The Factor Rundown
Talking Points Memo & Top Story
Unresolved Problems Segment
A No Spin Interview with Colin Powell
Guests: General Colin Powell
"It is curious, to say the least, that General Colin Powell has become such an ardent supporter of President Obama. On paper it would seem that the General and the President are total opposites. Mr. Obama is the champion of the entitlement state; Colin Powell is a self-reliant guy who rose from poverty in the South Bronx. Until 2008 he was always a staunch Republican, but now that has changed. The General voted for Barack Obama and has been very critical of the Republican Party. He has also accused Republicans of 'looking down on minorities.' I wanted to understand why his politics have changed, so the General and I spoke."
Here are some excerpts from that interview:
O'Reilly: What do you object to that caused you to vote for the President twice?
Powell: First and foremost, I didn't think the economic plans put forward by the Republicans in 2008 and 2012 were suited for the times we were in. Secondly, in the last several years I have been troubled by the rightward shift of the Republican Party.
O'Reilly: African American unemployment has gone up, black income has gone down under President Obama. But you still supported the guy whose economic policies didn't work for African Americans or anybody else.
Powell: Why are you only seeing me as an African American?
O'Reilly: Because in some of your criticisms you said the Republicans' disengagement from minorities troubled you.
Powell: The economic situation in the country has improved, but not enough. We have seen a doubling of the stock market, the financial system has stabilized, and the economy has improved. I want to see it improve in a broader sense so those at the lower end of the economic scale, including African Americans and Latino Americans, can come up.
O'Reilly: You seem to be voting on 'hope' because we haven't seen much of an economic improvement and the big-spending policies of the Democrats and the President have driven the debt to close to $17 trillion.
The conversation turned to voting laws.
Powell: One of the most terrible things that happened in the last election season was that we had a number of states that claimed there was voting fraud. There really wasn't any fraud, but we were making it very difficult for those people to vote.
O'Reilly: You object to showing an identification card when you vote?
Powell: No, of course not.
O'Reilly: That's all the Republican Party wants is a voter ID.
Powell: I object to putting in place additional levels of voter ID that disenfranchise our fellow citizens. I want to see a Republican Party that wants everybody to vote and says we're going to give you a reason to vote for us.
Returning for a second segment, General Powell recalled his anger when Romney adviser John Sununu referred to President Obama as "lazy."
Powell: He said President Obama was lazy a couple of times. It so shocked the person who was interviewing him that they asked him if he really wanted to use that word. John said other things that were troubling. He said the President wasn't a 'real American.' What is that supposed to mean?
O'Reilly: I'm not defending Sununu's choice of words, but I'm saying he's not a racist. Why even bring it up?
Powell: I would never call John a racist, but he used some very poorly chosen words. You have to understand the impact this has on minorities throughout our country. If you want to bring them to the Republican Party, you have to avoid this kind of language.
O'Reilly: You were born in the South Bronx and made it on your own. The entitlement culture now extends to 50% of Americans home and you're supporting the Democratic Party. It seems their values are different than yours.
Powell: Yes, I was raised in the South Bronx, but it was Social Security that kept my parents in respectable comfort after they had retired. But I think there are a lot of things we can do with entitlement reform, there are lots of areas in our government where we can take a hard look at ways to cut the budget.
O'Reilly: This is a rude question, but I have to ask it. People in Washington say you're angry with the Republicans because they made you look bad in the weapons of mass destruction deal during the Iraq war. I don't believe that, but this is going around.
Powell: That's a bunch of nonsense! I presented the information that we all had from the intelligence community, and when I went to the United Nations it was with the assurance of the CIA that the information I had was correct.
O'Reilly: General, I salute you, I think you're a patriot.
Reaction to the Colin Powell Interview
Guests: Monica Crowley and Alan Colmes
Monica Crowley and Alan Colmes entered the No Spin Zone to evaluate the interview with General Powell. "The Republican party needs a bigger tent," Colmes said, "and he's an example of why it's necessary. He talked about working for Nixon and Reagan, and I don't know that those people could get nominated in today's Republican Party." But Crowley suggested that Powell sounded more like a Democrat. "He really wasn't making Republican arguments about how the party can improve its position with minorities, he was making Democratic arguments. He could be using his voice to work within the Republican Party about outreach to minorities, but instead he's attacking from the outside."
Unemployment discrimination banned by NYC Council Bill
Guests: John Stossel
The New York City Council has passed a law allowing unemployed people to sue any company that doesn't hire them. Fox Business anchor John Stossel was not amused. "Unemployed people can also sue a company if the company refuses to give them an interview," he griped. "This is a full employment program for lawyers, and if you like extortion you should have more laws like this. We're stuck with one more dumb law that will hurt people." The Factor pithily described the law as "totally insane." On another topic, Stossel endorsed a Vermont proposal to legalize assisted suicide. "I really fear someday being in terrible pain," he said, "and being unable to end that pain. I would like to have the option, I should own my own body."
President Obama unveils his immigration plan
Guests: Charles Krauthammer
A day after eight Senators put forth an immigration reform proposal, President Obama weighed in with his own. FNC's Charles Krauthammer opined that both plans are lacking in border security. "It is true," he said, "that the border is supposed to be secure before people can get green cards and citizenship. But what most people have not noticed is that the Senate bill is essentially instant legalization. The day it's signed everybody gets 'probationary' status, which means everyone comes out of the shadows and registers with the government. It is utterly inconceivable that will be rolled back because a commission says the border isn't being sufficiently enforced. I've been for amnesty for years, but you have to close the border first!"
Federal ICE agents sue Obama Administration over immigration policy
Guests: Kimberly Guilfoyle and Lis Wiehl
A group of immigration agents are suing the administration, claiming they are unable to perform their jobs. Legal analysts Lis Wiehl and Kimberly Guilfoyle elaborated. "The agents are saying they've been put in a 'catch 22,'" Wiehl stated, "and that they have to either follow the new policies or follow the law. The President said that if you came here before you were 16 and you've been in school or you're a veteran, you can't be deported." Guilfoyle added that the policy is tying the hands of immigration officials. "They're saying the presidential directive usurps the Constitution and that they're being asked to violate federal law. This goes to the issue of presidential authority." Both attorneys predicted the case will reach the Supreme Court.
Viewers sound off
Tom Sullivan, Lake George, NY: "My guess is that Steve Kroft did not ask the president and Hillary Clinton tough questions because congressional Republicans could not nail the Libya thing down. If we never know the truth, we have only ourselves to blame."
Nancy Anderson, Sonoma, CA: "Many of us do care what happened in Libya but the national media will not cover the story. It is appalling."
Ray Varela, Phoenix, AZ: "It is obvious that the people who run '60 Minutes' ordered Mr. Kroft not to ask hard questions."
Bradley Howe, Rochester, MN: "Bill, Brit Hume stated that presidents must be treated with respect and courtesy. Why? The presidents work for us and we should be treated with respect and courtesy."
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