Pat Roberts, Rachel Maddow, Max Kellerman
TUCKER CARLSON, HOST (voice-over): Clues emerge from the rubble. Was this a case of homegrown terrorism?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The majority of those involved in this terrorist act are British-born.
CARLSON: Why Hillary is mad about Bush.
Plus, Mariah's family crisis, a tragic tale of drugs and prostitution.
Hurricane coverage that will really blow you away.
And could one of the president's men be guilty of treasonous behavior?
SCOTT MCCLELLAN, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Now is not the time to talk about it.
CARLSON: Yes, I've got a problem with authority. I'll admit that, in a cheery way. Not everyone likes the bow tie, I'll be honest. But I like the bow tie. I respect people who believe something, even if I don't agree with them. It's my opinion, wrong as it may be.
CARLSON: Welcome to THE SITUATION. I'm Tucker Carlson.
Let's unveil tonight's stack of stories, which includes an LAPD shooting that left a man and his 19-month-old daughter, plus a controversial, but I have to say excellent new marketing campaign from Anheuser-Busch.
But, first, joining me on the panel tonight from Air America Radio, Rachel Maddow and, from MSNBC's “CONNECTED COAST TO COAST,” Monica Crowley.
Thanks, both, for being here.
RACHEL MADDOW, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Tucker,.
CARLSON: Well, for two years, the White House has insisted that president adviser Karl Rove was not involved in the leaking of CIA operative Valerie Plame's name to reporters, a situation that is currently the focus of a federal criminal investigation. President Bush even said he would fire any known leaker within his administration.
Well, there was no comment today from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue about Rove's own lawyer saying his client spoke via an e-mail obtained by “Newsweek” to at least one reporter about Plame's role in the CIA. White House press secretary Scott McClellan got into a heated exchange with NBC's David Gregory when Gregory revisited the subject today.
Here's a portion of it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID GREGORY, NBC WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I mean, this is ridiculous. The notion that you're going to stand before us, after having commented with that level of detail and tell people watching this that somehow you've decided not to talk? You've got a public record out there. Do you stand by your remarks from that podium or not?
SCOTT MCCLELLAN, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: And, again, David, I'm well aware, like you, of what was previously that. And I will be glad to talk about it at the appropriate time. The appropriate time is when the investigation...
GREGORY: (OFF-MIKE) when it's appropriate and when it's inappropriate?
MCCLELLAN: If you'll let me finish.
GREGORY: No, you're not finishing. You're not saying anything.
You stood at that podium and said that Karl Rove was not involved. And now we find out that he spoke about Joseph Wilson's wife. So don't you owe the American public a fuller explanation? Was he involved or was he not? Because contrary to what you told the American people, he did indeed talk about his wife, didn't he?
MCCLELLAN: David, there will be a time to talk about this, but now is not the time to talk about it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CARLSON: Ouch. Scott McClellan having a stiff drink tonight.
CARLSON: Much deserved, to have to try and defend that. Good for David Gregory, by the way.
I think—I think it could be very difficult for Karl Rove to stay on at the White House, simply because the president said, in no uncertain terms, a number of times, anybody in my administration involved in this is out. So, you know, I think it could be over for Karl Rove. That said, this is a nonstory. I mean, at its core, it's a nonstory. Democrats today come out acting like Karl Rove is Julius Rosenberg. You know, he gave away American secrets that were going to imperil the country.
That's a total crock. He didn't. But still, I think, politically, this is huge.
MONICA CROWLEY, CO-HOST, “CONNECTED: COAST TO COAST”: Yes.
CARLSON: You agree, Monica?
CROWLEY: Well, it doesn't involve a matter of national security.
The conversation that Karl Rove had with Matthew Cooper of “TIME” magazine, this was sort of an off-the-cuff comment at the end of a long conversation about other issues that they had been talking about. And what Rove was trying to do in the course of this conversation was point out that Joseph Wilson's credibility was in question.
This is a man who had been highly dishonest with the Senate Intelligence Committee. And that is what he was trying to call attention to, not to that the fact that his wife, who he did not name by name, was working for the CIA. And, also, you know, if this were a big secret, the CIA wouldn't have given Bob Novak the OK to put her name in print.
MADDOW: I think there are two problems with what you just said.
And the first is that the idea that Karl Rove didn't say Valerie Plame's name, but instead Joseph Wilson's wife, that's like not saying Rachel Maddow, but saying the person to the left of Tucker Carlson and saying that's your way out of it.
MADDOW: The other side of this is—and that—I don't think we've talked about this before this at all, but the fact is that the Department of Justice started this investigation because of a CIA referral.
The CIA asked the Department of Justice to investigate this, because they thought that a crime had been committed that needed to be investigated. So, the idea that the CIA wasn't trying to protect Valerie Plame's identity...
CARLSON: Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait.
CARLSON: Well, first of all, that referral came much longer after the column appeared.
MADDOW: Right. Fair enough.
CARLSON: Second, I think it's important to keep in mind the context.
And, again, I said at the outset, I think this is going to be terrible for Karl Rove and he may lose his job because of it. But keep in mind why, if indeed he did say this, he might have said it. Here you have Joe Wilson go to Niger to look into allegations that Saddam is seeking to buy uranium from Niger. Joe Wilson isn't an expert in nuclear weapons or in their acquisition by rogue states. Why did the CIA send him? It was an interesting question.
CARLSON: He was the wrong guy...
CROWLEY: Because his wife recommended him and he lied about that.
CARLSON: Which is...
CROWLEY: His wife, Valerie Plame, recommended him for that mission.
MADDOW: But wait a minute, though.
CROWLEY: He was not qualified for it. And when he came back, he said his results were inconclusive, that Saddam Hussein had tried to get uranium from Africa.
MADDOW: There are two things here, though.
CROWLEY: And then he ended up lying about that, too.
MADDOW: He was the head of African affairs under the National Security Council. So, if he wasn't qualified, I'm not sure who else should have gone.
CROWLEY: Was there—was there a conflict of interests in Valerie Plame recommending her husband for this job?
MADDOW: But wait. Why is this—why is this the point of discussion?
CROWLEY: And shouldn't we be looking at that?
MADDOW: Why are we now carrying the same water that Karl Rove was carrying when he called Bob Novak that day?
