tv With All Due Respect Bloomberg October 8, 2015 8:00pm-8:31pm EDT
john: i'm john heilemann. mark: and i'm mark halperin. and "with all due respect" to john boehner, you ain't going anywhere anytime soon. ♪ it's a big newsday on the show. red-hot focus groups, but first red-hot house republicans. kevin mccarthy is donezo. he won't be majority speaker. here's what happened this afternoon. >> if we are going to unite and be strong, we need a new face to
help do that. nothing more than that. i feel good about the decision. i have been talking with members, thinking about this, trying to get there. i just think it is best to have a new face. this benghazi committee was only created for one purpose -- to find the truth on behalf of the families of the four dead americans. i should not be a distraction from that. mark: there's a lot to unpack here, why mccarthy left. he says it's because he did not think he could unify the house republicans. what are the reasons that this guy will not be speaker? why did he start the day thinking he was running, and then pull out? john: this is a rarity in politics. his colleagues were shocked when
he made this announcement. the explanation is that he gave seems to me is plausible, but carries a faint aroma of horse pucky. mark: a lot of members of congress and smart thinkers felt that he was not up to the job for the challenges ahead, keeping republicans united, raising the debt ceiling somehow, keeping the government from shutting down. he was in over his head. as i tweeted earlier today, the smartest thing he ever did was deciding he wasn't right to be speaker. john: the benghazi comment he made was not just a gaffe, but a gaffe of monumental proportions, showing that he is not ready to assume the role of the chief republican in the country. mark: i have seen probably 20 names of people floated as a speaker. paul ryan is the one that john boehner wants, the one that mccarthy wants. he does not want to do it.
he does not want to travel and the management associated with being speaker. the one name who could possibly do it is the congressman from oklahoma. all of these people underestimate what it's like to be speaker. john: i think there is a reasonable chance that the paul ryan will end up in this job, regardless of the fact that he doesn't want to do it. you are right that he doesn't want to do it. the pressure that he's going to get, the sense that there is a crisis in his party to sacrifice his own interest for the betterment of the party. john boehner and mccarthy are making these pleas to him -- bill bennett, his friends are coming to him. mark: here is the scenario where ryan takes it. if john boehner says to ryan, if i convinced the house congress to raise the debt ceiling, to
pass a budget through the election, take all of these huge problems off of your plate, and you just be speaker from the time i get those things done through the election and we figure out a way for you to spend time with your family -- it's possible ryan would do it. john: i think ryan cares a lot about policy and would try to change it. the speaker is more powerful a post than even the powerful chairman of the ways and means committee. if he really thought about it and cares about policy and the direction of the party, this is still a better place for him to do that work. mark: it's a lot of drudgery, you have to raise money and spend time at meetings. john: he is an intellectual, john boehner wasn't. mark: he would like for the good of his legacy to get these problems done. if john boehner says to ryan and conservatives, "you think ryan
is the one that can save you? you have got to keep these problems from stopping the speakership." john: if i were ryan, this caretaker speaker thing floated on other fronts -- i don't really see what the upside is for that job. you either accept it or desire it, you should want it for the long run. mark: frankly, why would the house conference want an outsider as a speaker? the constitution is clear you don't have to be a member of the house. but they don't want a short timer. why would they want someone like nancy pelosi? it's a fantasy. you hear democrats and liberals say this is a way to do it in a bipartisan way. no, the republicans want a conservative speaker. john: the case for newt gingrich remains strong. mark: the two things we discussed -- why did he leave and what happens next? there are no clear answers. there is a meeting tomorrow to
try and pass it forward between the house republicans. unless ryan does it, this thing could drag on for a while. john boehner has the worst case of job lock of anyone that i know. john: the consequences of continuing this -- the pressure on ryan will be great. the consequences of continuing this, not just for house republicans but for this presidential contest-- mark: and the debt ceiling. john: this is the thing that affects the entire party. mark: we will be talking more about this. coming up, what republican focus groups in iowa and new hampshire told us about the two outsider candidates. and what ben carson says about the focus groups. that is right after this. ♪
first we show you what they said about the two front runner republicans -- ben carson and donald trump, the outsider candidates. mark: let's talk about ben carson. what do you think his qualifications are to be president? >> common sense. >> clearly one of the most intelligent people in the race right now. >> he has everything i am looking for. i think he treats the american people and other candidates with respect. >> he is guided by a very strong faith. >> true to himself. >> deep, thoughtful. >> he seems genuine. mark: i will play one little clip. >> do you believe that islam is consistent with the constitution? dr. carson: no i do not. i would not advocate that we put a muslim in charge of this nation. i absolutely would not agree with that. mark: how many people agree with what ben carson said there? everybody. >> someone who is leading the country who is muslim in a
country that is a majority christian, in diplomacy, in foreign affairs, it would be hard to trust at this point. mark: do you disagree, agree? >> agree. >> one nation under god. mark: who else agrees? >> spot on. >> i just don't think i would support comments like that. just because religion doesn't have to do with issues. i don't think we should govern with religion either. mark: how many people can imagine ben carson as president of the united states? how many of you can imagine him becoming a nominee, but also president? raise your hand. >> it would restore some dignity to the white house. >> i think it would bring a lot of peace to the country. >> he would be going into meetings with things well thought out.
