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Hugh Hewitt Book Club

Here is the transcript (media) of David Bernstein (media) interviewing Hugh (media) on the radio (media).

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HH: Joined now by David Bernstein of the Boston Phoenix. David, welcome to the program.

DB: Hey, thank you very much. I hope my connection is clear enough and everything.

HH: You’re great. How do we know you’re really with the Boston Phoenix?

DB: Because I’m really writing. Go on the website, and it’s, and find me there. I guess I could be posing. I don’t…

HH: What did you write last week?

DB: Last week I went up…I was up in New Hampshire following around Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in their campaigning up there, and I wrote about they were trying to…how it was an unusual type of New Hampshire campaigning because it’s these big event things, rather than what we typically see at this time of trying to sort of have smaller meetings with the more influential folks in the party.

HH: Did you catch the Geffen comment in the Maureen Dowd column this morning?

DB: I did, and I’ve seen that it’s been making quite a ruckus back and forth all day. They were both asked about it, I don’t know if you had a chance to watch any of the forum in Carson City today, where most of the Democratic candidates were at…

HH: I haven’t…no, we Tivo’d it, and we’ll get the tape and cut it up. I figured if I played that on the radio, I could kill most of my audience. They might just nod off and go off the road, and stuff like that. So we’ve always got to distil that stuff down.

DB: I think that’s fair to say, especially because it was a pretty heavily union…it was a union-sponsored event, and a heavily union audience. So their reaction was probably different from your audience’s reaction, I think.

HH: Well, I doubt…you know, boring is boring in any language, and I actually think that had to be as dull as a serial…come on, you tell me. Mike Gravel was there. Did you know he was running for president?

DB: I will say this. They claimed that the order was done by lots, but Gavel was last, and Kucinich was next to last, so…

HH: I know. If they were looking for…they would have put Dennis, whose been on this show, we love Dennis. We have, even, Raelian music that we play for him when he shows up. He’s entertaining, but not…is there no R in Gravel?

DB: I think that there…you know what? I forget. He was once a Senator, you know.

HH: I know, but how old is he? I thought…I almost called 1-800-IS-HE-DEAD, because I thought that guy…

DB: You know, as a matter of fact, your folks might want to look into him, because he actually, if I’m not mistaken, he believes in the flat tax.

HH: My folks? What do…my folks? What do you mean?

DB: No, your listeners, I mean.

HH: My listeners include the entire political spectrum.

DB: They do…as a matter of fact, I listen to your show online once in a while. We don’t, I don’t believe it’s carried here in Boston.

HH: Oh, yes it is. It’s on WTTT, take the T home.

DB: Well, now I know.

HH: Now would you find out the frequency…I can never remember the frequency.

DB: I will…

HH: I think it’s 1000, so you should write a big, glowing review about it. So David, how long have you been with the Phoenix?

DB: I’ve been with the Phoenix three and a half years.

HH: You know, I used to read the Phoenix, you were probably eight at the time when I was a Harvard undergrad, and Marty Baron was writing…not Marty Baron, he’s the editor of the Globe, but Marty…who was the…

DB: Barone. Well, there’ve been a lot of writers…

HH: Yeah, but he went over to the Harvard Institute of Politics, and now I can’t remember. So you’ve been there three and a half years? What did you do before that?

DB: A lot of…I used to freelance, I’ve written for a lot of publications, been all over…I’ve been in journalism for about fifteen years.

HH: Are you a lefty?

DB: I tend towards that side, yeah.

HH: Did you vote for Kerry in the last election?

DB: I did.

HH: Yeah, did you vote for Kennedy in the last Senate election?

DB: I did, yeah.

HH: You vote for Duval? I gave Duval money.

DB: You did?

HH: Yeah, he’s a classmate of mine. Of course.

DB: Oh, yeah. Well, I don’t want to talk about who I voted for in the primary, and that…

HH: Oh, like you’re fooling us.

