This is a partial transcript from The O'Reilly Factor, February 6, 2002. Click here to order the complete transcript. 

 

BILL O'REILLY, HOST:   In the "Impact" segment tonight, President Bush's budget calls for increased spending, especially in defense and education.  The budget would put the USA into deficit, but the Bush people say that when the economy rebounds, the surplus will return.  Who knows?

One of the proposals drawing some fire is $100 million grant aimed at encouraging low-income couples to marry.  States which showed a drop on single-parent homes would get federal money.

Joining us now from Washington is Kim Gandy, the president of the National Organization for Women, who opposes that program.  Why, Miss Gandy?

KIM GANDY, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR WOMEN:  I think it's tragic to take money out of poverty programs that are already underfunded and shunt it off into an area that is not established to make any difference in poverty.  Poor people get married for the same reasons that all of us do, for love, compatibility, companionship.  They don't get married because somebody threatens their livelihood or threatens the advancement of their children if they get married.

O'REILLY:  All right.

GANDY:  That's a terrible basis for a marriage.

O'REILLY:  But you would admit that if you're a single mom and you get -- and your -- you know, who ever you -- fathered your child leaves, that you're likely -- more likely be poor, because the statistics are unbelievable.  You know that.

GANDY:  Right, there's no question.  And to say to these women, who the father of their children has abandoned them or abused them, to say, You've got to track him down and marry him or your child's not going to get into Head Start, or your check is going to be reduced, that's a terrible...

O'REILLY:  No, but they're not going to...

(CROSSTALK)

GANDY:  ... package.

O'REILLY:  ... they're not saying that.  They're saying, Look...

GANDY:  But they have, but they have been saying that.

O'REILLY:  No, they haven't.

GANDY:  They've proposed -- they absolutely...

O'REILLY:  Here's the program.  The program says...

GANDY:  The Fathers Count Act...

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY:  ... the program --  Miss Gandy...

GANDY:  ... proposed exactly that.

O'REILLY:  ... the program on the federal level says, "Each state can devise its own program to encourage poor people to marry.  The states that are more successful get more federal money."  That's the program.  The individual state...

GANDY:  Right, (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

O'REILLY:  ... can do whatever they want.  I would suggest massive counseling...

GANDY:  Wait, they offer...

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY:  ... and education.

GANDY:  ... they offer bounties, for example.  There are states that say, you know, If you get married, we give you $5,000...

O'REILLY:  A state can do that.

GANDY:  ... there are all kinds of --  Absolutely, a state can do that.  I think it's a terrible thing, for somebody who is not ready to get married, doesn't have somebody they want to get married to, to dangle $5,000...

O'REILLY:  Well, look, I mean...

GANDY:  ... over their heads to say, I do, I mean, don't you think the divorce rate...

O'REILLY:  Sure, and I wouldn't...

(CROSSTALK)

GANDY:  ... is high enough without...

O'REILLY:  ... dangle anything...

GANDY:  ... artificial -- without artificially...

O'REILLY:  ... I would make the couple...

GANDY:  ... raising it?

O'REILLY:  ... undergo counseling and if they qualified, they'd get it.  But look, 58 percent of single-mom homes are on welfare, 58 percent.

GANDY:  No, that's actually...

O'REILLY:  That's the true...

GANDY:  ... not correct, that is -- there is no way 58 percent of all...

O'REILLY:  That's the stat!

GANDY:  No, it's totally -- you're totally reading it wrong.

O'REILLY:  Don't give me that.  Don't give me that.

GANDY:  It's not even close.

O'REILLY:  You're wrong.

GANDY:  Not even close.

O'REILLY:  All right, it's 58 percent.

GANDY:  There are (UNINTELLIGIBLE), there are millions and millions of single-family homes -- single-parent homes in this country...

O'REILLY:  Fifty-eight percent...

(CROSSTALK)

GANDY:  ... and a very small fraction of them...

O'REILLY:  ... of single-mother homes...

GANDY:  ... are on welfare.

O'REILLY:  ... are receiving government assistance, according to the federal government.

GANDY:  It's -- well, I think you're...

O'REILLY:  Now, look...

GANDY:  ... misreading it here...

O'REILLY:  What do you -- don't...

GANDY:  ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

O'REILLY:  ... you can't say no, Miss Gandy, that's the stat.  You can't just dismiss it.

GANDY:  You're clearly misreading them.  It's just not the case.

O'REILLY:  Oh.  I'm not misreading it.  It's 58 percent.  That's what it is from the federal government.  If you choose not to believe it, fine.

GANDY:  Well, you know...

O'REILLY:  That's what the stat is.

GANDY:  ... whatever -- what -- you know, I think the stats are -- you're completely misreading them, but...

O'REILLY:  OK, I'm not misreading it...

(CROSSTALK)

GANDY:  ... whatever the case...

O'REILLY:  ... that's what it is.

GANDY:  ... promotion of marriage, I mean, the -- it...

O'REILLY:  And 52 percent of all...

GANDY:  ... it doesn't (UNINTELLIGIBLE) inappropriate...

O'REILLY:  ... of African-American families...

GANDY:  ... to engage in social engineering with poor families that you would not think about doing...

O'REILLY:  Oh, this is a...

GANDY:  ... with middle class families.  I mean, would you say to someone,  You can't get a Small Business Administration loan unless you get married?

