Commentator Bill O’Reilly scolded the Obama administration for failing issue an executive order to pay death benefits to the families of deceased servicemen and women during the partial government shutdown.
O’Reilly vented to Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume on Thursday’s “The O’Reilly Factor” on the Fox News Channel, directing his ire toward Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney:
HUME: The point being that this, it seems to me, could have been interpreted to say, “Yes, we can pay these benefits.” They could have been paid.
O’REILLY: Hume, you don’t give it to the pinheaded lawyer. You have the president write an executive order that this is funded. Nobody’s going to challenge it, OK? And it’s funded. You take the stupid lawyers out of it. That’s what you do if you’re a leader and that’s what this is all about, this military thing. This is about leadership. Where’s Chuck Hagel? Have you seen Chuck around? Where is he? Where? What interview has he done? Where is he? Where is this man? The Department of Defense Secretary — where is he? This guy should be fired immediately. He has no right to be there. He’s lost all credibility with the military. Get out of here. You see, this is what drives me crazy. They’re not leaders. These aren’t leaders. Come on.
HUME: Bill, keep in mind what they may believe their leader, President Obama, is trying to accomplish in this shutdown. We’ve seen all this monkeyshine with the National Park Service and the closing of open-air monuments and things that are plainly unnecessary designed to make the government shutdown hit as hard as possible. It is not inconceivable that this was part of that. Now, I’m not saying –
O’REILLY: If it was, then President Obama is in big trouble. Wait. Let me get to this.
HUME: Bill, I can’t prove that.
O’REILLY: I know you can’t. That’s why I’ve not engaged in that because it’s speculation. Here’s what’s not speculation — Carney, what’s the matter with Carney? He knows when President Obama knew about it. So, he’s stonewalling. You covered Nixon. You know what the Nixon people did. Carney’s doing exactly what they did.
HUME: Well, if I were Carney — look, there’s a distinct possibility that Carney didn’t find out because they knew he’d asked the question and they presumed the answer would be embarrassing to the president so he deliberately — press secretaries do that all the time.
O’REILLY: Well, then get out of there. It’s not his job to stonewall. Hagel, Carney, all of them — go. You don’t want to serve the people, go. You can make a lot of money in the private sector. You know, I’m tired of this.
HUME: I’m confident you are and that a lot of other Americans are, too.
O’REILLY: All right. Well, I’m sorry I got a little out of hand, but I am really hot about this. I want these weasels to knock it off.
HUME: Bill, you and I are charter members of the surrender and RINO caucus. So, I know you’re not angry with me.
O’REILLY: No, I’m not angry with you. I want Hagel. I want Hagel. I want him.
A private charity offered to pay the benefits on Wednesday until the Republicans and Democrats reached a budget deal.