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Harold Koh's Views: Threat to Democracy?

This is a rush transcript from "Glenn Beck," April 2, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GLENN BECK, HOST: Now, this morning, I read a story in The New York Times about Harold Koh and how I have just taking this poor man out of context, how I just — I've been smearing him. President Obama's pick to become one of the State Department's top lawyers has ignited fury among his critics, this according to The New York Times. I guess I'm one of them now. His legal views are a threat to American democracy, I believe.

Jay Sekulow is here. He's the chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice.

You know what? I — Jay, I want to be really, really clear here, and I want to make sure we get all the facts exactly right because...

JAY SEKULOW, AMERICAN CENTER FOR LAW AND JUSTICE: Sure.

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BECK: ... The New York Times is an apologist for this guy and they say — oh, that Glenn Beck is, oh, well, he's just crazy, quote, "This is just an attempt to whip up hysteria."

So, tell me a little bit, in this man's own words, tell me who he is.

SEKULOW: He's a transnationalist. He believes that the United States' sovereignty and our judicial sovereignty should be subservient to the European Union or to the United Nations. I mean, if you look at what his written — this is not by the way, you know, some are criticizing, Glenn, that we are using this term "transnational" as if it's pejorative. This is the terms he uses.

BECK: Yes.

SEKULOW: He's written the law review articles that say he's a transnationalist.

BECK: Right.

SEKULOW: And I want everybody to understand this, what Justice Scalia said about 15 years ago. When the United States Supreme Court is determining whether something is constitutional or not, they are expounding on a Constitution. Europe does not have a Constitution, so applying European standards to the United States Constitution basically takes our United States Constitution and makes it a local law only to be superseded by the European Union. And I litigate cases in Europe.

BECK: OK. So, look, here's the thing. So people understand what transnationalism is.

SEKULOW: Sure.

BECK: and again, it's not a dirty word.

SEKULOW: No.

BECK: And this is how he describes himself.

SEKULOW: Absolutely.

BECK: What it means is — and correct me if I'm not wrong, it is — it is an evolutionary law. We no longer open up a textbook, go to any college and study the law. You're not going to see the quotes from the Founding Fathers or anything from the constitutional convention.

SEKULOW: Right.

BECK: You're going to see case law. This started in the 1920s, if I'm not mistaken. And what happened is, they started saying, wait a minute, evolution, if evolution is real well then people evolve, so must our understanding of things and so must the law. So now they just look to the future.

SEKULOW: Right.

BECK: And kind of sum and we continue to move forward. Now, it's moving into other nations, correct or not?

SEKULOW: It's even more — yes, it is correct, but it's even more than that. You mentioned the Darwinian aspect of this — it does have a Darwinian base and that over time, universal norms come into existence. And even where you have a national sovereignty, a United States Constitution, that document no longer becomes the charter document upon which the government in the United States is to operate.

BECK: Right.

SEKULOW: And we have to meet these systems from foreign countries and apply that to United States. And here's the real danger on this and this is a danger.

Now, here's the danger. Dean Koh is a smart guy, don't — listen, nobody should not question he's an intelligent guy. But what he is proposing is to take the State Department — he is not going to be a senior lawyer at the State Department, he is going to be the lawyer at the State Department, the chief counsel, and he is basically saying, we take our American experience and if it doesn't mesh with the rest of the world, the rest of the world wins.

And that, frankly, is — I call — it's — a lot of people are calling this "lawfare," it's utilizing the law as a weapon.

BECK: Oh, yes.

SEKULOW: And that's where you got to be very, very concerned.

BECK: And, America, you know this. When they can't get you to vote for something, they kick it up to the legal — into the legal system. If they can't win in the legal system, they kick it up to the United Nations or to the E.U. or whatever.

SEKULOW: Yes.

BECK: That's the way it works.

SEKULOW: And you really have to watch the U.N. issue here because — and we do a lot of work at the U.N. and here's the problem — you take those standards, for instance, the president has made the change now in the Human Rights Council, so the United States is going to join the Sudan and Cuba in the Human Rights Council. That's been not the policy for two decades. We've now changed that.

The danger, and to me, its significant is, again, it's subservient to our national interests, and what happens is, the international norms take over the U.S. norms.

BECK: OK.

SEKULOW: And the danger on that and the justices have said, be very careful when that starts happening because American sovereignty is at risk.

BECK: Real quick, I just have to say this because we have to go take a break.

SEKULOW: Yes.

BECK: The New York Times made this whole thing about he never called for Sharia law. I never claimed he called for Sharia law.

SEKULOW: Right.

BECK: What he was talking about, again, is transnationalism, that if this is something that is starting to grow around the world, well then the world is moving in that direction and we move as well. That is what transnationalism means, right or wrong?

SEKULOW: Look, they're doing — absolutely — they're doing that in the United Kingdom right now. They are applying Sharia courts.

BECK: I know. I know.

SEKULOW: So, it's absolutely that standard. And there you talked about the American people should understand what that means long-term for Americans' domestic interest, not good.

BECK: Thank you very much. I appreciate it.

Listen to me, America, I have never — I have never ever felt this way before, ever. And I started to feel it in the last couple of years, and now it is so strong. I'm telling you, you are being lied to. You are being lied to.

If the people at The New York Times don't know what transnationalism is, well, then maybe they should be fired or just wait until their paper closes, which is probably going to happen soon, or they're lying to you.

This is what it means, that if the world is moving in that direction, then we should, too, and we'll all just play happy together. It's dishonest what's going on.

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