This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," September 10, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And joining us now is an actor, activist, close friend of President Obama, and author of the brand-new book, "The Conversation: How Black Men and Women Can Build Loving, Trust Relationships." Hill Harper is here.

Hill, how are you? Good to see you. Thank you for coming out.

HILL HARPER, AUTHOR: Thanks so much.

HANNITY: There's a lot of the book I agree with, but I'm not going to start there.

HARPER: You don't want to start with the book?

HANNITY: No, no. Because everyone is intrigued. You've know Barack Obama, for, what, 20 years now?

HARPER: Twenty years.

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HANNITY: Now you know I'm not a fan of his.

HARPER: And I'm not exactly sure why. I'll tell you that. I've known him — I've known him for 20 years, and he's easily one of the most intelligent, caring and really concerned patriots that I know. I mean, he really — he's a hard worker. And I think he's...

HANNITY: I've read all your interviews. You've said all these wonderful things about Barack and about Michelle.

One of the good parts, I think, that you brought out is, you know, they both saw the potential in each other.

HARPER: Absolutely.

HANNITY: And I think that's a great story, and I think the fact that — seemingly loving parents and good parents. I mean, no one is disagreeing with that.

Here's — let me ask you from my side...


HANNITY: ... in terms of political differences, because you even refer to him as a complete truth teller. That's a phrase that you've used about Barack Obama.

HARPER: I've known him for 20 years.

HANNITY: Twenty years.


HANNITY: I don't understand the Barack Obama that hangs out with Bernadine Dohrn and Bill Ayers, an unrepentant terrorist. And wait a minute. And I don't believe he was completely honest that he didn't know about Jeremiah Wright, so I don't think he's a complete truth teller. I think he's politically expedient.

HARPER: I'll tell you, Sean, you know, I have no — I have, like, no dog in the race in the sense that I've known him for 20 years, and I can — I'm not in politics. I'm not running for any office. So it doesn't — my paycheck doesn't come from... it doesn't matter.

HARPER: That's not the point.

HANNITY: You saying he didn't know, when he said, "That is not the man I knew," did you really believe that?

HARPER: Absolutely, absolutely.

HANNITY: I don't believe that.

HARPER: It's true. And he is a guy who has such a level of integrity. He's an incredible family man. Incredible, he worked so hard to help people.

HANNITY: I've got the platitudes but you're not answering my question.

HARPER: No I'm answering the question. I'm telling you –

HANNITY: Let me pin you down and ask you a question.

HARPER: And also, let me say...

HANNITY: How do you explain this...

HARPER: He, quote unquote, "hung out with all of these people"?

HANNITY: Yes, he did.

HARPER: No, he didn't.

HANNITY: All right, let me ask you a question about your book, because there are things in your book. And I want to get this in, because I actually — I like your book.

HARPER: Thank you.

HANNITY: I honestly — there's things in here. The only thing I disagree with in the book is — is when you talk about, for example, sex and you talk about debt in the black community; and you talk about, you know, how you have changed in your particular life; how you would, you know, advise your daughter in the future, if you have a daughter; when you talk about, for example, 34 percent of African-American children are raised in two-parent households today, you know, 1966 that was 85 percent.


HANNITY: I don't think this is black or white. I think this is about values. And I think...

HARPER: Absolutely.

HANNITY: ... every single American, this is universal. Because if you believe we're all created by God, everybody can benefit from what you're saying there. That's a message of character.

HARPER: Without question. The whole book and the root of the book is the idea of kindness and character and finding that in your partner. And the fact that partnership works. And it's really from a single guy's perspective, basically making the argument to other single men and single women, hey, step up to the plate. Really invest in partnership. That's what — get married. Find a partner to build a life with.

That's the way this country's been built.

HANNITY: So why aren't you married? You're dating a new girl...

HARPER: I talk about — I talk about the relationship that's been ongoing in my life in the book.

HANNITY: Why don't you ask? Look into the camera. You can ask her right now.

HARPER: Really?

HANNITY: Go ahead.

HARPER: Only if you'll be my best man.


Only — listen, if you'll be there as my best man.

HANNITY: I'll go.

HARPER: OK. You know, and you're going to stand there...

HANNITY: Go ahead.

HARPER: ... right next to President Obama?

HANNITY: I'd love to — President Obama come on the show. I'd love to — I'm a nice guy. Right?

HARPER: Listen, Sean, nobody's ever debated whether you were nice. It's just that people have to understand the difference between news and entertainment.

HANNITY: This is an opinion show, with a strong news component. And we raise tough questions that the rest of the media ignores.

Now, I don't think he should have appointed a guy like Van Jones, or Holdren, or any of these other guys. Nor do I believe this story about Jeremiah Wright. Nor do I think he should have hung out with Bill Ayers.

HARPER: But let's not label people...

HANNITY: And you want to ignore — no, Bill Ayers is a terrorist. I'm going to label him a terrorist.

HARPER: He didn't appoint Bill Ayers.

HANNITY: No, but he gave speeches with him. And he started his political career in his house. It's bad judgment.

HARPER: If you actually just run down the facts, and if you look at it, and you don't over-push something. The idea is that you can find people that you can run into or have done things or sat on boards with...

HANNITY: I agree.

HARPER: ... that have made mistakes that have had problems, but you can do that with anybody.

HANNITY: I agree. That's a fair criticism. But I would say this: he has this history of long relationships. If four years into being in Jeremiah Wright's church, he would have said, "You know what? This guy's a nut. I'm out of here," I would have respected, I would have thought that was more honest than saying, "I had no idea he was this controversial," which I think was dishonest.

I'll give you the last word.

HARPER: Listen, I would just hope that, that folks would really look at who he is, look at his record, and you find that he's much more conservative in the way he goes about doing things. By the way he talks, it's absolutely true. He's much more moderate. I'm a fiscal conservative.

HANNITY: I think he's — portrays himself as moderate, and I think he is far more radical, as evidence by the people that he associates with for long periods of times and never distances himself from them.

HARPER: The idea of — of instilling fear in folks about associations — just look at the decisions he's made...

HANNITY: There's too many of them. There's way too many of them.

HARPER: No, it's not true.

HANNITY: Listen, if it was one, if it was short term, if he cut ties, I would have said — I'd have given him the benefit of the doubt.

HARPER: Why don't you start — why don't you start bragging about his association with me?

HANNITY: You're a good guy.

HARPER: Exactly. Say, "He hangs out with Hill Harper. That's a great thing."

HANNITY: Since I've met you — I've got to Google you now, find out if you have...

HARPER: You'll find all these bad associations.

HANNITY: I know.

HARPER: I think I'm pretty clean.

HANNITY: I like the values that you're espousing. They're values that Sean Hannity agrees with, a lot of them. I think your judgment on the president is wrong. But, you know, we — we allow both sides here on FOX News. Welcome to FOX News.

HARPER: Fair and balanced.

HANNITY: Fair and balanced.

HARPER: I've been — I've been his friend for 20 years, so I think I have a little more knowledge about the man and pundits that come on and never actually talk to him. You know, when you know somebody for 20 years —

HANNITY: Why don't you tell him to talk to me? Why does he duck me? Why won't he come on the show?

HARPER: He's got a lot of things to do than come on this show.

HANNITY: I know, he doesn't want –

HARPER: He's a busy guy.

HANNITY: He's used to getting these questions from the media, ooh, softballs one after the other. I've got to run. Appreciate you being with us. Thank you.

HARPER: Appreciate it.

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