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tv   Town Hall with Howard Schultz  FOX News  April 4, 2019 3:30pm-4:30pm PDT

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thank you for fox, thank you once i know what a business is truly worth, for all being here. we can make better informed investment decisions. it's great to be in kansas city. it's a real honor. thank you so much. that's why i go beyond the numbers. >> martha: thank you, ♪ howard. we want to jump right in. we have a great crowd here. we will let them do a lot of the talking tonight. our first question comes from john brungart who i >> the race to 2020 in high believe is right behind us over here. gear. >> more than a dozen eyeing hello, john, what's your question? >> hi, john. the democratic nomination >> mr. schultz, considering looking to take on president trump. >> today i announce. the current controversy surrounding joe biden, where would you draw the line on >> i am running. >> i am running. >> for president. personal behavior that >> president. disqualifies someone from >> president. >> president of the united running for political states of america. office? >> oh, i think we are living [cheers] ♪ at a time right now, john, >> martha: internet former ceo of starbucks billionaire where our values, level of howard schultz. >> thank you. >> bret: he says is he thinking of a third option. civility, and character that >> our dysfunctional two we are observing in the white house has set a tone party system has fueled political extremism on the of incitement for the last far left and the far right. two years. that's very troubling to me. in terms of vice president >> martha: seriously considering running as an independent. biden, i think the voters >> somebody has to stand up have to decide whether or and say not only are things broken but the american not he is suitable to run people deserve better. for office for the president of the united states and
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whether or not he should be president. >> bret: tonight from kansas but there is no room in city, missouri, a town hall with howard schultz and his american life to do anything that would disrespect women, vision for the future of america ♪ ♪ disrespect anybody whose station in life, color of their skin, ethical background, none of that. and i think this is a time in america and that's why >> good evening from the grand hall of power and i'm so concerned about the country where we must light here in kansas city embrace a common purpose the site of the first fox news town hall of the 2020 which is values-based, based election season. on principle and respect for i'm bret baier. >> martha: good evening, everybody from kansas city everyone. i'm martha mccallum as you >> martha: howard. [applause] saw in that introduction, he >> martha: let me follow up has not yet declared his on that. today there were three more accusers who came forward candidacy but former starbucks ceo howard schultz who say he made them feel is already causing political waives as he considers a uncomfortable. what we know right now is third party run for the this disqualifying for him white house. as a potential presidential >> bret: he has been accused candidate. >> who i'm saying there is of being a political spoiler no reason for anyone to believe that these women are already, but he says he is not telling the truth. offering a different choice. it's really up tout voters we will get intery much. whether or not vice president biden is disqualified to run. i think this kind of behavior certainly is inconsistent with how to
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behave and how to respect women it's concerning. however vice president biden has served the country for 40 years. has been vice president for 8 years. the only thing i would ask is one question. why is this coming up now i'm not questioning women on any level. it's concerning to me on the eve of whether o was announcings going to run. it's concerning. >> bret: you know his politics. you know his time as vice president for the obama administration. would you vote for joe biden? >> well, i'm going to vote for myself. [laughter] [applause] >> martha: are you running? >> we have 18 months to decide that it doesn't matter if joe biden is in or out you make that decision separate of him? >> the merits of whether or not i'm going to run for president has nothing to do
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with the who is going to be the democratic nominee. as you know, i have been very public about my concern about how far left the democratic party is leaning. and i think it's a great opportunity given how extreme both parties are, the vast majority of americans are in the middle. i'm a centrist. i have been a lifelong democrat but the democratic party left me. i didn't leave them. >> bret: all right. brandon has the next question. i think brandon is over here. hi, brandon. >> hi, how are you? at what point would you bow out of the race if all indications are your candidacy would split the vote or hand president trump a second term? is there a point at which you would make that decision. >> let me answer that first of all, thank you for the question. let me answer it this way. let's ask the question why am i here and why am i considering doing this? first issue, my love of the country, most importantly. wanting to do everything for families who are being left
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behind. i grew up in public housing. i know what it means to be poor, to have the shame of being poor. 40% of american families today don't have $400 in case of an emergency. i want those families to have the opportunity of the american dream. the third thing is i want to restore trust and confidence in government and in our leaders. the american people have lost trust in congress and in this president. and the last thing is and, perhaps, most importantly, is that this is an opportunity right now for us to recognize that things aren't exactly going the way they should. this is a great evening because there are republicans, democrats, and independents in this room. this is a no hate zone. and i want to do everything i can to find the common purpose of our common values and bring the american people together. in terms of your specific question: what i said publicly i'm not going to be a spoiler.
