tv Piers Morgan Tonight CNN September 1, 2012 12:00am-1:00am PDT
it was a little different. he said it says cruz will not run for re-election if he breaks his campaign promises which he lists in the letter. we're going to have much more on that. but in the meantime, have a wonderful weekend. tonight, the last word on the republican convention. my candid conversations with chris christie and jeb bush. >> we need to tell peep the truth. we need to make hard choices. we need to implement that now. >> i love my country. i see decline in the future unless we begin to solve these problems. >> john and cindy mccain. tough talk on republican todd akin. >> he should no longer be the candidate of the republican party of missouri. >> rick and karen santorum. >> barack obama believes the government should do more and you cannot trust the private sector. >> condoleezza rice. >> what they really wanted was you as vp. >> first of all, nobody wanted
that, especially me. >> and the mitt romney you don't know from his sons. >> you say he seems laid back? is that what you said? >> yes, his hair is too perfect. >> this is "piers morgan tonight." good evening. i'm here at the cnn grill. the republican convention has been wrapping up. tonight we begin with faith, family and mitt romney. today, they're more kable, more down to earth. with their mother ann, just might be his secret weapons. >> can you do it without the ear piece in? >> no one was giving me information. we're at a crucial stage. your father is within breathing
distance of his white house. how are you coping as his sons with all the negativity that begins to pour down on what is your dad's head? >> you don't worry about the negativity. you keep rolling with it. and get your own message out there. which is a positive vision for what my dad believes america can get back to. that's his message. he and paul ryan will do everything they can to break through and deliver that message to the american people. >> when you see an attack ad that effectively accused your father of being responsible for a woman's death, what do you really feel? be honest. >> some of these go too far clearly. at the end of the day the real aty is, the people who know my dad best, the people who are
supporting him. and the people who know him the least. at the end of the day, we know who he is. so we do let it roll off our back a bit. >> matt, lots of emotive issues around the republican race this year. a lot of the social issues came to the fore. you guys are all mormons obviously. when you meet young people, they say the problem with the republican party today is they don't like the apparent intolerance. over gay rights. you're young guys. how do you feel? >> you know, obviously, we're not running for president so our positions don't really matter. one thing i can tell you about him and about us is our faith teaches us to love everybody.
that's really first and foremost. you love everybody. as far as policies are concerned, we all believe that family is important. how that exactly shakes out in the issues, that's up to him to decide. we all believe the same things. >> what i'm getting is, some of the language. some of the language can be almost bordering on bigoted. it tends to be a bit generational, that. sometimes the language was less emotive? >> i think my dad's very passionate in his views. he also understands people have other opinions. this race i don't think is going to come down to social issues. we have 23 million americans who are out of work.
an economy that's stalling. it's going to come down to who can turn the economy around, get things moving again. people trust my dad on that a lot more than they do president obama. >> from your point of view, what are the great assets of being a mormon? >> in' few brief sentences i guess, for me at least it's taught me great values in my life. how to live my life. how to treat other people. how to live your life and treat others. >> you don't take drugs, you're strapping young guys, do you ever feel like, damn it, wish i hadn't been mormons? >> these are all things that have been great blessings in my life. it's been wonderful for me.