DB: No, no. The primary’s very interesting. We had a couple of very good candidates.

HH: Oh, the primary. I can understand…what about…but you did vote for Duval over the Lt. Governor?

DB: Over Lt. Governor Healey, I did, yeah.

HH: Did anyone at the Phoenix vote for the Lt. Governor?

DB: Oh, yeah. We actually have quite a diversity of…we’re not just a, you know, simple, you know, easily classified group, either.

HH: Oh, come on.

DB: I mean, our editorials tend to run that way, but…

HH: Who’s your conservative?

DB: Who’s our conservative? Right now, in the news writing, we don’t really have a conservative. I mean, we’re a very tiny staff, but we’re actually between…we’ve had them. We’ve had moderates, we’ve had conservatives.

HH: Well, hey, you’ve been there for what? Thirty years? I’m sure you had one sneak in at one point. But as I recall the Phoenix, you guys were always to the left of the left.

DB: Very much tend to be, yeah.

HH: Yeah, very progressive. So how can I help you?

DB: Well, all right. So I’m doing an article for next week. But I find it interesting that Mitt Romney’s having some trouble with some of the conservatives wondering whether they can trust him on certain issues, and now your book, which I’ve been waiting for, for some time, is just about to hit, and it could be fortuitous timing, or you know, it could work out well for him or not. I’m just, I’m curious to get your take about where things stand, and about what you think of him, and what you think of the current situation with the race. So first of all, I wanted to know how long have you known the Governor? How did you get the idea to write about him? How long has that been going on? And how did you go about delving into him to write about?

HH: Well, I’ll tell you that story. When we get to the break, we have to go to a break.

DB: Fair enough.

HH: The fact of the matter is, I started working on Mormons in the mid-90’s when I did a national series for PBS called Searching For God In America, and one of the guests I interviewed was an apostle of the LDS Church, Neal Maxwell. And so I went over to Salt Lake City, and did a lot of taping of interviews with Elder Maxwell, and we became buddies. He was a very, very wonderful guy, he was a political junkee, and as I said, I’m never going to believe what they believe, and they’re never going to believe what I believe, but there’s no sense we can’t sit down and have a good chat about it. And so that became a friendship so much…and so, actually, Utah’s PBS station invited me to come back and do some more interviews with Elder Maxwell for the state broadcast, which I did, and we just stayed in touch, and I did a lot of research on the LDS faith prior to that series, continued up with it, and there’s the music, which means I’ll be right back. My guest is interviewing me, David Bernstein. I just want you Americans to hear how this works. He’s a very, very, very tricky lefty, and he’s going to try and get me to give away my book before it comes out, but I won’t fall for that, but I still enjoy talking to lefties, and he’s very transparent, so I think we’re getting along fine.

– – – –

HH: David, how long’s it been in Boston?

DB: It just had its 40th anniversary, as a matter of fact.

HH: And it was really one of the pioneers, along with the Village Voice, of the form. Is it owned by the Village Voice now?

DB: No, it’s actually one of the last remaining independently owned papers of its kind, still owned by the Mendich family here in Boston.

HH: Now is the rise of internet classifieds killing you guys, because that’s what you folks used to make a fortune off of, wasn’t it?

DB: Yeah, well, you know, I’m not on the business end of things, but I know that that’s a major issue of how to transfer that into the internet world. It’s a major issue for the paper’s business model, yeah.

HH: Yeah, Craig’s List is just killing everybody. And how’s the Globe doing? They’re bleeding out, too, aren’t they?

DB: Oh, it’s terrible. I mean, it cut staff tremendously. We’d like to, you know, folks here in the city would like to see that get back to local ownership somehow, too, you know, because it’s owned by the New York Times now, and we just feel like, you know, people, if the ownership was closer to home, they might not be cutting as many jobs as, you know, because a good newspaper, whatever you may think of it, good newspapers matter to a city.

