Oh Canada!

This is a partial transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," September 9, 2005, that has been edited for clarity.

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JOHN GIBSON, GUEST HOST: In the second "Factor Follow-up" segment tonight, generous offers of hurricane aid have been pouring in from around the world, but the donation of one close neighbor piqued Bill's interest.


O'REILLY: Canada not sending any money. Two helicopters, 32-person rescue team, medical supplies. Not a big showing from Canada.

TONY SNOW, HOST, "THE TONY SNOW SHOW": Yes. That's an interesting one because the State Department is making the argument in the case of some of these countries they've made offers. And we've said, you know, "We don't need all that. Here's what we need."

O'REILLY: Right.

SNOW: I've been told by friends in the northern, especially the upper Midwest, Canada is still shipping oil relatively cheap, which is why you get your gas a lot cheaper in Minnesota than you do, say, New York or Washington, D.C.

O'REILLY: I don't know what the situation is with Canada. They've helped us out before. But I'm going to let them have a pass on this.


GIBSON: OK, well, we're going to find out what the situation is. Frank McKenna is the Canadian ambassador to the U.S. He joins us now from Washington.

So Mr. McKenna, welcome.


GIBSON: Bill was looking for lots of cash. I suppose the very first thing you'd want to tell me is that Canada is exporting to the United States an extra 91,000 barrels of oil a day to help ease supply disruptions. And that sounds pretty good and thank you.

MCKENNA: Look, thanks for saying that.

And unfortunately, Bill was sent some wrong information here. And I appreciate the chance to correct the record.

Not only are we turning on the taps in terms of oil and natural gas, but we've had one of the most generous and one of the most rapid responses of any nation in the world.

We have four ships that are sailing down as we speak, filled with provisions. We've opened our own national emergency stockpiles. We have Red Cross workers there. Air Canada planes have been down there. We have a dive team, 45 divers, Army and Navy, that are down there. We've had search and rescue people down there. We've had donations from provinces of cash.

GIBSON: Mr. McKenna, you kind of embarrassed us. The Vancouver search and rescue team showed up in St. Bernard's Parish before any of the American search and rescue teams. Appreciate the help, but you know, you're not supposed to embarrass us.

MCKENNA: Well, you know, the intention is not to embarrass. But we -- we're neighbors. And you've got a problem here, and Canadians -- look, I have to tell you this. Members of Parliament and cabinet ministers in Ottawa tell me their phones have rung off the hook from Canadians, demanding that Canada get in and be generous and be quick, because our neighbors were in trouble and our neighbor is in trouble. And we're really pleased to be there.

GIBSON: You know, Ambassador McKenna, just let me have you address one thing. We know that there are lots of people in Canada on the left side of the political spectrum who don't like George Bush. Is there any, any part of this big Canadian help designed to maybe embarrass the president?

MCKENNA: The -- the president today was kind enough to single out the Canadian contribution, and we've received that kind of praise from legislators across the country.

This has got nothing to do with George Bush. It's got nothing to do with our relationship, which is excellent, by the way. This has got to do with the fact that we have been neighbors and friends for hundreds of years. You have come to our aid when we've been in trouble, and Canadians want to be with you when you're in trouble.

It's as simple as that. It transcends everything else. It is simply a case of uncompromising support at a time when a neighbor is in trouble.

GIBSON: All right. Now Ambassador McKenna, let me just list some of the other stuff that Canada is contributing.

Four military ships and helicopter detachments with four military divers; British Columbia's 45-man Vancouver Urban Search and Rescue Team; 20,000 beds and 20,000 blankets.

Air Canada provided rescue flights to evacuate New Orleans. A convoy of logistical support vehicles and health supply provisions was sent.

The Canadian Red Cross sending its disaster personnel to the area. Nova Scotia donated $100,000 to the Canadian Red Cross for use there. The Canadian embassy in D.C. is holding a fundraiser.

Transport Canada has arranged to waive the toll at the Canada-U.S. border, which is a big deal.

Several private banks donated one point -- $3.5 million to Katrina relief funds. And of course, Celine Dion is pledging $1 million in relief.

Ambassador Frank McKenna, I've got to run. Thanks a lot for bringing us up to date and coming in. We appreciate it.

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