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Jaycee Dugard Featured on Cover of `People`; Interview With Barney Frank

Aired October 14, 2009 - 19:00:00   ET


JOY BEHAR, HOST: Jaycee Dugard was out of sight for 18 years. She was kidnapped by a real-life monster, but she`s finally back and recovering from her ordeal.

Plus, I`ll talk to Congressman Barney Frank about why he think s Sunday`s gay rights march was all about the grass.

Plus, joining me in the studio to talk about losing weight McKenzie`s Faith (ph) and her new love, actress Valerie Bertinelli.

All this and so much more tonight.

I want to start tonight by showing you a picture. It`s the cover of "People" magazine. It shows the first picture of Jaycee Dugard since she was freed from captivity as a sex slave.

This poor girl was kidnapped nearly 20 years ago and allegedly held by this low life creep, Phillip Garrido and his wife in a disgusting backyard prison.

Joining me to discuss this unbelievable case is Betsy Gleick, executive editor of "People" magazine and Cooper Lawrence, developmental psychology researcher and radio talk show host.

Ok. Betsy, let me start with you since "People" magazine got the cover of this.


BEHAR: Was the girl, Jaycee, was she worried about doing this at all?

GLEICK: I think this is a very long process. She`s just at the beginning of this process of reuniting with her family. There`s been intense media interest in her and I think she wanted to kind of control her own story a little bit and show the world that she`s ok.

BEHAR: Did "People" magazine pay her to do it?

GLEICK: No, "People" like other news outlets...


GLEIK: ...sometimes pays for photographs, but beyond that I can`t get into the details.

BEHAR: I see. Well, they might have needed the money, the family.

GLEICK: Right.

BEHAR: They could use it.


BEHAR: Before we go to the next thing, some people wonder if Jaycee should have done the spread, but the Dugard family spokesman, spokesperson actually defended the decision on "Good Morning America." Take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why did she decide to let her face be seen now.

ERIKA SHULTE, DUGARD FAMILY`S SPOKESPERSON: Well, she wants to maintain her privacy and certainly not really step into the spotlight. She did want to thank everyone and really let everyone see how happy she is and how -- how much she`s enjoying this and how glad she is to be home.


BEHAR: Cooper, do you think she should have done this?


BEHAR: You don`t?

LAWRENCE: No, I question her decision-making ability to begin with. I think that she`s been victimized enough and I think that the more scrutiny she has to endure, because when you put yourself out in the media people have an opinion about you. And I don`t think that she`s in a position now that she`s ready to hear all that, maybe later on, but this just happened.

BEHAR: Yes, so do you disagree with that?

GLEICK: I think these are beautiful, sensitive pictures, accurately handled. And I think the only opinion anybody can possibly have about her is oh, my God, thank goodness she`s ok.

BEHAR: I know, but don`t you think the media attention hurts the child? I mean, she`s really healing. I think she might want to be private. Her family might want to be private.

GLEICK: I think this was their way -- I mean, we live in this really intense media-saturated world. I think this is their way, as I said before, of controlling it of saying people are going to find me, people are stalking me. People want to take my picture.

Here are the pictures I want to show the world.

LAWRENCE: Over and out.

GLEICK: Yes. All right.

Take a look at the age progression picture of Jaycee that the police compiled next to the real photo from "People" magazine.

Look at that -- that is incredible, I think. You watch these types of things on television on "Law and Order" and they show you somebody`s drawing what he`s going to look like. It`s unbelievable that they were that accurate.

LAWRENCE: Yes, I think the opposite, I think she looks even better now. I can`t believe that those years...

BEHAR: Well...

LAWRENCE: ...of stress didn`t really have an impact on her. She actually looks pretty good. So I see why having the pictures out is a good thing, but psychologically, I don`t think she`s in a position to really put herself out there yet.

BEHAR: Well, was the family hesitant about it at all?

GLEICK: Yes, I mean -- she was rescued about two months ago. This is the very first moment that she has been out there.


GLEICK: ...and she`s barely out there. It is her photographs, these are not her, parading in the street and you know, I think she`s taking it very slowly.

BEHAR: She is?


BEHAR: But do you think that there`s a risk, Cooper, of this young girl, Jaycee actually being angry in her life that she was not rescued by neighbors and the police? I mean, they really were rather ineffective in rescuing this girl all these years.

LAWRENCE: The American Journalist Family Therapy just published a very interesting study about kids who are abducted and then re-introduced to families and they found that there`s more stress in that because they don`t know how to be with this family.

That the trauma they suffered initially, they haven`t really had a chance to snuff (ph) out that trauma and figure out how it affected them. And now they`re being traumatized all over again, so I think the process is a long one and I think she really needs some time to figure it all out and to get over the anger that she will be feeling. It`s inevitable.

BEHAR: She`s got to be furious.

LAWRENCE: Of course.

BEHAR: I mean, anybody -- she`s a human being. She`s got to be furious.

GLEICK: I mean, we don`t know what happened to her during those 18 years. It`s impossible almost to imagine what is going on now.

BEHAR: Well, she had two children with this monstrous guy. I mean, we pretty much know that at this point.

GLEICK: Yes, but beyond that, I mean, she looks remarkably well. We don`t know the details.

LAWRENCE: Well, we don`t know what`s going on inside of her psychologically...

BEHAR: Exactly.

LAWRENCE: ...and think about this. She was abducted and then she had to spend time with the person who abducted her while she was going through the possibly post-traumatic stress with no help other than to stay with the person who did this to her.

So I think there is a lot of anger underneath that needs to come out.

BEHAR: Well, do you think that the parents should go to through therapy also?

LAWRENCE: Have to.

BEHAR: They need family therapy.

