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tv   Mitt Romney at RNC Winter Meeting  CSPAN  January 17, 2015 8:00pm-8:46pm EST

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>> 2012 republican presidential nominee mr. romney's remarks at the winter meeting. that a look at possible 2016 republican presidential candidates. after that, health and human services secretary on global health security. former presidential candidate mitt romney spoke last night at the republican national committee winter meeting in san diego. this is his first of its speech since immediate reported that the former massachusetts governor is exploring a third presidential bid. this is c-span 2016 road to the white house coverage. it is 15 minutes.
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[cheers and applause] >> thank you. thank you. thank you. what great friends. thank you. this is a friendly crowd. it is nice to appear in crowds like this. thank you. please, thank you. >> ann why don't you say hi? [applause] >> again, it is just the gratitude that we express such deep appreciation for all that you have done, to try and promote democracy and goodwill. winning elections, we were thrilled to have been watching the television sets of 2014 the
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night of the big win. we knew that you had a big part in that. we appreciate the work that you do in your state, and all the work that you did for us. i'm here to express deep gratitude for that. to just express our love and appreciation. thank you. [applause] >> that is quite a woman. gosh, it is great to be back with so many friends. it is like coming back to a high school reunion to see my friends here. you have lost weight. you have grown more hair. [laughter] my eyes get weaker as i grow older. it is wonderful to see you. what a generous welcome. we have been able to say hi to so many of you. we have had some selfies taken. it touches my heart. congratulations in a historic
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re-election of reince. he came in a difficult time. we had a financial deficit at the rnc. we had a technology deficit. he has helped erase that. this is an extraordinary man. he and the team that has been elected deserve extra dinner support you have given -- extraordinary support you have given. i want to congratulate you on the successes in 2014. i know you hear that time and time again. i had a chance to visit with the number of people who were running for office. you know this. it is a very impressive group of men and women. that you have elected offices across the country. i can't possibly think of all
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the names. some of these folks, you meet them and it is like well, this is an amazing person. tom cotton. [applause] background in the military. thom tillis, dan sullivan. doug ducci. mia love. my governor of massachusetts charlie baker. [applause] how about joni ernst? isn't she an amazing person? just something else. there is some people that not only impressed me but also inspire me. martha, arizona, you know her story. a fighter pilot, air force fighter pilot. she comes and runs for congress and believe she wins.
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they send her to washington to meet the other members in 2012. only to find out by recount she did not win. she has to go home having thought she had been elected. she decides to go at it again. she has been an extraordinary person. a rising star. some people who have served in the military, who have gone out and fought for our nation, despite having extraordinaire academic credentials and career opportunities, they went to the military and have come back to serve in the senate. it is quite a story. i want to congratulate you on the work you have done to improve the primary process, to change the date of the convention, to limit the debates and reign them in. i think you ought to be proud for doing that work. in particular, thank you to you for your help to me in 2012. you were hard-working. dedicated. you went all over the country for me.
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you should know that from our perspective, the romney family everything works seamlessly between the rnc and the campaign. that is how it should be. you really want to have those work hand to glove as we did. your leadership in this group deserves great credit. we pulled for different people that we came together once i became the nominee and it was an extraordinary blessing. you should know this -- no greater honor has been bestowed upon me than to become the nominee of the republican party for the president of the united states. i owe you a debt of gratitude. [applause] there is speculation on if i'm going to embark on a political endeavor of which i have been previously unsuccessful. [whistles and applause] i have no intention of running for senate of massachusetts.
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seriously. [laughter] for our party, and for the nation, 2016 is not going to be about the obama years. it is going to be about the post obama era. conservative principles are needed as perhaps never before. this isn't the right venue to lay out the policies that may be appropriate for our party and people who represent our party. i do want to mention three principles that i think should form part of the foundation of what we take to the american people. first we have to make the world safer. second, we have to make sure and provide opportunity for all americans regardless of the neighborhood they live in. we have to lift people out of poverty.
