Saturday Night Live Transcripts
Season 13: Episode 11
Republican Debate ’88
Pat Schroeder…..Nora Dunn
George Bush…..Dana Carvey
Bob Dole…..Dan Aykroyd
Jack Kemp…..Phil Hartman
Pat Robertson…..Al Franken
Pete Dupont…..Kevin Nealon
Announcer: Live, from the Old Curmudgeon Auditorium in Nashua, New Hampshire, it’s the.. oh, boy.. 53rd debate of the 1988 Republican Presidential candidates, sponsored tonight by the Disabled Yachtsmen of Portsland. And now, here’s your moderator, Colorado congresswoman Pat Schroeder.
Pat Schroeder: Thank you! Hi again, I’m Pat Schroeder, you know a lot of people were surprised when they heard that I was going to moderate the Republican Presidential debate, but, don’t worry, I’m not the Democratic pitbull; pitbulls don’t cry! [ laughs hysterically ] Okay.. let’s introduce our five candidates, and, please, hold your applause until the end, in fairness to Pete Dupont. Okay. George Bush, Vice-President of the United States; Jack Kemp, Congressman from New York; Pierre Dupont, former governor of Deleware; the Rev. Pat Robertson; and Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole, of Kansas. First, Vice-President Bush: your campaign attacked Sen. Dole in Iowa, calling him “mean-spirited”, and accusing his wife of financial misconduct. Obviously, this tactic didn’t work very well, and my question is, are you going to apologize?
George Bush: Well, first of all, let me say that Bob Dole and I are friends. And I never authorized a flyer that said that Bob Dole is mean-spirited, but I’m not going to disavow it, because I want to stay above the fray, on the high road. So, apologize? No. Above the fray? Yes.
Bob Dole: Can I say something here, Pat?
Pat Schroeder: Go ahead, Senator Dole.
Bob Dole: I don’t believe my good friend George Bush – he’s lying, he knows it, you know it, I know it, the people at home know it, the American people know it, we all know it. Now, it’s one thing to attack an opponent’s record in the heat of a campaign.. but when you come after an opponent’s wife, well, to me, that’s another thing! Now, my wife, Elizabeth Dole, ran the buses of this country for three years, so it’s not fair! Maybe if you have a wife of privilege, like George Bush, you don’t know that! You see, Bob Dole grw up in Kansas in a small farm town, he didn’t have the prep school education, or the sterling silverware, or the bumper pool table in the basement.. didn’t have the shower & massage with five-way adjustable heads.. or the sit-down lawnmower. Bob Dole didn’t have these things!
George Bush: Now, wait a minute, can I say something here?
Bob Dole: George, I’m not finished yet!
George Bush: Now, I’m not gonna back down..
Bob Dole: I know it, you know it, and the people here tonight know it.. the American people know it, we all know it.. Bob Dole, Republican candidate is gonna be the next President of the United States! So why don’t you just go back home to your summer home in Maine, your automatic garage door opener, your electric steak knife, and run around Kennenbunkport, Maine in your powerboat, while I take care of real issues in the White House!
George Bush: I’m not gonna stand for that, that’s a cheap shot right there!
Pat Schroeder: Please, gentlemen.. we’ll get back to you later, let’s turn to Jack Kemp. Jack, as much as anyone, you have been identified with supply-side economics. But have the supply-side caused these huge deficits, and since you’re offering simply more of the same, how od you plan to balance the budget?
Jack Kemp: Well, the whole thing boils down to leadership, Pat. You know, when I played quarterback for the old Buffalo Bills, I gave 110%, and that inspired the guys around me to give 110% or better. The same thing applies to this budget – with the proper leadership, you can get that budget to give 150%! That means that you can spend 80% on the military, 40% on education, and still have 30% left over for rebuilding our infrastructure!
Pat Schroeder: Let’s turn now to Pat Robertson. Pat?
Pat Robertson: Uh.. yes, Pat?
Pat Schroeder: [ laughs ] It’s easy to remember your name! Um.. Reverand Robertson, you bristled Monday when Tom Brokaw called you a television evangelist. Why?
Pat Robertson: Well, uh, Pat.. this is a deliberate attemt by the media to belittle me, and I’m just not gonna stand for it! I’ve been so many things besides a religious broadcaster – I’m a bnusinessman, I’m the president of the sixth largest cable TV network in the country, I’ve, uh.. I’ve mowed lawns.. I’ve been a babysitter.. I’ve, uh.. watched people’s homes while they’ve been on vacation.. I’ve been a caddy, at a country club, one of the largest country clubs in the state of Virginia.. and I think that the media, by ignoring these other positions I’ve had, and focusing on twenty-five odd years of my hosting an evangelical show, I think that’s just unfair, and it’s just religious bigotry!
