Guest: Morgan Fairchild, David Dreier, Star Parker, Patrice Adcrost ,Tom Feeney, Malik Zulu Shabazz , James Hirsen, Rod Paige
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST: Tonight‘s top headline, a paper of record, pushes rumors about Dick Cheney being bumped by Bush. The “Real Deal,” let‘s keep the rumors on the editorial page.
Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY were no passport‘s required and only common sense is allowed.
“The New York Times” outdid itself today printing what they admit are conspiracy theories about the vice president, while treating John Edwards with kid gloves.
Is it fair reporting, or blatant bias in the newsroom.
Then Hollywood is at it again, showing the slanted Reagan miniseries with 7 Emmy nominations, including best actor nods for Ron and Nancy‘s roles. Were they judged on talents or politics. We‘re going to be debating that, too.
And what do women really want in a president? Actress Morgan Fairchild joins us to tell us what Bush and Kerry need to do to bridge the gender gap and win the women‘s vote.
ANNOUNCER: From the pressroom, to the courtroom, to the halls of Congress, Joe Scarborough has seen it all. Welcome to SCARBOROUGH COUNTY:
SCARBOROUGH: Is Dick Cheney going to get kicked off of the vice-presidential ticket with George Bush?
It‘s time for tonight‘s “Real Deal.”
Well, “The New York Times” reported this morning on page one that Vice President Cheney could possibly be removed from the presidential ticket of George Bush this fall. “The Times” source for this above this fold shocker, the Democrats. In fact, “The Times” went on to say that it could be nothing more than a rumor. So why pass off a Cheney anti-rumor as front page news?
Could it have anything to do with media bias?
Well, they will, “The Times” made it clear that they loathe the current V.P. Let‘s see how the press is treating John Kerry‘s vice-presidential selection. Here‘s a sunny cover snapshot, oh, my goodness, of the sunshine boys. Look at the smiles on the face there. It‘s great. And now, let‘s go on to “Time” magazine and look at their cover story. This is what “The New York Times” had, the contenders, and again all smiles. I‘m telling you what, this guy right here looks like Robert Redford in the 1970‘s movie “The Candidate.” It is a love story. And, of course, let‘s look and see what “The New York Times” did when they wanted to run a story on the ticket.
We don‘t—actually, we don‘t have that. I promise you, it was just as glowing. You had them smiling. You had little children running around. Nothing like the scary Dick Cheney stories. Now somebody who likes John Edwards also, all I‘m asking for is what most Americans want their newspapers and news shows to do, and that is to be fair and accurate. This morning “The New York Times” front page rumor report fell short of that mark. And that doesn‘t service anybody well this important election year. And that‘s tonight‘s “Real Deal.”
With me now, we have actress and political activist Morgan Fairchild. Morgan, thanks so much for being with us. I want to start with the news, of course, about the Emmys coming out. Some are talking about “The Sopranos,” some are talking about the HBO mini-series “Angels in America,” but what about the Reagan mini-series that got seven Emmy awards?
MORGAN FAIRCHILD, ACTRESS: What about it, Joe? I mean, it‘s artistic endeavor. What do you want?
FAIRCHILD: Obviously there are people at the academy felt they deserved it.
SCARBOROUGH: Is it an artistic endeavor or is it a political endeavor?
FAIRCHILD: I think any time you make any kind of mini-series about an—about a biographical person that‘s a biography, you‘re going to run into this kind of thing. They made an artistic piece of work that they felt served what they were trying to accomplish. And I don‘t think it necessarily had anything to do with politics, it had to do with stories of the man. It was based on several different biographies that had been done on President Reagan. I think they pulled lines and situations and scenes from each book that was out at that time. So I‘m not sure what it is that you‘re upset about.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, it‘s not what I‘m upset about. Obviously, it‘s not like I‘m sitting around in my room stewing. You saw the news obviously over the past six months. A lot of Americans were extremely upset at the movie, at Viacom‘s decision to air it on CBS. In fact, as you know Les Moonves, said it wasn‘t fair and accurate. And let me just show you some of the things that Americans were upset about. The CBS mini-series, “The Reagan‘s” was nominated for seven awards today as I said.
And this was the made-for-tv movie that was dropped by CBS because of misleading depictions of the president and Mrs. Reagan. Of course, you had Ronald Reagan acting like a complete dunce, not recognizing his own staff members in 1986. You also had Ronald Reagan saying that he believed that the Armageddon was the reason why he had to do all of these things that were dangerous for Americans. So you really think that that was a fair and accurate depiction of the Reagan administration, and do you think that today‘s seven Emmy awards had more to do with acting and directing and writing, than it did about politics?
