GLENN BECK PROGRAM
GLENN: Anderson Cooper who is your congenial host for the Republican debates tonight.
COOPER: How are you doing?
GLENN: Good, Anderson, how are you?
COOPER: You are not going to watch?
GLENN: Me, I'm going to be watching, sure.
GLENN: Yes, I'm going to watch. I've been watching the highlights quite honestly. I can't take it anymore. You know?
COOPER: I know. You are still upset over Marie Osmond being rejected from Dancing With the Stars.
GLENN: Don't even start with me. You want to talk about a conspiracy, there it is. How did she lose that? Here's the problem.
I watch these debates and they all have, like, 30 seconds and so I get the same, "Okay, yeah, yeah, I got it, I got it."
COOPER: Well, tonight they get 90 seconds. So there you go.
GLENN: Why? We dropped some people?
COOPER: Well, no, not yet.
GLENN: We did drop Brownback.
COOPER: That is true. And Alan Keyes is not going to be here tonight.
GLENN: Have you ever thought of saying, like for instance, I heard one with Ron Paul where he said, well, I think we should abolish the FBI. Bing, times up. You know what, we might want to spend a little more time on that one.
COOPER: Yeah, perhaps. But, you know, you've got to move these things along.
GLENN: You are the guy who picked all of the questions tonight, right? From the --
COOPER: Well, me and a couple of other mucky mucks but, yeah. We've got like 5,000 questions. The Democrats have 3,000. Got 5,000 this time. So we had a lot to choose from.
GLENN: Well, what does that mean?
COOPER: That just means we had a lot to choose from. We had a lot of good questions.
GLENN: Why do you think that there were 5,000 this time and only 3,000 last time?
COOPER: Because I think people saw the process. I think the first time it was kind of an unknown but I think once people saw how it worked, saw that people actually are -- you know, some of the questions get asked and I think people decided they wanted to have the opportunity to do it.
GLENN: How do you know, when you're picking the questions, did you ever see a good question and you're like, yeah, but I think that guy is -- you know, I think that guy is an operative or this is --
COOPER: Oh, absolutely. I mean, a lot of the questions clearly are, you know, from groups with an agenda which is -- you know, which is fine. I mean, they have the right to ask questions, too. But, you know, you do want to try to have it be people who are asking questions really from the heart and that are questions of real concern to them.
So you try to sort of whittle out the mass organized question, you know, campaigns.
GLENN: How do you do that? First of all I think you got 5,000 for the Republicans because I think you've got a lot of people who are these mass groups and conservatives, you know, they're just, they're working all the time. They are not making videos. You know what I'm saying? We're busy getting rich.
COOPER: But actually I think most of our questions come from Republicans. I mean, it's not -- this is not a bunch of Democrats like lobbying, you know, as the Republicans. I think if the debate became that, it would eventually kind of be unfair. What we want is a serious debate for, you know, a Republican audience with legitimate questions.
GLENN: Yeah. You know what it is? It is, the secret, I think, is honest questions.
GLENN: As long as somebody is really, truly seeking an answer and doesn't care what the truth necessarily is, it doesn't have to be their truth. They just want the truth, then no question is out of line.
COOPER: I totally agree. And I mean, that's what we're looking for.
You are looking for honesty and just people who are living -- you know, the topics are of real concern to their lives, not some theoretical concern, you know, that they've just read about or trying to ask the most intelligent question. It doesn't matter. What matters is something that's genuine.
GLENN: Let me ask you this before I go into the candidates themselves. You know that evil hate monger Tim Russert that is just always so unfair, do claims like that -- because I think Tim Russert is one of the fairest guys out there. He pisses me off and makes me cheer in the same line of questioning, which shows me that he's asking the tough questions for both sides. When you hear somebody take somebody on like Russert, who is clearly one of the fairest interviewers out there, does it ever give you pause and say, how do I rephrase this, or how do I ask this question? Do you play that game or do you just go for it?
