Peter Ueberroth, California Gubernatorial Candidate

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This is a partial transcript from Your World with Neil Cavuto, August 27, 2003, that was edited for clarity. Click here for complete access to all of Neil Cavuto's CEO interviews.

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TERRY KEENAN, GUEST HOST: Arnold is leading the pack and Cruz Bustamante (search) pulling up the rear in second place there.

But my next guest arguably, though, has one of the best resumes of the bunch. He’s the man behind the profitable 1984 L.A. Summer Olympics and former commissioner of Major League Baseball (search). Republican candidate Peter Ueberroth joins me now from San Diego.

Mr. Ueberroth, nice to have you with us here.


KEENAN: You know, your party’s facing a very tough challenge, not just winning in the recall but then winning in the general election. With Arnold Schwarzenegger (search) leading in the polls, why split the Republican vote?

UEBERROTH: It’s not really not about Republicans, or about Democrats to me, it’s about all the Californians.

If you take a look at what’s happening in the polls in the registration offices today, independents are coming in from everywhere.

As you follow this next six weeks, Californians -- Republicans, Democrats, and Independents -- are going to look for somebody who can manage this very serious problem. They’re going to look for a problem-solver.

I’ve proven to Californians that we can come together and do real important things, the Olympic games and during the riots, and I was even asked by both parties to help when we had our last downturn.

So those are my credentials, and, when all the fanfare gets over and all the immediacy and running to polls, people are going to get very serious about this thing. In the beginning this recall was just a recall. Now it’s become a mandate.

I’m comfortable that it’s going to be passed because Democrats, Republicans, and Independents will vote for it, and then they’ve got to decide who’s going to be the best person to do the job for three years, who will focus on it, who’s going to be serious about it, and I think they’re going to choose me.

KEENAN: So how are you going to be different from Mr. Schwarzenegger because he seems to be playing by your playbook. You’ve long said you’re the businessman here, you’re not the politician, and, you know, Arnold’s basically saying the same thing.

UEBERROTH: I’m not going to take any shots and they’re already starting to fly all over the place. I’m taking no shots at anybody who wants to be a public servant or who is a public servant. So what other people are doing doesn’t really bother me at all.

In the din of this whole thing, there’s going to be some percentage of votes that you’re going to need to win, and I think Californians will get very serious. You know, you cover the business world. We have a disaster out here, and you know, virtually every voter has a friend or themselves who’s lost a job.

And so this is serious. This is not a game. This is not a circus. This is real stuff. And they’re going to pick the person they think that can turn the state around and turn it around quickly.

KEENAN: Schwarzenegger has not taken a no-tax pledge. Are you going to do so?

UEBERROTH: I’m a no-tax person, and let me be real clear about that. There’s no question that today California is drowning in taxes...

KEENAN: Drowning in regulation as well.

UEBERROTH: Well, you don’t have enough time. We could go into all of those. But, certainly taxes right now would be totally counterproductive. So I’m against taxes and will not raise taxes.

If we raise any type of tax, any type of tax that’s laden on the taxpayer in California, we get a little bit more money from that tax and we lose a lot more money because jobs leave the state, good-paying jobs, and they’re not replaced. So nobody should argue about whether they’re for or against taxes.

We should all be against taxes. Taxes won’t work. We cannot tax ourselves out of the real crisis that Californians face.

KEENAN: And, you know, those jobs are leaving the state not just for Nevada and places to the East -- Intel, for example, today saying it’s going to build a $200-million plant in China. A lot of your best jobs are going to Asia. How would you address that situation?

UEBERROTH: Well, you know, global companies have to make smart decisions, and, yes, there’s going to be many companies that take jobs to India and take jobs to China, but, also, to just use your example of China, we need to have a stake in the ground that says to the companies that are emerging in China -- and wait until you see that rush -- if you want to come to North America, which is the absolute most important, absolute most important market in the whole wide world, come to California. We’re going to be job-friendly. We’re going to prove this is your entry point.

KEENAN: And I’m afraid that’s going to have to be our exit point.

UEBERROTH: That’s all right.

KEENAN: But thanks for joining us today. Good to have you with us.


KEENAN: Peter Ueberroth.

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