Huckabee: People Just Want Work

Former Arkansas governor on NLRB, Boeing union fight


NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF “YOUR WORLD”: So, does this fight have some Democrats running scared? Some Democratic right-to-work states are facing tough reelections themselves. They’re said to be distancing themselves from this fight, some of those fellows you just see right there.

Former GOP presidential candidate and big-time TV host Mike Huckabee here not surprised.

Governor, it is a sticky wicket for some of these guys, right?

MIKE HUCKABEE (R), FORMER ARKANSAS GOVERNOR: It shouldn’t be. This ought to be about jobs.

And the fact is, if Boeing doesn’t move those jobs to the place where they can most cost-effectively do business, then I’ll tell you, the companies that are buying the jets will buy Airbus jets made in Europe instead, because this is a competitive marketplace.

And you want to ask some of these folks who are pushing this got to move them all to Washington, who didn’t lose jobs over this, what’s wrong with creating 2,000 jobs? Do the people who got those jobs in South Carolina, are they better off than they were when they were unemployed? Aren’t their wages far better than most of the wages in the other industries surrounding that Boeing plant?

You bet they are. So, shouldn’t they celebrate the fact that some Americans are getting a paycheck and going home and putting food on their table? Instead, they’re complaining that they’re not union jobs.

An unemployed person doesn’t care if it’s a union or a non-union job.

CAVUTO: Just give me a job.

HUCKABEE: They want to go to work.

CAVUTO: But there is a vested financial interest here. As we go through some of these folks who might or might not be vulnerable and the union money they get, the fact of the matter is, they are beholden to the unions. That’s just a reality.

HUCKABEE: There is a vicious cycle and circle, if you will, in politics, where the money follows the candidate and the candidate follows the money, and it continues to go that way.

There are a lot of people -- Mary Landrieu down in Louisiana had a lot of money from unions over the past several years in her tenure as a United States senator. She’s being awfully quiet about all this, but she -- she has to be politically.

But isn’t it time that we say to folks, if you’re this beholden to a union, go out there and get you a union job, but the congressional seats and Senate seats ought not to be owned by a union. They ought to be owned by the people and what’s in their best interest.

And it is in their best interest to get jobs in America, not in Europe, not in Mexico, and, for heaven sakes, not in China.

CAVUTO: You know what I thought of, too, Governor? Imagine if this case doesn’t go ultimately Boeing’s way. I know there are a lot of fights back and forth, Seattle courthouse, and that could be appealed to a federal court, which goes potentially goes all the way to the Supreme Court.

But if it’s ruled that Boeing overstepped itself, 1,000 people lose their jobs.

HUCKABEE: Well, and not only do they lose their jobs, but what will that do to the future of businesses in this country expanding? They’re simply not going to be wanting to risk not just the loss of a billion dollars construction of a plant, but those jobs that they created, but the litigation costs and the loss of time that they’re going be tied up in court.

CAVUTO: Absolutely.

HUCKABEE: So, here’s what we are going to do. We are going to drive more jobs out of this country, and fewer Americans will have a job to go to. That is the nuttiest thing.

CAVUTO: Well, it’s a -- you know, on this show, I know I have had a number of CEOs on. I know you get some big-time guests, but I get Fortune 500 guests.

HUCKABEE: Yes, you do.

CAVUTO: Kind of a big deal, as you know, Governor.

(LAUGHTER) CAVUTO: But in all seriousness, one of them told me, what’s to stop us from saying, we see the grief that Boeing’s going through; agree or disagree, it’s not worth the headache; we’ll just go to China, we’ll go to Latin America, we’ll go anywhere else, but deal with the grief we would have to deal with here?

HUCKABEE: Capital is like water. It always flows to the course of least resistance.

And so if capital is going to hit a wall of resistance from the unions, it will simply flow in a different direction, away from the unions. If it hits government regulatory impediments, it’ll flow away from that and to go where there is not those government regulatory impediments.

This is why this is a -- in essence an employment mission of suicide for the government to so intervene to start picking the locations for an American business.

Neil, in a bigger sense, to me, this defies the very essence of free market free enterprise that our economy has been built on, but that we are almost systematically destroying by idiotic actions as being practiced by the National Labor Relations Board.

CAVUTO: Well, finally, do you get a sense, Governor that Democrats are kind of teasing Republicans on this? Come on. Go ahead. Go bash these union guys. Go bash what unions represent and are trying to do, and we’ll win that battle.

HUCKABEE: Well, they won’t win that battle, because unions have decided to put virtually 100 percent of their support in Democrats.

So, Republicans, politically, have nothing to lose by beating up on unions. If unions had been smart, they would have salted both sides of the political aisle. They might have given 75 percent to Democrats, but they would have given just enough to Republicans to keep them from going completely against them.

Now they have -- the Republicans owe unions nothing, but a beating about the head and that’s what they are going to get. There is no political consequence to the Republicans beating up on the unions, zero.

And here’s the other side of that. There is no political advantage for a Democrat sucking up to the union, because the unions have nowhere else to go. This is a dumb political move on the part of the union, and it has been for a generation.

CAVUTO: Real quick, any regrets about not joining this race?

HUCKABEE: The only regret is that you refused to be my running mate.

(LAUGHTER) HUCKABEE: And, therefore, I said the heck with this whole process.

CAVUTO: No, you thought about it and said I’m staying out. I’m staying out.


CAVUTO: But, no, everyone is diving in, it seems.

HUCKABEE: Well, it’s still a wide-open race. I think there’s a -- hopefully an opportunity to change the leadership in this country.

CAVUTO: Do have any horse that you like?

HUCKABEE: I like most -- well, I’ll put it this way. I like all of them. And I think any one of the people right now on the Republican stage -- I will say it this way -- every day of the week and twice on Sunday would do a better job than this president of getting jobs and the economy back on track.

CAVUTO: All right, I know they’re seeking out your advice. You’re just being very quiet about it.

HUCKABEE: Well, they are asking me what they think -- or what I think they ought to do, and they’re doing the exact opposite...


HUCKABEE: ... because they feel that must be the right way to go.

(LAUGHTER) CAVUTO: They envy you. They envy you, the gov and his hit show Saturday and Sunday nights, "Huckabee" -- an all-around very, very astute guy.

Content and Programming Copyright 2011 Fox News Network, Inc. Copyright CQ-2011 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.