COOPER: No, I think if you start down that road, you're never going to be stopped and influenced by criticism and you are always going to get criticized. I mean, to me these debates are not about me and they are not about the moderator. They are about, you know, the candidates. In this particular thing they are about the people asking the questions and so, you know, I think when the story becomes, well, the moderator did this and this and this, I think that's -- you know, politicians are going to use that all the time if they are not happy with the way they did in the debate. They will attack the moderator or whatever. You know, I think that's just part of the territory.
GLENN: Do you think Huckabee, the surge is -- does he have a chance of being the nominee? You are probably not going to be able to answer these questions, are you?
COOPER: You know what, I don't know. I don't believe anybody knows anything about politics. Like everybody claims to be an expert. I find always gets it wrong anyway. So I don't think anyone really knows. Anything is possible. But I do think it's going to be hard beyond Iowa for him. I mean, my understanding is his support in New Hampshire is not, you know, is not as strong as it is in Iowa. It's a different kind of voter there, more dependence to vote in New Hampshire. So, you know, what the experts have told me that, you know, he will have a harder time, even if he does it truly well in Iowa carrying through, they're not sure to follow on.
GLENN: I have to tell you, I like Huckabee. I think he is an honest guy. I only spent an hour with him and he speaks from the heart. He doesn't seem to be processed. With that being said, you know, a lot of people that are supporting him are also people who say, you know, dead wrong on illegal immigration. I mean, he is, in many ways he goes down the John McCain. Are you going to ask him at all about illegal immigration?
COOPER: Illegal immigration will certainly be a big topic tonight and we have a bunch of questions on it. We got a lot of questions from the interviewers on it. So, yeah, that's definitely going to be a major topic tonight probably right off the bat but I'm not sure how we'll start yet. But it's definitely going to be a major topic. But you are right about Huckabee being on the campaign trail. It's interesting. All the people from the different campaigns I talk to, when I just talk to them off the record about what candidates are they really impressed by on the campaign trail, every one of them names Huckabee just saying he comes off very genuine.
GLENN: He is.
COOPER: And he's just a very good campaigner.
GLENN: You've got to hear that on the other side. I bet that's what people say about Barack Obama? No?
COOPER: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I mean, I don't know that -- most people say he doesn't necessarily translate as well on the campaign trail. I mean, he does well in front of a crowd, not necessarily in debates people say, but there is that same genuineness and intelligent, you know, sort of clear intelligence that people talk about when they talk about Barack Obama.
GLENN: Anderson, so many people will say, oh, the Republicans are not happy with their choices and there are so few choices out there. I have to tell you, if you look at both sides, you have Hillary and Bill Clinton. I mean, you know, they can separate themselves as much as they want and then come together as much as they want, you know, as politically expedient but, you know, if that's what you're looking for, boy, you have a dynamic duo there. John Edwards is, I mean, John Edwards. If you ever need somebody to channel dead children, he's the guy to get. But then you have Barack Obama who is absolutely unbelievable. I don't agree with his policies, but he's a good candidate. On the other side Rudy Giuliani, same kind of thing. Mitt Romney, same thing. Huckabee, same thing. You are looking for border solutions, you've got Duncan Hunter or Tancredo. You've got people with actual solutions this time. I don't recall a time that we've had this many choices.
COOPER: I totally agree. I mean, on both sides of the aisle you have smart, smart people from all different spectrums and also, you know, I make fun of the debates as much as anybody and certainly as much as you do but you also this time around cannot say that you don't know where the candidates stand or you haven't had the opportunity to hear where the candidates stand. We've had, I don't know, I think this is like --
COOPER: I think this is actually the 945th debate we had but there's certainly -- you know, we've had example opportunity to hear from these candidates.
GLENN: Yeah, I think I still could disagree with you. I still don't know where Hillary Clinton stands on things. I still --
COOPER: Well, that's a whole other issue, which -- you know.