LAWRENCE: They have to, I mean, just the guilt alone. I mean, even the dad -- the biological dad who found out later on that he was the father. Think about the guilt he must feel, "If I was in her life, could I have stopped this, could I have protected her?"

So the family does need therapy and actually it would be a good thing if they all went together.


LAWRENCE: Because she needs that support system.

BEHAR: And she needs to be allowed to express that rage in the therapy session, I think.

LAWRENCE: Absolutely.

BEHAR: Now, on "The Today Show," the Dugard family spokesperson said the family is doing very well, listen.


SHULTE: I have seen a family that I think if you didn`t know the circumstances it would just seem like any other family, just, you know, the love between Jaycee and her mother and her sister Shana (ph) who was an infant really when Jaycee was taken and they have just formed a very, very close bond. And to see them all embrace Jaycee`s daughters and the five of them are just very close and comfortable and happy.


BEHAR: Maybe. I mean, they`re happy to have her back, I think. But I think it`s unrealistic to say that everybody is going to stay happy because it`s going to hit the fan very shortly, I think.

LAWRENCE: Right, I mean, it`s just happening now...


LAWRENCE: the research shows that families like this do go through levels of guilt and anger and as they progress, as they develop as a family -- the important thing is that she knows they`re there and they`re a foundation...

BEHAR: Right.

LAWRENCE: So wherever they go through from here until then -- until to point b, you know, it`s a good start.

BEHAR: Well, let`s talk about the two children that this Garrido allegedly fathered while she was in captivity. I understand that they are at normal academic level, these girls.

GLEICK: Apparently they are, yes.

BEHAR: How do you explain that? She was a child herself and she was raising two babies, infants and they actually are at normal academic level. Is it just genetic? They`re just smart kids? Or what happened there, do you think? You don`t know?

GLEICK: We don`t know. But what our story says and what we have been told is that they`re really intellectually curious. They want to learn. They are already receiving some tutoring and you have to imagine that Jaycee herself was like that during the 18 years.

BEHAR: Wow, she could give herself a lot of credit, that kid...

GLEICK: Absolutely.

BEHAR: ...for what she did for those two girls in that situation. It just breaks your heart, doesn`t it?

LAWRENCE: Well, she clearly protected them because if they are reaching all of the developmental milestones, clearly somebody was there to help them along.


LAWRENCE: So it is to her credit.

BEHAR: She`s a good mother.


BEHAR: Sad, but -- sad story. Thanks very much for being here.

We`ll be right back with Congressman Barney Frank.


BEHAR: Health care reform cleared a big hurdle yesterday when the senate finance committee passed the Baucus bill. By the way, Baucus is an old English name meaning no public option.

Joining me now to discuss is Representative Barney Frank, a Democratic representative from Massachusetts and the chairman of the house financial services committee. Congressman, what happened to the public option?

REP. BARNEY FRANK (D) MASSACHUSETTS: Well, I`ve been working mostly on the regulatory reform. And I`m glad to say that we just earlier today finished work on a strong bill that required most of them to go on an exchange and I think that`s a great event.

The problem with the public option is that the senate finance committee is a more conservative committee than the senate as a whole. The committees are not absolute replicas of the whole senate. The public lost in that committee 13-10.

I believe that if you go to the whole senate, there would be a majority. Now, you don`t get to have 60 and that`s the dynamic they`re fighting for. But I think the basic answer to your question is the finance committee is one of the more conservative committees in the Senate, that is, the Democrats there are more conservative. And I think the vote could be different on the floor of the senate.

BEHAR: But at the end of day don`t we need Olympia Snowe`s vote and she has said she would never vote for a public option. So it sounds like you`re not going get it.

FRANK: You`re asking me about an issue in which I have not been as involved in the financial regulation and it`s also the senate and not the house. It`s one of the institutional flaws here is the senate and house don`t interact the way they should.

But she has been talking about some version of it and there`s a twofold thing here, Joy. It is conceivable that some Democrats, for example, would vote to break the filibuster who would then vote against the bill. It`s actually a two-step process. You don`t technically need 60 votes to pass the bill. You need 60 votes to be able to get the vote on the bill so it`s theoretically possible -- it`s possible under the rules -- to get 60 votes to break the filibuster and then pass the bill with 56 or 57 votes.

There may be some Democrats willing to do that who would say, look, I don`t think we should filibuster this to death; I may not like the final bill.

The other issue is this, the house and Nancy Pelosi has been very strong on this. We are very much committed to a public option. Of course, the main argument that the conservatives make against the public option is that people might like it. They`re afraid it would be too popular.

There are these inconsistent arguments. They say everybody will hate it, but then it will become so popular it will swamp everybody else. If they get the high 50s in the Senate and you got a strong house vote, maybe you`ll get it.

BEHAR: I thought that the Republicans were all about competition. Why are they afraid of the public option for the insurance companies? That`s American, that`s capitalism. Why are they scared of it?

FRANK: Because for a lot of American businesses, capitalism is a spectator sport. They like to watch other people engage in it, but they want to sit in the stands and eat a hot dog.

BEHAR: I see. Do you think the negativity about health care reform in general is over now? Has that been pretty much put down, un-American, et cetera?

FRANK: Not entirely. There are still people who are very angry that they`ve lost power. There are people on the right who, frankly, they`re upset about the culture. They`re upset that gay people aren`t being shunned. They`re upset that women are enjoying the right to make decisions about themselves. They`re upset that movies and books they don`t want to see or read are being seen and read by other people and always making them go.

So I think that sort of spills over into this kind of anger. But I do think that some of the wiser conservatives and I think the conservatives made a big mistake morally as well as tactically. I think they thought they were benefiting from the crazies going out venting. And I think they realized that got in the way of the rational arguments that they wanted to try to make.

