GLENN: Putting the radio back into Radio City, from Midtown Manhattan, this is the third most listened to show in all of America. Hello, you sick twisted freak. There's a couple of things that are going on that I find very important and good, really, some really good news for you. I want to start here. This is from the Associated Press. Listen to this story. Court: Mumia deserves new hearing. A federal appeals court on Thursday said former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal cannot be executed for murdering a Philadelphia police officer without a new penalty hearing. The third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld his conviction but wanted to give him a new sentencing hearing because of flawed jury instructions. If prosecutors don't want to give him a new death penalty hearing, he will be automatically sentenced to life in prison. Prosecutors are weighing their options, et cetera, et cetera.
This is the Black Panther that shot a cop in Philadelphia cold blood, just boom, dead. All of Hollywood is supporting him, the usual suspects, of course, running to the side of a Black Panther. This is significant for a couple of reasons, but I was interested in the way at least the AP spun it, "Deserves a new hearing." If you're not really into this case, if you are not really following it, you would think, oh, wow, maybe he didn't really do it. That's not what they said, but that's the headline from the Associated Press.
Let's go to Michael Smerconish who has been on this story for years and years and years. Michael, how are you, sir?
SMERCONISH: Glenn, remember now Tim Robbins, Susan Sarandon, Spike Lee, Whoopi Goldberg, Amnesty International, Danny Glover, Rage Against the Machine, the City of San Francisco, they have all rallied to the side of a cop killer.
GLENN: Hang on. Do me a favor. Do me a favor. Go through that list again and let me just, let me just check the boxes as we go. Go one at a time. Go ahead.
SMERCONISH: Tim Robbins.
SMERCONISH: Susan Sarandon.
SMERCONISH: Spike Lee.
SMERCONISH: Whoopi Goldberg.
GLENN: Well, I don't know if she's a Marxist. What do you think, Stu?
STU: On The View she seems to say the right thing sometimes.
GLENN: You can't predict her. Okay, so take her off that list, go ahead.
SMERCONISH: Danny Glover.
GLENN: Danny Glover, yeah, Marxist.
SMERCONISH: Paul Newman.
GLENN: Don't know.
SMERCONISH: Mike Farrell.
SMERCONISH: The rock band Rage Against the Machine.
SMERCONISH: How about this, the City of San Francisco.
SMERCONISH: The City of Paris, France has named him an honorary citizen.
SMERCONISH: There's literally a street in the suburbs of Paris that has been renamed Abu-Jamal Street or Way or Court, or who knows.
GLENN: Unbelievable. So they played all of their cards, you know, they played all of these theories out, Michael?
GLENN: So they had their day in court again?
SMERCONISH: Well, and you've really cut to the chase which is that the headlines across the country, I mean, I'm reading South African headlines that talk about human rights activist Abu-Jamal shall remain in prison. That's how nuts this is. But the real story as you pointed out is for 26 years he's had every appellate process known to man available to him yesterday and the federal court of appeals meaning one step away from the Supreme Court has upheld his conviction. So I feel comfortable in saying there's no way the Supreme Court is going to overturn a trial court finding and that of the lower federal courts. At a minimum the man stays in prison. Then they got into a semantic battle about whether the jury understood the meaning of the word "Mitigating" and whether mitigating circumstances had to be ruled upon unanimously. I mean, your head would spin if I told you this. An on that technicality they said either he now gets life in prison or the DA's office in Philadelphia has to retry for sentencing only, 26 years after the murder in 1981. So my hunch, he dies in prison and not a moment too soon.
GLENN: And they are not going to -- you don't think they are going to reexamine the penalty phase?
SMERCONISH: Glenn, you know, here's the reality. The reality is that Pennsylvania has a death penalty and so do many other states but in name only. Do you know that since the death penalty came back in Pennsylvania in the Seventies, we've put down three individuals and each one of them asked for it. So we have the death penalty, the politicians all thump their chests when they run for reelection, they say "I'm for the death penalty" and then nobody ever sees to it that it's really implemented. If it were ever a case for a death penalty, it would be when a 25-year-old police officer makes a routine car stop and pays with his life.
GLENN: You know, Michael, I read your article, we talked about it earlier this morning, about Barack Obama. And you say, you know, it doesn't -- you know, his reverend, his church is meaningless, you shouldn't pay attention to this, et cetera, et cetera. I think you're dead wrong on this and not because of the racism that is happening in his church. I mean, Michael, if it was reversed and you had cut a check for $27,500 and you had gone to a church for 20 years and the guy who was the head of your church was saying these things except in reverse and he was saying the problem with America is the poor black man and black America got a wake-up call on 9/11, do you think you'd even have a job today? Not running for President. Do you think you'd have a job today?
