Glenn Beck on Town Halls, the Tea Party Express and ACORN

Published September 15, 2009

| FoxNews.com

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," September 14, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Glenn Beck is here. If anyone is talking about the passion of the protesters you just saw on tape, it's Beck. He's the author of the new book "Arguing with Idiots," hitting book stores on September 22nd. And moments ago, Glenn Beck went "On the Record."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

VAN SUSTEREN: Glenn, nice to see you.

GLENN BECK, HOST, "GLENN BECK": Good to see you, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: Glenn, these tea parties -- certainly a big day here in Washington on Saturday. What do you think about it?

BECK: I think that it doesn't matter if any newspaper published how many people were there. We had, where was it, University of Illinois, I think, did a -- you know, a spatial count and looked at the photos and said I think it was 1.7 million people there. It doesn't matter if they say there were three. The people's -- the people that are wandering the halls of Congress and the White House know exactly how many people were there.

VAN SUSTEREN: What about the composition of the people, the demographics?

BECK: What about -- I didn't...

VAN SUSTEREN: What about the demographics, I mean, the age, the background? What do you think about the type of people, you know, sort of the demographics of the people who were attending tea parties or protests?

BECK: You know, I don't know. I really haven't -- I mean, I guess I should look up closer to these people. I see right there in the front, it looks like young people, old people. I did hear -- how did Bill Maher describe them, geriatrics? I think they're Americans. What's the difference what they look like or what their age is?

VAN SUSTEREN: I guess what's sort of interesting to me is that, you know, typically -- and I guess there's no such thing as typically -- but typically, you know, I thought of protesters usually go almost as, you know, hippies, anti-war, but this is...

BECK: Oh, I see what you're saying.

VAN SUSTEREN: This is a different collection of sort of demographics.

BECK: Yes. These people have never really gotten off of their couch and never protested anything before. These people are, generally speaking, wildly uncomfortable doing this. However, I spoke to several of them earlier today on my radio program, and they all were saying the same thing -- I've never felt anything like it. It's -- I mean, it's -- it is something that people are feeling deep in their heart and connecting with others that feel like them. I think, A, it is a huge relief -- release of steam and tension. It's better to have these people connect like this then have them bottle it up and feel all alone. But these people are -- they've never done this before.

VAN SUSTEREN: What do they want?

BECK: I think they want their -- their voice to be heard. I think the White House couldn't handle it any worse than they already have. You know, the first time they Marched, on April 15th, they -- the White House came out said these tea partiers -- no, the president's not even aware of it going on. How do you dismiss what some are saying is one of the largest collections of marchers ever in Washington? How do you just dismiss that?

And they're dismissing it -- along with the media, they're dismissing these people as partisans. They're not. They want an end to corruption. They want people in Washington to start listening to them. They want Washington to slow down, read the bills, and explain it. Excuse me? You're saying your bill -- you're -- you're making jobs with your stimulus package? Well, we haven't seen that by any stretch of the imagination. And you know, any job that you're -- you're building right now when you're building, you know, polar bear exhibits at museums, that's not a lasting job! That's not one that's going to transform America.

VAN SUSTEREN: You know, in many ways, you are sort of the cable news poster child for these tea parties. Fair enough? Fair description? I mean, people sort of...

BECK: I guess it's fair to be able to say that on the fact that six months ago, I said that we need to reconnect with our values and our principles. And I laid out the 9/12 project, the 9 values and 12 principles, and that is part of what this has come out of. Yes, so I think that's fair.

VAN SUSTEREN: You know, it's interesting how in April, I think, people wondered whether this was a grass roots movement that was going to have some sort of life or sort of whether it was a fluke. And now we see more people gathered on Washington, but again, you know, it's got to think of (INAUDIBLE) is this something -- is there going to be more of this? Is this -- or is -- have we reached the end of it?

BECK: Oh, I have to tell you, I wasn't down in Washington, but I heard from people who were down in Washington, and they all said the same thing. We're coming back. We're going to do more. They're even more energized now.

Anybody who thinks this is going to turn into a political party should be very, very cautious because these people have not latched onto either political party. They are much more independent. They've been burned. The conservatives have been badly burned by the Republicans, and anybody who thinks they're going to come in and say, Yes, I'm just like you, and boy -- and then they're -- they're going to in and do the same kind of politics -- these people will back them into a corner so fast their head will spin.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You say they want to be heard. They want their members of Congress to read the bills. Are there any other sort of specific demands that they -- you know, they really want our government -- besides the sort of the, you know...

(CROSSTALK)

VAN SUSTEREN: ... but what specifically?

BECK: They want the spending to stop! Greta, everybody knows that we cannot continue this rate of spending. It doesn't make any sense. It gets to the point of criminal! Our children -- if I hear this from one, I've hear it from a thousand people that attend these, and that is, We've got to stop the spending! I'll pay the price! I don't care what it takes! I'll live the hard life if my grandchildren will still have an America that they can call home and recognize. Stop the spending and putting it onto the backs of our children and grandchildren! It makes sense whatsoever! It's irresponsible. It's criminal! It's criminal!

VAN SUSTEREN: Is there some -- is there some current politician who you think most identifies or is listening to the tea party protests or movement?