So I think you will still see some of the negativity, but it won`t be as supported by the Republican apparatus as it was.

BEHAR: Ok. Now, I know you`re for gay rights and all of that, but a lot of gay rights supporters were upset with what you said about the gay rights march this Sunday. Let me play what you said just to remind the viewers.


FRANK: Barack Obama doesn`t need any pressure these things. Secondly, if you do want to pressure Congress I don`t know what standing on the mall a weekend when no member of Congress is in town is going to do. All that`s going to pressure is the grass.


FRANK: Let me put it to you -- I work very hard on these issues, we have just succeeded and I did a lot of hard work at it along with others, my colleagues Tammy Baldwin and Jared Polis, the other openly gay and lesbian people and the leadership of Nancy Pelosi and others, we`re about to have signed by the president the first bill in American history that protects gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people against prejudice in the Hate Crimes Bill.

We had a good hearing on the bill to prevent discrimination in employment including people who are transgender. And I just spoke today to the chairman of that committee about getting that hearing. We`ve had a good hearing getting that marked up.

And early next year we will be moving on "don`t ask don`t tell". I mean this. President Obama is trying. The problem is not President Obama; it`s again getting to the 67 votes. And the only thing I say this to my friends, aren`t you militant?

I think the most successful militant, political, lobbying organization in America is the National Rifle Association. I often disagree with them more often -- almost all the time, but I have to talk about how effective they are.

When was the last time you saw an NRA march? There weren`t people with rifles marching up and down the mall. What they do is...

BEHAR: Why can`t they do both? Why can`t you lobby and march at the same time?

FRANK: Here`s the reason. Because most people have other things to do: they have children, they have jobs and other relationships to worry about. It`s just human nature. People only do a certain amount of effort.

If people do both, it`s fine, but I`m afraid that some people will come to Washington and they`ll march and they think they`ve done it. That`s why I said what I did. Marching isn`t a negative thing, but to the extent that people think that having marched they`ve done something effective, they wouldn`t do what is effective.

And again, the most effective organization -- I mentioned the NRA, let me mention AARP. They don`t have shoo-ins or shuffle-ins or anything else. When the bill is coming up they call us and write us and make us crazy which is what an American citizen ought to do when he or she is trying to influence the legislature.

BEHAR: I guess, the march is also a personal thing. People wanted to get together to show their support for the whole issue and all that.

FRANK: I know that. It`s an emotional release and I`m not opposed to it, except and I do believe human nature being what it is and that`s why I spoke out. I didn`t say it`s a terrible thing...

BEHAR: Right.

FRANK: I said, it wasn`t in and of itself useful. If people march and then in addition to those other thing, then that`s fine.

BEHAR: Thanks very much for coming on the show, Congressman.

FRANK: You`re welcome.

BEHAR: Now I want to turn to Robert Zimmerman, CNN contributor and Democratic strategist.

Let`s start with the health care thing. How big a deal was that yesterday with Olympia Snowe?

ROBERT ZIMMERMAN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: It`s profoundly significant. And I have to give individuals like Congressman Frank who was just with us, enormous credit for the leadership he`s shown on health care, on gay rights and a whole host of issues.

But the Baucus committee vote is really critical. We now have achieved more progress for health care than any administration has in 60 years. Of course, it`s important to remember the Baucus bill represents the floor, if you will. That`s the bottom line proposal.

BEHAR: The floor?

ZIMMERMAN: The floor. In other words, that presents the more conservative proposal.

BEHAR: It does.

ZIMMERMAN: The house side represents the more liberal proposal. And both houses are going have to come together and make very tough negotiations and very tough compromises.

For example, you saw the Baucus bill which does reduce the cost of health care spending and does exclude the public option now being attacked by both the right wing and the left wing.

BEHAR: What does the right wing have against it?

ZIMMERMAN: The right wing -- well, it`s very interesting. First of all, you`ve got to remember, the right wing said we can`t support a public option. So the public option was removed; this compromise of co-op plans was proposed.

BEHAR: Right.

ZIMMERMAN: Which could be voluntarily created by groups or communities or businesses; and then, of course, the Republican conservatives came back and said okay, we can`t support that either. And Senator Grassley who was a leader in the so-called bipartisan movement came home and got some heat from the extreme right wing of the state and then backed away from it.

BEHAR: I see.

ZIMMERMAN: It`s very interesting.

BEHAR: At least we`re past those death panel conversations. I think that we`ve moved -- it seems to have moved.

ZIMMERMAN: I think the dialogue has moved -- it`s moved without the Republicans, which is unfortunate with the exception of an individual like Olympia Snowe.

I think a few others will join, but the important point here on health care is to realize that there will be a bill by the end of this year and you do have -- and it`s...

BEHAR: Just let me change subject before we go. We`re running out of time.


BEHAR: On the gay rights things, on the "don`t ask, don`t tell," isn`t it a fact that Obama or any president can just with the stroke of a pen just put that into effect?

ZIMMERMAN: Absolutely.

BEHAR: So why -- what is he taking his time about.

ZIMMERMAN: And it is time the Obama administration came out of the closet on "don`t ask, don`t tell."

BEHAR: Oh, that`s so great, I love that.

ZIMMERMAN: And issued an executive orders to suspend prosecutions of gay and lesbian soldiers for ...

BEHAR: It`s outrageous, really. Come on, move it on.

ZIMMERMAN: Absolutely.

BEHAR: Ok, Robert, stay right there.

We`ll be right back with the latest dish on the fight between Obama and Fox News.


BEHAR: In the past, President Obama has taken some shots at Fox News and vice versa, but now it seems the administration is escalating the war of words and adding some backup.