whatever cabinet he puts together would be some of the top minds as well. >> he doesn't have the experience, but that can be refreshing. >> he seems like he would be a soothing balm. >> i think he could create a much more peaceful world. john: people who can't imagine ben carson as the president, why not? >> he doesn't have a lot of political experience. when you look at people like rubio, who is quick with the answers, ben carson has to stop and think about it. it doesn't seem very presidential. >> i don't know if i want my president to learn a lot from a book as he is governing. >> his strength is that he is so thoughtful. but again, his weakness would be that he can't make those quick hard decisions fast enough. >> i think it would be very much like having mr. rogers in the white house. >> his message is everything i am looking for. i'm am just worried that washington will swallow him up.
mark: what do you think of the source of donald trump's political idealism? >> the wwf, maybe? >> it might be of mike tyson in his heyday. >> the nationalism that he is tapping into. it excludes others. >> i'm a teacher. if anyone in my classroom would say, "go back to mexico" to a latino or hispanic student, they would be in so much trouble. but trump can get away with it and people think he is tough. >> he is bombastic, but that is his style. it served him well to date. john: in a 3-4 words, what you think about donald trump? >> aggressive, nonsensical, over-the-top. >> not a strong christian. >> straightforward, intelligent, conniving. >> intelligent, businessman, open-minded. >> politically incorrect. >> i would have to agree with
you -- politically incorrect. >> mouth shooting volcano. >> confident, arrogant, winner. john: why do you think trump is so brutally critical of other candidates in the race? >> i don't think i appreciate it when he puts others on the defense. i think it makes him look, you know, bad. >> to me it is kind of a vetting process. if you are going to lead an entire country, you should be able to withstand attacks from another candidate. if you watch this debate, you will remember this moment. >> ms. fiorina, in an interview in rolling stone magazine, donald trump says, "look at that face, would anyone vote for that?" mr. trump later said he was
talking about your persona, not your appearance. >> i think women all over this country heard very clearly what mr. trump said. [applause] mr. trump: i think she has a beautiful face and is a beautiful woman. mark: what did you think of that exchange? >> i think she played it to her political gain. >> i think she responded beautifully. as a woman, and i have three daughters, i could never vote for donald trump. mark: because of that? >> not just because of that. i just feel like he is a ticking time bomb. >> he looked like he had his hands slapped and was embarrassed, trying to totally change it into something it wasn't. he looks like he had been caught with his hand in the cookie jar. he looks stupid. mark: if it came down to a two person choice between ben carson and donald trump, who would you pick between the two? >> trump. >> carson. >> trump. >> carson. >> carson. >> carson.
>> trump. >> trump. >> trump. >> trump. >> carson. mark: carson or trump? >> carson. >> carson. >> carson. >> carson. >> trump. >> i agree, trump. >> carson. >> carson as well. john: that was pretty interesting. a lot of enthusiasm for ben carson. still plenty of enthusiasm for trump, but less. what is the takeaway between the difference of iowa and new hampshire? mark: definitely more enthusiasm for carson in iowa, but a surprising amount of enthusiasm in new hampshire as well. you think he'd be a struggle -- a stronger candidate because of his faith. he is drawing bigger crowds there. at some point, could you imagine those two tangling? they tangled a little a few weeks ago. they are in their respective corners.
