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CNN Larry King Live

Interview with Jenna Bush; Interview With Whoopi Goldberg

Aired October 02, 2007 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, the ultimate White House insider -- first daughter Jenna Bush. She's flown under the media radar most of the time. Now she's standing up and speaking out. The presidential kid who's not big on politics -- a wife-to-be who could have a Rose Garden wedding and a first time author.
And then, Whoopi Goldberg's got a brand new gig.


WHOOPI GOLDBERG, COMEDIAN: Welcome. Welcome to "The View," you all.


KING: Can "The View's" latest moderator play it cool in the hot seat that used to be Rosie's?

Candid, comic, controversial -- Whoopi weighs in next on LARRY KING LIVE.

A great pleasure to welcome to LARRY KING LIVE Jenna Bush, the author of "Ana's Story: A Journey of Hope". There you see its cover.

She's the daughter of President George W. Bush and Laura Bush, fiance of Henry Hager. Congratulations on the engagement.

JENNA BUSH: Thank you very much.

KING: We will, in a little while, discuss this book.

But first, let's see the ring.


KING: All right, folks, a first -- the ring. We can get that on camera.

J. BUSH: He did a very good job.

KING: He picked it out?

J. BUSH: Yes. It's his great grandmother's. He reset his great grandmother's diamond.

KING: Wow!

J. BUSH: I know.

KING: How did you meet?

J. BUSH: We met in Washington. He was working in Washington and I was working in Washington. And we met through some mutual friends. And right away I just thought he was cute and nice, and a really good guy.

KING: Were you doing UNICEF work at this point?

J. BUSH: No, I was teaching in Washington, D.C. And, actually, we met and were friends while I worked on my dad's campaign.

KING: What was it like when he met your parents?

Where did he meet them the first time?

J. BUSH: Well, I guess I probably brought him over to -- I can't really remember exactly, but I probably brought him over to my parent's house or...

KING: The White House?

J. BUSH: Yes, the White House.

KING: Come on over to the house.

J. BUSH: Yes, come on over.

I'm sure -- actually, no. The first time we went on a date my parents were gone. So he picked me up and my dad's helicopter -- or the helicopter was landing. And he got very nervous and very anxious . And I thought we'd better get out of here fast.

KING: How did it go between your parents and him?

J. BUSH: Well, he's a really, you know, he's an easy guy to like. All my friends adore him. And my parents think he's great. And he's a great athlete. He can ride bikes with my dad, and not many people can do that. So that impressed my father right away.

KING: So they approved?

J. BUSH: They approved, enough to let him marry me.

KING: How about you and his parents?

J. BUSH: They're great, too. They're the most lovely people in the entire world. And I hope they approve of me. They have no other choice, I guess, now.

KING: Do the both-in-laws get along?

J. BUSH: They do. I mean they don't know each other very well, but my parents respect his parents a great deal.

KING: How did the toughest person for approval of all, Barbara Bush, handle this?

J. BUSH: Oh, I thought you were going to say Barbara Bush, my sister, because she's pretty tough.



I would ask Barbara Bush, your grandmother.

J. BUSH: Yes. She's thinks he's really great, too. I mean she thinks he's -- he's come up to Maine a couple of times and they've gone and played golf. And he thinks she has a great sense of humor.

KING: Any chance of a White House wedding?

J. BUSH: I don't know. Right now, I'm focused on the book and I'm about to travel to 26 states in the United States and so...

KING: The tour is beginning.

J. BUSH: The tour is beginning. And so after, you know, after the tour, in January, I think we'll sit down and sort of see where everything is.

KING: Is there a chance?

Is there a feeling that you might...

J. BUSH: Yes, there's always a chance.

KING: The last one, I guess, was Julie Nixon, right?

J. BUSH: Yes. Yes, always there's a chance.

KING: What's the pros and cons?

J. BUSH: Well, I, you know, I think the White House is a very fancy place for glamorous people. And I'm not sure. I think I'm more a place -- a person that likes to sit down to Mexican food with friends. And so I'm not sure if it's perfectly suited. But it's a beautiful, historical place and I obviously appreciate its historic value very much. And so that's the pro.

I think my dad would say the pro is that he wouldn't have to get a tent. Tents are (INAUDIBLE)...

KING: What does your mom think?

J. BUSH: You know, she just wants us to be happy. They got married in a very small ceremony and had 70 people. And so they think all of the big Texas weddings are just sort of ridiculous.

KING: So can you say maybe, Jenna, you are leaning one way.

J. BUSH: Not -- I'm leaning toward "Ana's Story". KING: What does Henry think?

J. BUSH: He doesn't know what to think. He's, you know, he's just -- he's in school and he's trying to get through his last year and...

KING: So you don't have a date?

J. BUSH: No date. I know. I'm not the perfect bride after all.

KING: Do you want a lot of children?

J. BUSH: One day I would love to have a couple children. I know how much of a handful Barbara and I were as little girls -- what, two at a time.

