06k: Jeremy Piven / AFI
Chris Matthews.....Darrell Hammond
Hillary Rodham Clinton.....Amy Poehler
Chris Matthews: I've waited years for this, but Senator Hillary Clinton has finally agreed to sit down with me one on one on the day she announces for president. I'm Chris Matthews, let's play Hardball.
[opening montage rolls, then returns on Chris Matthews]
Chris Matthews: Welcome to Hardball, I'm Chris Matthews. [applause] With us here in the studio for the first time ever on the show, I'm pleased to be joined by the junior senator from the state of New York, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Hillary Clinton: Thank you.
Chris Matthews: Senator, may I say, you're great.
Hillary Clinton: Thank you Chris.
Chris Matthews: Now, in order to book you I had to agree some ground rules which, I'll be honest, I'm not totally crazy about. But, as we say in the business, you're a tough cat, and you're great.
Hillary Clinton: Again, Chris, you're too kind.
Chris Matthews: No, no, you're too kind. And as I've mentioned already, you're also great. But this is Hardball, I've gotta ask you some questions.
Hillary Clinton: Uh-oh. [she laughs forcibly] Here it comes. [giggles]
Chris Matthews: This one was actually written by a member of your staff. You're somehow able to juggle so many demanding roles: Senator, wife, mother, author, jurist, statesman, philosopher, teacher, inventor, warrior, astrophysicist, explorer, stunt pilot, deep sea diver, motor cross racer. I guess I don't have a question exactly, except to say: You're great.
Hillary Clinton: Gosh, Chris, thank you. You flatter me.
Chris Matthews: Now, I have some questions, too. Is it alright if they're about Iraq?
Hillary Clinton: That depends. May I see them? [she gets cards with tough questions and tries to choose one] No. [skip card] No. [skip card] No. [finally chooses one] This one's okay.
Chris Matthews: Along with senator Joe Lieberman you're probably the leading democratic supporter of the war in Iraq, but this week you reversed your position. What changed your mind?
Hillary Clinton: As you know Chris, I've just returned from from a fact-finding tour of Iraq, and what I saw there made me realize we were on the wrong course.
Chris Matthews: What is it you saw in Iraq?
Hillary Clinton: This. [she points a newspaper graphic] It's from the International Herald Tribune
Chris Matthews: [Newspaper graphic goes up] Hillary's Support of War Hurts Her with Party Base; Obama Surges to Lead in Latest Poll of Democrats [shouts] That's not good. And this newspaper is what you saw in Iraq?
Hillary Clinton: Exactly. It came free in my hotel room along with U.S.A. Today.
Chris Matthews: So, what's your new plan for Iraq?
Hillary Clinton: Chris, this week I'll introduce a resolution calling for a greatly speeded up withdrawal of U.S. forces with a specific trigger mechanism. For every 1 point increase in senator Obama's pole numbers, 7,500 U.S. troops will have to be withdrawn. Of course, if his pole numbers should collapse, or, if he drops out of the race, the troops can stay in Iraq.
Chris Matthews: I get it, but what about those democratic primary voters who are still upset about your initial vote for the war?
Hillary Clinton: Chris, I think most democrats know me. They understand that my support for the war was always insincere. Of course, knowing what we know now, that you could vote against the war and still be elected president, I would never have pretended to support it.
Chris Matthews: Uh-huh.
Hillary Clinton: I mean, for heaven's sake, look at my record. I don't even support necessary wars!
Chris Matthews: But a lot of democrats like the fact that Obama was always against the war.
Hillary Clinton: He seems to take positions based on studying an issue and then following his convictions. Which is perfectly alright. But suppose he were to go to Iraq and conclude that the war was necessary, after all, he might decide to support it. Can we really trust someone like that?
Chris Matthews: I never looked at it that way.
Hillary Clinton: Whereas with me, the democratic base knows I'm not going to reverse my stance on the war a second time. Unless, of course, they want me to.
Chris Matthews: Does it bother you that Obama gets such a free ride from the media?
Hillary Clinton: Goodness gracious. Chris, that's something I can't worry about. Though, I will say, it's interesting that the media constantly refers to him as black. When we all know, and let's be honest, he's only half-black.
Chris Matthews: True?
Hillary Clinton: I mean, I'm half-black. And a woman. But so what? I think voters want to hear about the issues.
Chris Matthews: You're half black? I never realized.
Hillary Clinton: Well, it's something I don't wear on my sleeve. I only recently found that out.
Chris Matthews: Of course, your critics might say, you don't really look at all black.
Hillary Clinton: You know, Chris, isn't it interesting how when a male senator says he's half-black he's immediately taken at his word. But when a female senator says the same thing, suddenly she has to prove it.
Chris Matthews: The old double standard.
Hillary Clinton: Exactly.
Chris Matthews: Does Obama have the experience to be president?
Hillary Clinton: [laughs] Heavens to mergatroid, Chris. I'm not gonna comment on that. As to his experience and his hatred of women, the voters will have to judge.
Chris Matthews: You think he hates women?
Hillary Clinton: Well, Chris, I think the fact that knowing I'm running for president he would deliberately form an exploratory committee to run himself in the same election, when he has to know he'd be running against me, well, I mean, jimaneecricket! At the very least, it shows a certain lack of respect for women.
Chris Matthews: But in fairness to senator Obama, until today when you've been asked if you were running for president, you've always denied it.
Hillary Clinton: [ angry ] What? [ beep ] that [ beep ]. He knew I was running for president. [ beep ] [ beep ]. Is there anyone in the [ beep ] country who didn't know I was running for president?! I've been running for president since I was 5. Are you [beep]-tarded? [ the audience cheers wildly, Hillary gets relaxed ] I'm sorry, Chris. It's just that getting elected president is something I feel passionately about.
Chris Matthews: That really comes through. And on that note, we're about out of time. I want to thank you senator for graciously agreeing to this interview. But I did have one last favor to ask. You're so great. It'd be just a huge thrill for me you know, to kinda open the show with you, you know, sorta, joint, sorta opening. Is there a chance...
Hillary Clinton: Aww... I don't think so. [shouts] Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!!!!!!!!
Submitted by: Caleb Rojas Castillo