Barbara Walters on Martha Stewart

This is a partial transcript from The O'Reilly Factor, November 6, 2003.

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BILL O’REILLY, HOST: In the "Personal Story" Segment tonight, 62-year-old Martha Stewart (search) set to stand trial on insider trading charges next January. She will appear with Barbara Walters on "20/20" Friday at 10:00 Eastern and Pacific.

Ms. Walters joins us now with an immediate correction, all right. She's going to correct me immediately. We didn't even start the interview, and I'm being corrected.

BARBARA WALTERS, "20/20": Oh, do you know how I hate to correct you?

O'REILLY: No, you love it. What did I do wrong here?

WALTERS: She is not being tried on insider trading.

O'REILLY: Well, that's what I have in my packet, insider trading and lying to…

WALTERS: Well, your packet is wrong. Sam Waksal was found guilty of insider trading.

O'REILLY: Right.

WALTERS: She is guilty of obstruction of justice...

O'REILLY: Being charged. She's not guilty.

WALTERS: Being charged.

O'REILLY: Ah, I can correct you!

WALTERS: She is...

O'REILLY: Yes, I got you. Obstruction of justice. What else?

WALTERS: Security fraud. What it boils down to is lying. Did she lie?

O'REILLY: Right. But it all stems from insider trading.

WALTERS: It stems from his insider trading. It is very important she has not -- everybody expected that it would be insider trading.

O'REILLY: You're absolutely right, and my packet was right. I made the mistake.

WALTERS: You made a mistake?

O'REILLY: Write that down. Write that down. The packet says charged not with insider trader but with making false statements.

WALTERS: Let's start all over again. OK. Here we go.

O'REILLY: No, no, no. I mean I'm not perfect, and I want people to see how, you know I'm very nervous in your presence.

Now what's the highlight of the "20/20" interview that you do with her? What's the highlight, the headline?

WALTERS: I am a human being. I want you to know about it. Don't judge me on whether you like me or dislike me. That should not be a part of this condemnation or trial.

O'REILLY: All right. Does she admit that she is a harsh woman and that she has a lot of enemies?


O'REILLY: All right. She reminds me a little of Rosie O'Donnell in that...

WALTERS: No, very different person. Although, you know, Rosie O'Donnell we can discuss another time, but the thing with Martha Stewart -- people love and admire her, but all we hear about is the detractors.

But she is a woman who started really from scratch, from a family that lives right nearby New York in Nutly, New Jersey, small town, made it all herself, and because she seems to be perfect and because she is not a woman who seeks sympathy...

For example, I said to her, do you think, as one reporter has said, that people are happy about this because little miss perfect has fallen on her face? So I think what she should have said, if she's trying to get sympathy, is I'm not perfect. She said but I haven't fallen on my face.

O'REILLY: OK. Let me give you my interpretation and then we're going to run a clip.

WALTERS: You know what I'm saying? So that's why. It's because she is composed. It's because she doesn't...

O'REILLY: Here's what I think. I think she's greedy, and that's why she got into trouble. I do think she tried to dump this stock, based upon...

WALTERS: For $40,000?

O'REILLY: Yes. I mean people who are greedy...

WALTERS: When she has billions?

O'REILLY: The money doesn't matter. It's let's get out, and that's the way it is.

But here's what I think happened. For years, Martha Stewart put forth -- as you put it -- a perfect image to women of America, and they loved her. They loved her, OK. And she came across as nice, and she came across as, look, I can borrow some broth from Martha, OK.

But then it came out that she wasn't so nice, and I think a lot of people, particularly women, feel a little bit betrayed. They feel fooled because she put up this image.

Now I want to run this clip, all right?


O'REILLY: And then we'll discuss whether you think she was honest to you. Let's run the clip.


WALTERS: What's been the most painful part of all of this?

MARTHA STEWART, MARTHA STEWART OMNIMEDIA: I think a delay in a good life, a hiatus in a really fine existence. At my age, there's no time for an unexpected, undesirable, unwanted hiatus. None, one that you can't really control. It's difficult.