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if we communicate those three things effectively the american people are going to be with us and with our nominee, and with our candidates across the country. let me elaborate. making the world safer. the world is not safer. six years after barack obama. there is no question. i used to joke during the campaign that president obama didn't have a foreign policy. of course that was a joke because he did. it was crafted by he and his secretary of state hillary clinton. their foreign policy was based on the premise that if we are friendly enough to other people, and if we smiled broadly enough and press the reset button peace would break out around the world. this is a foreign policy that said we should walk back from red lines. this is a foreign policy that said we should leave from -- lead from behind. this is a foreign policy characterized by speaking loudly
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and carrying a small stick. the results of the hillary clinton/barack obama policy have been devastating. you know that. terrorism is not on the run. as a matter of fact, the radical violent jihadists and their forms are terrorizing and brutalizing people all over the world just in the last several days. tragic events in paris and nigeria, in yemen. hundreds of lives, possibly thousands of lives taken needlessly. it is extraordinary. we also see in the middle east and north africa, turmoil. the syrian tragedy races on. liberia is in disarray. libya, i mean, is in disarray. iraq is under siege. iran is rushing to become a nuclear nation. this is a difficult time for the world. you have russia having invaded
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ukraine, taking crimea. you have china saying they on -- own the south china sea. this is not been a good time for american foreign-policy. to make the world safer for americans and to make the world safe for freedom, our party must stand for making the world safer and our principles will do that. we have to make that point loud and clear. [applause] in the post-obama era, we have to use our strength to anticipate events, to shape events rather than react. i mean our economic strength our diplomatic strength. those are the sources we will be able to rely upon. number one, safety for the
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american people and freedom, and freedom loving people all over the world. number two, i believe we have to communicate to the american people that our principles are principles that will bring opportunity to every american. this is the land of opportunity. regardless of where you live you ought to know that your future can be brighter and your kids future will be brighter. we have the principles and the vision to do that for the american people. it is a tragedy, a human tragedy that the middle class by and large does not believe the future will be better in the past. we have not seen rising incomes over decades. american people are struggling to make ends meet. our policies in this regard are designed to help create economic growth and put people back to work, and get rising wages. people want to see rising wages and they deserve them. they are working hard and using technology. they face competition around the world. the policies we are going to be talking about all over the country will be education,
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dealing with legal reform. job training. tax and regulatory reform. energy policies. the gratian policy. -- immigration policy. it also means if they want to see growth we are point at the size of government and balance the budget. finally repeal and replace obamacare so we can get real growth again. [applause] number one, safety. number two, opportunity for all americans. number three, we have to lift people out of poverty. we are in abundant nation. we have the resources and the capacity intellectually, financially, to lift people out of poverty. it was how many years ago? 50 years ago, lyndon baines johnson declared the war on poverty. his heart was in the right place. under president obama, income inequality has gotten worse.
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more people are in poverty than ever before. his policies have not worked. their liberal policies are good every four years for a campaign but they don't get the job done. the only policies that will reach into the hearts of american people and pull people out of poverty and break the cycle of poverty are republican principles, conservative principles. family formation education good jobs. we are going to bring them to the american people and finally end the scourge of poverty in this great land. [applause] i believe in the post-obama era we need to stand for safety and opportunity for all people regardless of the neighborhood they come from. we have to stand for helping lift people out of poverty. i should tell you the last few days the most frequently asked question i get is, what does ann
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think of this? [laughter] she believes that people get better with experience. [laughter] [applause] and heaven knows i have experience running for president. by the way, she knows my heart. in a way that few people do. she has seen me not just as a business and political guy. over 10 years, i served as a pastor for a congregation in -- and groups of congregations. she has seen me work with people who are very poor to get them help and jobs. she knows where my heart is. i love her, and appreciate her support. she is my strongest advocate in almost every single thing i can imagine. i am giving some serious consideration to the future.
