tv Special Report With Bret Baier FOX News January 31, 2012 1:00am-2:00am PST
>> i will never understand this show. i have been doing it a longtime and it doesn't make sense. >> why start now? >> brett: mitt romney and newt gingrich. live from tampa this is special report. >> brett: good evening, i'm brett baier coming live from central florida. we're on harbor island just across the water from the site of the 2012 republican convention here in tampa. the beautiful bright sunshine of this state has been a stark contrast to the increasingly dark tone of the presidential campaign and it's taken in the last week. tonight the two main combatants are wrapping up what has been a very negative campaign. carl cameron begins our
coverage. >> reporter: trailing in florida polls on the eve of the primary, gingrich attacked romney from all angles. >> pro-abortion, pro-gun control pro gay rights, why would they think he is going to be able to debate barack obama? >> he has been pro-gun and pro-abortion for 12 years and he thinks he is self-destructive. >> gingrich. >> governor romney is extraordinarily insensitive to religion freedom in america. i didn't know about the kosher food being cut out by governor romney until the "new york post" reported it yesterday. every time we peel the onion back. >> he said she voted the bill because he would have increased the taxpayer costs for all nursing homes in the state. >> you can flail around and
attack me. he was reprimanded and pushed out of the speaker position by his own fellow republicans. >> 43-29% is the latest poll. santorum and paul tied at 11. but one in four republicans says they are likely to change their minds. romney leads by double-digits. instead of pounding the president. he zeroed in on gingrich. >> the idea of the moon as a 51st state is not what would come to my mind for as campaign basis. >> it shows him tied with the president at 48%. after two morning shows at a jacksonville stop, he flew to pensacola, fort myers and orlando. >> i am in the legitimate heir
of the reagan movement. >> reporter: romney campaigned in jacksonville and followed by the villages, largest retirement community. >> with a turnout like this we may win tomorrow. >> reporter: he is going to have a bigger crowd at the villages. he is expected on the stage any moment now. in the winner all take all delegates. santorum was campaigning in missouri and minnesota. ron paul will be on the stump in nevada tomorrow. leaving romney and gingrich to fight over here. >> brett: bringing you a sense of the different voting areas. a little later, trying to track down the candidates. our coverage of the florida primary continues tuesday. at 6:00 p.m. when special report comes live from american election headquarters in new york. we'll be there throughout the
evening with results and analysis. now the international news, iran's top diplomat is offering to extend the stay of u.n. weapons inspectors currently in his country. chief white house correspondent ed henry says enriching uranium has put other nations in a different spot. >> leon panetta telling 60 minutes, iran is edging closer to have nuclear weapons. >> if they decided to do it, it would probably take them about a year to be able to produce a bomb. then possibly another one to two years in order to put it on a deliverable vehicle. >> reporter: top aides to benjamin netanyahu insist the time line is shorter. suggested yesterday in the "new york times" times magazine they may launch a unilateral strike against iran. with vice president telling them it's a matter of months before
iran has nuclear capability and barack saying it will not be able to stop tehran. a drone that can fall as far as iran crashed in central israel during an experimental flight sparking more speculation about preparations for a possible strike on tehran. officials there seem to be gurd go for war. >> we will confront any threat or hostile behavior and our response will be regretful and destructive. >> reporter: some experts believe it may be bluster as iran welcomed an inspection tour to try and prove they are not building nuclear weapons. >> that probably better having a third war in the middle east. that is a positive. we shouldn't get too excited here. i wouldn't go on overboard. >> reporter: top officials say the dialogue and engagement plus
tough economic sanctions on iran is working. >> we've done more in the last few years than any administration has done before to deal with the challenge of iran's nuclear program. >> reporter: while the sanctions are hurting iran's economy, they are not stopping the nuclear program which is why the door is still open for military action. >> we will take whatever steps are necessary. including military steps. there are no options the table. >> national security advisor said the white house's approach to show the iran the cost of being an outlaw and opportunity to still shift course before its too late. >> brett: ed, thank you. >> state officials say several americans being prevented from leaving egypt have sought shelter at the u.s. embassy in cairo. voting concluded today in the first round of elections for egypt's upper house of parliament. a second round will be held in mid-february. >> u.s. and its allies will try
to put more diplomatic pressure on syria to end the crackdown on dissent. leland vitter shows us there was no evidence that nothing has worked so far. warning, some of the images in this report you may find disturbing. >> reporter: the smoke from a punishing artillery barrage rose above the suburbs. syrian army soldiers fired with machine guns unaware and uncaring about what they would hit. the casualties, those wounded baited for help until a brave comrade could drag them to safety. the dead were left in the streets. rebel leaders reportedly 100 killed since the violence begin, dozens in the past 24 hours, funerals themselves are dangerous. 15 reportedly died as government troops opened fire on a section that included women and children. the battle was a routing of
rebel forces ending trying to destabilize the regem. it was a different story tanks came into the uprising. violence in the neighborhoods, now 11 months since the uprising an army is prohibiting back destroying one tank and celebrating the capture of a syrian hospital. despite their gains, they are heavily outnumbered by assad as they try to fight tanks and heavy artillery. >> foreign ministers in united kingdom and france will join hillary clinton in new york to push for a u.n. resolution calling an end for the violence and telling the syrian people we stand with you. the diplomats will face an uphim battle as they try to get russia
to vote against it's a long time ally. >> should america spend its way out of the recession? that is coming up after a quick break. >> politically speaking the state of florida is very different demographicly. northern part votes like the southern part of the united states. the southern part of the florida votes like the north. just up the road is dangerous, university of florida, that city that area votes democratic because of the university but the counties surrounding is some of the most republican counties in the country. this is tim tebow county and some say it's horse country but they have its own unique voting style. [♪...] >> announcer: bank robbery certainly is a frightening crime. after all, bank robbers stole $43 million in one year. but identity thieves? try 37 billion!