KING: Because you might have twins.

J. BUSH: That would be great.

KING: I mean it runs in the family, right?

J. BUSH: Yes, it runs in the family. It would be fun, I think. Hopefully, twin boys and not bad, little girls like us.

KING: How is your father?

How is -- everybody, every person who is a president ages in office. And he shows it, too.

Does he show it to you?

Does it look like he's not like he was five, six years ago?

J. BUSH: I mean, he's still my father, obviously, and I still see him as my dad. And I love him very much. But, yes, he's aged, for sure.

KING: How does he -- how do you handle criticism of him?

Your grandfather, George Bush -- George H.W. Bush -- says that when his son is criticized, it was worse than when he was criticized.

J. BUSH: Yes, it's hard to see. I mean it's hard to see him criticized. We try not to watch. I think my grandmother would say this, too, and he would say this -- too much television where we know he'll be criticized. And we try not to read things where I know he'll be criticized.

But I know who he is and I adore him for who he is. And so when I hear the things that are said about him that I know aren't true, I just put those away to...

KING: Does it drive you a little crazy at all?

J. BUSH: Yes, it's hard to hear, because I know who he is.

KING: There has to be times when you disagree, any daughter with a father?

J. BUSH: Um-hmm.

KING: How do you deal with that?

J. BUSH: Well, we have dialogue like any daughter and father would. I mean he, of course, that's one of the things that I, you know, I love about him is he's allowed Barbara and I to have other own opinions about everything from weddings to books to anything. But, you know, those are conversations we have in the privacy of our own home. And it's -- it's great that he's allowed us to grow up and be who we are and follow our own passions. He's never pushed us to be somebody that he would hope us to be.

KING: We were discussing -- and we'll take a break in a minute then discuss the book -- we were discussing what your father might do after the White House. He'll still be a very young man and we brought up the idea of commissioner of baseball.

J. BUSH: That would be great.

KING: He would go for that?

J. BUSH: Yes, dad, would go for that if he's watching.

KING: Yes.

J. BUSH: Yes.

KING: Good job.

J. BUSH: Yes, it would be a great job.

KING: It beats work.

J. BUSH: Yes.

KING: And we both love the sport, right?

J. BUSH: Yes. Exactly.

KING: Our guest is Jenna Bush.

The book is "Ana's Story".

More to come from her and discussions about her dad.

As we go to break, if Jenna does get hitched at the White House, she would hardly be the first.



KING (voice-over): White House weddings are nothing new. There have been about 30 of them. But when Grover Cleveland married Francis Folsom in 1886, it was, and remains, the only time a sitting president was wed at the White House.

In 1906, Teddy Roosevelt's headline grabbing wild child, Alice Roosevelt, wed Congressman Nicholas Longworth. It was the social event of the year.

So was Lynda Johnson's White House wedding in '67. She married Chuck Robb, who would go on to be a U.S. Senator.

And in '71 Trisha Nixon married presidential aide Eddie Cox in the first White House ceremony outdoors.

Is another White House wedding in the works?



KING: We're back with Jenna Bush.

By the way, I said Julie Eisenhower -- Julie Nixon Eisenhower was married in the White House. It was Trisha who was married in the White House, and I had to correct myself.

Jenna Bush.

The book is "Ana's Story: A Journey of Hope".

Now, we're going to begin by introducing us to Ana by having Jenna read from the book, and then we'll ask some questions.

J. BUSH: "By the time Ana was in the sixth grade, she had three secrets. And, as all secrets do, one protected another. Ana didn't talk about her sister's death because she didn't want to reveal that her sister most likely died of AIDS. She didn't want to talk about her sister's AIDS because she didn't want to reveal that her mother died of AIDS, as well. She didn't want to talk about her mother's AIDS because she didn't want to reveal that she herself had been born with HIV.

Ana kept quiet because she was told to. She didn't want to be alienated or treated differently."

KING: Why does Ana have one "N?"

J. BUSH: Ana has one "N" because it's a Spanish name. She's from Latin America, so it's not the typical Anna that we have here.

KING: Why did you choose such a tough area as HIV?

J. BUSH: Yes. Well, I chose, you know, a person. And my job for UNICEF was to meet with kids who were living with an exclusion and write their stories. And when I met Ana...

KING: You knew Ana?

J. BUSH: Yes, I met -- oh, yes. KING: There is Ana?

J. BUSH: Yes, it's a narrative nonfiction. So it's based on her life. And when I met her, I was just so struck -- and all of the kids I met with -- with, you know, the fact even though they've lived these very difficult lives, they live with such optimism. So I -- when he met Ana, I thought, gosh, there should be something more than just my, you know, the UNICEF project that I was doing for fundraising. And that's when the book was organically born.

KING: So it is not a novel?

J. BUSH: It's not a novel. It's narrative nonfiction.

KING: How is Ana doing?

