This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," August 29, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Now we may just be starting down the road to 2012, but it's already clear that the mainstream media have set their sights on Rick Perry and are determined to take him down.
Now he's been tarred as a racist, religious zealot. And today, Politico.com completes the slanderous trifecta with the headline that blaring, is Rick Perry dumb? They read, quote, "Strip away the euphemisms and Rick Perry is confronting an unavoidable question. Is he dumb or just 'misunderestimated'?"
The article goes on to read, quote, "In Austin, he's been derided as a right place, right time pol who looks the part but isn't so deep."
Now, the question of intelligence is one the mainstream media never bothered to ask about President Obama. But today, Biggovernment.com, well, they doing just that.
Now forget what the liberal media is saying, they want to know this, is President Obama smart?
Joining me with reaction, the editor of the Daily Caller, Fox News contributor Tucker Carlson. Democratic strategist Steve McMahon.
All right. Steve, let's take a little run down memory lane. Well, you know, I mean, if he's such a genius, you would have, you know, not lost two-and-a-half million jobs, he would have cut the deficit in half like he promised. He would have done all this things. Let's take a look at some of Obama's gaffes that a lot of people didn't pay attention to.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THEN-SENATOR BARACK OBAMA, MAY 9, 2008: I've now been in 57 states.
OBAMA, MAY 26, 2008: On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes, and I see many of them in the audience here today.
OBAMA, APRIL 4, 2009: I don't know what the term is in Austrian, wheeling and dealing.
OBAMA, FEB. 4, 2010: Navy Corpseman Christian Bouchard.
OBAMA: Corpsman Bouchard responded...
OBAMA: ... to the men and women like Corpseman Bouchard.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: What is a Navy corpseman?
STEVE MCMAHON, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: I don't know, Sean. I don't know, Sean. But you know.
HANNITY: He read it three times, one speech. He doesn't know what a corpsman is. Genius that he is, brilliant that, you know.
MCMAHON: The conversation that we should be having, this conversation --
HANNITY: No, no, I don't want -- listen, I want to have my conversation.
MCMAHON: I understand. I understand --
HANNITY: I want to know what President Obama doesn't know what a Navy corpsman is, I want to know! That's my conversation. I ask the questions, you answer them. Why didn't he know what a Navy corpsman is? And why did he say corpseman three times in one speech?
MCMAHON: Come on.
HANNITY: Come on what?
MCMAHON: So, you are going to sit here and call the president names. The guy was the president of the Harvard Law Review and, you know, I went to law school...
HANNITY: I'd like to read his thesis and, you know...
MCMAHON: He was president of the Harvard Law Review, Sean. You know what that means.
HANNITY: All right. Can we see his grades? I've never seen his grades.
MCMAHON: It is not a school filled with people who can't spell their name. Or who can't pronounce words. Being the president of the United States, Sean --
HANNITY: Excuse me, with all due respect. It is impossible -- excuse me, this isn't a gaffe. He read his teleprompter three times and he doesn't know the name corpsman. And he's the commander in chief and you don't have the courage to admit it!
MCMAHON: Sean, I admit that he mispronounced the word but I'm not going to sit here and have a conversation with you about whether or not President Obama is a smart man. He was the president of the Harvard Law Review.
HANNITY: If he's such a genius, he would know that a corpseman doesn't exist.
TUCKER CARLSON, THE DAILY CALLER: Hold on, slow down. But he's not the only president who went to Harvard, so did George W. Bush, who was derided as a moron. The point is not what your credentials are, it's not how much you brag about your intelligence as Obama has implicitly through his entire public career. You can claim to be the greatest quarterback in American history, if you don't throw any touchdown passes, you are lying. We just judge it by its fruits. And if Obama is so smart, the fruits don't suggest that. The country has not become a better place to live in the almost three years he's been president. It has in fact becoming a worse place to live. So, if he's genius, we're not seeing results.
MCMAHON: So, Tucker, let me ask you a question. You are a Washington guy, you're sports fan. When the Washington Redskins replaced their coach. You've heard of rebuilding, right? You don't put in a new coach in and inherit disastrous team that has no talent and then win 15 or 16 games, it doesn't happen.