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the channel and where the republican convention will be in just a few months. >> half a percentage point from november to december, congress department says spending was flat. dow lost 7. s&p 500 down 3 and nasdaq was off 5. one of great debates before the general election will be how to encourage economic recovery. correspondent tim angle reports on the battle over spending or saving. >> president obama leads to spending and barely talked about the deficits. >> we've agreed to $3 trillion in cuts and savings. we need to do more. that means making choices. >> president who has had three years to try to propose real solutions is ducking it. >> simpson-boles deficit commission by sperngd
eliminating and lowering tax rates at the same time. but the president never acted on it. ryan argues comprehensive tax reform is a better approach than raising the taxes the way the right turn wants to. >> raising taxes on small businesses and producers, we get far more saving in the budget without choking off economic growth. >> reporter: they are wary of cutting spending too fast. >> it's dangerous to stop priming the pump to get out. pull recession break loose and let the economy go loose. >> whole stimulus approach as the president's first effort that cost a trillion dollars of interest and failed to reduce unemployment or deliver the shovel ready jobs as he promised. >> shovel ready was not as shovel ready as we expected. >> reporter: there is a broad agreement. >> payroll tax benefits, house has passed the year long ex
fence. >> now, we're way waiting action in the senate. he plans to cover some future spending by eliminating bush tax cuts by making more than $250,000 a year. >> we are poised to spend trillion dollars more on what a temporary tax break for the wealthy americans. >> all the things he is talking about, they are covering 8% of his spending increases. the other 92% is borrowed money. >> reporter: ultimately the argument over growth and jobs can be created faster by tax cuts or government spending. an argument that only a presidential election may be able to settle. jim angle, fox news. >> lawmakers in the senate held a vote concerning legislation aimed at preventing members of the congress from cashing in based on insider information. shannon bream is following the story for us.
they issued a statement strongly supports the senate bill by a vote of 93-2 just moments ago with senators voting to move it forward. >> send me a bill that bans insider trading by members of congress and i will sign it tomorrow. >> the president's challenge first, sponsored by democrats and republicans. it's aimed at cracking down by insider information on basis of information not available. >> the try to begin to restore some of the confidence. >> harry reid predict the senate bill will be passed by the end of this week. >> members of congress are not above the law. you must play by the same rules other americans play by. >> then the focus will shift to the outcome where eric cantor is
facing criticism that legislation issued introduced appears to be stalled, even though 250 co-sponsors including 89 republicans. cantor's office says he wants and an expanded version that will deal with stock trades but also prevent all federal officials and employees from using insider information for profit in other areas. house republican shaken duffy has introduced a member of senior staffers to put into a blind trust and report all transactions within three days. >> if bill gates comes in, microsoft, meeting will go, hey, what is going on. >> reporter: he has announced he will allow amendments which could slow i it down but could resolve some of the concerns on both sides of the hill about potential loopholes that may need to be closed. >> brett: shannon, thank you.
the top election official in one state is accused of voter fraud. politically the i-4 corridor in florida is crucial. interstate 4 runs from tampa to orlando to daytona beach. it runs through seven struggling counties including polk county. housing is a major issue in all seven of the counties. just up the road, nearly a third of the homeowners are in foreclosure or seriously delinquent. in all seven of the counties, almost half of the homeowners are under water. they owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth. housing is a big issue in florida. we'll be right back.
