Gov. McDonnell: Romney's winning independents now

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," August 30, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Governor Mitt Romney now officially the GOP presidential nominee.


MITT ROMNEY, GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Mr. Chairman and delegates, I accept your nomination for president of the United States.


The centerpiece of the president's entire reelection campaign is attacking success. Is it any wonder that someone who attacks success has led the worst economic recovery since the Great Depression?


Now is a time to restore the promise of America.


Many Americans have given up on this president but they haven't ever thought about giving up. Not on themselves, not on each other, and not on America.

What is needed in our country today is not complicated or profound. Doesn't take a special government commission to tell us what America needs. But America needs is jobs. Lots of jobs.


President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans.


And to heal the planets. My promise is to help you and your family.



VAN SUSTEREN: We are coming to you live from Tampa, Florida where Governor Romney just gave the biggest speech of his life, and in just moments, right here, Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson, Florida Congressman Alan West and Connie Mack, and Utah Senator Orrin Hatch. But we start with Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell.

Nice to see you, sir.


VAN SUSTEREN: Well, the -- a lot of the speech tonight is about jobs and he says -- and Governor Romney says, I have a plan to create 12 million new jobs. Is there a magic pill?

MCDONNELL: No. It starts with the basics of a good free enterprise system, low taxes, regulation, litigation. Being positive about success. You heard him talk a lot about that tonight. Entrepreneurship. Rewarding small businesses. That's a big part of his plan. And just being positive about our economy. I mean the leader of the free world can help a lot by what he says in his tone, and making a difference.

President Obama comes to Virginia and says you didn't build that, someone else made that happen. Mitt Romney says, I know you can do it, I believe in the American dream. I believe in you. It's a big change. Business respond to that.

VAN SUSTEREN: You mentioned your home state, of course, of Virginia. You see a lot of love these days. President Obama was just with there.


VAN SUSTEREN: And tomorrow is the first stop of your party's official nominees.

MCDONNELL: The enthusiasm is much different. President Obama in Charlottesville yesterday, half the crowd he drew two years ago. Mitt Romney, first stop from Tampa, Richmond, Virginia, tomorrow afternoon with Paul Ryan.

We have front row seats at the convention. Governor Romney obviously thinks Virginia is important. You know we're a conservative state. President Obama did a good job four years ago. Very uplifting, positive message, won Virginia the first time in 44 years.

But Greta, now, it's small ball. It's tax returns, it's Bain Capital, it's social issues, it's division. Very big contrast to that Romney-Reagan optimism that you saw tonight about an actively uplifting vision of American exceptionalism. I left inspired and I think he is winning independents now. And I think he'll continue from a dead heat right now and win Virginia.

VAN SUSTEREN: We had a surprise guest tonight. The mystery guest and that was Clint Eastwood. We have some sound from this.


CLINT EASTWOOD, FILM DIRECTOR/ACTOR: I'd just like to say something, ladies and gentlemen. Something that I think is very important. It is that, you, we, we own this country.


EASTWOOD: Thank you. Thank you. But yes, we own it. And it's not you owning it. And not politicians owning it. Politicians are employees of ours. And --


EASTWOOD: So they're just going to come around and beg for votes every few years. And it's the same old deal. But I just think that it's important that you realize that you're the best in the world. And whether you're a Democrat or whether you're a Republican, or whether you're a libertarian or whatever you're the best and we should not ever forget that. And we -- when somebody does not do the job we've got to let them go.


EASTWOOD: Let them go. Yes.


VAN SUSTEREN: Well, the message if he's not doing the job let him go. But do you worry that there's going to be -- I'll tell you, Twitter -- often Twitterland, it is on fire about the controversy over having him on stage tonight.

MCDONNELL: It's unusual to have a Hollywood actor out there supporting a Republican in the first place. I think despite the shtick that may not have worked too well with the empty chair that one line that you just saw was powerful. If someone not doing the job you've got to let him go.

And I think that was Mitt Romney's message as well. The lofty promises of President Obama about either saving the oceans or cooling the planet. What he said is, I just want to help you and your family, because unemployment is at a record level and debt is through the roof at $16 trillion. Mitt Romney came through as a problem solver. And I think at the end of the day that's what Clint Eastwood was trying to say.

VAN SUSTEREN: If you think that there'd too much talk about Clint Eastwood and not enough about -- because you talk about the shtick that you said didn't go too well. You think that it's sort of regrettable that it may have -- you know, may divert from the intention of the speech tonight? And in fact even from Senator Rubio's speech.

MCDONNELL: You know you have 58 speakers. Some of them were homeruns, like Ann Romney, Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio and of course the closing argument from -- for Mitt Romney. And that's what people are going to remember. People don't vote for Hollywood actors they're going to vote for who the president of the United States is going to be. And at the end of the day he needed to do three things. Humanize himself which he did on a wonderful way with his life story, touching moment about his dad putting roses on his mom's table. Saying with a contrast was and how he can make it better. I think he did that, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: Governor, nice to see you.