Mike Huckabee's 'Very Honest Conversation' With Michelle Obama

Published February 22, 2010

| FoxNews.com

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," February 19, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE HUCKABEE, FOX NEWS HOST: The obvious question I have to ask you: do you ever watch Fox News?

FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA: I — you know what? I don't watch news that much.

HUCKABEE: But you will watch it this weekend?

M. OBAMA: I will, I will. I will absolutely watch it. You've got it.

HUCKABEE: All right.

M. OBAMA: I try to stay away from, you know, news because I want to formulate my opinions based on experiences that I have. So, you know I'll read clips, you know. I get headlines, but I tend — and I try to keep home kind of a news-free zone.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: That was just a portion of Mike Huckabee's exclusive interview with the first lady, Michelle Obama. Now, the interview will air in its entirety tomorrow and Sunday night at 8 p.m. right here on the FoxNews Channel. And here to give us a sneak peek of what the first lady had to say is the one and only Mike Huckabee.

Governor, welcome. How are you?

HUCKABEE: I'm doing great.

HANNITY: I want — I've been trying to get this interview. This is a great get. Congratulations.

HUCKABEE: Well, thanks. She was a delightful person with whom to speak. And we had, I felt, a very honest conversation, not just about childhood obesity, but about her year in the White House. I think it's going to surprise some people when they hear her talk about her relationship to this country and her love of country. It will be a surprise to many people.

HANNITY: I just was shocked that she doesn't watch this program every night. I mean, you know?

HUCKABEE: She probably does.

HANNITY: She does.

HUCKABEE: But she didn't want to admit that.

HANNITY: All right. Now, it's interesting. A lot of things that — that came up. For example, you asked her — and I'll get — I will concede this point. If you're in the public eye and you're the first lady, you've got young children, and your husband is president, I bet it's pretty tough. And you asked her about that. Let's roll this tape.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

M. OBAMA: And as you know that's part of politics today. You know? And the truth is that most of America isn't like that and they're tired of that. You know, they want folks to get stuff done.

The beauty of my job is that I get to see more of that America. And that feeds me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Now you were asking about the attacks on her and her family? Right?

HUCKABEE: And I mentioned the fact that she had had many vile and hateful things said about her, her husband, just as the Bushes — had been said about them.

HANNITY: And you when you were governor, I'm sure.

HUCKABEE: It's part of the deal. But it's difficult. And I asked her how does she handle that with her children? She's got two young daughters. And I guess my heart always goes out to people in public office who have kids. They have to put up with that.

I thought Michelle Obama was extraordinarily poised. She seemed to me very relaxed and comfortable in who she is. The image that sometimes was maybe ascribed to her as a person who is angry, not at all. If there was any of that...

HANNITY: She wouldn't show that to you, Governor.

HUCKABEE: You can see that in a person's countenance. You can see it if they're defensive. She was not defensive. She was relaxed, and she was open.

HANNITY: But what — how do we reconcile that with "For the first time in my adult life I'm proud of my country?"

HUCKABEE: Right.

HANNITY: Not — she didn't say it once. She said it twice.

HUCKABEE: And I want you to hear her tomorrow night. The full explanation of why...

HANNITY: This is such a tease. You couldn't give me that clip. That's the one I wanted.

HUCKABEE: Well, let me tell you something that I have some sympathy for her over. I have often been characterized by one sound bite, and people say that is the whole of Mike Huckabee, because we have him on this off-the-cuff moment.

HANNITY: But she said it, "For the first time in my adult life I'm proud of my country." I didn't get that. All right, now, if we juxtapose that, she in Reverend Wright's church for 20 years. Apparently closer to Reverend Wright than Barack Obama was, according to reports.

HUCKABEE: I did not ask her about Reverend Wright, because I was going to let you do that when you have her on...

HANNITY: When I have her on. OK.

HUCKABEE: ... "Hannity." Which I'm sure she'll do this now.

HANNITY: You're pretty sure, after this?