HH: Oh, I agree. And I think the Globe could…I thought Marty Baron is a pretty good editor, and Marty ran the L.A. Times Orange County edition…

DB: Yeah.

HH: And we crossed swords a few times out here, but he’s a good newspaper guy.

DB: Yup.

HH: And they’ve got some talent. They’ve got what? One conservative there?

DB: Oh, they’ve got…

HH: Jeff Jacoby, right?

DB: Jeff Jacoby, who’s the…

HH: That’s it.

DB: But they’ve got, you know, between them and the Herald, you know, it shows how important a two newspaper, having two thriving newspapers in a town is, and you know, we’d hate to see, we hate them see them shrink, you know, in terms of having fewer reporters, there’s less coverage of issues, and so forth.

HH: What do you think of Jules Crittendon?

DB: You read his blog?

HH: Every day.

DB: Yeah, I read his blog. You know, he has his point of view, you know, I mean, I don’t have anything against him. You know, I don’t always, I don’t necessarily agree with his point of view, but he’s, you know, he’s a smart man, he’s a smart man, and he’s been there, he knows stuff, he’s not just talking the talk from afar. You know, he’s a real, you know, he knows what he’s talking about.

HH: Yeah, he’s been a journalist a long time, and I think he probably has the blog that moved the highest the fastest in the last 12 months, in terms of reach, because he really is, he backs it up. He’s very talented. So anyway, back to Romney. So I got to know Mormons, loved the story. When he declared his candidacy, or it began to get into the print that he might be running, I thought I might be able to use my knowledge of Mormons to look at this, because I knew it would be an issue. And I pitched the idea to the New Yorker, Dave Remick, and he didn’t bite, thought nah, I’m not going go…so I went to Regnery, with whom I had a book contract, and said what do you think about this as a second book? And they loved it, and so they said go forth. And it’s a little bit different from what I’ve done before. I’ve done reporting for magazine pieces and columns and for the radio, but I hadn’t done reporting for books. Most of my books have been opinion books, and so I reported this, and I know his brother-in-law down in San Diego, and I talked to him, and then made an appeal, met Romney for the first time probably a year and a half ago at a fundraiser for cystic fibrosis, that his brother was being honored at, a big cystic fibrosis activist…

DB: Yeah.

HH: And then got into it, and he agreed to talk to me, and I’ve been, you know, basically interviewing everyone I could find for the last year, and it comes out in three weeks.

DB: So…

HH: And by the way, you said he had a bad week. I don’t think he had a bad week. Why do you think he had a bad week?

DB: Well, I’m not necessarily saying that he had a bad week, I’m saying that there’s been a lot the last few days of questions about his stance, particularly focusing on the abortion stand, and sort of looking at what he has said in the past at different times. And one of the things I wanted to ask you on that issue is, you know, he’s given an explanation of how his views have changed, and I don’t think the important thing is sort of when he said what, when, you know, but when people for whom the abortion issue is an important one, are listening to him? They want to know whether he has integrity in what he is saying to them right now, that he believes what he’s saying to them, and will follow through. And what did you find in your, you know, in talking to him and researching him that would help people answer that question about his integrity, and believing what he says to them?

HH: There’s a whole chapter in the book on the life issue, and it’s pretty detailed and at length, and so I won’t go into detail and make people read the book, obviously. But I’ll say this. After the book went to press, Jim Bopp’s endorsement came out. That’s just huge, and he has a piece at today. Did you see that?

DB: Yup.

HH: And…

DB: I did see…yeah, go ahead.

HH: And so the Bopp endorsement matters a great deal, but what I really think matters more than any of that, that whole meme is not something I hear a lot of, and I talk to a lot of conservatives. In fact, I give speeches to pro-life groups, and pro-life groups love the idea of someone who’s come their way.

DB: Right.