FAIRCHILD: I think that‘s what it‘s ostensibly based on. And I think there was also a biography about George Bush around 9/11 that came out at the same time, and I didn‘t hear anybody complaining about that. Frankly, I haven‘t seen the Reagan movie, so I don‘t have any personal opinion on it. But I heard some of the performances were very good, so I don‘t know what you want me to say about that. It‘s the Emmy nominations. You know, they made a decision, I‘m not here to defender their decision and I‘m not here to censor anybody. And I‘ll defend the people‘s right to make a movie about George Bush and 9/11 the same way as I will defend the right of a group of people to make a movie about former president. That‘s what America‘s all about.
SCARBOROUGH: Yes, free speech, certainly is. And they have the right to do that. And I think, unfortunately, that‘s why a lot of Americans think that Hollywood is disconnected from mainstream America. I want to bring in Congressman David Dreier. Lets talk about...
REP. DAVID DREIER ®, CALIFORNIA: Hey, Morgan and Joe, how are you doing?
So far—I‘ve just listened to Morgan over the last second or so, and I haven‘t heard anything I disagree with. First, we‘re both in the exact same boat. I guess, neither of us have actually seen the Reagan movie. I saw a little clip of it when it was on Showtime and neither of us want to in anyway impinge on first amendment rights. We want people to make motion pictures, but we also want to make sure that Ronald Reagan‘s life is characterized correctly and appropriately. And I think that one of the great things, Joe—and we spent a lot of time together during the Memorial week of President Reagan, we had literally hundreds of thousands of people who walked by the casket here in Washington and back at my home in Los Angeles. And I think that that really reflected the view that most Americans have, Democrats, Republicans and independents, towards Ronald Reagan and the kind of leadership that he demonstrated.
SCARBOROUGH: I want to ask you, David Dreier, you missed because I know you‘re voting on the House floor, but obviously, we‘re talking about Hollywood bias. We are also talking about media bias, a lot of people were upset about “The New York Times” saying that Dick Cheney was going to be bumped off of the ticket.
What was your take on the rumors being printed on “The New York Times?”
DREIER: Well, you know it‘s amazing. I just left Dick Cheney two hours ago and the president, I was down, we had a little gathering with them. And, you know, there‘s no truth to it in. I mean, in fact, anyone who knows and understands the Bush family knows that loyalty is extraordinarily important, and Dick Cheney has not only been loyal, he‘s been a phenomenal vice president. And the interesting thing, too, that I will say, as we sort of get into this campaign thing, I‘m really sort of perplexed.
I mean, The record on which George Bush and Cheney is running has created 1.26 million jobs in the last few months. I just got the word, Josh Bolton was at this meeting, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, from October to May of this year, we‘ve had an unanticipated $40 billion in revenues flow into the federal treasury that were unanticipated. And that‘s come about because of the tax cut and the ensuing economic growth that followed. So, I mean, this is a record of which we‘re very proud. We‘re really headed towards point three of the five points that the president outlined.
SCARBOROUGH: David, let‘s keep talking about the vice president, though. I mean, great news. Sounds great. I‘m sure we can all be glad that the U.S. economy is heating up. But I want to play you what Vice President Cheney told C-Span about the so-called buzz that was reported in “The New York Times.”
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARD CHENEY, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The president‘s spoken of the subject, he‘s made his decision, I‘ve made mine. I suppose right now because of—we‘re in the run up to the convention people haven‘t got much to talk about, so you get speculation on that. It‘s normal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: David, NBC‘s Tim Russert has reported that five top Bush administration officials say that Cheney is on the ticket. The question is this, why would “The New York Times” print such an important story about possibly replacing the vice president without getting a single administration source?
I mean, this is fairly unprecedented.
DREIER: Well, it‘s incredible. And I think, that as Russert points out, any source would in fact provide news that is exactly the opposite of what has been reported. And it‘s created this big stir. And I think that Dick is absolutely right when he says that this is a very slow time. We‘re getting ready—we‘re winding down our work here in the Congress over the next week, and then off to the conventions. And the thing I‘m looking forward to most for the summer are the Athens Olympics, you know.
That‘s the thing that to me is going to be most exciting to me, so they have to resort to this kind of stuff with very little credibility. And we all know that the credibility of the “New York Times” and we can go all the way back to Jayson Blair has certainly been brought into question over the last few years. And I think it‘s sad because the “New York Times” is a great newspaper. And I‘ve always enjoyed reading it. But its credibility is just not as great as it once was.
SCARBOROUGH: Morgan, we‘re talking about media bias. Also, obviously some people are talking about Hollywood bias, about what went on with the Emmy nominations today. Do you think when...
