Interviews

Palin Reacts to Obama's Oval Office Address on Gulf Disaster

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," June 15, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: Joining us from Wasilla,

Alaska, former governor of that state, Sarah Palin. All right, did you

have a big beef with the president tonight in any way, governor?

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SARAH PALIN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: I did. I kind of

have a big beef with you too though, Bill, if you don't acknowledge

that President Obama is wrong on his call for a need for energy policy.

Certainly we need that, but he is wrong not to acknowledge that we

still need on a three-legged stool the conventional sources of energy

to be drilled here. Otherwise, Bill, we are going to be dropped to our

knees and bowing to the Saudis and Venezuela and places like Russia

that will keep producing oil and petroleum products, and we will have

to ask them to produce for us because we will still be dependent upon

these sources of energy.

In addition though, too, shifting more towards the renewables which,

of course, we need. And the other leg of that stool is conservation.

President Obama, it scares me, it saddens me that the CEO of our nation

does not understand that inherent link between the conventional sources

of energy that we're dependent upon and our security, our prosperity,

our freedom.

O'REILLY: OK, what was the — when you were the governor of

the state, you dealt with oil companies all the time. What was the most

difficult thing that you had to deal with when you were having meetings

with them face to face?

PALIN: Believing that their perception of what the

circumstances were in any situation that we dealt with them, whether it

be a spill or lax infrastructure maintenance or the value of the

resource that was being sold. In any of those issues, it was believing

what they were telling me and my administration in terms of their

perspective on what the facts were.

Now, here's where the problem lies with President Obama in waiting

so long, you know, eight weeks before meeting with the CEO of BP and

with the high-ranking officials that have been calling the shots. He

has allowed this industry player to get to define the facts. So they

are just in this position of having astronomical maximum liability

exposure. He's allowed them to define the facts of this spill. You can

never be allowed to do that as a CEO and be on a level playing field,

being equals there at the table when you allow one side of the table,

in this case BP, in dealing with this spill to define the facts.

O'REILLY: All right. But 49 percent, according to a poll

today, we'll have later, 49 percent of Americans still want BP to run

the show. And only 45 percent want the government to run the show. So

most Americans aren't down with the Obama administration calling the

shots.

Now, President Obama basically is, as Charles Krauthammer pointed

out, a dreamer. I mean, he wants, I think, good for the nation as far

as energy is concerned. You made a very valid point. We can't throw the

oil people under the bus. If we do that, our economy is going to tank

totally. And if we spend billions of dollars on pie in the sky stuff

that doesn't work, we're going to go bankrupt. So what is your solution

here, governor? What would you do tonight? Tell the nation tonight what

you would have said your main point in that speech. Go.

PALIN: Stopping the gusher. That's the No. 1 priority of the nation.

O'REILLY: But nobody knows how to do it.

PALIN: We need to make sure that all technology is being thrown at this problem.

O'REILLY: Nobody knows how to do it.

PALIN: Well, we haven't had the assurance that president — we

haven't had the assurance by the president that that has been his top

priority. Instead, what his top priority is, Bill, is cap and tax. It

is using this crisis, not letting it go to waste, but to use this

crisis to increase the cost of energy.

O'REILLY: All right, if that happens, there will be an outcry.

PALIN: And that is going to stall any kind of economic recovery that we have.

O'REILLY: Are you telling me that you don't think the president's top priority is stopping that leak? Is that what you are telling me?

PALIN: What I'm telling you is that is not what I am hearing

and what the American public is hearing from the top official in our

government. And that's why those poll numbers show that, no, the

public, we don't know where to turn. If we can't trust BP to be able to

fix this leak, we know we can't trust government because they've had

eight weeks of overseeing, of regulating and kind of coaching this

whole process, this whole issue of stopping the leak. And they haven't

succeeded in doing it.

O'REILLY: OK.

PALIN: So the people are very, very frustrated.

O'REILLY: And that's right.

PALIN: We have to know — we have to know that President Obama's No. 1 priority is to stop the leak.

O'REILLY: But I'm assuming that it is. And I am assuming that

it is. But, look, the reason I'm pleased to have you on the program

tonight is that there is not a governor in the United States who has

more experience than you do dealing with the oil companies. You've

already said you can't believe them, that their word doesn't mean much

when you are debating issues as far as the oil company's interest and

the interest of the people. You can't believe them. OK. Now, the oil

company BP says we don't know how to stop the leak. We're going to try

X. We're going to dig another well. We're going to do this. We don't

know. We don't know. Obama obviously doesn't know how to stop the leak.

Do you know how to stop it?

PALIN: Well, then what the federal government should have

done was accept the assistance of foreign countries, of entrepreneurial

Americans who have had solutions…

O'REILLY: Who?

PALIN: …that they wanted presented.

O'REILLY: Who?

PALIN: They can't even get a phone call returned, Bill. The

Dutch. They are known in the Norwegian. They are known for — for dikes

and for cleaning up water and for dealing with spills. They offered to

help and, yet, no, they too, with a proverbial can't even get a phone

call back. That is what the Norwegians are telling us, and the Dutch

are telling us. And then the entrepreneurial Americans, the company in

Maine that has the boom and the absorbents, those companies that are

waiting for the Obama administration eight weeks later for the

regulators to come in and say, OK, we'll purchase from you now. We'll

do all that we can. That's where some of the frustration is.

Now, we saw the same thing though with Katrina, didn't we? So, I'm

not going to point fingers and make this a partisan issue at all, point

fingers at different administrations. But it is that inherent problem

that we have with government, not necessarily being prepared, because

our priorities in government are wrong. National security, safety of

the people, needs to be the top priority. That's where we need to be

funding instead of funding these other things on the periphery that

really just get in the way of the private sector's progress, their

ability to produce and to thrive and to prosper, Instead, our

priorities in the national government have been screwed up.

Now, as governor of Alaska, what I did in dealing with the oil

companies, and I'll bet you, 75 percent of my time was being taken up

by energy issues here in this state. I had to set up our Petroleum

Systems Integrity Office so that we could be there on the front lines

making sure what the oil companies were telling us was legit, when they

were dealing with their corroded pipes that we found out and other lax

maintenance issues.

O'REILLY: Good point.

PALIN: It took us putting that as the highest priority to

protect our resources, to protect our environment, including not just

the physical environment but the human environment here.

O'REILLY: All right. Well, that's a good point. There wasn't

anybody from the management service or whatever — Mineral Management

Service out on the pipeline checking it out. That's for sure.

Hey, Governor, always a pleasure. Thanks for coming on.

PALIN: Now, but Bill…

O'REILLY: Go ahead, real quick.

PALIN: OK. We can't — we can't afford though to — we can't

afford to demonize these energy producers to such an extent though that

they go under. We do need to work with them though, but we need to

verify everything it is and hold them accountable for all that they

have done in this situation.

O'REILLY: All right, governor. Thanks again.