An Interview With Phyllis Schlafly
John Hawkins:: You’ve been a big name in the Conservative movement since 1964. How much ground do you think we have gained since then with the electorate? In particular, why do you think we’ve had so much success since 1980?
Phyllis Schlafly:: The principal reason for our success is that we invented the pro-family movement, attracted believers out of their churches and synagogues, got them to work together with people of other faiths for a political goal they shared, and then supported a leader in Ronald Reagan.
John Hawkins:: Now that the GOP controls the Presidency and Congress, what do you think we need to do maintain and expand our gains?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Stick to our conservative pro-family principles. Continue to give the voters a choice not an echo. Develop new Reaganesque leaders.
John Hawkins:: As a lawyer, how badly do you think tort reform in general and loser-pays legislation specifically is needed in the United States? Why so?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Tort reform is badly needed. The awards are outrageous, especially asbestos and tobacco. Meanwhile, the people who really need such awards, the kids damaged by vaccines, can’t get money damages.
John Hawkins:: Do you think we should be doing more in this country to help immigrants assimilate? If so, can you suggest some things we should be doing?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Yes, require them to learn English and stop pandering to foreign languages. We must not become a bilingual country.
John Hawkins:: The American public seems to be very concerned about illegal immigration and the security of our borders. But the Bush administration and Congress don’t seem to be serious about the issue. Why do you think that is and what can we do make Washington get serious about this issue?
Phyllis Schlafly:: The Democrats want immigrants and illegals because they think they will get their votes. The Republicans want them because they want the cheap labor.
John Hawkins:: The Bush administration favors amnesty for illegal aliens. To me, that seems to be a terrible idea that rewards criminal behavior and will encourage a new wave of illegal aliens to come to the US. Can you explain why the Bush administration seems to be backing this policy and what your opinion of it is?
Phyllis Schlafly:: The Bush Administration and the RNC want to pander to the Hispanic vote. I wonder what they are smoking. They are not going to get it. Amnesty is “sheer lunacy.”
John Hawkins:: I noticed that: Jayna Davis: was talking about the Oklahoma City Bombing at your 2002 Eagle Forum Leadership Conference 2002. I’ve heard more than a few people who say that they believe there was a Middle-East connection to the bombing although I have yet to see any evidence that has really convinced me. What’s your opinion?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Jayna Davis’s evidence is very convincing. The government’s secrecy is disturbing.
John Hawkins:: Theoretically, let’s say that we’re able depose Saddam Hussein relatively quickly and with minimal casualties on our side. What do you think our next steps in the war on terrorism should be?
Phyllis Schlafly:: That’s Bush’s job. Why don’t we hear discussion of post-war plans?
John Hawkins:: How do you think the Bush administration is handling the situation with North Korea? What do you see as the ultimate resolution of that conflict?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Unclear. We don’t want another Korean War. Been there, done that.
John Hawkins:: I know you were a big supporter of Napster. In fact, the Eagle forum even filed an amicus brief in Napster case that went before the 9th Circuit Court. Do you think the courts need to stay out of file sharing on the internet? Can you explain your reasoning?
Phyllis Schlafly:: My: amicus brief: explains my position on Napster. Even more important is my brief in Eldred v. Ashcroft, the copyright case. I think the Supreme Court made a big mistake in this decision, and the fault is largely the plaintiff’s lawyer who didn’t make the conservative arguments against perpetual copyrights. I believe in the First Amendment.
John Hawkins:: The Senate seem to be moving perilously close to signing up for the “United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)”. Do you think ratifying that treaty would be a bad idea? Why so?
Phyllis Schlafly:: It would be a Terrible idea. (It’s) A global ERA and much, much worse. I can’t believe the Senate will ratify.
John Hawkins:: I thought section 3 of the Homeland Security Bill which develops something called “Total Information Awareness” is quite disturbing. Here’s a quote from the Eagle Forum on the bill, “DARPA is developing a system called Total Information Awareness, which will collect and data-mine vast amounts of personal information from the public, including telephone records, bank records, magazine subscriptions, medical records, travel data, etc.” How dangerous do you think this is?
Phyllis Schlafly:: It’s very dangerous. We don’t want Big Brother Government.
John Hawkins:: Theoretically, let’s say you could get any five pieces of legislation passed that you wanted. These could either bills that are already in the pipeline in Congress or that you could write yourself. What pieces of legislation would you pass?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Get out of the schools. Withdraw jurisdiction from federal courts over Ten Commandments and Pledge of Allegiance. Prohibit all federal money going to states that perform abortions or allow euthanasia. Completely restructure health insurance to stop employer control and start employee control. Prohibit a national identity number and the intermingling of databases.
John Hawkins:: What do you think of some of the women who’ve become prominent in the Conservative movement in the last few years? For example, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, and Laura Ingraham?
Phyllis Schlafly:: Wonderful. They are great! All of them are talented and articulate.
John Hawkins:: NOW is certainly getting less attention that they used to. In fact, other than the entirely media driven controversy over Augusta National, NOW has almost dropped off of the radar screen lately. Do you think groups like NOW are largely irrelevant at this point?
Phyllis Schlafly:: NOW and other groups became irrelevant when they stuck by Clinton despite his disgusting treatment of women.
John Hawkins:: Tell us a little bit about your new book “Feminist Fantasies,” that’s coming out in February.
Phyllis Schlafly:: Read my December Phyllis Schlafly Report. Available from Eagle Forum, Alton, IL 62002 or at: EagleForum.
John Hawkins:: Are there political websites out there that you could recommend for our readers?
John Hawkins:: Thank you for your time.