MORGAN FAIRCHILD, ACTRESS: Joe, I don‘t want to talk about the Emmy nominations. I actually want to talk about—I want to talk about what you were just talking about. Pardon me?
SCARBOROUGH: I wanted to ask you about Hollywood, though. Do you think that if a candidate like John Kerry or before Bill Clinton especially gets support from the Hollywood community, how do you think that plays? Obviously, it helps. Any politician will take money from any source at all.
DREIER: Oh, come on.
SCARBOROUGH: Yes, yes, Dreier, you‘d take John Kerry‘s Hollywood money in a second. How do you think it plays in middle America? Do you think Americans think, gee, I love these actors, I love these actresses, I watch them in my home, if they‘re supporting a candidate, I‘m going to support that candidate? Or do you think that the conservatives that are complaining about Hollywood stars and starlets supporting political candidates just don‘t get it at all?
FAIRCHILD: I think both sides like to complain about whoever is supporting the other side. That‘s what it usually comes down to. But actually, that buzz about Vice President Cheney has been around Washington for quite a while now. I know I was in for the White House Correspondent‘s Ball, and even before that I‘ve heard it with a lot of my political friends. It seems like in a way they‘re just trying to float his ratings, and that article pointed out, they‘re down to 21 percent. Bush‘s is at 39 percent favorability right now.
So they may be looking for a way to ease him out. I just heard it all over Washington. I heard it all over Washington. And, of course, the Republican administration is not going to admit that they‘re even thinking this way.
DREIER: Because it isn‘t going to happen.
FAIRCHILD: No administration would ever admit that they are thinking of dropping a vice president.
DREIER: I think the harshest line in talking about those events show is the one that came from John Leguizamo which I mentioned to you the other night we were on with Jerry Brown and that is this notion of saying Hispanics are to Republicans like roaches are to Raid? Outrageous things said at that program. Again, as Morgan says, I agree. We don‘t want to impinge on anyone‘s First Amendment rights, but that kind of vitriol and hatred I don‘t think really plays an important role in political discourse. The presence of anger ain‘t a platform.
SCARBOROUGH: We‘re going to leave it there.
FAIRCHILD: I actually agree with David on that.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, listen, why don‘t we all join hands sing “Kumbaya.” Everybody‘s been great. You go, baby. Thanks for being with us, Dave and Morgan.
Stick around because coming up, I want to ask you about what the president needs to do to win over women this year.
And later, some Democrats just can‘t let go of the fact that they lost fair and square in 2000. Now they want the United Nations—I‘m not making this up—the United Nations to monitor the U.S. presidential elections this fall. We‘ll talk about that in a second.
SCARBOROUGH: You know, 61 percent of eligible female voters cast a ballot in the 2000 election and Al Gore won the women‘s vote by 11 points. Lifetime Television recently found that half of American women say that neither George Bush nor John Kerry talks enough about women‘s issues. And after hearing that Hillary Clinton was kept from a primetime speaking role at the Democratic National Convention, I asked this question at the end of my real deal last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: And the only question is whether John Kerry will now back down.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: And today he did back down, and he gave Hillary Clinton the mike on primetime opening night. We‘ve got Morgan Fairchild back with us, and we‘re also joined by Star Parker (ph) of Scripps Howard News Service, and Patrice Adcrost, the executive director of “Marie Claire” magazine.
Morgan, let me begin with you. First of all, there was really no way that John Kerry was going to be able to keep Hillary Rodham Clinton out of primetime without alienating a great number of female voters, who really do make up one of his most supportive base. Was there?
FAIRCHILD: Well, quite probably. I‘m happy to see her have a slot there. A little diversity never hurt the old Democratic party.
SCARBOROUGH: Doesn‘t it prove, though, by him putting her back in, just how important the women‘s vote is for a Democratic presidential candidate, that really without that gender gap, without, let‘s say, 8, 9, 10 percent of a gap of women supporting a Democratic candidate over a Republican candidate, chances are good the Democratic candidate is not going to carry the election.
FAIRCHILD: Probably. But the Democratic issues also tend to be ones that resound well with women. They tend to be issues that involve health care, child care, elder care, all kinds of different things about the environment, about education. And so consequently, a lot of women pay a lot of attention to those things and will probably end up voting Democratic. Certainly, some of the swing voters seem to be leaning that way.
SCARBOROUGH: Patrice, let me bring in here because Morgan‘s talked about something that your magazine actually has reported on. According to a new poll by your magazine, women are most concerned about the following issues. 84 percent worry a great deal about health care. 81 percent are concerned about improved education. 59 percent listed environmental damage as a major concern also. So does this bode very poorly for George W. Bush, or does it bode well for John Kerry? What did you find in your survey?