but it will be fascinating if they have a showdown in the next debate. john: in my iowa group, one of the things, one of the clear differences -- we know this is different between iowa and new hampshire -- evangelicals and a much more bigger voting block. people talk about how ben carson is godly. what i thought would be a problem for trump in iowa, is that they doubt that he is really sincere about his religion. mark: i was really surprised the number of people -- when asked for a short list of who can win, carson was almost on every list. john: they had reservations. they really like his personality though. will they think he is actually qualified, foreign policy, domestic policy, all of that stuff. watching these focus groups, i wonder what ben carson himself would think about the things people have said about him. we will find out when we come back when we ask ben carson. ♪
♪ mark: we are joined by a real-life presidential candidate, and the author of the new book "a more perfect union", his ninth book. dr. carson, thanks for coming on the program. i want to ask about news of the day. speaker of the house. is your party's search for a new speaker a crisis or not? dr. carson: no, it's not a crisis at all. i think it's a very positive thing. i think it's positive that representative mccarthy, in a very unselfish move said, "i want to do what is best for the party and open the process up." i am hopeful that many people will have a chance to speak out
about their leadership style. we can have a vote that will bring people together. mark: there are two schools of thought. i don't think you want to name your favorite candidate. one is someone associated with speaker boehner, and someone who is a newer figure, someone newer to congress. what would be a smarter thing? dr. carson: they should both explain their vision and let the members vote. mark: in thinking about the traits you would like to see in a new speaker, what are those? dr. carson: i would like to see courage. i have been, like many americans, somewhat disappointed by the fact that congress has largely taken an observatory role. the executive branch and judicial branch have been more active. we need to have a balance of power, checks and balances here. that does not happen. when one branch backs off, the others necessarily become more vigorous.
john: you give mccarthy credit in some ways for the decision that he made. do you fully believe the expiration that he offered, or is there something else going on? dr. carson: whatever the explanation is, i think it was the right thing. john: you were able to take a look at the focus groups that we did in iowa and new hampshire, mark and i, which i would say unequivocally you were the big winner of. how odd is it, listening to people talk about the things i like about you, how does that feel to you? the personal terms that they use -- how does that feel as you sit here as a human being? dr. carson: i am gratified to know that people appreciate the manner in which i have tried to conduct my life. i don't have a lot of skeletons for people to find. i tried to be honest. i am not a politician. my finger is not up in the air
all the time trying to figure out what people want to hear. john: as we talk to people about these things, these are all undecided voters. they not decided yet to vote for you. but the reservations they have about you, maybe you lack energy, you lack experience, especially on the international stage. they think that you don't have enough specific policies. how do you hope to close the deal with people who are personally predisposed to like you, but still have reservations? dr. carson: i think that is why it is a marathon and not a sprint. over the course of time they will see that i am pretty energetic, i just don't yell and scream. anybody that can stand at an operating table for 8, 10, 12 hours and keep your concentration is going to be fairly energetic. as far as foreign policy is concerned, i am hopeful that some of these debates they will actually asked me about some foreign policy. and not just asked me race questions or something that they think i might know.
mark: your book is called "a more perfect union." it's a book about the constitution, a lot of books written about the constitution. what is your perspective that you are bringing to these issues as a doctor and now a politician? dr. carson: also as a citizen. the constitution it was basically written at an eighth grade level. people say, you are not a constitutional scholar, you can't talk about it. the constitution was written so that we, the people, could understand it. the purpose is not only to
define what our liberties are, but to contain the government. there is a natural tendency for government to grow and encroach upon people's freedoms. if they don't understand how the system is set up, it makes it that much easier for that natural tendency to be realized. mark: it has been a while since we have amended the constitution. people think because the gridlock and nature of our politics, it won't happen anytime soon. if you could, by yourself, put into effect two amendments, what would they be? dr. carson: one would be term limits on congressmen, senators. the other one would be term limits on the judicial branch. mark: what length would you like to see for the judiciary? dr. carson: when we put the constitution into place, the average lifespan was 47. now it is like 80. i don't necessarily think we need to have people who are well advanced in age when we have so many capable people below. i would be very happy to engage in a discussion about what that age should be. mark: give me a range, based on how old you are, or the length of time that you can serve? dr. carson: i think a combination of both maybe. john: when we shared our focus group, one thing we talk about
is you not being in favor of having a muslim as president. many people objected on constitutional grounds, that it explicitly says there should be no religious tests. how do you reconcile that you of view of being a constitutionalist with that question? dr. carson: the constitution says we also have freedom of speech and expression. i said that i would not advocate for such. i did not say that i would preclude such from happening. that is perfectly consistent with the constitution. also i made it very clear before, during that same interview, that anybody from any background, religious or otherwise, who was willing to accept american values and principles and who is willing to put the constitution above their personal belief would be acceptable. that should have been the end of it, but it was pressed further, indicating that perhaps maybe someone in the muslim faith would not fit into that category. and if they didn't, the reason
they wouldn't fit into that category obviously would be their embracing of sharia, which is incompatible with the constitution. mark: the book is called "a more perfect union." written by you and your wife candy. how did you split up the work? dr. carson: i did most of the writing and she did most of the research. mark: congratulations on your book. we will be right back after this. ♪
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