CARLSON: We're not—we're not...
MADDOW: But, wait. You're carrying water in terms of—for the administration in this instance.
CARLSON: First of all, I have never carried water for the administration ever, and I'm not starting now. I'm merely...
MADDOW: But this line of argument does.
And I'll tell you why. It does because you're trying to cast doubt on what Joseph Wilson did...
CARLSON: No, it doesn't.
MADDOW: ... on the basis of his wife's job.
CARLSON: No, Rachel, I beg your pardon. It is merely a refutation of the outrageous claims and terms that are being thrown around today, treason, for one.
MADDOW: Fair enough.
CARLSON: Right? The allegation is that the White House leaked her name to destroy her and put possibly her life in danger, and that was a treasonous act. That's just simply not true.
MADDOW: The White House leaked...
CARLSON: By any interpretation.
It was merely a way, I believe, to answer the question, why were they sending this guy, Joe Wilson, there? Well, because his wife set him up. It's a sinecure. She threw him the job. Now, that may be a mean thing to say, but it's very different than trying to out her as an agent...
CROWLEY: And, also, also, Rove's quote to Cooper was, “She works for the agency.” There was no identification there that she had been a covert agent or in any way imperiling national security.
MADDOW: But she was. And they leaked her name to cast out on Joseph Wilson's trip to Niger.
CARLSON: Yes. That's right.
MADDOW: All of which was borne out to be true.
MADDOW: All of which turned out to be true.
WILLIAMS: Which he then in turn lied about to the Senate Intelligence Committee.
MADDOW: Everything Joe Wilson said turned out to be true.
CROWLEY: No, false.
CARLSON: The next situation, in the aftermath of last week's terrorist bombings of London, Prime Minister Tony Blair addressed Parliament today and said he may accelerate the introduction of new tougher anti-terrorism law; 52 people are now confirmed killed by the subway and bus bombs.
And British law enforcement say it is in pursuit of specific subjects. meanwhile, “The New York Times” ran a long piece on Sunday putting out that England's tolerance of radical Muslims made the terror attacks there possible.
And that's absolutely true. We were just over in London over the weekend. And reading the British press, you really get the sense that the people imperiled by these attacks were Muslims in Great Britain, because they were facing this outpouring of hate crimes. In fact, there was no outpouring of hate crimes. They were totally secure. There were no police outside mosques.
And the point is that Great Britain, unlike France, doesn't have enough confidence in its own culture to cast out elements that seek to destroy that culture. And that is why they're at risk. That's why we're at risk.
MADDOW: I think that the American press jumping all over Britain for this, right when this attack happened, jumping all over Britain, the question is, do you blame Britain for this happening?
CARLSON: No. You don't.
MADDOW: Do you blame Casablanca for this, for that happening there? Do you blame Bali for it happening there? I mean, there's a million reasons while different societies—why different societies get targeted.
MADDOW: And there's a million reasons why these things succeed. To blame Britain for it I think...
CARLSON: Well, I think, I think, as those words were leaving my lips, in my mind, I was thinking, I'm not at all blaming Britain for the attacks upon it, and I didn't mean to suggest that at all.
I merely think that some societies handle illiberal elements within them better than others. And Britain, and the United States, for that matter, don't handle radical elements very well.
And—and, Rachel, your point is absolutely right. You're not going to be blaming Great Britain for this attack. You're blaming al Qaeda. You're blaming these radical elements. However, Great Britain has long had this sort of lax immigration policy that has allowed these radical elements to enter into the country and breed in these broader Muslim communities.
So now you have this hotbed of extremism. You have got a serious problem, not just in the U.K., but in France and in Germany and so on, where you have got these whole communities, where these radicals—and, you know, you can't—no one in Scotland Yard yet has been able to apprehend this cell, because they've melted back into these greater Muslim communities.
It's a very serious problem. The U.K. has allowed...
CARLSON: All right.
CROWLEY: ... these radicals to go out and preach hate, without apprehending them, without—without arresting them, without even questioning them. And now they have got a serious problem on their hands.
CARLSON: Next issue, the U.S. reaction to the situation in London.
Since the blasts on Thursday, New York's police department had temporarily shut down cell phone service in all of the city's four car tunnels, fearing a possible terrorist might use a mobile phone to detonate a bomb. However, late Monday afternoon, two tunnels, the Midtown and the Battery, neither of which I ever take, restored service. Two others are still preventing cellular signals.
You know, it's hard to comment on whether this is a good idea or a bad idea if you don't know all the facts. And I don't think that we do. On the other hand, there is a great counter case to be made that it's good to have a cell phone in case of a terror attack, even inside a tunnel.
But more to the point, you wonder if we're not, in some ways, refighting the last war. You know, bombs were set off recently using a cell phone, so we fear that's going to happen. Richard Reid tries to set off a shoe bomb, so you have to take your shoes off at the airport. The next terror attack is probably going to be something we haven't thought of.
MADDOW: Right. But you do have to take the lessons of the previous attacks, certainly.
I mean, to, it seems like, in this case, it's a decision between protecting against what we don't know about and we hope will never happen, another 9/11, God forbid, vs. the thing that we know that happens every day, which is cars—car tires blowing out and car fires and the other things that people use their cell phones to call for help from.
I mean, there are two tunnels now where you can actually use your cell phone. And people use them for very mundane, run-of-the-mill security things.
I mean, part of the problem here, too, as Rachel points out, is that you do have to respond to the previous tactics that the terrorists have used.
CROWLEY: So that they don't think it's easy to do it once again.
However, you know, we've got a whole team of people, thank goodness, in the bowels of the CIA and some of our other intelligence agencies just who are paid to—to think creatively about new and—and—and different ways that terrorists might seek to kill us.
And it's that sort of advanced thinking that we need to be doing, as well as coupling it with this kind of thing, you know, pairing it with tactics that terrorists have used in the past.
CARLSON: All right.
From the profound and sad to the weird and slightly amusing, polygamy, an old situation. Six members of a polygamist community in Colorado City, Arizona, reportedly surrendered to sheriff's deputies today. They were released on bond. The men are charged with sex crimes involving polygamist marriages to underage women.
It should be pointed out that these women are not 12. I think they're 16. That's the age of consent.
CARLSON: Hold on. No, but hold on.