O'REILLY:  Has nothing to do with that.

GANDY:  Would you say to someone, Your child can't get health...

O'REILLY:  It has nothing to do with that, Miss Gandy.

GANDY:  Oh, absolutely (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

O'REILLY:  You're going off the wall here.  You are going absolutely...

GANDY:  ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY:  ... off the wall on this broadcast...

GANDY:  ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE) who was George Bush's...

O'REILLY:  ... and I'm stunned.

GANDY:  ... leader on this issue has said that if the parents aren't married, that the children go to the bottom of the list for federal services like Head Start.  And children of married parents...

O'REILLY:  That -- that is -- all right, who said that?

GANDY:  Wade Horn.

O'REILLY:  Who?

GANDY:  He is the assistant secretary of health and human services...

O'REILLY:  All right, we'll try to call that quote up.

GANDY:  ... the former head of the Fathers...

O'REILLY:  I never heard of about that...

GANDY:  ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

O'REILLY:  ... and I don't even know who that guy is.

Now, listen...

GANDY:  Well, you should know who Wade Horn is, you're going to talk about...

O'REILLY:  ... 52 percent -- here's another stat...

GANDY:  ... this issue, because he...

O'REILLY:  You're filibustering, Miss Gandy.

GANDY:  ... is absolutely the architect...

O'REILLY:  Miss Gandy, you're filibustering.

O'REILLY:  ... he is the architect of this -- I'm -- I can't believe you don't know who Wade Horn is.  He's the architect of this whole plan.

O'REILLY:  OK, maybe that's my ignorance, and I apologize for it.

GANDY:  But he's...

O'REILLY:  I deal in statistics.  My first statistic was correct, and here's another one that's correct, 52 percent of all black single-mom households, 52 percent, OK, are unmarried, 52 percent.

GANDY:  You just said 56 percent of all...

O'REILLY:  This leads directly into poverty.  See?  This is what you say you want to fight.  Encouraging marriage might lift those people out of poverty.  If you have counseling and education saying, Don't get yourself into this, which is what the states would be doing with the federal money, OK?

GANDY:  No, but this is not saying, Don't get into this, it's saying, Get into this.  It's saying, Get married.  And I think people who don't want to marry...

O'REILLY:  It's saying it's better for you...

GANDY:  ... who don't have a mate that they want to marry...

O'REILLY:  ... if you are married.

GANDY:  You know...

O'REILLY:  It's saying it's better for you if you are married.

GANDY:  ... individuals are not statistics.  Certainly if you look overall, married couples generally have more income than singles... ...

O'REILLY:  Correct.

GANDY:  ... whether they have kids or not, because you have two incomes in the family if they're both working.  But those are not people that you're talking about, those are statistics.  For individual people, marriage may or may not be the right choice, especially if the person...

O'REILLY:  Society has an obligation...

GANDY:  ... that you're talking about is an abuser...

O'REILLY:  Society has an obligation...

GANDY:  ... or someone who is irresponsible.

O'REILLY:  ... Miss Gandy, to encourage stability.  Single-mother homes lead to poverty.

GANDY:  Stability -- you know what?  Education...

O'REILLY:  Every statistic shows that.

GANDY:  ... is a great -- education is a great...

O'REILLY:  And you don't want to encourage marriage.

GANDY:  ... avenue to stability.

O'REILLY:  You don't want to encourage it...

GANDY:  Why do these same programs...

O'REILLY:  ... and that is wrong.

GANDY:  ... not allow these women to get a college degree?  Wouldn't a college degree provide stability?

O'REILLY:  It's off the wall.

GANDY:  A college degree would provide a lot more stability...

O'REILLY:  Doesn't have anything to do with college degrees...

GANDY:  But it does, it has -- it has everything...

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY:  ... or small business.

GANDY:  ... to do with college degrees...

O'REILLY:  It does not.

GANDY:  ... if this money went into educating poor women, then they'd be able...

O'REILLY:  Miss, Miss Gandy...

GANDY:  ... to support their families.

O'REILLY:  ... Bush has upped the education budget by 12 percent.

GANDY:  Not for women on welfare.

O'REILLY:  For everybody!

GANDY:  Not for women on...

O'REILLY:  For everybody!

GANDY:  That's just not true.  They're allowed to get one year of college and be on one year of college...

O'REILLY:  Not if they live in New York City.

GANDY:  ... they cannot continue.

O'REILLY:  They can get four years of college, flat-out free.

GANDY:  But it's no thanks to the administration.  That's totally...

O'REILLY:  But you're -- listen, you're not...

(CROSSTALK)

GANDY:  ... a local program.

O'REILLY:  ... telling the truth.  You just said they can only get one, and then I give you a stat, and then you go but-da (ph).

GANDY:  The federal welfare, the federal welfare act that we are talking about reauthorizing this year limits one year of education...

O'REILLY:  But the state can override...

GANDY:  ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

O'REILLY:  ... all of that, Miss Gandy...

GANDY:  ... California, some parts of California...

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY:  ... and you know it.

GANDY:  ... allow two years.

O'REILLY:  All right.

GANDY:  Most states don't have the funding to do that.

O'REILLY:  We will document that statistic that you denied.  We will do that in the latter part of the broadcast.  We appreciate you coming on.

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