SMERCONISH: No. And I wouldn't defend anything that Jeremiah Wright said in those clips that, you know, you've run on television and on the radio.
SMERCONISH: The separate issue to me is whether you hold Barack Obama accountable for those words and I'm trying to give him the benefit of the doubt having listened intently to the speech that he delivered.
GLENN: But have you looked into the Black Liberation Theology?
SMERCONISH: Through you. I mean, your website and your television and radio program. And were it not for what you brought to light, I would be less informed on that issue.
GLENN: Okay. So when you see it, you realize that it is a perversion of the gospel which, you know, fine. You want to think Jesus was a giant floating frog, fine. Whatever, it's a free country. However, it's a perversion of the gospel and turns love into hate. It pits people against each other. And beyond that it is Marxist in its nature. It is absolutely redistributing wealth. It is moving wealth from this -- these people to these people. It is nothing if it's not Marxist in its nature. And don't you hear that kind of a mentality coming out of the mouth of Barack Obama?
SMERCONISH: Well, are you tying this to the Faulkner case?
GLENN: Well, I'm tying it only because the Panthers are Marxist. That's a Marxist movement. The Panthers are -- I asked one of the Black Panthers, what is the difference between Black Panthers philosophy and Black Liberation Theology, and the quote was "Not really much." And that's from a Black Panther. So he was sitting in that church hearing that kind of theology. Now, I'm not saying that he hates Whitie or anything like that. What I am saying is I do hear signs of hating America from his wife, I do hear signs of, you know, this perverted view of America and what we are and, you know, oh, jeez, everybody's keeping me down while I'm going to Stanford and Harvard. But what I hear from him is a perverted view of capitalism and freedom and what it means. And I think that comes from this kind of philosophy.
SMERCONISH: You know, I went to the speech. It was delivered in Philadelphia and I went in there, you know, thinking like Howard Baker, what did he hear and when did he hear it. And I think to a limited extent, maybe not to your satisfaction, he addressed that. He said he had been there for controversial statements although not those that had made the YouTube moments. I know that today he's going to go on The View and say that if he heard that sort of thing, he himself would probably have left the church. What I heard from Barack Obama, Glenn, that I have to tell you and you'll probably disagree with me but that I liked is that he had an answer as to how Reverend Wright was actually Reverend Wrong. In other words, that Wright's perception of American society was that it was static and there had been no positive change and that he, Obama, was the living embodiment of the American dream. I'm paraphrasing but --
GLENN: There's no credibility on that one. There's no credibility on that one, Michael, and here's where it falls apart. He said that, you know, he didn't have a problem going onto Don Imus but once he heard that one phrase from Don, he didn't want to empower or enable by being on his program. Well, being in that church enabled the reverend to continue this philosophy. Being in that church and writing a check for $27,500 is the definition of an enabler.
SMERCONISH: When I had him on my radio program earlier this week, what I wanted to know from him, Senator Obama, was whether behind closed doors he ever told Reverend Wright that he had these fundamental disagreements with him.
GLENN: I heard your interview.
SMERCONISH: And I don't know that, you know, he answered that to mine and certainly not to your satisfaction but it was -- look, I'm just, I'm not going to vote on this issue. I've made my mind up that relative to Reverend Wright, I'm not going to hold Barack Obama accountable for the words of another. I'll hold him accountable for his words.
GLENN: And that's how I got to Barack Obama from Mumia. You know, you can't say that -- you can't say that Barack Obama, you know, subscribes to the Black Panther philosophy, but you know what? I don't think that Tim Robbins is going to go out and shoot a cop and kill a cop, but he's siding with Mumia. When you have -- I don't think Barack Obama is going to round up all the white people and say, you know, Whitie's the problem here. I don't think he's going to do that. Now, Reverend Wright I don't know, but Barack Obama's not going to. But it has influenced his thinking. He is hanging with those kinds of people. It must play a factor when you look at Barack Obama. And that's the thing that I find frightening is that people are dismissing 20 years of sitting in a church, being indoctrinated with hate and Marxist philosophy. And then when you look at his economic policy, there it is. There's the Marxist philosophy. And yet everyone will dismiss it.
Michael, I thank you very much for following the Abu-Jamal case.
SMERCONISH: Hey, Glenn, I don't mind mentioning the book. You can't play that cash register sound because not a dime goes to me for the book that I wrote.
GLENN: I know.
SMERCONISH: Murdered by Mumia.
GLENN: I was just going to mention it. So you just did. So I'm going to have to charge you.
GLENN: What's the name? Murdered by who? What? Murdered by Mumia. It is a great book and Michael Smerconish has really followed this and isn't making a dime on the book and you should read it. If you are interested at all on seeing how justice can be turned upside down, this is the case and there's a win on our side this time. Thank you, Michael, appreciate it.
SMERCONISH: Thank you, Glenn.