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Lou Dobbs Tonight
Obama in Iraq; Red Storm Rising; Renegade Plane; Gunning for Arpaio
Aired April 07, 2009 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LOU DOBBS, HOST: Good evening, everybody.
President Obama making a surprise visit to Baghdad telling our troops their mission isn't yet accomplished and the next year and a half will be critical to the future of Iraq.
A local district attorney going after an international espionage and smuggling ring -- a communist Chinese firm accused of helping Iran try to develop weapons of mass destruction and deceiving banks in this country.
Also tonight the pro-amnesty lobby ethnocentric special interest groups combining and intensifying their national campaign to remove an Arizona County sheriff from office. Tonight we'll tell you why La Raza and other ethnocentric interest groups are attacking Sheriff Joe Arpaio, along with ACORN and the National Action Network, two leaders of the anti-Arpaio movement. The Reverend Al Sharpton and Bertha Lewis, CEO of the left wing activist group ACORN, join me here tonight.
We begin in Iraq, where President Obama made an unannounced visit to Baghdad at the end of what was an eight-day tour of Europe and Turkey. President Obama telling our troops that it's time for the Iraqis to take responsibility for their country, but warning that the next 18 months will be a critical period. President Obama tried to demonstrate that the United States will remain what he called a stalwart partner of Iraq, even as he withdraws most of our troops. Candy Crowley has our report.
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SR. POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In a not announced but not unexpected trip Air Force One took the commander in chief to Iraq to thank U.S. troops and talk of winding down the war, a popular idea at home, and at Camp Victory in Baghdad.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It is time for us to transition to the Iraqis. They need to take responsibility for their country and for their sovereignty.
CROWLEY: The majority of U.S. military personnel will be in Iraq through the December elections. Most will be withdrawn by August of next year, but thousands of American troops will stay in Iraq. Before leaving Turkey, the president was asked where the differences between his policies and those of George Bush. OBAMA: Just because I was opposed at the outset, it doesn't mean that I don't have now responsibilities to make sure that we do things in a responsible fashion.
CROWLEY: So the stop in Baghdad seemed designed not just to thank the troops, but to remind Americans, focus now on an economy in freefall, that the U.S. military mission is not yet accomplished.
OBAMA: You will be critical in terms of us being able to make sure that Iraq is stable, that it is not a safe haven for terrorists, that it is a good neighbor, and a good ally, and we can start bringing our folks home.
CROWLEY: As a candidate ending the war was central to Barack Obama's campaign. As president, it's clear he enjoys far more leeway to do that than President Bush had in the last years of his administration. In a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll, 69 percent of Americans favor the Obama administration's 2010 withdrawal plan, even though 35 to 50,000 troops would remain in place.
Critics come mostly from the left. By a two to one margin those who oppose the withdrawal plan say they want all troops removed. A day before the president's visit a half dozen car bombs killed 37 people in Shiite neighborhoods of Baghdad, underscoring the president's message, Iraq remains a dangerous place of unfinished business.
(on camera): The president also personally delivered his message in a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, the president urged the prime minister to make more political concessions to help stabilize the Iraqi government, another prerequisite to U.S. troop withdrawal.
Candy Crowley, CNN, Washington.
DOBBS: President Obama not remarking on the United States Judeo/Christian heritage while speaking before the Turkish parliament. In a news conference, however, the president praised the United States for standing up for religious diversity. President Obama made his remarks in Ankara yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: We do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation. We consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DOBBS: But the president's remarks emphasizing America's religious diversity unlikely to have much influence at all on Turkey, which is anything but diverse. In fact, all but .2 percent of Turkey's entire population is Muslim. That is of 76 million people only 152,000 people make up the country's rather insignificant minority of Christians and Jews.
President Obama also appears to be having some problem addressing U.S. relations with Europe, even while criticizing previous U.S. policies. President Obama going further than any other president in history with his criticism of the United States, while on foreign soil. Here's what President Obama said during a town hall meeting in Strasbourg, France, over the weekend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: Instead of celebrating your dynamic union and seeking to partner with you to meet common challenges, there have been times where America's shown arrogance, and been dismissive, even derisive.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DOBBS: The president completely ignoring the massive contribution that Americans have made to the security and prosperity of all of Europe over the decades. The United States still has troops in Europe, 20 years after the end of the Cold War and those troops are deployed in 320 installations across Europe, providing a major boost to local economies. More than 80,000 of our troops are in Europe at the same time.
The United States, by the way, has been running huge trade deficits on trade with Europe, more than $9 billion trade deficit with Germany over the past three months of 2008, a deficit of $4 billion with France over the same period, a deficit of almost $2 billion with the United Kingdom in the last quarter of last year -- hardly dismissive or insignificant for our friends in Europe.
