Interviews

John Stossel on Liberal Hypocrisy

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," July 27, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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LAURA INGRAHAM, GUEST HOST: In the "Stossel Matters" segment tonight: Sen. John Kerry is in the crosshairs over a $7 million family yacht that was recently purchased and currently docked in Rhode Island, instead of his home state of Massachusetts. Rhode Island does not tax leisure vessels, but Massachusetts, the senator would be on the hook for a one-time payment of a half a million bucks plus 70 grand a year. Kerry was confronted about the situation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator, are you going to pay those taxes back on the boat?

SEN. JOHN KERRY, D-MASS.: Wait a minute, now, let's get this very straight. I said consistently we will pay our taxes. We've always paid our taxes. It's not an issue, period.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator, did you berth the boat in Massachusetts since you bought it?

KERRY: I beg your pardon?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You berth the boat in Massachusetts?

KERRY: That depends on who owns it, Joe. Can I get out of here, please?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

INGRAHAM: That's one of my all-time favorite comments. "Can I get out of here, please?" After tremendous pressure from the media, Kerry's office said today that he would pay up, and that he intended to pay all the taxes all along.

Joining us now from New York, Fox Business anchor, John Stossel. All right, John, is this just a great example for all of us fiscal conservatives out there, the liberal "Do I as I say, not as I do?" I mean, we want you to pay all those taxes but, hey, we're going to figure out a way to dock our boat somewhere else.

JOHN STOSSEL, FOX NEWS BUSINESS ANCHOR: It is delicious. And, yes, it's certainly a good example of that. I mean, we can't prove that he didn't dock the boat in Rhode Island because he -- just because he bought it there. Maybe he wasn't trying to dodge taxes. But I'm pretty suspicious. It's a lot of money. And he clearly is a hypocrite in that he says we shouldn't outsource. He campaigned against President Bush, saying this outsourcing is terrible; I would stop that. And he even voted for a "Buy American" provision in Obama's stimulus bill. But this boat he had built in New Zealand.

INGRAHAM: Well, John, first of all, the boat is named Isabella, right? It should have been named Teresa. I mean, she probably paid for it. That's all I'm saying. It would have been nice. Or Isabel, excuse me. But it's a beautiful boat. We hope -- we hope they have fun. And that's great. But I think what it does is it adds to the public cynicism about politicians, left, right and center.

And let's move on to Charlie Rangel, OK? Because this guy was chairman of the tax-writing committee. He's -- he has now been charged with these ethics -- ethics violations. Another investigation seems to be continuing. But they're going to cut a deal, and Democrats, John, are going to pat themselves on the back and say, "See, we can punish one of our own, too."

STOSSEL: Maybe, we'll see what happens. But if you're a rich liberal, it's a little hard to be consistent. If you look at the environmental record of some people like Al Gore telling us, cut our -- cut your carbon footprint but he owns two huge homes. He just built a -- or bought a $7 million home in Los Angeles, in addition to his giant mansion in Tennessee, which uses 10 times the electricity that his neighbors use.

INGRAHAM: And what about when you think about all the green energy pushes that are going on out there and the great push for wind power? One of my favorite stories, and I know you've tackled this before.

STOSSEL: The Kennedy compound.

INGRAHAM: Yes, the Kennedy compound. Those big, unsightly wind turbines, you know, put them in someone else's backyard. We need that Hyannis Port view to be, you know, uninterrupted and completely clear. Again…

STOSSEL: Wind power. It's great. It's clean, oh, but not near us. And by the way, it would have been this big on the horizon near their home. But they said, no, Nantucket Sound, that's special. That has to be protected.

INGRAHAM: Hey, John, do you think all of these cases from -- from Charlie Rangel to John Kerry and the yacht. I mean, that obviously is much different -- different issues, but the issue of public accountability and the public trust, now with the new media -- Fox News, talk radio, blogs -- it's hard to escape the public's wrath and judgment on an issue like this, is it not? I mean, eventually it will catch up with you. Eventually, there will be a sound bite that someone will be able to find or a record that someone else will be able to unearth. And then you're going to have to explain yourself. Twenty-five years ago that might not have been the case.

STOSSEL: I think you're right, and I hope this just grows. It's a new world. Sen. Kerry, a big environmentalist himself, he went to the Copenhagen environmental conference. He took a military jet all by himself. Now this stuff comes out.

INGRAHAM: John, we appreciate it, as always. Thanks so much.

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