J. BUSH: Ana's doing great. She's doing very well. I had spoke with her a couple of weeks ago. It's obviously -- Ana is not her real name, because UNICEF and I, obviously, as the person, have the responsibility to protect kids living with HIV. And, unfortunately, kids in Latin America who live with HIV face much discrimination and can be kicked out of school, can be hurt, can be treated differently. And so it's our responsibility to keep her safe.

KING: What took you to UNICEF?

J. BUSH: Well, I worked in a school in Washington, D.C. and many of my students emigrated from this region from Latin America. And I was so driven to this part of the world by their talking about their cultures and their countries. And UNICEF was just a natural organization -- I mean a perfect choice, because they work in more than 150 countries and they do such incredible things.

KING: What did you do?

J. BUSH: Well, I was an intern in the educational policy department. And I wrote these kids' stories. I met with kids like Ana all over Latin America. And I sat with them and I had my Grabador and my tape recorder and I listened to them talk about their lives. And I wrote their stories so that people here in the United States can know how kids live in other countries.

KING: You were an English major?

J. BUSH: I was an English major.

KING: So you are a writer.

J. BUSH: So I'm a writer.

KING: And is that what you want to do?

Do you want to write books?

J. BUSH: Yes, I want to -- I mean I want to write books. I had such an incredible time doing it and it happened really naturally. And I -- I mean I hope to be inspired by other stories or I hope to -- you know, because I was quite inspired and so passionate when I was writing this, and it was so much fun.

KING: So you were a reporter emotionally involved in what you were covering?

J. BUSH: Definitely.

KING: How did that affect your writing?

J. BUSH: Yes, I mean it definitely affected it. I mean I definitely know that I was biased. And I definitely wanted to write it with child friendly eyes. I wanted to make sure all of my UNICEF colleagues read it. And we wanted to make sure that, you know, it portrayed these kids as who they are. And in the preface I do state that it represents -- I mean Ana represents millions of kids -- 2.3 million that live with HIV. And I did want to make this story hers and I also wanted to make sure it reflected all of the kids I met.

KING: Why isn't the world not doing more?

J. BUSH: You know, I don't know. And I think, actually, that's another thing I wanted do with the book, because it's for teenagers and it's for young adults. And I wanted kids, as a teacher, to know they can do so much. And so in the back of the book, there is a part at the back matter called action. And I guess it just says get involved if you can. And I think maybe kids don't get involved. I don't know about the world, but I know kids.

And I feel like sometimes kids don't get involved because they think, what can I do?

I'm just a kid.

And really kids can do so much. And so there's a very tangible back matter to tell the ways that kids can get involved.

KING: You call it a journey of hope.

J. BUSH: Um-hmm.

KING: Does Ana have hope?

J. BUSH: Yes, definitely.

KING: How do you explain that?

J. BUSH: Yes. Well -- well, one, you know, when I -- the most -- I was struck by Ana the fact that she wants to have hope. She wants to live with optimism. And so I would pose questions while I was hearing her life story, maybe in a negative way. And she would just say no, it's not negative. I'm so lucky. And so the fact that she's living responsibly, you know, and she, you know, has taken the anti- retrovirals to keep her baby safe -- it's in the book. But her baby -- you know, she inherited HIV from her mother because her mother didn't have the medicine to take. I mean mother to child transmission is preventable. And so Ana has taken the medicine. And she has done everything she can, through education, to keep her baby, Baby Beatrix (ph), safe and HIV negative.

KING: Where in Latin America does this take place?

J. BUSH: Well, it -- I met Ana -- you know, we don't say the country because she -- we want to keep her safe. And I actually like it. As an artistic tool, I thought it was important. At first, I had the country and I thought as a teacher, it's important to teach the geography. But I think it's OK that there is no country, because this happens all over the world.

KING: She's in danger?

J. BUSH: She could be in danger if people knew she was HIV- positive. I mean she wants to live a normal life. She doesn't want everybody in her country knowing.

KING: Has she seen her book?

J. BUSH: She has seen her book in Spanish and she loved it. And that was a really great phone call to hear.

KING: More of Jenna Bush and "Ana's Story".

Whoopi Goldberg at the bottom of the hour.

Don't go away.




J. BUSH: I'm proud to introduce my dad and your president, George W. Bush.


GEORGE BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It's an amazing line of work, isn't it, where you get your daughter to introduce you in front of thousands of people?

I'm really proud of Jenna and Barbara. Laura and I love them dearly. It warms my heart and strengthens my spirit to be campaigning with somebody I love a lot.


KING: You've always -- the book is "Ana's Story".

And they published 500,000?

J. BUSH: Yes.

KING: Whew!

What are you going to do with the profits?

J. BUSH: They go to UNICEF.

KING: No kidding?

J. BUSH: Um-hmm.

KING: Wow!

That's -- that says a lot.

J. BUSH: Thanks. They go to UNICEF and, actually, we set up an education fund so that Ana is back in school.

KING: You were always a very private person.

J. BUSH: Um-hmm.

KING: Now you're on a book tour, so a lot of that drifts away.

