This is a partial transcript from "HANNITY & COLMES", July 7, 2004, that has been edited for clarity.
SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: Jack Ryan recently had to drop his bid for the U.S. Senate seat in Illinois after sex allegations contained in divorce documents were released by a California judge.
The allegations come from Ryan's ex-wife, actress Jeri Ryan, and include the accusation that Jack Ryan took his wife to clubs and pressured her to have sex with him while others would watch.
About one hour ago, I had the opportunity to speak with Mr. Ryan.
HANNITY: And Jack Ryan now joins us. Welcome to the program. Thanks for being with us.
JACK RYAN (R), FORMER ILLINOIS SENATE CANDIDATE: Thanks for having me.
HANNITY: All right. Let's get some things on the table. You didn't want these divorce and custody records unsealed.
RYAN: Right. Neither me nor my wife wanted them unsealed.
HANNITY: Your ex-wife didn't want them unsealed?
HANNITY: You were the two principles involved. How did they get unsealed?
RYAN: Well, the paper in Chicago went to the court in Los Angeles and sued us to have our documents released to the public. And my ex-wife and I -- Jeri Lynn -- said, no, that's private information between a man and wife. Let's keep that sealed.
HANNITY: Because this to me is a privacy issue, I think if the principles involved -- and we're talking about a child that could have repercussions from this is involved -- but if all of the principles involved in this family matter don't want it unsealed, how does it get unsealed? How does it become the business of the "Chicago Tribune" or any other newspaper?
RYAN: Well, they say there's a public's right to know. But just think about that for one second. Can they go after anybody's divorce files or custody files now and say, "We want them unsealed because we have a right to know"?
Who runs for public office anymore if that's the standard? What person is divorced or has a custody issue now decides to run for office?
HANNITY: You know.
RYAN: I think it's bad for America.
HANNITY: Has there ever been another case you know of where this has happened?
RYAN: No, it's the first time I've ever heard of this happening.
HANNITY: But if they should do this to you, shouldn't they do it to John Kerry? Shouldn't they do it to every candidate running for office that's had a divorce?
RYAN: Well, I don't think they should do it to John Kerry. I'd say no to that because.
HANNITY: You don't want it to anybody?
RYAN: No. No one should go through what we went through. And we want good people running for office, and this dissuades people from ever saying, "I'll volunteer to run for public office."
HANNITY: All right. Your wife claims -- and this is your wife we're talking about here -- that you took her to these clubs and that you had urged her to have sex in public. You, at the time, denied it.
Do you still stand by that today, that denial?
RYAN: Well, what I said four years ago. And today, both she and I are not reopening discussions we put behind us a long time ago. We're great co-parents. It took a long time to rebuild that relationship.
HANNITY: No, I understand.
RYAN: That's more important than the U.S. Senate race.
HANNITY: For the record, you stand by what you said in those legal papers four years ago? You stand by that?
RYAN: Of course I do.
HANNITY: OK. So, you stand by your comment?
RYAN: But we're not reopening those discussions today.
HANNITY: Yes. Here's -- I guess the question here now becomes why did you get out of the race? If you're standing by your position then, if you think you have a right to privacy, that the newspaper has no right to get into this, that the press, it's none of their business. Your ex-wife doesn't want this public; you don't want this public.
Why did you get out? Why don't you go champion the cause now of privacy for all individuals?
RYAN: Because I think the media was so obsessed with this issue they'd never let us talk about the issues that really face Americans, like how to fix the Great Society programs, which have failed now for 35 years. That was one of the major themes of the campaign.
And the second thing is we didn't keep the support of some of the leaders in the Illinois Republican Party.
HANNITY: So, is that the main cause? Because I think you're in a position now where you could go out -- look, you became a multimillionaire for Goldman Sachs. You spent, what, three years working in the inner cities of Chicago, helping children get to school, get a good education, to make their lives better, right?
RYAN: I was teaching high school on the South side of Chicago.
HANNITY: This is your -- this is your passion.
RYAN: Right, right.
