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The O'Reilly Factor
Thursday, September 27, 2012
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The presidential election and the likability factor
Guests: Jeanne Zaino and Wendy Schiller

"There are two kinds of voters in America, those who know what the issues are and those who don't. For the uninformed casual voter, emotion usually drives the decision and part of that equation is likability. There is no question that both President Obama and Governor Romney know they must come across as 'nice guys,' which is why they go on entertainment programs. Some candidates believe they should not be dealing with trivia when the economy is awful and there's turmoil in the Middle East, but they do what they think they have to do. Talking Points understands that Americans want their leaders to be accessible, and that's why the President's campaign has spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to demonize Governor Romney as a callous rich guy. No one knows how many American voters are basically uninformed folks who vote on whims, but it's safe to say the group is substantial, especially in a time when social media is diverting attention from important issues. If you look at newspaper circulation and TV news ratings, you might come to the conclusion that about half the country is simply uninformed. Certainly the folks are not paying as much attention to serious things as they did when there were only three networks and no Internet. Remember those days?"

The Factor pursued the likability issue with political science professors Wendy Schiller and Jeanne Zaino. "Likability can make the deciding difference," Schiller stated, "and people like Obama right now more than Romney because they are more familiar with his story. He looks like a loyal family guy, a good father and husband, and he hasn't given people any reason not to stick with those images of him. Mitt Romney is also a likable guy, but he has to tie that to how his policies will help the average American." Zaino contended that Romney's handlers should focus less on his likability, more on the issues. "The Romney campaign has not given the voters a chance to look at the basic issues he needs to talk about, so the more they focus on likability, the better for Obama. What people really want to see is a focus on the economy."
Latest polling in the presidential race
Guests: Laura Ingraham

Radio talk show star Laura Ingraham weighed in on the recent controversy surrounding polls and their tendency to over-sample Democrats. "There's some validity to the criticism of the polls," she said, "but if the Romney campaign's internal numbers were markedly different, you would really hear a Romney-Ryan pushback in those battleground states. I think they believe they're running behind and that's why you're seeing some tweaks to the Romney campaign. They are making some changes in tone and in strategy." Ingraham lamented that many Americans seem to be totally uninformed. "Deep understanding of issues today is kind of out the window. We ingest news in 30-second bites and people make very quick reads on things, and for some people personality trumps results."
Body Language zeroes in on the presidential campaign
Guests: Tonya Reiman

Body linguist Tonya Reiman analyzed both President Obama and Governor Romney as they spoke with '60 Minutes.' "What I noticed about President Obama," Reiman said, "is that you saw more gestures than you normally see with him. And he made more eye contact, which tells me he was prepared. He also answered the final question with his fists closed, which is an aggressive thing. Mitt Romney seemed stiff like he always does, but he was a little more jovial face-wise and there were some contemptuous smirks at the end. I felt he was satisfied by how he came across."
NYC public schools giving morning after pill to students without parental consent
Guests: Gretchen Carlson and Jeanine Pirro

More than 50 public schools in New York City can give the "morning after" birth control pill to students as young as fourteen, even without their parents' consent. The Factor asked Culture Warriors Jeanine Pirro and Gretchen Carlson to opine. "Do I like this as a parent," Pirro asked, "and do I like parents not being notified? No! But what I like less is that the United States has the highest incidence of teen pregnancy in the industrialized world. I like it less when teenagers give babies that they drop into toilets or throw into dumpsters and are not prepared to raise." But Carlson denounced the state officials who enacted this plan and the parents who are simply not involved. "Parents should have the ability to make all decisions, especially this one, with their children. Tomorrow I'm going to send a note to school for my kid to go home with another parent for a play date, but if I had my kid in New York City, my child could get an abortion and I wouldn't know." The Factor argued that New York is enabling some criminals to avoid prosecution: "The state is saying, 'We don't care about statutory rape.' If an underage girl is pregnant, that's obviously a crime, but the states won't tell the parents! The State of New York is abdicating its responsibility to protect children from statutory rape."
Presidential Debate Preview
Guests: Megyn Kelly

The Factor asked Fox News anchor and attorney Megyn Kelly to preview next week's presidential debate. "We have a shot at getting something meaningful in these debates," Kelly reported, "because of the format they've chosen. There will be a discussion following the initial answer and maybe the moderators will get a little aggressive." Based on previous performances, Kelly characterized Governor Romney as a fairly accomplished debater. "I would say Mitt Romney is moderate to strong, I think he was one of the best during the primaries and was very solid throughout. You have to have a memorable moment and you have to avoid a misstep." The Factor concluded with some unsolicited advice for the President: "If I were President Obama, I would try to say Mitt Romney is an out of touch rich guy who never really accomplished anything but throwing people out of work, hoping that Romney might overreact."
News Quiz: Bad Presidential Decisions Edition
Guests: Martha MacCallum and Uma Pemmaraju

Uma Pemmaraju, perhaps doing to Steve Doocy what Lou Gehrig did to Wally Pipp, returned for another duel with Martha MacCallum. Among the questions: "President Kennedy executed the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion, but which other President initiated the operation?" ... "Bill Clinton was the second President to be impeached; who was the first?" In the end, it was actually MacCallum who resembled Lou Gehrig - she was a perfect 5-for-5 and romped to an easy victory.
Factor Words of the Day
Viewers sound off
Judy Levy, Ontario, Canada: "Bill, up here all voters must show I.D. before they cast their ballot."

Stanley Jackson, Lawton, OK: "O'Reilly, thanks for the thorough analysis of what is behind the polling. The flaws are now obvious."

James Mollo, Atascadaro, CA: "I don't earn very much and like Miller am sick and tired of paying benefits for those who will not work."
A newspaper to avoid
A new poll shows that 60% of Americans don't trust the mainstream media, and here's another reason. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorialized, "If you're a Democrat, try tuning into Fox News for a while. Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, Greta Van Susteren. It doesn't matter." In response, The Factor offered this tip: "These Post-Dispatch people are dumb and corrupt, a deadly combination. Circulation is down 35% since 2003 and their parent company has filed bankruptcy. Don't read the St. Louis Post-Dispatch!"
Books Mentioned


Don't Know Much About American Presidents
by Kenneth C. Davis

Read more...
 
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