Read transcripts of previous shows - MSNBC Transcripts - MSNBC.com July 5: Activist Cindy Sheehan, who is leading a hunger strike against the war in Iraq, tells Norah O’Donnell she would rather live under Hugo Chavez than George W. Bush.
O‘DONNELL: You speak very passionately about your cause. You lost a son in Iraq. We honor his service and sacrifice. But you‘ve been traveling the world—Scotland, Spain, Venezuela, Ireland, Australia, Austria—how does that help the cause when, again, you‘re around the world trashing the president, calling him a terrorist, calling him worse than Osama bin Laden. How do you honestly expect to affect change with those types of remarks? SHEEHAN: Well, it‘s really important too that the people in the world know that there are Americans on their side, because as anti-Bush sentiment goes up in the world, anti-American sentiment goes up also. And people—I‘ve had hundreds of people around the world tell me before you, we thought all Americans supported George Bush. And it‘s important for us, people of different countries in different borders, to reach out to one another to work to force our leaders to solve problems peacefully. And this is really important. O‘DONNELL: But why go stand side-by-side by Hugo Chavez in Venezuela? Why do that? I mean, it sounds like—would you rather live under Hugo Chavez than George Bush? SHEEHAN: Yes. You know, Hugo Chavez is not a dictator like you introduced him. He‘s been democratically elected eight times, and he‘s not anti-American. O‘DONNELL: Saddam Hussein was democratically elected. SHEEHAN: Yes, hold on a second. He is not anti-American. He has helped the poor people of America. He has sent aid to New Orleans. He has sold heating oil to disadvantaged people in America, in the United States of America at low cost, and he—the people of his country love him, and for us to say that we have some kind of influence over Venezuelan policy is wrong. The people of Venezuela have elected him overwhelmingly eight times, and it‘s his country, and it‘s their country and they should have the leader that they deserve, that they want.