ANITA DUNN, WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: The reality of it is that Fox News often operates almost as either the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party. Take their talking points, put them on the air; take their opposition research and put them on the air and that`s fine. But let`s stop pretending they`re a news network the way CNN is.


BEHAR: Not exactly friendly fire. With me now is my pal Robert Zimmerman, CNN contributor and Democratic strategist par excellence.

First, before we go into another clip which I want to show you, is this a war that the Obama administration`s going to win with Fox or not?


BEHAR: It`s not going to win it.

ZIMMERMAN: I understand their frustration, but the best way to -- the best way to beat their right-wing critic is to govern effectively. In fact what they`re doing is elevating the right wing critics by engaging them this way.

BEHAR: Good point.

Glenn Beck brought this argument to a whole new level. Listen to this.


GLENN BECK, FOX NEWS HOST: When they`re done with fox and you decide to speak out on something, the old, first they came for the Jews and I wasn`t Jewish. When they`re done with Fox and talk radio do you really think they`re going leave you alone if you want to ask a tough question?


BEHAR: He`s a weird obsession with the Nazi thing, doesn`t he? He called Obama -- didn`t he call him a...

ZIMMERMAN: He`s a perfect example of why we need health care legislation. We should decrease his medication and get him coverage for it.

BEHAR: That`s right.

ZIMMERMAN: What is so galling about this is that Glenn Beck is trying to exploit one of the greatest tragedies of civilization just to get a sound bite.

BEHAR: How does it hurt Fox News? Do you think he hurts the network?

ZIMMERMAN: You know something? Obviously that`s up to the network to figure that one out. The more important point is, does he contribute to any sort of intelligent, creative part of the discussion? He doesn`t.

BEHAR: I don`t think he wants to. I think he want to be on TV and make a splash and make a lot of money.

ZIMMERMAN: That`s exactly the culprit. It`s anything to get quoted, anything to create a base. And ultimately, if you look at the past election results he`s a perfect example of why the Democrats did so well because the country is rejecting that kind extreme, ignorant type of behavior.

BEHAR: You think the country is rejecting? I hope so.

ZIMMERMAN: Well, look at the fact that Barack Obama got more votes than any Democrat for president since 1964. Look at the Democratic victories in Congress and look at the fact that Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck - - the philosophical leaders of the Republican Party have become an embarrassment to the Republicans and the country.

BEHAR: They don`t really disassociate themselves in the mainstream of the Republican Party.

ZIMMERMAN: It`s really remarkable.

BEHAR: They should say that Glenn Beck needs medication the way you did.

ZIMMERMAN: You know what? It`s remarkable. Lindsay Graham spoke out about it and became national news. He took on Glenn Beck.

The reality is -- and you saw this in the presidential campaign -- Rush Limbaugh was the touchdown. There was a Limbaugh primary and it was the biggest one.

And it`s interesting to note that while he didn`t want John McCain, John McCain became the nominee. And also, when John McCain went out of his way to court Rush Limbaugh for support, McCain`s support dropped dramatically.

BEHAR: That`s interesting. That`s interesting, but who do you think should speak out against them? Give me a Republican.

ZIMMERMAN: Ultimately -- I stand up for my party. When took on General Petraeus with inappropriate ads you saw Democratic leadership stand up and denounce it. The Republican Party has still refused to stand up to Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh.

BEHAR: Or Glenn Buck.

ZIMMERMAN: Or Glenn Buck, that`s true too.

BEHAR: Thank you, Robert. Valerie Bertinelli joins me next.


BEHAR: From there to here, it`s been a long, long road and my next guest has certainly navigated it well. I`m happy to have the author of "Finding it With Me", actress Valerie Bertinelli.


VALERIE BERTINELLI: I think you can get an Emmy for that, seriously. Come on.

BEHAR: You could haven`t been cuter.

BERTINELLI: That`s about it -- that`s all I had.

BEHAR: And I hate to jump to this but I was watching this clip before and I saw Mackenzie was in it also. She was very young. Was that whole thing going with her father before the show?

BERTINELLI: I don`t believe, this is the first season, so I don`t believe that. I don`t think it happened a little bit after when she was 19 or 17. She`s 15 here.

BEHAR: She`s 15 -- that was a shocking story to hear that that happened and I`ve never heard the phrase consensual incest before - this is.


BEHAR: I mean there was one woman before, a few years ago, Katherine Harrison who wrote a book called "the Kiss" where she says she slept with her father as an adult also but that was semi-fictionalized.


BEHAR: This was really strange to hear.

BERTINELLI: Well, I`ve known Mackenzie for obviously a very, very long time, and I`ve known also that she`s been tortured for a very, very long time. I mean you don`t continually year after year treat yourself as badly as she did for no reason. I mean there was something going on and obviously we know now why.

BEHAR: Well it`s so shocking that some people don`t believe her.

BERTINELLI: I don`t get that -- what in the world could she gain from this by saying something so horrific. No. Plus, like I said, I`ve seen her struggle with sobriety for so long. There`s some stuff going on. I think we need to be giving her grace and just, you know, let her be. The thing is she`s doing very good things for incest survivors to.

BEHAR: Well her sisters, half-sister Chynna...


BERTINELLI: She`s too young.

BEHAR: They believe her, though, don`t they?

BERTINELLI: You know, I don`t know. I only talk to Mack. I haven`t seen Chynna in a very - a lot of years, but -- I -- I don`t -- I don`t know why they don`t support her. I don`t.

BEHAR: Well, the -- but, no. Chynna said she believes her.

BERTINELLI: Yes, Chynna does.

