Sen. Thune on Cruz's return to US Senate, supporting Trump

Key Republican lawmaker weighs in


This is a rush transcript from "Your World," May 10, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: So much to talk about in this limited time with Senator John Thune, of course, of South Dakota. He's the Senate Commerce Committee chairman.

And, Senator, I do want to touch on something that is the focus of this interview, what's going on at Facebook and sort of defriending conservative commentary, but on what Ted Cruz said by not endorsing Donald Trump and barely mentioning him, help or heal? What do you think?


SEN. JOHN THUNE, R-S.D.: Well, it's going to take a while, Neil.

These guys have been duking it out for a long time. And I think any time that you have been in that kind of a competitive environment and both vying for the prize, it's going to take a little while for some of those feelings to disperse and for -- give them both a chance to sort of reconcile.

I think that will happen eventually. Ted made it very clear, as you just heard, that he didn't see a path forward. He's accept that. And the question, I guess, going forward is, what role does he play in the campaign? And that's something that he and Donald Trump will have to figure out.

But I think that's going to take a little bit of time. And I think you have got to give him a little bit of time.

CAVUTO: You know, Senator, obviously, I can't see the leap to being a running mate for Donald Trump, given what he has just said, or, for that matter, Marco Rubio taking himself out of the running if it was ever entertained, this on the heels of virtually the entire Bush family opting out of the Republican Party Convention entirely and not endorsing Mr. Trump at all.

Are you worried the party is not getting around this, not embracing Donald Trump? He did win this thing fair and square, and they don't seem to be doing it.

THUNE: Well, I think that we all have to respect the will of the voters.  And he did this the old-fashioned way. He got more votes than anybody else.

And that's the way our democracy works. And so people who don't agree with him being our nominee can have that view. But I think, before it's all said and done, I think you will start to see people come around to the view that giving Barack Obama a third term in the form of Hillary Clinton is not a good solution for the future of this country.

And I think that will start to motivate a lot of people who otherwise might not find common ground on this. But we have got a convention coming up and a long fall campaign to follow. And I think there's a lot of time for people to sort of unify and I think get together as a team for the fall campaign, because that's what's it's going to take in order for us to be successful in November.

CAVUTO: You have come up on some short lists as V.P. What do you think of that?

THUNE: Oh, not much.


CAVUTO: If asked, what would you do?

THUNE: I like the job I have. I'm busy with it.

What is that?

CAVUTO: If asked, what would you do?

THUNE: Well, look, I don't -- that's speculative. I don't want to go there. I'm busy in the Senate.

CAVUTO: Are you supporting Mr. Trump as the nominee?

THUNE: I'm running for reelection to the Senate.

CAVUTO: I understand.

THUNE: Well, look, I have said I'll support the nominee. And he's the presumptive nominee, and so the answer is yes.

CAVUTO: OK. Now to the subject at hand, and that is Facebook, charges that it leaves out conservative commentary, news, and never gets it to its readers, viewers, whatever.

Now, Facebook says that's not happening. Didn't affect the stock today, raced to an all-time high. You're concerned, though. You think that the fact that it might be suppressing conservative comments or trending comments like that worries you.

So, what are you going to do?

THUNE: Right.

Well, we just -- we basically asked a question that. There was reporting a day ago that was fairly extensive based on the input from former Facebook employees that in fact they were suppressing conservative content and in some cases injecting more liberal stories into their trending topics.

And all we're simply saying is that, as a platform that professes to be neutral, that professes to use an objective algorithm for determining what those topics and what, frankly, 167 million users that they have actually see in the form of news, that that's what they're putting out there, then that is what they ought to be doing.

And so it's just a question of having them clarify what they -- how they go about doing this, if in fact -- what is their policy and if their policy has been breached, what they have done to correct that. It's just a series of questions to try and get to the bottom of some very, I think, serious allegations about a company that is professing one thing, and having employees say something else.

CAVUTO: We will watch very closely, Senator.

THUNE: Or former employees, I should say.

CAVUTO: I understand.

Sir, thank you very, very much on this very busy news day for handling both subjects. We appreciate it.

THUNE: Thanks, Neil. Great to be with you.

CAVUTO: All right, Senator John Thune.

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