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but this i know -- we can win as a party in the house, senate, and the white house if we communicate a clear vision of where we are taking the country, what we believe in, those principles i have described are among those that we are going to fight for. we are going to win. regardless of what happens in the primaries or the political process that goes on, ann romney and i are going to fight for our nominee and win back the white house because the american people deserve it. we're going to make it happen. thank you. great to be with you. thank you so much. thank you. [applause] ♪ thank you. mr. chairman. thank you. [applause] >> a discussion of some of the 2016 republican presidential
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candidate possibilities. from "washington journal" this is about 30 minutes. tively, the american people will be with us. host: joining us for conversation on 2016 and presidential politics, michael warren of the "weekly standard." what you think of the speech? guest: it is interesting. the three principles that he puts out sound like what a republican candidate would run on. make the world safe to __ i think mitt romney has been impacted by world events. particularly, russia and russian aggressiveness in the world, he made the list of __ made those debates of lot, and was actually mocked by obama. opportunity for all __ interesting principle as well.
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you hear a lot of republicans talk about that. not just the 47%, you heard ronnie say that, those who receive government benefits. also, looking back at romney's campaign, paul ryan was trying to go out there and talk about poverty. it was reported after the campaign that he felt a lot of resistance from the romney campaign, to not talk about poverty. it is interesting to see romney say this is something the party ought to move forward on. i'm a little skeptical that romney is the face, and maybe the vessel, for that message. but clearly, he and some members of the rnc are considering. host: skeptical, why? guest: you have to look at the 2012 campaign.
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he said 2016 will not be about obama. in many ways, you could have said the same thing but 2012. i think they were, the romney campaign that is, were so focused on saying obama had something's wrong. he screwed things up, he had not save the economy like he said he would. it really was not a vision for the future. i guess i'm a little skeptical given that __ a third chance __ in 2016, ken romney really rise to the challenge of taking a future __ a forward_looking agenda for the american people? in many ways, he was last elected to office in 2007. he left the governor's mansion in massachusetts. the politics have changed. mitt romney can lay claim to have ryan and okay, admirable
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campaign in 2012, but you cannot seal the deal. what makes people think he will seal the deal in 2016. host: commenting this morning on the romney campaign __ saying, don't do it, mr. romney. there was something called reaganism, you knew what you're voting for, it was a philosophy, if they are right and pertinent to the moment, they make you inevitable __ from the "washington post". guest: she goes on to say that __ if romney is and is a thing __ reagan was not reagan until he became reagan. he really took up ideas that other people in the party __ a
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lot of the supply_siders on the economic front __ he was a champion for ideas and took up those ideas. ronnie could very well be a champion for ideas. i'm not sure i heard that from the clip. that does not mean any number of republican candidates cannot latch on, and learn from the intellectual power that is fueling the republican movement. i have not seen that in the past for mitt romney. i'm skeptical that what we see in the future for mitt romney will be any different. host: the 2016 gop politics, our topic for the morning. if you would like to make your thoughts known, call in.
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before, we heard from mitt romney, before that, jeb bush. what you think he would bring to campaign if he makes the official? guest: he brings an outside perspective. it is kind of ironic considering that he is a bush. he has not been in elected office since 2007. he served two terms as governor. he has been updated talking to people, giving speeches. he has not been here in washington. that could be seen as being an asset for him. he has been removed from the party bickering here in washington. in many ways, he has risen above that. i believe that is kind of the message that he is trying to send to republicans, to donors __ i do not want to get involved, i do not want to move too far to the right, i want to
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be me. there's something to that. the most successful republican candidates at the presidential level for the last generation and a half has been the bushes __ there's something to save for that. the world has also changed a lot since 2007. i think we all remember what happened in 2007 and 78 with the economy. we all know what has happened since 2008 across the world. i wonder in question whether jeb bush really fully understands where his party now is on a lot of these issues, and where the country is. i think that remains to be seen. again, jeb bush is someone who is interested in ideas and policy. if the right policy agenda comes along, and met with a charismatic candidate like jeb bush, perhaps we could see another reagan.
