And we are going to be with them throughout the summer, as this fight continues. 

Coming up next, one man who is certainly no stranger to the political fighting over the Supreme Court nominations.  He's Judge Robert Bork.  He was nominated by President Reagan in 1987.  And, after a series of contentious hearings, Judge Bork's nomination was, of course, voted down by the Senate 58-42. 

Now, I spoke with Judge Bork earlier in the day and I asked him for his response and his reaction to Sandra Day O'Connor's retirement. 

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROBERT BORK, FORMER SUPREME COURT NOMINEE:  Her legacy—as everybody knows, she was a swing vote, so that she, in many crucial areas, managed to provide a five-person majority.  But it's—her voting pattern was not consistent.  It was hard to figure out sometimes where she was going to come down.  

SCARBOROUGH:  Now, obviously, 1987, your nomination fight really seemed to poison the well of judicial politics.  Of course, that began minutes after President Reagan announced your nomination, Ted Kennedy going to the well of Senate and just making outrageous charges. 

Do you expect this next judicial nomination to be as contentious of a fight as you had to endure in '87 or Clarence Thomas had to endure in 1991? 

BORK:  Yes, I do, if the president follows through on his statement that he wants to get a judge who—as much as he likes Scalia and Thomas, if he wants to get a judge like that, that is judges who try to follow the law, rather than current liberal fads, then there will be a tremendous fight. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, there were so many low points during your battle.  But I was struck by one in particular, where you had Howell Heflin, the former Alabama Senator, going on and on about your beard, while you were going through this carnival, this process.  There was just a bit of a carnival atmosphere. 

BORK:  Yes. 

SCARBOROUGH:  I mean, what—what were your thoughts?  I mean, so many Americans were just staring in disbelief.  I've just got to ask you personally, what was it like? 

BORK:  Well, it was frustrating, because you would try to answer seriously about the law.  And the response was that either that—well, they did a good deal of lying about my record.  But the response was usually, they don't like the results.  Never mind where it came from.  That is, they were more interested in the political result than they were in constitutional reasoning. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You brought up President Bush and said, if President Bush followed through on his promise to nominate somebody that was interested in following the Constitution, there would be a battle. 

BORK:  Oh, yes.

SCARBOROUGH:  Where does Alberto Gonzales—where does Alberto Gonzales fit? 

BORK:  Well, we don't really know. 

I don't think we have a firm enough line on Gonzales yet to really know.  But he's going to worry some—I don't call them strict constructionists.  I call them reasonable constructionists.  He's got some things that worry people who believe in the original understanding of the Constitution. 

But I don't know.  I don't know whether he would—whether they should be worried or not.  I don't know enough about the man.  I don't think any of us knows enough about the man.  But I would be a little surprised if the president nominated him for this one, because I think he may be saving him for the chief justiceship.  You have to have somebody whose views are well-formed and well-known, so that—so that he won't slide to the left once he gets on the court, as many people do. 

But if he chooses a person whose views are well-known and firm, the other side will realize that, too.  And that's why the battle will occur. 

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCARBOROUGH:  Speaking of battles, coming up, a battle between two Hollywood superstars.  Brooke Shields fights back against Tom Cruise and she does it in a very public way in “The New York Times.”  Is it the beginning of a Hollywood revolt against Tom?

And it's happened again, another shark attack in Florida.  We'll have the very latest when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  It's an interview that everybody is still talking about, Tom Cruise on “The Today Show” last week attacking Brooke Shields for daring to speak out about her struggle with postpartum depression. 

Well, in today's “New York Times,” Shields hit back with an op-ed that blistered Cruise' for his comments.  And she wrote—quote—“While Mr.  Cruise says that Mr Lauer and I do not 'understand the history of psychiatry,' I'm going to take a wild guess and say that Mr. Cruise has never suffered from postpartum depression.”

With me now to talk about the latest Hollywood catfight and the fallout for Tom Cruise' is MSNBC editor, entertainment editor, Dana Kennedy. 

Dana, great to have you with us. 

I—you know, I've just got to tell you what my wife's response was.

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  Now, my wife—my wife has never been depressed, despite the fact that she lives with me. 

And yet, she's really angry with Cruise, as are all of her friends.  Obviously, I think most women in America are going to be siding with Brooke Shields on this battle.  How does that shake out for Tom Cruise, and not only his Hollywood career, but his position in Hollywood?  I mean, this guy used to be Hollywood royalty. 