BEHAR: It`s Michelle, the -- I guess you call her a stepmother. She says she doesn`t believe her because it`s impossible to be married to John Phillips all those -- that time and to believe he would have done something like that.

BERTINELLI: Well I don`t blame the Mackenzie for -- Michelle was high a lot of those years, too. So -- you can turn a blind eye to a lot of things. I know I turned a blind eye to a lot of things and so --

BEHAR: We`re talking about a lot of drug addicts.


BEHAR: Anyway, let`s move on to you to your diet.

BERTINELLI: Which -- speaking of drug addicts.

BEHAR: You didn`t take diet pills.

BERTINELLI: No, but food is my drug.

BEHAR: You`re Italian. We were talking about this on "the View" today in the bathroom.

BERTINELLI: And you know peeing next to each other. You are a very quiet peeer.

BEHAR: Am I a quiet peeer, I purposely pee quietly.

BERTINELLI: All of a sudden I realized oh, my god, Joy is in there and I couldn`t pee. I have to get it out here. I can`t just sit here. She`s going to be like why isn`t she peeing? I had to pee. So I finally did pee but by then I think you were at the sink. Did you hear me?

BEHAR: No, I did not hear you but you have to get over this because you have to remember the queen of England pees.

BERTINELLI: Oh that`s true. And poos.

BEHAR: And does that too, okay.

BERTINELLI: Or we hope she`s not constipated.

BEHAR: So now you lost,


BEHAR: I don`t know. That could be a descriptive term. You lost 40 pounds on Jenny Craig. I lost 30 pounds on Jenny Craig.

BERTINELLI: Patty says hello, by the way.

BEHAR: Then say hello back to Patty, whoever that is. I don`t remember who she is.


BEHAR: Oh that Patty. Okay, yea I know who she is. But you know, I gained 15 pounds back and I`m trying to lose it again, but I have to be paid to lose weight. If they would pay me again, I would lose that 15 pounds.

BERTINELLI: You hear that? You hear that? Folks over at Jenny? We would make some fun commercials, would we not together?

BEHAR: Yes, we would.

BERTINELLI: That would be fun.

BEHAR: But you looked really great in the bikini shot.

BERTINELLI: Thank you.

BEHAR: Do we have a picture or not? We showed it on "The View" today you were gorgeous. You were skinny minnie. And you worked your --

BERTINELLI: I worked my butt off. Oh, lordy, yup.

BEHAR: So - that was, do you still get in a bikini?

BERTINELLI: I was in a bikini all summer and I was having a ball - it was really fun because I was in the privacy of my backyard. No paparazzi allowed. They didn`t - you know, you don`t want the wrong angle being, you know, hanging out.

BEHAR: Well I mean to take a picture on your bikini is very gutsy.

BERTINELLI: Oh I know but that`s different. They weren`t taken out of my behind, they were taken out of the front of me. You know and I was at a good angle.

BEHAR: Yea but you were tight and you were taut. You must be working out.

BERTINELLI: I worked really hard. I worked really, really, hard. And I`m proud of myself - I set a goal and I accomplished my goal. That is a good feeling for someone who, like me, falls behind on some of the goals that I set for myself. So this was a really -- this was a feel good experience for me. I gave myself a big pat on the back.

BEHAR: Well I think that when you set the goal people have an easier time dieting than keeping it off.

BERTINELLI: That`s the hard -- the maintenance is this whole other animal that is really challenging. For the first time, this is the longest time I`ve ever been in maintenance because I`ve always gain it back. So this is a whole new animal for me. And it`s kind of - it`s an interesting journey. I don`t ever have to gain the 40 pounds back and then have to lose it again, but this is where you get into the nitty-gritty of why I gained so much weight in the first place.

BEHAR: Well what do you think is the reason?

BERTINELLI: God a lot of -

BEHAR: Were you an emotional eater?

BERTINELLI: Oh, all of the time. I still am. I have to really catch myself and watch myself to make sure I don`t fall into that bad habit again.

BEHAR: But I see some people cannot keep it off. Oprah Winfrey up and down, Kirstie Alley, but these girls

BERTINELLI: I`ve been a yo-yo dieter all my life, too. This is the first time it stopped.

BEHAR: But these girls really are in trouble. And they`re on television, and you know, and you think that it would be really easier to really stick your nose to the ground.

BERTINELLI: But you know, it`s really not. It`s not. Because it`s - it`s That`s Kirstie. We`re all - all the same when it comes to this. It`s a challenge for all of us and it`s really not just about will power. It`s about finding out why your life was so chaotic that it manifested itself in being overweight and that`s what I`m trying to find. And it`s different every day. The stresses are different. The emotions are different.

BEHAR: Well do you eat from depression? Some people eat because they`re happy, some people eat because they`re sad, some people just eat.

BERTINELLI: That`s me.

BEHAR: Or all the above.

BERTINELLI: All of it. I`m Italian. I mean I grew up on food. I mean from the littlest memory I have of watching my grandmother cook in the basement of my aunt Adeline`s house and my uncle Dino`s house. And my mom cooked three meals a day.

BEHAR: Did you live in the basement?

BERTINELLI: Hello? You`re Italian? No?

BEHAR: I know.

BERTINELLI: Did you know have a basement kitchen? Everyone had a basement kitchen. Yeah.

BEHAR: I know, but the thing is when you come from a background like ours the food is good so you just keep eating it.


BERTINELLI: I wasn`t happy when I was young, young, young. You ate, but you ate three meals and you went out and played and you were outside all day and when it got dark you went back for dinner and dinner was done, the kitchen was closed and you went to bed and the day started -- it wasn`t all of this nibbling and noshing and eating in front of the television and being unconscious when you eat.

