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The O'Reilly Factor
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
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Activist judges: Accountable?
Guests: Fox News chief judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano & attorney Jeffrey Nathan

"Recent court rulings allowing the release of more Abu Ghraib pictures, live sex acts in Oregon, and a ban on 'under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance point out that liberal judges are hell bent on changing America to fit their secular progressive points of view. The right is outraged over these decisions, as they should be. But hold it! What about Harriet Miers? The Supreme Court nominee is being brutally attacked by conservatives who want assurances that she'll vote the conservative party line. Isn't that judicial activism? If you don't want left-wing activism, you can't demand right-wing zealotry. And then there are the criminal courts - almost every day we report another terrible crime against children, and often the judges give sexual predators light sentences. On Tuesday night's Factor, attorney Ed Ryan accused me of undermining the judicial system and intimidating judges. He feels that a judge's so-called discretion is beyond reproach, but I strongly disagree. Talking Points is fed up - it's long past time for the press and the people to hold judges accountable for what they do. We have to take the country back."

Fox News Video: FoxNews.com

For more on judicial accountability, The Factor was joined by defense attorney Jeffrey Nathan, who also denounced what he considers excessive criticism of judges. "When you start putting up judges' photographs on the air and criticizing what they're doing, you're undermining the nation's confidence in the integrity of our judiciary. Judges work extremely hard to evaluate a case and mete out as sentence that's just. To pick on them the way you're doing is to make a target out of them." However, Fox News analyst Andrew Napolitano claimed shining a spotlight on judges is a needed tonic. "You are exposing excess on the left and the right in the judicial system. The judiciary is the least understood branch of government, and exposure is a good thing. If you are intimidating judges, they don't belong on the bench." The Factor argued that someone has to watch judges, many of whom have lifetime appointments. "I am speaking on behalf of the parents and aunts and uncles and grandparents who have had children abused, and have watched the judicial system not punish the people enough. I speak for them."

More on NOLA police beating
Guest: Frank DeSalvo, Police Association attorney

New Orleans police officers were caught on tape punching 64-year old Robert Davis, who they claim was intoxicated. Davis gave his account of events on Tuesday's Factor, but police attorney Frank DeSalvo told a far different version. "Mr. Davis was intoxicated, either on alcohol or on drugs. He was so drunk or so infirmed that he actually stumbled into a police horse. For his own safety the police officers pulled him aside to talk to him. He pushed them away. They had an obligation to take this man who couldn't even walk down the street and deal with him." The Factor reminded DeSalvo that Robert Davis has proclaimed his sobriety. "Mr. Davis said he hasn't had a drink in 25 years and hadn't taken drugs. It hinges on that. If the man wasn't impaired, then your guys are in big trouble because of the videotape. I'm troubled because he's 64-years old and you had three cops beating him."

Minn. Vikings in trouble over party
Guest: Dan Cole, KFAN Radio

As many as twenty Minnesota Viking football players have been accused of taking part in a wild sex party during a chartered cruise on Lake Minnetonka. Sports talk show host Dan Cole explained the allegations. "People say imagine some of the most decadent behavior you can, then multiply it tenfold. There are rumors that there was prostitution involved, and that hush money may have been offered to some of the employees on the boat to keep quiet. There was definitely sexual behavior taking place on the boat, and employees feared for their safety." The Factor acknowledged that not all the facts are known, but surmised what may have happened. "It looks like they organized this cruise for a week when they weren't scheduled to play. They hired strippers, then got into prostitution. This is another black eye for the Vikings, and can't be going down well in the community."

Bush administration vs. CIA
Guest: Adm. Stansfield Turner, fmr. CIA director

There is continuing tension between the White House and the CIA, much of it centering on the war in Iraq. Former CIA director Stansfield Turner said there is plenty of blame to go around. "I don't think the CIA did a good job in predicting there would be weapons of mass destruction, but I also think the administration pushed them to make as good a case as they could that weapons were there." Turner suggested that bureaucratic infighting is putting Americans at risk. "I don't think we're as safe as we need to be. We've got to give the new director of national intelligence more authority. He doesn't have the clout he should have." The Factor urged both sides to cooperate against a common enemy. "This can't be good for the nation - we the people are dependent on both the Bush administration and the CIA to protect us."

Parental notification of abortions
Guests: Steve Smith, Campaign for Teen Safety & Karen Hanratty, California Republican Party

If approved by California voters, Proposition 73 will require that parents be informed before their juvenile daughter undergoes an abortion. Karen Hanratty of the California GOP applauded the initiative. "A mother has the right to know if her daughter is undergoing a very serious and intrusive medical procedure. And I can not believe the lengths to which people will go to stand between a mother and her daughter." Prop 73 opponent Steve Smith explained his opposition. "We're talking about the safety of our teenage daughters. If, for any reason, they can't go to their parents, they need access to qualified doctors and qualified nurses. I would expect my daughter to come and talk to me, but there are many households where that may not happen." The Factor maintained that parents have a right to know. "For the state to say to my child that you can't have a tattoo, you can't go to a tanning parlor, but you can have an abortion and your mom and dad don't have to know - that is a tremendous violation of my rights as a parent."

Python problems in the wild
Guest: Biologist Joe Wazylewski

Python snakes are slithering throughout the Everglades area of Florida, where one recently ate a pet cat. Biologist Joe Wazylewski elaborated on the profusion of snakes and other reptiles in the Sunshine State. "It's a worldwide problem, but it's accentuated here in Florida because of the climate. I don't know if it's going to hurt the tourist industry, but we have to get a handle on it. There are methods to trap these animals." The Factor laid out one possible cause of the problem. "You have an exotic pet industry, and people can actually buy pythons and anacondas legally. Then when they get sick of them they dump them in the Everglades."

Factor Words of the Day
Viewers sound off
Many of you wrote about the segment with Massachusetts lawyer Ed Ryan, who defended Judge Margo Botsford's sentencing of a multiple child rapist to 8 to 11 years. Some excerpts:

Joe Cavanaugh, West Harwich, MA: "Bill, I am an attorney in this state and I am embarrassed by Mr. Ryan's defense of Judge Botsford. You brilliantly dismantled him."

Charles Cummiskey, Anchorage, AK: "O'Reilly, Ed Ryan got to you. It was good to see him offer some sense."

Chris Summey, The Azores: "Bill, you were too soft on Ryan."

Brett Browman, Los Angeles, CA: "Bill, you personally attacked Judge Botsford by calling her a national disgrace. This is typical of you."

Barb Saeger, Shelton, WA: "Bill, you did not attack the judge! You held her accountable."

Patti Columbo, Chester, NH: "Bill, after seeing that debate, we are buying some Jessica's Law decals and sending them to Ryan and Judge Botsford."

Books Mentioned


Burn Before Reading: Presidents, CIA Directors, and Secret Intelligence
by Stansfield Turner

Read more...
 
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