This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," August 13, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: DNC chairman Tim Kaine tells the Republicans and the tea parties, Go ahead, make my day.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIM KAINE, DNC CHAIRMAN: We actually feel like the Republican tea party is putting up candidates that is enabling us, frankly, to have some really good shots at winning races that a few months ago seemed very, very tough for us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, is that true? Joining us live is former senator Rick Santorum. But before we get to that, there's breaking news tonight that the president has said that he endorses the -- under freedom of religion the right of the Muslims to put the mosque near Ground Zero.
RICK SANTORUM, FORMER PENNSYLVANIA SENATOR: Well, I -- three quick comments about that. Number one, Islam is not just a religion. He said we need -- you know, we have to have -- practice freedom of religion. That was his term. And Islam is not just a religion. It is also a political doctrine. It is also a way of governance. That's what Sharia law is about. So number one, it's misunderstanding and -- and -- what Islam and radical Islam is all about, number one.
Number two, the mosque is being run by a guy who says that the United States was an accomplice, and you know, brought about the events of 9/11. Now, that's a man who's now going to build a mosque next to 9/11. My analogy there is if you can imagine someone who preaches in his church racial separation and that Martin Luther King had it coming to him because he brought it upon himself to build a church right next to where Martin Luther King was shot. I don't think Barack Obama would say, Well, we have religious tolerance, we're going to allow them to do that.
That is -- that is the wrong way to look at this! This is not whether it's a legal right to do it. People have legal rights to do a lot of things in this country. But we have zoning laws, and we have an issue that I think is very important. We have the will of the American public.
If this imam wants to engender (SIC) himself -- that's why he says he's doing it. He wants to, you know, reach out to the American public by building this, and 70 percent of the American public say, We don't want this and a vast majority of New Yorkers say, We don't want this, then I don't know why he continues to want to build it. He's now ignoring the will of the American public, as, by the way, Barack Obama is by siding with him, and not accomplishing his purpose. So if he's not accomplishing his purpose, what is he doing this for?
VAN SUSTEREN: I'm curious -- and I -- maybe she has spoken out, but Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, since she was the United States senator from New York -- I'm curious what her position is on this because this is really something that is, you know, quite sensitive to so many people.
SANTORUM: It is -- obviously, you can tell it's sensitive. This is - - this is -- I -- you know, you were talking about Tim Kaine. And my comment on Tim Kaine is really the same with Obama. He is ignoring the will of the American public. What Tim Kaine was saying with the tea parties is, you know, these people, you know, they -- they -- you know, they -- they -- they're going to be easy for us to beat because they're not like, well, what the Washington insiders think a candidate should be like. You're right, they're not! They're people from -- they're average Americans coming out here who are mad at Washington, and they don't look like, in some cases, the average candidate that Republicans and Democrats put up. But you know what? That's what America wants!
VAN SUSTEREN: I think that -- I think his mistake is he thought that it divided the Republican Party, and I think -- you know, I think what it's done is it's energized a whole bunch of voters. And I -- and I don't think the voters necessarily -- they're going to be -- I think (INAUDIBLE) they're independent or Republicans. I don't know if there were a lot of Democrats in there. And come November, I think there's going to be a race to the polls, you know?
VAN SUSTEREN: You know, and I think they're going to stampede for the polls.
SANTORUM: The intensity level among Republicans and independents who are leaning Republican is through the roof because they see not just the policies that are going on -- and that's why these two stories really tie together. They see the arrogance of people who think they know better than the American public, that, yes, we're going to side with...
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, you've also got the health care, too.
VAN SUSTEREN: The numbers (INAUDIBLE) health care is another example...
SANTORUM: Sure, but that...
VAN SUSTEREN: ... where the American people...
VAN SUSTEREN: ... the numbers were opposed to -- you know, opposed to it and it -- and it was passed.
SANTORUM: It's this -- I was talking to a guy today. I was getting my phone fixed at Verizon and...
SANTORUM: And he -- an hour and a half...
VAN SUSTEREN: I'm not going to ask what happened to your phone, right?
SANTORUM: An hour and a half -- well, I had to get a new -- my wife wanted -- Karen (ph) wanted a new phone. So anyway...
VAN SUSTEREN: Now it's Karen's fault!
VAN SUSTEREN: Somehow, it's the woman's fault! His wife, Karen! I knew it!
SANTORUM: I was happy to do -- to be there. But I...
SANTORUM: ... a little over an hour and...
VAN SUSTEREN: I'm not sure my husband would have gone to Verizon for an hour for me!
SANTORUM: I did. But it was -- it was great...
VAN SUSTEREN: He loves me, but not that much!
SANTORUM: You wait there in the queue for an hour. But anyway, so I -- I -- the man -- the man said to me -- Barry (ph) said to me -- I remember his name. He said just, I feel like there's a ruling class of people who think that they know better than me on everything, and they don't really give a damn what I think.
And here's another example, with Obama and the mosque, that he just doesn't give a damn what the people of New York want to do! They don't -- He doesn't give a damn what the people of America -- he's like the imam who doesn't give a damn! That is -- that to me is someone who is truly out of touch with America in a way that I think is just dangerous for a president to be.
VAN SUSTEREN: I'm anxious to see what the newspapers say tomorrow on this one.
SANTORUM: He -- going again the will of the American public, claiming religious liberty when this is clearly not a religious -- I'll give another example, Charlie Krauthammer did it today in The Washington Post, where he said -- he talked about John Paul II, where the -- where the nuns wanted to build a convent outside of Auschwitz to pray for the souls of those who died in the prison camps. But the Jewish community was offended by that, that a Christian convent would be built right next to Auschwitz. And so they had the right to do it, but John Paul II, you know, after they had their day in court, if you will, basically (INAUDIBLE) You have the right to do it, but don't do it because it's not what is going to create unity. It's not what's going to do -- be the right thing for everybody involved. And so they moved it down the -- down the road.
Build a mosque. Build 20 mosques in New York, if you want to. But don't do it in a -- in a way that's going to going to desecrate -- in my opinion, desecrate the ground of those who were murdered by people who practiced the faith, or at least an element of the faith that is being represented by that mosque.
VAN SUSTEREN: Senator, thank you. And we're going to be talking to you Monday. You're going to be on the road.
SANTORUM: I'll be where Mr. Gingrich...
VAN SUSTEREN: At the fair!
SANTORUM: I'll be in Sioux Center, Iowa, on Monday.
VAN SUSTEREN: I'm just so surprised how many of you Washingtonians love Iowa fairs! It's just so -- it's so...
SANTORUM: I love...
VAN SUSTEREN: ... heartwarming.
SANTORUM: I love fairs. I used to go to fairs all the time in Pennsylvania. I hear has a great one.
VAN SUSTEREN: I bet it is. Anyway, thank you very much.
SANTORUM: Thank you, Greta.