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MSNBC's Sharpton Accuses FNC's O'Reilly of 'Hypocrisy'

Media Research CenterOn Friday's PoliticsNation show, MSNBC host Al Sharpton reacted to FNC's Bill O'Reilly criticizing him the night before, as the FNC host had called out Sharpton for taking out of context his contention that some who receive food stamps are "parasites" who take advantage of the system, and divulged that he had made a donation to one of Sharpton's charities in the past.

After having tagged O'Reilly with "hypocrisy" in a plug before the segment, Sharpton brought up the donation from O'Reilly and declared:

What are we supposed to think about a man who privately is generous, but who says the most vile and divisive things in public? Why would Bill quietly donate that money to my group while loudly telling his right-wing audience that this is what he thinks of me?

After playing a few clips of O'Reilly, Sharpton suggested that the FNC host would regard people benefiting from Sharpton's charity as "parasites." Sharpton:

This is the worst kind of gutter talk. But if Bill really thinks that about me, why did he agree to speak at a conference for my civil rights group, the National Action Network, a few years ago? Look, there he is at a convention for the grievance industry. And why would Bill give a so-called race hustler $25,000 to help the poor at Christmas? And why would he write a check to help people that he's called "parasites" who just want "stuff"?

Sharpton had previously criticized O'Reilly's use of the word "parasites" without recounting that the FNC host was referring to a report about people who abuse the welfare system.

Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Friday, August 16, PoliticsNation on MSNBC:

AL SHARPTON: Up next, it's a special edition of "Reply Al." my response to Bill O'Reilly and a pattern of hypocrisy.

(...)

SHARPTON: It's time for a special edition of "Reply Al." On his show last night, Bill O'Reilly was apparently offended that I called him out for labeling some of America's poor as, quote, "parasites." So he tried to defend himself by revealing something I've never shared with the public either, that he once donated money to my nonprofit to help provide gifts and foods to kids at Christmas.

BILL O'REILLY, FNC: So I gave Sharpton a $25,000 donation to provide the gifts and the food. I never mentioned it because it wasn't necessary to mention it. But now it is, to prove exactly what kind of person Al Sharpton is.

SHARPTON: Bill doesn't realize it, but this story actually reveals what kind of person he is. It says more about him than it does me, because Bill gave that money privately to someone he's publicly called, quote, "a race hustler," working in what he calls "the grievance industry." That's the term that he uses for civil rights work that I do. What are we supposed to think about a man who privately is generous, but who says the most vile and divisive things in public? Why would Bill quietly donate that money to my group while loudly telling his right-wing audience that this is what he thinks of me?

O'REILLY CLIP #1: -and Al Sharpton and the grievance industry strike back. That is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points Memo."

O'REILLY CLIP #2: What the grievance industry does want is to divide the country along racial lines.

O'REILLY CLIP #3: The tide may be turning against the Sharptons and the race hustlers in general.

O'REILLY CLIP #4: The race hustlers and their sympathizers have descended into the gutter.

SHARPTON: This is the worst kind of gutter talk. But if Bill really thinks that about me, why did he agree to speak at a conference for my civil rights group, the National Action Network, a few years ago? Look, there he is at a convention for the grievance industry. And why would Bill give a so-called race hustler $25,000 to help the poor at Christmas? And why would he write a check to help people that he's called "parasites" who just want "stuff"?

O'REILLY CLIP #5: The Obama administration is encouraging parasites to come out and, you know, take as much as they can.

O'REILLY CLIP #6: -so the majority of blacks want money spent to level the playing field, to redistribute income from the white establishment.

O'REILLY CLIP #7: There are 50 percent of the voting public who want stuff. They want things. And who is going to give them things? President Obama.

SHARPTON: The sad truth, the sad truth is the good that Bill did with the check he wrote is filed away by the vile and hateful things he says on the air night after night. Bill is playing to the extremists in his audience, and it shows. It shows what's wrong with the right wing today. They can't disagree without being disagreeable. They have to make personal attacks on anyone who has a different point of view. And it's not just me, it's true of everyone, from Sandra Fluke to President Obama. That needs to change.

America is better than this. And I hope my friends on the right are better than that, too. All right, that's enough for tonight. That's it for tonight's show. I hope everyone has a great weekend, including you, Bill.

-- Brad Wilmouth is a news analyst at the Media Research Center