Michael Dukakis on Bill Clinton's DNC Speech

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," August 27, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: We welcome Governor Michael Dukakis. Sir, thank you so much for being here.

When you sit here and see these speeches, when you were the nominee at one time, and you stood on that stage, what does that do for you? What does it do to you?

MICHAEL DUKAKIS, FORMER MASSACHUSETTS GOVERNOR: Well, I thought the Clinton speech was a great speech, and it was considerably better than the one he made when he nominated me in Atlanta. You know, when — when Bill Clinton announced for president in the fall of 1991, he went on Johnny Carson, and Carson said, "Why are you running for president?"

Video: Watch Sean and Alan's interview with Michael Dukakis

And he said, "Because I want to finish my speech for Dukakis."

COLMES: And you apologized the other day.


COLMES: On my radio show, as well. You said you were sorry...


COLMES: ... for not winning because, had you won, this country would have been — would be in a very different place right now.

DUKAKIS: I was more specific than that. I said if I'd beaten the old man, we'd never heard of the kid and we wouldn't be in this mess.

COLMES: So you really...

DUKAKIS: I take this responsibility.

COLMES: What would you have done differently so that we wouldn't have been in this mess?

DUKAKIS: You mean compared to what we've had? This is the worst president I've ever lived under. I mean, these last seven and a half years have been some of the worst seven and a half years of my life.

COLMES: What would a Dukakis presidency have done?

DUKAKIS: You'd have an economic game plan. I mean, we don't have an economic game plan. Deregulate, tax cuts for the wealthy, crumbs for the rest of us. I mean, that's — that's the Republican philosophy, which unfortunately, John McCain subscribes to.

COLMES: As you know, you know, you've got to make the case to the American people. Barack Obama has to make the case himself. He can't just depend on wonderful surrogates like Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton.


COLMES: What does Barack Obama have to do to make that sale to the people who have yet to come over to him?

DUKAKIS: Well, let me say first — let me respond to you, Sean. This experience tag, this guy has been in elective office for 12 years, longer than George Bush, longer than Jimmy Carter, longer than Hillary Clinton, longer than John Edwards. The same number of years in elective office as George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

HANNITY: But let me ask you...

DUKAKIS: Wait a second.

HANNITY: Yes, sir.

DUKAKIS: He's had experience at both the state and federal level, which I think makes you a much better president. He was an extremely effective state Senator, and Illinois is not exactly the minor leagues.

HANNITY: Governor...

DUKAKIS: He's been a very good United States Senator.

HANNITY: ... if I ask you to give specifics — forget about the 12 years. Give me specific accomplishments besides saying that Iran is a tiny country, not a serious threat, besides saying he'd be willing to invade Pakistan, an ally, and create the way for Iranians.

DUKAKIS: He didn't say that.

HANNITY: Yes, he did, actually.

DUKAKIS: No, he said he would do what we have begun to do under the Bush administration, which is to go after some of these folks in northern Pakistan.

HANNITY: You tell the audience — look in the camera. You tell them, what are his major specific accomplishments? Go right ahead.

DUKAKIS: He was — he was a terrific state legislator.

HANNITY: What did he — specifics. Those are generalities. Specifics.

DUKAKIS: A whole range of things.

HANNITY: Like? Like?

DUKAKIS: Bringing people together. Dealing with the death penalty issue was a very...

HANNITY: That makes him president...


HANNITY: ... because he dealt with the death penalty issue?

DUKAKIS: No, no. But because he was known as a great...

HANNITY: Community organizer.

DUKAKIS: No, a great leader in the Illinois legislature, the Illinois state government.

HANNITY: But you can't give me a specific. Just tell our audience specifically what has he done?

DUKAKIS: Well, I can go through his entire Illinois resume.

HANNITY: I'm ready.

COLMES: He did health care. You go down the list of things he did.

HANNITY: Let Governor Dukakis do it.

DUKAKIS: Health care, law enforcement, social services, integrity, very, very important...

HANNITY: Integrity.

DUKAKIS: Very important.

COLMES: Ethics.

HANNITY: Does John McCain have integrity?

DUKAKIS: Well, he had integrity.

HANNITY: He's lost integrity?

DUKAKIS: Unfortunately, he's lost his integrity, and it's one of the saddest things I've ever seen.

Here's a guy that was trashed by George Bush and that guy that you just had here in the year 2000. It was despicable,.

HANNITY: Let me ask you this question.

DUKAKIS: Let me finish.

HANNITY: Go ahead.

DUKAKIS: And now he's hired another Karl Rove acolyte to run his campaign. It's really sad to see a guy like McCain...

HANNITY: It's very interesting, because if that is your standard of integrity, if we look issue by issue, starting with Iraq: meeting with rogue dictators. Iran is now a grave threat. It was a tiny country, not a serious threat.

On getting out of Iraq in 16 months, on every major issue, now he's even open to drilling, perhaps — let me finish. Barack Obama has changed his position. Based on your standard, is he lacking integrity?

DUKAKIS: As a matter of fact, Barack Obama almost single-handedly, in case you've missed it...

HANNITY: I don't miss a thing.

DUKAKIS: ... has resolved the issue of troop withdrawal in Iraq. Have you noticed that?

HANNITY: That's because we're winning. The surge worked.

DUKAKIS: No. He said 16 months. Maliki said 16 months. Now the Bush administration is saying, well, not 16, but 20. The only guy...

HANNITY: With victory.

DUKAKIS: The only guy that isn't there is McCain. He wants to stick around for 25...

HANNITY: You want to be back out there. I can see. You can't give this up.

COLMES: This time he'd win.

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