November 08, 2011

Job Almost Done for Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour

Guests: Gov. Haley Barbour, R-Miss.

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," November 8, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Well, Governor, I guess I can still call you governor for a while. How are you? Good to see you.

GOV. HALEY BARBOUR, R-MISS.: I'm fine, Sean. You can call me governor for a couple more months.

HANNITY: We'll call you governor for a couple years. You've earned the position. By the way, in fairness, you really did a good job there. You had some very tough times, a hurricane and natural disasters and a few -- few very difficult times for your state.

Let's first start with -- I'm going to put you in the reporter position being on the ground there. How is it looking for the lieutenant governor?

BARBOUR: It looks good right now. We've got a big turnout. Big turnouts help Republicans. We won the governor's race in Mississippi four of the last five elections.

The one we lost was because of a very small turnout. It's looks like a big turnout today, and if that's so, that will be good for Republicans. Start with Lieutenant Governor Phil Bryant could replace me as governor.

HANNITY: All right, what about the two controversial initiatives? One is 26, which would define life as beginning at the moment of, quote, "fertilization or cloning of the functional equivalent thereof." Where does that stand tonight?

BARBOUR: Well, there are a lot of pro-life people in Mississippi very concerned about the wording. Cloning is illegal in Mississippi. Why is it in there? What do they mean the functional equivalent thereof? Does that mean in-vitro fertilization?

I had real concerns about it. At the end of the day, I voted for it because believe life does begin at conception. But I'll tell you, there are a whole lot of very strongly pro-life people in Mississippi who voted against it today because of the ambiguity, the unforeseen consequences.

It's a reminder, Sean, some Colorado people put this on the ballot in Mississippi and we would have done much better to take it through the legislature. Our legislature would have taken this and smoothed out the wrinkles and get rid of the ambiguities. It would have paved us the Mississippi legislature overwhelmingly. Instead tonight there are a lot of pro-life people voting against it and it may lose.

HANNITY: Well, something that the legislature could still I'm sure pick up in the future.

This is interesting. We spend a lot of time on this program on eminent domain. You had Initiative 31. This is important and I hope other states follow in your footsteps. Because eminent domain has run amok and what you have are municipalities and counties that want more tax dollars. They're taking, we've chronicled, they take the homes in some cases of veterans that serve their country. People that have owned their property for 40 years, not to build a school, a hospital, a road, but because they want to build new buildings that bring in more tax revenue for the city or municipality.

So you guys have that initiative. I hope that that goes over well tonight.

BARBOUR: Well, the problem in Mississippi is the story you just told has been told by the proponents, mostly the Institute for Justice from Washington, D.C. The problem is that doesn't happen in Mississippi.

It has never happened in Mississippi, 99 plus percent of all the eminent domain cases in the history of Mississippi would still be allowed if this initiative passes.

We don't have the problem they had in Kilo, Connecticut, never have had because we have very strict protections of private property rights for job creation in our state today, so it's not going to solve the problem.

Even the Farm Bureau, the biggest proponents of this, said in their statement we don't have a problem now, but we could have a problem in the future. Never a problem in our state.

HANNITY: I hear you, and why do I always fear governments in the future? That's why when Congress says they're going to cut money and all the tax increases go in effect immediately, and then future congresses, which are not beholden to the tax cuts, it never happens.

I like the idea of being proactive and basically saying that listen, they're going to limit the ability of the state to take people's private property.

BARBOUR: Let me promise you that the Mississippi legislature and the U.S. Congress are very, very different. We have never had this issue in our state, but we have Toyota coming to Mississippi this month, 4,000 new jobs.

HANNITY: That's great.

BARBOUR: We could not have done that without eminent domain because of a bunch of mineral rights owned by people that nobody could find. We couldn't get a deed from them, but you're right. If this was being abused in Mississippi, we ought to stop it, but it's not. Never has been.

HANNITY: Governor, good to see you, and you might be breathing a sigh of relief. Your job is almost done. Congratulations. You may be on the short list for VP. Thanks for being with us.

BARBOUR: Well, I doubt it. But thanks, Sean, great to talk to you.

Content and Programming Copyright 2011 Fox News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2011 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.