CARLSON: Here's my question. I brought this out.
And, Rachel, I want you to take this on.
MADDOW: All right.
CARLSON: If we're for gay marriage...
CARLSON: I'm dead—this is a serious question.
MADDOW: You always go from polygamy to gay marriage.
MADDOW: These issues are not the same.
CARLSON: They're not at all the same.
CARLSON: But they're linked by this one thought, which you have not satisfactorily answered, I don't think.
CARLSON: And that is, if we agree that the only criterion for marriage is that the people love each other, and who are we, the government, the society, to stand in the way? What is wrong with polygamy? Answer, nothing. The only thing that is wrong with polygamy is, we find it icky. That's not a good reason.
CARLSON: That's not a good reason to make it illegal, though, is it?
It ought to be legal, don't you think?
MADDOW: Do you want to argue the principle or the story?
CARLSON: The principle.
MADDOW: Because, on the story, I'll just say, for the record, you're totally wrong.
This is a case of some creepy 70-year-old guy forcing 12-year-olds to marry married 28-year-old men.
CARLSON: No, not—not 12-year-olds; 16-year-olds.
MADDOW: Well, 16-year-olds. But the history of...
CARLSON: That's the age of consent in a lot of states.
MADDOW: ... the history of the sect, it goes back to 9- and 10- and 11-year-olds, too. I mean, this is a longstanding...
CARLSON: OK. That's creepy, but that's not the point.
CARLSON: On the principle—and I can't believe I have to argue this again—gay marriage is about two people loving each other and wanting to be married, the same way that straight people is about two people loving each other and wanting to be married.
CARLSON: Well, why just two? You haven't answered that. Why just two?
MADDOW: Well, why do—why does gay people have to answer for more than two people...
CARLSON: I'm not saying you should. Gay people as a group should not have to answer that. I'm merely asking...
CARLSON: Monica, what is it about polygamy?
CARLSON: I'm serious.
MADDOW: What is it about two women...
MADDOW: ... wanting to marry two men?
MADDOW: What is it about you people?
CROWLEY: I want a piece of this polygamy conversation.
CARLSON: Yes. What is wrong with polygamy? Sum it up for me.
CROWLEY: Come on. This is about—about community standards, right?
So, you have got community standards in this country, whether it's local, estate or national. And community standards in this country are, one person marries one person.
CROWLEY: We're having the debate in this country about gay marriage, whether it's between a man and a woman or two people of the same sex.
CROWLEY: However, the community standards in this country, right now, under the law, marriage is reserved for one man and one woman.
CARLSON: Not an answer.
CROWLEY: Not 20 women and one guy.
CARLSON: I'll have you know that, in my community, people with red hair are just considered disgusting. They shouldn't have driver's licenses, not—should be allowed to vote. I mean, community standards? That's not an answer.
CROWLEY: That's outrageous, Tucker. Come on.
MADDOW: Marriage is—marriage is between a man and a woman in this country, except in places where it's between an adult and another adult.
If you want to make the case that people in groups should be allowed to marry, that's a separate issue.
CARLSON: No, no, no.
MADDOW: There's no slippery slope.
CARLSON: No, no, you can't argue against it on principle. And neither of you have.
CARLSON: No offense. You're both smart, but you have not...
CROWLEY: Tucker, it's a complete breakdown of the family unit. Come on.
CARLSON: I have the feeling I'm not going to get anywhere. But I hope, when we go home tonight, both of you will search your hearts and ask yourselves, have I really addressed the enormity of this question? And I think both of you will decide, no, I haven't.
MADDOW: ... Carlson, it's incredible, the depth...
CARLSON: Coming up—coming up on THE SITUATION, Hurricane Dennis certainly wreaked havoc on Florida and Alabama, but did the overblown media coverage wreak havoc on the average T.V. watcher's brain? One writer thinks so. We'll debate it.
Also ahead, sure, President Bush has been ridiculed in public before, but how does it feel to get whacked by a former first lady? Find out which legendary comic book doofus Hillary Clinton compared the president to when THE SITUATION rolls on.
CARLSON: Buckle your seat belts. Spanish grooms perform a profound disservice to men everywhere by handing over their very manhood at the altar. We'll explain that in “Op Ed Op Ed” next.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Time for “Op Ed Op Ed.” We spent the day leafing through almost every newspaper in the country, looking for interesting op-eds. We found two of the best, to which Rachel and Monica and I will reply.
First up, while there's no doubt that Hurricane Dennis wreaked a path of devastation on Florida and Alabama, Richard Roeper of “The Chicago Sun-Times” gives this take on the storm, a little cynical—quote—“Admit it. Even as those—even as you were expressing sympathy for all those people fleeing Hurricane Dennis, you were cracking up at the spectacle of reporters for CNN, FOX News Channel, et al, as they struggled to keep their footing while being pelted by the heavy rains and winds.”
Actually, I didn't. I was sent out into the rain, into the drizzle two years ago to cover a hurricane.
CARLSON: And it was sort of a light mist. I had to stand there live on camera, saying, well, it's not very bad out here.
CARLSON: So, actually, I felt bad for them.
And out of all the kind of low things people do on television—over-covering missing baby stories are the worst—I thought this was kind of harmless entertainment. I liked it.
You know, the one thing I do miss about having Dan Rather in the anchor chair is that CBS used to send him to cover the hurricanes. It was great to watch him cling to a tree, you know, while 200-mile-an-hour winds were whipping him.
CROWLEY: I do find it sort of compelling television.
On Saturday, I was flipping through. And, certainly, you know, watching the waves crash into Florida, I mean, it's sort of—as long as you're not there in the middle of the storm. And it does. It makes for sort of urgent watching.
MADDOW: I think it's a public service, because I think that any anchorman—and I do mean men specifically—who goes out and covers a hurricane and has to stand there, holding on to the tree, not getting blown away, that's real hair.
CARLSON: That is...
MADDOW: This is anti-toupee insurance of the most direct kind.
CARLSON: Well, so, I think...
CARLSON: I think we should take note of the anchors who are not covering hurricanes.
CARLSON: Very good.
MADDOW: No more needs to be said.
CARLSON: Well, columnist Kathleen Parker, terrific column today in “The Kansas City Star” about an intriguing new Spanish law.
