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Hannity

Exclusive: On the campaign trail with Mitt and Ann Romney

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," June 21, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Governor Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, are continuing on their multi-state bus tour. Earlier this week, I was able to hop on board that bus in Michigan as they travel between campaign stops. Here is part 2 of my exclusive sit-down.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HANNITY: I saw big crowds in Michigan, 140 days to go. How are you guys feeling?

MITT ROMNEY, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It feels great. It's fun being out on the trail. It's warm, big crowds, a lot of enthusiasm. You know, there's a growing sense that we are going to win this thing so it feels pretty darn good.

HANNITY: You were just quoted as saying that Michigan is in play. Let's go through some of the states. Michigan, obviously Wisconsin, it's a different ballgame now because of Scott Walker?

M. ROMNEY: Sure. Scott has been an effective governor there. They have seen the effects of some of his policies, balancing the budget, keeping taxes down. People have seen their tax rates go down and all this comes together to say Wisconsin folks are interested in that kind of leadership. I think Wisconsin is in play and we can win Wisconsin.

HANNITY: Pennsylvania?

M. ROMNEY: Pennsylvania, as well, I was delighted with the crowds there. In fact, I think the president's energy policies have surprised a lot of people who traditionally vote Democrat and they say, look, this president just doesn't get how important energy is not only to the energy sector, but to the manufacturing sector in this country. So people in Pennsylvania are saying, you know, regardless of whether Republican or Democrat, we need someone who understands jobs.

HANNITY: You were just telling me before we got on the bus with you, and thank you for inviting us on the bus, that you had never seen him so energized. Because you were watching him do the rope line and he stays out there longer than he's supposed to and shaking hands.

ANN ROMNEY, WIFE OF GOVERNOR ROMNEY: You get so much energy from the people that you meet. There's clearly a defining line in the sand. This election is probably the most important election for a long, long time.

And it's going to make a huge change in where America is headed. I think his speeches make that very clear that this is the moment, this is absolutely the moment that everyone has to get engaged and we've got to make a right choice here.

HANNITY: I love reading Malcolm Gladwell 's book "Outliers," "Tipping Point." Is this a tipping point in the American election? It's a choice election, but is it a tipping point for the country?

M. ROMNEY: I think we are on the road to Greece or to Spain or Italy or to California. We are on a road that says, look, we can have a setting where we spend more and more as a government, and we borrow more and government becomes more and more intrusive in our lives and we change the character of America and we become more like Europe. And we know where that leads. That leads to Europe with high unemployment, very low wage growth, potential fiscal calamity. Or we are going to return to the principles of opportunity and freedom. And giving people in this country the chance to realize their dreams, killing the debt that's crushing business today and the next generation. And that's the kind of choice we have. So whether it's a tipping point or a fork in the road, I'm not sure which metaphor you want to use. But this is a defining time for America.

A. ROMNEY: I feel that from the crowds. I think if you see the size of our crowds now, I think everyone there feels the same thing. We are in that fork in the road moment and we want to keep America America. These people are really patriotic, they love America, they feel like we are going in the wrong direction and they sense that there is something wrong with Washington and that we've got to turn it around.

HANNITY: It's interesting, I didn't know this one story where it was on Super Tuesday, most people know, and we talked about how you have struggled with MS for over 10 years now. And it flared up on Super Tuesday and you didn't tell him.

A. ROMNEY: I know what he would have told me. Just prior, it was like a few days before. I knew he would just say, "OK, you are off the trail, you are home, you are done," and I knew that was not an option.

HANNITY: Wasn't an option for you?

A. ROMNEY: Wasn't an option.

M. ROMNEY: I'm not happy with her. I'm not happy. No secrets. No secrets. She is right. I would have told her we have to stop. She has people to give her the health care treatments she needs to stay healthy and I would have said, "Get off the trail and go see your docs."

HANNITY: I might be breaking news here. This might be the first time we have presidential candidate fighting on air. If you want to keep going --

M. ROMNEY: No, I love her and trust her, but when it comes to her health, that's got to come first.

HANNITY: How important is it, you are on the bus, and with your family, how important is it that Ann is here with you and your kids are out there on the trail with you. They are surrogates for you on the campaign.

M. ROMNEY: Well, it makes all the difference in the world for me to have Ann with me, to be able to spend the day together, to both speak together at the events and shake hands together and be on the bus and chat about the event and then at night to just sort of relax and decompress together. It allows me to keep going. If I'm away from Ann for very long, my kids say it's like I need the Ann stabilizer to keep me on track.

HANNITY: Is that true?

A. ROMNEY: Yes, I'm a calming influence in his life, which is nice, and obviously I think together we bring a balance for each other. It's a nice relationship we have, a good partnership that we enjoy.

HANNITY: You seem very comfortable speaking on the podium and out on the campaign trail and shaking hands. Is this a role -- as somebody who has never worked a day in her life -- I'll get into that later --

A. ROMNEY: I actually love it. I have to tell you, I love it. You saw the crowds out there. You saw the people. They are fantastic and they have so much hope riding on us. I have to tell you really what it does for me, it's humbling, very, very humbling. It is like this awesome responsibility is sinking on top of us. Because so many people are counting on us to carry the day for them. And I'm sensing that responsibility. I really feel it and it's a humbling experience.

HANNITY: What do people say more than anything else to you?

A. ROMNEY: Save the country.

HANNITY: Really, they're using those words?

A. ROMNEY: You've got to save the country. It's now or never. And, you know, then they will -- if you spend a little bit more time with them and often we don't have a lot of time on those rope lines, but in smaller groups where we do, people then express their specific concerns and it's always about the economy. It's always about jobs. It's always about deficit spending. It's about leaving their children with debt. That's all people talk about.

But there's one other thing they talk about which is so, so sweet. There is not a day that goes by and there's hardly not a person that I don't speak to that says, "I'm praying for you." I find that unbelievable. This country is a faithful country, they believe in God, they believe in the power of prayer, and I believe that that is a very sustaining power and I think why Mitt and I are doing so well.

HANNITY: It seems to really touch you.

A. ROMNEY: It's so touching. I know they are saying it to me because of my health and they are saying it to Mitt because they believe they want God's hand guiding this country.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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