>> do you think family values is really important? do you think it's a grt asset? >> i hope so. they're core principles of our faith. we're very proud of that. >> let's talk taxation. a lot of people say come on, the old man should just release more of his financial records. clear up how much tax he's paid. >> he's paid his taxes. this is a gimmick by the obama campaign. at the end of the day, we have $16 trillion in debt. these are not things that really matter in the grand scheme of things. they want to use the taxes as a gimmick. really the big issue is the
economy. >> matt, how hard is it to be the son of a guy -- running for president, with all the scrutiny, and he's stinking rich whichever way you dress it up. how hard is that? >> this is the game of politics. we're prepared for that. but it is tough. he did a great job of making that money. nothing really -- we don't take anything for granted. we know there are a lot of people out there that are really struggling. >> president obama's trying to make it a disqualifier to be successful. that how disqualifies you from being able to be a good president. obviously, president obama has not had a business career and has not had that opportunity but wants to point to my dad's success as being somehow
disqualifying. >> can you guarantee to the american people he's got nothing to hide about his finances? >> i know my dad. i know what he stands for. i know his value system. he is the most honest guy i know. complete integrity. he just wants this to be about the economy. let's get down to the real issues. this is a guy who spent his time in congress really tackling the issues. at least he's trying to make a difference. and my dad's doing the same thing. he really wants to make a difference. >> tagg, were you concerned when your dad picked a running mate who looks like one of his own sons? >> i think paul ryan was a brilliant pick. there were a lot of political reasons to pick other people. my dad picked the person he thought would do the best job. so he didn't pick paul ryan for political reasons, he picked him
because he was the right person to pick. >> what a bold move. i think people were taken back by the fact that it was quite adashs. >> he's not going to worry about the day to day back and forth. he's going to do what he thinks is the right thing to do. and bring the american people along and have them get behind him and lead forward and fix the problems we're facing now. >> one word which is a great description of your dad. the one who's already gone before you has already said it, you can't use the same word. ben. >> frugal. >> frugal. >> qualified. >> qualified. >> generous. >> generous. >> father. >> father. >> i said integrity on an earlier episode. i'll say loving as well. >> that's a nice way to end. >> father first, how about that? >> father can often be the one thing that is a great vote winner. it's been a great pleasure to meet you.
great to see you. craig. ben. next, i sit down with the keynote speak, the irrepressible governor chris christie who as you'll see occasionally rather heated conversation. >> leadership delivers. leadership counts. w that honey nut cheerios has oats that can help lower cholesterol? and it tastes good? sure does! wow. it's the honey, it makes it taste so... well, would you look at the time... what's the rush? be happy. be healthy.
no holds barred keynote speech stirred up plenty of controversy. he was pointed in his criticism of president obama. if you were going to tear down the president, how would you do that? >> i've done that many times. this is a guy who i think for the last 3 1/2 years has been in a dark room looking for the light switch of leadership. there's a lot to be said about that. the fact of the matter is, i really believe that case has already been made, piers. that case has been made against the president. we need -- there's nothing new anyone's going to figure out about the president in the next 69 days. they need to find out things about our philosophy. i worked very closely with the romney campaign. they have my draft. knew what i wanted to say. they didn't change a word of my speech. >> when it comes to the president, do you think he's an honest man? >> yeah. >> you do?
>> sure. >> you don't think he misleads the american public? >> i think he misleads people in political commercials. i don't think that's breaking new ground. i generally think he's an honest person. i think he's dead wrong on policy. i think he's leading this country in the wrong direction. i don't think that means he is generally a dishonest person. >> has he been dead wrong about everything or can you find things to credit him with? >> certain areas of education policy, i agree with him. try to empower charter schools and choice around the country. i think he's been right on that. not every bit of his education policy but some of it. >> foreign policy? >> i'm not going to go through it like a check list. >> one of the allegations against the romney ryan ticket is their lack of foreign policy experience. people are a bit concerned the ticket is lacking in experience. >> i think the president romney will surround himself with an excellent cabinet, excellent advisers. a lot of foreign policy in my view, piers, is the willingness of the president to make tough
choices. i think mitt romney will make those tough choices. and he will not be confusing folks out there. he will stand with our friends and he'll stand against our adversaries. he'll get people around him. the one great thing about mitt is he's not stuck on being the smartest guy in the room. >> given that people have said, you know, why didn't chris christie talk more about mitt romney. clearly you didn't intend that from what you've told me. you know him. >> sure. >> what are the qualities maybe we're not aware of? >> this is a man with extraordinarily good heart. i watched him interact with my children. you've seen politicians interact with children. it's an abomination, right. patting them on the head like this. you know, not knowing how to deal with them. i've seen governor romney with my children, my 8-year-old and
my 11-year-old, and he's incredibly engaging with them, cares about them, makes them feel special when he's with them. this is a guy who is an engaged father, an engaged grandfather. that tells you something about his heart. >> do you want to see more of that? because i interviewed his five sons. one of them said the trouble with dad is he's always a ceo in public. he can't sort of remove that shackle of the corporate existence he had for so long. people don't see the real mitt romney they see behind closed doors. >> i hope he does because if he does the american people are going to like him and trust him. i'm convinced of that. >> when it comes to trust, this election could come down to the economy and to who believes who most about the future for solving the economy. you have an interesting experience in new jersey. you've lowered taxes and balanced budgets. unemployment has risen to the highest level since 1977. people will say, look, that's a classic argument against the republican position, right?
