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tv   Smerconish  CNN  July 18, 2015 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT

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reflect badly on our queen her late sister or mother in anyway. >> that was atika shubert reporting. keep up with for the latest. you can catch two episodes of the original series the 70s. have a great night. a member of the armed forces has died in the chattanooga shooting being investigated as a terror attack. what if anything can be done to protect us. and donald trump surprises everyone by filing his financial records with typical trump like bravado. how forthcoming was he really? despite the legalization of gay marriage and the new pope's lenient views. a long time catholic school employee was fired for being married to a woman. you'll meet her. >> a fifth victim has died in the shootings in chattanooga.
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a navy petty officer died of his wounds sustained on thursday he's been id nighed as this man, randall smith. previously four young marines had died at the scene. here's the thing, my heartbreaks for the families of men who wore the uniform of our nation. our prayers go out to them. i want us to hunt and kill perpetrators of this type of islamic terror. at the same time i'm troubled. is terror on our shores the new norm? what does this mean for us? it appears that once again a 20 something inspired by his distorted views of islam, has killed innocent americans, must we get used to this? i just want us to maintain a sense of balance. they win when we over react when our need for basic safety is exceeded by measures to make us feel more secure. in 2007 i read a book it was
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titled overbloom by john mueller, a professor at ohio state university. he argued that fear of fligs after 9/11 caused more people to drive long dances which led to twrafk accidents that probably killed more people than 9/11 itself. he wrote, which is the greater threat terrorism or our reaction against it. a threat that is real but likely to prove to be of limited scope has been massively even fansfully inflighted to produce widespread and unjustified anxiety anxiety. that has led to policy over reactions. when i read those words in 2007 i wasn't ready to accept them. they sounded defeatist to me. 14 years removed from 9/11. and with yet another incident they're making more sense to me. they describe the world in which we live. we need to fight terror without succumbing to it. to din this discussion i have the ideal person tom ridge was
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the governor of pennsylvania on september 11th he was tapped by george w. bush to be the nation's first secretary of homeland security. >> joining me now is tom ridge. governor, let me begin with the question of semantics, what's your word choice? how do you refer to the incident that just unfolded in chattanooga? >> well i call it an islamic radical attack. whether or not it is tied directly to isil remains to be seen. it certainly in my judgment was inspired by isil. all the politically correct people may return around either term that's my belief and i just expressed it publicly. >> s do you think the administration is hindered in its ability to fight islamic terrorism by not using that word choice? and if so how. >> there's no question about it. i watched and listened carefully to president obama's
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articulation of his sympathy his commitment to the fbi to get to the bottom and try to determine all the facts, but frankly, there's been a persistent and consistent pattern for the past six plus years, when initially these were called man made attacks. failure to recognize the nature of the enemy you really put yourselves in -- you jeopardize your ability to defeat the enemy, i think that's clear, not only here domestically, but it's quite clear in our response to the ever growing presence of global scurge of terrorism and isil that this president refuses to recognize as the global scurge. it refuses to put his commander in chief hat on to deal with it directly. >> he would say, i'm sure it doesn't mean he's fighting any less the forces of evil that bring this about, he doesn't want to paint with a broadbrush so as to inspire hatred against the u.s. where it doesn't exist? i think i share that concern and
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belief with the president. he is you and i both know there are ways you can inaccu late that impression. and there's no one better to inoculate it than the president of the united states. this is clearly not a condemnation of the american and women who worship the individuals in the mosque. this is clearly not a condemnation of a billion plus muslims who live and pray in a very devout religion around the world. this is a condemnation of those who have an extreme interpretation of the koran, and who wrap their evil around the language of religion to justify it and clearly this president, who understands the value of words could articulate that message clearly, succinctly and persistently, he chooses not to do it. i frankly don't understand it i guess i never will. >> michael mccall is the chairman on homeland security. i'd like you to listen to