Listen to this: “Under a law approved Wednesday, the male half of couples electing a civil wedding in Spain will have an additional vow, not only I do, but also I will wash the dishes, change the diapers, make the beds, mop the floors, tote granny to elder care, lower the seat when I'm finished.”
CARLSON: She was joking about the last one, but...
MADDOW: Not really.
CARLSON: ... not the rest. There really is a law.
There ought to be a law, as long as you're doing this, mandating, I don't know, having a cheery personality or fresh morning breath.
CROWLEY: Yes. It's crazy...
CARLSON: There ought to be a—is there going to be another law that says women aren't allowed to complain?
MADDOW: It is—it is feminism gone wild.
CARLSON: But I don't think women actually—men don't do those chores, because women don't make them, possibly because women don't really want them to.
CROWLEY: I want to know how the Spanish government is going to enforce this. I mean, is there going to be like marriage police, where they go in and say, you didn't put the toilet seat down?
CROWLEY: Five minutes in the can.
CARLSON: So to speak.
MADDOW: I think that the idea that the Spanish government is going to enforce this is a little bit of a leap.
I think that it's—I mean, again, coming back to me as the authority on marriage. I'm only allowed to get married in one state. There you have it, and in Spain, it should be noted.
CARLSON: And not that...
MADDOW: It seems like marriage is a—it's a covenant. It's a public promise that you make about, you're going to be a faithful champion of your beloved. It's something that you want to promise to the world. And if that faithful covenant doesn't include an equal share of housework, then maybe you ought to get a public promise on it.
CROWLEY: Yes, but why do you have to codify it?
MADDOW: No, we're not codifying it.
MADDOW: It's part of your vows. It's not part of the law.
CROWLEY: You don't have to say it in front of God and the state.
MADDOW: You're saying in public—you're saying, you promise me you're going to take out the garbage now in front of your whole family.
CARLSON: Rachel, I don't know everything about women.
CARLSON: But enough to confidently predict that most women would be so turned off by the idea of the groom, this man they admire so much, promising to take out the trash.
CARLSON: To wash the dishes.
MADDOW: ... more turned off by that than they would be turned on by him actually taking out the garbage once in a while?
CROWLEY: Yes. But that is a private negotiation...
CARLSON: See, I disagree with that.
CROWLEY: ... in the couple. You don't have to bring it into...
CARLSON: I think that is propaganda spread by a certain women's lobby. I don't think women are turned on by trashing taking out.
MADDOW: Yes, the big Spanish women's lobby. They're very powerful.
CROWLEY: Actually, it is kind of a turn-on.
CARLSON: All right.
Coming up, do Guantanamo Bay prisoners really eat ice cream, choose from 113 different kinds of Middle Eastern food and play Ping-Pong? A U.S. senator just back from Cuba says they certainly do. He joins me next.
CARLSON: Welcome back.
Volleyball, Ping-Pong and ice cream every Sunday, is this any way to treat suspected terrorists?
Well, my next guest says that's exactly the way some detainees at Guantanamo Bay are being treated by the U.S. military.
Joining me now, Republican Senator Pat Roberts of Kansas.
Senator Roberts, thanks a lot for joining us.
SEN. PAT ROBERTS ®, KANSAS: It's my pleasure, Tucker. Thank you.
CARLSON: So, Amnesty International described Gitmo as the gulag of our times, the site of war crimes. Your colleague Dick Durbin of Illinois suggested that the behavior there was like the behavior of the Nazis. That's not at all what you saw?
ROBERTS: Not at all.
As a matter of fact, I think the statements you refer to are rather shocking. And I won't go any further than that. But, at any rate, hopefully, that's past history. I think it's a very unique situation. It's absolutely unprecedented that a nation at war with terrorists—and we have taken down about 80 percent of their leadership, and those who were not killed are at Gitmo. And there are some very nasty folks in there, to say the least.
We are gaining some very valuable information and intelligence. And it's current. But the—there's no question in my mind—and Senator Hagel and I, Senator Hagel and I—Senator Hagel from Nebraska, made a very thorough check. And other members have been down. And I think they have come away with the same impression in regards to humane treatment.
It's all basically based on the fact that, if you comply, if you behave yourself, you will be simply granted some common ground.
CARLSON: Senator, there was—there was a press release sent out by the Pentagon just the other day that boasted that prisoners at camp four at Guantanamo Bay, I think, for the most compliant of the detainees, get ice cream every Sunday.
And I wondered why. If these guys are terrorists, why are we giving them ice cream and then bragging about it? And if they're not terrorists, why are we holding them?
ROBERTS: The people who are not compliant, who do not behave, who do not respond to any kind of interrogation and who cause a lot of trouble—and I mean a lot of trouble—and there are some—let me say on behalf of the young men and women who work in that area, that they do a very, very tough job. That's one thing. They aren't getting ice cream.
ROBERTS: They aren't getting anything that's been described, that you describe in your opening.
The others, however, who are complying and are behaving themselves, and, basically, during interrogation, are providing material, they live in a common area. And the more that they behave and the more that they comply and the more that we gain their trust, then that's what happens. And it's a system based on trust.
CARLSON: I think Americans tend to err on the side of kindness over meanness.
There was a quote from Chief Warrant Officer Tom Peal, who runs camp four, who said—quote—“We're here to make them as comfortable as possible.”
So, again, my question to you is, even if they're compliant, even if they're obeying the rules, these are people you, yourself, have described as terrorists. Why in the world would a chief warrant officer of the U.S. Army be doing his best to make them comfortable? Why would you treat terrorists like that?
ROBERTS: He wants the intelligence that they will provide, the current intelligence that they will provide.
And we have found that positive interrogation, i.e. carrots, instead of sticks...
ROBERTS: ... works better over the long term to provide the current intelligence that even applies to London and/or Madrid and/or Casablanca, because this is a copycat deal. It works. And so, if it works, that is the main reason we have them there for the intelligence.
ROBERTS: And also to—to keep them isolated.
CARLSON: But some of—some of these guys have been there for three-and-a-half years.
ROBERTS: That's correct.
CARLSON: I wonder what kind of current intelligence someone who has been held at a detention facility in Cuba could have after three-and-a-half years.
ROBERTS: I thought you'd never ask the question. That's the question we get most of the time.
