Gov. Rick Scott: Donald Trump has America's pulse

On 'Your World,' Florida governor says outsiders are winning because they talk about what Americans care about


This is a rush transcript from "Your World," January 6, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: All right, I was reading a piece by Florida Republican Governor Rick Scott that wasn't necessarily, in USA Today, an endorsement of Donald Trump.

But, Governor Scott, who joins me now, it did sound like a chance for you to say, quit the pile-on on the part of maybe the establishment against Donald Trump. Am I reading that correctly?

GOV. RICK SCOTT, R-FLA.: Well, I think the point is, I think Republicans and I think Americans are tired of a president that has taken over our economy with taxes and with regulation.

And Donald Trump is talking about this. He's expressing the frustration.  But we're tired. We're tired of a federal takeover of our economy. We are tired of taxes, ObamaCare, regulation. And I think we're -- the candidate is going to be the candidate that figures out how to have a credible plan for robust job creation.

And I think all the Republican candidates have that opportunity. We have Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush. Mike Huckabee down -- lives here. Ben Carson, and Donald Trump is here part-time. But Americans are tired of where we are going.

CAVUTO: I read into your comments that you wanted to stop the infighting, that you maybe looked at the distinct possibility that Donald Trump -- correct me if I'm wrong at any moment -- could be the nominee. And you don't want him so badly damaged that he goes on to lose.

Am I reading that correctly?

SCOTT: Neil, what I think is, they ought to talk about jobs.

When I ran in 2010, outsiders were winning because they were talking about what Americans care about. We need more jobs. We have added a million jobs in five years since I have been governor. We need millions of jobs in this country. We have got to get Republicans to talk about it.

CAVUTO: Well, I think what others are saying in your party, though, Governor -- I understand, but what they are saying in your party -- not all -- but they're saying that Donald Trump might have some very good messages, but he would be a bad messenger and go down to horrific defeat.

You obviously think otherwise.

SCOTT: Oh, look, I believe this is the year for Republicans. I think we're tired of what Barack Obama is doing. Hillary Clinton will be another four years of Barack Obama. I think a Republican is going to win.

But I think the Republican that wins is going to be a Republican...


CAVUTO: So if Donald Trump were the nominee, if Donald Trump were the nominee, he could win?

SCOTT: Oh, absolutely.


SCOTT: I believe this is going to be a Republican year. It's going to be -- but the winner of the Republican primaries is going to be the person that talks about jobs and has a plan for jobs, just like I did.

And other outsiders that have won, they have focused on jobs.

CAVUTO: But also, you know, it was interesting coming from you, Governor, because, of course, you, too, were a very successful businessman in the health care arena.

You translated that into political success. So, I'm wondering if you are sending out a reminder that just because you are from outside the political petri dish doesn't mean you can't succeed. Was that sort of subliminal?

SCOTT: Well, I think what you are seeing -- I think what you are seeing, Chris Christie was an attorney, a prosecutor. Ted Cruz was a prosecutor.  Ron Johnson, senator from Wisconsin, was a manufacturer.

Bruce Rauner, businessperson. Matt Bevin won Kentucky, businessperson.


SCOTT: What you are seeing is outsiders that are bringing energy into this, but all of our Republican candidates can win if they start getting on the message that we need a dramatic change in the federal government.

We have got to cut taxes, we have got to balance our budget, we have got to reduce regulation. We can't have the federal government running our lives.

Neil, how can you build a business today when you have all this just complete federal takeover of how you run your business, whether -- whatever area of the federal government it is, they are running our businesses.

CAVUTO: Now, when you and I last had a chance to speak in person, when I was there for your Florida summit, I think back in June of last year, Donald Trump wasn't even on the horizon. Jeb Bush was the rock star, the party favorite.

And we talked to all the prominent Republican candidates who would formally announce, some -- some of them weeks, months after that event. Are you surprised now that your state, a crucial winner-take-all state, might not be won by the two favorite sons, either Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio? Does that possibility surprise you?

SCOTT: I think Florida is -- it's the biggest swing state in the country.  I think it is going to be a national race when it gets to Florida.

It's winner-takes-all March 15. I think it is going to be about jobs.  That's why I did that summit about jobs.

CAVUTO: Right.

SCOTT: And that's what every person talked about.

But, look, Jeb Bush did a great job as governor. He -- our graduation rates are way up in Florida over K-12 because of Jeb Bush, things he did.  Marco Rubio has done a great job fighting the oppression of the Castro brothers in Cuba.

In the end, the Republican that wins is going to be the person that says, we have got to have a dramatic -- not a tweak, a dramatic turnaround in how we deal with growing jobs in this country. That's what we have got to see out of the Republican candidate. And I think that's who is going to win, whoever does that the best.

CAVUTO: All right, well, that isn't quite what I asked.

But does it surprise you now that those two gentlemen you mentioned, Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush, might not win their home state?

SCOTT: Well, I think it's early. Neil, I think it's early.

CAVUTO: It is.

SCOTT: I think we're going to see a lot of changes in the next 60 days.

CAVUTO: All right. Governor, it's always a pleasure. Sir, thank you very, very much.

SCOTT: Nice seeing you, Neil. Have a good day. Happy New Year.

CAVUTO: All right, to you as well.

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