HH: They don’t care if it was two years ago, four years ago, six years ago, eight years ago. If they have someone coming their way…because they realize they need that. That’s the most important thing in the world, so that while lefties always come up their story like Al Gore, or Richard Gephardt, or you know, you’ll find a bunch of them, how they became pro-choice from being pro-life. That’s always welcomed on the left, and that’s an evolution that said hooray. When it happens in the opposite direction, I hear mainstream media people questioning the individual’s sincerity in a way that…did you ever write anything about Al Gore’s change of heart or Richard Gephardt’s change of heart on abortion?

DB: As a matter of fact, I did write about Gephardt’s, yeah.

HH: And what…did you find Democrats who said oh, I don’t trust him on the issue?

DB: Some. I mean, it was split.

HH: See, I’ve never seen a piece like that. You’re probably the first one I’ve ever heard of writing a piece like that. So I think that meme is really kind of like the Mormon meme, like the meme about his gay rights stance in 1994. That’s absolutely made up. There’s no inconsistency whatsoever in his record on that.

DB: I agree on that.

HH: And so I think a lot of this is Romney and Rudy scare the living daylights out of the mainstream media, either of them, and that you’re going to see sort of alternating weeks of Rock’m Sock’m robots, and one week, they’re going to go after…you guys, and you guys being the left in the mainstream media, are going to go after the blue robot, and they’re going to be hitting each other, and then the next week, you’re going to go after the red robot. And you’re…if I could figure out why you are so afraid, I think…who you were more afraid of, I think the Republicans would nominate them. But that’s going to take a while to sort out. By the way, I haven’t endorsed him. I’m not…

DB: No, no, I’m aware of that, yeah.

HH: I haven’t endorsed him or Rudy. In fact, I’m going to talk to Rudy tomorrow. I think they’re both tremendous candidates, and I like the fact, I think I can say this with great certainty, if you lined up every would-be candidate right now, the class in terms of knowledge, energy, ability to handle the world which is so complex, is Rudy and Romney, and they’re both not D.C. people, and I think that’s going to matter a lot.

DB: Right. Tell me why, what you found in terms of Romney’s belief, because you know, your book, and you’re looking to him centers on his belief, his religious belief, and how much of what he brings to politics comes from that religious belief system, do you think?

HH: Great question leading into the break, guarantees that the listeners will be there when we come back.

– – – –

HH: David, when we went to break, you’d asked me about the Mormon thing. Before I do that, I want to go back to the issue about Romney’s evolution on life. You’ve covered Hillary, and you’ve covered Governor Romney. So my question is who’s changed more on the issue: Romney on life, or Hillary on the war, and in what period of time?

DB: Well, it’s a fair question, and I’m not here defending Hillary. As a matter of fact, I’ve bashed Hillary about a fair amount myself. She has, I think, changed positions on the war, and changing positions on something I don’t think is necessarily a bad thing. And I think that the…that when someone changes positions, like we were saying before, I think that the question for a voter becomes, you know, if the candidate is changing towards where you stand on the issue, the question becomes is this just something that they’re saying and not really believing? How do I know that there’s an integrity behind that, a sincerity behind that? And I think that’s the question that some people are asking about Mitt Romney.

HH: And so when you see…do you see the mainstream media, of which your are a corollary. The Phoenix is almost MSM, but it’s avowedly lefty in most of its positions.

DB: So close.

HH: So close.

DB: We’re so close to mainstream.

HH: Could be so far, but so close. So do you think the mainstream media has covered Hillary’s flip-flop on the war in anywhere near the detail or with the intensity that they have covered the alleged change of position by Romney, although it’s been awfully consistent for many years?

DB: No, I…I think that they have covered Hillary’s difficulty with the war position. I mean certainly, in her early campaigning, I mean, I certainly wrote about her difficulty with the Democratic audiences that she was meeting with in New Hampshire, and I saw that others were, too. I think that she is being held to that same…

HH: Okay, we might…let me ask you about this. Do you think that the intensity of scrutiny on Obama has been the same as the intensity of scrutiny on Romney?

