Pataki 'appalled' that so few candidates took on Trump at GOP debate

This is a rush transcript from "Sunday Morning Futures," August 9, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARIA BARTIROMO, HOST: Good Sunday morning.

The race for the GOP nomination hotter than ever following two debates that drew a record audience right here on the Fox News Channel.

Good morning, everyone. I'm Maria Bartiromo. Welcome to "Sunday Morning Futures."

As we wait for the release of new polls this morning, I'll ask one candidate, former New York Governor George Pataki, about his performance Thursday and the issues he feels are most pivotal in the upcoming primaries.

As for the Democrats, the FBI now involved in the Hillary Clinton e- mail investigation as more reports suggest Vice President Joe Biden may soon enter the 2016 picture. Our panel will dissect both races.

And key members of Congress this weekend revealing their stances on the Iran nuclear deal. One in particular drawing the ire of the White House. The chairman of the New York Republican Party on Senator Chuck Schumer's no vote as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."

All 17 GOP candidates back to business this morning following the first Republican debates. The first debate saw all seven candidates put aside the banter and mostly stick to the issues. George Pataki saying he delivered in a blue state as governor of New York and can do the same in the White House. Governor Pataki joins us right now.

Governor, good to have you on the program. Welcome.

GOV. GEORGE PATAKI, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hey, good morning, Maria. Nice being on with you.

BARTIROMO: Congratulations to you. Fresh off of your debate on Thursday. What was your takeaway from the debate?

PATAKI: Now (ph), thank you. First, I'm very pleased that for the first time the American people got to hear from me and the reaction I've gotten is very good. And I think all in all most of the candidates did very well. But I kept asking myself, they have ideas, how are they going to get it done? And you started out, Maria, I got it done in a blue state. I got it done with a two to one Democratic house. And it seems to me, regardless of who controls Congress, nothing seems to change. I can change things in Washington, and that's what the American people want.

BARTIROMO: So let's talk about what needs to be changed and the real important issues to American voters today. Jobs, the economy front and center, race. When you look at the economy and race, these are the two issues that are resonating across the country, as well as, of course, foreign policy. What are your solutions to creating jobs, governor?

PATAKI: Well, Maria, I think you're right, it's about jobs and it's about protecting the American people in a dangerous world. On jobs, we have to throw out a corrupt tax code and lower the tax burden. The rich and powerful have all these exemptions and loopholes and credits. They have got to go. And we have to lower the taxes on working Americans. I know I can do that. When I was governor with a Democratic house, I reduced taxes by more than the other 49 states combined.

And the second thing we have to do is protect Americans. Just as one example, we do not bow down to radical Islam anywhere. Our Marines shouldn't be taking off their uniforms, they should be putting on their guns. And we have to be proactive to protect us against ISIS. You know, Maria, I was governor on September 11th. I saw the horror of radical Islam firsthand. I'm not going to sit back and be passive when this threat continues to grow.

BARTIROMO: So I want to get back to the economy in a moment, but we're on foreign policy right now, let's stay there. What are the solutions to defeating ISIS then?

PATAKI: Well, there's two solutions. First of all, do not let them have access to any media here in America. The idea that they are recruiting other Americans to engage in violent jihad is just criminal and it's not protected speech. They are yelling fire in a crowded theater. That's not protected by the First Amendment. Shut down their access to Twitter. Shut down any radical Islamist trying to engage in jihad so that we can protect Americans here.

But then, in the Middle East, ISIS has recruiting centers, training centers, western citizens with passports, sophisticated weapons and social media. We have got to empower our allies on the ground. The Kurds in Iraq, the Sunni in Iraq, not by sending weapons through Baghdad, but by arming, training and supporting them directly. That's step number one.

And then, if need be, we have got to send in special operations to destroy those training centers, destroy those recruiting centers over there. No 10 -year war. No nation building. Destroy their ability to attack us here over there so that we can be safe at home.

BARTIROMO: Yes. Well, one interesting note, while the debate was going on, on Thursday, Chuck Schumer comes out and says that he will vote no on the Iran deal. What was your observation on that? And do you think Congress will have a shot in reversing this?

