Is Ron Paul Hurting the Libertarian Movement?

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," October 4, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the "Stossel Matters" segment tonight: Ron Paul clocks in at about 11 percent in the latest presidential survey and continues to make his case across the nation. In New Hampshire, he said that President Obama might be impeached for using drones to kill Al Qaeda terrorists.


RON PAUL, GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think the impeachment process would be possible and -- but it requires the Senate. You could do more investigating to find out exactly what was going on and how they flaunted the law and who personally was responsible. But I do. I put responsibility on the president.


O'REILLY: Most Americans disagree with Congressman Paul. They like the drone program. And the congressman also believes it's acceptable for Iran to build a nuclear weapon.

The question this evening: Is Ron Paul hurting the libertarian movement? Here now, Fox Business anchor, John Stossel. Are you…

JOHN STOSSEL, FBN ANCHOR: No, he's not hurting it. He is the libertarian movement, much of it.

O'REILLY: OK. But I just want to get -- you are a libertarian, right?

STOSSEL: I am. Proudly

O'REILLY: Do you get a little card? Can you -- does it say…

STOSSEL: No, we're not like those parties with cards.

O'REILLY: Like a blood card. Like "I'm a libertarian. Give my blood to Ron Paul if I die" or something like that. You don't have a little thing?

STOSSEL: I do have a little thing.

O'REILLY: What do you have?

STOSSEL: I have the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

O'REILLY: Libertarians own the Constitution, right?

STOSSEL: We believe in it. We think it's a good thing.

O'REILLY: All right. So Ron Paul says that in the middle of a war using the hellfire missiles fired from predator drones could be an impeachable offense, and you say?

STOSSEL: I'm glad you said "could be impeachable." At the top of the show you said he was calling for impeachment. He was just answering a question. He said all the presidents since I've been in Congress have done some things that violated the Constitution and, therefore, could be an impeachable offense.

O'REILLY: OK. How does the drone program violate the Constitution?

STOSSEL: Are you saying the president, the Executive Branch, without consulting with any other branch, can just go to any country and kill people without declaring war?

O'REILLY: Well, there you have me on a technical measure. I said from the very beginning, ladies and gentlemen, that the Congress should have declared war after 9/11 so that the president would have the authority. OK. But they danced around this by a variety of different ways. You know the dance. All right?

STOSSEL: Right. And I'm glad this guy got killed.

O'REILLY: And national security requires the president to order certain things. You're glad that they killed this al-Awlaki guy in Yemen?


O'REILLY: OK. I'm glad and most Americans are glad. So why are we making a big deal out of this?

STOSSEL: Because it makes me uncomfortable to think that the Executive Branch cannot even explain what the evidence is. Not consult…

O'REILLY: They explained what the evidence is. There's videotapes of this guy saying Americans should be killed all over the place.

STOSSEL: There -- those videotapes exist.


STOSSEL: But when the president's press secretary was asked about this, can you provide the evidence, explain the reasoning behind this, he didn't come up with anything. He said we're not talking about it.

O'REILLY: I can't speak for Jay Carney, but I can tell you there is beau coup evidence that this guy was involved with the Fort Hood shootings, that he was involved with a number of things where Americans were killed and he got taken out.

STOSSEL: He said I don't consult with anybody for the killing of Americans.

O'REILLY: All right.

STOSSEL: But it's a bad precedent.

O'REILLY: Now, you said -- and I just want to be clear -- you like Ron Paul's policies?


O'REILLY: You like it. But how can you sit there and say that when Ron Paul would be fine with Iran developing a nuclear weapon, which would be off the chart dangerous?

STOSSEL: Well, "fine" is an unfortunate choice…

O'REILLY: I asked him on this program. I asked Paul flat-out what he would do and I got a bunch of gobbledygook from him. And then he got mad because I wouldn't allow him to give me a lesson -- a history lesson for three hours on the Middle East. OK? And he said a week ago, well, Israel -- drawing a moral equivalency to Israel, Iran to Israel -- well, Israel has them so they should be able to have them. That's insane.

O'REILLY: Well I disagree with the equivalency with Israel, but what's your alternative? We're going to conquer and…

O'REILLY: There's a bunch of things we could do.

STOSSEL: …occupy a country 2 1/2 times the size of Iraq and then pry the yet to be invented nuclear weapons from their cold, dead hands.

O'REILLY: You can't occupy it. You can't do that.

STOSSEL: That's crazy, too.

O'REILLY: You can't do that, but you can blockade if you have to. You can do…

STOSSEL: We have sanctions. They rarely have worked.

O'REILLY: They don't work.


O'REILLY: But there is a whole bunch of things you can do, all right, to send a message to Iran that this is not going to be accepted by us. But Paul's message is, "Go ahead."

STOSSEL: Those missiles can't reach us. They can't deliver them here.

O'REILLY: Oh, that's good.

STOSSEL: It's not good.

O'REILLY: They can't reach us, so let's blow up Ireland. Come on. I think Paul does a lot of damage to the libertarian cause.

STOSSEL: You can either invade a country or leave them alone and trade with them. When goods cross borders, armies don't.

O'REILLY: OK. I don't think any American -- many Americans are interested in trading with Iran. I think we're all…

STOSSEL: I think that government will collapse of its own authoritarian mistakes.

O'REILLY: Well, my idea is to send Ron Paul over there and maybe that would hasten the collapse. Stossel, thank you for taking the fire.

STOSSEL: Thank you, Bill.

O'REILLY: We appreciate it.

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