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host: to think shifting positions on immigration, same_sex marriage, does that help or hurt in the long run? guest: i don't know. sometimes politics and memory are so short. in a lot of ways, barack obama is a perfect example. he was against same_sex marriage in 2008. now he is vehemently __ maybe not vehemently __ he emphasized that he was for a traditional marriage, now he has changed his mind. the country has change in a lot of ways on this issue. i think it remains to be seen if this even will be an issue in 2016, because of what the supreme court announced. i think primary voters' memories are bit longer. the education issue will come into play when jeb bush comes a
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fair. i think he has to have a good answer to those questions that primary voters will have. host: on the cover of the latest "weekly standard" is ben carson. taking ben carson seriously. guest: ben carson, as most people know, is a doctor. he has a fantastic life story. he comes from a difficult background, and rose to be one of the top neurosurgeons in the country. he has made a name for himself. i think in many urban school districts, he is taught alongside martin luther king as a real hero in the african_american community. a few years ago, it he gave a
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prayer __ he is a christian and is open about his faith __ and he scrutinized obama for not following christian principles. he burst on the political scene. he got on the cable news scene, on fox news. he has taken storm, conservatives. his critique of the obama administration has gotten conservatives and republicans excited. it remains to be seen. fred barnes wrote the cover story for us and got to know ben carson very well. he described ben carson as a long shot, and i think that is true. he is definitely an outsider in all aspects of the word. i think he is interesting and will have interesting things to say if he does decide to run. he has also shown plagiarism allegations in his book that he might not be ready for prime time and running for president
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is a big stage. you have to be prepared. that is a warning for folks like jeb bush and mitt romney -- it is -- it has all changed. host: ben carson will be on this program monday morning. john from florida, you are up first with michael warren of "weekly standard." caller: my question to you, you know jeb bush is running for president. why is it that in 2013 in "the new york post," jeb bush said we should be celebrating fracking because it happens in north dakota pennsylvania, other states, and he is involved with fracking, he and his family, and in texas they have a situation now where they are going to court because they banned
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fracking in one of the towns in texas. my question to you is why isn't the media talking about asking president jeb bush, or soon to be president jeb bush, about fracking? guest: i am not sure about the specific lawsuit the caller is talking about. this is somewhat of a problem for jeb bush and it was a problem for mitt romney, in a lot of ways -- the sense that these candidates are a part of big business, the wall street crowd, and it plays into the republican party's perception that it is a party for the rich. of course, on the democratic side, hillary clinton has a big problem with this. she is very well-connected with wall street donors and a lot of the money comes from wall street. that is an issue with both parties. on the issue of fracking and energy, i think this is a great issue for republicans to hang
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onto. two and half years ago i spent a week in north dakota and it is a fascinating story happening -- it is really the wild west. interesting things moving -- happy with people moving out there with no connection to the oil industry. north dakota has some of the lowest unemployment rates highest growth rates in the economy out there. i think there are a lot of lessons. republicans, to their credit, have in many ways latched onto this as a political issue. expanding energy production, happy not just north dakota, what is the caller mentioned pennsylvania, colorado -- this is a huge issue, energy independence that republicans are uniquely qualified to talk about and promote. host: democrats line. ruth. go ahead. guest: i can give you all three
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republican candidates. they might be popular but none of them would -- yes, i can give you all three republican candidates, and they would be popular, but none of them would make it and would make it a win for democrats. jeb bush, besides fracking, one word, enron. he was very much involved with that. chris christie, the hurricane money -- he did not take care of a lot of the towns that are still completely devastated from the hurricane. and reagan -- i mean, romney -- oh this man is trying to run on his father's background. his father and him are two
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completely different people. host: ruth, thank you. guest: i think it is interesting the caller mentioned those three, romney, jeb bush, and chris christie, as the republican candidates, and those are the names you see people throwing out. every once in a while some place like the "weekly standard" talks about an outside candidate like ben carson, and i think that is a mistake if republicans are thinking this is it -- this is the field. we are in january of 2015. jeb bush has started exploratory committee. mitt romney has not done anything official. chris christie, even less so. there are a lot of candidates you could argue that are from a younger generation, a new generation politically. i go back to 2008. it was such an important year not just because barack obama won the election, but because of
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what happened in the economy. i think it changed people's perception of the relationship of government, business, banking, consumers, and the level to which government ought to be involved. look at wisconsin governor scott walker who was elected governor in 2010, reelected in 2012, and 2014 because of that recall in 2012. his is someone that has been fighting this the past decade. not the previous decade. i think candidate like that that are part of this new generation, ought not to be deterred that "the new york times," and "the washington post," have mitt romney, chris christie, and jeb bush fever. guest: -- host: nine debates have been sanctioned. others will be added.