you've lowered taxes. you've balanced the budget. what do you say to that? >> first of all, the statistic it's the highest in 35 years is wrong. it was higher in october, november, december of 2009 than it is now. it's a bad statistic. secondly, what we're doing in new jersey is lowering the number of people who are working for the government. we're making government smaller. that's part of what we're doing. that's going to help to unleash the private sector. you'll see those numbers go down over the course of time. >> who do you blame, yourself or obama, for unemployment? >> for unemployment? >> in new jersey. >> the fact of the matter is the national economy has a huge effect on what happens in new jersey. but also i just told you, we made a concerted effort to lower the number of public employees. our government had gotten too big and too bloated. we needed to make it smaller. that's going to have an effect on those numbers. a short-term effect. the long-term effect is going to be we're going to take more money out of the government, back into the private sector. we've gone 90,000 new private sector jobs since i was elected governor. in the last 12 months, fourth
high et state in america in the creation of new private sector jobs. so new jersey comeback has begun, piers. it's going to take us a while. digging out of a heck of a hole. we're going to get there. >> people who heard your speech have been a bit critical. since this was entirely a pitch and play for him to be president, you -- you have literally no aspiration to be leader the free world? >> since last october, i've traveled to 15 different states for mitt romney. i sat -- harassment in my office for an hour that somehow mitt romney was not going to win, rick santorum was going to be the nominee. i steadfastly stood by mitt romney because i believed he would be the nominee. i think he's the best person to be president of the united states. so anybody who reads that into it just hasn't watched what i've been doing for the last year. which has been working as hard as any outsider for mitt romney and his election. i'm proud to have done it. >> governor, thank you for
jeb bush has a unique place here at the convention. he also has some advice for mitt romney. nobody probably on god's earth has a better idea of what mitt romney should do to win this election. you've been governor twice. you won two terms in florida. which going to be one of the key battlegrounds. your brother and your father were both president. he a guy who can relate to the
ordinary american in the street? >> there's two factors to this. one is that he's been reluctant to share what's in his heart and who he is. the guy's have the bark scraped off him by an opponent. who wants to change the conversation away from his economic policy. i don't know if you know, we're a battleground state so we get a lot of tv ads. you would think mitt romney is everything, you know, should be in prison for first degree something i mean because -- >> he did all this i mean i was following the trail with the republican nominee race. to be fair to barack obama and the democrats mitt romney was beating up his opponents with equal vigor on the nominee race, wasn't he, they've both been at each other? >> that's right. to answer your question about why it is that people may not relate to mitt romney, they've seen tv ads that make him into the devil incarnate and then he's not been as comfortable with showing what's in his heart
and who he is. that is what it is. >> should he have revealed more of his taxes? there are ongoing concerns about exactly how he got to be so rich? >> i think his wealth was earned. he earned it. his success should be celebrated, not be demonized. but we're living in a world where either single aspect of either single little thing scrutinized. in unfair ways. and so i'm not sure what the motivation was to do what he did but he did the same thing john mccain did and there wasn't a big outcry. two years of tax returns, you get a good sense of how he'd made his money and where he'd paid his taxes and the tithing he does which is, again, pretty remarkable. >> resolutely opposed to any new
taxes. you've been suggesting that maybe shouldn't be quite such a rigid position. there's got to be a way of getting this deficit down. >> if you get into very orthodox positions where something that may not be a tax increase is considered one by some third party. in order to get entitlement reform done which if you look at our structural fiscal deficits and they're huge, 80% of it is spending. 80% of it needs to be fixed with spending. in order to get that done, you have to find through tax reform in all likelihood or raising eligibility limits for medicare. there's a lot of things that can be done that someone might view as a tax increase. it may be an ending of an exemption of some kind.