PATRICE ADCROST, EXEC. EDITOR, “MARIE CLAIRE”: Well, in our Gallup poll in the August issue of “Marie Claire” we found that women are very issue-oriented, and frankly, neither party has addressed all of the concerns of women including the fact that one out of every three women in this country is abused in a domestic situation. So I think that our message is that just to get out there and vote. To find out what the issues are that each of the candidates represents, and women are tremendously concerned about health care, as you said, Joe.
SCARBOROUGH: And we keep hearing healthcare over and over again. Is that—obviously, that‘s not only healthcare for themselves and their families and for their mothers and fathers—aging mothers and fathers and children, but also, does abortion play into that health care issue?
ADCROST: Well, let me just add that 40 million people in this country are not insured. So women would rather have a company-sponsored healthcare program than child care, than vacation time, than flex time.
So part of the reason that women are concerned about healthcare is because there are lots of people in this country that do not have anywhere to turn when they get sick.
SCARBOROUGH: And it‘s getting more and more expensive every single month.
SCARBOROUGH: Now, according to another recent poll, John Kerry‘s favorability rating among women is 51 percent. President Bush‘s is 42 percent right now. And, of course, again, as I said before, Al Gore won by 11 points over George Bush in 2000. So, Star, why do Republicans have so much trouble courting women voters?
STAR PARKER, SCRIPPS HOWARD NEWS SERVICE: Well, we have to sell our message. I was just listening to the dialogue you had with the other two ladies. And we have to separate the groups of women that we are talking about. Of course, most women are concerned about healthcare, but it‘s a far stretch to then say that they‘re demanding socialized healthcare.
We have to divide up these women up into groups of single versus married and how they vary on who they think should solve these problems. They are concerns, education, child care, healthcare, many, many other domestic policy issues...
SCARBOROUGH: But Republicans usually lose on those issues, don‘t they?
PARKER: Let me explain why. When you mentioned why we brought Hillary—why the Democrats decided to bring Hillary Clinton to the microphone, is because the Democrats are clearly the entitlement party. What they‘re talking to, and the audience they‘re trying to get, are the single women who, because they don‘t have somebody else to provide for these things, they‘re looking for big government solutions.
But when you look more specifically at married women and who they would prefer to handle some of these concerns, they are looking more at a limited role of government. They are looking more at localized control over their children‘s education and private options to healthcare and some of these other concerns.
So what the Republican Party has to do, in answer to your question, is to reach these women with their message and clarify exactly what the debates are about when it comes to who should provide this child care, who should provide this healthcare, who should provide all of these different services, including Social Security.
When you look at what the studies are saying in terms of marital women, you know, their values are different. They‘re more conservative women once they‘re married. And so we look at the Social Security issue, for instance, you‘re going to find where you see marital household, they would rather have more personal control over their accounts as opposed to the one size fits all Social Security system, as opposed to single women, who really believe government has to play a role because they‘re all by themselves.
SCARBOROUGH: Patrice, I want to ask you about an issue that I always found made a big difference when I was out campaigning. When you talk to women—and it was interesting, when you spoke with women that worked outside the home, that say where are you on abortion, are you pro-life or were you pro-choice? I was pro-life, so I‘d say pro-life. And you could see, boom, the door close. You talk to stay-at-home moms and you ask them—they ask you the same question about abortion, and I‘ve seen candidates say I‘m pro-choice, and there‘s this great divide.
PARKER: They close the door.
SCARBOROUGH: And they close the door on those. Is abortion for women, for a lot of especially active, political women really the key issue?
ADCROST: Ten years ago abortion was more of an issue than it is today. With our recent poll we found that that is not going to be one the major issues. The other issues that you addressed earlier, including education, crime and healthcare are much more on their minds.
PARKER: The reason for that...
SCARBOROUGH: Morgan, Morgan let me ask...
PARKER: Well, get into the reason for that. The reason for that is because abortion, because of ultrasound we know now that it‘s life. We know now that the feminists have totally lied on the abortion issue. And we know also that it‘s just an extended entitlement program. Don‘t worry about the consequences...
FAIRCHILD: Yes, we also know that most women think that it‘s not a right that‘s going to go away.
SCARBOROUGH: And Morgan, is that the issue? For a lot of women, is abortion, whether you‘re a pro-life woman or a pro-choice woman, isn‘t abortion really the key issue for a lot of the more active political women?
FAIRCHILD: For active Democrats, I think it certainly is, and for a certain element of the Republican Party, I think it is. And what you find is that a lot of women, because it‘s been Roe Vs. Wade has been in place for a long time now, they think it‘s set forever, and they don‘t realize that it is one justice away from being overturned and that it‘s steadily being eroded even as we sit here.