J. BUSH: Um-hmm.

KING: Hard to do?

J. BUSH: So far, so good. We'll see. I think, you know, I've never had anything to -- that has inspired me to come out and do these interviews. But I think it's very important that, you know, that we start a dialogue in this country about ways to give back. And I felt like "Ana's Story" was something that would make me come out and do these interviews.

KING: Do you feel funny, because every interviewer has to ask, to be asked questions about Iraq, your thoughts on Iraq?

J. BUSH: Um-hmm.

So you're asking me a question about Iraq?

KING: Yes.

What do you think?

J. BUSH: Well, you know, that's -- I don't feel like I'm an expert. I -- you know, I'm not. And I think it's a very complicated situation. And, obviously, I respect the men and women who are over there sacrificing their lives for us. But, you know, I don't feel qualified to talk about it.

KING: How do you handle the criticism about it?

You don't take it personal?

J. BUSH: No. I mean it's -- yes, no.

KING: Not your decision?

J. BUSH: Yes.


You're writing a book with your mother?

J. BUSH: Yes.

KING: What about?

J. BUSH: It's great. It's a picture book for kids. And it's based on a story she would tell Barbara and me when we were little girls about her teaching in inner city Houston. And it's based on one particular student who she would tell us stories about all, you know, all the time before we'd go to sleep. And so it's based on him. And it's a -- he's a reluctant reader who doesn't like to read. But through a teacher and through himself, he, you know, he realizes his imagination is bigger than he thought. It's very fun.

KING: A couple of other things.

What it was like growing up as a twin?

J. BUSH: Incredible. It was so incredible.

KING: So it was a plus?

J. BUSH: A plus. I mean we had -- I have the best twin the world, so that makes it even better. But she, you know, it's so fun to have somebody that you can relate with about everything. And she's just so supportive and so lovely and so smart. So it was really fun. We never played tricks, really. But we had fun together.

KING: Well, you're fraternal, right?

J. BUSH: Yes. We couldn't look any more different.


KING: So that's a big difference.

J. BUSH: Yes.

KING: If you were identical...

J. BUSH: We could play some tricks.

KING: "Ana's Story" is for young adults?

J. BUSH: Yes, it's for young adults. I mean I've had friends read it, because it obviously talks about HIV/AIDS. And there are still so many misconceptions about HIV/AIDS, you know, even here in the United States. And they have enjoyed it. So I think it depends -- and I would make teach it to seventh graders. So it just sort of depends, you know, on people's discretion. KING: What do your folks think of it?

J. BUSH: They're really proud of me. And they think it's really good. My dad thought it was really good.

KING: So they gave you a critique?

J. BUSH: Yes. My mom read it in its early manuscript stage and she gave me all sorts of edits. But, yes, she -- I think she's very happy with it.

KING: You mentioned teaching. You like teaching, too?

J. BUSH: I love teaching. I hope to continue teaching.

KING: So you can teach and write.

J. BUSH: Yes, I hope so. We'll see. I taught this summer and we wrote -- I wrote the book this summer. So I guess it could work.

KING: Following in your mother's footsteps?

J. BUSH: I think so.

KING: So you're doing how many cities?

J. BUSH: Twenty-six.

KING: Whoa.

J. BUSH: Major.

KING: But you've got 500,000 in print. You owe that to...

J. BUSH: Yes, of course. And it'll -- you know, and the thing I'm most excited about is we're traveling to schools...


J. BUSH: ...throughout the tour, and we're talking about Ana and the other kids I met and how kids can make a difference. And so even though I'm not teaching in the classroom, at least I'll be in the classroom.

KING: I would love to know Ana.

J. BUSH: Thank you very much.

KING: Thank you, Jenna.

J. BUSH: Thanks so much for having me.

KING: My pleasure.

Jenna Bush.

The book is "Ana's Story: A Journey of Hope," based on her work with UNICEF, published by Harper Collins.

Up next, the always out spoken Whoopi Goldberg, replacing Rosie, butting heads with Elisabeth.

And what about her mysterious better half?

Whoopi's inside view, when LARRY KING LIVE returns.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you sure, Whoopi?

GOLDBERG: I'm sure.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because it's a tough track up here, I'll tell you that.

GOLDBERG: I was over here in (INAUDIBLE).

Have a great day and take time to enjoy "The View".






BARBARA WALTERS, CO-HOST: You are about to meet the new moderator of "The View" and we are thrilled.

Please join us in welcoming Whoopi Goldberg!



KING: A great pleasure to welcome to LARRY KING LIVE one of my favorite people for a long, long time -- Whoopi Goldberg, the new moderator of "The View," now in its 11th season.

She's one of only four women to have earned the quadruple crown of show business -- an Oscar, an Emmy, a Tony and a Grammy.

You've been on the job now a month.

Do you like "The View?"

GOLDBERG: Yes, I like it a lot. KING: You guested on it a lot.

