This is a rush transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," November 18, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: And this is a "FOX News Alert." According to reports former Clinton deputy attorney general Eric Holder is President- elect Obama's top choice to be the United States attorney general.
That's right, another Clintonite lands in the Obama White House, now there's change for you. But that's not all. What is sure to be a contentious issue over the next couple of months is going to be Holder's involvement in the now infamous Clinton pardon of billionaire financier Marc Rich in 2001.
Now, Rich, you'll remember, was charged in 1983 for $48 million worth of tax evasion. He was indicted on 51 counts of tax fraud and was accused of illegally trading oil with Iran during the Iranian hostage crisis between 1979 and 1981.
Now Rich fled from prosecution. He renounced his United States citizenship, then Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder was in charge of reviewing the pardon requests, and had discussions about the Rich pardon with Rich's attorney Jack Quinn, who's also a former Clinton White House counsel.
Holder also testified to Congress that he didn't properly vet the Rich pardon and that if he had it to do all over again, he would have stopped it. Translation, he didn't do his job.
This is going to be a huge story in the weeks to come, and we'll continue to provide you with all the details about this story as it moves forward, but joining us tonight, first, is Minnesota Republican congressman, Michele Bachmann. Is
First of all, is this like — every single — 31 of 47, Hillary, secretary of state, now he got Eric Holder here, now he got the Marc Rich pardon. We've got every Clinton scandal coming into play. Is it — do you see this as change?
MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA CONGRESSWOMAN: No, I don't think any American sees this as change. This is more like back to the future, because we're going for all the retreads back from the Clinton years. They were all being paraded again in front of the American people.
So we aren't seeing changing, we're seeing more of the same.
HANNITY: Yes, you know, then we also have Greg Craig. He's back in the scene here and of course he was the attorney for John Hinckley, the guy that shot President Reagan. He was also the guy that was — you know, basically working on Elian Gonzalez for Fidel Castro. He worked with groups tied to the Sandinistas.
But look at Eric holder, involved in the seizure of Elian Gonzalez and the return to Cuba, involved in the Rich pardon.
You know, Michele, I'm reading this. They don't care, meaning the Democrats and the Obama campaign, they don't know because they know they've got the votes to get these guys cleared.
HANNITY: Go ahead.
BACHMANN: The main thing is, Sean, what will the — will the American people care? And I think the American people will care. They put a lot of hope and a lot of trust in Barack Obama as a president-elect, and they're going to look very closely at who his appointees are.
To choose someone like Eric Holder who is responsible not just for the Marc Rich pardon, but remember that was a Christmas tree that year, and President Clinton had.
BACHMANN: . had given more pardons that I think any other previous president, so I think all of these individuals will be vetted by the American people, and they'll be the ones ultimately that count with their opinion.
HANNITY: Well, what do you make — he defended the use of guns in the Elian Gonzalez case, the use of guns, when they seized this kid, you know, out of his home that one night, if you recall.
He also was responsible, played a pretty major role in the granting of clemency to 16 members of the FALN. And I'm wondering do you think the American people now are going to take notice since almost every appointment — Podesta and Rahm Emanuel, Rahmbo, and Hillary Clinton, and all these other guys — do you think they'll take notice of this and do you think it'll matter?
BACHMANN: They will take notice of it because shows like yours are bringing these facts up to the fore. This won't get swept under the rug because, remember, these first appointments from the Obama administration are the critical appointments because they say a lot about Barack Obama.
That's really what's called into question. What this says about the values that the president-elect hold.
HANNITY: All right. Let me ask about, here you are in Minnesota, we've got a Senate race, 206 votes, it was certified, as I understand it today. Al Franken tried to.
BACHMANN: 215. Today it was certified at 215 votes.
HANNITY: I'm sorry, I stand — I didn't know — they actually gave Norm Coleman a couple of votes. I thought they all went to Franken.
BACHMANN: Hey, hey, every — every vote counts right now. So — they're all important.
HANNITY: All right. 215. The Franken camp wanted to sue — it seems like he wants to get this by litigation. He's got Al Gore coming in there, he's got a battery of attorneys, he's trying to act as though he's senator and going to Washington.
Do you suspect that there might be some funny business going on, and do you think this recount is going to confirm these results?