The president in calling Iran a great civilization ignored communist China's efforts to help Iran advance its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs. Communist China and Iran have joined in a dangerous alliance and a local New York district attorney, not the FBI, is aggressively prosecuting the conspiracy accusing a Chinese company of setting up front companies in the United States to buy material for Iran's missile and nuclear weapons programs. Kitty Pilgrim has our report.
KITTY PILGRIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Manhattan district attorney, Robert Morgenthau announced a 118-count indictment against a Chinese citizen who remains a fugitive in China. U.S. law enforcement says no picture of the fugitive is available.
The shocker of it is that Lei Fan Wei (ph) and his company, Limit (ph), have been banned by the U.S. Treasury Department from doing business in the United States in 2006. Yet for nearly two years he continued to use U.S. banks to send and receive dozens of illegal payments used to finance materials for Iran's nuclear program. Prosecutors were quick to say the U.S. banks were duped by his fake Chinese shell company.
ROBERT MORGENTHAU, MANHATTAN DISTRICT ATTORNEY: They were completely deceived by the use of multiple aliases. I mean, there were four aliases, front companies for the Iranians, six for the -- for the Chinese company. We do not think that they participated knowingly in these transactions.
PILGRIM: The New York District Attorney's Office stumbled into the plot discovering it during another investigation of Iranian money laundering.
ADAM KAUFMANN, ASST. DISTRICT ATTORNEY: This was simply another aspect of receiving a lead and just chasing it down like we do any white-collar lead economic crimes.
PILGRIM: The U.S. investigation was aided by the Wisconsin Project, a research organization that tracks weapons of mass destruction, its director, Gary Milhollin, wonders why there was no federal investigation.
GARY MILHOLLIN, WISCONSIN NUCLEAR PROJECT: It is surprising that a case of this magnitude for international relations and for our security would come out of basically a local investigation in New York. I think that what that shows is that when it comes to enforcing the law, our international efforts and our federal efforts haven't really been up to snuff.
PILGRIM: It's the Manhattan district attorney who was asking for Lei Fan Wei (ph) to be extradited by the Chinese government.
(on camera): The big question is, did the Chinese government know? After all, Chinese banks were involved in some of these transactions. Chinese companies have long been accused of using shell companies in the United States.
Kitty Pilgrim, CNN, New York.
DOBBS: Communist China tonight also strengthening its ties with another anti-American leader, President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela. Upon his arriving in Beijing Chavez told reporters there will soon be a new world order and it will be led by countries such as China and Japan. Chavez pointedly excluding the United States from his list but the fact remains Venezuela is utterly dependent on the United States for much of its oil exports.
A close ally of Chavez, Fidel Castro of Cuba today meeting with members of the Congressional Black Caucus in Havana, the meeting coming amid speculation the Obama administration may begin talks with Cuba nearly half a century after the U.S. broke off diplomatic relations and introduced sanctions. Obama administration officials say the United States could also lift travel restrictions with Cuba.
No sign of any improvement in relations between Israel and Iran tonight. In fact, Israel conducting what it says was a successful test of its aeromissile defense system. Israeli officials say the aero interceptor hit a simulated Iranian missile. That test comes days after the new Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, warned Israel may attack Iran if the United States does not stop Iran's nuclear weapons program.
Iran has been developing its ballistic missile technology with the help of North Korea for years. North Korea itself has just tested a new ICBM that could eventually be capable of reaching Alaska or Hawaii -- Pyongyang launching that missile in defiance of both the president and the United Nations. North Korea has now released first video of what it says is the launch of the intercontinental ballistic missile Sunday. The United States called the test a failure, but the missile traveled over 2,000 miles, much further than any other North Korean missile and experts say it is persuasive evidence that North Korea has moved from medium missiles to intercontinental missiles.
Up next a former priest in New York accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars from his church to pay for a face-lift and startling new developments in the case of a pilot who flew his light plane from Canada to Missouri, pursued by U.S. jets.
DOBBS: Tonight in Italy crews have rescued a young woman who was trapped for 42 hours in the rubble from that massive earthquake. She was conscious and speaking with her rescuers. An after shock this morning reached a magnitude 5:6. Rescue crews are working throughout searching for more survivors. So far 235 people have been killed, tens of thousands are homeless.
Disturbing information tonight about the deaths of three police officers in Pittsburgh -- the police officers arrived at the scene of a domestic dispute call Saturday. They were shot and killed. We've learned that the 911 dispatcher knew there were weapons in the house, but never gave what could have been potentially life-saving information to those officers. The dispatcher is on administrative leave tonight.