ROBERTS: This is the senior al Qaeda leadership.
We have taken down 80 percent. Some are killed. These are the people in Gitmo. The people who replace them went to the same camps, the same training camps, the same schools. They know who these people are. And so, with repeated interrogation and gaining the trust of that individual—and that certainly is not everybody, by any means—but with some, it is being very successful.
And they are applying good intelligence that applies to the current situation. I—I can't go into specifics, but the reason that we're doing this and the reason that somebody has been there for three years, basically, they know what is going on. They know the specific plan and the game plan of al Qaeda.
ROBERTS: And the ideology and all of that.
CARLSON: Well, finally, Senator, you—you said that you can't tell us exactly what information has been gleaned from these detainees. I understand that.
But don't you think, at some point, considering the public is growing uneasy about the existence of Gitmo, it would be useful for the administration to—to bring forward some of this information and convince the rest of us that this is worth it?
ROBERTS: Well, if we bring it forward, you're not going to be able to detect and deter the kind of attack that we saw in London.
Let's detect and deter the attack first, and then we'll worry about any specific information that we have to, to convince the American public we're getting the right kind of information. The second thing is, what would you do with these people? We are releasing four. We're going through a very circumspect and careful vetting process to release those that we no longer think are a danger to our troops back to Afghanistan or back to Iraq.
CARLSON: Well, you could—you could charge them with crimes, if they have in fact committed crimes.
ROBERTS: That's correct. And we're going through that in a very careful review process.
CARLSON: OK. Senator Pat Roberts of Kansas, thanks a lot for joining us.
ROBERTS: It's my pleasure, sir. Thank you.
CARLSON: A new marketing campaign from Anheuser-Busch is putting its beer money on your patriotism. It's red, white and booze for our outsider, who will be punch-drunk when I get through with him.
CARLSON: Welcome back to THE SITUATION. Sitting in for the vacationing Billy Barty, I'm Tucker Carlson. Still more to get to on this very busy Monday, so it's time to dive back in with Rachel Maddow and Monica Crowley.
MADDOW: Thanks, Tucker.
Well, a sticky situation in Iraq. But before we get to that, I just want to recap what I thought was the most interesting point of the interview we just did, and it was this, the obvious: Of course you're giving him ice cream and allowing them to play ping-pong. We're Americans. That's what we do.
But it seems to me the—I mean, Americans are—I mean, despite what Amnesty International says, are the kind of people who would let suspected terrorists play ping-pong and eat ice cream. My question, though, is if they've been there three-and-a-half years, and they know they're going to get ice cream if they reveal secrets about Al Qaeda, isn't that kind of great incentive to make up secrets about Al Qaeda?
MADDOW: Ding. That's exactly right. I mean, to me—I applaud you for trying to take the new tack that it's too cushy at Guantanamo, if that's your new approach...
CARLSON: But it makes sense. If you say—you believe they're all terrorists. OK, that's a fair thing to think. Then why are we giving them ice cream?
MADDOW: Well, listen, but we're not there to punish them, right? We're there to detain them to get intelligence from them. They're not breaking rocks. What's the purpose of holding them at Guantanamo? For us to get intelligence from them and to interrogate them.
CROWLEY: Well, that's only part of the reason...
MADDOW: And if we thought they were terrorists, we'd be bringing them on charges. We're not trying them, so clearly we're not confident...
CROWLEY: But they're in Guantanamo for a reason, and that's because they're not exactly Boy Scouts. They were apprehended on the battlefields of Pakistan, and Afghanistan, and Iraq, and elsewhere, because we've intelligence to suggest that they were operatives.
MADDOW: Wait, wait, hold on. They're not serving a sentence.
CROWLEY: Wait. Let me just say this. They were detained for two reasons, one, because they may have intelligence that would help us save our lives, save American lives. And number two, they're detained, because if we put them back on the battlefields, they will turn around—and we've had evidence of this—they'd get back there, they pick up guns, they make bombs, and they go after our troops.
MADDOW: But they have no incentives to their detention at Guantanamo. They're being held so we can intelligence from them, and because we've decided they're enemy combatants. We have not decided that they're terrorists, because if we wanted to bring them up on terrorism charges, we would...
CROWLEY: They're out of the Geneva Convention protections.
MADDOW: They're suspects.
CARLSON: We can decide that they're terrorists without charging them. Whether we should do that or not is an entirely separate question, but they could be terrorists who are in this legal limbo, which is, in fact, what some of them are.
MADDOW: That's right. We could decide that they're terrorists, but never be able to prove it, and never have to bring up any evidence, and just hold them for their natural lives.
CROWLEY: Here's the central question...
CARLSON: We're going to move on, but I think we're choosing—I think the idea is we're choosing not to charge them, not that we don't necessarily have the evidence. I personally think we ought to charge them, but it doesn't mean they're not terrorists that we're not charging them.
MADDOW: But it does mean that they haven't been sentenced, so the idea that they're not getting the appropriate punishment is a little weird.
CARLSON: Punishing terrorism is good in its...
CROWLEY: When you see the conditions that the senator just described, it's quite—while we're over here having these ridiculous debates about how many rights to give these terrorists at Guantanamo, the enemy is over here figuring out new and creative ways to kill us.
CARLSON: Well, speaking of the enemy, Iraq troop withdrawals. Over the weekend, a secret British memo surfaced that said Washington plans to slash the U.S.-led force in Iraq from 176,000 to just 66,000 early next year. Now, military spokesmen on the ground are denying they're being pressured into a hasty withdrawal, but this is really good news anyway you slice it.
I mean, the idea is—this came out in the “Sunday Mail” in London yesterday—that we will be slashing overall troops there by 100,000. Reason: We're apparently planning to return something like 14 out of 18 provinces in Iraqis to the Iraqis. This is exactly the whole point of the exercise, to the extent there was a point to the exercise, and that is to make it a self-governing country. I don't think there's any way to criticize this. It's good news.
MADDOW: I think that I, like everybody in America, wants as many American troops to come home alive as possible. And so we hope that the commanders on the ground are the people who are informing and leading these decisions strategically.
I do think, though, that this raises the whole issue of a timeline for withdrawal. And the leaked British documents do suggest that there is a timeline for withdrawal. And I think that that's been dismissed by the common wisdom, and I think it's wrong to dismiss that as an idea. I think it's smart to set a timeline.