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something he said on friday. >> we've seen too much of this traffic. too many warning signs, the targets are identical to the targets, called by isis to attack. my judgment in my experience is that this was an isis inspired attack. >> i guess the question is are we ever going to be able to catch a guy like this who is operating off the grid. there are reports of his father having appeared on the watch list as as the story is evolving thus far, there's no reason to believe he the shooter in this instance had been on the minds of law enforcement. >> it's impossible in a country of 310 million people to take someone -- i've read some of the reports about this individual fairly devout up until a couple months ago. his wrestling coach had had a great deal of respect for him. those around him, no apparent evidence of his inclination or desire to commit these particular acts. i think we are kidding ourselves
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if we believe that we could identify all these people in advance. >> am i hearing from you the nation's first secretary of homeland security get used to it this is the new norm? >> unfortunately, i think you are hearing it from me. we're going to do everything we can to try to identify these individuals. it is impossible to do so in this country in spite of our best efforts. but we're certainly not making our best efforts overseas to defeat and discredit those who have thrown this ideology out, who have used the social media to make it far more attractive than any other global terrorist organization has ever done. and that's one of the concerns i have had. we don't have a commander in chief who's decided to take them on and defeat them and discredit it. this needs to be an arab led coalition, that can defeat them in iraq and syria. >> are you suggesting that young men in the passion you were years ago, meaning when you
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served your country in vietnam, american men should be going over there to fight isis boots on the ground? >> it's pretty clear that isis brought the fight to the american soldiers to the united states. it's pretty clear that that was their directive, it's clear that this murder carried it out in tennessee. and let me also be clear, i've had enough friends who fought in iraq and afghanistan. these brave young women who understand the nature of the mission. who probably better understand this is a global scurge. and unless it's defeated militarily the incidents that we were talking about today will become more frequent. this is taking the global scurge and reminding us the battlefield. we had boots on the ground in tennessee. and we have isil saying you don't have to defeat the enemy over there. they wear law enforcement uniforms military uniforms. if you can't come over here to defeat them --
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>> i don't want to understate the significance of four marines losing their lives on united states soil. i think it's god awful. we're having this conversation at a time when i'm looking at my cnn security pass thinking about taking off my shoes at the airport. i'm thinking about the dogs below me in the building where i'm sitting in the subway system sniffing for bombs and on and on and on. do we have a tendency to over react in the face of this type of a catastrophe? >> security's pretty heavy everywhere you go in this country. and to your point, i think it's appropriate, we lament the loss of these lives, the barbaric and evil act. the fact of the matter is, i don't mean we become immune to it we have to remained ourselves that the threat of islamic terrorism is a global scurge and until we're much more aggressive oversees not only here but u.s. citizens are going to be under attack. i think the level, obviously local law enforcement and fbi --
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>> governor ridge, stick around. on a much more pleasant subject, we're going to have a conversation about one of our favorite guys papa bush we'll do that in a couple moments ago? >> coming up in the months leading up to the attack. how did the gunman turn from an all american friendly kid to a killer? and while other presidential candidates have downplayed their wealth that's certainly not true for mr. trump, what in his financial background would he rather not talk about? and a beloved catholic school employee fired because she's gay, even though administrators knew she was married to a woman. why now?
