Candy was live from Columbia, South Carolina this week. On the morning after the South Carolina Republican primary, two presidential contenders joined us on today’s State of the Union. South Carolina victor Newt Gingrich defended his record as he looked ahead to the challenges he faces in Florida. Third-place finisher Rick Santorum explained why he thinks he is the only true conservative left in the race. Republican South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint gave his take on the fight over Mitt Romney’s tax records. Finally, Rep. James Clyburn, also of South Carolina discussed the tough re-election battle ahead for President Obama.
Watch Candy’s take on today’s show: http://bit.ly/xamTrS
State of the Union Highlights
Newt Gingrich, Republican Presidential Candidate, on his challenge in Florida
“I think my job in Florida is to convince people that I am the one candidate who can clearly defeat Obama in a series of debates and the one candidate who has big enough solutions that they would really get America back on track. We're a big country. We have big problems. And we need big solutions. And the people of Florida know that as well as anybody in the country.”
Newt Gingrich, Republican Presidential Candidate, on the issue of food stamps
I think it's unfortunate that liberal leaders, whatever their ethnic background, can't have an honest, open debate about policies that fail. The fact is, far more whites than blacks are on food stamps. The fact is I've been talking about food stamps both with regard to Speaker Pelosi and with regard to President Obama since August of 2010.
Rick Santorum, Republican Presidential Candidate, on Newt Gingrich’s conservative bona fides
"I would disagree with Newt that he’s the conservative standard bearer. Newt's the guy that's a very high risk candidate. Not only is he wrong on the individual mandate, in other words government-mandated health insurance, which he supported for 20 years, he's wrong on the Wall Street bailout. He was wrong on global warming. He was wrong on the immigration issue. These are probably the four biggest issues the Tea Party has, which is really the conservative base of the Republican Party now. And newt's just not in the right place on them."
Rep. James Clyburn, House Assistant Minority Leader, on Newt Gingrich
“Newt Gingrich is really throwing red meat to the base, saying little words and phrases that we are very familiar with here in the South, and identifying himself as the Congressman from Georgia. So all of that helped him…I would say it's appealing to the Tea Party element. When you say that Barack Obama is the best food stamp president we've ever had, that limits his presidency to an element of dependency.”
Sen. Jim DeMint, South Carolina Republican, on Mitt Romney’s delay in releasing his tax information
“I think what hurt him [Romney] is he wasn't definitive in his answer. He either said - should have said immediately I’ll do it in April or I'm not going to do it or I’m going to do it immediately. But the fact that he wasn't clear I think, is what hurt him. I frankly don't care about his tax returns. I think this stigmatizing success is a real mistake for Republicans. But he just needed to be definitive about what he was going to do.”
The Campaign Trail
This week: a singing President Obama
Links to today’s interviews
Newt Gingrich Part One
Newt Gingrich Part Two
Sen. Jim DeMint
Rep. James Clyburn