I think, one thing that these studies also showed is there‘s a great interest in things that weren‘t even noticed by women voters 10 years ago, which is issues of terrorism, issues of the economy. When some of these studies looked back 10 years ago, the bubble economy was still here.
There are a lot of things that are going to be impacting the women‘s vote this time, beyond just the issue of healthcare and some of the basic ones that had to do with the war, that had to do with terrorism, that had to do with their sons and daughters going off to war, with having to do with questions of how that war was brought about and how it‘s been waged. And I think those are going to play heavily on this election for women.
SCARBOROUGH: Thanks a lot for being with us, Morgan, we really appreciate it.
FAIRCHILD: Thank you.
SCARBOROUGH: And also, thank you, Star Parker, and thank you Patrice Adcrost. We want to follow up with something that Star said, maybe it‘s not affecting the electorate right now when it comes to abortion, but a lot of the ultrasound pictures, just talking to people, they‘re saying, man, it‘s really changing the way I think about abortion. Well, we‘ll see how it affects voters this fall.
Straight ahead on SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY, much more. A huge fight on the House floor turns ugly, because one Congresswoman still says the Republicans sold the election in 2000. We‘re going to show you her remarks that got her in big trouble. She said a word on the House floor that you just ain‘t supposed to say.
And the NAACP says that black conservatives are just, quote, puppets of white people. Education Secretary Rod Paige is in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY and he disagrees. We‘ll talk to him in just a minute.
SCARBOROUGH: A fight breaks out in the United States Congress. Profanity-laced statements shoot across the chambers in the war of politics and words is on. We‘re going to get to the latest news there and whats hapening in Washington. But first, let‘s get the latest headlines from MSNBC news desk.
SCARBOROUGH: A fight breaks out in the United States Congress, profanity laced statements shoot across the chambers, and the war of politics and words is on. We‘re going to get to the latest news there and what‘s happening in Washington.
But first, let‘s get the latest headlines from MSNBC News desk.
SCARBOROUGH: You know, late today a fire erupted on the House floor when a Florida Democrat screamed that Republicans, quote, “stole the election in 2000.” The row started after House Democrats asked the United Nations to monitor the November elections in the U.S. Republicans are pushing an amendment banning the U.N. oversight of any U.S. elections in the future.
This was Congresswoman Corrine Brown‘s reaction.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. CORRINE BROWN (D), FLORIDA: I come from Florida, where you and others participated in what I call the “United States coup d‘etat.” We need to make sure that it doesn‘t happen again. Over and over again, after the election when you stole the election, you came back here and said get over it. No, we‘re not going to get over it. And we want verification from the world!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The lady‘s words should be taken down. She said that you stole an election. I believe that those are not...
BROWN: It‘s a coup d‘etat. And it‘s a fact. You participated in it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The words should be taken down.
BROWN: You participated in it!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All members will suspend.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: With me now to talk about the House floor rumble is Representative Tom Feeney, another congressman from Florida who was speaker of the House during the 2000 election in Florida and during the recount.
Tom, I want you to respond. Is Florida‘s election system so dysfunctional that U.N. observation is required?
REP. TOM FEENEY ®, FLORIDA: Well, lord knows, as a matter of fact, we passed a comprehensive election reform to fix some of the technical problems that occurred. Corrine Brown actually praised the Florida legislature for what we did. The federal government has provided funds for states like Florida; Corrine Brown praised that action as well.
Corrine is an old friend from way back. We don‘t agree on much. She is entitled to her opinions, even if sometimes they‘re hysterical. But she‘s not entitled to create her own facts as we go.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, you say, “facts as we go.” She said that there was a coup d‘etat in Florida and that the Republicans stole the election. I mean what—after the dust settled, what did newspapers and everybody else find about this election?
FEENEY: Every single independent newspaper investigation showed the same thing, that there were a majority of votes cast for George W. Bush. There were absolutely no facts whatsoever that anybody was denied access deliberately at ballot places, other than the Democratic lawyer‘s attempt, you‘ll remember, to disqualify overseas ballots of the military and our soldiers in uniform.
And you know, Joe, the notion that United Nations should take over the elections process is just bizarre, it‘s an effort to repeal the Declaration of Independence, and put us under some one world government by a bunch of tin-horned dictators, theocrats. The United Nations is a very undemocratic body if you look at its membership by and large.
SCARBOROUGH: But you know, we keep hearing, Congressman, from Michael Moore and Corrine Brown that Republicans stole the election in 2000. Do you think this is going be used in the coming months to try to generate votes for the Democrats?