PATAKI: The Iran deal is an abomination. Calling it a deal implies the United States got something. It seems to me the number one sponsor of terror, Iran, got everything. If - forget about the nuclear weapons for a minute, which we can never do. But they have - will have $150 billion to continue to support their terrorist activities, not just in the Middle East but around the world. Their number one terrorist commander flies to meet with Putin. It's not to buy caviar, it's to buy missiles, it's to buy weapons, it's to buy weapons of terror to be used against America and our allies. I hope Congress votes this down. But if they don't, I can tell you, Maria, day one, I will do everything in my power to make sure Iran never has a nuclear weapon, period.

BARTIROMO: That's certainly resonating with the American people because people are afraid. They don't know what this means that Iran is now going to be seeing all this money, $150 billion once the sanctions are lifted.

Let me get back to another issue that is certainly resonating with the American people, and that is wages, governor. Wages have not moved in about seven or eight years. We continue to see the most recent jobs report on Friday show that wages were up 0.2 of a percent year over year. What is it going to take to actually move wages and have the average family out there actually feeling the impact of an economic recovery? Because they haven't felt it yet.

PATAKI: Absolutely, Maria. The biggest single impediment to a stronger economy is the federal government. I'll give you one example, ObamaCare. How many millions, somewhere between 6 million and 8 million Americans, are working part-time who want to be working full-time because their employer doesn't want to come under ObamaCare. We need better jobs.

Our taxes on corporations are the highest in the developed world. I would lower that rate. And, by the way, on manufacturing, Maria, we can make things in America. We have got to make things in America again. I would have the lowest taxes on manufacturers anywhere in the developed world. Let's have factories here, good paying jobs.

You know, my four grandparents came here and worked in a factory. During college, over vacations, I worked in a factory. These are great jobs. We have a great workforce, entrepreneurs, venture capital. What we don't have is a government regulatory tax climate that allows corporations to build factories here and compete. I will change that and we will make things and have great jobs in America again.

And by the way, Maria --


PATAKI: By the way, when I left as governor, we had the lowest unemployment rate in New York state since they started keeping records. We had over 24 billion in private sector investments, in factories in upstate New York to make computer chips. We can do that in America.

BARTIROMO: Yes, you know what, you've got some answers to some real solid questions and issues that America cares about.

Let me just ask you about the money movement here because on the debate stage the second debate, you know, it was interesting to see that Donald Trump had - had - had - had given money to so many of the people on that stage. They - he also has given money to you and to the George Pataki campaign. Let me - how - how do you jive, you know, with that, the fact that he's given to Hillary, he's given to Nancy Pelosi, he's given to a lot of people, he's even given to you, governor?

PATAKI: Well, he always said I was a great governor until I started attacking him. But what was appalling among many of his other appalling comments about Megyn Kelly, about Mexicans, about our veterans, was how he was doing it to buy politicians. That's not a person we need as president.

And, Megyn, I have - or, Maria, I have to tell you, I was appalled at that debate, that so few of my fellow running mates or candidates were willing to take on Donald Trump and say he is not qualified to be president of the United States. If you're not willing to stand up to Donald Trump, if you're afraid of him, how are you going to stand up to Putin or Ayatollah Khamenei. I asked them to denounce Donald Trump's candidacy. It is hurting the party and hurting our country.

BARTIROMO: All right, governor, we'll be watching the developments. Good to have you on the program this morning. Thank you.

PATAKI: Thank you.

BARTIROMO: We'll see you soon. Governor George Pataki there.

Let's head down south now to Atlanta where Republican presidential hopefuls hot off the first big debate are working to break away from the PAC. They are taking part in the annual red state gathering hosted by conservative website and blog Fox News' senior correspondent Eric Shawn joins us live with that angle.

Eric, good morning to you.

ERIC SHAWN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Maria, and good morning, everyone.

Well, Donald Trump was not there. He was disinvited. And, guess what, that meant the candidates really did talk about the issues.


JEB BUSH, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: My pledge to you is, I'm going to fight hard, I'm going to fight with heart, I'm going to do this in a hopeful, optimistic way. I'm going to do my best not to tear down my opponents because I admire most of them.


SHAWN: Notice that Jeb Bush said he admires most, he didn't say all of his Republican rivals. At the Red State event in Atlanta, the economy, the Iran deal, Obamacare and the very future of our country were vigorously raised, giving a preview of the campaign to come.


GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE, R-N.J., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If you're looking at somebody who's running for president of the United States, you need to wonder, will they really do what they say they're going to do?

RICK PERRY, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I tell people this is going to be a show me, don't tell me election. I mean, we've had six and a half years of a pretty good talker. A young, inexperienced United States senator that has gotten America in the ditch now.