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talk about the primary process. we'll it be extended, with a be shorter so that one candidate emerges earlier? what are your thoughts? guest: it seems the republican national committee wants to shorten the process have fewer debates. i think there was a feeling there were too many last time around. i started to lose count after the 10th or 11th that i attended. i do not know that the problem was necessarily the number of the debates. it might have been the quality of the debates. the questions were not always helpful, more designed to, sort of, stoke arguments, as opposed to debate between the candidates trying to position themselves as the most conservative on this particular issue, or the most reasonable on this particular issue. there was not a lot of policy debate to let primary voters understand where all of these people stood, and there was also
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a difference were mitt romney was, kind of, the front runner the whole time. this time, i think it will be a lot more open. despite what we have been talking about with these high-money front runners, there will be a lot more people jumping in, and to that extent, a longer primary process is not necessarily a bad thing. i think 2016 will be a moment for the republican party to figure out who exactly they are -- where they fall on his economic issues. whether they are going to strike a more populist tone on these issues, what kind of foreign policy proposals and positions will they take up -- debate is a good thing in that sense. i think the rnc ought to recognize that having those debates, having a long drawnout process, could actually be good for the party in sewing up the nominee and getting it all finished and out of the way.
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it might not always serve the republican nominees' interests. host: terry, you are on with michael warren. caller: good morning. you spoke -- stole my thunder. my candidate would be scott walker. as far as mitt romney, i prefer to buy new tires and retreads. scott walker has beaten union goons and the liberal media. he knows how to win. mr. romney trying to do the same thing john mccain did, the a middle-of-the-road, sweet little guy, trying to get the liberal media to love him, and that will last until the ninth, -- knives to come out. i do not know he would be in
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fort, but i think ben carson would be a good vice president running mate. host: thank you. guest: that is a sentiment. i am looking for to hearing what voters like terry have to say. in many ways there is a lot of aberration for mitt romney for what he did in -- admiration for mitt romney for what he did in 2012, but then there is the sense that we need to move forward. scott walker is an example of that. marco rubio, collected in 2010 -- a new face, young face, fresh face. i think it is interesting that governor walker is being thrown out there is a real possibility. i think he is thinking about it. trying to way -- trying to way when to jump in. since "the washington post,"
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"the new york times," are covering mitt romney, jeb bush, someone like scott walker might benefit from jumping in. he will not have as much money as those candidates, but people start covering you when you are running for president or when they think you are running for president. it would be a good opportunity for him to bone up on foreign policy, and make the case that what he is done in wisconsin the leadership that the caller talked about, is something he would like to apply to the country. host: armand. richard. -- vermont. richard. democrats line. caller: my thoughts on the president -- whoever is president should not deny climate change. it is probably one of our highest priorities, and anyone that does not believe in it, i think they are barking up the wrong tree. guest: there has actually been
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quite a bit of science that has added some skepticism to the idea that there is significant man-made climate change, global warming -- whatever you want to call it. beyond that, there is a debate on whether or not this is something humans are doing to the environment, and that there is something that can be done. i think, politically, there has been a lot of, for lack of a better term, steam, that is, out of this movement, even within the democratic party. this is the kind of thing -- the push for higher taxes to regulate pollution these policy ideas that sound great when the economy is booming, when things are going great, and people feel like they have enough money to put food on their table, and have jobs on their table, and earn some cash. the economy is not quite where it really should be to be addressing these kinds of things. i think, ultimately, voters are just not interested at this
