Job creation in focus ahead of Fox Business debates

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," November 9, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FLA., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We have a lot of leaders, sometimes in both parties, that like to tell you how many jobs they created when they were president, when they were governor, when they were senator, when they were mayor.

And I guess I understand kind of what they're trying to say, but the truth is, presidents, governors, senators, congressmen and mayors don't create jobs. The private sector does.



NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Well, that is certainly true.

But as Jack Welch sort of reminds you, those politicians, those in a gubernatorial capacity, as a president, what have you, can lay the groundwork so that the private enterprise can do just that.

Jack Welch joining us right now.

Jack, what do you think of what Marco Rubio is saying? He's obviously taking a jab at the Jeb Bushes, he's taking a jab at those governors, maybe to an extent like a John Kasich in Ohio and others, who argue that they create the jobs, that President Obama says he has created these millions of jobs since he became president, but they in actuality provide the environment that creates those jobs.

Where do you draw the distinction?

JACK WELCH, FORMER CHAIRMAN & CEO, GENERAL ELECTRIC: Well, I draw the distinction totally on the case that their responsibility as leaders in government is to set the table.

And despite the president's claims of great job growth, it's a fraction of what we would have had with pro-growth strategies, pro-growth policies. So I'm totally in the camp of what Marco said. I don't think politicians create the jobs, but they do set the table for the rate of growth of jobs.

CAVUTO: Now, they also provide the means by which you provide a measure of their success, right? This president has been saying, well, if I'm such a schlub, paraphrasing here, then look at the job growth that I have seen, look what is going on with these stock markets, look at all the growth that we have experienced.

Stocks down today, largely on the belief that interest rates are going up, because now they can go up. The economy and the job growth we have seen will justify it going up.

What do you think of that argument? Because that's ultimately the metric by which presidents are scored.

WELCH: Well, real unemployment is at 9.5 to 10 percent, people looking for a job or those that are out of work.

And if you look at the Reagan recovery, see, you can argue whether we would have had 10 million more jobs or 12 million or 14 million more. I'm not sure which one is right, but a hell of a lot more -- almost double what we got out of this, with this anemic recovery, with regulation, et cetera.

And the stock market is just a case of the Fed giving out free money and forcing people into more risk assets.

CAVUTO: Now, when you look at everything that is going on, you're a big believer and you have written extensively on this -- and you're one of the world's most acclaimed CEOs, and I would buy that.

But you liked Ted Cruz a while back. I don't know if you still do.  But one of the things you liked about him was how captivating a speaker he was, how dynamic a presence he was, how he can fill a room, fill a town hall meeting, what you have. I think the worst you could say about him is he should smile more.

Well, he is obviously getting a great deal of interest way beyond you.  Maybe it started with you, Jack, but that he is a galvanizing figure.

Now, the rap against Jeb Bush, if you hear Donald Trump, is that he is dull, low-energy and all of that. So, how person is this energy thing to you and does it translate into success as an executive?

In other words, did you ever pick a dull executive to handle something, or did you factor in other things?

WELCH: I tried not to. Let's put it that way.

And -- but, look, I think what the job of a leader is, to set the table. Where are we going? How are we going to get there, and what is in it for you if we do? And that is what everybody president is going to have to do: Here's where we're going. Here's how we're going to do it, and if it comes out right, here's what is in it for you.

And making that case is what a leader has to do, whether it's a grocery store on the corner, a large multinational, or the president of the United States. To a different degree, that is the challenge, and galvanize and mobilize the people to go on that mission.

CAVUTO: Understood.

A couple of weeks ago, you had candidates complaining about moderators. And then you had people like Chris Christie saying, man up, shut up, deal with it. Then you have Ben Carson saying, this is a cabal, a media cabal to go after me. Then you have people like Josh Earnest saying, the same standards apply to you applied to then Senator Obama, then Chris Christie coming out and saying that's all part of running for this office, you got to deal with it.

What does Jack Welch say?

WELCH: Well, I naturally feel that the Republicans don't quite get a fair, fair shake, whether it's the attack on Rubio's funding, where he might have had a $134 haircut that makes The New York Times.

CAVUTO: Right.

WELCH: It seems ridiculous, when we look at some of the Clinton expenditures from the foundation, when we look at these others that just don't get the same scrutiny.

But, look, I think they're right about one thing. This is a big boy or girl game. And you better be ready to play it and have the skin that is as thick as a hide. And that's the job you got. You signed up for it.

And I think the Republicans play -- overplayed their hand after the debate, not in the debate.

CAVUTO: Right.

WELCH: I think the debate helped them.

But then I think getting into the list of items they want, the temperature, et cetera, was silly.

CAVUTO: Well, no, that -- you're right. That's a tough thing.

But I always think that -- and maybe you can raise with Carson that he did raise genuine points in this tit-for-tat with reporters last week, that there is a very different standard here. And he wanted to bring to people's attention, and don't mistake him, he says, for being a whiner or a baby. He just wants to bring it to their attention that, look, the same scrutiny you're giving me, you would have never given and don't give to a Democrat.

What do you think of that?

WELCH: Yes, I agree with him. Totally agree with him.

CAVUTO: OK. I wasn't expecting that, Jack.

All right. No.


CAVUTO: It's good having you, my friend. Thank you.


WELCH: Hey, Neil, great, great to talk to you.


WELCH: What?

CAVUTO: All right. Interesting. All right. Duly noted.  Jack Welch, thank you. All right.

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