GOV. SCOTT WALKER, R-WIS., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Last year alone, six of the top 10 wealthiest counties in America, you know where they were? In and around Washington, D.C.

SHAWN (voice-over): RedState editor-in-chief Erick Erickson wrote, "Republicans need to look to the future," saying, quote, "President Obama will, by the time he leaves office, have created a nation where, more than ever before, the people have turned on each other.

"The police have turned on the public and the public on the police, the military lacks confidence, the poor have given up, the government has failed at its basic tasks. The first task of any Republican presidential candidates must be to convince the American people that they, not government, control their destiny."

Senator Ted Cruz seized on that notion to make this blunt political prediction.

SEN. TED CRUZ, R-TEXAS, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Conservatives unite. We can turn this country around. RedState has been ground zero for the conservative movement. And if conservatives stand together, the primaries are effectively over.


SHAWN: More debates and appearances are slated in the coming weeks at the Americans for Prosperity Summit and the Family Leadership Regional Summit, for example. But you know, none will likely beat what the candidates can indulge in this coming week, starting Thursday at the Iowa State Fair.

Who can beat those fried Twinkies and fried peanut butter and jelly on a stick? By the way, that delicacy, Maria, is new for this summer.


BARTIROMO: Eric, thank you very much, Eric Shawn.

A campaign war chest can tell a lot of stories about each candidate and his or her campaign. Larry Sabato is here to crank them open and take a look inside. We'll share that next.

You can follow us on Twitter @MariaBartiromo, @SundayFutures. Let us know what you'd like to hear from Larry Sabato as he joins us next live and we look ahead this morning on "Sunday Morning Futures." Back in a moment.




BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

This weekend many GOP contenders are in Atlanta for the annual red state gathering following their explosive debates on Thursday night. Now they're trying to make headway before the next debate on September 16th, which will also rely on polls to determine the field.

Candidates also looking to rally donors to finance their campaigns.  On the Republican side, you can see the roll of PACs and super PACs, political action committees, compared to individual donations; whereas on the Democratic side only Hillary Clinton really has big financing from super PACs; while Bernie Sanders is not relying on them at all.

For more on what all of this means for the big picture and to take a look inside his crystal ball is Larry Sabato. He is the director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia.

And Larry, it's always wonderful to have you on the program. Welcome back.


BARTIROMO: So you have got new rankings of the GOP candidates by tier. Let's talk about that.

Who do you think are the leading candidates at this point post those two debates?

SABATO: Well, I'm actually leaving the top tier alone. It's Jeb Bush, Scott Walker and Marco Rubio, but I'm also watching John Kasich.

You know, if you look at that debate, the main debate, you see that John Kasich did very well and Marco Rubio did very well. I think they were the two big winners of the debate.

And then the other debate, you have to add Carly Fiorina, but she has yet to really gear up her fundraising and she has to get in one of the primetime debates. We'll see whether she can get in that second one in mid-September.

So debates ought to shuffle the tiers to a certain degree, and tentatively I would say it has. I also don't want to exclude Ted Cruz, because he also has a great deal of money and that's going to matter as we move into the actual caucuses and primaries.

BARTIROMO: Yes, let's talk about the money end of this because that's real important.

How important are these political action committees or what has become to be known as super PACs when you look at the fact that Jeb Bush has been able to raise $120 million or so around that and Hillary Clinton about almost $80 million.

How pivotal are these money-raising PACs?

SABATO: They're very important. Look, the first thing you need to know is there are virtually no rules anymore in campaign finance. There are paper rules but there's always a way around them and you can raise whatever you want, as much as you want from individuals, from groups.  There are ways to do it and they do it.

Now when we actually get to the run-up to Iowa and New Hampshire and South Carolina and Nevada, the critical first four states that occur in February, you're going to see how much these fundraising totals matter.

And there are candidates who have got to try and catch up to the leaders, like Bush and Cruz and Walker and Rubio. They've got to catch up.  That includes John Kasich. He had a great performance at the debate, but he's got to follow it up by raising a lot of money, and it's not easy.

BARTIROMO: Yes. So let's get back to that because you mentioned Carly Fiorina, she really knocked it out of the park in that first debate.  You also mentioned John Kasich, who obviously did very well in the second debate, as did Marco Rubio.

Someone had mentioned to me that the point of these debates, the early debates, is for voters to walk away from the debate and say, hmm, I want to know more about that person.