HUCKABEE: I'll tell you something. When you have her on, I'm going to warn you in advance. She is a very charming lady.

HANNITY: She might not be able to hold back her contempt for me. You're a little nicer.

All right. Let's go to this issue about Michelle Obama. And I might actually — no, I know for a fact, I agree with Michelle Obama. Watch this tape.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

M. OBAMA: You've inspired me to take on this issue. So it's because of that kind of courage and foresight and vision that we're here, so thank you.

HUCKABEE: I've been kind of off the wagon this last year, and I'm getting back on as a tribute to your efforts as "Let's Move," and hopefully before...

M. OBAMA: We'll work on our arms together.

HUCKABEE: I've got to work on more than just my arms.

M. OBAMA: Next interview, shirt off.

HUCKABEE: You don't want that.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Nobody wants that.

HUCKABEE: No.

HANNITY: But she — but she's right. You know what? I've struggled with my weight a little bit at times. I'm working out really hard now. I'm in good shape. A lot of families, a lot of people do. So she — I think that's a great position for her to take.

HUCKABEE: It's been a lifetime battle for me. It is for many Americans. And the really frightening thing is what is happening — what's happening with children. A third of the children of America are overweight or obese. Some people say, "Oh, that's just because you moved the numbers."

Here's what I say to people who don't think we have an issue with our children. Go back into your shoebox full of old pictures. Find the picture of you and your classmates in the third grade. We all have one. Take a look at it.

Then walk into any third grade, anywhere in America. Public or private school. Walk in a classroom and tell me, do you notice something different? And I promise you I'll never have to convince you again that the children of America are physically different than they were one generation ago.

HANNITY: I think that's a great cause, to call attention to a problem. We've got to get our kids in shape. You know, they spend too much on their computers, too much time with their iPods, too much time with the D.S.s, too much time with iPhone, whatever it is. So I agree with — I agree we need to fix the problem.

HUCKABEE: Seven and a half hours a day with electronics. One of the things that I asked her: do you think that this is going to be cured with a nanny state solution? What is the government's role? Who is the we?

HANNITY: What'd she say?

HUCKABEE: She said this, no, this is about parents. It's about pediatricians. It's about making sure that the role that the schools play in the school-lunch program. She does not believe that it is a government solution and that government should dictate what size cheeseburger you eat.

HANNITY: All right. Now — now that you met her, because look, you know my position. I think that both Michelle and Barack Obama are far more radical than they let on. Far more rigidly ideological than they let on. And they — as evidenced by their background and their history.

Am I wrong? Did you get a different impression? Do you think maybe it's a rush to judgment on my part?

HUCKABEE: I disagree with most of the president's policies on economics, on Middle East policy toward Israel. I disagree with his views on the sanctity of life and a host of other things. I do not necessarily believe that his motive is to destroy this country. I don't believe that.

HANNITY: I'm not saying that, but I think he is far more rigidly ideological than they let on. I don't think she's going to show you in this interview how...

HUCKABEE: No doubt he's way left of you and me. No doubt about that. But, on this issue, I think the first lady is right.

HANNITY: She's right on the issue. I'm not — I'm not doubting (ph) it.

HUCKABEE: And she is not taking a leftist position on it. And the conservatives are going to immediately say, "Oh, we're against this." They need to listen and — and be part of the solution.

HANNITY: Will Barack Obama sit down with you?

HUCKABEE: Well, I hope so. I'm...

HANNITY: I hope he sits down with me. I'm offering to buy the beer that he said we should have together.

HUCKABEE: And when you do, I want the pay-per-view rights, because that's going to be one heck of a television show. It will bust the Olympics.

HANNITY: I keep saying, in the spirit of spreading the wealth, I'm going to pay for it. What else can I do?

HUCKABEE: I just want to be there.

HANNITY: Governor, honestly, great interview.

HUCKABEE: Thank you.

HANNITY: Appreciate you being with us.

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