New details about the gunman who killed 13 people in Binghamton, New York, and then killed himself -- Jiverly Wong sent a package to a local news station including a letter, photos and a gun permit. The letter was dated two weeks before the shooting and in it Wong apologizes for his bad English and accuses police among other things of breaking into his room and stealing his money in what is obviously delusional language.
He wrote quote, "I cannot accept my poor life. Cop bring about the shooting. Cop must be responsible, and you have a nice day." Investigators say Wong may have suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. Wong came to the United States from China in the 1980s. He became a U.S. citizen in 1995. He lived in Binghamton most of his life and spent a number of years in California. He was recently fired from his job at The Vacuum Company Shop Vac (ph) and was living with his parents.
Another man on a suicide mission, a student pilot who stole an aircraft in Canada, then flew it into the United States. Questions tonight about the threat he posed and the military response. Brian Todd has our report.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Approaching the United States, a stolen plane from Canada. American fighter jets were scrambled to engage it after it crossed into U.S. air space but the pilot did not respond.
LT. COL. BRUCE FISCHER, WISCONSIN NATIONAL GUARD: My pilots and their fighters would pull up next to them, rock their wings and then they'll fly out in front of him and turn in the direction that they want him to go. At that point in time, hopefully he follows. He didn't follow.
TODD: As the pilot headed over Wisconsin, the Capitol building in Madison was evacuated.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Literally he told everybody to get as far away from the Capitol as you can.
TODD: But the pilot was allowed to continue until he finally ditched on a highway in Missouri after more than six hours and was arrested at a convenience store.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was just sitting there, drinking a Gatorade.
TODD: A Missouri state trooper tells CNN the suspect told them he was depressed and quote, "he hoped to get shot down by our Air Force."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: By stealing the aircraft and flying into U.S. air space, he thought that that would produce his death.
TODD: How close did he come?
FRANCES TOWNSEND, FORMER HOMELAND SECURITY ADVISER: You would never take yourself into a situation to ask for shoot down authority unless you felt pretty certain that this was a dramatic threat.
TODD: A North American Aerospace Defense Command officials tells us the pilot, Adam Leon, was deemed not a threat while he was in the air. The threat level is gauged by a number of factors, says former Homeland Security adviser Fran Townsend, including communication with the pilot, a background check, looking for erratic flying, the size of the plane. A smaller plane is a smaller threat, and whether the plane is heading near any possible targets on the ground.
(on camera): The Pentagon tells us in this case the situation never reached the level of asking Defense Secretary Robert Gates to decide on a possible shoot down.
(voice-over): How quickly did the military respond to a possible terrorist threat? Officials say the jets took off less than 20 minutes after getting the order and intercepted the plane 35 minutes after that.
Brian Todd, CNN, Washington. (END VIDEOTAPE)
DOBBS: A former priest in Staten Island, New York, is accused of stealing money from his church to pay for cosmetic surgery. Reverend William Blasingame (ph) of Saint Paul's Memorial Church is accused of stealing nearly $85,000 over the past three years. He allegedly stole the money allocated for building upkeep and parishioners in need. The priest reportedly lived in squalor, but used the money for personal expenses including that cosmetic surgery and clothing. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison.
In Vermont a landmark ruling, the legislature legalizing same-sex marriage today -- for the first time the House and the Senate in Vermont voted to override a veto by Governor Jim Douglas, a Republican. Vermont the first state to allow civil unions nine years ago -- it is now the fourth state to allow gay marriage following Connecticut, Massachusetts and Iowa. It is the first to do so through its Legislature rather than through the courts.
Straight ahead, where is the new era of transparency we were promised in the wake of the financial meltdown? Trillions of tax dollars loaned to bail out financial institutions. Nobody knows where the money has gone. Some people want to know, and a lot of people insist that they not find out. We'll have that story.
And charges against former Senator Ted Stevens overturned. New charges launched at the entire U.S. Justice Department. That story is next.
DOBBS: A federal judge today dismissed all charges against former Senator Ted Stevens. The judge cited misconduct by federal prosecutors. Judge Emmet Sullivan tonight is calling for a criminal investigation of the prosecutors from the U.S. Justice Department. Three members of the Justice Department so-called Public Integrity Unit are the focus of this new investigation.
William Welch is the interim head of the Public Integrity Unit. Welch was appointed in 2007 by then Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Welch took over the case in October after the judge criticized the government's handling of the case. Brenda Morris, the chief trial lawyer, Morris, an 18-year veteran of the Justice Department, and Nicholas Marsh, who is implicated in several instances of alleged misconduct and concealment of documents.
Marsh handled many of the corruption cases that led to the Stevens' investigation. All six prosecutors including two in Alaska will be investigated for criminal contempt charges. The former senator was defeated when he ran for re-election after he was convicted on those corruption charges.