BEHAR: That`s true so if you work out you lose weight, right?

BERTINELLI: You move your body, yea.

BEHAR: But I mean also when you get over 35 it`s harder because your metabolism slows down. And I mean that`s just a fact.

BERTINELLI: It is, it is. So you have to work harder.

BEHAR: Let`s look at this; Jessica Simpson`s weight issues have been very public.

BERTINELLI: She has doesn`t have a weight issue?

BEHAR: Do we have a clip from FOX somewhere, let see this.


UNIDENTIFIED: Man, I still can`t believe Tony dated Jessica Simpson. Even after she blew up bigger than Flozell Adams.




BEHAR: How brutal can the media be about press and these people making fun of Jessica. The poor girl, I mean, she put on maybe -- she doesn`t even look heavy to me.

BERTINELLI: Maybe five pounds?

BEHAR: And they`re all over her.

BERTINELLI: I don`t get it. She`s a very beautiful young woman, and by the way, I guess all that thing about Tony Romo not being good when he was with her, well, you still suck. Can I say that? He`s not having a very good season so far, so you can`t blame it on Jessica anymore.

BEHAR: The girls are sticking together.

BERTINELLI: Sorry, I`m a Saints fan. We`re having a great time so far. 4-0.

BEHAR: I`m so bad.

BERTINELLI: The New Orleans Saints are playing the Giants this weekend and I`m a little scared because we`re both 4-0 and 5-0

BEHAR: In New York?

BERTINELLI: I don`t know if they`re playing in New York or New Orleans. I know I`m not going to be at the game.

BEHAR: The giants aren`t from New York, aren`t they?

BERTINELLI: They`re New York Giants. Seriously.

BEHAR: I`m terrible. So -

BERTINELLI: I`m feeling so terrible right now. Really Tony Romo, you must be a nice guy, I guess you are - but --you

BEHAR: It`s fine don`t worry about him. He`s not watching the show anyway.

BERTINELLI: Yea he doesn`t care. I wouldn`t care if I were him.

BEHAR: In your book I want to talk more about the book because you have other stuff about your marriage and how weird it was, I love that stuff. So I`ll be back.

BERTINELLI: That was a long time ago.

BEHAR: I know, but it is so current in my mind right now because I have the book.


BEHAR: I`ll be back with Valerie Bertinelli in just a minute.


BEHAR: Okay. I`m back with Valerie Bertinelli. Okay, let`s talk about your new book "Finding it."


BEHAR: What did you find, first of all?

BERTINELLI: I`m still finding it.

BEHAR: What`s it?

BERTINELLI: Exactly. I`m just - that whole weird thing about maintenance and finding what caused me to put the weight on, what`s going to -- what I`m going to find to help me keep it off, just finding it in my weird, bizarre life which isn`t probably so weird because a lot of people I think have the same stories going on.

BEHAR: Oh yea. It`s highly relatable , are you kidding me? But you also talked about your marriage to Eddie van Halen who is a rock star and a cute guy and everything. And how long was that marriage?

BERTINELLI: Well, I think we were married for 20 years, but we were separated for some of it, so I don`t know, let`s say, I`ve known him for almost 30 years.

BEHAR: I can`t believe it was that long. I was just looking at you as a little girl.

BERTINELLI: August of 1980, we met.

BEHAR: Time goes by so fast. I mean it was just yesterday Monica Lewinsky was just a little girl under the desk.

BERTINELLI: I just want to know why she didn`t clean the frickin` dress. You know really, are you disgusting or what? Clean the dress.


BERTINELLI: Golly. I mean, I send my clothes to be cleaned if they get dirty.

BEHAR: Is it because she`s loony tunes.

BERTINELLI: Disgusting.

BEHAR: But let us - let me ask you something, there was a little bit of a discussion about extra marital affairs in this book which usually is the reason people break up. That`s it. This other baloney -- I have to find myself, I need my space. That`s a bunch of baloney. Someone is waiting in the wings. What happened there?

BERTINELLI: Well, I think by the time you start having affairs something is obviously quite broken in the marriage. Obviously something was quite broken in our marriage early on, but we kept up the good fight and we didn`t quite make it.

BEHAR: But who was cheating on who?

BERTINELLI: You know? Do you have to know who? Where? When? What? Why? We have a little thing going. Ed thinks I did first, and I`m thinking he did first, but we don`t know about the timing.

BEHAR: But it`s interesting. It`s almost like the conversation about why we eat. People stray in a relationship for an emotional reason.

BERTINELLI: Because you`re not being fulfilled in whatever relationship you`re in.

BEHAR: Either that or you`re a horny dog.

BERTINELLI: Yea that too or either that or you`re in your 20s you know.

BEHAR: I mean I`ll refer you to Governor Spitzer, for example, and some of these other dogs that we keep reading about, you know.


BEHAR: They`re out there just hounding it up, but I think that with women - it seems like there`s an emotional --

BERTINELLI: We know how to hound it up once in a while, too, unfortunately.

BEHAR: But we have usually a reason, it`s not just --

BERTINELLI: Oh so we`re given a get out of jail free card? No, no, no, no.

BEHAR: You think that women cheat in the same way men cheat?

BERTINELLI: I think cheating is cheating and it`s wrong and you shouldn`t do it. And I can speak from experience from having been cheated on and having had cheated. And I got to say that I think the feeling, it feels worse for me to have cheated on because that feeling of the pain that I inflicted on somebody, I don`t ever want to do again. The good thing is that now I`m in a relationship that I know I don`t want to hurt that man ever like that.

BEHAR: You`ve learned.

BERTINELLI: Yes. I`ve learned my lesson. Monogamy is in my life. And if I think I can`t be monogamous with this man, which I really seriously doubt, because he`s really -- OK, I`m not going to go there.

