Fox News host and best-selling author Bill O’Reilly tells Newsmax that Mitt Romney deserved to lose the presidential election because he “ran and hid” during the last weeks of his campaign.
O’Reilly also declares there is “no way” United States Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice will replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State — and the job will go instead to Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry.
O’Reilly’s nightly show “The O’Reilly Factor” is the highest rated cable news program in the country.
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His latest book is “Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot,”
co-written with Martin Dugard, about the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Released in October, the eye-opening book already holds the No. 1 position on The New York Times list of best-selling works.
In an exclusive interview with Newsmax TV, O’Reilly expresses his feelings about Mitt Romney’s failed presidential campaign.
“I was very disappointed in the governor, very disappointed,” O’Reilly says.
“He ran and he hid for the last two weeks of the campaign. He actually hid. He wouldn’t come on [our show]. He wouldn’t come on other high-profile programs on television and tell people what he believed. He wouldn’t do it. He deserved to lose.
“He made a mistake. Hurricane Sandy blows him off the front page for five days — and what’s his answer? He hides.
“He got three million less votes than John McCain. Are you kidding me? With all of the money they spent, and McCain had to run into a recession, and Romney gets three million less votes? Come on.
“It’s almost self-inflicted wounds, and that’s why people are so disappointed, because their expectations for Mitt Romney were so high. If the election were held before Hurricane Sandy, Romney would have won.
“You’ve got to take the fight to the other side. You can’t be hiding. I was just flabbergasted at what Governor Romney did the last week in the campaign. I was stunned. And I wasn’t rooting for Romney. And that’s one of the reasons he didn’t come on the program, because he knew I was going to ask him tough questions.
“But the fact is that he didn’t take advantage of visibility, when he had none, in the last week of the campaign.”
As for bringing more minorities, particularly Hispanics, into the GOP, O’Reilly says: “First of all, you’ve got to get the immigration thing under control, because the Hispanics are mad at the Republican Party, so 71 percent voted for Barack Obama. You’ve got to get that done. There’s got to be some kind of policy that’s fair and doesn’t punish innocent people whose parents dragged them here.
“The Republican Party doesn’t have to compromise its core values, but it does have to do outreach and convince people that [Republicans are] not bad people. They’re not trying to take away birth-control pills or whatever crazy thing the other side is saying.”
O’Reilly also tells Newsmax that Ambassador Susan Rice, who remains under fire for her early explanations of the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya that killed four Americans, will not be confirmed as Secretary of State.
“No way. It’s not happening,” he says. “You can’t embarrass yourself the way that she did and be Secretary of State. It’s not going to happen. John Kerry will be the new Secretary of State.”
In other comments during his Newsmax interview, O’Reilly observes that David Petraeus did the right thing by resigning as CIA director over an extramarital affair with his biographer.
“You can’t be running your secret life and be in charge of protecting the country. It just doesn’t work. You can’t have the CIA chief running a secret operation in his own personal life.”
O’Reilly also says embattled Attorney General Eric Holder engaged in a cover-up by not telling President Barack Obama that Petraeus was under investigation by the FBI, aiding Obama’s re-election bid.
“Do I believe that? Yeah. Can I prove it? Not yet,” O’Reilly declares.
“The FBI obviously in the summer knew. They have to report to Holder. They knew. They probably said: ‘Hey, you know, slow it down a little bit. Let’s get this election done and then we’ll go in.’ That seems logical. Can I prove it? Again, can’t prove it. But do I believe it? Yes, I believe it.”
O’Reilly adds that it is too early to pass judgment on Gen. John Allen, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, who is under FBI investigation for alleged "inappropriate communications" with Jill Kelley, who made the call that initiated the Petraeus investigation.
“We’re still investigating it. We don’t take other reports on ‘The Factor.’ We do our own, and we don’t know right now. I will say that this is terrible for the country, and Allen is a good commander. Petraeus was a good CIA chief. And I feel very bad for them and their families.”
Editor's Note: See more video from Bill O’Reilly and read another excerpt from the interview. Click here.
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