You think Carly Fiorina did that?

And do you think that means she'll be in the next big debate come September?

SABATO: Carly Fiorina was the headline from the first debate; her problem is only -- I say only 6 million people watched it. Actually, 6 million is an incredible total for any primary debate. It's just that 24 million watched the primetime debate, which is an all-time record. It shattered all records for primary debates.

So the good news for Carly Fiorina is she has been included in virtually every discussion that I've seen on TV about the debate. That's going to help her, but she's got to find, first of all, some financial angels to help her raise money.

She's got a small total right now, and, second, she has got to find ways to continue this momentum so she's in the headlines and she gets some additional points and public opinion polls because, once again, the second debate's participants are going to be determined by the public opinion rankings.

BARTIROMO: Right. Let me ask you, it's no surprise that John Kasich did so well. He's got a great record to stand on in Ohio. You also have a good record from Jeb Bush in Florida.

So, I mean, do you think the issues that are most important to voters are largely economic at this point?

The issue of wages did not come up. Wages haven't moved. The economy and jobs: no wonder Marco Rubio and Kasich did so well, given their backgrounds in terms of performance.

SABATO: There are two overriding issues for Republicans in the primary campaign. The first is the economy and all of its dimensions, including the lack of wage growth.

The second is national security and foreign policy, Maria. The more you talk to Republicans the more you see how concerned they are in that arena. The candidate who masters both in appeal to Republicans on the basis of the economy and national security is going to do very well.


How about Marco Rubio? He said he wants to change Dodd-Frank, repeal Dodd-Frank. That's going to play well with Wall Street and investors, right?

SABATO: Yes. And I'll be interested to see whether it improves his financial take, his campaign fundraising.

Now, he's done pretty well.


SABATO: But he's not in the same ballpark as Jeb Bush, for example.

BARTIROMO: Larry, good to have you on the program this morning.  Thanks so much.

SABATO: Thanks, Maria.

BARTIROMO: We'll see you soon. Larry Sabato there.

President Obama looking at the Iran nuclear deal as the crowning achievement of his foreign policy legacy. But will the flood gates of Democratic opposition now open up after two top Democratic lawmakers said they will not vote on it.

The impact on the deal's fate as we look ahead this morning on Sunday Morning Futures. That's next.


BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

A show of support for the Iran nuclear deal coming from the head of Iran's military. This man touting at least 16 advantages and lauding the fact that, quote, "regarding Iran's missile activities it doesn't order but only asks for Iran's compliance."

Meanwhile, it is a harder sell for the president right now who doubled down this week comparing Republicans who reject the deal in congress to those who chant, quote, death to America in Iran.

But the president may want to look at his own party where prominent Senator Chuck Schumer, the man expected to take over for Harry reid in the senate, and Congressman Elliott Engel saying they will vote no for this deal.

I want to bring in Edward Cox. He's chairman of the Republican Party of New York.

And Ed, it's always wonderful to have you on the program.


BARTIROMO: Let's get into the Iran deal right now. How important was it that Schumer and Engel said that they're going to vote no? What does this mean for the absolute fate of this arrangement?

COX: Maria, that's huge. It means essentially bipartisan opposition and not bipartisan support. President Nixon got his SALT agreements and Reagan got his agreements, they had bipartisan support. The country supported them.

With this deal, the country 2-1 is against the deal and now you have got Schumer against it. That doesn't bode well. Not just with respect to getting whether the deal is approved or not, but if the veto, the president which you would expect is upheld, it means that the next president of the United States, who I expect will be Republican, can renounce the deals.

BARTIROMO: Well, that's important because now it goes into the lap of the next president of the country. How is he or she going to reverse this?  Do you think with these no votes from Schumer and Engel that congress has a shot to actually change this fate?

COX: Well, first off, congress will probably reject the deals.

BARTIROMO: Then the president will veto.

COX: Will veto.

The odds are that his veto will be upheld, although that can be very close. But if the agreements are upheld, the president has made a tactical mistake in doing as agreements and not a treaty. As agreements, the next president of the United States can reject them and all the candidates are saying, we will reject it.


COX: And the same with ObamaCare. The way he did it.

Because there was not bipartisan support as FDR had bipartisan support for Social Security and the Great Society. President Johnson had bipartisan support so Medicaid/Medicare have continued.

He's making -- the president is making the mistake and drawing hard lines here and making it very partisan rather than looking for bipartisan support.