The Treasury Department has spent nearly $700 billion on banks, automakers and AIG. On top of all of that, the Federal Reserve has loaned and guaranteed trillions of dollars to financial institutions and nobody, and I mean nobody knows which banks received the money and how that money is being used, no one on Capitol Hill, at least. Lisa Sylvester has our report.
LISA SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Federal Reserve has now loaned out money to banks and other financial institutions at a rate of more than $130 billion a day. The total outlay, more than $2 trillion. But no one knows who received the funds, what conditions were placed on those loans and the likelihood Americans will ever see that taxpayer money again.
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I), VERMONT: I cannot imagine anything that is more obvious, more common sense, how can you put $2.2 trillion of taxpayer money at risk and not know who is receiving that money?
SYLVESTER: Senator Bernie Sanders cosponsored an amendment to the Congressional Budget Resolution that calls on the Fed to disclose the loan recipients and what they put up for collateral. The proposal passed 59-39, 20 Republicans and 19 Democrats voting against it. The amendment was part of a non-binding budget resolution, but it's meant to send a message to the Fed and the financial services industry, which has resisted calls for disclosure. Here's why.
SCOTT TALBOTT, FINANCIAL SERVICES ROUNDTABLE: If the average depositor sees that their institution, if their bank is borrowing from the Fed, they might draw the incorrect conclusion that their bank is weak and therefore pull their deposits out.
SYLVESTER: The Federal Reserve typically decides on monetary policy behind closed doors, but a government watchdog group says what's going on now needs to be out in the open.
MICHAEL SMALLBERG, PROJECT ON GOVT. OVERSIGHT: One of the stated goals of the bailout is to increase public and investor confidence, but by withholding some of the most basic information about who is getting these emergency loans, for the Fed is actually undermining its own goal.
SYLVESTER (on camera): A separate Senate amendment called on the Federal Reserve not to disclose the names of the banks but at least to release the terms. That amendment passed 96 to two. But even with that overwhelming but non-binding vote, the Federal Reserve has still declined to release any information.
Lisa Sylvester, CNN, Washington.
DOBBS: Well we'd like to know what you think. Here's tonight's poll question. Which do you think is worse: that we need a law to find out which financial institutions receive taxpayer bailout money or that 39 senators voted against it? Cast your vote at loudobbs.com. We'll have the results here later in the broadcast.
Time now for some of your thoughts; Alex in South Carolina said "Lou, I have a new DREAM Act. I dream that our government will build a fence and uphold our laws and provide us with some real common sense leadership."
And Vicki in Texas said "Lou, please help us save America. I'm fearful of our president and our Congress. Do they have the interests of the American people at heart or their own agenda???"
And Matt in New Jersey, "Lou, I voted because I didn't like how the Republican Party was giving our jobs away. Now I don't like how our country is being given away!"
Send us your thoughts to loudobbs.com and please join me on the radio Monday through Friday for "The Lou Dobbs Show" 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. each afternoon on WOR 710 radio in New York and go to loudobbsradio.com to get the local listings for "The Lou Dobbs Show" in your area.
Up next the pro-amnesty lobby demanding an end to immigration enforcement raids, trying to manipulate, to influence or assure next year's census -- you choose -- and ethnocentric special interests groups trying to remove a county sheriff in Arizona from office. Stay with us. We'll be right back.
ANNOUNCER: This is LOU DOBBS TONIGHT; news, debate and opinion. Here again, America's most powerful independent voice, Lou Dobbs.
DOBBS: Welcome back. Pro-illegal alien open borders advocates are attacking Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona and they're accusing him of racial profiling. The sheriff for himself says he's enforcing U.S. immigration laws. Advocates including Reverend Al Sharpton are accusing the sheriff of civil rights violations. Ines Ferre has our report.
INES FERRE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Reverend Al Sharpton's National Action Network and community organizing group ACORN want the removal of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. He's been enforcing immigration law under authority granted to local officials by a federal program known as 287G, but Sharpton says he's gone too far.
REV. AL SHARPTON, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: Anyone of color is being pulled over and harassed. People are being made to carry their citizenship papers around and that's racial profiling.
FERRE: Arpaio says he's a political scapegoat for those who don't want to enforce the law.
SHERIFF JOE ARPAIO, MARICOPA COUNTY, ARIZONA: We are not racist. We're doing our job. That's how low these people are. They can't solve the problem any other way, so let's get personal. That's what they're saying.
FERRE: Arpaio's office is being investigated by the Justice Department for alleged civil rights abuses at the request of several Democratic lawmakers, none of them from Arizona. Groups wanting tougher action on illegal immigration say special interests are being allowed to politicize the Justice Department.