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what does that mean? if a democrat runs who resembles bernie sanders who says he is a democratic socialist, donald trump is going to get reelected. if howard schultz is in the race, i feel strongly that lifelong republicans on the character issue alone and i'm not going to bash the president on any level today. i'm not here for that i want to talk about the future of the country, but on the character issue alone, lifelong republicans will not vote for bernie sanders. but they might vote for somebody who is independent, a centrist and wants to restore a faith and confidence in the promise of the country. thank you. [applause] >> martha: so speaking of that obviously third party candidates have drummed up enthusiasm in the past from a slice of the electorate. and they have also evoked some anger from the parties that they ended up taking votes from. let's just a short clip look back at some of those, watch this. >> okay. >> bret: third party or independent candidates have a long and storied past in
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our country. >> enough wasting our votes on a failed two party system. >> bret: only a handful have made an impact on elections. in 1892, an iowa populist named james b. weaver earned more than 1 million popular votes. years after serving as president, theodore roosevelt famously mounted a failed third party run in 1912 winning 88 electoral votes versus woodrow wilson's 435. ross perot was the last third party candidate to make it to the debate stage. >> thank you. >> in 1992, the billionaire won 19% of the popular vote. he was widely criticized for splitting the republican vote. he followed that effort up in 196 winning 8%. in 2,000, winning 3% of the popular vote ralph nader's run blamed in part for costing al gore the presidency.
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so i want to take a quick poll of this audience. if you could, show of hands, in this room, who thinks if mr. schultz ran as an independent that essentially would be handing a second term to president trump. raise your hands if you believe that. >> not that many. >> bret: okay. what do you make of that? >> i think that's quite encouraging. i mean, obviously, what you just showed is emblematic of the past. let's talk about the future and where we are today. so, first off, and i think this is really important. certainly in my lifetime i'm 65 years old. i have never witnessed such a divide in the country, such a level of disparity between people on the left and people on the right and the fact that both parties have gone so far extreme in terms of their ideology. but at this moment in time, we are sitting with $22 trillion of national
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debt, $500 billion of interest a healthcare system that's not working, an immigration problem that we all know exists. a k through 12 problem not working. our standing in the world very questionable. all of this and so the question that i would ask this audience to you that posed the question is how many people in this audience believe that the u.s. government is doing well by you, your family, and the american people? raise your hand. how many? so i would say the majority of people, correct me if i acorrect me if iam wrong, the mf people don't feel as if the country is meeting or at a minimum exceeding their expectations. now, in terms of presidential elections, in the past, over the last 30 years, 8 to 10 battleground states basically decided the presidential election. if i enter the race, we have identified over 40 states
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that for the first time in 30-plus years everyone's vote and everyone's voice will matter. so if you are a democrat in arizona, your vote doesn't matter today. if you are a republican in california, same thing. if president trump does not win the state of texas, chances are he can't get to 270. the last thing i would say i know it's a long answer but it's important. 42% of the american people are so fed up, exhausted, i hate to use the word but disgusted with the fighting every single day between both parties and the inability of collaboration, cooperation, compromise that 42% self-identify themselves as an independent. >> bret: the people who did raise their hands obviously think president trump is doing something right. is he doing something right? >> i think he has done some things right. i think he -- yeah, he has done some things right. but on the character issue. on the morality issue. we could ask this audience another question. how many of you who are children in this audience would like to see the
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behavior of your children model the behavior of this president? how many? [laughter] i mean -- >> martha: howard, let me ask you this, when you look at the electoral college and you talk about texas. president trump won 52% of the vote in texas. do you really think he is going to lose texas this time around and right now his folks are shoring up their party leadership, the chairs in ohio and pennsylvania. >> yeah. >> martha: they are not concerned about you. why do you think that there is a lane for you in texas and what other states do you think you could win? >> yeah. i think there is no question that given the work that i have done and the team -- and my team has done over the last 18 months, that there is a pathway to 270. i'm not going to get into what state we are going to win, but let me just say this: in 1987, starbucks had 11 stores and 100 employees. no one would give me a chance to build a national company.