>> brett: gorgeous sun set here in tampa. jury selection was held that mixed partisan politics and domestic situation right out of real it tv. >> so help me god. >> so help me god. >> indiana's top election official is accused of voter fraud. charlie white faces seven felony counts, including fraud, theft and voting with a false ballot. he was allegedly registered to vote to use his ex-wife's address and living out of the district. but the wife said he spent four nights a week because he and his new wife didn't want to live together before marriage. white wouldn't comment in court but in a recent interview said
he didn't do anything other politicians don't do. >> i abide by the same laws everybody else abide by. >> republican governor mitch daniels has called on him to resign but the indiana republican party has stopped short of that. state democratic party says he should go. >> when the top person, i don't have to follow the laws. it says to people, i don't have to follow them either. >> reporter: recount commission has backed white staying in office but a judge ordered him out. democrat that he defeated should be sworn in. a move that has been stayed pending appeal. the lawyer says unlike other voter fraud no one tried to steal an election. >> trying to disenfranchise people. we're talking about one vote. >> if he is convicted. white will be removed from office. that the man whose job to
protect the inspect of elections cities sits in courtroom. >> brett: no grapevine tonight so we can bring you more primary coverage from florida. >> when you think of the cuban american population in florida, you think of little havana, in miami. there are pockets of cuban american communities like here. latino registered voters in florida break down this way. 32% cuban, 28% puerto rican and 9% mexican. they don't all vote the same but immigration issues are big and politicians do try to attract that voting bloc. we'll be back after this.
>> brett: one of the great things about taking special report on the road is getting a chance to talk to voters and follow the candidates around and listen to the speeches and how they interact with voters. we tried to track down both the major players in florida earlier today. >> it is my great honor to introduce you the next president of the united states, mitt romney. >> i think the reason on he has been doing so well is because of the last debates.
they heard something they hadn't known, he made $1.6 million in his company, standing up and talking about freddie mac. the very institution that helped the housing crisis. here in florida, if you are part of the housing crisis, the people in florida said we're not going to get behind newt gingrich and we're going to get behind mitt romney. >> the crowds are pretty intense. the latest romney event. we tried to get an interview with governor romney before we wrapped up here. couldn't do it. judging by the crowds here, the enthusiasm for the romney campaign has sunk in across florida. right now the polls are different but it's double digits in lot of polls. averages, they liked what he had to say and newt gingrich was flailing in his address.
30 seconds speaker gingrich was flailing in this campaign. we didn't get a chance to talk to governor romney here. but we did go to a gingrich event where we caught up with speaker gingrich. >> listen, there is still a cans. polls are polls. you don't know until election day. >> no matter what happens here. you are moving on. you say you are going to go to the convention? >> the conservative movement is not going to sit by and let a massachusetts liberal who is pro-abortion, pro-gun control, pro-tax increase, whose romney care was described as equivalent of obamacare and george soros he would be happy with obama or romney. that is george soros. they are not going to sit back, let's let wall street and goldman sachs buy the election. you are going to see a real
grassroots fighter. >> brett: today you mentioned romney care and catholic hospitals and governor romney eliminated serving kosher food under medicaid. do you think governor romney was engaged in a war on religion. >> he is extraordinarily insensitive to religious freedom in america, obama administration is clearly engaged in a war on religion. every church in florida and every church in the country read a letter about obama administration's assault on the catholic church which is anti-abortion, any church who has adoption for couples that are man and woman. people don't understand how the is secular state is
anti-instrument of coercion. >> brett: republicans are concerned, governor romney could be the republican nominee depending on how you do. >> they ought to look at his record. >> brett: tell me where i'm wrong. >> i frankly didn't know the kosher food cut out until the "new york post" reported it yesterday. every time we peel back the onion there is something new there. >> brett: you move on to nevada and continue to fight for delegates and -- >> romney is going to come out tonight with 3-4% of the delegates that you need to be nominated. the idea after florida this is over makes no sense. we go into a long stretch, we have no evidence he can get 50%. we'll see how he does tomorrow night. until he starts winning 50% or more, if he takes my vote or santorum's vote it's bigger.
