tv Politicking With Larry King RT January 16, 2014 9:00pm-9:31pm EST
welcome to politicking with larry king one of my favorite people a legendary newsman dan rather what does he expect from the president and the president's political opponents in the years ahead as you see parallels between the bridge controversy surrounding new jersey governor chris christie and the watergate scandal that brought down richard nixon plus how far would he go to get a story it's all next on politicking with larry king. on the politicking he's a bestselling author he was one hell of a white house correspondent one of the best anchors ever the long time ago the c.b.s. evening news he currently is the host and managing editor of dan rather reports on
access t.v. and i'm honored to have the legendary newsman and my friend then join me he's been with us many times in fact this man while i think we just c.b.s. news would cover hurricanes for us on larry king live in the lower number standing our very very well no victory dan rather without him our let's get right to it what do you make of the bridge gate well first of all it's an overstatement call it bridgegate and no one has sort of all this serious but a few first from about it this all started with watergate watergate became a shorthand word for a widespread criminal conspiracy led sort of say by the president the united states out of the oval office constitutional crisis of the country more than forty people sort of court time now those who know that story to be true but there's widespread criminal conspiracy tried always. to soften it by saying well these things happen all the time there is
a bridge gate it is this gate and that gate there's only one gate and that's watergate good series now this bridge fiasco you can call it that but as we head toward a probably a better word she would have made it there is one has to has to have some context for things and the watergate is in a whole different category now this kind of thing does happen in politics very often but widespread criminal conspiracy led by a president whom happened once or a lifetime first of all i think this story has a long way to run. and what's happening to governor christie he's hunkered down like a mule in a hail storm just right now. i was going to ask you to give me a dan rather is rushing toward first these gone through you just gave it to me well he's also admitted he would rather walk through a furnace in a gasoline suit and go through this. because partly is other is some of your republican compatriots are turning on him like your friends of the desperate housewives turn on one another that's inevitable in these things happen i think it
is a long way to run we don't know how it's going to turn out i do not assume that it necessarily knocks christie out of the republican prison in the law who's going to find out that he knew about it more it could but it isn't here now we have to know more they've indicted the other call on people to testify what if someone turned or someone said he did know well that would be very bad news for christie indeed but you mention criminal charges that's one difference here watergate as they say of widespread criminal conspiracy forty people convicted felons as best i can see there's no mall been broken here in the bridge gate thing now it may turn out to be their best to getting one and they missed you know they were in one but as i understand it from criminal defense attorneys it is going to be a difficult case to make but we will see what is not a widespread criminal operation i think where the trouble is really going to come down in the courts are civil cases people say listen i was put out this was unfair
and i think that they'll have some cases you've covered politicians for so on the something that always amazes me and i defer to your knowledge of this whether christie knew or not less said his top aide nixon was going to win that election what is the invading democratic headquarters looking for why you're going to win the election one mayor isn't supporting you so your staff close is. well you're going to win whatever are you were one whether governor christie knew about it or was involved or not we don't. no but at least his staff you have to say they were schooled in the high ninety's on a dumb test this was really dumb to do it on off from all appearances with these big good people did was they parachuted into the valley of the stupid he didn't need to do is read the first he could get them a month from now a year of now two years and it was a dumb thing to do but look who among us haven't done something dumb our lives and pettiness the jersey city governors big mayors elected people are all going to come
down to help them he says he's not going to go as they cancel everybody telephone state about the city why the big politicians major politicians get petty. a good understanding of the local councilman but why a governor or a governor's top aide well because nobody's perfect that's number one secondly it depends on organizations take on their personality and character from the top and not every political organization is filled with revenge and that i'm point out the downfall of richard nixon was clearly it wasn't good enough for richard nixon to beat his opponents this is key it was into the watergate thing it wasn't just good enough for him the big his opponents he's want to destroy and that's the lion and you can say in a way that land where that land was made to determine how long this bridge situation goes because if from all appearances they sought to destroy the mayor the