WALTERS: Especially for a lady who's used to control?

STEWART: Well, especially for a lady who has lots more to do.

WALTERS: Martha, it is possible that you could be sent to prison for up to 30 years. Are you scared?

STEWART: Who wouldn't be scared? Of course, I'm scared. The last place I would ever want to go is to prison, and I don't think I will be going to prison, though.


O'REILLY: I don't think so either. I think she's going to get community service. I think she'll be convicted.

WALTERS: You do?


WALTERS: Why do you think she'll be convicted?

O'REILLY: I think she did is it! She did.

WALTERS: You don't know that she did it. That's what trials...

O'REILLY: I know she did.

WALTERS: That's what trials are -- oh, you know she did it?

O'REILLY: I do. Because of the phone call she made, her friends made, and they got this weasel Merrill Lynch guy who's going to turn on her. The prosecutor's going to bring her in. She's going to bang her right down.

WALTERS: Look, I am not her criminal attorney, so I'm not going to argue with you whether she's...

O'REILLY: Do you think she's innocent?

WALTERS: She says she's innocent. This is an interview in which she presents herself. I am not a judge.

O'REILLY: Right.

WALTERS: That's why I don't have a program like yours.

O'REILLY: Like mine. Right. But if she is convicted, I think she'll do community service. I don't think they'll send her up. That would be cruel. And I don't think the federal prosecutor wants to be -- I think they're sending a message, don't do this.

WALTERS: Yes, but one of the questions that I asked her is how do you feel about being lumped with people like the guys from Enron or WorldCom, you know? If you want to talk about scandals, they haven't even been touched yet.

O'REILLY: Yes, Lay got away with it because his lawyers were shrewder than...

See, she did this without her lawyers. She did it on her phone. She landed in Houston, picked up the telephone, made the phone call, passed the information on to her friend, and went through a low-level Merrill Lynch guy who the feds popped and is going to turn on her.

You know, Lay surrounded himself with lawyers, and every move they made was vetted by those people, and he's getting away with it. You're absolutely right. Lay was smarter than her.

WALTERS: Well, then one can say there was a kind of innocence about her to do that.

O'REILLY: You know, I don't think she's an innocent person. I think she's a greedy person, and I think that's the lesson here. I think that's the lesson here. This is a fabulously wealthy woman. So she loses 200,000 grand in a stock trade? So what?

WALTERS: See, I think there's a different lesson, and I think this is why she is doing this interview because, you know, it's dangerous for her to do this interview. You know the first thing that a criminal lawyer says to his client is don't talk.

O'REILLY: Right.

WALTERS: You never know because, if you say something, it can get you in trouble.

For example, she said publicly that she was innocent. The prosecutor has said, aha, that's a crime because you were trying to prop up your stock. That's what they consider securities fraud.

Now many legal observers think this is unprecedented. So for her to sit down and do an interview that's going to be an hour and answering every question, that takes a lot of courage.

I think her feeling is there are two courts. There is a court in January that's going to try her, and there is the court of public opinion, and she does not...

O'REILLY: Public opinion. That's what she's playing on with you.

WALTERS: Because someone doesn't, you know, like her personality...

O'REILLY: All right. One of the interesting parts of the interview you did with her that I picked up on right away was she said she made a big mistake on the CBS program, ignoring the reporter's questions and chopping up the coleslaw, right?

WALTERS: Yes, yes. Well, she was quite funny about that because she did make a mistake. This is one of the reasons that, you know, people say, oh, Martha. She said she will never make coleslaw again.

O'REILLY: And that's a tragedy, isn't it?

WALTERS: No, but it shows she has a little sense of humor.

O'REILLY: All right. Barbara Walters interviewing Martha Stewart tomorrow on "20/20." Going to get a big number, as always. Lucky we're not up against you on that.

WALTERS: I feel that way all the time.

O'REILLY: All right. Thanks, Barbara, for coming in. We appreciate it. Always good to see you.

WALTERS: Thank you.

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