BEHAR: He`s good in bed.

BERTINELLI: But he`s really good in bed.

BEHAR: Is he really? Better than Van Halen was? You don`t have to answer that.

BERTINELLI: What time is this show on? Oh, my god, my parents are watching this! Oh, I`m sorry, pops! I love you. Hi, mom.

BEHAR: You should hear this.

BERTINELLI: I`m still a virgin, right?

BEHAR: Well, you`re like a virgin, let`s put it that way.

BERTINELLI: Right, but I had a child 18 years ago.

BEHAR: But what was I saying?

BERTINELLI: I don`t know. Let`s go get a drink.

BEHAR: The thing about monogamy when you`re younger, like under 40, is that monogamy is monotonous is really the truth.

BERTINELLI: Well I guess it depends on who you`re being monogamous with.

BEHAR: Well, it is difficult to stay monogamous when you`re younger, I think.

BERTINELLI: Oh, absolutely.

BEHAR: You`re still on your own. You`re still finding it, whatever that it may be.

BEHAR: So that`s the real reason.

BERTINELLI: That`s why I think getting married at 20 was really stupid and I don`t suggest anybody do that. I think more mature love that I`m going through right now -- I`m with my buddy. I really, I enjoy his company. He`s my best friend. I don`t want to hurt him.

BEHAR: First of all, you named your son Wolfgang.


BEHAR: William.


BEHAR: Van Halen. You left out the Bertinelli, fortunately for him. I mean, this could take a year to say his name. But you really named him after Mozart, didn`t you?

BERTINELLI: Amadeus, yeah.

BEHAR: Were you lying in bed very post-orgasmic one night and said, listening to Mozart, and said, Wolfgang, that`s really the name for this kid.

BERTINELLI: No, I loved the movie "Amadeus."

BEHAR: It`s a great movie.

BERTINELLI: And I loved the way Elizabeth Berridge says, "Wolfie, Wolfie," and I thought, thought that sounds really cute and trying to come up with a name that goes with Van Halen wasn`t real easy. His father`s name was Jan, but it`s spelled J-A-N, so I didn`t want Wolfie, if he was going to be a boy to be called Jan because I just didn`t think that would cut in America.

BEHAR: How about Robert Van Halen? That works.


BEHAR: No. Tom Van Halen?


BEHAR: Frank? How about Salvatore?

BERTINELLI: Salvatore, yeah, Mazerino Van Halen.

BEHAR: I think Wolfgang really determines that the kid had to be in the business with your husband now. He is, right?

BERTINELLI: He got his dad`s gift. He`s very lucky he got his dad`s gift and not mine.

BEHAR: Why, you have a gift.

BERTINELLI: A vomit mouth?

BEHAR: What instrument does he play?

BERTINELLI: He started on the drums when he was nine and then he picked up the guitar when he was 12 or 11 and then his dad asked him to start playing the bass and he started playing the bass.

BEHAR: He`s talented.

BERTINELLI: He`s very talented. He`s got a beautiful singing voice - - on oh, there`s my boy.

BEHAR: Which one is he?

BERTINELLI: He`s that one.

BEHAR: Oh, he`s a cutie pie. Very cute.

BERTINELLI: A big boy. And he is now teaching himself the piano. And he kicks ass in rock band.

BEHAR: Really? Does he sing too?

BERTINELLI: Yes, he does, yeah.

BEHAR: And what was that whole thing today about him being a virgin? You think he`s a virgin.

BERTINELLI: Really, seriously? You want to talk about that?

BEHAR: It`s funny to me.

BERTINELLI: I just got a text from my son, too. He said, we`re watching "The View" now. And I got it a couple of hours later I said, "are you still speaking to me?"

BEHAR: But you were teasing about it.

BERTINELLI: I was. I was.

BEHAR: He`s now 18-years-old.

BERTINELLI: He`s 18-years-old. So he`s a virgin, right?

BEHAR: Yes, whatever. He might be, he might now, but that`s none of your business.

BERTINELLI: It`s none of my business. As long as if he`s not -- he`s protected. I don`t want to talk about it.

BEHAR: All right, never mind. This happened today also and you didn`t want to talk about it, but is it in here in the book?

BERTINELLI: Well, I talk about the sex talk and the sex talk that Ed had with Wolfie.

BEHAR: Oh yeah, that you were listening to.

BERTINELLI: Well, yeah because it was on the road and we were listening in the dressing room and I could hear Ed talking and if you`ve ever met my husband or ex-husband, he has a scrabbly voice, and it sounds like he`s in the mafia. He just has this gravely voice and he`s saying be careful with what you do with your heart and protect it. But once you fall in love, don`t protect it so much that you don`t let anybody in and protect her heart and treat with her kindness. And I`m like, that`s all the stuff that I would say.

BEHAR: That`s beautiful.

BERTINELLI: And then he says be careful of the skanks and whores and bitches that are going to want to date you because you`re in a rock band and your last name is Van Halen.

BEHAR: Well he should know.

BERTINELLI: I wouldn`t have put it exactly that way, but it`s good information for him to have.


BERTINELLI: Because I`ve ran into some skanks and whores in my lifetime.

BEHAR: I bet you have.


BEHAR: But so you`re happy with the way he spoke to your son.

BERTINELLI: I am. You know what I may joke around, but he`s a really good dad.

BEHAR: Are you friends with Eddie now?

BERTINELLI: I don`t know -- we`re friendly. I don`t know that I would ever call him my friend or buddy the way Tom is my buddy, but I like him again. And I fell out of like with him a long time. I have always loved him, but I like him again. I like his new wife. They`re good people.