HANNITY: You wanted -- you want to run for office. This never should have happened. But you dropped out and you quit. Don't you give them a victory?
RYAN: I don't think so. Because the issues I cared about, like how do we fix those problems on the South side of Chicago, we never would have had a chance to talk about it.
HANNITY: Isn't this going to happen again and again, because you got out of the race and you let the pressure get in the way?
If you believe privacy rights should not be invaded in a personal matter such as divorce, why are you out of this race? Why don't you bring that case to the Illinois people and say, "This shouldn't happen to you, your families, or anybody else," and stand by it?
RYAN: And that's why I'm here today. Because the mission of the campaign had been how do we help those who were supposed to be helped by the Great Society programs who have now been left behind for 30, 35 years.
Now, I think our mission is to say: We've got to stop this. We will never have good people running for office ever again if this is a new standard for what.
HANNITY: But they won't have to, because you led the way to get out. Will you consider getting back in this race?
RYAN: I can't imagine. Nothing has changed since my decision two weeks ago in terms of the media's obsession with this issue, nor with the...
HANNITY: But wait. If you media asks you a question, why don't you say, "I'm not answering that. I'll talk about taxes. I'll talk about Iraq. I'll talk about Afghanistan. I'll talk about terrorism. No, no, no." And then say, "I'm not going to answer those." Why don't you just stay away from those questions?
RYAN: Because I don't think the media will let go. I think they'll keep focusing on these issues: Where did you go with your spouse?
HANNITY: And you say, "No thank you. Next question. No more questions, thank you. We'll see you tomorrow." And go take your case to the people of Illinois.
RYAN: Well, I just don't see the media changing from the point of view from the last two weeks. So, if that were to happen, maybe it.
HANNITY: You're going to let the media dictate what you do with your life?
RYAN: Well, it's very helpful to have the media not taking away from the message I'm trying to convey to people, as well as the Illinois GOP leadership.
HANNITY: I don't know. You know, I find this amazing, because I think conservatives and liberals would unite in the one sense that if you don't want your divorce records released and your ex-wife doesn't -- it's not a public's right to know now.
Now, look, I will say this. If what she alleged is true, I think you're strange. But I don't think we should have found out about it.
RYAN: Well, I agree. I agree with both those points, and no, we shouldn't have found out about it. And if it were true -- which I hope you won't believe -- but it seems to me this is a complete invasion of people's privacy.
HANNITY: All right. Here's the question: Will you consider getting back in this race?
RYAN: Nothing has changed since my decision two weeks ago.
HANNITY: Answer my question: Will you consider getting back in this race?
HANNITY: Under no circumstances?
RYAN: Unless 25,000 people show up in front of my house and say, "We want Jack."
HANNITY: If 25,000 people show up in front of your house, you will consider it?
RYAN: Yes. I'll consider it. How's that?
HANNITY: How about 10,000?
RYAN: Five thousand.
HANNITY: Five thousand people.
RYAN: Straight from the Bible, you know, it's 50 people, it's 10 people, five people.
HANNITY: If 5,000 people show up in front of your house, you will consider it?
RYAN: Five thousand people in my house?
HANNITY: Show up in front of your house and say, "Run, Jack, run"?
RYAN: Is that you orchestrating this?
HANNITY: No, I'm asking.
HANNITY: All right. I think it's a privacy issue. And we appreciate you being with us. And I think it's a bad precedent. But anyway, thanks for being with us.
RYAN: Appreciate it.
HANNITY: Appreciate it.
Copy: Content and Programming Copyright 2004 Fox News Network, L.L.C. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Transcription Copyright 2004 eMediaMillWorks, Inc. (f/k/a Federal Document Clearing House, Inc.), which takes sole responsibility for the accuracy of the transcription. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. No license is granted to the user of this material except for the user's personal or internal use and, in such case, only one copy may be printed, nor shall user use any material for commercial purposes or in any fashion that may infringe upon Fox News Network, L.L.C. and eMediaMillWorks, Inc.'s copyrights or other proprietary rights or interests in the material. This is not a legal transcript for purposes of litigation.