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Hannity

The Dean Machine Pumps for Kerry

This is a partial transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," July 26, 2004, that has been edited for clarity.

Watch "Hannity & Colmes" weeknights at 9 p.m. ET!

SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: Our continuing coverage of the Democratic national convention. As you can see over my shoulder, I'm right on the floor of the Democratic National Convention and they are getting ready now. It's going to be a very big night. Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton and they are getting ready at any moment to introduce former President Jimmy Carter and they are having a long intro.

We now welcome my colleague and our good friend Alan Colmes, is up in the studio. Alan, you're giving me the hard duty tonight.

ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: And we're talking to Dean.

HOWARD DEAN, FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hey, Alan.

COLMES: Thank you very much for being here. What are your thoughts as you look behind you and see what's going on here tonight?

DEAN: Well, Jimmy Carter is about to speak who's one of my heroes, who, in fact, got me into politics. So, you know, it's a great moment.

COLMES: You're going to speak tomorrow night.

DEAN: I am.

COLMES: There has been some talk about how Democrats have been coached about the tone, is that true? Have you been talked to by anyone?

DEAN: I have not been talked to about it, but I think it does makes a lot of sense. I think we have an opportunity now to get a message out about John Kerry. We know that people don't necessarily want to reelect George Bush. We've seen that. But they aren't going to elect somebody else unless they have confidence in him. And this is John Kerry's moment to shine, these four days.

COLMES: What are you going to say tomorrow night?

DEAN: Well, I'm not going to tell you what I'm going to say.

COLMES: Going to give us a little a preview?

DEAN: No, I'm going to say the things you'd expect me to say. I'm going to talk about hope. I'm going to talk about reclaiming America for ordinary people.

COLMES: Are you happy with the direction of this campaign and the way things are going for the Democrats?

DEAN: I am. If you look anywhere in the country, you're going to find John Kerry and John Edwards giving the message that we need to give: jobs, health insurance, better public schools, a foreign policy that's consistent with American values. Those are the kinds of things that the American people want in their president.

COLMES: I see a very big difference. Clearly we have a very big choice here. But I don't see that either party has really broken through yet. Why do you think that is?

DEAN: Well, I don't think people don't pay attention. This is summertime. The Red Sox and Yankees are still brawling and Lance Armstrong just won the Tour de France for the sixth time. You know, people don't pay attention to politics all the time, but they will. And I think they are starting to on a subliminal level.

COLMES: What do you want to hear John Kerry say on Thursday night?

DEAN: I want to hear John Kerry talk about his vision for America and I want him to tell us something about himself. I want Americans to understand this man who I very much hope is going to be the next president of the United States.

COLMES: Do you think it's going to be close, though? I mean, do you think anybody can really predict at this point what's going to happen?

DEAN: No, anybody who predicts who's going to win doesn't know what they're doing. This is going to be very close. It's going to come right down to the last couple of weeks.

COLMES: Do you look down at that floor and say there but for the grace of God go I, because there was that time when everybody thought it was going to be Howard Dean?

DEAN: You know, I don't really pay a lot of attention to that stuff. I don't look back very much. I am so focused on changing the country, on sending George Bush back to Texas for a permanent vacation that I really don't think about woulda, coulda, shoulda.

I think one of the reasons I'm like that is because both my kids play hockey — both my daughter and my son. I've probably watched over 1,000 youth hockey games. And, you know, you win a lot and you lose a lot, and some of them are close and some of them you lose in overtime and you wish the referee had said that or the defenseman had done this or the goalie had done that. It's woulda, coulda, shoulda. And it rarely pays to go back and say "If only, if only, if only."

HANNITY: Hey, Governor, it's Sean Hannity.

DEAN: They let you on the floor of the Democratic convention, Sean?

HANNITY: Can you believe it?

Governor, I can tell you the one thing, I'm calling it the "Reinvention Convention," and that is, you know, here leading up to this convention, we had people like Al Gore and Howard Dean, yourself — very critical of the president.

Ted Kennedy has been saying that he's a liar. And other people have been making all sorts of attacks. My question to you is: Is this contrived? Is this phony? Did we hear the real Democratic Party in the last year?

DEAN: I think what we're seeing is there was a lot of anger at George Bush. We didn't feel that he won fairly in Florida. We did feel that he sent us to war without telling us the truth about why we're going. There's a lot of stuff — we've lost a lot of jobs.

But I think what this convention really is, I hope, is a turning point. We can't win if we only have a negative message. Everybody understands that. So if we're going to win, we're going to have to have a strong, positive message coming out of the convention and that's what we're trying to do.

HANNITY: We weren't telling the truth about going into Iraq, but John Edwards and John Kerry both laid out the case about weapons of mass destruction the way the president did. Why does he get a pass from people like you?

DEAN: Well, there are other things that the president told us that were not so. There was no connection between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. Even the 9/11 commission just said so. There was no...

(CROSSTALK)

DEAN: No, that's not what they said. As a matter of fact, that's what they didn't say. And if you think they should, you should watch "Outfoxed." It's a great movie that says why people like you say things like that on this television station.

HANNITY: Well, the fact is they did say that there was correspondence. There was activity between the two. And, my only point to you is, John Kerry can say that there is a nuclear threat from Saddam Hussein, that his WMDs represent a real threat, but it seems the left gives him a pass. And George Bush is the only one who said these things now.

DEAN: George Bush wasn't truthful. I'm not saying George Bush is a liar, because I don't know that for a fact. I do know that George Bush didn't tell the truth. I don't know if he didn't tell the truth because he didn't know the truth, because his intelligence messed it up or the vice president's office told him something that wasn't so. But we know that the things that George Bush told us when we went into Iraq weren't true. And most Americans know that they weren't true.

HANNITY: Well, we know John Kerry, leading into this, Governor, he said that Saddam's WMDs are a real and dangerous threat to this country.

He said it only a year ago.

DEAN: That doesn't answer the question. The president of the United States tried to imply that Saddam had something to do with 9/11 and that was not true. He also tried to imply that Al Qaeda — and the vice president still does this to this day — that Al Qaeda was somehow connected with Saddam. And that was not true, and the president's commission said so.

HANNITY: All right. Governor, we're going to take a break and go take a look at former President Jimmy Carter who is now on the podium directly to my left.

DEAN: Thank you very much.

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