FEENEY: That‘s all this is about. They are trying to whip up some hysteria not based on facts. But they are trying to get people into a frenzy, where they won‘t listen to arguments, they won‘t listen to rationality, they won‘t vote with their head, they will just be in this passionate frenzy of hysteria. And they‘ll go out and they hope to drive-up turnout. I hope average Americans will listen to more civil, responsible debates about issues, about who‘s going to be best on security, who‘s best on domestic economic growth.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, we‘ll see, Tom Feeney. Certainly all those that waited and loved “Fahrenheit 9/11” didn‘t listen to rational, cool thoughts. But maybe they will, as it gets closer to the election.
Thanks for being with us Congressman Tom Feeney, as always.
FEENEY: Joe, great to talk to you.
SCARBOROUGH: Now, let‘s bring in a Malik Zulu Shabazz, he‘s of the Black Lawyers for Justice.
Malik, do you still believe, as Corrine Brown, that Republicans stole the presidential election in Florida in 2000?
MALKI ZULU SHABAZZ, BLACK LAWYERS FOR JUSTICE: I know, as many in this country know, really, of all races, that yes, Bush and those stole the election. They disenfranchised, intimidated, purged the voter rolls of not just black voters, voters that were against them. Yes. Many in this country believe that that election in Florida was stolen. Al Gore won the popular vote.
SCARBOROUGH: He won the popular vote, but certainly the supreme...
SHABAZZ: And he won Florida.
SCARBOROUGH: You think? Well, you know, George Bush though, actually won Florida, didn‘t he? I mean, as you know—and this is what I can‘t believe. We keep hearing this.
SHABAZZ: Several independent fact-finding commissions have come out and said that if all the votes were counted, and others have come and found that if those who were purged, who were not to be purged would have been counted, that clearly Gore would have won the election in Florida. It was cut short.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, Malik, let me read you a quote from the “Miami Herald,” this was in November of 2001. This is what the “Miami Herald” said after the election.
“It was a 10-month investigation that revealed what we already knew. Bush won. And “The New York Times,” “The Washington Post,” the Tribune Company, “The Wall Street Journal,” CNN, Associated Press, the “St. Petersburg Times,” the “Palm Beach Post” spent all that time and money examining the Florida ballots from the 2000 election and then relegated the story. Even if Al Gore had prevailed at the U.S. Supreme Court, the limited recount he sought still would have come out in George Bush‘s favor.”
Now, doesn‘t it get any more clear than that? Does it?
SHABAZZ: Well, that‘s the “Miami Herald.” And there are other civil rights...
SCARBOROUGH: And “The New York Times.” And “The Washington Post” and the Associated Press.
SHABAZZ: But the police there were stopping people from getting to the polls. Many were purged and were not allowed to vote when they got to the polls. When you count those factors in, as well as other irregularities at the polling place, clearly Gore won and I‘m not a Gore fan.
SCARBOROUGH: All right. Thanks so much Malik Shabazz. As always, we appreciate you coming in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY.
And after the break, I‘ve got issues with Whoopi Goldberg being fired by Slim Fast. What did they think they were getting when they hired her in the first place? That‘s coming up right after this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): Tonight‘s SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY “Challenge,” what award has Oscar winner Whoopi Goldberg not collected? Is it A: a Tony, B: an Emmy or C: a Grammy? The answer coming up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): In tonight‘s SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY “Challenge,” we asked what award has Whoopi Goldberg not collected? The answer is B. In addition to her Oscar for the film “Ghost,” Goldberg won a Tony as a producer for “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” and a Grammy for “Whoopi Goldberg,” the original Broadway show recording.
Now back to Joe.
SCARBOROUGH: That stumped us all, didn‘t it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
SCARBOROUGH: I thought Grammy. Not you? Of course not, Binder. Binder knows everything.
Well, I‘m Joe. I dig a pony. And I got issues. I‘ve got issues with Guess jeans; their newest ad debuted with supermodel Paris Hilton. Paris stars in “The Simple Life 2” and she recently dropped a lawsuit against her ex for the home video sex tape she was selling, cleverly titled “One Night in Paris. Paris got $400,000 for dropping the suit, plus a cut of the profits.
Now, this porno launched her career and drew attention to her first reality show, and now she‘s got a sequel. And now she‘s also got a modeling contract. Hey, do you remember back in the good old days, when parents across the country were bothered by companies hiring models who were too skinny? Well, look out. Because that heroin-chic fad appears to have been placed by the heroin-chic porn star thing. Parents, cover your daughter‘s eyes.
And John Kerry challenged President Bush to tell Americans whether he read the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq‘s WMDs before going to war. A fair and thoughtful question. But when asked whether John Kerry had actually read the National Intelligence Estimate, the Kerry camp confessed that he had not himself! How honest. How hypocritical.