>> is it possible to get this deficit significantly reduced from $16 trillion without some tax increase? >> it's possible, sure. you can begin to see a reduction in the deficit. you're not going to reduce the debt. and may even more if we can't grow the economy. so the job number one is grow the economy. if you grew it 3 1/2% per year, that would require substantial changes in policy but it could be done, you would garner more than enough revenue. it would change the whole debate. about whether you're saying people of high income need to pay more taxes. even though higher income people now we have the highest of any country in the developed world. we already pay -- 1% of the people get 20% of the income and pay 30% of the taxes. at what point do you say, okay,
you've given enough? we need to grow the economy and then deal with these out year spending costs that are unacceptable and unsustainable. tax reform provides the catalyst i think for common ground to make this happen in a divided country. look, i just -- you know, i love my country and i see decline in the future. unless we begin to solve these problems. if we can't solve it by having 60 republican senators and a majority in the congress and a republican president with a clear agenda, if that doesn't happen this election, then there has to be some compromise. ronald reagan did it. he compromised. and he is now an icon among conservatives as he should be. >> governor, it's been a pleasure to see you. next, a man who knows more than anybody else about what it's like to run against obama. senator john mccain and his wife cindy. >> when we nominate mitt romney, we do so with a greater purpose
than winning an advantage for our party. we charge him with the care of a higher cause. his election represents the best hopes for our country and the world. it is said that this election will turn on domestic and economic issues. but what mitt romney knows and what we know is the success at home also depends on our leadership in the world. muddling through allergies. try zyrtec® liquid gels. nothing starts working faster than zyrtec® at relieving your allergy symptoms for 24 hours. zyrtec®. love the air.
♪ living in america a bittersweet time for john mccain, the man who beat mitt romney, then ran against barack obama and lost. the hurdles of candidate romney in this campaign. senator mccain, mrs. mccain, welcome. >> thank you. >> we let you have beer in the cnn grill i'm afraid. >> actually i think that's gin. >> you're in a unique position because you beat mitt romney in a presidential campaign.
there's no one better to talk about this stage of the campaign then you. >> i think he's in pretty good shape. he had a very good speech by his vice presidential candidate, selection. what he's got to fight is the unfavorables that are the result of hundreds of millions of dollars of attack ads by the obama campaign where he was heavily outspent. he won't be after the convention. and also i think the -- americans are very unhappy with our economy. but they want to see a path forward. and i think that paul ryan kind of laid that out. >> are you ploosed to see the issue of faith? i thought that was a very clever way of killing the mormon issue
as a problem. >> exactly. it's about two men and their wives of course that could possibly be the top tier of this government. being strong in not only what they believe. but not putting their personal interests first. >> i think also there is questions about the mormon faith, as you know. i think that ann talking about it, and i am convinced that mitt will talk about it. to tell people that his faith is part of his life. the mormon faith has come under significant scrutiny --
>> i think that's been a strategic error actually. if he talked about it more open, the -- in the end it's one of many religions in america. it didn't have to quite be the stigma it's been allowed to grow into. >> and the mormon faith requires that people go on missions. now, he has said in the past, his mission was one of the important fa phases of his life. they take these young men and women and send them to a foreign country. they're kind of on their own. their job is to recruit people for their faith. >> last week, the todd akin story blew up. to me it's strange you have mitt romney who clearly has move around on an issue like abortion. paul ryan has moved towards mitt
romney, sort of compromise position. there should be exceptions. the gop platform still insichts there cannot be any abortions even in the cases of rain, incest or health to the mother. as a republican, how do you feel about that? >> i'm sorry for that. as a woman, i'm sorry for that. we don't agree on that issue. clearly john and i take a different stand on that. but it's also not the most important issue that is driving this campaign. i think outside sources are driving it. but that's not -- as a woman, as, you know, people here, we're concerned about the economy. >> i suppose the problem is what it does is it lends, again, to the argument that the republican party is anti-woman. >> i agree with you it was harmful to our party. the platform -- at one point, it's what you stand on during the convention and run away from during the campaign. and, the fact is, is people care
