Tags: oreilly | mccain

Bill O'Reilly: McCain Must 'Feel the Pain'

Thursday, 16 Oct 2008 02:00 PM

By Phil Brennan

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Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly tells Newsmax that John McCain can still win the November election if he’ll “feel that pain’ Americans are suffering over the financial crisis — and pin the blame on the Democrats.

The host of “The O’Reilly Factor,” whose new book “A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity” (Broadway Books) has sold an astounding 200,000 copies in three weeks, also called Democratic Rep. Barney Frank a “villain,” said McCain has been running a “strange” campaign — and wondered why he hasn’t given running mate Alaska exposure to his 20 million viewers by allowing her to be a guest on his show.

[Editor's Note: Get “A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity” FREE — Go Here Now].

Newsmax: The Democrats have attacked McCain for his negative attacks on Obama despite the fact that their commercials have been far more negative than McCain’s, yet the media ignores the overwhelming number of negative Obama ads to concentrate on McCain’s fewer negative ads.

O’Reilly: There's no doubt, if you look at the Internet, if you look at the mass media, the left feels very comfortable lodging personal attacks. They do it every day on MSNBC. They do it every day in the New York Times. This is what they make a living doing.

To hear them squawking about some people screaming stuff out at a Palin rally, using the buzzword “hockey moms” - when I see something that blatant I get on it.

Newsmax: Do you agree that what they’ve tried to do is intimidate McCain?

O’Reilly: Absolutely. There's no doubt in my mind that they don't want the [Rev. Jeremiah] Wright thing to be discussed so they bring up this racist [smear]. But that game has been played for a long, long time in far-left precincts. If you don't agree with them, you're a bigot. If you want secure borders, you’re anti-Hispanic. If you're opposing gay marriage you are homophobic. That game has been on the drawing board for them for 25 years.

And they’re never called on it because the media is sympathetic to that point of view. So that's what's going on.

Newsmax: Haven't they tried to prevent McCain from going into the things that they know are damaging to Obama, and hasn't it seemed to have worked?

O’Reilly: You can't get inside McCain's head but certainly his campaign on a lot of different levels has been a strange campaign. They don't seem to understand the doubt that voters have about Barack Obama.

They don't seem to get that and they don't seem to understand that the Senator has to go out and feel the pain of the American people at a time when there's a massive amount of pain on display. These are two big mistakes the McCain campaign is making. Whether they continue to make [them], we’ll see.

Newsmax: Isn’t it very difficult for McCain to attack Obama's obvious weak points when the media and the left have made them off-limits?

O’Reilly: He can't be thinking about the left. If he’s intimidated by the left, if he's worried about what Frank Rich or MSNBC is going to say, then he's dead. He's got to be aggressive and he's got to put forth his point of view and why these things are important.

I understand that you've just don't want to bring the Rev. Wright in as a major campaign issue on a stand-alone basis, but if you have an opinion on why that's important - why Americans should evaluate that kind of situation – well, state your case. But you have to do it in a way that's bigger than just “those guys.”

But again, 60 percent of people are just going to vote on the economy issue and McCain has been unable to convince them that he feels their pain on that issue.

Newsmax: You mentioned the doubt many Americans feel about Obama. Is there enough unease - an uncertainty factor here - that might be able to turn the tide for McCain?

O’Reilly: If you look at the flat line polls on the 21st of September - I'm a numbers guy. One of the things people don't understand about me is that I'm not an ideological guy. I hold my positions pretty strongly but I'm not trying to promote anybody or any point of view. So I'm a numbers guy, and if you look at September 21st - that is when the economy started to wobble – on that day McCain was ahead in most polls and ahead in most battleground states.

Less than a month later, he is behind 5 to 9 points nationally in every poll and he's behind in every battleground state except Ohio, where he's tied.

It's obvious the economy has driven his numbers down. They haven't helped Obama - he hasn't moved one point. He’s still where he was on the 21st, around 49-50. But McCain has fallen because people are angry, and the independents are taking their anger out on the Republicans.

He can turn that around, but he hasn’t and he’s had two weeks to do it and he hasn't done it. And that tells me he may never do it.

Newsmax: It's not that he doesn't have a case. The whole financial debacle has been caused by Democrats like Chris Dodd and Barney Frank and the way they covered up the problems at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

O’Reilly: Absolutely. I went after Barney Frank pretty hard. Did McCain miss that? Frank’s a villain. He tried to mislead everybody on my show, telling them that he didn't flag Fannie Mae, that he didn't say that everything was going forward, that everything was going to be fine. That's a lie!

[Editor's Note: Read a Newsmax review of “A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity” — Go Here Now].

Newsmax: Has McCain failed to make the case?

O’Reilly: Oh yeah. He has not captured any of the anger and betrayal that Americans feel. He hadn't done any of that. It's inexplicable to me - I don't know why. I understand why he wants to stay away from Rev. Wright, why he doesn't want to get into that sewer. That's legitimate. But not getting into the betrayal of the American people by corrupt Wall Street people and federal overseers who didn't do their jobs? You've got to feel the pain. You've got to go in.

Obama can't go in, because if he goes in, he’s in his own backyard. He's with Frank and Dodd and Pelosi. He’s in with all these guys. He can't throw them overboard. So McCain’s got the field all to himself. He's already said that [SEC Chairman Christopher] Cox, a Republican, should quit. I don't know what's holding him up. I don't know whether they're not smart enough.

Newsmax: Has the McCain camp put the damper on Sarah Palin, the best weapon they’ve got?

O’Reilly: The problem with Palin is that for some reason Palin has not been on my program, and we've invited her many, many times. They seem to be frightened of putting Sarah Palin out. That's all I know. I don't know her, I don't know what her ability is. I know that she's excellent in front of crowds, but they keep her in front of the choir. They're not bringing her out into the independent precincts. They're keeping her off programs like mine where 20 million would people would see it.

An interview with me and Palin would be as big as my interview with Barack Obama. They're keeping her away. So you tell me again, what are they doing?

From what I’ve seen of her out in public she is a tremendous performer. Whether she has enough to sway independents, which is what they have to do to win the election, I just don't know.

[Editor's Note: Get “A Bold Fresh Piece of Humanity” FREE — Go Here Now].

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