• With: Rick Santorum

    This is a rush transcript from "Your World," September 9, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

    NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Well, forget whether the president is only now coming up with an ISIS strategy.

    Rick Santorum is asking Rand Paul to just stick, well, to any strategy. He joins us right now.

    Senator, what do you mean by that?

    RICK SANTORUM, R-FORMER U.S. SENATOR: Well, I -- you know, look, there's been a debate within the Republican Party, led by Rand and Ron Paul, about transforming the Republican policy of -- on -- on foreign affairs to a more isolationist policy, to weaken our defenses, draw down our defense budgets, eliminate foreign aid, and not engage in trying to lead the world.

    And now that things have turned the other way and we're seeing the effects of what President Obama's policies, which are similar to that, have done, there's now an attempt to try to rewrite history what he was advocating before.

    And I think, look, if you're going to have an honest debate, stick with your guns and have the honest debate, but don't try to recreate what happened in the past in a way that is not consistent with the truth.

    CAVUTO: Well, his argument is that he is now saying that ISIS is an immediate threat, a direct threat of the United States, and that is a big differentiator. You say what?

    SANTORUM: Well, look, I mean, the -- the article I write -- wrote about is really three issues.

    One was -- is Israel and Hamas and the fact that he did in fact advocate for removing aid to Israel, proposed a budget that eliminated aid to Israel, and then went out and said that he never proposed such a thing. Secondly, you have the Iranian situation, where, again, we have a situation where this is a developing problem of Iran developing a nuclear weapon, has been now for 10 years.

    He has made comments that -- that we could live with a nuclear Iran. One bomb isn't a threat, I think, was the comment he made. He also was the only United States senator to vote against sanctions against Iran in trying to limit their ability to develop a nuclear weapon.

    And now that things have gotten a little dicier, he's -- he is trying to become away from that position. And then finally on ISIS again, similar to President Obama, didn't see them as a threat, didn't see that they were a serious problem.

    The -- the -- the un -- the misunderstanding that Ron -- that Rand Paul is that radical Islam in its many iterations, whether it's Iran or whether it's Hamas or whether it's ISIS or whether it's, you know, the Muslim Brotherhood, are all in the same boat. They are a -- a radical group that wants...

    CAVUTO: Well, what's your boat? What's your boat? Because they turn around and say, well, if Senator Santorum had his way, we would have been bombing the opposition a Syria year ago and we would embolden ISIS because that's who they are today. What do you say?

    SANTORUM: Well, as a matter of fact, I was against the red line and the president acting on the red line, but I will say that a year before that during the presidential campaign in 2012, I was actually advocating that we engage at that point, when we had a fairly idea who the rebel forces were, and the argument I made was we need to support the pro- democracy movement before other elements come in and take over and hijack it, which is exactly what happened.

    (CROSSTALK)

    CAVUTO: But how do you know, right, Senator? The argument is, how do you know?

    Now, I'm not sure that position is the wise one or the senator's evolving position. I will agree with you it has been inconsistent. Then what is the correct way for Republicans to respond? And if, for example, the president says tomorrow night, as he has indicated to, that he has got a strategy for dealing with this and he will seek them out in Iraq, potentially in Syria, would you be on board with supporting that?

    SANTORUM: Yes, I would be on supporting -- we need to confront ISIS. We need defeat ISIS. We need to do so in a very -- as a -- strong a fashion, using, as the colonel said before, our alliances with the Kurds -- and, of course, with the -- the Iraqi government.

    CAVUTO: Well, you know how this goes, Senator. It's always us. When push comes to shove, we're doing most of the pushing and most of the shoving. We don't like it, but that's how it ends up.

    Now, would you be comfortable with that? And would you worry that we get ourselves bogged down in something much more protracted?

    SANTORUM: I think it's really important, as I think we have seen in the past, that we do work with the -- with the -- with the natives, if you will, with the folks who have a stake in this. And I think the best place to start is with the Kurds.

    I mean, that's where the hot war is right now. And these are folks who have shown that they can govern themselves, they can live relatively independent of other elements in the Iraqi government, and can in fact wage a war effectively.

    CAVUTO: All right. OK.

    SANTORUM: So, no, I don't -- I don't think -- I don't think we need to be timid. I think we need to confront ISIS and defeat them. And the second final thing is, in Iran, these moves -- these talks are falling apart and we're doing nothing to -- to send a signal that a continued development of nuclear weapons, which is the most important -- even more important than ISIS...

    CAVUTO: All right, but it seems like your original attack line was really on -- on Senator Rand Paul.

    So I will just ask you bluntly, do you think he is a phony?

    (LAUGHTER)

    SANTORUM: I don't -- I -- you know, I don't like using those words.

    I mean, I just think he needs to -- if he wants to have a...

    (CROSSTALK)

    CAVUTO: Well, you say his position has evolved and he's talked out of both ends of his mouth and he's not been consistent. That's the classic definition of a phony.

    SANTORUM: He -- he -- he -- I just think if he wants to have a debate, you can't -- you can't be backpedaling on your -- as the world starts to implode because of the policies that you advocated.

    CAVUTO: All right, Senator, I look forward to that presidential debate when it comes.

    Rick Santorum, always good. Thank you, sir.

    SANTORUM: Thank you.

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