what romney's position is. that's what they care about. the third thing is i think that's important to keep in mind that what mr. -- congressman akin was talking about was not abortion, it was about rape. and all of us find -- that's why all of us find that totally unacceptable what he said. we're offended that he should state such a thing. by the way, getting the nomination of your party for the senate or the presidency is a privilege. he has abused that privilege. that's why he should no longer be the candidate of the republican party in missouri. senator, as always, great to see you. >> happy to be here. >> mrs. mccain. >> thank you. and coming back, condoleezza rice and her party's message women and why she would not want to be herself? mitt romney and paul ryan ll help us build at home and lead us abroad and they will provide
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mitt romney and paul ryan have the integrity and the experience and the vision to lead us. they know who we are. they know who we want to be, and they know who we are in the world and what we offer. >> who better to advise mitt romney and paul ryan on foreign policy than condoleezza rice. a speech here in tampa brought the crowd to their feet as the former secretary of state defended the pair and the party. before the convention dr. rice spoke to me. dr. rice, how are you? >> i'm very well, thank you. very nice to see you. >> vy nice to see you. >> mitt romney has two big problems according to all of the polls, women and black voters and you are a very high profile woman and a black voter, and it seemed to me that in the extraordinary poll to me, the "wall street journal" and the nbc poll that said that mitt romney was literally polling zero in black votes in america, and i found that staggering and you must have, too. >> well, i do, but i know that it depends upon how one asks the
questions and i'm suspicious of the polls, myself. but what we have to do as a party is to explain to people why these issues which are so pre lent among americans in general also speak to concerns for minorities and women. if you are a black person, and you are not concerned about the fact that the unemployment rate among young black men is more than twice the national average, then you are not concerned about minority issues. if you are not concerned about the fact that our schools are failing kids in the least privileged circumstances, many of whom are minorminorities, then you are not concerned about the minority issues and mitt romney speaks to the issues. we have a tendency to ask what are the minority issues? well, education, jobs, and the sorts of things that most americans are worrying about these days. >> is he focusing enough though on the black vote, the female vote?
does he need to do more? because is that a problem? at the moment there is a perception that mitt romney has decided that barack obama, and i can't beat him with the black vote, so no point to waste my time and energy chasing a vote i won't get? >> well, look, there was great pride and i shared it in america's first president, and everybody understands that, but ultimately, one has to ask, are these policies that are helping america and in particular are they helping some of the most vulnerable among minorities, kids in failing schools, unemployed youth, and the policies are not helping those constituencies, and so i do think that mitt romney is speaking to black voters and speaking to women voters who hold many of the same concerns. but it has to be, there has to be receptive ti on the other side, too, and it can't be a one-way transmission. >> and one thing with the party is that reared the ugly head is the todd akin furor ti, and the extreme issues that people see
on social issues like abortion and others that adds to the fire that somehow the party is anti-women, and what did you make of the todd akin thing, because you are not as hard-line of abortion as many, many the party? >> well, no, and the way that the party leaders responded to tell others about that is a statement that really bordered on ridiculous. and i think that everybody said that. now, women, the party and women, and you saw a parade of women who are leading this party. governors and senators and i say what more do you want? yes, they are women of conservative views. >> well, what they wanted, is you, dr. rice, to be v.p. and position of party in the party. >> well, people probably didn't want that, and i did not want that.
>> you really didn't want that? >> no, we have a great candidate for vice president in paul ryan. >> you said that you have no desire to be in mitt romney's cabinet should he win in november, and not many people believe you? >> well, they should. >> look me straight in the eye, are you 100% or 99.9%? >> piers, i wrote a memoir called "no higher honor." there is no higher honor, and i have had that honor, and i'm very happy now to be a professor at stanford and that is where i'm going to be. >> far more important than anything has been your appointment as one of the first two female women of the augusta golf club, and a tryout for women all over the world. >> well, i'm honored and honored that the members of augusta want me among their number, it is a beautiful golf course with traditions and i said a long time ago the face of america and the face of golf is changing. i'm very grateful to enter with dellam moore.