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today there is 30,000 starbucks stores in 78 countries. we have employed over 3 million people in the last 40 years. we currently employ 400,000. we gave healthcare, we gave ownership, we gave free college tuition. our stock price is up over 25,000%. what is that? that is entrepreneurial leadership, imagination, and the ability to do something that people said couldn't be done. now, i'm not saying that a proxy to win the presidency. but what i see is a significant opportunity because the american people are longing for one thing, character and leadership. >> bret: let's get back to the audience. sarah has our next question. sarah? there you are. >> mr. schultz, what are your views on abortion? >> well, i think of all the questions that could be asked tonight, clearly that's a very emotional one for so many people in america and has been an issue that has divided so many people.
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i understand that. so i want to be el empathetic and as much passion as i can about the question. in many ways the question has been answered by the supreme court but in view of that i want to give you my answer and that is i have been a person that is pro-choice. i recognize that every woman has -- this is such a personal issue and it's between her and her god as to what that decision should be, and in my view there should be no abortion that is in the last fry messster. president clinton said something a long time ago. [applause] president clinton said something a long time ago that does apply and he said abortion should be safe, legal and rare. and that's where i am. thank you very much. [applause] flush. >> martha: do you worry at all, you know, when you want
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to court republicans that even just being pro-choice is going to cross you off the list for a significant number of them? >> i think that i want to demonstrate three things. and everything i'm going to try and do in this process will go through this lens. i want to be honest. i want to demonstrate a level of trust and confidence in what i'm saying. and i want to be accountable for the results. so, and i think all of that should be wrapped in a degree of civility. i think the american people want authenticity, honesty and character. i'm going to tell people what i believe. people may not agree with me. i understand that. but people are going to know where i stand. >> bret: all right. gary has the next question. gary? which side are you on? >> i'm over here. >> bret: gary is in the back there. hi, gary. >> thank you. mr. schultz, welcome to the heart land of america. >> thank you very much. >> how would you characterize the situation at our southern border and
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immigration system overall? and whatever level of urgency you describe it, what specifically would you do in order to solve it and, particularly in your case, if you were to win the white house, you would be a third party candidate. how would you work with the two parties in order to implement what you have got in mind? >> yeah. so given the -- what's happening at our southern border, this is such an important question. i think it's a question of humanity and certainly a question about legal immigration. i want to say a few things in order to frame the -- frame my answer. i don't know how many people are aware in this audience but president bush 43 and president obama both, while they were president, submitted to congress an immigration bill. in both cases, the opposition took that bill, rejected it and would not pass it. now, if i took those two bills today and i showed
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everyone in this audience, this is one bill and this is the other, aside from president bush's bill, which had a guest worker program, no one in this audience would be able to tell republican vs. democrat. so why didn't it work? it did not work because the other party was unwilling to provide the president and his party a victory. and that is the problem that existed then and that is the problem that existed now. i can promise you that nancy pelosi, under any circumstances will not give president trump a victory on immigration. now, in terms of the answer to the question, i have gone down to the southern border, to mcallen, texas, i've seen it firsthand. and i want to say what i -- i want to share with you what i saw. and what i saw in my mind is a fracturing of american values and a fracturing of humanity. we should not be stripping mothers and fathers from
Check
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their children. and we should not do anything that even comes close to what happened a long time ago where we put people in intermment camps. that's what it reminded me of. now, the issue that we have to recognize is this. president trump is correct, and the republican leadership is correct that we need fierce, strict levels of control on that border to keep bad team from coming, in illegal immigrants should not come in. i don't want to get into a wall or anything but i agree we should fund whatever we need to do to secure the border. i get that. now, the humanity issue -- one more thing. the democrats are not correct we should be funding ice and gives them all the tools and resources they need to secure the borders and arrest the bad people. whatever they need, give them all the resources. but when it comes to the dreamers, this is where i
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have a problem with the republicans. our country is based on immigration. almost everyone in this room is here because someone came before us. in my heart the dreamers should be given a pathway to immigration. now we have the second issue, 11 to 12 million people are here unauthorized. what should we do with them? many of them are here because they came here and their visa expired. they didn't cross the border. they we just need a better visa process. we're not going to send 11 million people back. now, it takes seven years to get a green card and get legal immigration, become a citizen. let's find a pathway for them. and then lastly, lastly, the republicans and this president has weaponized this issue as has the democrats. in my heart, i believe they would rather have this has an issue to fight over than to solve for the american
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people. >> bret: let me just finish to his point, it is a crisis. is that what you are calling it? >> it is a crisis but it can be solved. it cannot be solved currently because of the ideology of both parties. but, if i was fortunate enough to become president, this is what i can promise you. i'm a about accountability. i'm about results. i would bring the people into the room, i would say you cannot come in here with ideology or ego. what i want to do is i want to put an empty chair in the room and that chair represents the american people. we're not going to leave the room until we solve the problem for the american people. the problem that we have with both parties, the american people are not in the room. i will tell you who is in the room. self-interest, ideology, self-preservation, and their ability to get reelected. they spend more time on both sides raising money to get
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reelected than they do solving of problems. it's time to change. >> martha: all right. we're going to. [applause] [cheers] >> martha: all right. we're going it be right back with howard schultz who took starbucks from a coffee company to a household name. >> bret: and starbucks employee gets to ask the former boss a question. when we return live from kansas city. ♪ ♪ with all that usaa offers why go with anybody else? we know their rates are good, we know that they're always going to take care of us. it was an instant savings and i should have changed a long time ago. we're the tenney's and we're usaa members for life. call usaa to start saving on insurance today.
