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CBS "Face the Nation" - Transcript


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GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON (D-New Mexico): Well, it's important that liberals, conservatives, moderates and the Democratic Party basically stop complaining and realize that we have a month to go. We've had some gains in the last months since Labor Day. But this is when voters are paying attention. And the first step we need to take, is energize the Democratic
base. And there's nobody better than the President and the vice president to go after that base of young people, of minorities, of independents that got the President elected. He's the best person to do that. But all Democrats, if there's one message that I want to send is that we should stop firing at each other. We've got enough people, the Republicans, firing at us already. So we not-- we don't need these divisions in the party. But what I would do, Bob, is stop talking about bills in Congress, financial overhaul, health care reform, bailouts, start talking about creating jobs and housing and-- and-- and making the American people recognize that we need
to make investments in sagging industries and renewable energy and manufacturing. Jobs, work force development, connect with voters emotionally.

BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): Well--

GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: But more than anything, Bob, we-- we have got to come together and realize that we can't go back to those Republican policies of a horrendous economy and huge deficits.

BOB SCHIEFFER: Well, let me just ask you this. What is it do you think that the President did wrong here?

GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: Well, I-- I believe that he has tackled the major issues. He has tackled the fact that we were heading into a depression and he avoided it. He's restored our standing internationally. I know that's not a big campaign theme but he's done that.


GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: Wall Street-- the stock market is-- is coming back. There's still twenty million unemployed and underemployed, there's still foreclosures. There's no question that we've got problems. There-- but I saw the President in Albuquerque. He was here in some of these backyard chats, and the vice president. They're doing everything they can to energize the base. But I think we've got to stop talking about the Beltway and all the races in Washington. Yes, it's important, the Senate and the House. But, you know, they should listen more to governors, the Democratic Party. We're the ones creating jobs, renewable energy, movies in my state. Ed Rendell in-- in Pennsylvania has created a lot of jobs. Look at success stories in the states, in the grassroots with mayors, with county commissioners.


GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: It's not just the Washington, DC, party.


GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: Well, I also think we should take on the Tea Party. For some reason, everyone is scared of them. What they really want to do to this country is when they talk about reducing deficits is, they're cutting in to Medicare, Medicaid, firefighters, teachers, nurses, people's benefits, Social Security. I think it's important that we not be defensive that we be strong. But we have to unify and stop the internal carping. It's important that we recognize that we not only have to attract our liberal progressive base but also the Democratic Party is moderates, it's conservatives, it's western Democrats, it's southern Democrats. It's important
that we not be so concentric, so Washington based. And here I do think the President's efforts at going into backyards, at rallying the base and the vice president very strongly are being very effective, but the rest of the party seems to be doing their own thing. I think it's important that we
talk and make those populist themes about--

BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): What--

GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: --creating jobs, about foreclosures. Not talk about all these Washington bills and initiatives that are happening.

BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): Would--

GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: The people want to be connected emotionally.

BOB SCHIEFFER: Would-- would Democrats have been better off had-- had the vice president not told the-- the left to stop whining? It seems to have had kind of-- it hasn't seemed to go down very well on the left.

GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: Well, no. I think that's exactly what needed to happen. Sure, maybe it wasn't popular within the left. But it's important that we come together, that we not stay home. That we talk about the importance of not going back to the years of Republicans that brought us this recession. That brought us this unemployment. But it's not enough to say, okay, American people, give us credit because we, Democrats, prevented it from getting any worse.

BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): Let me ask--

GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON: You've got to be positive. You've got-- you've got to talk about jobs and you've got to talk about the economy. And you've got to connect with people emotionally.


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