DAN STEIN, FED. FOR AMER. IMMIG. REFORM: Sheriff Joe is doing the job, his program is constitutional, it's legal, it's effective and it works, and that's why they're opposing it. There are people out there, organizations and others and many of them are closely aligned with the administration that oppose law enforcement, they oppose immigration law enforcement.
FERRE: Maricopa is one of 67 local authorities that take part in the 287G program.
(on camera): The Justice Department said it can't comment on the investigation against Arpaio's office. Lawmakers asked for that investigation on February 13th. The Justice Department announced it on March 11th.
Ines Ferre, CNN, New York.
DOBBS: Joining me now: Reverend Al Sharpton, he is joining with the left wing activist group ACORN in calling for the resignation of Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Joining me now are: the Reverend Sharpton, of the National Action Network -- good to have you with us; ACORN CEO and chief organizer, Bertha Lewis -- Bertha, good to have you with us.
Let's start. This is unusual and this investigation started with a call, Bertha, for an investigation by four Democratic senators -- excuse me -- Congressmen which looks on its face to be politicization of the U.S. Justice Department.
BERTHA LEWIS, CEO, ACORN: It didn't start there. It started two years ago. Sheriff Arpaio has been doing his reign of terror for a very long time.
DOBBS: Did you just say reign of terror?
LEWIS: Absolutely, I mean that.
LEWIS: It's been arresting people simply because of the color of their skin, or their language. You can't tell whether someone is legal or illegal, you know. And he's using 287-G so the outcry that had come up from citizens across Maricopa County forced these Democrats to at least take some action and the Department of Justice has him under investigation.
DOBBS: Reverend Sharpton, as Bertha just said, there are four congressmen who called for this but not a single one of them from the state of Arizona.
REV. AL SHARPTON, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: First of all I think that the reason in that action is that I got involved and there was national (INAUDIBLE) from the NAACP, other civil rights groups on...
SHARPTON: ...La Raza and others is because our members that live in Arizona have raised this. So I don't know whether members of Congress in Arizona have raised it.
I talked to people that were citizens and I think the thing that broke the camel's back was when he started parading people through the streets. I mean he took a group of prisoners, paraded them to the street from one jail to another. I mean this is a bit beyond the pail.
But on top of that, when you get people that are born American citizens saying because of the color of my skin, I'm constantly pulled over, questioned about show my citizenship papers, this is a violation of people's civil rights.
This has nothing to do with anything personal. None of us know the sheriff personally. None of us have -- there's certainly no political agenda in a county in Arizona for many of us that are functioning nationally. But when we are told that you have a sheriff that are pulling people over constantly because of the color of their skin, they become a suspect of being an illegal immigrant, that's a civil rights violation, Lou.
DOBBS: Well, indeed, I think that would be the case if that indeed is true but the issue seems to be one in the community in which he lives, Sheriff Arpaio, that is Maricopa county. He was reelected by an enormous margin. He's been a member of the 287-G Justice Department program, giving him the authority to enforce immigration laws. His office has been investigated -- not investigated but reviewed by the folks who administer the program and nothing found to be a problem.
SHARPTON: As of yet. But as you said we're in the middle of an investigation. We don't know where the investigation will go.
Secondly the prerequisites of not being guilty of doing a violation of civil rights is not if you were reelected. If that was the case many people of civil rights violations just on the basis of they were reelected.
The case is that there's substantial evidence, the chairman of the house judiciary committee, John Conyers and others have also thought there's enough evidence to go forward and investigate. And I think that these issues have to be dealt with independent of your position on immigration.
You and I may not agree on immigration but I don't think you agree that people based on color ought to be pulled over and automatically become a suspect.
DOBBS: I think we'd agree on the latter. You and I would even agree on immigration. It's where you and I disagree is on illegal immigration. SHARPTON: Well, I don't think so. I don't think we do.
LEWIS: None of us.
SHARPTON: You are against amnesty. I'm for sanity. So I think we agree.
DOBBS: You seem to think the two are equivalents and I don't.
SHARPTON: No, I don't at all.
LEWIS: We believe -- I mean ACORN has a lot of members in Arizona. And this -- as I say, this has been going on for two years and also coming together more and more. And we believe that first of all, the 287-G program needs to be suspended and Arpaio needs to resign or be removed right away.
DOBBS: Why would you say that?
LEWIS: He actually is giving law enforcement folks who do the right thing a bad name.
Let me just say this. The federal government's job is to protect our borders and to make sure we have the same immigration program and so therefore...
DOBBS: How are they doing?
LEWIS: ...we cannot have people like Arpaio taking anything that he wants to do and profiling based on people's color. It's not right.
