Interviews

Huckabee: President Needs to Negotiate

Former Arkansas governor on inability to reach debt deal

 

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF,”YOUR WORLD”: Fed up and not putting up as lawmakers push for them to pony up.

Federal workers are worried that their paychecks and pensions will be cut once a debt deal is cut. Now they are fighting back with this new union ad. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, AD) NARRATOR: Who can we turn to?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To watch over our food supply.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To safeguard our bank deposits.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To protect our water and the air we breathe.

NARRATOR: Who can we turn to?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To monitor drugs for safety.

NARRATOR: To defend our borders.

Federal employees provide vital services to defend our national security, support our economy, and improve our health. Federal employees, they work for us.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: And of course Republicans are killing them.

To former Governor Mike Huckabee.

So, now Governor, we’re going to drink dirty water and we’re killing off federal employees.

MIKE HUCKABEE (R), FORMER ARKANSAS GOVERNOR: Well, they bought some radio as well -- this is a PSA for television -- about $200,000 in a couple of dozen markets, which tells me that when it’s that wide of a buy and this is essentially a YouTube video for a PSA, their real purpose is not...

CAVUTO: Boy, you know the lingo very well. You have only been doing this for a little over a year.

(CROSSTALK)

HUCKABEE: Bought a few ads in my life in a campaign or two.

But the fact is, when you buy that small of a buy, what you’re really doing is you are trying to get free media attention. In other words they’re trying to do exactly what we are talking about here today. We’re talking about it.

(CROSSTALK)

CAVUTO: So, we fell for it. We fell for it.

HUCKABEE: Well, not if we do what we’re about to do, which is to say, of course, federal workers do some important things. But so do private sector workers.

Everybody’s economy is on the line. And I don’t necessarily blame the federal workers, but it is a little self-serving to act like that they are the only ones would will be affected if Congress cannot get its act together.

CAVUTO: What they seem to be saying here is that any effort to stall this effectively kills us.

HUCKABEE: Well, of course it’s hyperbole. But that is what ads do. It is like if you don’t buy this product your teeth are going to fall out. If you don’t buy this particular car, chances are you will not get to your destination. The federal employees are making it almost sound like if there is any reductions in anything in the federal budget, then you will be drinking sewage, you will probably not be able to experience that lovely massage called a pat-down at the airport. There will be so many horrible things that will happen.

CAVUTO: I think you still will. I think you still will.

HUCKABEE: It will just take nine hours, yes.

(CROSSTALK)

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: And, boy, after hearing you, your next pat-down will be a humdinger.

HUCKABEE: Yes.

CAVUTO: We did try to reach out the union, got no response, by the way.

But these are the kind of fear games that you hear when you talk or get close to a government shutdown. Where do you think this whole thing goes?

HUCKABEE: It is such an unpredictable thing .

And I earlier when you had Bob Cusack from the Hill, I think if any anyone is a good observer of Capitol Hill goings-on...

(CROSSTALK)

CAVUTO: He doesn’t think we’re going to get a deal.

HUCKABEE: And when I listened to him, I thought, Bob is pretty attuned to what is going on and sort of the underlying dynamics.

And I think he may be right. But what we really have -- and I think this is unfortunate -- President Obama is, to be blunt, a poser. Just to be blunt, this is a cowboy riding a stick horse. He refuses to put something specific on the table and say, here is my plan. Here are the details.

You have got the House who you may not like their plan, but they have a land. And it is in the form of a bill, it has been voted on. The Senate just their smug way dismissed it, but they have put nothing in its place.

And that is what Americans need to focus on, is that the only body that has put something concrete on the table has been the House Republicans. And the president hasn’t done it. The Senate Democrats have not done it. And that’s the only plan that we have to work on.

So if Obama is serious about it, tell us what you do not like, be specific, and amend the House bill. Do not just reject it, walk away, and say I’m waiting for something else. That is not a negotiation. That is hostage-holding.

CAVUTO: Good stuff, all.

By the way, tomorrow on "Huckabee," well, look at this, la da dee da.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. See, now you’re just showing off.

HUCKABEE: He says hey, by the way.

CAVUTO: He says hey, by the way.

HUCKABEE: He says, tell Neil hey.

CAVUTO: All right, Governor, look forward that tomorrow night.

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