CARLSON: Of course, there's a timeline. There's 138,000 American troops over there. You can't just, you know, airlift them out all in one day. I mean, there is literally a timeline. The argument is about making it public. Should we tell people what it is?
CROWLEY: That's exactly right...
MADDOW: Should we set a date by which we will leave? And I think we should.
CROWLEY: Well, yes, but when you do that, then you send a signal to the enemy that all they have to do is bide their time until the United States...
MADDOW: That's the common wisdom. I think that's just—I think that's really thin, that it doesn't hold up.
CROWLEY: Well, all you have to do is go back to the Vietnam War, because we did a process of Vietnamization at the end of that war where we trained and equipped the South Vietnamese to take over their own security and fight the war themselves.
When the United States withdrew, the South Vietnamese government fell. There is no substitute for American power. We are doing the best we can in training these Iraqis. Turn it over to them eventually. But I think this timetable, way too soon.
CARLSON: I'm totally for it.
MADDOW: But the idea that you could—but when you don't set a timetable—the thing that you get when you set a timetable is that you're telling the Iraq government, who needs to be taking over, who has the most stake in this, “You need to have your act together by x date.”
CARLSON: That's right, but it actually...
CROWLEY: But you're also telling the enemy the exact same thing.
MADDOW: But that's fine.
CARLSON: I mean, I hate to side with Rachel on this, but I think you make a very good point. You are telling the fledgling Iraq government, “It's exam day, buddy,” you know what I mean? We're taking the training wheels off.
MADDOW: That's right. That's right.
CARLSON: A sad situation last night in Los Angeles where a toddler died when her father used her as a human shield during a shootout with police. Jose Raul Lemos was reportedly intoxicated at the time.
He fired repeatedly at neighbors and police over several hours. The standoff ended a gun battle with 11 officers killing Lemos and his daughter. One officer was shot in the shoulder.
You know, you don't want to second-guess police behavior under-fire, or anybody's behavior under-fire. I guess the one thing I would hope for, now that this tragedy has occurred, is that the police would apologize. There is a tendency among law enforcement, as much as they're doing their job, and doing a good job most of the time, not to apologize when a tragedy occurs like this, for which they are partly responsible.
You see people die in police chases all the time, and the tendency is always to blame the driver of the vehicle that caused it. It's this guy's fault. It's the hostage-taker's fault, but I do hope the LAPD unequivocally says, “We're story for killing this child,” because they should be.
MADDOW: Interesting point.
CROWLEY: Yes, I mean, probably one of the reasons why they don't apologize is because there's liability involved and that sort of thing. But the moral thing to do is. I mean, the police are under incredible stress, you know? And they're being shot at, they're being fired upon. And they've got to make a split-second decision. I'm really sorry that this baby died, but this guy, this thug, put that child into harm's way.
MADDOW: And this situation is such a nightmare. I mean, he was obviously either nuts, or stoned out of his gourd, or drunk. And there's obviously an intoxication issue or just a plain craziness issue going on here. But this is why people like me don't want a very, very militarily-level well-armed citizenry. I mean, it would have been better had this guy not access to military-level firepower.
CARLSON: It's funny. Most people who own guns, including me, not mentally ill, not taking human shields.
MADDOW: That's right. And that's why...
CARLSON: Which is why I have a constitutional right to have a gun.
MADDOW: And that's a great argument for doing it. But if you let everybody have guns, you end up with these guys having guns, too.
CARLSON: Well, you don't let them. They are guaranteed by the Constitution the right to have a gun.
MADDOW: That's fair enough, in your interpretation of the Second Amendment. We differ.
CARLSON: Which is correct. Which is correct, incidentally.
Next situation, Hillary Clinton makes Republicans mad. Nothing new about that. But in a speech yesterday in Colorado, the senator went on the offensive comparing President Bush to Alfred E. Neuman. That's right, the “Mad” magazine cover boy with the catch phrase, “What, me worry?”
Senator Clinton said, quote, “I sometimes feel that Alfred E. Neuman is in charge in Washington.” And it's not the first time she said that. Senator Clinton made similar remarks in January and again in April. She needs a new speech.
Can't repeat yourself too much when people are watching. I mean, look, calling Bush dumb gets you nowhere. It's been tried in four elections, two in Texas, two at the federal level. He's not dumb. You don't get anywhere by saying that.
If I can just change topic, though, this gave me cause to read the speech. After she said that, she described the Iraq war, the war in Iraq, that you despise as, quote, “part of the long struggle against terrorism.” So here you have Hillary Clinton attacking the president as dumb, and then endorsing his war on the same grounds that he justifies it, taking the neocon position. When is someone going to point out that Hillary Clinton is now officially a neocon?
MADDOW: Well, Hillary Clinton and I have never agreed on the war, to the extent that I get held up as the left's standard-bearer on this. I mean, she's supported the war in Iraq from the very beginning.
CARLSON: Yes, but you're not a partisan, though. I think you're an honest lefty.
MADDOW: Well, that's fair. I mean, Hillary Clinton's position on the war is one thing. What I think is interesting here is that the Republicans have come out and absolutely gone on attack against Hillary for insulting the president.
Attacking Hillary for insulting anyone, Republicans! I mean, Hillary Clinton, on this very fair program, has been called the anti-Christ and sociopathic.
MADDOW: I mean, the name-calling against Hillary is out of control.
CARLSON: Wait a second. But let's be fair, and accurate, and balanced, for that matter here, and say, yes, of course, she's been attacked from a lot of different people.
CARLSON: But not by the president. Whatever you say about this president, he actually does not attack people very often. Almost never does Bush level a political personal attack against anyone.
CROWLEY: Here was the basis of her comments. She's running for president, OK? So she's got to go after this president's legacy. That's what that personalized comment was about.
Then she turns around, as you say, and essentially endorses his policy on Iraq, meaning she's trying to be—she's a dove in hawk's clothing so that she can run for president on national security...
CARLSON: Maybe she's a hawk in hawk's clothing.
CROWLEY: She's trying to have it both ways, like all the time.
MADDOW: She's always supported the war, and she's right about the president. There's nothing wrong with that.
