Published March 11, 2008
This is a rush transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," March 10, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: Tonight we begin a brand-new segment called "He Said, She Said," where we'll deal with issues from a gender based point of view. The segment will run every Friday, but we wanted to debut it tonight with a very provocative question: What is the downside of having a woman become the president of the United States?
A recent CNN poll asked: Do you think America's ready for a woman president? 65 percent said yes, 34 percent said no and 1 percent apparently didn't understand the question.
With us now, Republican strategist and feminist Margaret Hoover, and from San Francisco, Marc Rudov, author of the book "A Man's No Nonsense Guide to Women." I've got to get that.
All right, Marc, now Hillary Clinton obviously in play. And we understand that you reference her. But this is a broader-based discussion about you get a woman in the Oval Office, most powerful person in the world, what's the downside?
MARC RUDOV, THE NONONSENSEMAN.COM: You mean besides the PMS and the mood swings, right?
O'REILLY: But guys have mood swings, Marc. And you know...
O'REILLY: ...they have other control issues, as we just heard with Governor Spitzer and we saw with various presidents. So come on now, let's be fair.
RUDOV: Well, you know, I'm joking of course. The main problem I have is if a woman has a female agenda. If she doesn't have a female agenda, if she just wants to be an executive for all the people, then all I care about is if she's qualified. And I have no qualms about having a female president.
But if we take Hillary Clinton, she specifically does have a female agenda. All you have to do is look at her Web site. Now let's go back a couple of months to around January 11, where she was campaigning in Las Vegas, and a man from the crowd — and you can check this out on the Internet — a man from the crowd yelled out, "Please help me. My wife is an illegal." And her response was, "No woman is an illegal." And that's exactly what I mean by a female agenda.
Now men, as you know, have lost a lot of rights in this country. We saw last year at Duke University three boys were falsely accused of rape, and absolutely nothing happened to Crystal Gail Mangum, who accused them of that. Not one politician stood up to say that's never going to happen on my watch. And so, I fault the males as well.
But Hillary embodies the female agenda. She wants to be the feminist in chief. She represents women. It says so on her Web site. And a lot of women are voting for her because she's a woman.
O'REILLY: All right, so...
RUDOV: Contrast that with Barack Obama.
O'REILLY: Let me — I want to get Margaret in here. OK, so as long as the woman, as you put it, doesn't have a female agenda when she gets power, it's OK. You say?
MARGARET HOOVER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: I say there is absolutely no problem with a woman being president of the United States.
O'REILLY: Even if they have a female agenda?
HOOVER: There's no problem with a woman being president of the United States if you take her gender as a sole issue. Gender shouldn't matter. As we all know there have been fabulous women chief executives: Margaret Thatcher, Golda Meir. This may be America's opportunity. I certainly hope not, because I don't agree with Hillary Clinton's policies. But this isn't going to be a gender issue. And that's what we see.
O'REILLY: Well, various people, various politicians have various points of view. You would see that. Men, women, it doesn't matter, right?
O'REILLY: OK. Marc is saying that Hillary Clinton is coming at it, raising the gender issue. And she, he thinks, is going to govern in that way.
HOOVER: I'm unclear as a senator that she's governed in that way. But she has certainly brought women's issues to light in a way that maybe a male senator from New York might not have. And I think that that's OK. People represent their constituencies and have particular interests based on who they are and the experiences that have formed them. You don't have to be a child to be an advocate for children. You don't have to be a woman to be an advocate for women. You don't have to be Hispanic to be an advocate for Hispanics.
O'REILLY: So it would be OK with you if a woman was elected president and then tilted her policies toward women? That would be all right with you?
HOOVER: Absolutely not because you're going to be president of the United States. You're president of women and men, African-Americans, Hispanics, everybody. So you don't run with identity politics. You don't run as a woman only representing women.
O'REILLY: But Hillary Clinton is.
HOOVER: I think she does indulge in identity politics and she uses it as her victimization card, which is unattractive, which is partly why I hope she's not elected.
O'REILLY: All right. Now Marc, if you had what you consider to be a straight down the line female president with no agenda, basically looking out for the folks and looking at every issue in an objective way, then you have no problem with a female as president?
RUDOV: No, I don't, as long as she's qualified. Absolutely not.
O'REILLY: Now qualified to you means what?
RUDOV: It means she has executive experience. And frankly, I don't think being in the Senate is executive experience.
O'REILLY: So she'd have to be a governor?
RUDOV: Well, yes. A governor who has run something, who's been responsible for a budget, who has had bicameral experience dealing with both sides of the aisle, who's actually been responsible for helping the people of a state. But again, profit and loss responsibility.
O'REILLY: All right. So I'm getting either a governor or a CEO of a major company. I'm going to give Margaret the last word.
HOOVER: Bottom line is, Bill, what this debate shows is that gender isn't a defining issue in our country. That's how far the women's movement has come, that suddenly we're talking about this. And really, she's...
O'REILLY: But you know some people are going to vote — some women are going to vote for Hillary because she's a woman.
HOOVER: And some are blacks are going to vote for Barack Obama because he's black.
HOOVER: And some white guys are going to vote for John McCain because he's an old white guy. But you know what? That's not the defining issue for the majority of Americans when they go to the polls in November.
O'REILLY: All right. "He Said, She Said," everybody. They're going to be back on Friday. And we appreciate it very much.
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