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Fox News Network On the Record with Greta Van Susteren Transcript

Location: Boston, MA

Fox News Network On the Record with Greta Van Susteren Transcript
October 27, 2003 Monday

HEADLINE: Interview With Al Sharpton

GUESTS: Al Sharpton

BYLINE: Greta Van Susteren


REV. AL SHARPTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We cannot continue to play Bush roulette. That used to be Russian roulette. Now it's Bush roulette.


VAN SUSTEREN: Presidential contender Reverend Al Sharpton at the Democratic debate in Detroit last night.

Reverend Sharpton joins us from Boston.

Welcome, Reverend.

SHARPTON: Thank you. How are you doing, Greta?

VAN SUSTEREN: Very well, Reverend.

All right, Reverend. If you become president tonight, what are you going to do about the war in Iraq tomorrow, and what's the timetable of what we can expect?

SHARPTON: First, I think we need to say to the world community that we were wrong to engage in a unilateral strategy, and I think that if we say that we would be part of a multilateral strategy, not our being in charge, not protecting Halliburton and our corporations controlling the redevelopment and infrastructure, then we can go with some credibility and ask Kofi Annan and others to put together the redevelopment and rebuilding of Iraq. I think that that's the...

VAN SUSTEREN: And if they say no...

SHARPTON: ... first thing I would do.

VAN SUSTEREN: And if they say, no, it's—the United States went alone, so now it's your story, what are you going to do?

SHARPTON: Well, first of all, I don't think they would say no. Second of all, if they did at that point, then I think that we'd have the moral authority to go around the world and seek real allies.

What we're doing now is asking people to support us and to support our interests and that we're in charge, and I think that's why we're getting the resistance that we're getting. This was the resistance that people had to the strategy in the first place.

So, if people were opposed to our going in, why would we think that they would have an attitude now that they're going to invest in our control when they disagree with our going in the first place?

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Who surprised you last night, which one of your colleagues with what answer, of all the Democratic candidates, contenders?

SHARPTON: I think everyone was pretty much on message. I think I was a little surprised that Senator Lieberman had kind of come kind of aggressively at a couple of his opponents. But I think that basically everyone was on message and said what they had to say, and I think it was a good night for the Democrats.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You took Senator Lieberman on. You said—and tell me if I'm wrong—but that if you were president, you would speak, you would deal directly with Arafat? Is that right? And, if so, what would you—I mean tell me how you'd do this.

SHARPTON: What I said was—he said we shouldn't meet with terrorists, and I said are you—first of all, define who the terrorists are, and, second of all, are you saying you wouldn't meet with the head of the Palestinian Authority, Mr. Arafat, if it meant that you would be leading toward a peaceful resolution, are you attacking Bill Clinton for meeting with Yasser Arafat?

I went to Israel and the Israeli Foreign Minister Perez told me how to talk to Arafat, and I did, and I wanted him to define that since he had went there in his statement that he would not deal with terrorists. I think that it's important that we understand what the candidates are saying and whether or not we are really willing to do what is necessary to try to establish a peace and a just and balanced policy in the Middle East.

VAN SUSTEREN: Is Arafat part of the problem in your mind or part of the solution?

SHARPTON: I think that one can negotiate with those on all sides and assume that there has been serious problems on the Palestinian side many feel Arafat instigated, but I also think that the solutions have not been achievable without him being part of the discussions.

VAN SUSTEREN: But there was—but he wouldn't even accept it when President Clinton attempted to do that. I mean that didn't work with President Clinton.

SHARPTON: Well, first of all, it did not work but it has not worked eliminating him. We started dealing with another prime minister. He was able to get that prime minister out. I think that we've got to deal realistically, that we must try to find some level of peace and some level of balance, and we must do that in a situation that the people that are at the table can deliver what they promised. I don't know...

VAN SUSTEREN: All right.

SHARPTON: ... if we can deliver that without talking to some people we may not like to talk to.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. We've got 30 seconds left. Who is your dream vice presidential candidate on a Sharpton ticket? Who do you think would be the perfect one for you?

SHARPTON: I don't know. I mean it would have to be somebody that agrees with me. I'm way ahead of myself here.

VAN SUSTEREN: Come on. Give me a name. Give me a name, Reverend. Who do you think?

SHARPTON: Who would I—in a dream world, who would I have as my vice presidential candidate? I really don't know, Greta. I think you're already happy at Fox.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Reverend, you got me on that one. All right. Thank you. Thank you for joining us, sir.

SHARPTON: Good night.

VAN SUSTEREN: Coming up, Scott Peterson is less than 48 hours from his preliminary hearing. The prosecutors will show how they believe Laci was killed. What should you expect? Well, that's coming up.

And later, 400,000 acres burned, 1,100 houses destroyed, 13 dead. The wildfires continue to roar through Southern California, and we're going to take there live for the latest.

Content and Programming Copyright 2003 Fox News Network, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Transcription Copyright 2003 FDCH e-Media, Inc.

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