CARLSON: But the team gets even worse, that's a bad sign.
MCMAHON: It doesn't happen when you inherit an economy like this.
HANNITY: I got to stop you here. Wait a minute. For two years, he had a Democratic House, Democratic Senate, he promised that unemployment wouldn't go above eight percent, he cut the deficit in half, he's quadrupled it. The economy has never been worse, none of his promises have come true. And you still want to blame the tsunami, you want to blame the Arab Spring, you want to blame George W. Bush. It is not working with the American people, Steve. Grow up and put your pants on, and it's time for him to take responsibility.
MCMAHON: Sean, this is the conversation that we should be having, whether the president's policies were smart for the country.
HANNITY: They failed.
MCMAHON: You have one view, I have another. And the voters get to decide which view is correct.
HANNITY: And 71percent of Americans now say that this president is doing a horrible job on the economy so they're agreeing with me.
MCMAHON: Well, the economy is in tough shape. And the president is the first person to admit it. But he inherited a tough economy. The question is.
HANNITY: So did Ronald Reagan, so did George Bush.
MCMAHON: The question Sean, is the economy getting better?
MCMAHON: And that's the question upon which people cast their votes in 2012. The White House and Obama understand that.
CARLSON: Well, actually, the question is, is the economy better or worse than the economy he inherited? And in fact, by every measure it is worse. I mean, that's demonstrable. The numbers tell that story? You know, that's not rhetoric, that's not a talking point, that's a fact.
HANNITY: All right. Let me ask Tucker this question. Tucker, do you think if you read corpseman three times. This is fascinating to me, because he's such a genius. Didn't he write a thesis at Columbia? I'd love for them to release it, I would love to see what it was about. I think in the spirit of being the most transparent administration he would be will going give it to us.
But let me ask you, do you think he made a mistake or do you think he didn't know what a corpsman was? I think it's the latter.
CARLSON: I don't think he has lived in a world populated by many corpsman and you know as well as I that that's the problem. That's not the milieu he comes out of. He comes out of a place where people use the world "milieu" actually.
The point, I would be satisfied with a dumb president, actually or one with bad taste or bad breath.
I just want a president who kind of knows what he's doing, has an understanding of basic economic principles sufficient to right the economy. This guy who I think does have a high I.Q. clearly doesn't understand basic economics and that's the problem.
MCMAHON: Sean, come on. You are saying when Politico does an ad hominem attack on Rick Perry is somehow wrong. And you sit here for a whole segment and making fun of the president saying corpseman instead of corpsman and basically it's an ad hominem attack. Let's talk about his policies --
HANNITY: Liberals like yourself referred to Reagan as an amiable dunce. You constantly attack Michele Bachmann's intelligence, Sarah Palin's intelligence.
CARLSON: That is true, by the way, Steve.
HANNITY: George Bush's intelligence and then all of a sudden -- every liberal is a genius that drives the economy into a ditch and then you say this guy is brilliant.
CARLSON: I got to say that's a hard point to argue with. Liberals do attack people's intelligence instinctively. The first thing they go to, you are a moron. Then you are a racist.
MCMAHON: You don't see me doing that.
CARLSON: No, but your friends do. You should ask them to stop.
MCMAHON: OK, they should stop, but we should have a conversation about the policies that these candidates for president are pursuing. That's the conversation --
HANNITY: We have that conversation every night.
MCMAHON: I know. Well, we are not having it tonight.
HANNITY: Well, I wish all the Navy corpsemen out there my best.
HANNITY: Appreciate you being with us, Steve.
CARLSON: That is a riot. I love that.
HANNITY: Steve doesn't like it.
MCMAHON: When do I get an easy segment?
HANNITY: Do you think he made a mistake or do you think he didn't know? Just be honest.
MCMAHON: I think he made a mistake. For God's sake, he caught Usama bin Laden.
HANNITY: Thanks to George Bush and Dick Cheney, he had the intelligence.
MCMAHON: Come on.
HANNITY: Listen, he gave the order, I give him credit. He gave the order. But it wouldn't have happened without the intelligence from enhanced interrogations.
MCMAHON: He was smart enough to do that.
HANNITY: I got that go. Thanks again to all our Navy corpseman viewers out there.
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