Bob Dole: Now, come on, Pat, that’s jsut a load of bunk! You know, and I know, that you’re an old Bible-thumping, revival show con artist from way back, who claim to heal people. I’ll tell you something, Pat Robertson – you turn to me and heal my right arm, and I’ll be glad to step aside and let you be President of the United States!
George Bush: Pat, that last comment is what people are talking about when they say that Bob Dole is mean-spirited and wicked-tempered! You don’t want a man like Bob Dole, a hot head, in the White House with his finger on the nuclear button!
Bob Dole: Now, George Bush, don’t you call me wicked-tempered! I saw you slap a Senate page once, slap a page right to the ground – and a female one, at that!
George Bush: Yeah, she had it coming!
Pat Schroeder: Gentlemen, please.. please, gentlemen. Let’s now turn to Pete Dupont. Pete, you’ve been running on what you call “Damn Good Ideas”, like privatizing Social Security. Um.. they didn’t exactly catch on in Iowa. How exactly are the people of New Hampshire responding to your idea that teenagers should be tested for drugs before they can get a driver’s license?
Pete Dupont: Well, they love it, Pat, they do. They understand that it’s a damn good idea to link the privilege of driving with being drug-free. In fact, I’ve decided to expand the idea to Social Security. Now, I say tell our senior citizens, “You do drugs, you don’t get your Social Security check.” I mean, it’s just that simple.
Bob Dole: Can I say something, Pat? I don’t know what my good friend Pierre Dupont – and that’s your name; come on, it’s Pierre, not Pete, don’t go around telling people your name’s Pete when it’s Pierre – PIerre, I don’t know what you know about Social Security. I mean, Bob Dole didn’t grow up with a 150-foot yacht, I didn’t have the convertible for graduation, the sterling silver cocktail shaker, or the machine that tears the tennis balls at you..
George Bush: Now, wait a minute, wait a minute! Now, I’m getting sick of this! Why don’t you pick on someone your own size! I’m not gonna let you pick on my friend, Pierre, here! Noew, come on, Bob! You’re a millionaire, and I’m not sure all that money was made on the up-and-up!
Bob Dole: George, how would you like this pen stuck right in your neck?!
Pat Schroeder: Gentlemen, please..
George Bush: I’d like to see you try!
Bob Dole: I could take you with my one good arm, George Bush, and you know that! In a fair fight, you could use two!
Pat Schroeder: Please, gentlemen.. Gentlemen, we are nearing the end, and I’d like to ask one question and address it to each of you: you are all articulate and attracive candidates, but only one of you can win the Presidential nomination. Now, starting with Gov. Dupont, would you accept the second spot on the Republican ticket?
Pete Dupont: Uh, no, Pat, I have no interest in being the Vice-President. I don’t really want to spend the next four years going to funerals.
Pat Schroeder: Congressman Kemp?
Jack Kemp: Pat, absolutely not. I’ve been a quarterback, I have no interest in being the waterboy.
Pat Schroeder: Pat Robertson?
Pat Robertson: Uh, Pat, the anser is no. I’ve had so many different jobs, frankly, being called the Vice-President would make me as angry as being called a TV evangelist!
Pat Schroeder: Sen. Dole?
Bob Dole: Well, Pat, I think the people know the Vice-Presidency, to me, is just the lowest form of political exist! I think the only person I can think of who’s spineless enough to want to job is my good friend, George Bush!
Pat Schroeder: Mr. Bush?
George Bush: Well, Pat, I intedn to be the Presidential nominee of this party – let’s make that clear! But am I gonna stand here and rule out the Vice-Presidency? No! I’m the only one with the guts to say so. Why? Beause I think I make a damn good Vice-President! Because I’ve been there, I’ve done it! For eight years, and I could do it for eight more!
Pat Schroeder: Well, thank all of you for joining us. Remember, Tuesday is Primary Day, so all of you here in New Hampshire, remember: Vote Democrat! [ laughs ] Just kidding! No, not really! [ laughs again ] Good night, and thank all of you!
Bob Dole: Can I say something, Pat? Can I say something?
Pat Schroeder: Sen. Dole?
Bob Dole: “Live, from New York, it’s Saturday Night!”