DB: No.

HH: Why not?

DB: Not yet.

HH: Why not?

DB: Well, I think that that’s a fair question.

HH: Well, it’s because the media’s overwhelmingly liberal, isn’t it?

DB: No, I don’t think that…

HH: Oh, David, don’t ruin your credibility. You don’t have to defend them.

DB: No, I don’t think…I think that you will see a great deal of scrutiny of Obama. I think that it has not happened yet. I think that some of it may have to do with…I mean, I think there’s a lot of things. I think you haven’t seen the kind of scrutiny of Giuliani yet that you will see.

HH: But Giuliani was in front of the New York media for eight years. That’s the toughest local beat in the world. Romney’s had you guys all over him, so the one who is least investigated and closest to the presidency is Barack Obama. And therefore, doesn’t that mean that the media ought to be drilling down on him? Because you know, Romney’s been vetted for a long time.

DB: I agree that Obama should be vetted, absolutely, and he should go through the wringer, and he will be. I think that he absolutely will be.

HH: But why not, again, since we already know most…everything you know about Giuliani has been in the newspapers a hundred times, we’ve got Youtube videos, ditto with Romney, McCain’s covered to death, Hillary’s got like a 24/7 watch on her and anything she says. Why does Obama get a free pass? I suggest if you’ve got to limit all the alternatives, there’s got to be a reason, is that the media’s in love with him, and they want him to be president.

DB: Well, I don’t think that’s the case, but we’ll see. If over the next several months there continues to be nothing investigative written about Obama, then we can assess it from there. I think that the media’s just getting started in assessing Obama. He’s very new to them, and they’re just getting started looking into him.

HH: But David, that’s…I’ve got to answer your question. We’ll keep coming back. I’m not stiffing you. But that just defies explanation when you’ve got this very interesting guy. We don’t know what he did in the legislature, we don’t know what his positions were, which by the way, were pretty run of the mill hard left in the Daley machine.

DB: I actually think that because I have to some degree looked into him, and I think a lot of that stuff has been looked into by the local press there, and by some of the Washington press, but I think that the trouble Obama’s likely to run into is that he is not as progressive on the issues as a lot of the early activist Democrats…

HH: Got a for instance for me?

DB: …assume.

HH: Got a for instance?

DB: Yeah, he’s pro-death penalty, there’s one.

HH: Oh, that is always…anything else?

DB: There’s plenty. There’s plenty of issues on business, on corporations, on…I’m not saying whether I agree with him or disagree with him on those issues, but there are a lot of issues where I’m telling you where I’ve seen him talking to audiences that suddenly find that…

HH: Okay, we’ll come right back.

– – – –

HH: I want to get to your questions, David. You asked two breaks ago, and we got deterred about the disparate treatment here.

DB: Yeah, you’ve got to let me interview you now.

HH: I know.

DB: You’ve got to answer my questions.

HH: It’s just give and take, and my guess is, you won’t be surprised. He’s a good Mormon, he’s a faithful Mormon, he’s not going to attempt to be other than that. And the details of that, I think, are fascinating. I think the book is going to be very widely received and greeted as fair, full and complete in the questions that I ask and that the Governor answers. I don’t want to get into the specifics, I want to sell books, obviously. And it took a lot of work to put it together. But he’s a thorough-going LDS member in good standing. Now I found that I’m certain of all the politicians I’ve ever talked to, and I’ve been interviewing politicians since 1989, and I worked for them before that, my confidence about a lack of scandal in someone’s background is highest with regards to Mitt Romney, when we talk about personal scandal. Do you agree with that assessment?

DB: I do, as a matter of fact.

HH: Yeah, I think…

DB: I don’t know highest of all the…everyone I’ve known, but yes, his confidence is very high.

HH: I mean, you can tie. You can be tied for first.

DB: Absolutely.

HH: Mike Dukakis is another one. You know, I just don’t think Mike Dukakis had any whiff of scandal about him at all.