democratic mayor there in support of the give this report admission i i was going to discuss this later or bring it up now fox news channel president of into this roger ailes who's in now they've got a book coming out that really apparently really attacks him i haven't read it yet he was asked in the interview today the distinction between the news and opinionated program his exact reply was i grew up in the era when dan rather hated richard nixon he was a newsman but you knew what his opinion was a reaction well first of all of the you hated things i've never seen it just simply isn't true it isn't really really worth discussing i'm respected and continue respect the office of the president i respected richard nixon and he came into office what is true if we know this from the tapes richard nixon hated dan rather and c.b.s. news that's a matter of record and roger ailes was and for all of the things he's accomplished roger ailes was an operative for richard nixon use of an expected to say something like this and frankly i don't take it personally don't take it seriously do you
agree with the think that the thought that fox news channel is a actual a part of the republican party. you know what i'm pausing only because i want to be give a thoughtful answer that. i understand that argument i think it goes too far which used to say i think ailes is considers himself still a part of the republican party i think and so far as he's able to do that he wants his channel to be that way but i don't want to indict everybody at fox news channel because i know some of the pros there who are pretty good i don't want to dance around your question but i do do think that roger ailes would say this about him he is a very good businessman he's very smart about television and he built a network when i for one wasn't at all sure he could do so and has he used to do benefit the republican party yes the record is great clear on that but is it a soul operative in propaganda machine for the party other stop short of that right
now or move to something is more current expectations for obama in two thousand and fourteen what's going to happen in the house and the senate well if you're not as good as many times the straight answer kind of question is i don't know i want to discuss it with you but you know i've been around long enough to know that he who lives by the crystal ball learns to eat a lot of broken glass in either evident more than my share of the talk about what's going to happen i would say at the present time we're talking here near the end of january in the election year i think the republicans keep control the house of representatives i would not be surprised to see it in games and seats in the house republicans keep control of the house in the senate the republicans will gain seats in the house and the senate but i don't think enough to get control of the senate it is not going to be a good year for parag obama and the democrats in my judgment you easy to few months back that president obama's opponents politically want to cut his heart out and throw his liver to the dogs politically where he is that still true even more today
it was when i started you think it's part racist. i do of course only because i know that people jump over them but it was later so venomous well here's a little bit i do want to make clear not everybody who disagrees with obama not nearly everybody not everybody in the republican party if your question was is some of it yes i think it's impossible to have the first president of color in the white house and not recognize that that some of the dislike for him and his policies is rooted in racism no question about it but not by no means all of it and let's acknowledge that president obama has made his own mistakes. he hasn't operated a perfect presidency. so it gets complicated but the answer question is some of the races of course as an american as a journalist forty of thought is no do this hero or a villain you know no human has that person who's the most difficult question i have to try to answer these days i come out of i think he's neither a hero nor
a villain at least not of asians what we know because we don't know the whole story or you know they leaked or we don't they look no question about that but for example when i'm not did he get the job intending to be the leaker that he became or was he conscience stricken every got the job it's on things like that we don't know but again i don't want to basle it but i think like most people i'm i'm a bit torn on the one that i think the information on the medium and long will it will be of value to society we stand a chance of being a better country because this information gets out in the short run i understand the irgun this is listen the country needs to be able to keep some secrets such as who in our spy apparatuses has contacts in pakistan and other places pose and enjoys difficult to come down on it that i think he's neither a hero nor
a villain i think those who say bring him back to this country let him. stand trial that's fine but it quickly gets in the question if you're going to put him on trial what about the head of the g.s.a. of what do you know the lawyers on the at the n.s.a. who didn't deliver to the congress but he of course on the right to listen to phone calls of. domestic or foreign you know i think you want to i don't agree with arnold ok denies that no i think in in twenty first century reality. that the government has to have a very constricted and very limited ability with proper safeguards built into it to listen to some calls what i'm old really opposed to is blanket listening to calls over and there is a system in place as we know i'm not saying the system is perfect let's point for cyclists is to be used that you have a court where they're supposed to go to lose court and the court is supposed to be
a check and balance now some of the time they have been going to court other times it looks like the court may be the quote the fix is in but i can't i can't subscribe to the theory of this is the government under no circumstances can listen to no telephone calls to most it was not given to terrorist in burma which were uppity and right how do you feel about it i greet totally one hundred percent with just that it's a dilemma but they've got to do what if you knew someone was going to do something or you had strong suspicions and you could prevent it you not for that yes and how would we judge any president who said well i could have known what you know what i understand that he's better not to me but we write better than great dan rather coming up more right after this.
