Foster Friess shifts his support to Romney

Former Santorum backer on his new choice in 2012


This is a rush transcript from "Your World," April 11, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF "YOUR WORLD": Wait a minute. Is the Mormon grabbing a cold one?

Fox on top of the certain millionaire warming to Mitt.

Welcome, everyone. I am Neil Cavuto.

And lickety-split, Foster Friess is now with Mitt, the legendary investor who pumped nearly $2 million into the Santorum campaign now showing the love for the governor. Friess says he will do all he can now to make Romney the next president of the United States.

Don't let this guy's warm and friendly grandpa charm fool you. Friess' impeccable timing and dough helped make Rick Santorum a winner, not only in Iowa, but launched one of the more improbable presidential campaigns in American history.

And now ready to do the same for one Mitt Romney? Hard to say. This much is not. Foster Friess could have done an interview with anyone anywhere. He chose to make his first TV appearance since the Rick Santorum news here, with us, right now, because, unlike Foster Friess, I am not so modest.


CAVUTO: Foster, good to have you. Thanks for coming.

FOSTER FRIESS, FOUNDER, FRIESS ASSOCIATES: It's always a delight to be with you, Neil. Thank you for inviting me.

CAVUTO: You said a couple of days back when last we chatted that look, you were loyal to the party. In the end, if it looked like Mitt Romney was going to be it, he would be your guy, and now he is since Rick Santorum stepped out. And do you any do this grudgingly?

FRIESS: Well, I'm just excited about what Rick Santorum accomplished. As you mentioned, it is historic how he in 90 days became very close to grabbing the nomination. And what he has accomplished is ignite a whole group people who love this country that maybe have not been involved before, and actually are going to be very critical to help Mitt Romney win.

If we don't harness the energy that Rick Santorum has created, it will be a lot harder for Mitt to do what he needs to do in November. We are cheering for him and we’re grateful for what Rick has contributed to our cause. And it is just beginning. Rick will continue to fight for the values that are so important to our country and get us back to the liberty that so many people fought and died for.

CAVUTO: How will he do that let’s say if he is not the running mate?

FRIESS: Well, I think there’s a lot of ways in which he can do that.

And right now I think he just wants to rest for a while and recuperate. When you have a child in danger, it takes a little stuffing out of you. I think he will be glad to kind of stay home for a while. But I am pretty convinced he will be participating and maybe help some of the Senate races and I know he will be helping the ticket and he is committed, he is committed to our country.

This race wasn't so much about Rick Santorum as it was about the mission he felt he was on to get our country back where our founding fathers intended it to be. He will be contributor and he’s probably one of the most popular politicians in the country even among Democrats, because I was just talking to someone who is a journalist and said she disagreed with a lot his positions, but, boy, does she respect him because he says what he believes and that is really worth something.

CAVUTO: First off, stop talking to other journalists.


CAVUTO: Secondly, I didn't hear the senator mention Mitt Romney's name once in his stepping-out speech yesterday. Now, that could be just, you know, it’s his decision and no one else's, but a lot of people quickly read into that there is still some bad blood there or he doesn't like Mitt Romney.

What do you say?


Well, I think what is important is what will happen for our country. Rick loves this country and he will do whatever it takes to replace President Obama. That is the biggest threat we have. And if President Obama wins again, we are talking a single-party rule for 30 or 40 years.We're talking about a couple of Supreme Court justices.

And his secretary of energy, Steven Chu, said we want to have gasoline prices up to European prices and that is what, $8.50 or something like that. So there are a lot of things that are at risk if Rick doesn't participate. And I am pretty confident he is going to be participating and be a help to maybe some of the Senate races. He just loves this country. That is why he got in the race.

CAVUTO: You do not see him -- or for that matter Mitt Romney choosing him as his running mate?

FRIESS: Mitt Romney I think is wise to kind of keep a lot of options open. There is an unbelievable number of brilliant people out there. There’s Paul Ryan, Ron Johnson.


CAVUTO: Do you have a choice, do you have a favorite, Foster?

FRIESS: Well, I am available.


CAVUTO: All right. Let's say he passes over you, though. What about -- what about Santorum, what about any of these other names? You mentioned Ryan. Other names that have popped up, Chris Christie, Marco Rubio. Any of those jazz you?

FRIESS: They really excite me.

I love the chutzpah of Christie. And Rubio is very polished. And he loves this country too. If you look at the candidates that are out there and actually look at the governors ranks -- I have been involved with the Republican Governors Association and those people that run the states they are incredibly brilliant people.

And I think there are some candidates there that should be on the list for sure.

CAVUTO: Did it finish with any bad blood between Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney? Or is this just the nature of the beast, the way campaigns go, you need to let bygones be bygones and move on, that this wasn’t particularly vituperative? How would you describe it?

FRIESS: I think we are in a Christian nation.

Harry Truman read the Bible five times before he became president and said it is a Christian nation. And in our country he said has been proven the fundamental unity between Christianity and democracy. And part of the Christian world view is that life should have a great big 270-degree windshield and we would rip off the rear-view mirrors.

And so we have to look ahead as to what is best for our country and how we will move forward and forgiveness is a big part of our Christian culture and I think that’s a part of Rick Santorum's life as well.

So there were mean things said back and forth, I'm sure. And as you say, it is part of the political process. It's kind of nasty, unfortunately. But I think we have to move forward and we have to think about our country. And at least from my standpoint, I bear no grudges against anyone.

And I am willing to help in whatever I can. And Rick has sort of passed the baton to us. He will back off a little bit, I am sure. He will work hard, but not as much as he has.

CAVUTO: Gotcha.

FRIESS: But now it's up to all of us who are supporters that we have to carry the ball and make sure his voice gets carried on into the elections.

CAVUTO: By the way, you should bear grudges. You could have gotten a lot further along with your career had you done that.


CAVUTO: Let me ask you, have you talked to Governor Romney yourself?

FRIESS: No. I talked to Tim Pawlenty.


FRIESS: And Newt Gingrich gave me a call.


CAVUTO: What did Newt said?

FRIESS: Well, he was just very gracious in congratulating me on the role that I played, which I think is way overemphasized.

CAVUTO: He didn't ask for your financial support? Maybe you and Adelson could help each other out or...


FRIESS: He was just basically congratulating Rick and me for -- and I must say I have gotten way too much credit. There's Bob Vander Plaats and a number of pastors.


CAVUTO: But I found it interesting because Newt Gingrich would seem to be in keeping with your relatively conservative point of view, yet you passed over him to go to I guess what you Mitt Romney as the inevitable nominee, right?

FRIESS: Yes. I had a half-hour one on one with Mitt when he came to Jackson for a fund-raiser and this is a decent, decent man.


FRIESS: I think he has had reversals in his positions, but now it will be very hard for him not to stick with the positions. He made a pledge to repeal ObamaCare. If he goes back on that, he has to realize that the American people are counting on him, now, to do what he says. I think he will.

CAVUTO: All right, Foster Friess, it’s always a pleasure. Thank you very, very much.

Remember what I said about holding a grudge. It could help.


CAVUTO: Thank you.

FRIESS: Thanks for the tip. Thank you for the tip.

CAVUTO: Be very well. All right, Foster Friess, one of the nicest guys in any business.

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