BARTIROMO: But observers have been saying, look, when you say, look, the snap back of sanctions in place, that doesn't happen overnight. It's going to be difficult regardless, right, for the new leader in charge?

COX: Let Schumer handle that and say that very questionable whether that will work. The snapback is not a snapback, and Schumer in his very detailed analysis, snapback doesn't work.

BARTIROMO: Were you surprised to see Schumer's reaction here? I mean, obviously he's not playing politics. He's following what...

COX: Well, he could be playing a little bit of politics, and that's a question here. To release it on Thursday night right in the middle of the debate. I remember sitting there watching the debates in the room, in the convention center and...

BARTIROMO: Getting that news on your phone.

COX: Now if he's whispering to others, look, I have to do this for political reasons, but then it's not going to make that. But he should be out there. If he really believes, as I think he does, that these agreements should not pass, then I think he should be out there campaigning with his fellow senators quietly the way you do in the senate and make sure they reject it also.

BARTIROMO: All right, let me get your take on the debates on the field right now from your fellow colleagues in the Republican Party. How do you think they are doing?

COX: Oh, I think they did very well -- 24 million -- big winner was Fox.


COX: My golly.

But what they saw was not just Trump, but they saw ten other or nine other really very good candidates, each one of them did very well from their point of view and their positions in the primary race now.

BARTIROMO: So the Republicans have some real momentum. How do you keep that momentum going?

COX: We have huge momentum. My golly. Last November, we won the governorships in the blue states of Illinois, Maryland and Massachusetts.  We now have 31 governorships. We have more legislative seats all across the country than we ever had. We won the United States Senate. We are on a roll.

Absent huge economic growth, 4 percent growth, one of those candidates on the stage is going to be the next president of the United States.

BARTIROMO: Yeah. And you know, certainly the good news is that they're sticking to the issues. We're talking about economic growth, about wages, about the Iran deal, about ISIS. This is what the American people want to hear.

COX: Oh, they were substantative back and forth. Christie and Iran, Paul with respect to national security versus that bill of rights. These are real debates.

BARTIROMO: How do you think the list changes in the second debate and the third debate?

COX: We'll have to see. Probably stays pretty -- I think Carly Fiorina gets into it because she did such a good job. I think the dynamics will change as we go on, some of the long distance runners will -- such as Walker and Bush, they will be -- they will be pushing a little bit more rather than just parrying, because they are in very good positions and they have great records as governors that they can stand on. They don't have to, quote, unquote, win the debate in order to win the primary process.

BARTIROMO: What about Hillary, thoughts on her campaign?

COX: Oh, my gosh, that -- Hillary is in a dreary death march at the moment and getting eclipsed by the Republican field.

BARTIROMO: Ed, it's good to have you on the show today.

COX: Always good to be with you.

BARTIROMO: We'll be watching the developments. Ed Cox, chairman of the Republican Party in New York.

17 Republicans vying for the job of U.S. president, but only one can win the party's nomination. Find out who separated themselves from the pack during that first primary debate, both debates on Thursday.

We're looking ahead this morning. Our panel is next on Sunday Morning Futures.


SHAWN: From America's News Headquarters, I'm Eric Shawn.

Here are some of the other stories that are making headlines at this hour.

Another firefighter has died while battling a wildfire in California. The U.S. Forest Service saying he was hit by a tree while working at a remote area near Lake Tahoe. A second fire was injured in that mishap. Cooler weather, though, is helping firefighters gain ground against what they call the Rocky Wildfire. They say it is now 70 percent contained.

The FBI this morning being asked to help investigate the police shooting of an unarmed black teenager in Texas by a white police officer. Police say he was shot during a burglary call at a car dealership in Arlington, Texas. Authorities say this surveillance video shows 19-year-old Christian Taylor, a college football player, kicking out a vehicle's windshield and trying to open a locked car door. Taylor, seen on the left, was, say authorizes, shot by Police Officer Brad Miller, who joined the force in September. The police say Taylor put up a struggle, there was an altercation. Miller has been put on routine administrative leave pending the investigation.

And I'll be back with Arthel Neville at noon eastern with more news. And, as always, the doctors are in, Dr. Siegel and Samadi join us two hours from now for "Sunday Housecall" at 12:30 Eastern.

So for now, I'm Eric Shawn. And back to "Sunday Morning Futures" and Maria.

