January 31st, 2016


Guests: Rep. Peter King and Political Consultant Bill O’Reilly

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Congressman Peter King

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King responds to GOP Rep. Chris Gibson’s comment about Trump on a previous episode of Effective Radio that “I have concerns about giving that guy an army”:

PK: “I understand the question he’s raising. I would say that it is something to think about, but I also think that Trump is at heart a businessman. He’s a dealmaker and I think he would, whatever temperamental quirks he may have or whatever, that his bottom line is to get the job done. So I don’t see him pressing the nuclear button or ordering the nuclear button pushed or sending troops into combat. But, again, [Gibson] is raising a legitimate issue and I think if Trump is the nominee, that is one of the issues he’s going to have to resolve for the sake of the American people. It’s one thing to get mad at Roger Ailes or Megyn Kelly or Ted Cruz, it’s another to take an insult from Putin personally or take one from the Chinese or the Iranians and just start dropping bombs. I wouldn’t think he would do that, but he’s going to have to show that he does have the temperament and realizes that running a country is different than building buildings in Manhattan or in Florida.”

Link to audio

King on everything that is wrong with Ted Cruz:

PK: “I’ve only met him once. A lot of people do know him and nobody has anything good to say about him. So we start with that. But just watch what he’s done governmentally. This guy is an empty suit as far as his legislative record. His claim to fame in 2013 was he led the effort to shut down the government, basically telling—how the House Republicans fell for this I’ll never know; I think I was the only one or two [members] who voted against this crazy thing—[House Republicans] that if they shut down the government in the fall of 2013, then he would go to the Senate where he would be able to end Obamacare. … Well, the House votes to shut down the government. It goes to the Senate and Ted Cruz gets up on the floor and speaks for 20-something hours and recites Dr. Seuss on the Senate floor. That was it. That was the extent of his contribution. Our numbers went so low; people were so fed up. The government was shut down for 18 days and … partially the individual human impact it had was a loss of money to the government. The Republicans look crazy as a non-governing party and this was all a stunt by Ted Cruz.

Another example: the following year, in November of 2014, Republicans recaptured the Senate. So, obviously, in January Republicans would have control of the Senate. In December, when it became time for the senators to return, Ted Cruz grandstands. He wanted to be the only man who wasn’t going to go home. He wanted to keep the Senate working. So he objected to the request to have the Senate adjourned, which one senator can do. So he kept them in session for a few more days. He was the hero. He was the hardworking guy. As a result of that, Harry Reid was able to get a large number of Democratic judges confirmed who never would have been confirmed if the Senate had adjourned and the Republicans had taken over in January.

I’ve just given two examples of a guy who is so self-centered, hurts the party, and does no good for anyone in the public. If anything, he helps the Democrats and yet he wants to be president. I don’t know where he comes from. I know he’s smart. There’s a lot of smart guys around there. And when no one works with him, nobody likes the guy, he wants to say it’s because he’s anti-establishment, because he stands up to the leaders. No. That’s not true. They don’t like him because they don’t trust him. They don’t think he’s honest and they think he’s highly self-centered.”

Link to audio

King on whether he would endorse Hillary Clinton over Ted Cruz:

PK: “I wouldn’t endorse Hillary even though I’ve had a good working relationship with her over the years. I am a Republican and I think there’s a certain obligation of party loyalty but also, as John Kennedy said, ‘Sometimes party loyalty demands too much.’ So I wouldn’t endorse Hillary. As far as Cruz, I guess the trite expression is ‘I would jump off that bridge when I come to it.’

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King on why he didn’t run for President, the negative effect of money of our politics, and the chicken and egg dynamic with money and media coverage in legitimizing a campaign:

PK: “The main reason I didn’t run—and I have no reason to believe I would have won or anything like that, but I certainly could’ve been competitive with these guys if I had the money. To be honest with you, I’m not complaining or anything. Unless you have a strong following behind you which is influential and has money … or someone like Bernie Sanders who has a real niche in the Democratic Party to take advantage of this year. You need millions just to get started. People think it’s just your charm, your personality, your wit, your intelligence and all that. The fact is you need troops on the ground. You need paid employees. You need staff to get started, at least in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, somewhat in Florida. You almost have to travel by charter jet after a while … just to make all the different stops. You have the hotel bills for everybody. You have the expenses … the salaries of these people. And again, that would take, I’d say, at least ten or fifteen million dollars upfront to be considered legitimate. … The confusion is that you have the media and commentators saying money is too big and it has become too important in campaigns. But unless you can show you have the money, the media doesn’t pay attention to you. If I could have gotten into the race and the first day opened up a bank account with 10 million dollars in it, I would have been on every Sunday talk show right away.”