DOBBS: You conflated a number of things. One, that he is indeed racial profiling which he denies which by the way his department denies and over a fifth of his department is Hispanic, by the way. The rest of the statement that's interesting is, I asked you how is the federal government doing, in enforcing border security, and in enforcing U.S. immigration law. And what's ironic about that is, Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of Homeland Security as governor of Arizona was the first person to call for emergency action on the border in her state.
SHARPTON: Well, again, we're confusing two issues. I think what National Action Network and NAACP board joined with ACORN today was on the violation of civil rights. We're not talking about immigration policy, one way or another on that issue.
Arpaio and the misuse of 287-G, we're saying there seems to be a pattern of civil rights violation. That's independent of what...
DOBBS: But you understand my...
SHARPTON: ...Napolitano is doing or anyone else. Secondly, I think that what becomes very important here is that to say that a fifth of his sheriff's department is Latino, you know, when we started making racial profiling a national issue it was on the New Jersey turnpike. A large percentage of their state troopers were Latino and black but we were able to prove in court the late Johnnie Cochran in National Action Network that they were in fact profiling.
One does not disprove the other.
And the point that I'm making with Janet Napolitano as governor calling for emergency action in that state goes to your call to get rid of 287-G, because she, as governor of Arizona herself was saying that there is a national emergency here, that we're not enforcing immigration law at the federal level. We're not securing our border and that it is left to local law enforcement and I'm talking about from Texas to California. And when you call for the elimination of 287-G, that puts a cant, if you will, a bias in your very advocacy because you are opposed to 287-G no matter whether it would be properly administered or whether it were true that as you alleged that it's racial profiling.
LEWIS: It's not being properly administered. There is no oversight. We believe that this experiment needs to end. We believe that Janet Napolitano and the Obama administration need to come up with a comprehensive way to deal with this.
Arpaio and the way that he is going about doing this is not right and that's what we're here to talk about. That's what the focus is, and he blames immigrants of any color and any stripe. It's racial profiling.
It's not good, and Lou, on your show, right here, this man said, "Oh, I don't mind if people call me KKK." That's offensive. He should have resigned right then and there. We don't need a public servant saying that he's proud to be part of the Ku Klux Klan. Come on. He's racially profiling.
DOBBS: That's not it. Bertha, you know better than what you're saying and you should say you're sorry to God, okay.
LEWIS: No. You can play the film, he did it right here on your show.
DOBBS: By the way I remember what he said and he was responding to accusations that he was KKK.
LEWIS: And he said I was proud to be called that. Yes.
SHARPTON: Whether he said it or not...
DOBBS: Are you sorry you said that.
DOBBS: You really should be. I really am embarrassed for you because that is a gross distortion of what the man said and what he meant. And you know it. (CROSS TALK)
SHARPTON: I think that the problem that we all have is that people should not be harassed and there should not be a distortion.
DOBBS: Oh, I don't think there's any doubt of that.
SHARPTON: I think if you're saying that Bertha and ACORN are saying things that Secretary Napolitano didn't say, then I think it dispels the introduction that these are groups that are aligned with the administration because you can't have it both ways.
That's not it. We were introduced as being close to the administration. I think what they're saying is they're challenging the administration on 287-G. What we're saying is that 287-G must be properly defined. If it's too vague, then clearly it needs to be changed so it's not misused.
DOBBS: But you understand that...
SHARPTON: But Arpaio has a pattern here. I don't care what he said on your show or didn't say on your show, I'm concerned about the people being pulled over just because of the color of their skin.
DOBBS: That can be established by fact-finding.
LEWIS: That's right.
DOBBS: And there's no issue of that.
But let's be clear, let's be clear, that there is a skepticism about the judgment here that's being exercised by the Justice Department, because it's a response to a call from four liberal, liberal Democratic congress people.
Every group arrayed here is on the side of amnesty, pro-illegal alien. And I don't think I hear anybody here calling for an experiment in border security and enforcement of U.S. Immigration law. What I hear is a call for an end to 287-G and its enforcement.
LEWIS: And the resignation of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
DOBBS: I think I got that. I think I got that part.
SHARPTON: And I think that there is -- I think you'd acknowledge that there is no monolithic view, even in African-American and Latino communities in immigration.
DOBBS: Do you think we could include white folks there and Asians, too?
SHARPTON: Yes but you're talking about from the civil rights groups.
SHARPTON: Their view -- Bertha and I may disagree on how to deal with the border. All of us agree that people because of the color of their skin should not be stopped. When they do, we ought to deal with it. That was the basis we came on.
DOBBS: I think that anybody who is found guilty of -- found to be racially profiling, absolutely should be charged.
SHARPTON: That's the issue.
DOBBS: That's one of the issues.
The second part is what is the impetus of this investigation? Is it political or is it rooted in civil rights concerns?
