Chris Stirewalt, Juan Williams and Gentry Collins discuss the latest from the 2012 campaign trail.
- Duration 13:18
- Date Feb 17, 2012
Chris Stirewalt, Juan Williams and Gentry Collins discuss the latest from the 2012 campaign trail.
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Terms seven your views on contraception and you and then a religious beliefs -- -- comes to the office of the president was certain religious police.
How is it something that would in any way.
-- and I have been wounded -- -- -- let me say we wouldn't be imposed on the American people or is it some minutes yet how how we CNN policy if at all.
Fisher contraception that's not the case it's something that that people have a right to do in this country and and certainly will be -- to do so under the Santorum presidency.
I love the auto industry I wanna see it thrive and grow.
I'm glad it went through -- managed bankruptcy process which I recommend if in the very beginning to -- unnecessary costs and get its footing again I'm delighted.
It's profitable at this this and has had a wild rhythm.
It resembles writing space mountain business.
I've been front runner twice I suspect they'll be the front runner again a few weeks there's a lot of people in Washington aren't all that principle they're just they're listening.
There's so it is pressure's on them.
That avalanche of sound.
Was a snapshot of the campaign trail yesterday.
You heard former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum.
Trying to get away from some comments that his billionaires who back Butler Foster -- made -- that he made about women and the -- That was Mitt Romney sort of defending his prior positions.
About about President Obama is bailout slash rescue of the auto industry that was Newt Gingrich saying what me worry we've got weeks and weeks and then that was Ron Paul saying throw the bums out so.
We're back and we're talking about campaign when he twelve of on the Republican side with Juan Williams who is not.
But we are joined now by gentry Collins who is gentry -- used to be the political director for the Republican National Committee he's from Iowa so he knows how people do this kind of stuff.
Inside his drive -- the end.
And today you are now with -- public affairs here in Washington which means -- finally ready to make some very good okay.
That's that's the truth that not enough power play kind of money but these are you routing and I don't -- and I think Nintendo.
And we should point out.
That the house has just passed.
The bill extending a payroll tax.
Holiday and unemployment insurance.
Looks like it was it looks like it was pretty wide margin.
So that that's done the status quo has been maintained -- -- vote of 293 to 13 to anyone Republicans.
And 41 Democrats saying it -- -- -- that margin for Boehner that's.
I mean 91 for you we've reached a point the Republican guard is -- 91.
91 breaking ranks is not considered a tragedy for him right remarkable as the.
For him because he's a good man I mean I think he's a good leader but you know I'm like on the transportation -- this -- -- -- be his signature item.
He can't get it there.
What -- get it done and you know the the other thing and we will talk about this for so let's do talk about this because it's breaking news.
The issue gentry is that for Republicans.
They've lost the a lot of the will to fight that they had a year ago when they came in under -- esteem.
I think everybody sort of lost world -- I -- I sort of see congress shutting down early for the election is that the sense that you get.
Others say the will to fight in congress may be that the will -- out of the rest of the country not at all I think that.
That that the Republican Party is very energized about beating Barack Obama -- they don't like that the problem is Republican Party has that we have not yet been able to unify behind.
Me a candidate to replace the president and that's becoming an increasingly large problems -- part.
OK now let's move on to other increasingly -- problems for your party which include the demolition.
Derby that is rolling out.
Across the country is these four remaining candidates.
Or spending a lot of time lot of money lot of energy attacking one another including -- -- swing states like Ohio and Michigan which is complicating things.
With independent voters and we talked yesterday about the new Fox News poll that shows both the Republican front runner trailing average eight point five points behind the president that it's Wednesday.
-- of the birth control issue has helped Rick Santorum.
Inside the Republican Party because it's cause.
Republicans -- social conservatives who know that he's been with them all along to rally to his side.
And but is there some danger for him in the primary process.
Well you know you're having a conversation I thought I was just terrific when you're talking about something called you called -- And I think you should share with the Internet audience what it is that you defined -- over.
Oh OK did you gentry human rights overhang is this is the that you do is the best most recent example that we -- of overhang.
Which is in South Carolina the allegations from news second wife about it -- marriage did not hurt him that much.
Because there was a backlash against CNN's John King with the opening question and that debate about like -- is this appropriate and Republicans rally behind Gingrich against those.
Left wing scoundrels in the media like Juan Williams yeah that -- rallied behind Gingrich and it didn't hurt him in South Carolina but by the time you get down to Florida that over and of electability is there and voters in Florida say are we really do we really want well I think OK this guy.
Lead among American women -- Republican women -- who all of a sudden there was a tremendous gender gap in Florida that had not appeared previously and you've got a suspect that it was in reaction to Marianne Gingrich's appearance and her description of how.
Speaker Gingrich are treated here so -- overhang theory.
Audience then would be that now Rick Santorum has.
True believers especially on contraception abortion.
Life rallying behind him and in defense of him yet.
But that it may -- to be a liability going forward that would be the overhang and especially of course.
That's the great theory out there at the conspiracy theory that we're on the Internet so we got it is -- -- -- is that.
The White House loves this right because they want -- have stolen -- nominee because they think he's more.
Easily -- the conspiracy easily -- -- conspiracy theory -- is that the White House colluded with.
The establishment press outlets to get this issue back in the main.
So that it would be that way that when the president came out with his.
Policy on contraception and Catholics etc.
that it would help.
Us informed get back into the mix do you put any stock -- that idea well look.
The reason it happened if it did happen that way is because this president cannot defend his economic record.
We we've had 36 straight months of of high unemployment that's a longer stretch than we've had since the Great Depression.
