SNL Transcripts: Sen. John McCain: 10/19/02: Hardball


 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 28: Episode 3

02c: Sen. John McCain / The White Stripes


Chris Matthews…..Darrell Hammond
John Ashcroft…..Sen. John McCain
Rebecca DeWitt…..Rachel Dratch
Harry Belefonte…..Tracy Morgan

Chris Matthews: Welcome back to “Hardball”, I’m Chris Matthews! One quick program note: next week, the Hardball College Tour continues when we come to you live from Bob Jones University with Special Guest: Coolio! The topic that night’s gonna be tax reform! But today, we’re talking about homeland security! Al-Quaeda’s chatter’s is revving up again, people in Maryland have to wear a Kevlar vest every time they go to a gas station, and every town from Buffalo to Portland’s sticky with terrorists! The only security the office of homeland security provides is the security of knowing I can’t go outside without browning my pants! When I get scared, I shout! And when I shout, I get scared! Are we safer today than we were pre-9/11? Joining us today: Associate Director for the ACLU, Rebecca DeWitt!

Rebecca DeWitt: Hello, Chris.

Chris Matthews: Bor-ing! Also joining us: Attorney General of the United States, John Ashcroft!

John Ashcroft: [ somewhat gruff ] Thanks for having me, Chris.

Chris Matthews: I had to! I was afraid you’d arrest me and put me in a camp! And, finally: he made headlines last week when he called Colin Powell a sell-out, comparing him to a slave serving his master, Harry Belefonte! Harry, welcome!

Harry Belefonte: Welcome? Welcome? What are you, some kind of slave master?

Chris Matthews: Aw, Belefonte! Crazy, right off the bat! I love it! Attorney General, we’re gonna start with you! How do we make this country feel safe again?

John Ashcroft: Chris. Security starts with vigilence. As Americans, we will never truly be free. Until each and every one of us is afraid of being throw in a jail. But thanks to the Tips program, we’ve been able to detain tens of thousands of potential American terrorists for months at a time, for little or no reason. Just like the Founding Fathers dreamed!

Chris Matthews: Rebecca DeWitt, what Ashcroft just said was pretty crazy – can you beat it?!

Rebecca DeWitt: Chris, we’re living in a police state. Most of the people detained under Mr. Ashcroft’s orders haven’t been charged with a crime or given access to legal counsel. The Taliban prisoners at Guantanamo Bay are being denied their basic human rights. They can’t practice their religion, they’re not allowed access to their weapons, they can’t even confer with their terrorist leader! It’s appalling!

Chris Matthews: Wow! An impressive display of insanity! Harry Belefonte, keep this crazy train rolling!

Harry Belefonte: Chris, I’m gonna say something that a lot of people are afraid to say: Osama bin Laden is a Uncle Tom!

Chris Matthews: [ shaking his head with wonder ] Good God! I can’t even figure out who that’s offensive to! Mr. Ashcroft, what plans does the Justice Department have to make our country safer?

John Ashcroft: We’ve got some real great stuff in the works. There’s one plan that would make the Arab language, or anything that sounds like it, illegal. In addition, we’ve gone back into ten years of old files to traxk down terrorist sleeper agents! Foremost amongst them: Shaquille O’Neal.

Chris Matthews: [ chuckling ] Shaquille O’Neal! Are you serious!

John Ashcroft: Yes! We learned that he was in a Middle Eastern-flavored movie, entitled “Kazaam!” I watched this film last week, and from what I can gather, it is some kind of terrorist training video!

Chris Matthews: How about it, Rebecca DeWitt? Should we be throwing genie-portrayed basketball players in jail?

Rebecca DeWitt: Chris, every society needs police. But who will police the police? My idea: terrorists! Give the terorists guns and badges, and the ability to arrest law enforcement and military personnel. That way, there are checks and balances.

Chris Matthews: Dear Lord. Belefonte! Hit me with a quick one!

Harry Belefonte: The war in Iraq is in a minstrel show!

Chris Matthews: Fantastic! Another!

Harry Belefonte: Winston Churchill was a house Negro!

Chris Matthews: One more time!

Harry Belefonte: Poodles are the black man of the dog world!

Chris Matthews: Whoa-oa! [ laughs uproariously ] I’m never gonna get tired of this! Final thoughts, Mr. Ashcroft! Whom in this country can truly be safe?

John Ashcroft: Every American citizen. Every man, woman and child has a bar code tattooed on their neck, and a chip in their head that responds to this remote control! [ holds up remote control ]

Chris Matthews: Jiminy Christmas! Rebecca DeWitt!

Rebecca DeWitt: Chris, if you bake one cake, it doesn’t make you a baker; if you paint one painting, it doesn’t make you a painter; but if you blow up one embassy, it automatically makes you a terrorist! [ laughing ] It’s hypocritical!

Chris Matthews: That just might be the dumbest thing I ever heard! Harry Belefonte! don’t let me down!

Harry Belefonte: Pokemon is a slave trader; Pikachu is a slave master!

Chris Matthews: [ singing ] “Craz-o. Cra-a-az-o. Belafonte is a crazy mofo!” [ laughs ] Join us tomorrow, when Shaquille O’Neal joins us live via satelite from a prison at Guantanamo Bay! I’m Chris Matthews! Dabba da “Hahbah”!

SNL Transcripts

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Author: Don Roy King

Don Roy King has directed fourteen seasons of Saturday Night Live. That work has earned him ten Emmys and fourteen nominations. Additionally, he has been nominated for fifteen DGA Awards and won in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.

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