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Fox's Special Report with Brit Hume - Transcript

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HEADLINE: Wartime Grapevine
New Poll Shows Majority of Israelis Oppose Sharon's Military Tactic; Former President Clinton's Spokesman Says Clinton Will Not Rule Out A New York Mayoral Campaign In 2005

BYLINE: Tony Snow, Major Garrett, Steve Brown, Jonathan Serrie

JONATHAN SERRIE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford takes penny pinching to new heights, ordering his staff to conserve paper clips, recycle post-it notes and end the practice of idling state cars to keep them cool on hot days.

GOV. MARK SANFORD (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: I certainly would never do that with my own car. Therefore, I wouldn't expect people to do it for me because I think it's symptomatic of a larger problem in government. And that is people don't treat government money like their own money.

SERRIE: Taking office during a $500 million state budget shortfall, Sanford proposed shutting down the governor's mansion to save money. Business leaders persuaded him to keep it open because of its draw to investors. But the mansion now operates on roughly half its original budget, is largely supported by private donations and dignitaries are more likely to be invited for breakfast because it's cheaper than dinner.

SANFORD: I think that agencies out there, if they see that you begin with yourself, will take a message on reduction and greater efficiency one- way; verses if you're doing just the opposite.

SERRIE: Thrifty governors are nothing new. During the 1970s, then California Governor Jerry Brown gave up his bed in the governor's mansion for a futon in an apartment. And this year, Kansas Governor Catherine Sedalia has scrapped her office's gold embossed stationary for plain paper, saving two cents a page. But Governor Sanford's penny pinching cuts right down to the fabric he wears.

JENNY SANFORD, FIRST LADY, SOUTH CAROLINA: Well, he is known, for example, for wearing a frayed navy blue blazer. But I've given him on occasion new blue blazers and he returns them.

SERRIE: In step with her husband, First Lady Jenny Sanford, a former New York investment banker, attended the inaugural barbecue wearing clothes from Wal-Mart. South Carolina's no-frills governor is such a fan of the cost-cutting retail giant; his staff jokingly gave him a Walmart vest and nametag.

(on camera): The governor says he learned frugality from his father, who grew up during the Depression. It is a value Mark Sanford has taken on the state capital and to the mansion he reluctantly inhabits.

In Columbia, South Carolina, Jonathan Serrie, Fox News.

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