Link to audio

King on who he will endorse for President:

PK: “I’ve not spoken to Trump’s people, but I’ve spoken to the Bush and Rubio people and said that really either one of them would be my choice. But I’m going to wait until after Iowa and New Hampshire to see which one of them is standing because with so many candidates in there, to make an endorsement now—first of all, it wouldn’t have much impact in Iowa or New Hampshire anyway—but I’m going to wait and see who is standing after [the first two contests]. It would never be Ted Cruz, I can tell you that. I just think he’s damaging to the party and I don’t think he’s a good person. And to me, he’s just not the type of person that I would want to see as president. As far as Bush and Rubio, it looks like right now Marco is definitely in the lead. … [Rubio is] thoughtful. He knows what he’s talking about and he would be basically in the same wing of the party that I would consider myself in. … Not on every issue. I certainly had differences with him when he voted against the Sandy aid for New York after the terrible hurricane we went through and after all the money we sent to Florida over the years. But, having said that, on national defense, homeland security, issues such as that, I would be much closer to him than to some of the other candidates.”

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King on the Skelos conviction:

PK: “Sometimes the rules change. And I know people can look at the laws differently and all that, but I think probably things went on in Albany over the years that if you gave people a lie detector test at the time they wouldn’t think they were violating the law. And prosecutors can interpret the law a certain way. I mean, you did have Joe Bruno’s case where he was convicted but then his conviction was reversed on appeal and then at a second trial he was acquitted. So, it’s a question of, again, interpretation of the law, but also I think a question of, if you want to call it the culture in Albany, where certain things that were accepted over the years are no longer accepted and people have to realize that.”

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King argues that Albany should cover the local share of Medicaid and the federal government should increase the percentage of New York’s Medicaid bill that it pays:

PK: “New York is the only state in the country, as I understand it, that passes down the Medicaid costs like that [to the counties].”

Bill Samuels: “Exactly.”

PK: “And as far as the formulas in Washington go—back to the days of Pat Moynihan—he made the case that, and you can still make it, that formulas in Washington which on their face may seem fair, actually have a very adverse impact on New York.”

BS: “Yep.”

PK: “I want to go slightly off-topic for a second. Like, for instance, when they cut hospital reimbursements, they say they’re going to cut all teaching hospitals by a certain amount. Well, the large majority of teaching hospitals are in New York City, New York State. So, that’s directed at New York. So what appears to be equivalency is often a discrimination against New York. … As far as the Medicaid, I mean, I was county comptroller for eleven years. The reason that’s so unfair to impose on the local government is the local government has virtually no say.”

BS: “Right.”

PK: “That’s a federal and state mandate which is then passed down to Nassau County. And try to explain that to a Nassau County or a Suffolk County taxpayer that it’s not the county’s fault when that’s included on their bill. I agree with you. It should be re-examined on at levels. In an ideal world, the state portion would be picked up by Albany and also the federal government would pick up a larger share and not pass it on [to New York].”

Link to audio part 1

Link to audio part 2

Political consultant and Newsday columnist Bill O’Reilly

  Link to full interview

O’Reilly on why he supports JCOPE expanding the types of consultants that have to register as lobbyists, but opposes the new regulation mandating lobbyists to report their conversations with editorial boards:

BO: “JCOPE did do a ruling which said that if you are a political consultant, which my shop does, and you then turn around and bring lobbying clients to lobby that same political consultant that you just helped elect, that needs to be reported. And I think that’s absolutely right. I think that was a very good decision. My firm doesn’t do lobbying because we don’t think it’s ethical to lobby our own clients. It just doesn’t feel right, doesn’t pass the smell test. So we think that’s a good decision for JCOPE and they were right there. But to suggest that free speech and conversations between journalists and their sources constitutes lobbying is just madness. And it’s an incredibly dangerous precedent. We don’t see how it possibly stands up to constitutional muster.”

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O’Reilly declares that his consulting firm, The November Team, will refuse to comply with the JCOPE regulation regarding editorial boards and will likely become a plaintiff in a case challenging it that O’Reilly expects would go to the U.S. Supreme Court:

BO: “We will not comply with it. We don’t accept JCOPE’s authority over us. We don’t accept (their) definition of us as lobbyists. To us, JCOPE is a nice entity, but it’s got nothing to do with our business. So we will defy it. If they fine us, we will not pay the fine. We have been contacted by a significant national First Amendment organization that has asked us to be a plaintiff in a case that will go all the way to the Supreme Court. We are now discussing that with them and we should have news on that within a week or so.”

Link to audio

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