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get this one done. ask your healthcare professional about prevnar 13® today. the chattanooga gunman was once described as funny and charming. he was a disciplined mixed
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martial arts fighter and a top student in tennessee about that image of him was quickly shattered after his deadly rampage on thursday. investigators say there are several factors pointing to the possibility that the shooting may have been terror. the suspect spent much of his last year in the middle east and some close to him say the trip may have radicalized him. the fbi is doing all it can to gather information on the gunman. let's dig deeper joining me now is sean henry. the former executive assistant director. given what's now known, what do you find significant about his profile. the focus will be on the travel to the middle east. you look at the investigation that's been done locally in chattanooga chattanooga, the interviews of friends and family members, people at the school and where he worked all very monthstive
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well acclimated young man who appears to have been associated within the community. but after coming back from the middle east some stark change in his personality. i think as an investigator looking at this that's where the fbi will focus and look at as well those communications to try to get a better understanding of that circle of people who may have influenced him. >> he seems to have a lot in common with joe car tsarnaevsar dzhokhar tsarnaev. i worry that you're never going to be able to find that kind of a guy in advance, unless they have a social profile. >> that's a great point. i thought the same thing, you looked at tsarnaev coming back after having travelled internationally prior to the events in boston. what the fbi needs to focus on going-forward is a better coordination with the community. i think the bureau has a
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tremendous relationship. i was the assistant director in charge of the washington field office i went at the end of ramadan at the mosque. i was invited in and set with the leaders there, it was a time of celebration, those people the community there is certainly against this and is in a position potentially to identify somebody who might be making violent statements or acting abnormally particularly if they come back from a trip like this where they may have become radicalized during the course of that event. >> april 20 he was arrested for a dui, he smelled of pot, had some kind of residue on his face that may have suggested he inhaled something, which makes me wonder how devout was he really? >> that's again, looking at the community and people who know him if they see abnormal behavior particularly after a particular event or some interaction with somebody that's the type of opportunity
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where somebody can intervene. not necessarily bringing all of that to the law enforcement attention, but engaging that person themselves. you see somebody acting abnormally do they need help are they troubled? is there something that's occurred in their life that has created a change and is a potential threat. so that private sector side of the ability for citizens and the community to come together is really important. when the fbi is unable to identify people who pose a specific threat. that's not going to happen with 100% certainty. >> you may have heard my opening commentary is this the new norm do we need to get used to the idea that there will be terror on our shores? >> i think that's right. the advent of the internet the proliferation of social media, the ability for radical fundamentalists to be able to reach out from anywhere on the globe into people's living
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rooms, into their bedrooms where they can access this rhetoric where they get this constant barrage, this daily pummeling of information on a regular basis, and you never know what might cause them to act, if they're having a bad day, they have a dispute at work. you finally hear something that causes them to take up arms and harm american citizens we're in a new phase in our history, and it's something we're going to have to deal with as americans for a long long time michael. >> final question if i might. the politicians get tongue tied as to what to call this. does the label that they affix to a tragedy like this matter to a guy like you in law enforcement? does it have some kind of an impact how we fight it? >> to the average citizen it doesn't. from a law enforcement person it's important to categorize things because it helps when you're doing an assessment. in this particular case i know there's been some reference to
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this being domestic terrorism. >> if anything the bureau is looking at international terrorism. and the term international versus domestic is based not on where it occurs but who may have inspired it i'm certainty bureau is looking at this as isis inspired. his travel internationally is a key piece here and they would look at this as international. the way it's being termed by the fbi is critical because you can start to look for patterns, it helps to assess where you may want to look as an investigator for additional leads, michael. >> good information, sean. thank you for delivering it. coming up donald trump surprises everyone by filing his financial statement. his climbs keep inflating, what can we believe? i'll talk with someone who has covered mr. trump for decades, and we'll meet the veteran educator who was fired for being married. a romantic fumble at this romantic chateau ... leads to these fine humans. who you take to this eco-lodge ...
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i don't need anybody's money, that's nice many i'm using my own money. i'm not using the lobbyists, donors i don't care. i'm really rich. i have assets big accounting firm one of the most highly respected. 9 billion 240$240 million. >> the good news how much do i have? 10 billion. >> welcome back if donald trump is to be believed his net worth has gone up another billion, just in the time since he's announced his candidacy, how credible are those claims. many thought trump would complete the race before revealing his financial information. he surprised us by disclosing he fighted with the federal
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election commission. his two-page release belittles the process. and it proudly proclaims that mr. trump's net worth is now in excess of $10 billion. are his numbers real? forbes erecently did the math and said his net worth was like 4 billion. here to examine the donald's financial world and history, is someone who has covered mr. trump on and off for almost 30 years and recently wrote this pointed piece. 21 questions for donald trump. pulitzer prize winning journalist david okay johnston thank you for being here. he's already made a billion dollars in the time since he's announced candy daisy, how incredible is that? >> when you have companies cut you loose, it's hard to believe
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that's increased your assets. we don't know what his net worth is he's just told us what his assets are. >> i think members of the public don't comprehend this, i was in chicago two weeks ago, in the course of driving through downtown chicago, there is this enormous building emblazened with trump across it. i wonder if people think, trump owns that, and owns it outright. >> donald's properties are largely heavily leveraged, he once persuaded one of the major banks not to file a mortgage against one of his properties. which i revealed years ago, donald in these buildings, some of them he only licensed his name and has a small sliver of ownership in them. some things he owns outright. we don't know what he's farmed out to other people what his share of profits is. it's misleading because you think his name is on the building it's huge.
