Interviews

Evaluating President Trump's Supreme Court appointment

Charles Krauthammer weighs in on the nominee on 'The O'Reilly Factor'

 

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," January 31, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
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O'REILLY: Continuing now with our lead story, 49-year-old Neil Gorsuch is the nominee for the Supreme Court. President Trump gave his reasons a few moments ago. And then, the Judge himself went up and suitably thanked everybody for the great honor.

Let's bring in Charles Krauthammer, who is in Washington watching the proceedings. So, let's talk politics here. It is probably true that the stalwart Democrats like Senator Schumer and Congresswoman Pelosi won't directly smear Judge Gorsuch because that would be political suicide. Instead, they will farm it out to their vicious hit groups, George Soros funded many of them. To really try to damage the man in the eyes of the public. And that would give the Democratic Party then cover for not voting for him. However, if they do that, I think that it is going to go back to the Democrats big time and hurt that party in measurably. What say you?

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: I don't think so. Because unless you can find personal peccadilloes in this man's life that you exploit in your smear campaign and as you said, that doesn't look very likely given his history. The way that you smear a candidate for the Supreme Court is not by saying that he is, you know, a secret wife abuser but you do it by taking the outcome of his rulings and pretending that that was willed by the judge.

For example, you take Hobby Lobby. You take the case of The Little Sisters of the Poor where these are people who are on religious grounds, do not want to subsidize or even to give contraceptives as part of their health care plans. So, what you do is you pretend, and your 32nd ads, you say this is a man who is a theocrat, this a man who wants to see people denied contraception, this is a man who wants to see religious extremists be able to impose their views on their employees who are in no position to resist because they need a job.

So, what you do is you take the outcome and then you impute the outcome to what the judge wants to do. The amazing thing is that in his own statement, Judge Gorsuch said a really wise and interesting thing. He said any judge who likes the outcome of all of his cases is a bad judge.

O'REILLY: Right.

KRAUTHAMMER: In other words, you are taken to your outcome, sometimes, where you don't particularly want to go. Where, if you were a legislator, you would go the other way. But you are not a legislator. You are a judge. You are an interpreter of law and you say principle compels me to have this outcome.

O'REILLY: Yes. Because the constitution says this and this falls under protection of the constitution. However --

KRAUTHAMMER: Right. If you could be a believer of the opposite policy but --

O'REILLY: Yes. You could say politically, my job is to uphold the constitution. Okay. But here's the thing. In order for that strategy to prevail, it would have to be restrained, which we don't see in America anymore in politics. There is no restraint. So, I expect, right away, for the bomb throwers to come out with he's a misogynist, he doesn't like gay people, he doesn't do this, real personal stuff. And they will comb and try to find any kind of -- so in order for this campaign to besmirch them to work, they got to get through to the folks, they can't do theoretical, they got to go, he's bad, he's evil. And I expect that happen to some extent.

KRAUTHAMMER: It always happens. And it began with work. Within one hour of the Bork nomination, Ted Kennedy is on the floor of the Senate, and he says that Robert Bork's America is in America where women have to have backroom abortions.

O'REILLY: Right.

KRAUTHAMMER: Where blacks aren't allowed at the lounge counter, et cetera. In other words, interpreting some of the decisions he made by the outcome and totally distorting what his views really are. But that began with Kennedy. It created a tradition that goes until today and today, very clever groups on the left will use either words from his decisions, even if it is in a footnote or outcomes to say, as you say, he is a misogynist, he is insensitive to civil rights, he is not up with the times. And he will relegate women to backroom abortions.

O'REILLY: Okay. But if the Democratic Party Party does that in their hearings, it is going to fly back at them like crazy because that party is already really in trouble. They are really in trouble, the Democrats. That is my "Talking Points" tonight.

KRAUTHAMMER: I don't think it flies back on them at all.

O'REILLY: You think they got away with clean with that?

KRAUTHAMMER: They've done this since Bork. It didn't hurt them after Bork.

O'REILLY: It didn't hurt Donald Trump as president. It didn't hurt Donald Trump as president. Donald Trump as president.

KRAUTHAMMER: Yes. But the Republicans lost the presidency for eight years twice. It isn't as if it is a slam dunk. The country is divided on social issues. They are going to put their finger on the hot button, social issues, and try to show how this judge and this kind of reasoning leads you to a place that will offend half the country.

O'REILLY: I got it. All right.

KRAUTHAMMER: That's how it works.

O'REILLY: Make a prediction. Is he on the Supreme Court in three months?

KRAUTHAMMER: Absolutely. Slam dunk.

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