I love Chris Matthews
Thu, 07/17/2003 - 14:45
Transcript from Hardball a few nights ago:
MATTHEWS: We're back with more "Political Buzz" with Congressman Dennis Kucinich of Ohio, who's running for president, and Duncan Hunter.
Here's the Congressman Kucinich earlier today addressing the Human Rights Campaign, a gay and lesbian political advocacy group..
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KUCINICH: I would nominate any gay to the Supreme Court, or lesbian or bisexual or transgendered person to the Supreme Court, as long as they were ready to uphold Roe v. Wade.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: What are we to make of that, Congressman Kucinich, statement?
KUCINICH: You're to make of it that equality before the law is an essential and cardinal principle of our government. And in addition to that, women in our society will never truly have equality if Roe v. Wade is repealed, and so I'm take a stand of behalf of equality for everyone.
MATTHEWS: But it just looks like the most patent kind of pandering. You're saying the only issue that matters to you in terms of picking a Supreme Court justice, in terms of the person's background, the only issue that matters to you is an issue on which you took a 180 degree different position throughout your career.
In other words, you will only accept judges on the Supreme Court who totally disagreed with you your entire life until recently when you decided to run for president and go national.
KUCINICH: Actually, Chris, what I'm saying here is that I believe that upholding Roe v. Wade...
MATTHEWS: But you were always against it. Now you're for it and saying if a judge is against it, they can be gay, straight, transgender, whatever, as long as they agree with you this instant and they didn't agree with you your whole career. It looks like pandering and it looks like, I don't know what. Hypocrisy of the worst kind. But go ahead. Explain it.
KUCINICH: OK. Thanks, Chris. I think criminalization of abortion would set this country back.
MATTHEWS: Who is proposing criminalization of abortion?
KUCINICH: Actually, Congress has been increasingly moving in the direction.
MATTHEWS: Who supports criminal punishments for abortion.
KUCINICH: Congress has been increasingly moving in the direction towards criminalization.
MATTHEWS: Name a U.S. congressperson.
KUCINICH: It's a fact.
MATTHEWS: Name a Congressperson who supports putting people in jail for having an abortion. Name one.
KUCINICH: Trent Lott, at the beginning of this Congress, stated that it was the number one agenda for his, the legislative agenda to move forward to make abortion illegal.
MATTHEWS: No, you said to put them in jail, to criminalize abortion. Name a member of Congress who wants to-name any member of Congress in either party who says put a person in jail for having an abortion. Name one.
KUCINICH: I campaigned for Congress in 1996 against an opponent who was backing a constitutional amendment to make abortion illegal. And what I'm saying that it's important in this country-
MATTHEWS: You didn't say that. You said criminalize it. You said put a person in jail for having an abortion. Do you believe any member of Congress wants to do that?
KUCINICH: Well, I think there are members of Congress who want to do that. That's absolutely right.
MATTHEWS: Name one.
KUCINICH: This isn't about naming one.
MATTHEWS: Name one. Name one.
KUCINICH: I think Chris Smith would support it. I do...
MATTHEWS: He would. Well, that's a nice subjective move, but you don't have his testimony supporting it. We'll check with him on that. I think it's a rotten thing to say.
Let's go on...
KUCINICH: What's a rotten thing to say?
MATTHEWS: To say that somebody in Congress wants to put a woman in jail for having an abortion when you don't even know their name.
KUCINICH: Well, you asked me to...
MATTHEWS: Name one.
KUCINICH: You asked me to who would be responsible and take that kind of a position. And I think Chris has had a strong position all of his life on it, and I think he's probably be..
MATTHEWS: You're desperate. Let's move on here