CROWLEY: She has long—for 35 years, she's been antiwar, and suddenly she's a hawk?
CARLSON: All right. Let history record that she is endorsing the very central tenet of George W. Bush's not just presidency but legacy, the war in Iraq.
MADDOW: The war in Iraq, which she's always been wrong about.
CARLSON: Well, have fun voting for her.
MADDOW: But she's also right that he's Alfred E. Neuman.
CARLSON: Thank you both very much.
MADDOW: Thank you, Tucker.
CROWLEY: Thank you, Tucker.
CARLSON: Coming up, a tale of two sisters, one a world-famous pop star, the other an HIV-positive prostitute. Tabloid fodder? Of course it is. But also a lesson in bad government. We'll explain that in just a minute.
Plus, a guy goes to a strip club and gets the royal treatment from well-meaning exotic dancers. And aren't they all well-meaning? Where does he get off suing the club? I'll tell you where, on the “Cutting Room Floor,” that's where. Stick around.
CARLSON: Welcome back to “The Outsider,” a man from outside the world of news who willingly eschews common sense to play devil's advocate to my ever-cogent point on a series of stories. Joining us now, ESPN radio and HBO boxing host, a man sensibly turned away by British immigration authorities on the basis of his facial hair, Max Kellerman.
MAX KELLERMAN, ESPN RADIO HOST: That's one point of view.
CARLSON: Yes, it's also true. I report, you decide.
First up, the Israeli government now acknowledges that the partially built wall in Jerusalem meant to prevent Palestinian terrorist bombings also intended to maintain a Jewish majority in that holy city. On Monday, Palestinian leaders called for street protests against the barrier which they say divides Palestinians from one another and makes things like getting to work more difficult.
I should say upfront, I support Israel, I support the wall. The wall's been great for Israel. It's prevented terror attacks.
The reason those terror attacks are such a problem, however, is because of the ongoing dispute over land. The fact is, this wall has not only been a defensive measure but also a land grab, which is bad for Israel. The wall along its current lines grabs about 10 percent of East Jerusalem and the West Bank, thereby ensuring that this war goes on for generations. It's bad for Israel. I'm against it.
KELLERMAN: Well, it's a land grab in the sense that they're trying to come to the negotiation having pre-negotiated themselves into a good position. However, put yourselves in the Israeli's place for a second. Imagine if Mexican immigrants, or illegal immigrants, were coming in over the border, legal or illegal, and blowing stuff up, and they were terrorists.
KELLERMAN: And we erected a wall through Texas—not through Mexico, through Texas—and then the world called it a “land grab.” That land belongs to Israel. You can call it an occupying army, but they took it in 1967. It never officially went back to anyone.
CARLSON: If it belongs to Israel, why can't the people who live there vote in the Israeli democracy? Because it's not part of Israel proper. It's a territory. They need to decide, is it part of Israel? They can't do that, because that would make the country majority Arab, and they would be killed. Or is it not?
KELLERMAN: So what...
CARLSON: If not, give it back.
KELLERMAN: That's partly because of the definition of Palestinian refugee...
CARLSON: OK, OK.
KELLERMAN: ... which is so loose that they wind up with a Palestinian majority in that area. In fact, most of them are not refugees, never had any claim to that land.
CARLSON: I'm not saying—and I'm not even taking their side, I'm taking Israel's side. And if you care about the future of Israel, then you want them to get rid of those territories, because they hurt Israel.
KELLERMAN: I agree with you in the long-run.
CARLSON: OK, well, they should do it now.
Well, there's no business like show business, except maybe prostitution, and the Carey family's involved in both. Mariah Carey, a rich, famous, eccentric pop diva, it seems her sister may turn tricks. The “New York Post” reports that 44-year-old Alison Carey-Scott, arrested for prostitution soliciting an undercover cop in Long Island.
It was her on second arrest in ten weeks, and there's other lamentable news. Alison Carey is reportedly HIV-positive. I feel sorry for Alison Carey. I feel sorry for anybody who's HIV-positive and a hooker.
However, if you're HIV-positive and you know it, and you're still turning tricks, you ought to be in jail. Why? Because you are spreading a deadly, incurable disease to people. This woman was arrested twice and let out.
We need to do to her what was done to Typhoid Mary. She spent 26 years in jail. Why? Because when they let her out the first, she went back to preparing food and she killed people.
KELLERMAN: Prostitution is illegal. So to say that she should be locked up for having HIV and then also prostituting herself, well, she should be locked up, I guess, for being a prostitute in the first place. I don't think it should be illegal.
But let's say it wasn't illegal, and she had HIV, and that would be the basis on which you put her in jail. You support the right to smoke cigarettes, right?
CARLSON: Yes, vigorously.
KELLERMAN: Yes, that gives you lung cancer. There's a warning on the box. So let's say she were to wear a t-shirt advertising the fact, “I have HIV,” would she still have to go to jail?
CARLSON: No, because...
KELLERMAN: OK. I would say that, when it comes to Johns looking for prostitutes, buyer beware, wouldn't you say, Tucker?
CARLSON: Yes, buyer beware. However, there is a—that's right. But there's not the—look, if I'm in Kinshasa, or I'm in Burkina Faso, and I'm in a house of prostitution, I can beware because I have some expectation they're going to have HIV. In the United States, we believe...
KELLERMAN: That is our prostitutes don't have HIV?
CARLSON: Yes, yes, because there are laws—there are laws in the majority of states that make it a crime—unfortunately in New York. only a misdemeanor—to knowingly pass on the virus.
So you've got to—I had always believed that the government would arrest and keep in jail prostitutes who were knowingly spreading this disease, but they're not. Why? Because there is a lobby that pushes—essentially that pushes against laws that is would make it a felony to spread this disease.
KELLERMAN: I guess the liberals want to spread AIDS?
CARLSON: No, they don't. But it's a balance between civil liberties, the civil liberties of a person who has the disease, and the right of the rest of us not to...
KELLERMAN: You should not knowingly be able to pass on a disease, especially if you're a professional.
CARLSON: That's especially wrong. Good point.
Anheuser-Busch is proudly waving its red, white and brew. Last bad pun of the show. The makers of Budweiser unapologetically used patriotic appeal in new marketing messages.