BEHAR: Oh, he got married again too?

BERTINELLI: Yeah. I was at the wedding.

BEHAR: Oh, that`s so nice.

BERTINELLI: Yeah. So was Tom. Tom was with me.

BEHAR: You know, once you have a child, you`re never really separated 100 percent from your husband.

BERTINELLI: No, so you must treat each other with kindness and you must love your children more than you hate your ex. You`ve got to just figure out a way.

BEHAR: OK, I`m not letting you go yet. This woman isn`t going anywhere. More with Valerie Bertinelli when we return.

BERTINELLI: Because I won`t shut up.

BEHAR: We have many more things to discuss.


BEHAR: Valerie Bertinelli and her boyfriend Tom Vitale are sitting across from me.

BERTINELLI: Roped him in.

BEHAR: We`ve been discussing Valerie`s new book "Finding It" and a lot more. Welcome to the show, Tom.


BEHAR: We dragged you in here from the green room.

VITALE: Pleasure to be here.

BEHAR: Now you two are an item for how long?

VITALE: Five years.

BERTINELLI: Five years next week.

BEHAR: So you`ve been dating for five years. Are there wedding plans?

BERTINELLI: I`m living in sin.

BEHAR: I know, me too, for 27 years.

BERTINELLI: What did you call him the other day?

BEHAR: A spousal equivalent.

BERTINELLI: I love that, you`re my spousal equivalent, honey, because I don`t want to do the seating chart.

BEHAR: You`re not going to get married?

BERTINELLI: I don`t want to do the seating chart. Everyone gets mad at you because no one wants to be at table 17, I don`t know why.

BEHAR: How about you? Do you want to get married, Tom?

VITALE: I don`t know. She hasn`t asked me yet.

BEHAR: If she asked you, you would say yes?

VITALE: I might.

BERTINELLI: Will you marry me? I didn`t say that.

BEHAR: Where did you two meet?

BERTINELLI: At my brother`s house in Scottsdale, Arizona. My brother Patrick and his wife, Stacey. We were going to a wine event and I keep my wine in the freezer, especially in Scottsdale where it`s hot as all get out.

BEHAR: In the freezer? What you couldn`t have gotten ice cubes?

BERTINELLI: No, but you get it out before it gets too cold. I know, I bruise my wine all the time, but that`s the way I like it. So I take it out before it gets too frozen. And he was in front of the freezer and I saw this guy in a tux that was like, looked like that.

VITALE: It was a black tie event. We had a good time.

BERTINELLI: I said, hello, I`m Valerie, and you are? Like, uh, Tom.

BEHAR: So what did you think of a big star like her coming on to you, Tom?

VITALE: Yes, you know, it was difficult. I had to get used to it.

BEHAR: Did you --

VITALE: I just plowed her with champagne.


VITALE: To be honest with you.

BERTINELLI: He did. At the event -- every time my champagne glass would like go down to here, I`d have another one in my hand. I was like...what the? That was before Jenny Craig.

BEHAR: Oh, he met you and fell in love with you before you lost the weight?

BERTINELLI: When I was big.

BEHAR: I love that. See, that`s a keeper.

BERTINELLI: Yes, he`s a keeper.

BEHAR: That`s a keeper.

VITALE: I was big, too. I was 220.

BERTINELLI: Yes, he lost a lot weight too on the program.

BEHAR: Yes, but for a man, it doesn`t have the same effect.

BERTINELLI: He could --

BEHAR: They always criticize the women.

BERTINELLI: Remember how big your belly wasn`t? Look, it`s not as big anymore.

BERTINELLI: Oh, the old bonzone.

VITALE: That`s good.

BEHAR: It`s really something. You know, we had a couple of e-mails from you. Questions for you from e-mail.

BERTINELLI: What? Sure, what are they saying?

BEHAR: There was a question from...

BERTINELLI: You can read that without glasses?

BEHAR: Yeah.

BERTINELLI: How old are you?

BEHAR: I`m older than you, believe me.

BERTINELLI: How come your eyes are focusing?

BEHAR: Check with "People" magazine, they print it every month.

BERTINELLI: Yes, but if they didn`t print your birthday, wouldn`t you be offended?

BEHAR: No, I would not. But they do like, Lassie, 12. I mean, they`re ridiculous.

BERTINELLI: Which Lassie?

BEHAR: So this woman, Janice Pasir Schmisnik (ph).

BERTINELLI: Italian name, huh?

BEHAR: She writes, "I am on a very low-calorie program now and I`m worried about when I get back to real food. How did you handle that and are you still on Jenny Craig?

BERTINELLI: Yes, I`m still on Jenny Craig. And this is the whole thing. She has to turn her head around because if it`s a super low -- I don`t know how much weight she has to lose but maybe she`s on a too low of a program. But as you start to -- on Jenny, as you start to incorporate other food into your program and as you get to a maintenance level, you can up your calorie count. But you don`t up it to a point to where you go back to your bad behavior.

BEHAR: But you`re off of the food that they package for you at that point?

BERTINELLI: No, I still eat it. I really like it.

BEHAR: Oh, you still do. But not 100 percent?

BERTINELLI: No. Some days I do eat it 100 percent though. I`ll just want to have a nice, clean day and know what`s going into my body and I`ll just do Jenny and my two snacks all day.

BEHAR: You know Valerie, I just love you. I think you are just adorable. You are my kind of girl.

BERTINELLI: Yes, you are my kind of gal.

BEHAR: And I just love you. Tom, too, I think you`re just a wonderful little couple. I love it. Thanks to Valerie and Tom and all my guests for joining me tonight. And thank you for watching. Good night, everybody.

BERTINELLI: I love your show. It`s so good, it really is.