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his casino company went through bankruptcy three times. the trump shuttle failed. very successful business people often have business failures. according to donald everything is a success. >> he's really rich right? >> without any doubt, donald is an extremely wealthy man. to live the lifestyle he has doesn't require $10 billion even if he had that much. it could be much lower and we don't know. >> let's drill down on an example of his worth. with regard to the apprentice he was paid $213 million for 14 seasons. not a bad day at the office. >> that's pretty good. you'll recall that in 2011 he announced he signed a two year deal for $130 million. and nbc issued a statement saying those numbers are way, way out of bounds many it's nowhere near that kind of money. donald has testified under oath that he inflates the numbers he tells people. he's admitted to this under oath. you have to understand that
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donald puts out a number you can't rely on it. >> with regard to immigration, illegal immigration, as a businessman, has he practiced what he has preached? >> no and the most famous example is when he tour down a building to build trump tower. there were 150 illegally polish men here without hard hats he paid that less than $5 an hour avoided safety inspections and labor troubles during that period. and was found by a judge in a conspiracy to cheat the workers out of their pay. >> your former employer where you won a pulitzer prize. two front page stories about marco rubio. one had to deal with the way in which he runs his own personal finances another delved into his driving record. we learned since 1977 he and his wife have racked up 17 driving offenses. by the way, 13 were hers four were his. none of that kind of scrutiny has been applied to the business
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practices of mr. trump. i wonder why as a journalism question, when that happens, will he be able to with stand that level of scrutiny with regard to his business practices? >> donald is very good at bullying news organizations, threatening people. >> did he ever threaten you? >> oh, sure. >> i've been told i'm the most awful person in the world. he does this to government officials. especially if you write about how donald doesn't pay people that he owes money to or tries to avoid paying. i think if you're running for president, we should thoroughly vet who you are, we should know your background and no i don't think dorn ald will survive that. part of the reason is when he built trump towers and other buildings, he chose a company called s & a concrete it was owned by the mob, his personal helicopter pilot was a convicted cocaine and marijuana trafficker. before and after he was in
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prison and donald wrote a letter seeking leniency. this case came up in front of his sister. she recused herself from it. he has a lot of unsavory relationships that need to be examined. if we're going to pick a president by donald's standard. i'm rich i'm worth 10 billion. well first warren buffett -- >> he clearly thinks the size of one's wallet ought to determine their fitness for office. is he a generous guy? >> no. no one's ever been able to find a serious record of that. he hasn't put a penny in his own foundation since 2006 and before that most of the money came from the world wrestling federation. >> still a cloud surrounding trump university and that case i think from eric schneider men, that suit is still pending? >> no, it was an illegal educational institution.
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he said 35,000 i'll show up he never showed up. i'll give you an exclusive list of banks. >> i can't wait to see what he calls you on twitter as a result of having been here to offer that opinion. >> you'll be in good company, mine. her sexuality was no secret did a catholic school go too far, when they fired a long time beloved gay employee. we'll hear from the president of the catholic league who says the case is a slam dunk as well as the educator who was let go. who she's appealing to for a little help, you'll find interesting. a knack for predicting the future. reflexes faster than the speed of thought. can a business have a spirit? can a business have a soul? can a business be...alive?
