Alec Baldwin: My Life Is Nobody's Business

This is a partial transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," August 13, 2004 that has been edited for clarity.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: At one time, you were the primary target for right-wingers. You were like a poster boy of the arrogant, outspoken, liberal Hollywood star. And you paid a price for that, right?

ALEC BALDWIN, ACTOR: Well, first of all, you very graciously helped to rectify one of the misconceptions on your show when you aired that clarification about whether I had said I would leave the country if Bush were elected president. The time you want to leave the country and go on a nice European sojourn is when your man is in office and you feel that everything is right with the world, not when...

O'REILLY: Yeah, you didn't say it, but your ex-wife did. Unfortunately, it was attached to you. And we were happy to correct the record, but...

BALDWIN: But more importantly, what happens is kind of a profiling thing where a lot of people that I run into who, quite frankly, are fans of this type of program, what they think to themselves -- and they express this to me -- is even though you didn't say that, you seem like someone who would have said that.

O'REILLY: Who would... oh, I get that all the time.

BALDWIN: Then they get into that kind of...

O'REILLY: Anybody in the public eye gets slimed... anybody. I understand that you guys, you and your crew, don't like Bush, all right. You don't like his policies, you don't like his style.

BALDWIN: But try if you can...

O'REILLY: But whoa...

BALDWIN: You're posing as a teacher now without the credentials, by the way...

O'REILLY: No, I am a teacher.

BALDWIN: Are you...

O'REILLY: Yeah, I taught high school just like your dad.

BALDWIN: Fantastic. Then all the more reason that you're credentialed... that try to avoid that language of "you and your crowd."

O'REILLY: Well, you just said, you know... the people...

BALDWIN: The people that I work with who are not ordinarily Hollywood actors.

O'REILLY: That's what I mean, whatever you want to say.

BALDWIN: A lot of them are Fortune 500 CEOs who...

O'REILLY: Absolutely, across the board. And I understand why you don't like the guy.

BALDWIN: Because it is a divided country, I believe that.

O'REILLY: Correct. And I don't know if George W. Bush can unite the country. I just simply don't know. But I will tell you this...

BALDWIN: That Kerry could.

O'REILLY: ... that you feel...

BALDWIN: Do you think Kerry would be better at uniting the country than Bush?

O'REILLY: I'll answer that question in a minute. I'm going to give you the same luxury I gave Michael Moore. You can ask me questions, but I'm going to tell you this. The anger that you feel toward President Bush, people feel toward you.

And I'm trying to get that anger out. You're entitled to your opinion...

BALDWIN: But there's...

O'REILLY: They're entitled to their opinion.

BALDWIN: But there's a profound difference. And that is that public figures and public officials... I am not a public official. I am not on the government payroll. Where I spend my money, who I sleep with, if I have sex with animals is nobody's business. I'm a movie actor.

When someone has their finger on the public till and public policy, then you and I have the right to know everything we possibly can about them. That's what's happened is a lot of people on both sides, Republican and Democrat, conservative and liberal, have commingled -- that they've made the acumen that we need to examine political figures the same as we have with public figures. Who cares what my income tax returns are and whether I give money to...

O'REILLY: I don't think anybody cares.

BALDWIN: Exactly, I'm a movie actor. That's what I'm saying. We deal with those people differently.

O'REILLY: But the lack of respect that the Hollywood community shows the folks who disagree with them politically is harming the Hollywood community. Bottom line, that's it.

BALDWIN: I think that goes both ways.

O'REILLY: It does.

BALDWIN: I think you're right. I think it goes both ways.

O'REILLY: What about you do you want the folks to know about you, you know? I mean, I'm going to give you the floor now. You've been the most controversial actor in the past five years. What do you want the people to know about you?

BALDWIN: You know, I care about my country and I love my country. I mean, this Wounded Warrior project that we've worked on to try to put something, some small token to lift the spirits of these people when they come home is a small example of that of, you know -- when I look at Michael Moore (search) and I say to myself, in spite of him manipulating certain facts in the cinematic presentation of what he does, I believe that Moore does what he does because he loves his country. I believe he cares.

O'REILLY: He wants a different country, though.

BALDWIN: How would you say?

O'REILLY: He wants a socialist country.

BALDWIN: Socialist, how?

O'REILLY: He wants to redistribute wealth...

BALDWIN: How would he want to redistribute wealth in a way... I mean, again, I want to ask you to state your...

O'REILLY: He wants to take my stuff and your stuff.

BALDWIN: Your stuff and my stuff is being taken now.

O'REILLY: Yeah, he wants to take...


O'REILLY: Moore said on this program he would tax me federally at a 70 percent rate.

BALDWIN: Now, that I don't agree with.

O'REILLY: Of course, you don't. That's insane. But again, you're getting away from... I want to know what you want them to know about you.

BALDWIN: I want them to know the country is going to run itself in certain ways regardless of who the president of the United States is. The heart of the American military is not going to falter if John Kerry is the president of the United States. The U.S. military is a machine that's basically going to kick the ass of every other country around the world no matter what we do.

The president of the United States is a guy that decides who that machine is going to be turned against and why. He has a big influence on that, along with other leaders. He's someone who decides what priorities we're going to make for this country.

And I think that if you love your country, like I do, you're going to realize that it's time for change, and that the people we have in office right now, they don't have the best interests of the greatest number of Americans at heart.

O'REILLY: But that's a political statement. You won't tell me what you want the folks to know about you, Alec Baldwin.

BALDWIN: I think that that is telling them something about me.

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