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FOX News Channel Interview - Transcript


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FOX News Channel Interview

SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN (ID-CT): (From videotape.) To me, he's the real change candidate. Because unlike Senator Obama, he has a record of taking on the special interests, including in Congress, and working across party lines with Democrats like me. So how do I feel? I'm proud to be here for John McCain.

MR. SMITH: As we've mentioned, Fox News has details on what Lieberman will say tonight. In fact, I'm told -- there a Fox News exclusive -- we're told to expect a very personal speech that will appeal across party lines as he explains exactly why he backs a Republican candidate. Joining us now from Lansing, Michigan is Senator Debbie Stabenow. She's a Democrat.

Senator, how do Democrats feel about somebody, who used to be one of their own, backing John McCain so strongly?

SEN. STABENOW: Well, Shepard it's good to be with you tonight. And I have to say that my good friend Joe Lieberman has decided that continuing the war in Iraq is the most important issue for him. And I have to strongly disagree with him, first of all, that we need to continue it as is. I mean, even the Maliki government now and the Bush administration are talking about a responsible withdrawal to bring people home.

But equally important, I have to say, in Michigan and all across the country is the fact that we are seeing people work harder every day, they're making less and they're paying more for everything. We've lost 3.5 million manufacturing jobs. And I wish that Joe was really focusing on that because, frankly, we can't take more of the same.

And John McCain, who has said he thinks the economy is going pretty well, really doesn't understand what is happening with middle- class families all across the country.

MR. SMITH: How long do you think the shots from the operatives on the fringes from the Democratic Party are going to continue on Governor Sarah Palin?

SEN. STABENOW: Well, first of all, I congratulate Governor Palin. I love to see women being given opportunities. Where I disagree with here, again, is on the issues. She has chosen to join --

MR. SMITH: Yeah, but that's not what I'm talking about, Senator, with great respect. It's the Democratic operatives, who are sent by the Democratic Party to the cameras, who are doing the bashing. And I just wonder how long that will continue and if you think it's a good strategy.

SEN. STABENOW: Well, I think whether or not someone is experienced or qualified, their positions on issues are all part of what campaigns are all about.

MR. SMITH: But that's not what I was talking about.

SEN. STABENOW: Well, but --

MR. SMITH: I'm talking about the shots at her personal life. And my question, quite specifically was, I wonder how long you think they'll continue.

SEN. STABENOW: Well, at this point, what I would say is I want to see us focus. I can't tell you how long either conservatives attacking Senator Obama and Senator Biden or the liberals attacking the other side, I can't tell you. This is campaign time.

But what I can tell you is this, and that is it's legitimate to ask Governor Palin why should we join with a candidate who's opposed to equal-pay-for-equal-work laws, who voted against children's health care, who voted against raising the minimum wage many times. And the majority of people on minimum wage are women and children. And frankly, to embrace a set of economic policies that have created a disaster for too many places in the country, that's what I really want to see this debate about.

MR. SMITH: Senator, good of you to be here. Thanks very much.

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