Dennis Miller on the Rise of Mitt Romney and the Fall of John Edwards

This is a partial transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," May 30, 2007, that has been edited for clarity.

BILL O’REILLY, HOST: In the "Miller Time" segment tonight, Dennis Miller has been having a lot of fun on his syndicated radio program for Westwood One. And he joins us from L.A. to share the joy.

Now I know you saw "The Factor" last night. We were pretty tough on John Edwards. We showed his house from above and went to the trailer park across the street to interview the folks who don't really like him. Were we unfair to the former senator from North Carolina?

DENNIS MILLER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, Bill, first off I have to say that "Factor" was like the night the Beatles were on the Sullivan show. My favorite "Factor" ever.

O'REILLY: Thank you.

MILLER: And I love it when you weighed in on Edwards, because to me the guy's just an overly coiffed pillar of dim. He makes Clifford Irving look like Sir Thomas Moore. And if you say you can't see through that guy like used Neutrogena, then that Democrat apologist was in complete denial.

Listen, nobody's trying to kill the messenger. We just want to believe that the messenger feels it and hasn't memorized it. And Edwards is just a guy who's been told by his handlers that this time around the gimmick should be no gimmick.

I love it when you go across the street. There are houses there that Tom Joad would have passed on. And I loved it when you talked to those people. They wouldn't have spent $400 on their hair in their entire life.

You see the mother ship right there. I kept looking for the pea pod people to lead Richard Dreyfuss up to the front door. It's like the mother ship out of "Close Encounters." You can't put the rib kick in on John Edwards enough for me, because that is an empty vessel, my friend.

O'REILLY: OK, but he's earned his money by suing major corporations for damages, and some people say that was good, some people bad. He has a right as a capitalist to buy his 30,000 square foot house and spend whatever he spent on it.

The problem I have is that he's telling the people across the street in the trailer park that the system's rigged, that it's rigged. And here's Edwards, who came from a humble beginning, buying this chalet.

And if it's rigged, how come Edward got there? And what message are you sending to the people across the street who despise you? And I think they despise him because he just doesn't deal with them at all.

MILLER: Bill, there are two Americas; those who buy Edwards and those who think he's a complete phony. I am in the latter camp. And it's one of the things I have trouble with the Democratic Party now when they circle the hybrids. They all get into lock step on the message.

At some point somebody in the Democratic side of this should say, "You know what? Can't even defend the guy. You're right. A complete phony."

O'REILLY: He is a phony. Again, we know him and he is. And that's too bad. I'm sorry I have to say that.

Now, Mitt Romney according to a Rasmussen poll is up to 16 percent. Your guy, Rudy, is at 25. It looks like Romney's getting some traction. What do you think about that?

MILLER: Well, I'm wondering at the TIME photo you're showing. I don't remember, but that must be them sort of aping the notes on an old TIME cover with his dad, George.

Listen, I am a Rudy guy. I've often said that. I'm going to introduce the mayor at an L.A. fundraiser later tonight. I think that Rudy, as far as terrorism goes, is just entering his peak killing years. And that's why I'm for him.

But I must say that Romney is a pretty smooth customer. I think he's done great in the debates so far. And I think his plan, and it's a pretty smart one, is to lever the whole heist with Iowa and New Hampshire. Old school stuff. Spend some money there. Do some local ads. Put your bass widgeons on the ground. Shake some hands.

Then later in the summer you go out to Ames for that straw poll. Bus people in, or hay cart them in, or whatever they have to do. Show some muscle and then beat these guys in the second quarter earnings.

O'REILLY: But you've got a very — how important in this world is Romney's appearance? Which, I mean, you can't get more presidential looking than Mitt Romney.

I mean, look, if you were to make up a guy, this would be the guy, you know, that looks presidential. He's got the jaw going on, the little gray thing in there. And I think that means a lot in America.

MILLER: Well, I do, too. But when you back it up with the fact that he's competent, too. He ran a pretty tight Olympics. And you know, this is the guy who invented Staples. And I think he understands a step-by-step business plan. And I think the Staples thing is going to come out as adversaries best keep their head up, because it will be death by a thousand cuts with Romney. It will be a very...

O'REILLY: Staples, the Staples department store? Is that what you're saying?

MILLER: Staples office stores.

O'REILLY: Yes, the office stores.

MILLER: Romney was there at the beginning of that.


MILLER: So he's as pretty savvy guy. Not only does he look good, he's good at what he does.

O'REILLY: You live in a very liberal place, Los Angeles, southern California. And last night we had the Boulder, Colorado, high school assembly, where the three pinheads came on and told the kids to use Ecstasy, have homosexual sex, as well as every other kind of sex. Don't really use a condom, because it's too hard to put on. And if you want some pot we'll tell you how to get it. This is in a mandatory high school assembly. What say you?

MILLER: If I was a parent I'd walk down there and punch somebody in the nose. I mean, that's reprehensible to me. I don't care if it's Boulder. I don't care if everybody is, you know, like an aging hipster there.

Is there anything sadder than them floating these guys in from L.A. to act like they're cool in front of high school kids? The guy calling a prescription a script. And he's got all that hip lingo down.

You know something? This is like the guy who comes back to college the year after he graduates and hangs out around the keg so he can hit on undergrads. It's sad.

You're adults now. If you want to lead that life, fine. Nobody wants to get in your way. Go do the libertarian thing. These are kids. They don't know better. They look up at you, and they're told that you know something about it. You're talking about unprotected sex? If I was a parent, I'd pop somebody in the snout. I'm sorry. Enough's enough.

O'REILLY: You and I, if we lived in Boulder and our kids were in that school, I think probably would have rumbled. We probably would have — and you know, the only thing I can do is chase those three pinheads around Boulder. But isn't it hard to believe in America in 2007 that this is happening? I'm just astounded.

MILLER: Well, I'm more astounded if what you said is correct. Have they been invited back for next year?

O'REILLY: Yes. But it's going to be an optional assembly. They're not going to force the kids to go. But they've been invited back. This Boulder outfit has no remorse at all, Miller. No remorse. Just like you. No remorse for anything you ever say.

MILLER: Listen, Bill, it's times like this that I feel like Heston waking up, as I said, in the field, and the chimp's on top of the pony. I don't know what to make of the world any more.

O'REILLY: And neither does Tom Joad, you know? God bless him.

Dennis Miller, everybody. We'll see you next week.


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