MARIA BARTIROMO, FOX ANCHOR: Welcome back. Thank you, Eric.

Candidates back on the campaign trail this morning after the first pair of debates last week. All 17 candidates taking the stage on Thursday. But while some seem to shine, others appeared to get lost in the shuffle.

Want to bring in our panel to talk about the week's winners and losers. Ed Rollins is former principle White House adviser to President Reagan. He has been a long time strategist to business and political leaders and he's a Fox News political analyst. Judith Miller, adjunct fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. She is a Pulitzer Prize winning author and journalist and a Fox News contributor. And Alfonse D'Amato back with us, former New York senator.

Good to see you, senator. Thanks for joining us.


BARTIROMO: Good to see you Ed and Judy.


BARTIROMO: Observations from the two debates. What's your take away. Ed Rollins?

ROLLINS: First of all, I don't think anybody lost any ground. Usually debates reinforce your base. I was hoping by the time we got to this point in time we wouldn't be talking about Donald Trump, but we still are. Since June 16th he's been the dominant factor. I think he did not help himself any, though. And I think to a certain extent, you know, he - he has gone from - he's not on a - he's not on a reality show or he is on a real reality show. It's not a television reality show. Running for president is a tough game and you better have some substance.

He's kind of gone from the protest candidate, the figure in network, the Beetle candidate who said, I'm not going to take it anymore, to kind of an Archie Bunker character in a suit. He's insulting people. He basically is making derogatory comments. He's continuing to fight. And I -- he just does not look presidential to me.


JUDY MILLER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Of course, I was looking at the happy hour debate along with 6 million other Americans. I think clearly Fox News is kind of one of the big winners out of this.


MILLER: Not only the superb questions, but how many people tuned in, which really reverses our thinking that there were too many debates last time people wouldn't watch. But Carly Fiorina surprised everybody out of that. And, you know, it gave special attention, it highlighted that thin blue line of men in blue suits in the primetime debate.


MILLER: It's not just the Trump factor. It's the fact that there are no women there. And when you talk - a Ted Cruz talks about prosecuting Planned Parenthood, when Senator Rubio talks about forcing women to carry fetuses to full term after a rape or an insist, there's a woman's issue. Fifty-three percent of the electorate, guys, this is - you cannot ignore us.


MILLER: Eventually you're going to have to pay attention. She helped do that.

BARTIROMO: She really did.


BARTIROMO: And when she came on my show, "Mornings with Maria" on the Fox Business Network, she basically said, look, you know, Hillary can say lots of things, but I can say them, too.

MILLER: Right.

BARTIROMO: You know, I - I had children, yes. Been there, done that. I'm a grandmother. Been there, done that.

MILLER: Exactly.

BARTIROMO: I mean, I'm interested in women's issues, yes.


BARTIROMO: So it's a - a fresh look -

MILLER: A fresh look.

BARTIROMO: At the party. It really is.


BARTIROMO: Senator, what was your take away?

D'AMATO: I think that, number one, Bush did not credit himself as a front-runner and I think he was thought of as the front-runner, notwithstanding Donald's big lead. Donald, obviously, added to the attraction, because people wanted to see, could he stand up to this? And it was a great, I think, debate. Fox should be very proud. I mean, broke every kind of record, because people were - they were attracted to this battle. They were looking for the battle.


D'AMATO: And they got it. They got it.

I think -

BARTIROMO: Which is - which is why I thought it was a very clever question to begin the debate, you know, does anybody not want to commit to, you know, supporting whoever it is?

ROLLINS: Absolutely.

MILLER: Yes, absolutely.


BARTIROMO: And Donald Trump said, no, I'm not going to commit. I may go independent.

D'AMATO: I have to tell you, I think a couple of people distinguished themselves. I think a formerly little known governor who has done a superb job. Former Congress -

BARTIROMO: John Kasich?

D'AMATO: John Kasich from Ohio. This is the guy who demonstrated, I know the issues in terms of budget, in terms of defense, down in D.C. And, by the way, at home, look what I've done in Ohio.


D'AMATO: And the another thing is, if the Republicans are going to win, you must carry Ohio. Florida is another important part. So Republicans, wake up, do you want to win or do you want to have somebody who agrees with you on every single issue? And I'm talking about the social issues.


D'AMATO: Don't get trapped. If you want a winner, you take a look at Ohio and Florida and that's how you win.