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i never count trthe wrinkles.s. and i don't add up the years. but what i do count on, is staying happy and healthy. so, i add protein, vitamins and minerals to my diet with boost®. boost® high protein nutritional drink has 20 grams of protein, along with 26 essential vitamins and minerals your body needs. all with guaranteed great taste. the upside- i'm just getting started. boost® high protein be up for life. ♪ >> martha: billionaire howard schultz may have made his name with starbucks but his roots are far more humble. born in 1953, schultz grew up in a public housing project in working class brooklyn. he attended northern michigan university first in his family to graduate from college. >> your station in life does not define you and the
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promise of america that is for all of us. >> schultz and his wife sherri married in 1982 and they raised two children. he started in the starbucks marketing department back when the company only sold coffee beans and offered no seating. the seed of starbucks as it exists was planted on a business trip to italy where he taste you had expresso for the very first time. by the late 1980s, schultz was the ceo of starbucks and the cafe culture he envisioned was taking off across the united states. when schultz left starbucks in 2018 the 80 billion-dollar company was a household name with more than 22,000 stores worldwide. >> bret: welcome back to kansas city a little biopiece there a look back at the life and career of howard schultz. he's with us here for the town hall. with that in mind our next question is from kenny, an
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former employee of cower your company, kenny. >> hi. >> hi, mr. schultz, i'm a 9 year partner and here with fellow partners. >> have you profited from bean stock. >> absolutely, it's amazing. [applause] >> that's not what my question is about. also benefited from the healthcare plan which is what my question is all about. how do you plan to model what you provided for starbucks partners for healthcare on a larger scale for our country. >> yes. first off, thank you for very much all you are doing at starbucks over a nine-year period. i appreciate that for those of you who don't know much about what he is asking about, over 20 years before the affordable care act, starbucks was the first company in the u.s. to provide comprehensive health insurance to all employees, including part time people. [applause] so, we certainly have a healthcare crisis in america. and i would bifurcate the question because it's two things we have to solve for.
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one is that over the nine years that the affordable care act has been in place, which i was a supporter of, unfortunately premiums have doubled. we have got to get the costs down. that's one thing. then we have to create access. probably close to 30 million people now are uninsured. and so there is a few things. we need more transparency in the system. we need more competition. we need more choice. and one thing that really bothers me is that the united states government is not negotiating with pharmaceutical companies on drug prices. and, yet, those same drugs are being sold in europe at a lower price. so we have to be able to do that. but the real issue, i think, is how do we bend the cost curve? and i would say and this will be news, is i would be a proponent, a strong pro-penitent of universal catastrophic coverage. and if we did that, we would begin to lower the cost and that would have a
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significant impact. it would be catalytic on bringing that premium down. i do believe strongly that every american has the right for affordable care, affordable healthcare in america and i think what we did at starbucks, also, should be a model for many, many other companies. the last thing i would say is that the republicans and the democrats are trying to take healthcare away. let me explain that. republicans for nine years are saying -- republican leadership for nine years are saying they want to get rid of the affordable care act but yet for nine years they have not proposed not one, not one idea proposal just get rid of it that's a bad idea. the democrats in the green new deal are saying free medicare for all. 180 million people get their insurance from their employer. that would go away. bad idea. let the market work and let's get these costs down provide more access and specifically universal catastrophic coverage will bring that cost curve down.