SHARPTON: The impetus of our involvement, I speak for the National Action Network and the call today with all of the groups is on civil rights violation. It has nothing to do...
LEWIS: Well, and the impetus is thousands of people being stopped and profiled merely because of the color of their skin. This is a systematic distortion. He's a bully and he needs to go and we need to suspend 287-G.
DOBBS: Have you met the man?
LEWIS: I've met him by his work. Our members in Arizona have been arrested time and time again; African-Americans who have been here for a long time.
DOBBS: What do you suppose would be said about ACORN, you're being investigated in 13 states, for crying out loud.
LEWIS: Oh, I'm glad you brought that up. That's not true. Check the facts. It's not true. You can get on the phone right now, call the Department of Justice.
DOBBS: I didn't say anything about the Justice Department.
LEWIS: ACORN is not being investigated anywhere in any state. You don't have your facts correct. If you're talking about people being prosecuted individuals, we are assisting in their prosecution so ACORN is not under investigation and has not been.
We asked the Justice Department in October, they confirmed it again and again, and you know what? Give them a call.
DOBBS: We will. We'll do it. And I certainly will and I assure you it will be early tomorrow morning. How's that?
LEWIS: That's good.
DOBBS: As always good to have you both here. SHARPTON: Thank you.
DOBBS: Bertha, thank you so much.
LEWIS: Yes, thanks.
DOBBS: Thank you.
Still ahead the politicization of the Justice Department and a push to stop immigration enforcement during the census? How could that affect how seats are allocated in Congress?
And is there an impact of illegal immigration on the number of Congressional seats in states all across the country? Try six in California by itself. We'll be right back.
DOBBS: Joining me now, three of my favorite radio talk show hosts: in Washington, D.C., Sirius XM's Joe Madison -- Joe, good to have you with us.
JOE MADISON, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST, SIRIUS XM: Hi, how are you?
DOBBS: In Philadelphia from WPHD, Dom Giordano -- good to have you with us, Dom -- and here in New York WOR, my colleague Steve Malzberg. Good to see you.
STEVE MALZBERG, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST, WOR: Hey Lou. How are you?
DOBBS: I'm excellent.
Let me turn to first let's start with the surprise visit by the president to Iraq. That was a pretty impressive beginning or end rather to an eight-day whirlwind.
What do you think, Dom? How did he do?
DOM GIORDANO, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST, WPHT, PHILADELPHIA: I think he did fine, Lou. He struck a pretty good tone. I didn't see anything untoward.
I think he did better in Iraq -- I kind of like what he did there better than at other stops where he was on the apology tour.
I don't think he apologized for anything that we've done in Iraq and I thought he set a good tone. We'll provide security but the Iraqis have to step up and urgency is important.
DOBBS: What do you think, Joe?
MADISON: I agree, in large part. It's about the soldiers, the contractors, the people who were there; he is their new commander in chief. And you know, if he hadn't gone to Iraq, I think there would have been a lot of criticisms since Turkey is right next door, at least in the north.
So it was a good move on his part. It really is about those men and women serving there and I think that's the tone that he established.
MALZBERG: Oh, I agree, and I think it was nice to finally see him act like the President of the United States, instead of the appeaser of the world and running for the most likable person in the world.
But I got to tell you, how many Muslims did he offend by standing in what was Saddam Hussein's palace. Oh, how arrogant of him to do that. I'm sure Muslims all over the world were offended today. Did he not take that into consideration? Now he has to apologize all over again, Lou.
He stood in Saddam's old palace. That's an insult. How dare he?
DOBBS: Let's look at his approval rating right now because this is something that's fascinating. This president over the four decades in which these numbers have been posted is showing the largest partisan gap in his approval ratings. His job approval rating among Democrats -- and we can put this up -- is 95 percent; among independents, 67; but Republicans 30 percent.
These are remarkable numbers. It goes not to the fact in my judgment at least, Steve, as to how polarizing a figure he is, but rather how polarized the country is.
MALZBERG: Absolutely. I mean, I am shocked, really at the independent total. I expect it from the Democrats but I would think that most independent-minded people would understand what this man is all about, that this man does not love this country.
That this man is trying to do what Hugo Chavez has done to Venezuela and he's not doing it under the radar. He's being blatant in-your-face about this.
DOBBS: I'm an independent, Dom but we independents no one can speak for us because we're so darned independent. What is your reaction?
GIORDANO: My reaction, Lou, is it's a little bit, there is just people on the one side, there's shock that Obama's been elected president but it's also, it's breath-taking the reach of the federal government when Tim Geithner can set the salaries for people at the lowest level in these bailed out companies. When we hear about health care and what the overreach is going to be there, there are people in the Republican side that are against this on solid principles.
