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Is Donald Trump Good or Bad for the GOP?

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," April 15, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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LAURA INGRAHAM, GUEST HOST: In the "Lou's the Boss" segment tonight: As most of you know, Donald Trump is investigating the birther question, whether President Obama was born in the United States or not. For the record, "The Factor" has investigated and "The Factor" believes Mr. Obama was born in Hawaii. Yesterday, President Obama was asked about the matter:

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS ANCHOR: All of us have been struck by Donald Trump rising to the top of the Republican field by feeding fantasies about your background.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Yes.

STEPHANOPOULOS: What do you make of that?

OBAMA: I think that over the last two and a half years there has been an effort to go at me in a way that is politically expedient in the short-term for Republicans but creates, I think, a problem for them when they want to actually run in the general election where most people feel pretty confident the president was born where he says he was, in Hawaii. He doesn't have horns.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

INGRAHAM: Now some folks are starting to wonder if Donald Trump would be good or bad for the GOP, especially after hearing him say stuff like this back in 2008 about then President-elect Obama.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, REAL ESTATE MOGUL: I think he has a chance to go down as a great president. Now, if he is not, if he is not a great president, this country is in serious trouble.

I think he's going to lead through consensus. It's not going to be just a bull run like Bush did. He just did whatever the hell he wanted. He would go into a country, attack Iraq, which had nothing to do with the World Trade Center, and just do it because he wanted to do it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Asked if he ever thought he would see an African- American president in his lifetime, Trump answered.

TRUMP: They always said 100 years before a black man or woman could have been elected president, and the 100 years turned out of to be like one year. He has done an amazing job.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

INGRAHAM: Joining us now from New York to analyze, Fox Business legend Lou Dobbs. You can catch his show weekdays at 7:00 on FBN. Now, Lou, first of all, when we call you a legend…

LOU DOBBS, FOX BUSINESS ANCHOR: I love that.

INGRAHAM: This is your life, Lou Dobbs. How are you?

DOBBS: Outstanding, Laura. Great to see you.

INGRAHAM: Great to see you. So what's going on? Is Trump somehow a liability for the Republicans? As far as I can tell, he's doing pretty well in these polls.

DOBBS: He's doing great in these polls, as you suggest, Laura. And furthermore, I think he's great for the Republican Party. There are a bunch of folks who want to be so overwhelmingly earnest about all of this. He is bringing life. He's bringing vitality to a lineup of folks who ultimately want to run for that nomination in the Republican Party. I see that as nothing but good and positive.

INGRAHAM: Now, doesn't Trump kind of, even though he is obviously incredibly wealthy…

DOBBS: Right.

INGRAHAM: …you know, has a big business empire, media empire now, he comes across as kind of like a normal guy in conversation, right? He doesn't -- he is like "Obama is a disaster" when he was on my radio show. I mean, I'm howling laughing because it's kind of the way I talk with my friends, but, you know, and so I think he is getting known as much as for that in his views on China. You and I have talked about China so much over the years.

DOBBS: Right.

INGRAHAM: He is talking about issues that no one else is talking about.

DOBBS: And should be talking about. This -- Donald Trump, whatever else one thinks of him, whether or not one supports him or doesn't for the Republican nomination, here is a guy saying straight up that somebody in this administration, preferably the president, should be talking directly to the Saudis, saying, you know, we have had a belly-full of OPEC raising gas prices and oil prices, and it's just not going to work anymore and you're going to have to deal with that. This is the way a president should be thinking, if not speaking. You can be as colorful as you want if you're president or not, but the effective policy has to be powerful. Right now, this president talk -- talked about an energy policy five weeks ago and all we've seen is gasoline rise in price, crude oil rise in price and the American working man and woman in this is simply carrying OPEC on their back.

INGRAHAM: And Lou, I think when he talks about his own business dealings with China and he says, look, you know, I talk to these people; they are laughing that they are eating us for lunch.

DOBBS: Sure.

INGRAHAM: I mean, he speaks with some credibility on that.

DOBBS: Without question. And by the way, he is right, and -- but no one should be blaming China, for crying out loud. They should be blaming the United States. Timothy Geithner goes over to Beijing and whines about the Chinese currency being pegged to the dollar. Well, what are you going to do about it, Mr. Secretary? What is the president going to do about it? We can run policy from this side. You don't have to turn to Beijing.

INGRAHAM: Yes well, they're -- they are doing what's good for China.

DOBBS: Absolutely.

INGRAHAM: News flash. We should do the same.

DOBBS: What a great idea.

INGRAHAM: Lou, it's great – yes -- it's great to see you.

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