GOLDBERG: I guest on it a lot. You know, I used to think, well, this -- I can talk to folks and I can have some fun. And I always thought it would be fun to be with those ladies.

KING: Is being the moderator, though, different?

GOLDBERG: I'm trying not to make it different. You know, I think it meant something different when Meredith was doing it and, you know, they were truly leading it. I think I just kick the show off. That's how I'm looking at it.

KING: Let's do something "Viewish".


KING: You want to do something -- this is "Viewish.

GOLDBERG: All right.

KING: What do you make of Britney Spears?

GOLDBERG: You know what?

I don't know her. I don't know Kevin Federline. But it seems to me that one of the things that I feel is that maybe she feels it's for the best for a while if the kids are with their dad. And I think maybe she doesn't want to do the things she's been doing. That's why she's, you know, out partying and she just wants everybody to get away. And when I say that, I mean, you know, the performance stuff. You know, if you love what you're doing, you don't toss it away like that. I think she's tired.

KING: Do you feel sorry for her?

GOLDBERG: I feel concerned for her. In a funny way -- it's not funny, but I understand that feeling of I'm really done. I don't want to do this anymore.

KING: Now during your debut of "The View" moderator you got into the topic of Michael Vick and dogfighting. Let's listen to your initial comments what and you said the next day.


GOLDBERG: The Michael Vick thing, since we're talking about dogs. There are all of these very, very strong opinions about it. One thing I have not heard anybody say is, you know, from his background, this is not an unusual thing for where he comes from. For a lot of people, dogs are sport. It's not -- So I just thought it was interesting. Because it seemed like a light went off in his head when he realized this was something that the entire country really didn't appreciate and didn't like.

BARBARA WALTERS, "THE VIEW": Do you think he should not have been sentenced as he was? Because you say that it goes with the territory?

GOLDBERG: I don't know if it goes with the territory. But I thought it was -- if it had been somebody from New York City, my feelings would be very different.

So here I am, day two. Day one I step in it immediately. Let me really just reiterate this for real for everybody. I was not condoning, nor was I saying I thought Michael Vick did anything right. I did not say that I thought he was good in what he did. I condemn what he did.


KING: Did somebody tell you to like change it the next day?

GOLDBERG: No, I didn't change anything. I was making an observation about something that had occurred to me based on what I had seen on HBO's "Real Sports." I don't remember the reporter's name. I hope he will forgive me. But he went down South to talk to people who were doing this. And what he talked about was the culture, the cultural aspect of it. So I thought it was an interesting part of the discussion. Well, child, you would have thought I burned a dog or sat on a cat or, you know, that wasn't the issue.

And it went on and on and on. I thought, OK, I forgot that you have to, for some people, you have to explain yourself more than once. And so, you know, I never said I thought what he did was smart or good. And I said that.

I just said, I thought there was another direction to look at this from. Because I figure, if you look at it from all of the possible directions there might be possible answers we're missing.

KING: Why is "The View" suddenly so important?

GOLDBERG: I don't know.

KING: What people say on "The View" is now news?

GOLDBERG: Nobody ever quoted me when I was on "The View" before. I didn't know. I suspect, you know, it's edgier than it was. In the first nine years, don't think it was as edgy. I think it was edgy but not as edgy. And I just think that there is an idea out there that there are a gazillion woman watching this show, and a gazillion men as well. And maybe we have something to say that might be good in the fabric of the world.

KING: You're co-host, Joy Behar, was on the show recently and said something about "The View" and you. Watch.


JOY BEHAR: It's become a very bosomy group. We are all ...

KING: You have bosoms ...

BEHAR: A really big-bosom group. And Whoopi is just learning to wear a brassiere now so it's all coming together in a beautiful way.

KING: Did you have anything to do at all about the selection process?

BEHAR: Well, I stuck my two cents in.

KING: Did they ask your opinion?

BEHAR: Kind of. Yes, I mean I thought Whoopi was a great choice and I think I was right.

KING: Now what makes her special?

BEHAR: The thing about her ...

KING: She's a major comedian and actress.

BEHAR: She is but this is something new for her. Something that - acting I guess is something I guess she will always be able to do. But this kind of thing comes along once in a while to be on this show where you can blab it out and say whatever's on your mind.


KING: You have gotten some problems when you criticized President Bush, right? Did that hurt awe professionally?

GOLDBERG: Yeah. It hurt me professionally hugely. And actually the truth of the matter was I didn't criticize President Bush. I came out and I made some remarks to the crowd about John Edwards, the then- vice presidential candidate, made a comment about John Kerry, who was then the presidential candidate. And I then said that I loved Bush and that someone was giving Bush a bad name, and it was time to put Bush in its proper place. And I didn't mean the White House, so get out there and vote. That's what I actually said.

KING: That's all you said?

GOLDBERG: That's all I said. And before I got off the stage, it was on the A.P. that I had been vulgar and nasty and horrible. And what we subsequently discovered, was that there are groups out there when they target you, they send out e-mails and they send out -- I don't use the Internet, except to play games on it.

