Transcript: O'Reilly Interviews Rumsfeld, Part Two

The following is the second and final part of Bill O'Reilly's interview with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld that aired on the December 3, 2004 edition of "The O'Reilly Factor."

BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the "Factor Follow-Up" segment tonight, we continue our chat with Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Just today, another Bush cabinet member resigned, Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson (search), so we wanted to know how long Donald Rumsfeld has and also ask him about the Boy Scout controversy.

Roll the tape...


O'REILLY: The ACLU is attacking the Boy Scouts.

DONALD RUMSFELD: Again, and again, and again.

BILL O'REILLY: And again. We all know this is a don't ask, don't tell policy.

DONALD RUMSFELD: And they do it to raise money.

BILL O'REILLY: I, well ...

DONALD RUMSFELD: I shouldn't say that, I don't know that,

BILL O'REILLY: Are you a supporter of the don't ask, don't tell policy, number one.

DONALD RUMSFELD: That's the policy of the department.

BILL O'REILLY: Do you support it as a secretary of defense?

DONALD RUMSFELD: Why certainly.


DONALD RUMSFELD: I support all the policies of this department, I have to.

BILL O'REILLY: Do you think it's a fair policy?


BILL O'REILLY: All right, so, so don't ask, don't tell, policy of this administration, you're okay with it. Because that's the genesis of all these attacks. With the ACLU filing a lawsuits against the D.O.D., has succeeded now in having the D.O.D. not sponsor Boy Scout troops all over the world. Now you know, I got thousands of letters from military people going, we want our kids in the Boy Scouts, in the base in Okinawa, and everywhere else.


BILL O'REILLY: What are you going to do about it.

DONALD RUMSFELD: Okay, here's the situation. I was a cub scout, a boy scout, an eagle scout, a distinguished eagle scout, and I'm for the Scouts. Let there be no doubt. Uh, the Department of Defense has had a long-standing excellent relationship with the Boy Scouts. It has been mutually beneficial. It has helped the Department of Defense and the soldiers and sailors.


DONALD RUMSFELD: And it helps the Boy Scouts. And that's a good thing. Um, apparently what happened was a macro lawsuit by the ACLU and at some moment the Department of Justice and the, some lawyers in the Department of Defense settled a sliver of that suit. When we found out about it, uh, we heard that Senator Frist was sponsoring some concurrent resolutions and he supported that. Uh, and he now is working on some legislation which we are working with him on. The, the current situation is, we do not believe, and I, again, I am not a lawyer, but I am told by the lawyers, I do not believe that what took place in terms of that, sliver of the larger case that was settled will alter in any way, anything that the Boy Scouts and the Department of Defense have done together in the past.

BILL O'REILLY: So you'll still sponsor Scout troops.

DONALD RUMSFELD: The phraseology, I think, is ...

BILL O'REILLY: You might change the phraseology.

DONALD RUMSFELD: I, I think that there's a, a, a marginal difference, I'm told, by the lawyers, between cooperating, allowing the Jamborees to occur.


DONALD RUMSFELD: And all of these things, and a, a base commander officially becoming the sponsor of something.

BILL O'REILLY: All right, so, so you can dance around with ...

DONALD RUMSFELD: Exactly. But, but this is a good relationship, it ought to continue, and as long as I am here I'll do everything to see that it does.

BILL O'REILLY: Can't you institute a draft for the ACLU, just them?


BILL O'REILLY: Can't, can't you do that and just ...

DONALD RUMSFELD: I'm against the draft. That's one of these myths that went around during the campaign.

BILL O'REILLY: [OVERLAPPING VOICES] I know, I know, I just want to see if we could deploy them maybe to, some outpost somewhere, Saipan? Um, all right, what about your future, are you quitting, are you going to retire, are you leaving? Tell me the truth.

DONALD RUMSFELD: The, the truth is that the, this is an issue between the President and a cabinet officer. And it strikes me that it's up to the President to make any de, de, discussion,

BILL O'REILLY: You're not going to, you're not going to quit.

DONALD RUMSFELD: Um, the, the, I'm not going to discuss it. [LAUGHTER]

BILL O'REILLY: Your prerogative, you're an American and you don't want to discuss it, I can't force you. Mr. Secretary, I want to thank you very much for taking the time to talk with us today.

DONALD RUMSFELD: Thank you. I appreciate your coming in and it's good to visit with you.


O'REILLY: And in an interesting aside, President Bush asked Secretary Rumsfeld to stay just a few hours ago. We don't know how long that's going to be. The secretary has agreed to stay, and that's where things stand.

Also, the secretary would like you to know about the Pentagon Memorial Fund which will honor the victims at the Pentagon who died on 9/11, and we will have details on “The Factor” Web site, or you can go directly to, OK?