DANA KENNEDY, NBC ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR:  I think it's really significant that Brooke Shields, who is not an A-list star and probably never will be, is not shying away from taking on the man who is arguably still, if not the biggest box office star in the world, right up there. 

This shows that people don't take Tom Cruise as seriously as they have for really the past 20 years.  Brooke Shields was so strong in this “New York Times” op-ed piece.  This is the third time, Joe, that she's fired back at Cruise.  She is not backing down.  And she really took him to task. 

And more than that, she really exposed herself in this piece by saying that she had at one point contemplated taking a bottle of pills.  She thought about jumping out of the window.  She wanted her baby to disappear.  That's how depressed she was. 

And I just think it's significant that she is not shy about taking on Tom Cruise.  I think this is a symbol of perhaps the laughing stock he has become in Hollywood. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, you know, Dana, just like Washington, D.C., Hollywood is a very closed community.  The more powerful you are, the more people are cowards when it comes to taking on someone for making a stupid statement. 

KENNEDY:  No.  It's so true.

SCARBOROUGH:  And I think—I think you make a great point.  I think the fact that Brooke Shields is willing to take on a Tom Cruise shows just how much he's been diminished in the eyes of Hollywood.  So, how does it impact him at the box office? 

KENNEDY:  Well, here is the thing. 

I mean, “War of the Worlds” got pretty strong reviews.  As you know, I'm out there kind of alone.  Me and “The New York Post” did not love this movie.  It got a lot of strong reviews.  It made $21 million domestically when it opened Wednesday, not the biggest opening, by far.  “Star Wars:

Revenge of the Sith” is the box office summer winner. 

But it's doing well.  I'm sure it will do well this weekend.  Will it have legs in—as one of the great Spielberg movies?  I don't really think so. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Yes. 

KENNEDY:  But, still, if Tom Cruise continues to make a lot of money, he's still going to have power and be a box office star.  But I can guarantee you that his outburst in the past and all his whole sort of appearingly staged relationship with Katie Holmes is going to be part of his legend forever.  And it is not a good thing to have be part of your legend. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, Dana, and it just keeps going on and on.  Certainly, people like Spielberg are going to have to think twice before embracing Tom Cruise again in a project. 

I mean, here is a statement that he made to a German publication, talking about UFOs: “Yes, of course.  Are you really so arrogant to believe we are alone in this universe?  Millions of stars, and we're supposed to be the only living creatures?  No.  There are many things out there”—Tom Cruise talking on UFOs.

I mean, this guy is the gift that keeps on giving for late-night comedians. 

(LAUGHTER)

SCARBOROUGH:  But, man, if you're going to invest $100 million or $200 million in a movie, is this really the crackpot you want to invest that money in? 

KENNEDY:  The word is that Paramount, which, of course, has done “War of the Worlds,” is not really happy with him. 

And Steven Spielberg himself gave an interview last week in which he certainly didn't cut down Cruise, but he gave an indication that he wasn't thrilled with all the way the P.R. is going.  And I'm sure he's rather horrified secretly.  And I don't know why Cruise himself isn't wising up and realizing how bad he looks. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Thanks, Dana. 

When we come back, the latest shark attack in Florida. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  Coming up, the latest shark attack, it happened today.  And, tonight, an Austrian tourist is going into surgery in Southwest Florida.

We'll have the story when SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY returns.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCARBOROUGH:  I will tell you what, friends.  As we start this Fourth of July holiday weekend, reports of another shark attack today in Florida. 

A 19-year-old Austrian tourist was attacked earlier today.  And right now, he's going through a surgery in Southwest Florida.  He was up to the water up to his chest when the attack happened off of Boca Grande.  Fortunately, today's victim is expected to make a full recovery. 

The attack happened almost 300 miles south of where 16-year-old Craig Hutto lost his leg near Panama City Beach on Monday.  And last Saturday, of course, the tragic news of 14-year-old Jamie Marie Daigle.  She was killed when she was attacked and bitten by a shark near Destin. 

Friends, if you go out in the water this weekend, obviously, be safe.  It's dangerous unless you're near lifeguards, unless you follow the instructions.  And, so, anyway, be careful. 

And that's all the time we have for tonight.  Have a great weekend. 

If you have something to say to me, you can e-mail me at Joe@MSNBC.com.  We'll see you here Monday for a special edition of 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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