But they are charged to go out and target folks. They did it with Sean Penn. They did it with a lot of people. And it cost me four years of work.

KING: Four years?

GOLDBERG: Four years.

KING: When we come back, replacing Rosie. One outspoken lady talks about another next.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) GOLDBERG: Good morning. I'm Whoopi Goldberg. And welcome to "The View."

Welcome to "The View." Honey, let me tell you -- welcome, welcome, welcome to "The View," you all.

It's very nice because I like being here.




ROSIE O'DONNELL, FORMERLY WITH "THE VIEW": You were my friend since September ...


O'DONNELL: Do you believe that I think our troops or terrorists? And you would not even look me in the face, Elisabeth, and say, no, Rosie, I can understand how people might have thought that. Why don't you take this opportunity, like I'm six?

HASSELBECK: Because you are an adult. And I am certainly not going to be the person for you to explain your thoughts. They're your thoughts. Defend your own insinuations.

O'DONNELL: I defend my thoughts.

HASSELBECK: Defend your own thoughts.

O'DONNELL: Frankly, every time I defend them, it's poor, little Elisabeth I'm picking on.

HASSELBECK: You know what, poor, little Elisabeth is not poor, little Elisabeth.

O'DONNELL: Right. And that's why I will not fight with you anymore because it's absurd.


KING: What do you make of this who question, the whole Rosie thing. She has a book coming out. "Celebrity Detox", very critical of Barbara Walters. Excerpts have been released. What do you make of this whole Rosie O'Donnell story?

GOLDBERG: I don't really make much of it at all. I wasn't part of it. I hate to say it, but I came to it all quite late. I like Rosie. Rosie's been a friend of mine for a long time. I thought she did a great job on "The View" and for "The View" and "The View" for Rosie. Because she was gone for a while and I think she was great for people to see her back in her venue on television. So because I wasn't there, I'm always nervous about talking about stuff. Because it's all hearsay to me. KING: You know what she said and you know she's written a book, and you know she's very critical of Barbara.

GOLDBERG: Actually, I don't know what she said. I didn't know that the book was critical of Barbara. Because the last book I read was Jack Cafferty's book. You know, don't look for it. I can talk about my friend, Rosie. I can't talk about her time there. And I have seen the stuff on the television.

KING: Are you surprised that she's critical of people?

GOLDBERG: That she's critical of people? No. Rosie has always said what she thinks. She's really smart.

KING: Did you like the Cafferty book?

GOLDBERG: Love the Cafferty book. Love the Cafferty book.

KING: What do you make of the Rosie-Donald thing? That feud?

GOLDBERG: You know what, I don't want this to be rude but there was way too going on in my life to really pay attention to it. You know, I have a radio show.

KING: Still do, right?

GOLDBERG: Every morning, "Wake Up with Whoopi." I wake up, I'm up at 2:45 every morning. I'm out by 4:15. I'm on the radio by 5:00 a.m. And before I go "The View" job, I was home by 9:00 and into my other life. I'm just a big old movie star, so I tried to get movie star stuff and produced stuff. So I paid no attention. The reason I can talk a little bit about Britney Spears is because I had been on doing "The View." So I've had to be ...

KING: Are you saying you didn't know about Rosie and Donald Trump?

GOLDBERG: I heard it on CNN. I saw the clip. I thought, what is this? I thought, ooh, gas, got to go to the bathroom.

You know, life is too short for me to be involved in other people's feuds.

KING: You're an unusual person, Whoopi.


KING: We have an e-mail from Diane in Clovis, California. "Whoopi, why is the discussion on hot topics predominantly political?"

GOLDBERG: I think because we're going into a political year and I think everybody wants to talk about it. The ladies want to talk about it. It's predominantly political and very sexual. There's a lot of talk about sex, too. So there's -- I think that is why the hot topics are so political because it's right in the forefront.

KING: How would you describe the Whoopi style of moderating? How do you view what you do, have a little double entendre?

GOLDBERG: I love it. I actually haven't thought about it. It's -- People keep saying you're the moderator. And I keep saying, I don't know what this means. I am just going to go in and start the show. That's how I look at it. I don't look at it as the moderator. I look at it as I kick off the show and welcome the people into the coffee club and we're going to sit around and talk a lot of you know what.

Four, five women sitting around talking stuff. And then we get all of the movie stars in. I don't know if you ever see the show but I don't say much ...

KING: Seen the show. I have been on it.

GOLDBERG: But have you seen it recently?

KING: Have not seen it since you joined.

GOLDBERG: Here's the thing. The movie stars come on. The people, I don't know who they are. So I'm constantly getting fed information as stuff is happening because I'm so out of the pop culture that I'm lost. So I'm sort of trying to find that balance.

KING: But the show is looking for a young demographic, right? All shows are looking for a young demographic.

GOLDBERG: Well, I am a young demographic, baby.

KING: Yeah, but if you're out of pop culture, you're not a young demographic.

