This partial transcript of The Beltway Boys, August 25, 2001 was provided by the Federal Document Clearing House. Click here to order the complete transcript.
MORT KONDRACKE, HOST: I'm Mort Kondracke.
FRED BARNES, HOST: And I'm Fred Barnes, and we're The Beltway Boys.
Mort, the hot story is obviously Gary Condit finally speaking out.
Now, I know you watched the interview with Connie Chung on ABC. I know you scoured the transcript. But I want you to watch a chunk of that interview and see if Gary Condit doesn't remind you of someone else. Just watch this. Watch it closely.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, PRIMETIME, ABC)
CONNIE CHUNG, ABC NEWS: Congressman Condit, do you know what happened to Chandra Levy?
REP. GARY CONDIT (D), CALIFORNIA: No, I do not.
CHUNG: Did you have anything to do with her disappearance?
CONDIT: No, I didn't. We had a close relationship. I liked her very much.
CHUNG: May I ask you, was it a sexual relationship?
CONDIT: Well, Connie, I've been married for 34 years, and I've not been a perfect man, and I've made my share of mistakes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KONDRACKE: Well, it reminded me of Richard Nixon.
KONDRACKE: Richard Nixon saying that John Stennis should review the Watergate tapes? Is that what you had in mind?
BARNES: No, I saw that appearance on TV too. But no, I think another name come -- came to my mind, Bill Clinton.
KONDRACKE: Bill Clinton, yes.
BARNES: ... I mean, look, it was the same, this vague stuff about "I've made mistakes," and then lack of specificity on everything else. And then these dubious denials of other affairs and so on. I mean, it was, it was vintage Clinton. Not as good as Clinton did it, but vintage Clinton.
But I think the whole effect of the Gary Condit interview was to subtract from our information, not add to it. And it certainly didn't impress the closest thing to a defender in Congress that Gary Condit has had, and that's House Democratic leader Richard Gephardt, who said he found it disturbing, what Gary Condit had said.
KONDRACKE: Yes, I thought it was junior varsity Bill Clinton. I happen to agree with you. But Gephardt also said, in an interview with The St. Louis Post Dispatch, "I didn't hear candor, I didn't hear an apology. I need to talk to my colleagues. We're going to have to deal with the, with the issues." Now, what he's talking about is maybe kicking Condit off the, the House Intelligence Committee...
BARNES: You mean, not out of the caucus altogether?
KONDRACKE: Well, not, not yet. It's really serious. Also, he -- I think he got caught in a flat lie when he said that he didn't have a relationship with, with the stewardess, Anne Marie Smith, who has, you know, call -- made call after call, over a month-long period, to, to Gary Condit's favorite love line cell phone. I think he's, I think he's cooked.
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