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point in really seeing the government take this on. with all due respect to the caller's position, to take this on as a major policy issued. they are more concerned with if they have enough money to spend on gas or put food on the table. i do not think a republican presidential candidate will do himself any favors by embracing a big government response to climate change, and there is a debate on whether or not government can do anything to stop this. host: you spoke about where the party will be by the time the elections, round. on social issues, we think this falls as far as 2016 is concerned? guest: it will be interesting because there is this sense social issues, particularly same-sex marriage, that the country is moving in one direction, and the party is
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completely on the other side of this issue. i really do think that the court -- it is the court's decision. i do not know anyone that has said the court will uphold these laws banning same-sex marriage. i think we're going to see the courts basically legalize it and in many ways that will take the issue off of the table. that is not to say that republicans will not be asked about same-sex marriage. i think that will be a distraction from some of the more important issues -- the economic issues, foreign-policy issues that are actually affecting americans day by day. by the time 2016 rolls around -- host: a different shade. guest: exactly. and it will probably benefit republican presidential candidates. host: from baltimore, maryland, nat, independent line.
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caller: it is a pleasure to talk to two of my favorite sources of information. i would like to ask two questions. number one, do you think made romney, if he would have taken advantage of his ability to speak spanish, that he would have been elected in the previous election? number two ben carson, i am supporting him, but if the republicans to not pick him up the democrat certainly won't, but would he run as a spoiler third party? and third, if anyone doubts the business of the u.n. gaining control by this pseudo-problem of global warning, is it possible they would look at some of the more scientific sources like the nipcc.
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host: thank you, caller. guest: the real question is if romney had simply done better with the hispanic voters would he have done better? i really doubt it. if he had gotten 50%, he still would have lost. he would have picked up, probably florida, might have been able to compete in colorado, but it would not have been enough electoral votes enough to win ohio or wisconsin -- he's made -- these midwestern states. that goes to the republican party of 2012. it under-performed with white voters. it has increasingly come to depend on what you want to call blue-collar, white working-class voters. and the inverse of that, is
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democrats have a -- had to rely less on that, what has historically been a democratic voting block, the reagan democrats of a generation ago. in the issue of ben carson running as an independent, i do not know about ben carson in particular -- i am not sure about his abilities to do that. i think you need a lot more money on the scale of ross perot, but i am intrigued by the 1992 campaign, particularly if jeb bush wins the nomination and you have a bush-clinton race again. i think we are living in the same world we were in 1992. a center-right country that is not quite sure what to move on from here, and the broadly center-right section of the electorate is at odds with each
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other. you have more of a business, chamber of commerce, wall street wing of the republican party and more of a grassroots, conservative politics wing. if there is anger at the party you could see another spoiler movement. i am not sure ben carson is the man for that. and the u.n. -- there is really no political momentum >> on the next "washington journal" a roundtable discussion with republican strategist john feehery and jim manley. former national security council direct for richard nelson discusses u.s. counterterrorism efforts to prevent lone wolf style attacks on the homeland. as always, you could join the conversation on facebook and
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twitter. "washington journal" live at 7 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> our guest this under on q&a is on the front line of fighting infectious diseases. >> we have drugs that when given to people who are hiv infected, i could show you the economy -- dichotomy. they would -- half of them would be dead in eight months. now in tomorrow when i go back to rounds someone comes in to a clinic who is 20 plus years old i could accurately addict and say we could do mathematical
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modeling to say if you take your medicine regularly, you could live an additional 550 years. if you take your medicine, you could live essentially a normal lifespan. that is a huge advantage. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern and pacific on c-span's q&a. >> next health and human services secretary sylvia burwell on global health security. the remarks from william adams incoming chair of the national endowment for humanity. after that, the state of the state speech. >> health and human services secretary sylvia burwell says it is time to find common ground on


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