>> you think republicans are going to sit by and let george soros and goldman sachs pick the republican nominee? >> brett: mr. speaker, we'll follow you. thank you. >> romney campaign in response said they thought all of this talk about religious insensitivity was flailing from speaker gingrich and desperate. the florida primary and what comes next.... ♪ >> brett: we've seen the commercials, the villages, florida's friendliest hometown. its major stop for politicians. the villages is a stop where a lot of people come to retire but not it's not a monolithic voting bloc. there are people from all over
he has been flailing around a bit trying to go after me. you shake your head. it's painfully revealing to watch. >> brett: two major candidates here in florida today battling it out ahead of the big primary. we take the real clear average of polls. there are many different polls. one has romney up 20 points, one has i am up only 5 points. there are lot of new polls factored into real clear politics, romney at 41.6.
if you take a look at spending. the amount of money has been spent. romney campaign spent $7 million. super pac supporting romney almost $11 million. 17,791. gingrich, $1.2 million. super pac supporting gingrich, roughly 4,200,000. a lot of money and disparity between the candidates is great. let's bring in our national panel, bill kristol and charles krauthammer. first, what you heard today on the trail from the two main candidates who are battling it out. your thoughts on this battle. >> i thought what newt said a few minutes ago, he is talking
about hanging in there. presumably she going to lose in florida but he will go all the way to tampa, the convention. i don't think it's a bluff. it's not just because as he said from here on out, most of races are proportional. so it's extremely unlikely. almost everybody would drop out that romney would have a majority. there is also a new rule by the republicans, if you have a plurality of delegates in just five of the states, meaning he has already has one in south carolina and one have in georgia. it could be guam or village inislands and d.c. then you have your name in the convention. that wouldn't be just a thumb in the eye presumably in f romney is the nominee, it would be way to veined indicate his campaign. would it keep alive the idea if there is a fractured meeting in tampa, that somehow the
delegates decided after a ballot they want a conservative candidate, it could be him. so i think he is in it. it's going to get much more nasty. i don't see him dropping out along the way. >> brett: your thoughts on this battle. each of these candidates because it's so negative down here. the unfavorables are going up for both mitt romney and newt gingrich? >> i know. it's becoming a problem of the very divided republican party. i think what newt gingrich is finding. he a front-runner. he has more delegates. he won the last contest. he made history in south carolina but in ten days, he is too toxic a choice for the establishment and it's going to be wipeout for him. i think charles is right.
he stays on to criticize to chip away at his electability along the way. but the opportunities begins for him after florida. think we'll see mitt romney, his win tomorrow night with a big margin, could enjoy his stable momentum so far. i think he goes into places like nevada, he has more money and more endorsements and more support and newt gingrich become more unpopular. >> brett: bill, you are not surprised that the campaign doesn't focus on the big polls, but the ones that are tight and northern part of florida with a heavy tea party presence could surprise people and even if they lies it could be tighter than we think it is. that is the gingrich campaign. also as you look as the calendar going forward, you have february which is spread out. you have nevada caucuses and you
have colorado, minnesota and missouri on the 7th. main caucuses on the 11th and michigan on the 28th. then in march, it is delegate bonanza. gingrich campaign is saying we could pick up a lot of delegates more than 50 here in florida. what about that scenario. >> first on florida, paul ryan will be close second. daniels will win and rubio will be third. i'm enjoying my fantasy than the florida pry pear i got to say. going forward on the other hand, i obviously mitt romney will be strong shape and probably will win pretty handily. win by 15-18 points. these caucuses are unpredictable ron paul, on santorum ran well
in minnesota. but the primary in february. obviously if mitt romney sweeps them all he'll be in driver's seat but upsets can happen, i think. >> brett: charles, we should point out the other two candidates weren't campaigning here in florida but they were campaigning elsewhere. take a listen. >> we're going to stay in and see what comes of it. who knows what will come of the other twa candidates. there has been lots of ups and downs. maybe there will be some downs and we may be able to pick up
the pieces. >> brett: that seems like a common theme. there may be downs and other two candidates, santorum and paul be able to pick some states, us a mentioned some of the caucuses. >> i think the real sleeper event could be in missouri. missouri doesn't have any delegates. its beauty contest but gingrich isn't on the ballot. i think for santorum, this is his great opportunity. he would be essentially one on one with romney. of course, ron paul will get his share of the vote. it would be a place where he could say, assuming he were to win, he could say look. gingrich is the one that drops out and not me, i'm the one that can unite the non-establishment, the ones who are more of the regular parties. ones more in touch with the grassroots against romney and win in a general election. one opportunity particularly because he has tried to take the
high road as we saw in the debate last week. he is the one that is probably the least toxic as the compromise nominee in the romney camp or the newt camp. i think he could present himself that way and that will be his one big shot. >> brett: thanks for the brady bunch panel tonight. up next, a panel of florida experts what we may expect in tuesday's primary. attention - americans living with limited mobility. what do you do when you can no longer get around like you used to? when you fear losing your independence? who do you call? call hoveround now, to see if you qualify for america's premier power chair. hi, i'm tom kruse, inventor and founder of hoveround. now you can do more, see more, enjoy life more. here's why hoveround makes it easier than any other power chair. hoveround is more maneuverable to get you through the tightest doors and hallways. more reliable. hoveround employees build your chair, deliver your
