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Do Democrats Want to Silence Dissent? Rep. Bachmann Responds

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

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: All right, so I have finally found one thing I like about the Democrats' health care bill. It turns out that Congress may be fined millions of dollars a year under its own bill because the bill kicks current members and their staffs off their health care plans.

So if Congress is subject to the $3,000 per employee fine imposed by the bill, it will be shelling out $50 million each year to the federal government. I guess you could call that the silver lining in this very dark cloud.

More HANNITY straight ahead.

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right, so Bill Clinton was not the only one drawing parallels between the GOP and the Oklahoma City bombing. Democratic congressman Betty McCollum joined the chorus, chastising her Republican colleagues on the House floor.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MCCOLLUM, D-MINN.: When members of Congress compare health care legislation to government tyranny, socialism or totalitarianism in the hopes of scoring political points it's like pouring gas on the fire of extremism.

I don't want another Oklahoma City to ever take place again. And just as we would not give aid and comfort to Al Qaeda let us not allow the words of elected leaders to give comfort and — comfortable excuses to extremists bent on violence.

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right, so are the Democrats just asked the Republicans to shut up? Joining me now with reaction is one of those pesky, wascally (ph) Republican, Congresswoman McCollum was probably talking, this is Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

So I guess you can't be critical. You can't say socialism exists. You can't be critical of government. I thought this was the highest form of patriotism when the criticism was aimed at George W. Bush.

Something has happened, I must have missed it. What happened here?

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN, R-MINN.: Apparently it is hate speech when it's on the right and it's not hate speech when it's on the left so, you know, go figure where that comes from.

But the main thing right now really is the government takeover of private industry and we're seeing that in one sector after another. And the worst is this new financial regulation bill where the federal government wants to decide who will get credit in the future in the United States.

They what to decide when a bank teller in Peoria, Illinois will make and they also want to give permanent bailout authority to the federal government and bypass Congress. That is the federal government coming in in a real thuggish way, if you will, and taking over the boardrooms of private industry.

This is what makes people very unsure about their government right now.

HANNITY: Well, I think a lot of people are raising very legitimate questions about the debt. About the deficits. About a weakening of our national security. About a lack of moral clarity in the War on Terror.

These are legitimate questions. And there seems to be a coordinated effort to intimidate, silence and demonize any critic of this administration, this House of Representatives, this leadership.

And you in particular have been singled out here. And I just want to know what do you think is behind this from your perspective?

BACHMANN: Well, one word that we've heard a lot just in this last week is the word "violence." And that when people on the right are disagreeing with the Obama administration that we're fomenting violence.

Well, I think violence is when the Democrat-controlled base, whether it's President Obama, Harry Reid or Speaker Pelosi — when they feel like their political position of power is being attacked, that's what they equate violence with.

But as a matter of fact, the First Amendment was written specifically to guarantee freedom of political speech. People have the right to disagree with their government, especially when they see these unprecedented actions that are taken by this president putting us in greater debt than we've ever seen, increasing taxes to a level that we haven't seen before, at least what they are talking about increasing taxes to.

And this very unprecedented level of the federal government taking over private banks, car companies, insurance companies, the federal government owning over half of all home mortgages taking over the student loan industry, health care.

HANNITY: Yes.

BACHMANN: Of course the people are reacting.

HANNITY: You see, and this is what is troublesome to me because the very same people that are now accusing any conservative critic of this incendiary language they were noticeably silent — we have a video of FALN terrorists — that Bill Clinton eventually pardoned — making bombs on video.

He gave them a pardon. They had very little interest in the relationship between Barack Obama, the candidate, and this unrepentant terrorist Bill Ayers. So there seems to be really a double standard.

I guess what I'm trying to get an answer to this question, though. Do you think this is a coordinated attack — in other words the echo chamber of the Democratic Party — do you think this is coordinated by all people on the left?

A strategy has emerged because it appears that they're all singing from the same hymnal at this point.

BACHMANN: Well, they are. If you look at all of the new shows over this last weekend, they used practically the identical language. They're talking about a war of words. They specifically identified Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin and they were — as you said they're singing off the same hymnal.

But essentially it's whoever they see as an effective voice that's who they go after and attack right now. But really the bigger issue in all of this is what is happening in Washington?

What's the federal government doing under the Obama administration. And this is serious. When you have the Obama administration, for instance, in this new financial control bill, financial services, suggesting that the federal government should decide who gets credit in the future or having permanent bailout authority in the future.

People are opposed to this. But they want to ram this bill through, just like they rammed through health care.

HANNITY: Yes.

BACHMANN: But the American people are saying no dice, we don't want to play this game any more.

HANNITY: You know the thing that I find most interesting is in the "Wall Street Journal" today is you have the guy, the president of the Pew Research Center basically saying the general public now wants government reform and its power curtailed.

BACHMANN: That's right.

HANNITY: So what I think has happened, and tell me if you think I'm wrong here, is I think conservatives have won the argument. They won the argument on health care. They forced it down our throat any way.

They're winning the argument on the size and scope and influence of government. And now the reaction is that to now just lash out at the messengers that are saying, you know what, we could do better with limited government, lower taxes and a strong national defense.

And this, you know, propaganda campaign — what do you think the net result is? Does it work? Does it backfire?

BACHMANN: Sure, that's all they have left now, is they use pejorative terms, hateful terms against those that are carrying the message. So whether they're attacking conservative talk radio, or conservative TV or whether it's Internet sites, I mean, let's face it, what's the Obama administration doing?

They're advocating net neutrality which is essentially censorship of the Internet. This is the Obama administration advocating censorship of the Internet. Why? They want to silence the voices that are opposing them.

Despite the fact that they continue to have much of the mainstream media still providing cover for all of these dramatic efforts that the Obama administration is taking. So they're very specifically and pointedly going after voices that they see are effectively telling the truth about what the Obama administration is trying to do.

HANNITY: Yes.

BACHMANN: The American people don't like it very much.

HANNITY: I think the narrative that the president is not the moderate that he ran as, and is far more radical, has taken hold.

BACHMANN: Without a doubt.

HANNITY: And I think that's very irritating to them.

BACHMANN: Yes. Without a doubt.

HANNITY: All right, Congresswoman, good to see you as always. Thanks for being with us.

BACHMANN: Thank you, Sean.

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