BACHMANN: Well, what we know is that yesterday Al Franken filed a lawsuit, and it's to — it's to force the state canvassing board to add in rejected absentee ballots and rejected provisional ballots, so these were objective people who weighed in, who said these ballots aren't good, but in order to be able to get over the top, Al Franken wants to bring in rejected ballots, so in other words, Sean.
HANNITY: But why.
BACHMANN: . he wants to stuff the ballot box with rejected ballots.
HANNITY: All right. He wanted to do that, we found, what, 30 some odd ballots in a car, and then we didn't find them in the car, so there was some dispute over that. But more importantly it seems like every time that — this was before a recount even began.
Every county, these heavily Democratic counties started oops, oh we found a hundred votes here. We found 300 votes here. Why do I suspect funny business? And do you suspect it as a potential?
BACHMANN: Well, it's interesting, and I think it calls into question what the record keeping is and who is watching the books, because two of these cases, one, Sean, that had a hundred votes deducted from Coleman, added to Franken, those 100 votes came after business hours when no one was around.
Another one had 17 votes coming out of a Democratic county. Again, where it was after business hours where no one was around.
ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: Hey, Congresswoman, it's Alan Colmes. Welcome to our show.
BACHMANN: Hi, Alan.
COLMES: First of all, good to see you. The 32 — those votes have been discounted as — in terms of they're legal, everybody even the lawyer for Coleman agrees they're legal.
HANNITY: I said this.
COLMES: So if they're going to go there, and steal 100 there or 17, they can do better, steal a thousand. You know? Do better than that.
BACHMANN: But isn't it — isn't it curious that all of these votes are for Franken?
COLMES: No, it's not.
BACHMANN: There isn't one vote found for Coleman?
COLMES: They found actually nine votes today for Coleman, but they're not all for Franken.
BACHMANN: That's on the actual recount where they were found.
COLMES: On the recount. There should be a recount.
BACHMANN: Not in somebody's trunk of their car.
COLMES: Well, there was nothing in the trunk of a car that was found to be untoward or inaccurate, or not countable. So that's been discounted.
Let me go back to Holder for a second. Are you suggesting to me that he is not qualified to be the attorney general of the United States having served honorably as a deputy attorney general for Bill Clinton?
BACHMANN: Well, Eric Holder himself admitted that he acted incorrectly with the Marc Rich situation. This is very significant. The pardon that Bill Clinton issued to Marc Rich. This is very significant.
Eric Holder admits that he made an error.
COLMES: Yes. He didn't say — he said - yes.
BACHMANN: Barack Obama will look to Eric Holder for advice, and we've already seen the kind of advice that he's given former President Clinton.
COLMES: So let's say we're to give you that. Actually what he said was knowing everything he knows now, in retrospect, he wouldn't have done it. But should that one issue get in the way?
BACHMANN: Well, that isn't the only issue. You heard Sean go through a number of different issues that Eric Holder was involved in. This is the number one person in the country as the attorney general, and, again, it calls into question Barack Obama's judgment with who he's choosing for very key appointments.
COLMES: Well, of course you're going to — let me ask you very quickly. You've said you were concerned during the campaign that Obama had anti-American views. You said the news media should do a penetrating expose and take a look at the views of the people in Congress and find out if they're pro or anti America.
BACHMANN: Actually, that's not what I said at all.
COLMES: Well, I'm just — I'm reading your exact quote.
BACHMANN: Actually that's not I said. It's an urban legend that was created. That isn't what I said at all.
COLMES: We have — it's on tape. I have the tape on my Web site, Alan.com
BACHMANN: What I called on, Alan.
BACHMANN: . was for the mainstream media to do their job. They failed to vet Barack Obama the way that they had John McCain. And that's what I was calling for.
COLMES: You exact words were take a great look at the views of the people in Congress, find out if they're pro-America or anti America. Do you really want that kind of.
BACHMANN: Well, what I said is that I'm not qualified to say whether members' views are pro or anti-American. That's not my job to do that.
COLMES: But you want it to look into by the media.
BACHMANN: The mainstream media needs — no, what I — that's not at all what I said. What I was talking about is the mainstream media doing their job.
COLMES: Should the media should do a penetrating expose and take a look at the views of people in Congress, find out if they're anti-America or pro-America? What would you say?
BACHMANN: Well, and what I said is do your job. That's what it came down to.
COLMES: All right, Congresswoman.
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