DB: Yup, yup.

HH: And so, I think part of that comes from his being a man of religious belief and of great character. Now I am uneasy with some aspects…in fact, let me play for you a conversation between John Huntsman, great industrialist of Utah, and Neil Cavuto that occurred today, that just gives me the creeps, and I like Neil a lot, but it’s just, I think we’re sliding past a bold line in American politics that we ought not to go past. Here it is:

NC: Why doesn’t he take on the Mormon issue more, and tell what it’s all about?

JH: Neil, I think the Mormon issue is an issue that is so simple, that many of us who are part of that faith, there’s 12 million of us…

HH: Okay, that’s enough, that’s enough. Why doesn’t he…that kind of question, why doesn’t he take on the black issue, why doesn’t he take on the Catholic issue, you know, what do you think, David? Didn’t you think we were past that fifty years ago?

DB: Yes.

HH: And so part of my book is an argument about walking…you know, Jacob Weisberg wrote a piece, which was as bigoted a piece of mainstream media writing that I have seen. And I think the Mormons may be the last religious minority about whom it is okay to do this in America.

DB: I don’t disagree with you. I think that the religion, in that sense, should be a non-issue, and I think ultimately, it probably will be. I’m more interested in sort of the, I don’t know if you want to say positive asset, but just sort of how it informs him, you know, what does he…you know, I don’t think that most religious people of, for instance, Evangelicals, have any problems saying my religious beliefs inform my…

HH: No, he doesn’t, either. For example, Mormons have a huge emphasis on service. I mean, just out of…and that’s very evident in Mitt Romney’s past, present, and I suspect would be in his presidency as well. They also have a great emphasis on giving. You know, they’re a tithing sect. And as such, you don’t have a Temple pass unless you tithe, for example. And so I think he walks the walk, and so that will inform people. It’s the stuff I don’t like…I’m with Ben Franklin on this. Have you read Walter Isaacson’s biography of Ben Franklin?

DB: I haven’t, actually.

HH: Oh, it’s a grand book. He subscribed to the opening of every Church, and the Synagogue in Philadelphia, believed that religious tolerance was the hallmark of the new country, and that inquiries into religious beliefs were a pestilence that could spread very easily. And I think a lot of the media are eager to have this particular pestilence spread, because I didn’t see anyone slapping down Jacob Weisberg. Are you acquainted with that piece?

DB: Yes, and I actually don’t disagree with you.

HH: Well, did you write something about it?

DB: Did I write something about it? No, I didn’t happen to, no.

HH: You know, I think journalists have to stand up and point to bigotry in their midst. I mean, if that had been a piece that I won’t vote for a black, or I won’t vote for women, or I won’t vote for a Jew because they’re Jewish, I think the world would have come down on Jacob Weisberg. So he does a drive-by in print for a subsidiary of the Washington Post, and nobody says anything.

DB: I think that there have been several pieces written, and believe me, as I’m sure you could guess, I think that there are plenty of things to actually attack Mitt Romney about, but I think that there have been a number of pieces that have attacked him by attacking his religion. And not like I’m saying not asking questions about it, how does it inform him, but just attacking his religion, that I think deserve to be criticized and condemned. I agree with you completely.

HH: Now I think, I think what’s interesting, there’s a debate about Romney’s health plan between Cato and Heritage, have you followed that at all?

DB: Yup. I have, yup.

HH: That’s a very interesting debate that will matter a lot, and will matter in a Republican primary.

DB: It should. Now that’s interesting to say that, because that is something that I think would split a lot of Republicans, and I think the Cato Institute, for instance, has a very interesting paper out on it. What does he…where does he feel, do you find, how does he feel about splits in the Republican Party between, you know, more libertarian, more conservative, does he feel like he can speak to the different, hold those different parts together?