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>> bret: let me just say there have been a number of republican plans they haven't landed on a replace and passed it through congress. >> martha: passed in the house. many in the house but not in the senate so you are right. not a comprehensive plan that was completed. >> who am i to debate with you on a republican policy? >> martha: it's just a fact, that's all. those are just facts. >> what i just said is important. both the republicans and the democrats if they have their way, republican also take the affordable care act away. i don't agree with that and the democrats are trying to do something medicare for all 180 million people will lose their insurance. not a good idea. >> martha: gotcha. >> there's a better way. [applause] >> martha: i want to ask you a different question there has been a lot of discussion about gender and wanting to have balanced tickets in this election. have you cory booker and beto o'rourke and joe biden have all essentially said that they would probably pick a woman to balance out their ticket. is that something that you would commit to tonight as well? >> well, first off, i have not even committed to
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running for president yet. [laughter] >> bret: if you want to do that tonight that's fine. [laughter] >> martha: if you were to commit to running, would you commit to having a woman on your ticket? >> i'm not in a position to commit to do that tonight. but, let me try and frame my answer so i'm not misunderstood. 40% of starbucks board of directors are women. 30% of our executives at starbucks are women. my wife and i have a daughter, a granddaughter. i am a strong proponent of women and i am excited to see some women who are now running for president. at this stage, early stage and i will make a decision by the summer, i have to choose the person who has the highest degree of experience and merit. i hope that is a woman but at this point i don't know. >> martha: maybe the more important question for you would be is your running mate a republican or a democrat? >> i didn't expect that question. [laughter]
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i think that person has to be complementary to my skill base and experience. we have to see. i don't know. i don't know the answer to that. >> bret: all right. one of your only fo forrays of starbucks was the supersonics. you sold that nba team it moved to oklahoma there were a lot of people upset, democrats and republicans, they said you were selfish. they said you were a sell-out. >> yeah. >> bret: they are still angry about it. what do you say to those folks who say, listen, if you couldn't make that deal happen, how are you going to run the federal government? >> sure. well, i don't think owning and operating a basketb team with 13 players, it's a relatively small business is a proxy or a question. i think your question is about leadership and responsibility. i take full responsibility for the sale of supersonics and ultimately them moving to oklahoma. it's something i regret. it's a decision i wish i could have over.
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i have apologized to the city of seattle about that. but the issue of running the united states of america today is about character, about leadership, having a vision for the future, about bringing the country together and i think the situation in seattle is unfortunate but certainly not an indication of how i would lead the country. >> bret: you just talked about making deals, that you would bring democrats and republicans together. this obviously was a deal. you know, some people said why couldn't you make it happen? they lost their nba team. >> yeah. >> bret: i'm telling you the seattle feedback. >> sure. i don't want to debate what exactly happened. i take full responsibility for what took place in seattle. i'm sorry for what happened. i learned from my mistake. i think with great power and responsibility you need restraint and unfortunately at the time i was a lot younger, i have learned from that mistake and i can guarantee you one thing, if i decide to run for president, the qualifications of character,
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morality, leadership and the ability to bring the country together to restore our standing in the world, to bring back the promise of the country will be done. >> martha: was one of those lessons putting the state and the people of that state before yourself because one of the criticisms as bret said was that it was a selfish move. that you made a lot of money off the sale and that you put howard schultz before the people of the state. >> the only thing i would try and qualify is we did not make a lot of money on the sonics. we lost money. >> martha: we read it was $52 million is that not correct. >> that's not accurate. that's not the issue. i take responsibility for the seattle supersonics situation. i feel bad about it. i think seattle will get a team, an nba team in the future. but i also think that the preparation i have had over the last 40 years as a public ceo of employing three many people during that period and what my record demonstrates of sharing success of recognizing every business decision is not an economic
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one. business success is shared all of that is my body of worked the seattle situation is unfortunate but not how i would lead the country. >> martha: coming up, a possible future military mom and her question for howard schultz next. ♪ ♪ [applause] ♪ we're going to kansas city ♪ kansas city ♪ here we come ♪ ♪ biopharmaceutical researchers. pursuing life-changing cures in a country that fosters innovation here, they find breakthroughs... like a way to fight cancer by arming a patient's own t-cells... because it's not just about the next breakthrough... it's all the ones after that. introducing miracle-gro's next big thing.