GOLDBERG: But I believe a young demographic wants to know more than just about pop stars.

KING: I hope you're right.

GOLDBERG: I believe they do. I believe that they can balance both. I believe they can have their gossip and have politics too and I think it will make a better dialogue and well-rounded young people.

KING: Does this mean -- of course you're doing this and the morning radio, that the very talented Whoopi is no longer going to act?

GOLDBERG: Probably not for a while. Also, you know, there's no room for the very talented Whoopi. There's no room right now in the marketplace of cinema.

KING: No roles come your way?

GOLDBERG: No, not for the longest time.

KING: How many movies have you done?

GOLDBERG: Probably 42, 43. It's not like I was sitting around. KING: And you don't see scripts?

GOLDBERG: No, they don't send them to me but they never have, Larry.

KING: Up next, Barry Manilow calls Elisabeth Hasselbeck dangerous and offensive. We'll get Whoopi's thoughts when LARRY KING LIVE returns.


GOLDBERG: Did anybody notice the ridiculousness of O.J. Simpson going and being arrested?

And then I woke up -- I woke up, we was in Iraq.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How did get to Iraq?

GOLDBERG: As a person who as dropped her daughter, I'm sorry, it happens. But I walk into walls now. Imagine me with a kid breastfeeding. Poof, into the wall.

The creepiest thing for me is he touched the floor of the men's room. Trying to get a piece of toilet paper. Why?



GOLDBERG: I'm asking to you do me a favor. Because there's no reason for it today. Just let me finish, gorgeous, let me finish.

HASSELBECK: OK, go ahead.

GOLDBERG: I'm simply saying that it's not that cut and dry.

What did Jesus say, wait a minute. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

So I'm going to be delivering her baby. So nobody question me.


KING: We're back with Whoopi Goldberg on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Barry Manilow, major hit back -- major hit in Vegas.


KING: Recently announced he canceled an appearance on "The View" because he considered Elisabeth Hasselbeck dangerous and offensive. Did not want to be on the same stage with her. Thoughts?

GOLDBERG: That just seemed strange to me. Because I know he has done the show several time when Elisabeth was on. So I don't know whether they misunderstand him or maybe he was just having a bad day. I don't know what that was about. It was kind of wacky to me. Again if he had never been on, I could have probably said, oh, wow, OK. But since he had done it several times, it kind of seemed not quite right.

KING: We know about Rosie and Elisabeth. Let's look at how you interacted with Elisabeth on a very touchy topic. Watch.


HASSELBECK: I'm sorry. But if you were talking about other women, maybe the name Monica might come to the forefront.

GOLDBERG: Elisabeth, I'm going to ask you to do me a favor. Don't bring Monica up in this broadcast.

No. I'm asking you to do me a favor. Because there's no reason for it today.


GOLDBERG: Because we're not talking about anybody else's life. We are talking about someone's religious belief that makes s people believe one thing.

HASSELBECK: But it's not his belief.

GOLDBERG: But you're bringing in ...

HASSELBECK: Mitt Romney ...

GOLDBERG: You don't know. No, it has not. It's nothing to do with Bill Clinton. It's so wrong!



KING: You looked like you were having a good time there?

GOLDBERG: Yeah. Listen, we have very differing ways of doing things, all five of us, in fact. But I just felt that her points are sometimes so salient, they are really good. She makes good points, yeah. And sometimes they challenge me to think about stuff. But I want -- I want her to sometimes to think about another way in. And what the rest of that was, is to find somebody else. You know, we know every little thing that's gone on in the White House. Now let's find somebody else.

She said, but that's in my life. I said, let's go with Eleanor Roosevelt, you know, because it just ...

KING: Yeah.

GOLDBERG: Because the point she was making was so good that it took it out -- as soon as she said that name, it took it out. And I just thought it wasn't necessary.

KING: You like her?


KING: She's very conservative.

GOLDBERG: She's very conservative. But I know a lot of conservative people. I know a ton of conservative -- I'm friends with conservative people. Bill O'Reilly is a friend of mine.

KING: What did you think of his recent ...

GOLDBERG: I thought that was funny.

KING: Funny?

GOLDBERG: Yeah, I thought it was funny. It's Bill. He's an entertainer. He's not a reporter. He's not a journalist. He's a guy with an opinion and sometimes he steps in it like I do.

KING: What do you think he meant by blacks can be nice in a restaurant.

GOLDBERG: I think he was actually trying to make what I call the proper white man's point. You know, when you watch those '60s movies and you hear the proper white man say, you know, we can all get along. That's what it was like.

KING: Lenny Bruce used to do comedy in that vain in 1960 ...

GOLDBERG: That's right.

KING: And say, would you people like any watermelons?

GOLDBERG: Right. But I think that had Bill gone out on that ledge, it would not have been acceptable. If a comic is trying to be funny and does something that's a little wacky, you say, OK, I can give you the benefit of the doubt.

KING: But he's not a comic.