BECK: No. I mean, I think there are several that have been true to their own values for a while. I think Jim DeMint is one of those guys. I think Pence is one of those. I think Sarah Palin. But I don't think -- Palin is, I think, attractive to some of the tea party goers because the true tea party goers -- at least, the way I see it -- the true tea party goers or the true 9/12 people are the ones that say, Forget your party. Clean up. Take the beam out of your own eye before you look at the splinter in the other. And that is, I think, what needs to happen, and that's what Sarah Palin did that I think so many of the tea party goers find attractive. She took apart the Republican Party before she even thought about the Democrats. She took them down and cleaned up the corruption.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAN SUSTEREN: Coming up, more Glenn Beck. There is new and big trouble for ACORN. Last week, we showed you undercover video of ACORN employees giving business advice to a man posing as a pimp. Well, tonight there is another video. FOX has obtained a new, explosive video, and Glenn Beck is back later.

**********************************************************************************************************

VAN SUSTEREN: This is a FOX News alert. The Senate has voted to deny federal funds to the group ACORN. The amendment passed by a vote of 83-7 and prevents ACORN from receiving funds from a pending appropriations bill.

Last week four ACORN employees were fired after undercover videos exposed ACORN employees giving tax evasion advice to a man posing as a pimp and a woman pretending to be a prostitute.

There is new video tonight, a third video, all three videos shot by a filmmaker and his associate and then given to FOX News. This is the newest tape shot at an ACORN office in Brooklyn, New York.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She is in a unique line of work.

(Inaudible)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You find another name. Do not say that you are a prostitute, or whatever.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you recommend we say? That is what we have been struggling with. What are we going to call it? She's been working for this pimp who's been very abusive, and that's why we want to set up an independent business, because this guy is coming after us, and that is why we are in a rush. That's why I'm excited.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's not legal in New York. You cannot say what you do for a living. You have got to start thinking.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She is very honest.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Honest is not going to get you the house.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAN SUSTEREN: FOX News confirms that Brooklyn's district attorney has launched an investigation into ACORN. And moments ago, Glenn Beck went "On the Record."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

VAN SUSTEREN: Glenn, an awful lot of big news about ACORN staring a couple of days ago. What do you make of these videotapes, the most recent on in Brooklyn?

GLENN BECK, FOX NEWS HOST: Well, it is good that the department here in New York that oversees the mafia investigations is now going to look into the Brooklyn ACORN.

This is an absolutely corrupt -- from top to bottom, it is just a corrupt organization. And they are surrounding the president of United States. He is working with him side-by-side, and their sister organization, SEIU, to build health care.

Greta, tomorrow, I have an exclusive videotape of stop that will absolutely peel the skin off of your face. You haven't seen anything until you have seen the videotape that comes out tomorrow.

VAN SUSTEREN: Glenn, you say the organization is corrupt from top to bottom. Is it fair to say that the entire organization -- because it can be a big organization, and any group, there can be corrupt people?

BECK: No. I think some people in the lower levels that do not have any idea what's going on. The people we've seen on the videotape -- how many people do you have to have before -- that are saying, yes, it is alright, illegal prostitution with illegal aliens that are underage. I mean, wow, how many people in your organization that will do that?

But I think there are some people that have already come out and tried to stand against ACORN because they believe in the organization and what it was trying to do or what they originally thought it was.

This story is really not about the ACORN employees that you see in the tape. It is about the system that has been set up, very, very elaborate, that includes SEIU, and how they surround the president of the United States right now.

VAN SUSTEREN: You say it surrounds the President of the United States, but that's not to suggest that the President of the United States is saying bring in all the crooked stuff you can. You're not suggesting that. You're not suggesting the president has done anything wrong.

BECK: No. I think the president has insulated himself from all those kinds of things.

I would just like them to start asking the questions, how many little teeny whiffs of smoke do you have to see all around the president before you say, you know what? Either the president is setting a whole bunch of little fires, or is in on setting a whole bunch of little fires, or he is in danger. One of the two.

But you can't say that he is oblivious to all of this. SEIU, when you see -- remember, SEIU -- if you have the wallpaper, the picture of the funeral home down in Orlando -- I mean in New Orleans that you were playing a little while ago, it says ACORN- SEIU. They are sister organizations.

When you see who he has put around him, he has put around him, they are all SEIU members. All the health care was written by SEIU. How much federal money does -- is going to ACORN.

Somebody in this administration needs to stand up and say, whoa, I didn't know that this was going on. Can you imagine, Greta, any President of the United States allowing anyone any kind of access, even on the phone, that has anything to do with SEIU and ACORN after these tapes have been coming out, one right after another?

VAN SUSTEREN: I am with you on the individuals we know our criminals. Where you and I draw the line is I say there should be a comprehensive investigation, and I do not generalize to the whole group. But I'm willing to go through one by one.

BECK: Absolutely. Then help me out with this. The reason I make that leap is because nobody in Congress that is on the Democratic side, no one on Congress is calling for investigation. This is tax fraud. They are using our dollars.

VAN SUSTEREN: I am in favor of investigating to see if there is fraud.

BECK: Where is the president on that?

VAN SUSTEREN: And maybe he'll answer you.

Glenn, as always, thank you, and we'll be watching, as always. Thank you, Glenn.

BECK: You got it, thanks, Greta.

(END VIDEOTAPE)


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