To watch "The Talking Points Memo" in the Screening Room click here.
I'm Bill O'Reilly. Thanks for watching us tonight. Profiting from malice. That is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points" memo.
I guess I have to deal with this Al Franken situation since it's in the papers, and our competitors will try to exploit it. Ordinarily, I would never deal with the likes of Franken, who is simply beneath contempt.
A few years ago he almost got into a fist fight with Sean Hannity, and a few weeks ago, he verbally assaulted Alan Colmes in public at a Washington dinner. The man is a fanatic and not worth anyone's time.
But I made a promise to my publisher, Broadway Books, to attend the Los Angeles Book Fair on Saturday, and Franken was on the panel. Everybody knew there would be trouble, but I keep my promises. The format was this. Molly Ivins, Franken, and I were all supposed to speak for 15 minutes and then take questions from the crowd. Fair enough. Ms. Ivans and I stayed within the allotted time, but Franken went on longer, mostly calling me a liar. After he was finished, I said this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
O'REILLY: All he's got in six-and-a-half years is that I misspoke, that a labeled a Polk Award a Peabody. He writes it in his book. He tries to make me out a liar.
AL FRANKEN, AUTHOR: No, no, no.
O'REILLY: Hey, shut up! You had your 35 minutes! Shut up! This is what this guy does. He demonizes it, all right? And then other people pick it up. Now, if it's important to you that I misspoke and labeled a Peabody a Polk, that's fine.
FRANKEN: You didn't just misspeak.
O'REILLY: That's fine, OK? This is what he does. He's a vicious -- and that is with a capital V -- person, who is blinded by ideology. You make a nice living being a propagandist, and more power to you. But don't put yourself up as a truth teller because you are not.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
O'REILLY: That's true. Now, if I sounded angry, I was. Imagine sitting next to somebody calling you a liar for that period of time. If that happened 200 years ago, there would have been a duel, and trust me, he would have lost.
This is just the second time in six-and-a-half years that someone has questioned my honesty. The first time was an editorial writer for "The Wall Street journal" over the Pat Roush Saudi Arabia situation. I called the man on it because we were honest right down the line, and I called Franken on his false assertions as well.
No American should allow anyone to question his or her integrity without response. If you know Franken, you know he loves this stuff because he makes money from it. He profits from malice. He put out a book calling Rush Limbaugh crude names, and now he's doing the same thing again.
In the end, this is not important. Few care what Al Franken thinks. But my personal code calls for confronting personal insults, and I did. But it ends here. We have much more important things to deal with.
And that's The Memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day"...
Father's Day is closing in, and it would be ridiculous if you didn't get him anything. And here's what Dad wants. The new "Spin Stops Here!" doormats are in. They sold out in a hurry a couple of weeks ago. So take note. These are a must for every father who wants to send a message don't tread on me. Pun intended.
Also last call for signed books for Dad. Both the mats and books are available on billoreilly.com, and the world-famous Factor gear, which is on our Web site, The Factor Web site -- we'll give you that address in a moment. All right. Hey, guys, you don't want to go to the mall this weekend, OK. Right here.