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welcome or panel. political science professor of south florida, craig patrick, political editor of fox 13 and william marsh, senior writer for the tampa tribune. where does it stand now, you get the feeling there has been a separation between romney and gingrich. locally, what is the feeling on the ground? >> same kind of feeling. i have to tell you, floridians feel like we've been on rollercoaster with a full spin. but there has been a rapid fire of negative ads almost nonstop. candidate visits and two major debates really did help romney separate himself. >> brett: you talk about ads, you can't go too long without an ad coming up? >> that is where romney has an advantage. you combine with the pac
supporting the campaigns, disparity of $17 million to $5 million. gingrich is getting outspent 3-1. that is why the numbers are breaking to romney's favor and, women they tend to focus on pocketbook issues. many of them are gravitating toward mitt romney on grounds of the perception he is more electable. >> brett: we talk about florida has one state voting but there are a number of states together because they are so difficulty demographically? >> it's so different? >> one state in the nation that closely reflects the demographic breakdown of the nation as a whole, but other than that, very close to the national demographic breakdown. >> brett: big early voting,
absentee voting. that would largely help the romney campaign? >> some polls suggest that the people that have already voted by early voting are leaning strongly toward romney. it's likely that one out of four of the votes that will be cast in this election already have been cast. >> brett: how big is the tea party here? how big a presence is it. you get anecdotal sufficient about gingrich's events being packed with people who aren't happy. what about that? >> tea party has been splintered in florida begins in 2010. you have those, there is too much big brotherism and intrusion into rights. and others that say government is overreaching and those leaning toward gingrich but the ones that are concerned about the national debt and deficit
and the finances and the direction of these country's economy, they are leaning toward romney. that explains the other states, you see splintering and you see it vividly here. >> brett: if you think about the issues on floridians. where do people stack up? >> it goes back to what you were saying. this is three states in one. it depends on the region. really south is north and north is south. social issues may be more important in north florida. then you have the south that tends to vote with more liberal blue states of the north. then you have the middle the i-4 quarter, this area runs right down the middle. this is the area where people are most likely to be assessing their options. a big chunk of the manufacturing sector, what is left of it in the state of florida. here is the focus is on the economy. it most certainly on national
debt and government spending. >> brett: we forget we are in the heat of this primary race but this is setting up to a general election in florida will play a pivotally in that battle? >> obviously, it will. it has for the last two elections, it's not too much of an exaggeration the candidate that wins florida wins the white house. the republican candidate, conventional wisdom, the republican cannot win the white house without winning florida. if a democrat wins florida that is enough to swing the race zbroobt do you think turnout will be high? >> yes. based largely very high number of absentees and early voters, total turnout of 2 million out of 4.4 million registered republicans. that is even higher than the rate when it was about 1.8 million.
>> in the last election 2008, 51% and i'm sure it will be well over that. >> brett: this race has taken so many different turns? >> absolutely. it's a political junkie's heaven. in the i-4 corridor, politicians highway to heaven. you live where 45% of registered voters and you win. though the candidates are going back and forth, tampa and orlando or head south to name area or jacksonville. >> brett: down the road here, anything that the national media misses when covering florida politics, somehow florida media say come on you forgot this? >> i think two things, first of all is the fact the pop latino population is not cohesive and secondly also the senior vote. they are driven by nuances in the senior vote, there is an
assumption that everybody is over 65 and all they care about is social security. but boomers are more concerned about that. so i think that is one of big areas of misconception. >> it is highly probable that florida will decide the republican nomination because like william said, it is all about florida, mathematically you can't win the white house if you are republican. you look at the states after florida, arizona, michigan, colorado, they will look as the returns in florida. they are more likely to vote the way florida voted and follow the lead. >> to go back to what susan said latinos in florida are not homogeneous but the two large parts of hispanics are puerto ricans and cubans that have an
automatic pathway to citizenship if they can get one foot on to dry land. they are not subject to deportation. so they don't follow the typical hispanic thinking of hundred percent on immigration issues. >> brett: thank you so much. real pleasure. stay with us. we'll be right back from tampa right after this.
>> bret: finally tonight, a reminder that tomorrow our florida primary coverage begins from america's election headquarters in new york. 6:00 p.m. eastern right here, "special report." megyn kelly and i will take you through the results and all the analysis through the evening. special thanks to that's amore restaurant here in harbor island. we havha