tv George H.W. Bush Interview in New Hampshire CSPAN January 30, 2016 10:45am-10:55am EST
taped by salem high school students in new hampshire. it played in cable access and parts of new hampshire and massachusetts. this is the first time it has aired on national television. george bush would finish second in the 1980 new hampshire primary behind eventual gop nominee ronald reagan who would go on to defeat incumbent president jimmy carter in the general election. this is about 10 minutes. >> leadership is a quality american people had been demanding from the president. many americans feel like we have not seen strong leadership your how would you define leadership? george h.w. bush: i think leadership is having a conviction, a conviction of the direction you want your country to go, a conviction that can offer a hope of freedom for countries around the world and your own people.
it is also a concept of having people follow, looking over your shoulder, and people being with you. it connotes to me respect, it connotes strength, and it connotes principle. >> further clarify your definition, who would you select as the three most effective leaders in history and why would you select these people? george h.w. bush: history? that's pretty tough. i would say in relatively recent history, abraham lincoln. abraham lincoln set a direction for the country. that direction, contrary to modern perceptions of lincoln's presidency, was holding the union together. it didn't matter how he did it, it was the survival of the union. he set his sights on that. he did it. in the process, he demonstrated a great compassion for people. clearly, i would put a man like general eisenhower as a strong leader.
it was the focus and the matrix was the war itself. he was a great hero, he was a quiet man in a sense. not given to flamboyant or macho, but he generated confidence in the people he led. as president, i am predicting an eisenhower revival. 2% inflation, respect abroad. this man had leadership qualities. he was a decent individual. character has to be a part of leadership. eisenhower had character. if i went for a third, i would probably take winston churchill. churchill during the early days of the most troubled days for the brits, world war ii, he had a different style. he had a marvelous way with english-language. he could generate the best in a people under siege. there are three different types.
three, i think, amazing individuals. >> those qualities that you mention there, what decisions have you made in the past which reflect effectiveness in leadership? george h.w. bush: i have had tough leadership jobs. the two that are the most difficult are painting the republican party during the last days of the nixon presidency, the last two years of nixon's presidency. as history would show, this is the first time that the interest of the party did not always coincide with the interest of an incumbent president. that was one. i think another difficult job, maybe the most difficult, was leading the central intelligence agency at a moment when it was very fashionable to jump all over it, tear it down, take a handful of abuses from the past and use those to show there was a certain immorality to intelligence.
both of them were challenging leadership assignments. i hope i did them with the integrity of the institution i serve intact when i finished the job. it is a tough assessment to assess one's own leadership. i believe i did that. i believe i had the respect of people with whom i agreed and disagreed. i hope that the last one, the cia job, i elevated the moral of the people. i did not try to elevate myself into the public limelight. in either of these jobs. people say how come you have lacked a name identification? i think it is a style. i judge it -- can you lead with respect? can you accomplish your objective and then have respect of people? not always like you, not always lead -- agree with you, but
respect. i think i did that in most to assignments. >> let's move into the future. today, america is confronted with a crisis situation. americans are faced with the cost of incurrence of inflation recession, and unemployment price, rise of oil prices, rise of food prices. -- and unemployment problem, and an energy crisis. these are the kinds of problems he would face on a daily basis if you're elected president. how would you handle these problems and please be specific. george h.w. bush: it is interesting, mr. blumenthal a while back made a very candid assessment. blumenthal having been treasury secretary under president carter. he pointed out that no matter how well the intensive than -- intention, the president lacked the will to make the tough decisions necessary to break the back of inflation.
let me say i don't think the period in the 80's on inflation and recession will be easy. i think it will be tough for any candidate for president or anything else to say there is a quick and easy fix out there that is wrong. to chart a course, in my course generally would be emphasizing the fundamentals of economics. we have gotten away from that area we have gone to the , spend your way into prosperity economics, i would change it. within a fundamental framework of conservative economics, i would restrict the growth of federal spending. i would compel a congress to do that. if they didn't, i would veto legislation. hold the growth rate to around 6.8%. i would find ways, and this isn't easy but it is at least specific, to cut through the excesses of regulation. some of it right i would get rid of many of the regulators leaning on the farthest side of radiation. the cost to our country in regular nation's estimated at $102 billion a year.
you need to find a balance between those who would rape and pillage the environment and wantonly spreading around poison from waste and those who would go so far that you cut off all growth and offer only hopelessness to the poor in this country. we have to find a balance on regulation. a third thing i would you specifically is to have a tax cut. not the popular one. not the one out there that says we are going to have a recession, let's cut taxes for everyone and stimulate demand. i wouldn't do it that way. i would have every facet of that tax cut aimed at increasing investment. what is called by economists, a supply-side tax cut. it would be things like to a family that founded extraordinarily difficult to save for a down payment on a house.
those savings accounts are going to be tax-free on the interest. stimulate investment to a businessman who has a truck and wants to buy three more. more rapid depreciation, or to others, tax credits for certain kinds of equipment. or to a business that would locate where the unemployed are. give you special write-offs if you put your business there and offer hope to people by having a drop in -- a job in the private sector, not the public sector. those specifics would result in a balanced budget in the year 1982. i have checked them with some of the best non-keynesian economists in this country. but now let me tell you this. you ask about leadership. the only way we are going to get there is to have leadership that can convince the congress that we have to try these fundamentals. if they won't try, then you have to veto. it is tough out there.
everyone wants to do what is popular. i think leadership means making the tough decisions, charting a course, not refusing to expose yourself to ideas, but charting a course and staying with her. taking the heat that will come from not always been popular out there. >> george bush, thank you for being with us on election 80. >> road to the white house rewind continues with an interview with republican commerce and john anderson from the 1980 presidential campaign. taped by salem high school students in new hampshire, it played on cable access and parts of new hampshire and massachusetts. this is the first time it has aired on national television. john anderson finished fourth in the 1980 new hampshire primary. he withdrew from the gop race two months later and ran as an independent candidate in the general election where he received 6.6% of the vote and finished third. ronald reagan defeated jimmy carter to win the presidency. this is about 10 minutes.