GLENN: I mean, Bill Clinton, the guy who, along with Al Gore, the Nobel Peace Prize winner, they're the administration that said regime change, we've got to, you know, take care of Saddam Hussein, yada, yada, yada. For it, then against it. I mean, he came out yesterday in a speech and said, "I was never for that Iraq thing." How do these people do it with a straight face? Do you ever get to the point where you are talking to these politicians and you go to yourself, "Good God, I can't believe he's expecting me to believe this"?
COOPER: Yeah, I try not to talk to them as much as possible but, yes.
You know, I think after a while, though, they believe it. Like they start to believe what they say, which is an interesting skill. I mean, I think after a certain point they just decide, you know what, what I say is actually what happened and --
GLENN: That's an interesting skill. That's called delusions (laughing.).
Do me a favor, will you?
GLENN: Ask -- I've heard, you know, I read in the paper yesterday that Rudy Giuliani and Huckabee are kind of teaming up. Have you heard that? Did you read this? I feel like Jay Leno here.
COOPER: Against Romney?
GLENN: No, that they are teaming up, that they are already putting the alliance together of President/Vice President, that they are intentionally not targeting each other and they are singing each other's praises.
GLENN: That's interesting. There are those saying Huckabee's running for Vice President, that, you know, he doesn't feel he can really win.
Again that's sort of, you know, just political so-called pundits talking. But that's -- you know, it's very possible, I suppose. I mean, there's another line at thought which is that there's a danger in attacking Huckabee directly, that you're going to just piss off -- excuse me, you're going to upset --
GLENN: It's not CNN. You can say it here.
COOPER: Oh, can I?
COOPER: You're going to upset his core constituents who are a group you don't want to upset and they are not going to necessarily come over to the side of a Rudy Giuliani; they're just going to leave.
They are just going to leave the table altogether. And so, you know, as Huckabee is rising, you don't see people coming after him in the same way that you might other candidates.
GLENN: Yeah, I'll bet you that Huckabee is going to be the Vice President, I mean at least the vice presidential candidate no matter who's picked at the top. I mean, if it's Romney or Giuliani, I bet you they both try to court him just because of -- I mean, it makes such political sense. And he's a genuine guy that you generally feel comfortable that, you know, there's nobody, you know, stealing the silverware or shooting people in the middle of the night. You know what I'm saying? One of those things is not happening. Yeah, yeah.
So Anderson, it's always a delight. May I ask you a -- ask you a question on the last time I appeared on your show. Now, you've got to be careful. Do you want me to ask you the question or not?
COOPER: Yeah, sure.
GLENN: All right. Oh, by the way, I had another idea.
GLENN: I think Dr. Sanjay Gupta should show up tonight with an actual elephant. I'm just -- it could be a good promo for the whole, you know, Planet in Peril thing. I'm just saying.
COOPER: You're right.
GLENN: Here's what I'd like to know. The last --
COOPER: I think Barack Obama used the term Planet in Peril speech.
GLENN: Is he going to pay royalties? You should copyright there.
COOPER: I think so. As soon as he heard that, I heard kaching. So --
GLENN: That's great. I was on your program last week.
GLENN: And you were very, very gracious and you actually read my book, which shocked me.
GLENN: And you said -- and it was a very, I thought genuine moment where you said, people paint you as such an extremist and divider.
And he said, I don't -- or you said, I don't understand that because it seems common sense to me. How much heat did you get from any liberal friends that might live next door or -- because they love to hate me.
COOPER: Do they? I didn't hear anything. No one said anything to me. In fact, people who I know saw the interview liked it. So, you know, I don't know. I mean, truly a lot of people, I guess, attack you but I'm not sure who they are because I don't hang out with them.
GLENN: You don't hang out with anybody except stewardesses. You're on a plane all the time. All right. Great to talk to you, Anderson.
Tonight it's on at what time?
COOPER: Starts at 8:00.
GLENN: Of course that's when I'm going to be there, 8:00.
COOPER: I know you will.
GLENN: 8:00. Thanks, Anderson.