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OTR Interviews

Sen. Tim Scott: Why I'm endorsing Marco Rubio

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," February 2, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Well, New Hampshire, it sure is not Iowa. And the 2016 candidates know exactly that after some big surprises last night. The 2016 candidates are now shifting strategy. Some beating the path to New Hampshire and some looking beyond to South Carolina.

In just seconds, Senator Tim Scott is going to tell you who he is endorsing, but here is a hint. It's one of these three candidates.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SEN. TED CRUZ, GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Tonight is a victory for the grass roots. Tonight is a victory for courageous conservatives across Iowa and all across this great nation.

DONALD TRUMP, GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We will go on to get the Republican nomination and we will go on to easily beat Hillary or Bernie or whoever the hell they throw up there. Iowa, we love you, we thank you. You're special. We will be back many, many times. In fact, I think I might come here and buy a farm.

SEN. MARCO RUBIO, GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: When I'm our nominee, we are going to win Iowa and we are going to win this election for this country.

And so, Iowa, thank you so much of. We will never forget you. We will see you soon again and, New Hampshire, we will see you in the morning. Thank you, God bless you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAN SUSTEREN: South Carolina United States Senator Tim Scott goes ON THE RECORD.

Good evening, sir.

SEN. TIM SCOTT, R-S.C.: Thank you, Greta. It's good to be back with you.

VAN SUSTEREN: Nice to have you back. OK, the big news. You are going to make an endorsement. Who are you endorsing?

SCOTT: Marco Rubio. He is the -- he's head and shoulders above the rest of the field. We have a very talented field, but without any question having the chance to host 12 candidates in individual forums throughout South Carolina over the last several months culminating with my poverty forum. One person stands head and shoulder on national defense and economic opportunities, that's Marco Rubio.

VAN SUSTEREN: OK. Just out of curiosity. Who is number two?

SCOTT: Marco Rubio is number one and we have an amazing field. The good news is --

VAN SUSTEREN: So no number two?

SCOTT: Well, here is -- it's like horseshoes. You don't get much for number two. So we are going to focus on making sure that Marco is number one.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. What about the other U.S. senators? You have two other colleagues. You got Senator Rand Paul and you got Senator Ted Cruz. And Senator Ted Cruz, of course, just won Iowa.

SCOTT: Yes. Solid, solid guys. I mean, we have been blessed with really strong conservatives. The 2010 wave, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, an amazing class. Congress members Trey Gowdy and myself and others, we are so thankful that we are serving with good people. The reality of it is, though, we are looking for one person who is going to lead this party and unite the party, beat Hillary Clinton and not compromise our conservative values. That person, without question is, Marco Rubio.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. The other U.S. senator from South Carolina, Senator Lindsey Graham. He was in the race, but is no longer in the race. He has endorsed Governor Jeb Bush. He likes a governor. He likes a governor's experience because senators have a different job and very different experience than a governor.

Do you have any sort of hesitation about -- I know you are new on the Senate, but any hesitation about the fact that Marco Rubio has never been a governor?

SCOTT: I mean, listen, I have had the opportunity, the privilege to run a very successful business, an insurance business and a real estate business. What I'm looking for is someone who has leadership qualities that can come day one and do a very good job.

Marco Rubio has the intellect. He has the capacity for leadership. He is one of the most amazing elected officials I have ever known. But what impresses me the most about Marco is while he is an amazing elected official, he is a better husband. He's a better father. What this country needs is integrity and character and someone who understands the challenges that we face. Marco Rubio is the real deal.

VAN SUSTEREN: The last first term senator that we -- president we currently have a first term senator. How does Marco Rubio compare to President Barack Obama, not in ideology, but just in how they would perform the job as being president?

SCOTT: Well, I am no fan of President Obama. We have seen my vote. The reality of it is what we need in this country is a true rock solid conservative. I believe a Rubio administration is 180-degree turn, which is great news for the future of the country.

VAN SUSTEREN: Can you work with -- you have got some liberals in the Senate. You have got some liberals in the House. And as much as people want everything that he or she wants his way all the time, yes, we do have to work a little bit together in this country. Can he work across the aisle?

SCOTT: I think Marco Rubio has the best opportunity to bring people together. One of the things that is amazing about Marco is while he is 94 out of 100 in some of the conservative rankings, he still has an enthusiastic, encouraging message that draws people together. He is a uniter but, yet, he is completely conservative.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Are you available on February 20th to do our show?

(LAUGHTER)

That's your primary.

SCOTT: Come on down to Greenville, we will be there.

VAN SUSTEREN: I thought I might try to book you on air.

SCOTT: I love it.

VAN SUSTEREN: Anyway, senator, nice to see you, sir.

SCOTT: You, too.