The CBO came out today and said that in fact the January numbers were not as it was reported real unemployment is 15% this president cannot defend that record in effect moving forward we're gonna have record high gas prices they're moving up earlier than they ever have before.
The president's own budget I contemplates.
Unemployment going up again before the election so they need to change the subjects of course I think there's -- that it probably thrilled about what's going on and our debate right now.
Yeah okay they're just does so there you have it now if the overhang theory is true.
And that what's good for Santorum now could be dangerous for him by the time -- get Super Tuesday.
Let's put in order.
What does Mitt Romney need to do in Michigan and Arizona how does how does is does he need to win both.
Is it enough that he twins one is it enough if and Santorum doesn't win both.
What what does he need want -- First let me just say.
We are witnessing a tremendous.
Delusion it is the right word of money.
Comedy from restore vision which just around the attack and from the Romney campaign.
They outspent Gingrich borderline in Florida -- and destroy him but he hasn't been heard from six.
They are doing much the same thing in Michigan right now and in Arizona.
-- And I think the reason and Arizona and -- in Michigan is they can't afford to lose it I think that.
If I'm betting right now today -- -- sixteen -- correct.
I would bet that I'm.
Romney wins Arizona I wouldn't bat also that Santorum.
Is either going to win ordinarily moves in Michigan is going to be a very close had to.
And that's a bad sign for Iran that this homes these literally born there -- -- -- claims that the from a lot of states but he literally born in Michigan and his -- was the governor three times.
He was he was so is who do you agree do you reject it but you lost Michigan is hugely problematic.
But Michigan is a proportional state so he will take some number of delegates out of their -- while -- was you know what I'm always thinking Arizona.
And -- he moved to Super Tuesday where -- 466.
Delegates in play and every right now I think there's an opportunity for the running camping just what he needs to do he needs to reassert his lead in Ohio Ohio one of the most economically devastated states in the country and yes I'm sorry about it today a lot of moderate Republicans itself.
So if I were governor Romney or governor Romney super back I'd be looking down the road at march 6 and -- be playing just as hard and Ohio this week and Max is I am in Michigan.
What do you think would happen if he loses in Michigan what does that say to voters -- -- Well I would clearly it's a huge problem but.
But let's go live -- these other guys these other guys you you let that happen to one's point.
These other guys are able to in the and so we've now seen Gingrich -- -- -- Santorum do once which is cut their losses someplace and go down the trail and lie in wait for the campaign to come to them Santorum did it very successfully now Gingrich is trying to do it get ahead of the race and be waiting for when Super Tuesday -- its way if you Mitt Romney.
If all you really have his inevitability theory that people the Republicans say I'm voting form because he's going to win anyway and I -- -- speed the plow.
You can't afford law.
The club what I'm suggesting is that what he needs to do is he needs to re assume the mantle of the guy -- could -- the economy -- create jobs and he's going to have a -- Michigan.
I don't know that's a foregone conclusion that ballot is moving that way -- he's going to have a failure in Michigan that means that he's got an opportunity in Ohio I think.
On March 6 -- put put to train back on the track so to speak I would say by the -- and one of the interesting things about Michigan.
Will be to see whether Rick Santorum can sustain the kind of scrutiny that Newt Gingrich was subject to.
Serve -- I'm so glad I'm so glad that you mention that because the Internet would like to know about that.
And we have here we have.
Heather snow and -- that spotlight is on informants or anything in his book.
That will come back to back him yes.
That is accurate.
There's plenty of stuff in there that he wrote that.
Will will be problematic as he tries -- and you've seen trying to explain how he's personally opposed to contraception but thinks that it's okay.
What he has reservations about women in front line positions in the military.
-- thinks that there's that there -- in the army and thinks that it's fine so it's a complicated and tangling.
You know it's all of this stuff gentleman is stuff for the Republicans.
There's -- there's good news if you're talking about your party's issues.
If the national discussion is about your -- issues but it's bad news if you're having fights that are about varies from all.
Relatively insignificant policy differences or maybe big disagreements inside the party but that these are marginal issues.
One though is there -- some hope that for Republicans here.
This process will yield some enthusiasm will yields and activated base.
Well it depends how we define the base -- Because if you define a base in terms of social conservatives who respond to these culture wars issue they're gonna be activated.
And we were talking earlier about overhang well I think that.
Based will be activated in defense of their principals in defense of their champion Rick Santorum -- What we've seen so far the Republican primaries and caucuses though is not much turnout.
We get a decent -- and it's gonna spend what this could be this could be enacted dating thing but it you know would not.
Not be poor you're delete.
You know latte drinking.
-- -- It would be for your hard work in blue collar republic.
-- strike me as a coffee black kind of guy.
We don't -- -- -- that's that's even better you probably just that probably nothing but Levi Garrett chewing tobacco and access about that and we -- -- -- is that it's that's actually what that's how we're coming -- -- power play diet book that's going to be -- senate.
The last thing -- before we go.
In terms of turnout numbers when you think we should be predicting in Michigan and in Arizona are people going to be.
Are we gonna see it a continuation of the decline or do you think there's chance return.
I think -- probably see continuation of the declined to let's remember that the first two contests on very large turnout was a record turn out.
I don't lose our record turnout in New Hampshire and then the race got really nasty -- some candidates would argue it was nasty and Iowa but it really didn't get tough.
-- so we got into South Carolina and Florida.
And so while those negative ads have had -- have have had some impact.
In terms of the performance of the candidates are exaggerated that they've also had some impact with respect to turn -- and and I think that we'll probably see is a very negative a couple of weeks here and I think that probably depresses -- Yeah go gently we thank you very much -- -- with us when we come.