This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," September 13, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And tonight, we are monitoring breaking developments out of New York as the polls have now closed. And we are waiting a winner to be declared in the race between Republican Bob Turner and Democrat David Weprin. Now, this the seat vacated by former Congressman Anthony Weiner.
And as we await the results, well, let me bring the man who helped bring down the house in last night's Republican GOP presidential debate, that's former Speaker of the House presidential candidate, Newt Gingrich. Sir, are you how?
FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER NEWT GINGRICH: I'm great, it's good to be with you. And I'm talking to you from the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, which is a great, great place.
HANNITY: Well, this is nice because the last time I went through to you, I got nothing but a black screen. We're glad we actually were able to pull you up.
GINGRICH: I know.
HANNITY: First of all, you know, the White House is already trying to spin this. You know, a district that Obama -- if in fact Bob Turner -- and I think the odds are still against him even though he's up in the polls -- if the Republican pulls out Anthony Weiner's seat, how big a referendum would that be on Obama?
GINGRICH: Well, I think it would be comparable to Scott Brown winning in Massachusetts. I think this is -- first of all, just the embarrassment of losing Chuck Schumer's seat. Second, the fact that it is a New York seat that you would have thought formerly was literally impossible to lose. But, it is a long way.
The key question for the president is, is he willing to learn anything about what is going on in the economy or is he just determined to stick with class warfare and bureaucratic socialism in a style that is really aggressively unwilling to negotiate?
You know, when you wonder and you say, pass exactly what I send you when it is obvious to anybody, I mean, there's not a Democrat on Capitol Hill who believes the Republican House is going to pass what Obama sent up without any kind of change. And I can't figure out -- what is he trying to accomplish? And what does he think, you know, all of this parading around, pretending is going to do for him? And so, I just see this particular vote in this election is one more step towards what I think could become a true disaster for the Democrats by next November.
HANNITY: The last three debates, I've noticed a trend. You seem to be taking on the role that wait a minute, we are united up here. We all agree Obamacare should be repealed. We all agree as a party that the economy is in the wrong direction, that we're cumulating too much of debt. We all agree on a stronger national defense. And I notice you are not too happy with the media trying to get the candidates to fight amongst one another. And you seem to be sort of, you know, conciliatory, bringing everybody together. Is that by design?
GINGRICH: Yes, I was very struck with a terrific book on Lincoln called "Team of Rivals," which made the point that Lincoln understood in order to truly change the country, he had to bring together all of the people who had been competing for power in 1860 in the Republican Party. I think we are in a similar place. I think to truly change Washington as much as we need to, we are going to need everybody. We are going to need each other in their own unique way. We are going to need them doing something they are very good at. That's true of voters. I always tell people, I'm not asking you to be for me, I'm asking you to be with me. Because if you're for me, you are going to vote yes, and go home and say, I sure hope he fixes it. That is not going to work this time.
So, I feel the same way to everybody in that -- first of all, I like the people who we are competing with just as I frankly earlier, I liked very much Tim Pawlenty who I have known for years. And I have known most of these folks for a long time. They are good people. Every single one of them frankly would be a better president than President Obama is. And so, I'm very content to say, let's talk about our differences and we are going to have some. Let's do it in a way that is positive. Let's remember that in the end, we all want to be on the same team. And frankly, I don't mind the news media asking tough questions, they should ask tough questions. But I don't particularly like when they try to play games and pit us against each other in a way that's I think a little bit childish. All of our campaigns will figure out ways to critique each other.
HANNITY: Yes. Well, I don't think they asked very many tough questions of Barack Obama. And there were plenty of unanswered questions I thought getting into that 2008 election, not that I want to bring that up again.
All right. I was talking to you the other day, and we've been following the Fast and Furious scandal. I don't think the president is going to change on the economy. He just doubled down on the failed policies that he had. They're not going to go anywhere. So, I guess what is interesting is there's another side of the Obama story that doesn't get talked. And that's the bureaucracy, that's the regulation. There are issues involving corruption, competence, Fast and Furious. You got very angered over the Gibson Guitar issue and 24 agents raiding Gibson Guitar over the issue of whether or not they were using the wrong kind of wood and whether it was imported properly.
GINGRICH: You know, this is a good case study in just how totally out of touch with reality Obama's appointees are. Gibson Guitar is a very old company back to the 1890s. Two years ago, they were raided by the U.S. government which seized six guitars. Think about this, if you were making a movie. Federal agents arrive, they swoop in, they seize six guitars which are made out of Madagascar wood, which the government of Madagascar says is fine. But the Obama Justice Department says, it is not fine. Just a couple of weeks ago, 26 armed federal agents entered all of Gibson's properties in Tennessee, closed them down, sent the workers home over Indian wood.
Now, this is a fascinating case. Not that the Indian wood is endangered, but the Justice Department says under Indian law, the Indian wood has to be manufactured in India, even though the Indian government does not agree.
Therefore, if they actually brought into the U.S. to be manufactured by American workers creating American jobs, that is illegal. Not only is illegal, they sent in armed agents. Now, think about this, in the real world, outside of Obama fantasyland, if you had 26 spare federal agents, you could use them to control the border, you could use them to go after terrorists, you could use them to go after cocaine dealers. Or you could use them to go after Indian wood.
Now, only in the Obama administration would you check D in order to get a job. I'm hoping that the Congress will investigate this. Get all the decision documents out in the open and force the firing of every single person involved in the decision-chain. Because it is fundamentally against the American tradition to have this kind of thing going on in America.
HANNITY: It's unbelievable.
GINGRICH: This is crazy.
HANNITY: I had the CEO of Gibson on last night. They actually followed the law. They even showed them the documents and it still didn't stop them from, you know, coming in with 26 armed agents. It is unbelievable.
GINGRICH: Well, that's what is crazy. Because they're actually, in both countries went to the American embassy, got the American embassy to sign off on it. They've followed every single procedure. They are a company which has participated in saving the rain forest. They are environmentally sensitive. And I don't know if it is because the CEO gave money to Obama -- I mean, to the Republicans or what the deal is. But it is something worth really investigating.
HANNITY: All right. Mr. Speaker, thanks for being with us. I appreciate your time. And we'll see you next week at the debate in Orlando.
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