HH: Well, like many skilled people running for office, he’s not throwing anyone out of his tent. Rudy, you know, I’m going to talk to Rudy Giuliani in the morning, and that’ll be the third time we’ve talked to him. I hope to talk to these guys a lot. The only one who won’t come on the program is Senator McCain. We’ve invited Senator McCain on, I don’t know, fifty times, and he won’t come on. Senator McCain prefers Beltway media to conservative center-right media like this. But I think these debates are going to go on for a year, and one of the crucial things is, it’s very, very early. But it’s going to be a very, very different campaign. And the interesting thing is mainstream media has no credibility with the center-right electorate, and they’re not going to influence it. I keep saying the more that Romney gets attacked by the MSM’ers, the better off he is.

DB: I’ve heard that theory.

HH: I’ve got one more segment coming up, so I’ll give you one more question after the break, David, if you want it. I really appreciate your transparency here.

DB: I’ll take it, and I appreciate it.

– – – –

HH: I may have found the Bill Bradley of the East Coast. Bill Bradley, the L.A. Weekly political reporter, the best political reporter in California along with Weintraub up in Sacramento. Tell me, David, I’ll give you the last question, but I’ll get my last one in first.

DB: Yup.

HH: What do you make of Duval’s drapes?

DB: (laughing) Boy, has he mishandled a few things, huh?

HH: Yeah, rookie.

DB: Yeah, it’s rookie mistakes, you know? It’s rookie mistakes, and hopefully, he’ll put all that behind him. I can’t, I can’t explain that one away.

HH: How much did they cost? Twenty-four grand?

DB: I think the drapes themselves were ten grand.

HH: Ooh, that’s bad. All right, what’s your last one? What’s your exit question here?

DB: All right. Well let me ask you what would you like, or what do you hope that the impact or the influence of your book will be? Who do you think needs to read it? What would you like them to take away? Or who’s minds do you hope to change? Anything like that.

HH: Well, one, I want everyone who’s interested in politics to read it, because it’s about politics, about Romney. Number two, it’s an immunization against mainstream media bias with regards to Romney, and to a lesser extent, Giuliani, McCain, et cetera. I think that the MSM is out to destroy all the Republicans, that they’re out to cover Obama, protect him, that they’re going very gently on Senator Clinton, and that they will continue to do that. I think you saw that with Kerry, and…did you believe Kerry every went to Cambodia on Christmas Eve, David?

DB: I think that I tend to take the word of people with more medals than I have.

HH: Well, no, that’s not…this is an objective question. It’s not about his wounds. I never brought that up. He said he was in Cambodia on Christmas Eve, 1968. Did you believe that one?

DB: I will believe that until I’m convinced otherwise. But I won’t say that I know as much about the Christmas Eve…I mean, I read about the controversy at the time, but…

HH: Okay, how about the magic hat? Are you familiar with the magic hat?

DB: The magic hat? Was…

HH: That Kerry carries around in his briefcase, and he pulls out and showed to the Washington Post reporter, from the CIA guy who gave it to him?

DB: Yeah, I’ve heard about that. I’ve heard about the medals that he’s supposedly…

HH: I’m not bringing up the medals. Why…and he never released his Navy records. You tell me, why did he never get these questions? Why do they never go after the obvious broken legs, when they’re out there trying to break the legs of Republicans? So my book is really an immunization against that for ’08. And I don’t know, I’ll give you the last 45 seconds. Why don’t they lean on the Dems?

DB: I believe that they do. I think that this notion that there’s heavier leaning one way or the other, I don’t think that’s really true. I think the Boston Globe, as a matter of fact, was very…did a lot of investigative reporting and critical reporting of John Kerry and his history in the lead up to that campaign, and…

DB: The magic hat story, go back and read that Washington Post thing, and ask yourself if a Republican had said I’ve got my lucky hat here, I got it from a CIA guy I delivered into Cambodia, if that would have stood up. David, great to make your acquaintance. I look forward to talking to you again in the future. I hope we can have you back.

End of interview.


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