GOLDBERG: No, he's not a comic. But I think that -- that whatever the point that Bill was trying to make was kind of lost on the people he was trying to make it on. Because most of those people actually know some black people and so it wasn't a shock to them that black people can actually do stuff.

KING: So he doesn't come down in your mind?

GOLDBERG: No, no, no, no, no.

KING: Coming up, Whoopi's talked a bit, just a bit about her better half. We'll get her to talk a little bit more right after this on LARRY KING LIVE.


GOLDBERG: I know this is more information than anybody ever needs. But I don't really ever want to wear a bra. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You don't want to?

GOLDBERG: No, I don't. But now that I'm on "The View" and everybody else seems to perky, I just kind of feel like it's time to lift and separate the girls, you know.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Talking about the boobs! She's wearing her bra!

GOLDBERG: The last time you're going to see it.


KING: We're back with Whoopi Goldberg. As outspoken as you are on so many things, did you develop a definite case of personal discretion in a recent exchange. Let us watch together.


GOLDBERG: And I love men. I love men. I love my better half. He's a great guy. But I find that men in general need attention, and if you're raising a little kid, you can't sometimes give that attention.

WALTERS: Just a second, please?

GOLDBERG: Yes, ma'am.

WALTERS: You just happened to mention something en passant, in passing ...

GOLDBERG: My better half.

BEHAR: Don't give it all away today. We have a lot of shows.

GOLDBERG: I'm not giving nothing! I'm just saying ...

WALTERS: But you have a better half.

GOLDBERG: I do, I do.

WALTERS: I have to. I'm try to act like I don't. Do you live with this better half?


WALTERS: Why should you or why do I ask?

GOLDBERG: Why do you ask?

WALTERS: Because you brought it up.

GOLDBERG: No I didn't.


KING: OK, for good old Larry -- who are we talking about?

GOLDBERG: I have a wonderful man in my life who I like and care for and love very much. And it is his express desire not to be brought out into the public.

KING: That means you don't go out with him?

GOLDBERG: We do go out but we're not always together. And so I've taken -- taken him at his word that he would prefer to not be chased down the streets.

KING: Is he public? Would you know him?

GOLDBERG: No, you won't.

KING: I would not know him?


KING: But he's together with you.


KING: Is he good with your children and grandchildren?

GOLDBERG: My children -- I can't even say how old my daughter is. She would kill me. But she's in her mid 30s, which I love saying.

KING: But they know him?

GOLDBERG: Oh yeah, they know him. They have known him for a long time.

KING: We have ...

GOLDBERG: Look at that fishing pole.

KING: I'm glad. But the main thing is, I'm glad you're happy.

GOLDBERG: Yes, I am very happy.

KING: And this is like the real thing for the Whoopi.

GOLDBERG: You know, it's always the real thing. Every experience I have had has been the real thing. Because it makes it better and teaches me more what I don't want. And this is the closest thing to a lot of what I do want.

KING: Are you still friendly with Franco Angela?

GOLDBERG: Yes. I saw his play.

KING: Playwright.

GOLDBERG: Yes. KING: I didn't say the play but I heard it. Unbelievable.

GOLDBERG: It was brilliant.

KING: An e-mail from Jacques in Kalamazoo, Michigan. "What is the message or intent you want to convey through your personal style, your hair and clothing. What are you saying?"

GOLDBERG: I'm not saying anything. I'm just me. What are you thinking, Jacques? What do you think when you see me? I don't know. I have not given it any thought. I have been looking like this for about 25, 30 years. So ...

KING: I don't know you any other way? Were you ever any other way?

GOLDBERG: Probably at birth. Just out of the canal.

KING: Do you have a preferential candidate?

GOLDBERG: You know what, I -- I like Bill Richardson. I'm looking at talking to him a lot. I just think he's got some really smart ideas based on a lot of what he's done in New Mexico and the fact that he was Ambassador Bill Richardson.

And it feels to me like one of the major things that's got to get done, and I have not really heard anybody say it until quite recently Chuck Hagel said it, and he wasn't running, is that one of the first things we have to do, is we need to repair our image around the world.

KING: He has a lot of qualifications.

GOLDBERG: And he's talked to all of the bad guys.

KING: Do you think Oprah has clout?

GOLDBERG: I don't know. I have not thought about it.

KING: With Barack Obama and the like, do you think she will continue to have ...

GOLDBERG: You mean to leave his wife or something? What kind of clout?

KING: No, no. In his possibly being elected.

GOLDBERG: Do I think she is going to be an asset to him?

KING: Yes.

GOLDBERG: Oh, absolutely, absolutely.

KING: Well, you're an asset to everyone you touch.

GOLDBERG: Thank you, Larry.

KING: One of my favorite people.


KING: The delightful Whoopi Goldberg.

Check out our Web site, You can e-mail a question for tomorrow night's guest, Dorothy Hamill, you can also download our podcast, Jenny McCarthy discussing autism. It's all at And now it's time for Anderson and AC 360.