>> and what do you want to do with a band of dinosaurs who have banned women for so long. >> well, it happened as it should have with the time of the members of that club, but i am honored and i look forward to playing there, and i have to work on the short greens, because it is very difficult to hold the greens there. >> and you looking for a partner? >> are you ready? >> well, i banned myself until they allowed women so i have now released my own ban, so i can help you with the short game. >> well, i have a long line. but i will see. >> okay. thank you. pleasure. and now i will ask rick santorum about the famous hand speech and the advice for president obama. >> under president obama, the opportunity of freedom has become a nightmare of dependence with almost half of america receiving some sort of
government assistance and it is no surprise that fewer and fewer americans are achieving their dreams and more and more parents are concerned that their children won't achieve theirs. president obama spent four years and borrowed $5 trillion trying to convince you that he can make things better for you, to put your trust in him and the government to take care of every problem. the result is massive debt. and anemic growth and millions more unemployed.
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to block pain signals for hours of relief. capzasin-hp. take the pain out of arthritis. rick santorum has come a long way in a few short months from mitt romney's number one challenger to a strong supporter. i sat down with him and his wife, caroline, after the convention speech. welcome, both of you. first of all, let me see the hands. it is all about the hands tonight. >> they asked me to talk about welfare and when i thought about that, i thought about, well, what the center part of welfare reform as i worked on it, because i helped to write the bill was work. when think of work i think of my grandfather and what he did to work his way, and he was not relying on welfare been f benefits as immigrants don't. so i really felt that was a sort of theme to talk about him and his hands which i had talked about before and the more i thought about it, it, i just
thought of all of the people i have met. >> actually i thought it was powerful and i like the way you threaded it through, but what i did not like it so much is that you continued to make out that president obama in some way wants everyone on welfare to forget about going to work, because you in your heart know that is not true. that is not what has happened, is it? >> well, what has happened is a dramatic expansion of government entitlement programs and programs like and more to come, obama care, which is a huge government expansion that is going to quote, guarantee people health insurance, which of course, you know, it does not necessarily mean health care. >> you don't actually believe he wants people on welfare to stop looking for work or -- you don't think that is really what he wants? be honest. >> i think that what the president of the united states in his own mind may believe is that the way to get america going is the way to dependency and it is a way -- look, people
on welfare and i worked with this issue, and people on welfare made rational economic decisions not to work, because the government programs were so generous, that it cost them money to work. these are things that while he may not say, well, i want -- well, does he really believe i don't want people to work? no. but his policies lead to rational decisions which lead to dependency. >> and that is quite an admission you just made, because if you don't believe that is what he really believes, you should be more honest about it. >> no, i think that he believes that the government should do more. i don't believe there is any question that the government should do more and that you cannot trust the private sector and he goes out to uniformly condemns profit, and condemns the private sector, and -- >> are the are so many accurate things that you could go after president obama after, and why not things that which don't really stack up? >> well, i would make the argument that when you dramatically expand the size and scale of the government, and dramatically expand the social
welfare prom groos -- programs and you provide waivers to work requirements and people don't talk about it, but two years ago he did a waiver to food stamp requirement, and food stamps have exploded and he has dramatically increased the social welfare state in the country, and you can make the argument that he believes it is a good thing that government should be there not just as a safety net, but should be there to provide sort of a basic. and he is someone who believes in the living wage and government should guarantee a specific wage and yes, he believes in a heavier hand of government a and i would make the argument that leads people to be dependent on washington for them to be provided for, and that is a dangerous thing. >> well, it is good to see you up there, and back on form, and back on fire. i also debate whether i agree with you or not, you are a man who is consistent and that is a powerful thing in a politician. >> well, thank you, i'd rather use the word, i try to be authentic and try to be who i am. >> and similar things. good to see yo