I guess Democrats, though, are in love with the things that have been done so far.
DOBBS: Well, obviously, though, let's go back to independents. Independents are also...
MADISON: Whoa, whoa, whoa, I'm sorry to interrupt.
DOBBS: Wait a minute, don't interrupt, Joe. Let me finish my sentence.
MADISON: Somebody on that set needs to apologize to Obama.
DOBBS: Excuse me, Joe, come on, buddy. We've been pals too long for that.
MADISON: All right. Ok. All right.
DOBBS: I believe the fact that you see 67 percent of independents right now supporting Obama and approving of the job he's doing is significant. I believe that that's -- that's a fairly good reading of what the president is doing. I believe that the high approval rating on the part of the Democrats and that giant disapproval rating on the part of the Republicans speaks more to the polarization within our country.
Now, Joe Madison, speak to whatever you want to.
MADISON: No, I was going to state, you know, I listened in the last segment where the lady from ACORN was told, "You need to apologize to the sheriff."
I just heard someone say that Obama hates America. The reason we have the polls, I agree, there's an ideological difference. Democrats, however, are optimistic. Republicans right now appear to be very pessimistic.
The reality is, in politics, optimism is going...
DOBBS: Well, independents are gushing even more...
MADISON: It's going to win. But I'm saying here, it is absolutely absurd to say that Obama hates the United States of America.
MALZBERG: I never used the word "hate," Joe.
MADISON: What did you say?
What did you say?
DOBBS: We're going to roll the videotape. We're going to be back with our panel in just a moment.
But first, coming up at the top of the hour, "NO BIAS, NO BULL." Roland Martin in for Campbell Brown -- Roland.
ROLAND MARTIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: So quiet in your studio, Lou.
DOBBS: I know. We're a calm group, really. MARTIN: At the top of the hour, with President's Obama's surprise stop in Baghdad to visit U.S. troops. It's his first trip there since taking office. He's been staying on message when it comes to his plan to end America's combat role within two years. But with violence a constant threat, can he achieve his goal?
We'll talk about that issue.
Plus, four states have now given the green light to same-sex marriage. Could more states follow the suit? And will we see a new way of support for a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. That's just ahead.
And we'll look at the politics behind President Obama's search for a church home at the top of the hour -- Lou.
DOBBS: Thanks, Roland. We look forward to it.
We'll be back with our panel in one moment. Stay with us, we're coming back with this group that wants to shed far more light than say fury and sound.
DOBBS: We're back with our panel, Joe Madison, Dom Giordano and Steve Malzberg. Quickly if I may, the North Korean missile launch, despite the president's warnings, despite the United Nations' warning, does the United States look too weak or do we look impotent?
MALZBERG: Absolutely. Obama looked like a fool as he was warning North Korea not to do anything because of repercussions, he's then saying after they launched the missile, "Hey let's get back to those six-party talks."
U.N., they did nothing because his new friends, China and Russia, they blocked any action.
GIORDANO: Hey, Lou. Yes, I think he does look weak. What it underlines I think one of the big stories of the day, is this nuclear threat going through the New York banks today with the Chinese National.
It's a dangerous world out there, and this president has to present an image that he's going to be tougher about these things.
DOBBS: Joe Madison, you get the last word here.
MADISON: I don't want to interrupt my good friend Lou, I'm being patient here. But real quick, let me tell you, the reality is, that thank god that they did catch these folks with this bank. I mean, that's the positive aspect of it. We also have allies in that region that we have to negotiate and discuss with. We just simply can't go in. And the biggest danger to it is, really, not so much the missile going out. It's the selling of the intelligence that put that missile together.
We need cooperation internationally. And I think that's what this president is calling for. That we -- we cannot defeat international terrorism by military alone. It requires international cooperation.
DOBBS: Joe, thank you very much. Dom, thank you. Steve, thank you.
Up next, tonight's poll results and a few more of your thoughts. Or at least one more thought. Stay with us.
DOBBS: Tonight's poll results, 72 percent of you say it is worse than 39 senators voted against the law that would show which financial institutions received taxpayer money than the fact they needed the money.
Time now for some of your thoughts.
Laura in New York, "Did I hear right? Washington is going to make college cheaper for illegal aliens? I already sent President Obama a letter and asked him what Americans have to do to have Washington take care of Americans first."
Larry in Georgia said, "There is corruption at the highest level in the Mexican drug trade. It is centered in Congress and its refusal to defend our borders."
Please send us your thoughts to loudobbs.com. Each of those whose email is read here receives a copy of my book, "Independent's Day".
We thank you for being with us today. "NO BIAS, NO BULL" starts right now. Roland Martin sitting in for Campbell Brown.