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♪ [applause] >> bret: welcome back to the grand hall at power and light here in kansas city, missouri. our continuing conversation with former starbucks ceo howard schultz. up next, foreign policy and dana has a question for you. dana? back here. >> hi, mr. schultz. >> hi, dana. >> hi. i would like to know where you stand on military support. as a mother of a son who is looking into a military
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career, i am looking for a commander-in-chief that i can trust leading my son into dangerous situations around the world. >> thank you so much for your question and it's a great opportunity to honor the extraordinary men and women who are wearing the cloth of the nation. over the last 10 years or so as a result of secretary gates serving on the starbucks board of directors he has educated all of us about the responsibility we all have, especially to those post 9/11 veterans who are coming home. starbucks has hired over 20,000 veterans and/or their spouses in that period of time. they have done an extraordinary job at starbucks. our family foundation, my wife and i, have invested significantly in building transitional training centers on bases and the reason we did that is we were in a focus group at jblm in seattle and we heard
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a young man transitioning out and he said this to us and that was he had more anxiety about going on the job interview than he would if he was being sent back to iraq. and when we heard that, we understood that we had a moral responsibility. the other thing i say and this is really important. the va has a national budget, believe it or not, of $200 billion: so the commander-in-chief has probably the most difficult, solemn responsibility and decision to make to send extraordinary young men and women into harm's way. but, in my view, the responsibility of the commander-in-chief does not end then. it actually begins when they come home. and the va under a 200 billion-dollar budget, and there are good people who are there, is probably a good example of a government organization that is quite
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bureaucratic and not meeting the needs of post 9/11 veterans. and so, what i can say to you is that i have spent a lot of time and my wife and i sitting with, visiting, i have spoken in okinawa to marines, kuwait, to the army, just last week i was at the air force academy, i have been at west point. i have tremendous respect not only for the persons serving his or her partner and spouse but the entire family of sacrificing so much and if i was fortunate enough to be president, i could promise you that i could maintain that level of commitment, concern and care and i will fix the v.a. [applause] >> martha: howard, looking overseas at foreign policy, there has been a lot of discussion about support for israel on capitol hill lately. >> yes. >> martha: there is concern that there is anti-semitic strain in the democratic
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party. do you believe there is? >> i don't believe there is an anti semitic strain. i was at aipac last week. for some reason most of the democratic candidates who are running for president decided not to go. >> martha: what does that tell you? >> well, i'm going to get to that i think they everywhere making a statement tha -- were a foreign statement more about iran but wasn't about being anti-semitic. i have been asked a question is the country ready for a jewish president, since i'm jewish and the answer is yes. i believe strongly in the goodness and kindness of the american people, and if i run for president and fortunate enough to win, i'm not running for president as a jew. i'm running for president as an american who happens to be jewish. i am concerned that there is a 61% -- [applause] >> thank you. i am concerned that there has been a 61% rise in anti-semitism in america
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today and that bothers me a great deal and something i think we should be dealing with. >> bret: you know, you mentioned iran. president trump obviously pulled out of the iran nuclear deal. >> yeah. >> bret: if you are president, do you go back in? >> well, i disagree with the president not only on pulling out of the iran deal, but in doing so, pulling our troops out of syria, which relates to both iran and russia. i think that decision, that strategic decision in pulling out of syria. >> bret: you know he hasn't done that yet? >> well, he has announced it he has announced a lot of things. i think he announced today that he was thinking of or planning to close down the southern border, which would cost americans a lot of money. but, nevertheless, he did say he was going to pull troops out of syria. the problem with that, the real problem is in doing so, pro-provides russia and iran a significant strong hold in the middle east that is very, very dangerous. also the falsehoods that we had defeated isis is not
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true. and so we should be doing everything we can to feetites sidefeatisis. >> would you go back to the iran nuclear deal. >> i would discuss that with my advisors and make that decision. i would not have pulled us out of the iran deal. i think that was a strategic mistake. >> martha: next question is from john ferguson from the audience. john? >> how are you, mr. schultz? i was wondering with the economy doing well what would you do better or differently than president trump to put money back into people's pockets? >> yeah. well, i'm glad you asked that question because there are two economies in america today. there is president trump's and republican leaders' economy, which the president generally uses the stock market as a proxy for the economy. and i give the president credit for the economy being
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robust for many, many americans. but what did he do? at a time in america when we have $22 trillion of debt, he gave a tax cut to corporate america of 21%. i was a corporate ceo. i did not think that was a good idea. and he lowered taxes for the wealthy. the wealthy in this country should be paying more in taxes and getting less. we should thought do anything that puts more tax burden on the middle class and working class families. we should do everything we can from the state and federal level to ensure the fact that people who now believe that they do not have access to the american dream or the promise of america that we provide that. now, how do we do that? there is an investment tax credit, there are ways to invest in education. but there is certainly many things that we must do to recognize that we have an economy that is bifurcated.
