• With: Ken Langone, Home Depot co-founder

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

    NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF "YOUR WORLD": All right, the scene right now in Scottsdale, Arizona, an empty podium, but pretty soon Herman Cain is going to come up to that podium and try to deal with the all of these allegations that have popped up as to whether he harassed women when he was head of the National Restaurant Association.

    I guess it’s Phoenix, Arizona, Pam? I misstated -- Phoenix, not Scottsdale. But, again, he should be coming there in about a half-an-hour.

    Meanwhile, Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone is watching this closely, because this is part of the back and forth in the Republican race. Mr. Langone of course the co-founder of Home Depot and a backer of Mitt Romney, right?


    CAVUTO: What do you think of these Cain charges?

    LANGONE: Well, I think, without regard to the merit of the charges, I think it has been handled terribly.

    I think whoever advised him to stonewall was dumb. When you run for president, everything is on the table. That’s part of the deal that you accept when you decide you’re going to jump into the fray. So my first thought would be for him to think he could simply say, I’m not going to talk about it, and it would go away, only heightens the curiosity of people.

    CAVUTO: Is it too late for what he’s going to do in a half-an-hour?

    LANGONE: You know, I can only think back to the Bill Clinton era. Anything is possible in America.

    CAVUTO: Yes.

    LANGONE: Right?

    CAVUTO: Yes.

    LANGONE: And you would have thought that when Bill Clinton had to go on television and admit that he had lied, "I did not have sex with that woman," what is "is," and -- but look at him. He came back and he is a very popular guy in retirement.

    CAVUTO: So far, Herman Cain’s poll numbers look stable. What do you make of that?

    LANGONE: I think is a lot of uncertainty in the Republican field. I think, for example, the fact that Perry jumps in, he goes to the head of the class, Cain jumps in and he goes to the head of the class -- I am supporting Mitt Romney.

    CAVUTO: Why? You really wanted Chris Christie of New Jersey to run.

    LANGONE: You can’t have what you can’t get.

    CAVUTO: Did you work him over hard, please, run, run, run? The talk was that you made a full-court press.

    LANGONE: You call the governor and ask him just how hard I pressed him. I did everything but sit on his chest, OK?

    CAVUTO: And he just told you, get off my chest?

    LANGONE: No. He just said that he felt like he had an obligation to Jersey and he felt that what he had accomplished so far was fragile and it will take the full four years. And in the spirit of candor, I said, you know, Governor there is no certainty you are going to be reelected in ‘13.

    CAVUTO: What did he say?

    LANGONE: "I understand that," he said, "but I still have to make this decision."

    And I said the reason we wanted you is exactly for the way you are acting right now. That was your attraction to us. Honest. Direct. You know where he is. You know where he stands.

    CAVUTO: But then you had to revert to another -- then you went back to Romney. Did Romney like a second fiddle?


    LANGONE: No. John Whitehead brought Governor Romney in to see me.

    CAVUTO: John Whitehead, the former Goldman Sachs...


    LANGONE: Right. We had a nice visit and I was very forthright. Christie had not decided yet.

    And I said, Governor, I want to be honest. I am doing everything I can to persuade Governor Christie to jump into the race. And if he does, I will support him. On the other hand, if he doesn’t, I want you to know I will do everything I can to help you get elected.

    And that is where we are.

    CAVUTO: What did he say?

    LANGONE: He appreciated that. He thanked me.

    CAVUTO: Really?

    LANGONE: He said, I appreciate that.

    CAVUTO: Did he say that you would be a treasury secretary?

    LANGONE: I’m -- I’m -- you know the great thing about -- I am 76 years old. I am too old.