On Thursday night’s The Factor, host Bill O’Reilly invited guest Liz Cheney onto the show while lamenting the fact that her father and co-author Dick Cheney doesn’t seem to like him very much. “What am I, chopped liver?” asked an amused Ms. Cheney.
O’Reilly then got right down to the nitty gritty, asking Cheney how her father and former President George H. Bush could have possibly “missed” the danger posed by the sub prime mortgage fiasco. Cheney responded that, actually, her father and President Bush had expended a lot of time and effort in trying to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, only to have those efforts blocked by Congressional Democrats. She added that the crisis ran deeper than anyone could have anticipated.
O’Reilly wasn’t buying it. “Oh, so they just didn’t know how bad it was? That’s the fair answer here?” he asked, sarcastically.
He then moved on to the war in Iraq, sharing with Cheney that he had, at least initially, gone on the record about his support for the Patriot Act and enhanced methods of interrogation implemented in Guantanamo Bay. The two then disagreed on U.S. troops being regarded as Iraq’s “liberators.” O’Reilly challenged Cheney on that point, saying that our troops were, actually, greeted with a sense of tentativeness and with hostility from many dissidents.
Cheney, it would appear, shares at least one notable quality with her father: Her ability to express her intense disagreement and disapproval in an extremely modulated, measured tone of voice:
I know how much you care about no spin. And I think it’s really important here. Saddam was an incredibly repressive dictator. The Iraqi people were very glad to see him go. Saddam had in place… there were elements from his regime that stayed in place, there were elements from Al Qaeda, elements from Iran who were there, who were ready, who launched a very bloody an insurgency…
An insurgency, O’Reilly interrupted, that was unanticipated by the U.S. Cheney continued:
When we removed Saddam Hussein, we made sure that there wasn’t going to be somebody in place who we knew had ties to terror, who we knew knew how to make weapons of mass destruction, who we knew had used them before, who we knew was supporting terrorists. We also, by the way, as soon as Saddam was gone, got a phone call from Muammar Gaddafi, who didn’t want to be next, who gave up his nuclear weapons.
I think that the notion that we now have in the heart of the Middle East, a democracy that is not supporting terrorists. It’s not perfect, but it is a huge accomplishment of the Bush administration, that we liberated all those people and the people in Afghanistan.
When O’Reilly said he would have “done things differently,” Cheney asked whether he would have “talked with Saddam” and asked him, like, “hey, you wanna step down?”
Watch the segment, via Fox News:
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