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and we must do everything we possibly can to provide hope and opportunity and one thing we have to do, this is important, is that 5 million young americans ages 18 to 24. 24, many of whom are african-american and latino, are not in school and not in work. what we have learned is that that first job at the age of 17 or 18 or 19 is key to long-term success. so, creating an environment where we create that first job in america. so people get on the ladder they get self-h self-esteem and start earning money and have a purpose. we also have learned if they don't get that first job between 17 and 19, bad things happen. if i was president, i can promise you that the opportunity youth of america, 5 million strong would be a primary source of my focus to do everything we could to make sure that first job is linked to the
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opportunities that young people in america need, especially people who are working class families, who are being left behind. thank you. [applause] >> martha: you have employment numbers that came out recently that showed that people are a high school education have increased jobs more than any other group in the last cycle. construction jobs have been increasing at a pretty good clip. so, you know, what would you do that isn't already being done, i guess part of that question and the other part is in terms of policy the one thing i heard just then is that you would raise taxes on the wealthy and raise taxes on corporations. is there admission else that we should know that you would do to make things better for those that think things are doing well or in good shape. >> i think you are asking me a good question. i will get to the tax on the wealthy. i think that probably will be interesting for your viewers. >> bret: all viewers. >> so president trump gave
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21% tax rate to corporations. i never would have done that i would have looked at 25% or 26% and i would have incentive corporations to do the right thing by providing college education, healthcare, job training, job skills but i would have never given it for free. in addition to that i think wealthy americans, millionaires, billionaires, whatever you want to call them, need to be paying more taxes and getting less. >> martha: what would be the cut off for that? >> bret: what's your number? >> martha: what salary would you start. >> over the last 30 years the number that has worked for the country has been about 39%, 40%. >> martha: you say millionaires, billionaires so starting with millionaires? or because some people call wealthy people people who make $100,000 a year. >> i don't think it's 100,000. but suffice it to say that for us to be able to dig our way out of the problem we have, not only with the national debt and the deficit and the trillion dollars that the president is adding. we must look at
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entitlements, and we must recognize that we must mean test this to a point where wealthy americans need to be paying more and get less. and if you poll them, they will say i'm willing to pay more taxes as long as i have some confidence that the government is going to spend my money well. so that is what we need to do. restore confidence in people's understanding that the government is going to work for them. >> bret: thank you. coming up. lightning round when we return live from kansas city. ♪ ♪ who's idea was this? ♪ ♪ car vending machines and buying a car 100% online.vented
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we really pride ourselvesglass, on making it easy to get your windshield fixed. with safelite, you can see exactly when we'll be there. saving you time for what you love most. >> kids: whoa! >> kids vo: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace ♪ up. up. down. down. ah ah! that's one. up. that's two. down. down. get down, get down. >> martha: welcome back, everybody. i want to get one more audience in before lightning round and it is from faith. faith? where is faith? >> bret: back here. march back behind us.