this guy likes the spirit that guy stead of working for the people politicians the peachtree media for each other bribe right station. it's. a good read. bradley dan rather the former anchor c b s evening news and now of course with access t.v. dan i understand the president is no one from the administration or is the president of first lady going to the olympics for the thing. all things considered probably the right to michael because well because there's so much going on in the soviet union including the persecution of gays and lesbians but there's only a part of it it wouldn't very difficult for him to go in my judgment but i have no
doubt it was a close call on his mind because after all the olympics with most of his and very special category and you try to lift it above the nation for that matter international politics but in russia at the present time just not possible. ok we have a situation this country that presidents unpopular with congress on whose popular it was a hero in america. well it's a good question maybe united do a book where of all the heroes long i think there are a lot of heroes listen i think the cop who walks the lonely beat in a tough neighborhood by himself and my hero i think the single mother with three kids is working four jobs trying to keep or. her family together is a her on their day to day heroes all over the country in terms of transformational political leaders pretty short supply right now and you look up and down the society but we go through these periods you know larry you know i've talked about
the so many times before i'm so i'm an optimist by experience and by nature i love this country with a deep abiding. and i'm up pretty well in future i know the argument that go listen we're on the down whose lives are in the back side of the slope we're in the room on the spending they're good and we have no over commanding heroes in our political life but you know what we'll get there we'll get there and i don't have any doubt about it great lawyer to friend of mine the way that we've been a williams i asked him once are you an optimist or pessimist he said of course i'm a pessimist unintelligible i'm not going to take the opposite view that i don't know that compare that i wanted you to compare the controversy over lara logan's now discredited sixty minutes report and the problems you had if your national guard service report on will join in or it larry but i want to make it very clear i don't want to add to c.b.s. news these problems are a local problem i know what it feels like to be in the vortex of those kind of
controversies and i'm pulling for everybody at c.b.s. news. firstly and of all my life there is a great difference between their situation this is the one you mentioned and what we would do with the bush national guard story would see it clearly where our story our story was true you could argue in play did that we reach that truth through a flawed process and there are plenty of people that they knew the story was true but they couldn't stand it so they had to make it out to be false that's what happened to us good thing our story was true did george bush's father use influence to keep him from going to be at nama getting him in the initial guard yes that's true. george w. bush there's no joint saying there's did he disappear from his natural born obligations that's a fact those things are true to our story was true we court held you can argue preference shoot him that the process was not pristine but i'm going to cut want to come back to i'm not walking to logan's use and i'm not walking sixty minutes use
i'm no longer at c.b.s. on that they've got a lot to deal with this is not a way to do their problems you asked me the difference between that situation in which they have acknowledged that when they they had a problem witness all account i told me near the end of his life that he was disappointed it was. an ordeal and you certainly felt when they did the fiftieth anniversary of j.f.k.'s death and tend to airbrush you out when you reported from dallas so many reports on that scene in that area and you feel if you finally you know what i like you any do you want to start of the grass was a great day and i said you have his work and i love it and all of that happens leaders of the day once i do i do think that. we need to see when it comes to history they can airbrush me out of the pictures they present when it comes to the history the
news organizations and be trying to change history and the c.b.s. news history is whether they now like me or not like me who there doesn't you go through just this coming year and a version of tiananmen square in which we were at the union square the civil rights movement which i covered. not to mention the kennedy assassination so to try to change history and that's very serious what they do to me doesn't matter all right you've done a lot to get a story including i told you tried heroin back in one thousand nine hundred eighty five right so you would cover that as a you would understand since i've tried pot i like potter effect i got a friend to smoke a because i thought i would start smoking again but part was i thought a part should be legal i've said that before always heroin or iran's older or different thing. this is the scene is the houston police station in one nine hundred fifty five i'm covering the police beat heroin and nobody really knew what
heroin was my recollection is they had arrested some musicians it into town and they were talking about a trojan with heroin what is heroin i work in the radio stations or is it when you want to do and say well we don't know we've never tried it so what would you do it for me this would not happen today and you can say it was a damn fool thing for me to do but this is what happened between us and what it was like of the number one otherworldly is the best way i can describe it i can also say it gave me a three or four day headache afterward and i came out of it saying myself i don't know what he what he sees in this stuff and i know i never want to face it again and never did it it isn't getting correct on the internet where on the internet. where you know it's a wallace where's it all going well where's your new words are going but it's part of the reality and going to be part of reality for a long time to come you know we went through in terms of journalism but. also the society we went through the print age of newspapers that gave way to the radio era radio era gave way to the television era now the television iran might have been
used in the way to the internet era doesn't mean it's going to replace television more than television replaced radio but the internet is the future when anybody likes it or not now i have to think that overall in the main the internet is a force for good information education edition for years as they have its problems yes one of them being that with anonymity you can smear your neighbor or anybody else nobody can tell her that but nonetheless and if it isn't already true larry i think it's already true but if it isn't a truth now that most people get most of their news from the internet it soon will be particularly young people know that them so people don't read a visit all under the age of forty other it's only will depend on newspapers by and large for most of the news noted and on television or radio they go to the internet that's where it is yeah but the young they grow up and the old get older and leave us what happens to newspapers in twenty years they are around i think they'll be