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a headline from today's newspapers in fact i have the times right here might alter the future rights of gays in the workplace. the united states equal employment opportunity commission has ruled that workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is illegal under federal law. the ruling is not binding on
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federal courts it might benefit employees who were fired for being gay. in my hometown of philadelphia one such case right now is the source of great controversy. it caught my eye as a cafeteria catholic. margie winters was the director at waldon university. a title she held since 2007 about as long as she's been with her wife andrea. here's the deal winters never tried covering up who she is or who she's married too. that has many asking well why now, and why the school hired her in the first place. joining me now is margie and her wife. people may be surprised to know that up until this development, you don't have a legal leg to stand on in challenging your termination. >> that's right i don't. >> you acknowledge that. you're not here to fight legally for your job you want your
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story told? >> that's right. we think that's important we raise awareness of this in the community. and in particular the catholic community. >> i talked about your plight on the radio, and a number of radio callers want to know why did you want that job to begin with if you were the director of religious education and you knew the church teachings were at odds with your marriage? >> well my answer would be why wouldn't i? the academy is a wonderful community filled with faith filled parents and children and teachers who are committed to mercy and justice. i think it's been a great place for me to express my father and help the children learn -- >> was there ever conflict in the way in which you approached your job and your own marriage if so how did you resolve those issues. >> there was never a conflict with my job, you know my job i think i approached it as presenting the catholic faith as
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it is. the conflict is with the understanding of the teachings of the church. and for me it's a conflict of vision of who we are as a church. >> if you had been an activist for planned parenthood and held the same position you could understand given the pro life position of the church how they wouldn't want you in that role is this the same kind of a circumstance? >> i don't think so because i think the marriage issue goes to -- or -- goes to who i am as a person and who -- i don't think it's the same. >> i was surprised andrea with -- you've appealed to the pope i wonder by the way, how do you address a letter to the pope? here it is. >> we wondered that too, we had to do some research. >> any reply? >> no not yet. >> he's said some things that would seem supportive of a union like this? >> absolutely he's reached out to the gay and lesbian
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community. more importantly, he's a very pasteural pope. he's shown he wants to get to know the people that he sheppards, and that's really all we're asking is to get to know us let us tell you our story. >> i was -- you already heard me describe myself as a cafeteria catholic i'm taking the jell-o i'm rejecting the turkey you know what that's about. this hasn't challenged your catholic faith at all? >> on the contrary, it's made it even deeper. >> i love this church i think this has realized how much i want to fight for it. because there are some that want to exclude me from the faith. and i don't want to be excluded. >> by church teet paching this is not something the clutch condones. >> it's not something the hierarchy of the church condones. when christ walked the earth, he railed against the hierarchy for
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trying to exclude people by using the laws of the faith at that time to exclude people. if that's not happening now, i don't know what else this is. >> i can attest to the fact that at home in philadelphia you've been the recipient of tremendous support, can you summarize the sentiment at the school among the parents? >> i mean people are just in disbelief and in particular because i think it goes against who they are. this community has claimed mercy and openness trust, hospitality, and they're wondering. they're struggling with the tension between the decision and who we are. >> am i right in saying that when you were highered you made clear that you were married? and the principal who hired you knew that and it was fine? >> and it was fine yes. >> and there was a complaining in the leadership of the school? >> yes, but that had nothing to do with this decision. the decision really -- or the conflict came when a parent complained about this.
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>> how many beefed one? >> one parent? actually i think two as far as i -- i'm aware. >> you weren't fired by the archdiocese. this is a private catholic school that the archbishop has weighed in on the side of your determination? >> he has. >> the pope comes to philly in september? >> yes. >> you going to make a play for his attention? >> yes. >> i think if he hears our story, he would want to sit down and talk with us. >> thank you both for being here. >> now to the flip side of the coin it's undeniable public perception about homosexuality, and same sex marriage has shifted in recent years. the catholic church's stance has not. winters firing doesn't come as a surprise to many including the president of the catholic league who has an op ed out this morning about her firing. joining me now is bill donohue. i have to ask, the jesus question would he be cool with the termination of this educateor educator? >> oh, absolutely.