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>> thank you so much for coming. my question for you is this the current trade war with china is hurting american pharmacy. what woulhurt -- farmers. what would you do to help alleviate or fix this problem. >> problem with china u.s. relations. let me say very quickly that i probably have been to china more than almost any other public ceo over the last 10 years because starbucks has a big business in china. when president trump took the u.s. out of the trans-pacific partnership that was a tremendous strategic mistake. there were 19 countries who were going to be part of that consortium. and would woul we would have bee to convince china to play by the rules of those 19 countries. not only that we would have gotten a tremendous amount of revenue and trade and growth as a result of that. what's going on right now is really a tragedy because this is a trade and tariff war that is causing farmers across the country, steel
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people -- steelworks in the country a consumer tax and their business is under water. in addition to that there is no strategy, that i can recognize, to get us out of this. what's going to happen is it's going to be like a nato thing that he is going to have a big signing and it's not going to be anything really in it that demonstrates success. we also need china's cooperation in north korea. china now has no incentive to help us. we need to be really tough on china in terms of human rights. the monetary policy of china, but that requires statesmanship, diplomacy and a real understanding of the values and what china is trying to do. china is not an enemy of america. russia is an enemy of america. china is a fierce competitor. what is now necessary is we need to go back to the table with a level of understanding of what is in the best interest of both countries and the rest of the world. and if i was president we would be back into tpp and
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we would solve this problem. i think it's really important because china is trying to do something and they are on their way to do it and that is to displace america as the number one economic power. we can't allow that to happen. again, lack of leadership, lack of thoughtfulness and not taking the advice of his advisors. >> bret: all right. we're going to move on. [applause] >> bret: let's get a lightning round of questions here. obviously, quick questions, quick answers. ideally 15 seconds. but we will see. >> okay. >> bret: first up, you have said you believe that when you choose a supreme court justice, you should get someone with two thirds support. >> yes. >> bret: name one judge in this current political environment who would get two thirds support? >> john roberts. >> bret: but now you think john roberts would get two thirds. >> i think he would. >> bret: john roberts is your model for supreme court justices going forward. >> yes, he is. he was a conservative pick. but i think two things and i know you want to go quick, but the supreme court and the fed should not be a tool
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of the president. and should not be a tool of either political party. the supreme court and the fed should be independent, agnostic, and represent the entire -- >> okay. >> martha: all right. today mayor pete buttigieg of south bend says he supports reparations for the descendents of slaves. other candidates have also said they do think there should be reparations. do you? >> i would rather look forward. there are a number of groups, not only african-americans, certainly this country has not overcome the stain of slavery. i recognize that i would rather look forward. what i said publicly a week ago one idea is to make a significant investment in education. that could begin with historical black colleges. i would look forward. that doesn't mean on any level i don't have the sensitivity and understanding of what has taken place in this country and we certainly still have
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racial unjustice and racism in america that we need to deal with. >> martha: but no to the question of reparations? >> yes. >> martha: okay. >> bret: which one country represents the single biggest threat to the u.s. >> there is no doubt in my mind that it is russia. russia is an enemy of america. putin is a cold blooded killer. this president has turned a blind tie russia and every single day what is going on is russia is doing everything possible to disrupt our democracy, our elections, and we are not seeing it because it's cyber warfare. and in many ways this -- this is not to sound hyperbolic, in many ways what russia is doing is an act of war. russia is an enemy of america. make no mistake about that. >> ainsley: but you don't think china is. >> china is a fierce competitor and not an enemy. >> ainsley: all right. will you release your tax returns big topic this week and if so, when? >> if i announce that i'm running for president, within 30 days or so you will have my tax returns.
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it is beyond my comprehension why this president would not release his tax returns and demonstrate the transparency and the character and morality that the american people deserve. [applause] >> bret: when do you make your decision. you are touring the country you are here in kansas city. >> it's not going to happen right now. >> bret: have you time. >> my wife and sherri and i and kids are make it by early summer. >> martha: do you want to run in your heart. >> yeah. i want to do everything i possibly can to restore the promise of america. i know it's. >> bret: you will get a closing statement real quick. show of hands in this room how many of you after what you have heard tonight would like to see mr. schultz run for president as an independent. show of hands. >> thank you very much. >> bret: okay. so you see the room. and with that, you have a closing statement. you have the floor. >> okay. this is not the closing statement i was going to
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make but i think it's apropos. so it's march madness. everyone knows monday night is the big game. okay, so this week tom izzo, from michigan state. someone i went to school with, he was being interviewed and he was asked what kind of kids do you recruit for michigan state? and he said there is three kinds of kids u kids who like it, kids who love it, and kids who live it. i recruit kids who live it. ladies and gentlemen, what we need to do as americans is we need to start living, living our values. we need to start recognizing that we are in this together. every problem that we have can be solved if we come together as a nation. we are all americans. we're here tonight, republicans, democrats, independents. remember, i said no hate zone? this can be done. we can solve our problems and come together. do you agree with me? [cheers]
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>> bret: thank you, mr. schultz. we appreciate you sharing your time. thank you to our audience in kansas city. fank. great questions. we couldn't get to them all. thank you very much. our next town hall happens april 123rd with senator bernie sanders tomorrow. i will be back tomorrow eastern time with "special report" from washington. >> martha: thank you to everybody here tonight. thank you to the audience for coming out. thank you to howard schultz for sitting down with us and we appreciate it and our great crew who did an amazing job putting all this together. stick around in a couple minutes we will be right back with the story tonight. good night everybody from kansas city. >> bret: good night. ♪ ♪
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