This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," August 31, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
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LAURA INGRAHAM, GUEST HOST: In the "personal story" segment tonight, are Democrats politicizing Ted Kennedy's death? Well, their new rallying cry for health care reform seems to be win one for Teddy. And a writer on the Huffington Post even invoked Kennedy's Chappaquiddick victim Mary Jo Kopechne (ph) in a discussion about the senator's legacy saying, quote, "We don't know how much Kennedy was affected by her death or what she'd have thought about arguably being a catalyst for the most successful Senate career in history. Who knows, maybe she'd feel it was worth it."
Wow. Joining us now from Detroit, radio talk show host Nancy Skinner. And, Nancy, we should say that this woman, I guess her name is Melissa Lafsky (ph), she does not work for the Huffington Post. She's not employed by them. They have, I think, have put up a couple of her blog posts over the past year. But this is a heck of a one to choose, is it not?
NANCY SKINNER, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: It's completely insane. I mean, it's outrageous to think that anyone would willfully give up their life, Laura in order for someone's political career, however outstanding that career was, absolutely. It's a ridiculous thing to say. I completely.
INGRAHAM: Why do you think the ...
SKINNER: Laura, you and I completely agree with something.
INGRAHAM: This is scary. Okay, the segment's over. Go to the -- no.
Nancy, but why do you think the Huffington Post, which has become, you know, a pretty big deal, you know, left leaning Web site across the United States, pretty big deal, why do you think the Huffington Post would link to this of all the things it could link to on Ted Kennedy's life? I mean, I know they have a variety of things on the Huffington post, but why this?
SKINNER: I don't know. I really - you know, I wouldn't know why or who chose it or why. I think it's an outrageous statement. And if I were the editor of the Huffington Post, I'd take it down and apologize. But to the point.
INGRAHAM: If I were Mary Jo Kopechne's family, I mean, I'd be pretty outraged. And I think if conservatives or Republicans did something similar, people would be outraged. But tell me why you think it's okay for people to be up there on Capitol Hill saying do it for Teddy? Why is that okay?
SKINNER: Well, I'll tell you why. You said are they using this -- Ted Kennedy's death? Ted Kennedy himself called it, health care, the cause of his life. Okay. So it's not using it, Laura.
And here's what really bothered me during this debate over the weekend on the radio. And we were all talking about it is that you had these moving eulogies by Orrin Hatch at obviously the services, but McCain, and Mitch McConnell saying, and even FOX News, the coverage said lion of -- liberal lion crossed party lines. Everybody said how wonderful and how he crossed party lines.
Now that he's gone, they can't see how health care can get passed because he's not there to do it. That's like using him as an excuse to bury health care reform along with him. You're eulogizing him and saying he went to your mother's funeral.
SKINNER: You loved him, but you can't do what it is he's done his whole career.
SKINNER: Not a single one of his dear friends can do what he's done.
INGRAHAM: But that's - right. That's not quite accurate though because over the last several months clearly, the Democrats haven't been saying let's do it for Teddy. Let's do it for Senator Kennedy. He's struggling for his life. And let's fight for it. I didn't hear that a lot over the last several months.
So only after his death, and after the polls show that the public basically doesn't want this whole Obama care thing, do they think okay, the whole rebranding, the first two times around hasn't worked. So now we're going to try this. And let me just play -- we have a sound bite of one of the prayers at the mass on Saturday. This is the funeral mass. And this was one of the Kennedy grand kids during the prayers. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For what my grandpa called the cause of his life, as he said so often, in every part of this land that every American will have decent quality health care as a fundamental right and not a privilege. We pray to the Lord.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
INGRAHAM: Nancy do you think that that adorable little boy came up with that on his own? It mean, it sounds like it's right out of Howard Dean's speech or something. Come on, this was politicizing the funeral.
SKINNER: But you know what? I've been -- I was there, Laura, at the convention when Ted Kennedy actually gave his last speech. And he was bed- ridden before he even gave that speech. So I'm telling you, he said this is the cause of my life. Everybody - 1960s.
INGRAHAM: Who cares?
SKINNER: I've been working on this.
INGRAHAM: Nancy, who cares? Who cares that it's the cause of his life? It's a sixth of our economy.
SKINNER: It's not just.
INGRAHAM: It's not a tribute to one man. This is our future.
INGRAHAM: This is our liberty and our freedom at stake.
SKINNER: That's why he worked on it.
INGRAHAM: It's not about Ted Kennedy.
SKINNER: What the calls are for, Laura, is for bipartisanship. If he crossed the line -- for Nixon, he got Nixon's cancer institute passed. And Nixon didn't want his name on.
INGRAHAM: Right, we're going back to Nixon for the bipartisanship.
SKINNER: He's done no child left behind. He's done lots of things. It's not about ted Kennedy. This is the thing. If we're going to look at a compromise on health care, which that's what everybody is talking about now. The far left wants single pair universal. That's gone. The far right wants the status quo. Well, these people are saying.
INGRAHAM: Far right?
SKINNER: (INAUDIBLE) for the American people.
INGRAHAM: Yeah. How about 55 percent of the country? Far right? I mean, I don't think that's necessarily working now when you look at these polls. It's broad based opposition. But Nancy, we appreciate it very much.
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