This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," October 6, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And welcome to this very special edition of "Hannity." We are live in Atlanta's Centennial Park and we are celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Fox News Channel.

And tonight, I'll be joined by some great friends of the program. Many have seen us through the ups and downs of the past 15 years. Like Bob Beckel is here. Colonel Oliver North is here. We'll also check in with Dana Perino, radio talk show host Neal Boortz. Comedian Jeff Foxworthy, and we'll be taking you down memory lane, much to my chagrin, as we open the "Hannity" and "Hannity and Colmes" video vaults tonight. It's going to be a great hour here in Atlanta. My own old home in the South.

But first tonight, we turn our attention to the 2012 presidential race. Now, with Chris Christie and Governor Palin officially out of the running, well, we may now have a clear view of what the final field of GOP contenders are.

Here with me in Atlanta, Atlanta's own, one of those contenders, please welcome former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Mr. Speaker, how are you?




HANNITY: I just said to the crowd as we were coming on the air. Because I was a local radio guy back in 1994. Up until '96 when I came up, when the Fox News Channel started. And I was there the night that you became the Speaker of the House. For the first time in 40 years, Republicans took over. You have come out with a new Contract With America. Can you duplicate that great success?

GINGRICH: Oh, I think with the help of the American people, we're going to do much more than we did in 1994. I think the 21st century contract is going to reset the country back on the right track. And I think frankly, Barack Obama is doing all he can to set the stage for enormous victory, he's combining radicalism and failure of performance, and if you have both in the same president, it's almost indefensible. So, I think we have a chance for huge election next year. And for a principled election about specific reforms that the American people would then expect the Congress to pass and they'll expect Washington to implement.

HANNITY: It seems the field is now set with Governor Palin's announcement yesterday. Governor Christie's announcement the day before. Is it about the right time in your estimation? These are the field of candidates. Now, we are going into the heavy political season. Is that good for the Republican Party to have that set at this point?

GINGRICH: Well, I think it's inevitable now because with Florida coming forward, you are going to start seeing at the end of this month, who files in New Hampshire, who files in Florida, I mean, there is a date when the door closes. And somebody could get in late. But it's very, very hard to get in late and win. So, I think this is the field. And I think the amazing thing for those of us here in Georgia tonight, is that it's very possible that two of the three finalists are going to be Georgians.


HANNITY: Well, to support that, there have been -- the latest polls show a surge. And the two candidates now that have emerged, your poll numbers have come up dramatically. Herman Cain's poll numbers have come up dramatically. So, you talk about two of three Georgians. What's changed? You know? What do you think has happened that all of a sudden, you know, we watched Michele Bachmann go up and she has kind of gone down. Perry comes in, there was a lot of buzz, he went down. Herman Cain and you are now doing well. Why do you think there is this constant change going on?

GINGRICH: Well, I think, first of all, the elite media tried to pick the candidates. The elite media, they spent weeks, I mean, there were something like 115 articles that said, this is now a two-man race. And the country looked up and said, you don't have the right to tell us who is in the race.


I think, second, Herman and I, you know, we go back to fighting Hillarycare together in the early 90s. And Herman and I both have tried to enter this race with positive ideas, positive attitude, we're both basically very happy to be allowed to be here. We think it's amazing that in America, people like us are allowed to run for president. And we don't have any sense of expectations. So, we are not there thinking it's ours and you have to give it to us. I think when people have seen some food fights between some of the candidates, that all the candidates that get involved in that kind of negativity shrink simultaneously. Their consultants may think they are clever. You know, you ought to go out and pick this fight. What they don't realize is that when you get candidates in this kind of economy with this kind of crisis, the American people want somebody positive. They want somebody with a solution. They want somebody who cares more about the country than about their personal ambition.

HANNITY: All right.


What -- what worked for you, it seemed in '94, was very specific programs.


HANNITY: I think we are at the tipping point. I read Malcolm Gladwell's book, "The Tipping Point." And I am afraid when we have 46.2 percent of Americans in poverty, that's scary and unnecessary. One in four children in poverty. One in seven Americans on food stamps. These numbers are frightening, and in Georgia, we shouldn't have 10.5 percent unemployment. That shouldn't be.


HANNITY: So, my question is, it seems what succeeded in '94 was ideas. You have just now, last Thursday or Friday, you outlined a new contract. And I want to you take some time because I think ideas are going to play a big part in this coming election. Tell us about the new one.

GINGRICH: Well, first of all, I think that's right. And I think what you are going to see, when the third quarter fund-raising report comes in, that the guys that raised the most money have fewer votes and the guys with the most ideas have more votes. And in fact, the country's not impressed with how big your bank roll is, they're impressed with how big your solutions are. And that's clearly showing up in the polling then. Now, last Thursday in Des Moines, I outlined a 21st century Contract With America. Everybody who wants to who's watching tonight, can go to Newt.org, they can download the contract, there are some 36,000 people the first day go and look at it. A number of them downloaded, sent it to their friends. Very straight forward. There's a legislative component, there is an executive order component on the first day. There is a training component, there's a citizen component.

HANNITY: I'm going to slow you down. Executive orders, you say within hours of being sworn in, and you would...

GINGRICH: Yes, sir. Look, it's very straight forward. You finish the inaugural address. You say thank you to everybody. The band plays. You walk into the room in the Capital and for an hour or an hour and-a-half, you sign somewhere between 50 and 200 executive orders, shaping the government within hours. You know, about the time that Barack Obama gets to Andrews Air Force Base to get on Air Force One to go back home...


And I can tell you right now, and anybody who wants to can go to Newt.org and they can offer their ideas. The very first one's simple. We will abolish all the White House "czars" at about 3:45 on January 21st.


HANNITY: Real quickly because we are running out of time. Go through the other...

GINGRICH: Repeal Obamacare, follow the Reagan policy of creating jobs. He created a million, 100,000 jobs in September of '83. We will find out in the morning how Obama's doing. An American Energy Policy, control the border by January 1, 2014, period, no excuses. Balance the federal budget. Modernize it to save at least $500 billion a year with modern management systems. Use brain Science to dramatically improve health outcomes and other modern medical devices, to bring down costs, extend lives and increase American jobs.

A new American National Security Policy. Tomorrow, at the Values Voters Summit I'm going to outline a speech on taking on the judiciary and getting it back to being committed to the American Constitution. Implement the 10th amendment, so that we return power back home. And finally, save Medicare and Social Security by increasing the choices of the American people, so they can be good consumers and they can have a better future, that they're in charge of, not the politicians.


HANNITY: That seems pretty popular. Mr. Speaker, it's great to have you with us on our 15th anniversary. Thank you so much for being with us.

GINGRICH: Great to be with you.

HANNITY: I appreciate it. Thank you.

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