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remember what jesus did with the money changes, he took out his whip didn't he and said get out. you cannot come into a voluntary organization i don't care if it's catholic protestant jewish knowing full well what their scriptures are, and deceitfully decide i'm going to stay there. the pope never said anything even close to acknowledging and sanctioning gay marriage. never. >> well wait a minute if someone is gay who searches for the lord and has good will, who am i to judge? aren't you judging? >> he made a judgment didn't he? when he said i'm not going to judge. >> come on he's your guy, he speaks for -- >> i know that and he speaks for me on that. what he's saying is he's not talking about homosexuality, he's not talking about marriage he's simply saying something which is highly unremarkable which the previous popes have all accepted. if you happen to be gay, you are
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deserving of equal dignity as a child of god as if you were straight. there's a profound difference between being gay and straight and two guys saying i'm getting married. if you had an orthodoxed jewish school or muslim school and said i'm the director of religious education, but i don't care for islamic teachings when it am coulds to marriage what would they do? wouldn't they throw you out? >> respectfully that's not what i'm hearing from either of these women. what they're saying is that they are -- the real embodiment of catholicism. i want to ask you something else. >> you know the catholic church -- >> this is not what the carriage lick church teaches. >> i have a colleague at home in philadelphia she writes for the philadelphia daily news and she wrote this put it on the screen. attention all you divorced remarried, pill popping, viagra chewing, infir untilty chewing,
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masturbating employees of waldron mercy academy, your days are numbered. doesn't she have a point, aren't we all in glass houses? >> no there's room in the asylum for her. we're talking about a public statement, everyone knew that she was living in violation of the catholic church's teachings. it's not even a gray area you either accept the teachings or you don't. in i joined a vegetarian society and became an officer and i finally said you know you guys ought to lighten up what's wrong with having a hot dog at a ball game they'd show me the gate. that's what should happen at any private institution. >> the lawyer in me loves the analogies, so i'll play along. if i'm a vegan and i work at mcdonald's, but i make a great burger should i nonetheless be fired when they say, oh, my god,
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smerconish is a vegan? isn't the most important thing that she was competent at her job, and her marriage at home didn't interfere with her -- >> you can have a catholic teacher arguably according to this insanity who belongs in the klan we don't really advertise i belong to the klan once in a while i can belong to the imperial wizards and i teach really good math. this was a teacher of religious education. she was there to subvert the church and lost. >> she's been fired for doing something that's not legal across the country according to the supreme court of the united states. >> marriage is a sacrament in the catholic church we don't care what the sivg ilsociety says. it's a sacrament, it's entirely different. we don't want the state telling the church what to do. >> the pontiff is coming to philadelphia and my guests before you, they say they will make this an issue upon his arrival, you heard that one of
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them has written to his holiness what do you think if anything he'll do with this issue? >> i think that he's engaged in outreach and pasteural changes, stylistic changes to soften the churches approach but in terms of substantively changing doctrine he's referred to the idea of gay marriage as the work of the devil. why don't people read what the man has actually said. >> i think i read accurately what he actually has said on this issue, perhaps he said things that are in contradiction with it. bill you know i appreciate your being here. final word i don't think time is on your side in this argument, you must know that. >> you know what i don't really care. i'm not engaged in a popularity contest. i'm ingauged with the catholic church in the pursuit of truth, that's it. >> thank you very much phil donohue. bush xli on the mend this weekend after breaking a bone in his neck. i'll have the latest on his condition, as well as a new moving interview he did right before his accident. in it he reveals the achievement
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every week i like to end the show saying you can gin me on twitter if you can spell my name
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is that jason says smerconish another petty and liberal moron who knows best for us all. and i don't mean to be betty, but i think you mean for all of us. see you next week. i must say to you that the state of the union is not good. >> will these people translate politics into power and make the government work. >> we are privileged to witness a significant treatment in the cause of peace. >> what was once a distant foreign policy issue has become a domestic issue. >> there is no delays -- >> we can turn this country around and our economy around and the time to do it is now.