The report was completed by the Senate Intel Committee to provide the latest, most independent information available on whether Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. This, before Senator Kerry was to cast his vote in the Iraq War. You know, Senator Kerry really does need to tell the families of American soldiers why he voted to send their loved ones to war without first getting the facts.
Senator Kerry also needs to explain to Americans how he can attack President Bush for not having all the facts, when Senator Kerry himself skipped out on his final exam on Iraq‘s WMDs. So how exactly did Senator Kerry know that Saddam had WMDs, as he said before his vote? If he didn‘t even read the Senate‘s final report on that issue.
Finally, will somebody from “The New York Times” explain why the story was buried on 16-A, while unfounded rumors about Dick Cheney were splashed across Page 1? And I‘ll be anxiously awaiting that answer from “The Times.”
Now, by judging from your emails, you‘ve got issues with my support for Whoopi Goldberg. Of course, as you know, Whoopi lost her job as a spokeswoman for Slim Fast, after the “New York Post” describes the scene at a recent Kerry fundraiser. Quote, “Waving a bottle of wine, she fired off a stream of vulgar sexual wordplays on Bush‘s name, in a riff about female genitalia.” And of course, it doesn‘t take a law degree to connect those dots, does it, friends?
But here‘s where Whoopi differs with somebody, like former MCI spokesman Danny Glover, with whom I had great issues last year. First, Danny Glover appeared to be sober when he compared American troops to terrorists who flew planes into the Twin Towers. Second, Danny Glover appeared to be sober when he signed a letter praising Fidel Castro as a great liberator.
You know, Slim Fast knew exactly what they were getting when Whoopi was whooping it up for her audience. She wasn‘t trying to make a coherent political statement. She was trying to get a cheap laugh. And even though I never really understood that whole Ted Danson thing, I still love you, Whoopi. Just leave the wine bottle at home next time.
With me now to compare potty-mouth comedians, the corporate shells who praise murderous tyrants is James Hirsen. He‘s the author of “Tales From the Left Coast.”
James, I got a lot of emails. People were mad at me last night. They wanted to compare what Whoopi Goldberg did with what Danny Glover said last year, when he compared U.S. troops to 9/11 terrorists.
JAMES HIRSEN, AUTHOR, “TALES FROM THE LEFT COAST”: People have issues.
SCARBOROUGH: There‘s no comparison here. This lady was just trying to get a couple of cheap laughs. Aren‘t you afraid that by firing her that we‘re going to chill First Amendment rights?
HIRSEN: I really am not, Joe. I mean, look. This is a business deal. It‘s between one brand and another brand. You‘ve got the Whoopi Goldberg brand, which is associated, by the way, with some movies she‘s done. And I think she ought to dust off that nun‘s habit, because this thing tarnished her image.
SCARBOROUGH: OK. But James, look. OK, Dennis Miller right now is warming up crowds for President Bush. Recently, he likened Senator Robert Byrd to a demented godfather at Thanksgiving. He called James Carville, a mucket—a Muppet accidentally watched on hot. And he said, asking Bill Clinton to write an honest book is like asking Britney Spears to sing a cappella.
Now let me ask you, James. By this new standard, should Dennis Miller lose his job at CNBC?
HIRSEN: Well, if Dennis Miller‘s agent cut a deal for him to be a spokesperson for a product that was sold in West Virginia, and the people of West Virginia began to write in to that company, then that corporate officer would have a duty to the shareholders to basically end that agreement.
SCARBOROUGH: So you—so you...
HIRSEN: That‘s very much like what happened to Whoopi Goldberg.
SCARBOROUGH: So you...
HIRSEN: You know what, Joe...
SCARBOROUGH: ... think it was OK for ESPN to say fire Rush Limbaugh because he talked about a quarterback?
HIRSEN: Well, you know, that‘s a kind of a different issue, because Rush Limbaugh was actually a personality on the air, much like you are. I mean when we have celebrities speak to sell products, they are hired. They‘re paid the big bucks to move the products.
And whether it‘s fair or not, Whoopi Goldberg became a symbol of this whole hate fest, where her colleagues on stage called the president “a liar,” called him “a killer,” called him “a cheap thug;” the leader of the free world at a time of war.
And so I think—and by the way, the president of Slim Fast, he wants to defeat George Bush. He gave $1.2 million to defeat George Bush. He would not fire Whoopi Goldberg if it wasn‘t for the fact that he got substantial complaints and it compromised the ability for him to sell his products in a free market, a free enterprise.
SCARBOROUGH: And it still is a free market.