around the again having said i'm an optimist i understand the argument that they're finished i don't think so any more than normal going to remember radio came in everybody's that was in newspapers or that is where they were vanished when television came in is that both radio and television if it doesn't work out that way i think newspapers will be around i think their content will be more it will be longer longer form it is now because people who want longer form news reports and information good newspapers you'll miss the old days of free networks and p.b.s. . should of course i do something will say that journalism we have twenty four hour news but the journalism was better than that there are no more rose now. i'm not sure that's true and i'm not sure on the best person to judge it would have to go you know i'm a i'm a child of the thirty's forty's fifty's sixty's and seventy's i do agree that edward r. murrow stands alone this is one of the problems i had with walter cronkite numb i'm
sorry for the way cronkite who was of a vital icon and a legend but marone was the founding strength of electronic journalism the know it as we know it i don't think it a one of his matched moros the quality to sustain quality of his journalism but a model vice enough to say listen the golden age was back when i was doing it back in the sixty's and seventy's there are a lot of good journalism out of the way in fact the three anchors at a.b.c. c.b.s. n.b.c. a very good one to a great all for him first rate first rate and the newscasts are first rate but they're not many people as many used to watching them well i have some argue the newscast and i think overall we're over adult beverage i think the three anchors would say they probably have difficulty with it because there is so sensitive they've always been seriously to ratings and demographics but i don't think any either any one of the three network newscasts now are as hard or as hard news as
the anchors would like them to believe that they'll have to speak speak for themselves did you run a tough ship and seen you the managing editor i was so was your your newscast there's anyone out there in whatever come down from above than say don't run those . basically you know c.b.s. at that time i can't speak for you know the deal was i was an anchor and managing editor of the t.v. years which meant i had to call on every story it was a collegial process i would ask a lot of other people's opinion but in the end i decided what went in the broadcast and what didn't now after the broadcast as over i was accountable plenty of times i got hauled into the news division president's office and said then what the hell do you think you're doing are you trying to track this thing into the ditch but that's the way it worked then only there were only two occasions in the twenty four years that was anchor managing editor of the evening news that
a news division president. came anywhere close to commanding that we do something coverage one was the and you were a member of this case from the point for a second congressman. condit member there he the. killing of girl in the lantern gary renard it is very condit everybody else it was august news was late everybody was running with that story i didn't want to run with it and finally the news division president in effect that then you got to run something on this and i said it's her journalism the words she said you got to and so but by and large c.b.s. when i was there i got to make the calls on the evening news but i was accountable it was over you know i didn't like all perfectly all the obvious why did you ever come close to leaving c.b.s. of your own militia going to another network you know ted turner and well a lot of first let me correct that. in my heart of hearts you know but there were two times when i did carefully consider it. one when when roone arledge zero tried
to get me to come to a.b.c. news in one thousand eight hundred seventy nine and eighty or it was a powerful push really really when they're they've you know well if you know what i mean and then. around the two thousand i want to say in one thousand nine hundred ninety two thousand our ted turner came with an offer and quite honestly i've always wanted to work for ted i admired him from the los early on but those two times i considered but each time over money was better elsewhere and one could argue might have been better financially to go you know somewhere i've seen be as leaders tend to go my hands i understand and i had the kind of loyalty and also not just loyalty but i thought it was the best place in the world for electronic journalist to work no regrets on sure you always have regrets you know might or could've should've done there's the one thing all came she's gone. you
know i love reporting years as with to go i have a patient i have a lot of laws larry many of which you know what many of which have been exposed over the years i have a lot of wounds someone's overinflated some of them still open wounds but other gavan people who disagree with me or both like me for a reason that we do it is i have a passion for covering the news always having you say working for me going is that i actually i love to get out on a story and a big story is even better and the been out front to be in the really big story. is nothing my thing you know you kind of got it wakes up and says what's going to happen today absolutely my feet at the floor every warry i say where's the story. it was thanks to dan rather for joining me on the politicking today for my viewers out there i want to hear from you join the conversation on my facebook page and share your thoughts on twitter by tweeting at kings things and using the
politicking hash tag that's all for this week's politicking you got a surprise guest for you next week until we. got a quote for you. it's pretty tough. stay with substory. let's get this guy like you would smear that guy stead of working for the people both issues the mainstream media were pretty much on the right right stage and. they did rather well.
last time was a new alert animation scripts scare me a little bit. there is breaking news tonight and they are continuing to follow the breaking news. alexander's family cry tears of joy at a brave thing that had read arquette a court of law found alive there's a story made for a movie is playing out in real life. i think. find. i'm. all about money and i've actually fixed the politics right last. night. just to wrap.
up of the evening to you i'm having martin and this is breaking the set well here's a story that try to keep you up at night according to findings just released by the air force thirty four officers at malmstrom air force base in montana were just cut cheating on a proficiency exam at our rights are cheating on a test is it really that bad i mean we've all done it except i forgot to mention one small thing miles from houses bowled a stick missiles in the officers caught cheating we're taking a test on nuclear launch procedures but if that's not enough to make you want to cower under a table don't worry it gets worse the whole reason this cheating scandal came to light in the first place is because the air force launched an investigation into drug use among officers at the base and discovered the cheating.