The brewery's ads point out that competitor Miller beer is controlled by South Africans who left that country after apartheid was abolished. They also take a shot at competitor Coors, now part of Molson. That's a Canadian brewer.
According to the “New York Times,” critics believe the advertising campaign is, quote, “jingoistic.” Now, who would be offended at an American beer company selling beer as an American beer? Here's my point.
KELLERMAN: Me, apparently.
CARLSON: Look. Drinking Coors makes Canadians rich. I think you ought to know that before you buy Coors.
CARLSON: Second, we should be proud of our culture. The French eat horses, right? The British eat marmite. We drink Budweiser. There's nothing wrong with being proud of it. It may not be the best beer in the world, but it's our beer. Good for America.
KELLERMAN: Are you a free trader?
CARLSON: Of course.
KELLERMAN: You believe in free trade, right?
CARLSON: Well, to some extent, yes.
KELLERMAN: This country—this market is saturated with Budweiser. I mean, there's nowhere else to go with Budweiser. So a company is like a shark. You've got to keep moving forward. You've got to keep growing. Why would we want to alienate international markets that we need to keep growing that American company, Tucker?
CARLSON: We're not. Because in other markets, say in Great Britain, Budweiser is advertised completely differently. We don't make jingoistic...
KELLERMAN: Right. They make fun of Americans. Therefore, you're right.
CARLSON: It's a litmus test, however. If you don't want to drink Budweiser because it's an American company, we don't want you to drink Budweiser. You're not good enough to drink Budweiser.
KELLERMAN: That's right. I agree.
CARLSON: All right. Amen. Max Kellerman, thank you.
Coming up, the 10th annual Redneck Games came off without a hitch, and yet this celebration of the white trash spirit went nearly uncovered by the liberal media. Until, that is, they made the “Cutting Room Floor,” next.
CARLSON: Welcome back. Time for the “Cutting Room Floor,” where we sweep up all the odds and ends of news we couldn't pack into the show and bring them to you. Willie Geist, our producer, has arrived with them in hand.
WILLIE GEIST, PRODUCER: Tucker, it's great to have you back on American soil.
CARLSON: Glad to be here, Willie.
GEIST: Jersey soil, more specifically, contaminated as it may be.
GEIST: I've got two of the most ridiculous lawsuits you will ever see in your life.
CARLSON: Oh, I live for these.
GEIST: Go ahead.
CARLSON: Thank you. Thank you, Willie.
Well, we may have lost the Olympic Games to London last week, but America still has the Redneck Games. East Dublin, Georgia, was the host city for the 10th anniversary of the games held over this weekend. Featured events included redneck horseshoes, where the horseshoes are toilet seats, bobbing for pig's feet, the mud pit belly flop, hubcap tossing, and the armpit serenade. The games are kicked off ever year, of course, with the ceremonial lighting of the grill.
GEIST: Of course.
Tucker, I have to say I love rednecks. And I lived among them for about 10 years. They embrace the stereotype.
CARLSON: Yes, I know, they do.
GEIST: They're totally unapologetic.
CARLSON: That's so cool.
GEIST: And you're not going to see the WASP Games, with speed shopping at Whole Foods or something.
CARLSON: No, you're not.
GEIST: Just embrace who you are. It's the best.
CARLSON: Even I wouldn't watch that.
Well, the world prayed for the city of London after the horrible terror attacks last week, but one pop sensation didn't think enough people prayed for him. R&B star Omarion was in London last Thursday.
He suffered no injury or inconveniences as a result of the bombings, but his publicist released a statement which read, quote, “He would like his fans to pray that he has a safe trip and a safe return home.” When asked for clarification, Omarion's publicist said, “He wasn't hurting or anything, just the fact that he was there and all that.”
GEIST: You know, the minute I heard the news on Thursday, the first thing I thought, “How is Omarion? Where is Omarion? Is he safe?”
You know, this was quite an ordeal for him. Can you imagine the traffic he must have hit in his own limo on the way to the jet?
CARLSON: I was just there. It was really difficult.
GEIST: We're all praying for you, O.
CARLSON: Alfred Hitchcock would be proud of this next story. A couple of black birds in Helena, Montana, are protecting the parking lot in a doctor's office by dive bombing anyone who dares get out of his car. Look at these people running for their lives.
Wildlife officials say the birds are just protecting their nests.
Wildlife officials always apologize for animals. You ever notice that?
GEIST: Yes. And you know what, Tucker? I'm willing to bet the ranch this was the most expecting thing that happened at that E.R. this week. Not a lot of gang-banging in Helena, I don't thing.
CARLSON: I bet you there's a crystal-meth problem, though.
All right. Well, your garden variety frivolous lawsuit is a dime-a-dozen these days. But every so often, one comes along that just raises the bar. The Utah Court of Appeals has resurrected a lawsuit brought against the church by two women who say they were promised a meeting with Jesus Christ and have not yet received it. One of the women says she liquidated her retirement savings and gave the money to the True and Living Church of Jesus Christ of the Saints of the Last Days in return for a meeting with Jesus.
GEIST: Tucker, I'm shocked that the True and Living Church of Jesus Christ of the Saints of the Last Days Church, a fringe church, fringe for excommunicated Mormons, would stoop to this. I'm shocked.
CARLSON: Yes, I kind of am, too. I'm skipping Sunday.
GEIST: Me too.
CARLSON: Not going to their services anymore.
Well, speaking of embarrassing lawsuits, an Arkansas man suing a strip joint because he said he was spanked too hard by a group of strippers during his 31st birthday party. Keith Lowery was handcuffed and spanked with a 3-foot-long paddle by three dancers at “Sensations” in Jacksonville. He received severe bruises on his buttocks. The club has agreed to discontinue all spankings.
GEIST: Discontinue spankings? I hope these bad apples don't spoil it for the rest of us. Spanking, when performed professionally, is totally safe. Let's not throw the baby out with the bath water here. Don't overreact. Keep spanking alive.
CARLSON: Yes. I'm sorry that “Sensations” in Jacksonville has caved to the politically correct police on this question.
GEIST: Jacksonville, Arkansas, not Florida.
CARLSON: Sorry. Jacksonville, Arkansas.
Willie, you have the best stories imaginable. Thank you.
That's THE SITUATION tonight. I'm Tucker Carlson. Thanks for watching. “SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY” is next.
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