James Hirsen, thanks for being here. And you know what? I can‘t wait for the Kerry camp to give us full disclosure and release that tape.
HIRSEN: Yes. I‘d like to see the video.
SCARBOROUGH: Yes, I would, too. Thanks for being with us.
And up next, the secretary of education had some choice words for the NAACP. Rod Paige is in SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY to defend conservative African-Americans. And he isn‘t happy with what the NAACP is saying. That‘s coming up next.
SCARBOROUGH: Will liberal radio survive in the U.S. of A.? Well, Air America‘s report card comes out tomorrow. And we‘ll tell you whether they passed or failed. That‘s tomorrow night on SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY. But stick around; we have much more straight ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN KERRY (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I will be a president who is truly a uniter, not one who seeks to divide one nation by race or riches, or by any other label. And you know something? The president may be too busy to speak to you now, but I‘ve got news for you. He‘s going to have plenty of time after November 2.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Good line.
John Kerry attacked President Bush for not attending the NAACP convention this week. Should African-Americans be outraged at the president, or should they be outraged at the NAACP? Earlier, I spoke with President Bush‘s Secretary Of Education Rod Paige, a life long member of the NAACP. And in today‘s “Wall Street Journal” this is what he wrote.
“The NAACP leadership has managed to take a proud, effective organization in a totally new direction: naked partisan politics, pure and simple.”
I began by asking the secretary about this new direction for a very old organization.
ROD PAIGE, SECRETARY OF EDUCATION: The NAACP is for the advancement of colored people. But the contemporary leadership is conducted as if it is for the advancement of one particular political party.
SCARBOROUGH: You know, you, of course, are a proud member of the president‘s cabinet. I want to read a quote to you that Julian Bond said several years ago, as the president was putting his cabinet together.
SCARBOROUGH: Mr. Bond said President George W. Bush, “has selected nominees,” talking about you, “from the Taliban wing of American politics, appeased the wretched right, and chosen cabinet officials whose devotion to the Confederacy is nearly canine in its uncritical affection.”
What does it mean to you to be called a member of the Confederacy by the leader of the largest African-American group in America?
PAIGE: Well, clearly never before in the history of that proud organization have we heard that kind of corrosive language. And clearly, it is not designed to solve problems. That type of language is designed to get headlines and news stories. So it isn‘t a problem-solving attitude.
The civil rights—the civil rights issue of our day is the academic achievement gap between the African-American community students and Anglo students. And this is what we should be dealing with. And the president is providing leadership with that with the No Child Left Behind Act. And I would think that this should be supported by a proud organization like the NAACP.
SCARBOROUGH: But Mr. Secretary, leaders of the NAACP are saying that test scores from minorities are going down, the number of minorities going into colleges are going down. They‘re claiming that President Bush has been a failure when it comes to educating the underprivileged, and also, African-Americans and other minority students.
PAIGE: It‘s very easy to say that. But all you have to do is look at the data. Look at the record. For the last two decades, African-American students have been lagging behind by an average of about 30 points on the NAPE in almost every category. Fourth grade reading, eighth grade reading, fourth grade math, eight grade math; this is a problem that the president is solving with the No Child Left Behind Act.
SCARBOROUGH: I want to play for you what NAACP Chairman Kweisi Mfume said when he talked about how President Bush has neglected the NAACP. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KWEISI MFUME, PRESIDENT, NAACP: He came into Baltimore four years ago as a candidate. Was received graciously. Got many interruptions for applause. He spoke for about 20 minutes. Talked about the failure of the GOP in the past, to work closely on the issue of civil rights. And African-Americans said those days were over and the party of Lincoln was about to become the party of Lincoln again. And that was pretty much the last we heard of George Bush.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCARBOROUGH: Has George Bush let the NAACP and other African-Americans down by not going back and speaking to this group since 2001?
PAIGE: Well, actually, the president would have to answer for that himself.
But let me ask you a question. Do you think any reasonable person would want to go into an environment that is described by the language you just used recently, that you just explained to me?
Two years ago—since two years ago the language has heated up and become more corrosive and more finger pointing and damaging towards the president. And not at all the type of courtesy you‘d expect to be extended to the president of the United States. And so the president can speak to whether or not he would go into that kind of environment. And I think any reasonable person would draw that same conclusion.
SCARBOROUGH: All right, Mr. Secretary. Thank you so much for being with us tonight. We greatly appreciate it.
And that‘s it for tonight‘s show. But make sure to tune in to Imus tomorrow morning at 6 a.m. Eastern, when he talks to Senator Joe Biden. That‘s tomorrow morning on “IMUS IN THE MORNING.”
Thanks a lot for being with us tonight. We‘ll see you tomorrow.
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