ROLLINS: Senator Rubio was also excellent. He had great poise. He - he responded very well. He looked in the camera. He -- I thought he won the debate itself. I mean I - and I think - you know, and the other guy who did well was Senator Perry -- Governor Perry on the first debate.


ROLLINS: You know, the problem is, we've still got too many candidates. We've got five or six in there who really aren't going to make it. But we've probably got 10 that are going to continue because of the resource and the very excellent presentation you made on the super PACs and what have you. They're going to get to stay in this time.


ROLLINS: We used to be - get eliminated by Iowa and New Hampshire and what have you. you couldn't get the money. Now if the super PACs, they can stay in much longer and this race is going to go much longer.

BARTIROMO: It's true. And by the way, many of the real winners, like you mentioned, John Kasich, Marco Rubio, even, you know, Governor Perry, Jeb Bush -


BARTIROMO: They've got records, economic records -

ROLLINS: Absolutely.

BARTIROMO: To stand on, so we're really looking at issues that are driving, which is - which is nice because that's what we want.

Let's me get back to substance. We're going to continue this conversation.

First of all, let's look at "MediaBuzz," what's coming up at the top of the hour. Howard Kurtz standing by with what's on his show next.

Howard, good morning to you.

HOWARD KURTZ, HOST, "MEDIABUZZ": Good morning, Maria.

With enormous public interest in this debate -- and you could feel the intensity when I was in Cleveland -- we'll talk to three anchors who were on that stage, Megyn Kelly, Bret Baier, Chris Wallace as well as Bill Hemmer and Martha McCallum, who handled the first debate.

BARTIROMO: Love it. That's certainly who we want to hear from. We will see you at the top of the hour, Howie, we'll be there. Thank you.

Up next, though, from the panel, Hillary Clinton likely on the edge as Vice President Joe Biden relaxes on his week-long retreat in South Carolina and decides whether or not to enter this race for president. Our panel will talk about what the V.P.'s candidacy would mean for Clinton as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures." That's next.




BARTIROMO: Welcome back. We are now hearing there may be another contender to try to take on Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton. This one may decide soon whether he plans to make a move for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. That's Vice President Joe Biden and his wife are currently taking a week-long retreat in South Carolina.

Biden's aides have said they expect a decision on a presidential run once the couple returns from that vacation.

Bring back our panel, Ed Rollins, Judith Miller, Senator Alphonse D'Amato.

What do you think about this?

Will Joe Biden enter the race?

Senator, what do you think?

D'AMATO: I think it's a tossup, 50-50. I think that, as Hillary's problems grow, as it relates to the servers and her lawyer having the thumb drive -- I've never heard of anything like that, that a lawyer can have a thumb drive to classified information? This is --

BARTIROMO: Her personal lawyer.

D'AMATO: Yes, her personal lawyer, Mr. Kendall (ph). It's shocking.  I believe it crosses the lines. It is -- you know, Petraeus, they criminally prosecuted him for having classified information in his desk. I mean, this is shocking.

The rules are made for everybody but the Clintons. So I think that if there's a sense that this is growing, and I think it is, that Vice President Biden may very well get into this race.

BARTIROMO: The other thing is, it sounds like he's got the backing of President Obama, Judy.

MILLER: Well, I think that there is no love lost between the Clintons and the Obama White House.


MILLER: That's very clear.

However, I just don't see Joe Biden getting into this race.

BARTIROMO: Really? You don't think so?


MILLER: Unless Hillary's legal exposure grows as a result of the e- mails, but other than that, I don't see it. He has no money. He has no organization. You know, he's fairly old himself, vis-a-vis the other candidate, the front-running candidate, Hillary Clinton, and he didn't do well last time. So I don't see why he should do this.

BARTIROMO: Michael Crowley (ph) from The Washington Times is betting on it. She says there's no way Hillary is going to be the Democratic contender.

What do you think?

ROLLINS: I think she has a lot of problems. I think she's run a terrible campaign to date with all the advantages that she has. I think there are a lot of Democrats questioning whether she can make it all the way. I think the White House does not want her. I think the Biden stuff is not being discouraged by anybody in the White House. The president can walk him in and say, hey, we're not going to have a battle here. We want a third term. They want a third term but they don't want it to be Hillary Clinton.

So I think that they know what the FBI is looking at and what have you. So I think she's got a lot of problems ahead. I think Biden's going to go. I think even though he's never been a very good candidate, I think he's been dying to be president for a long period of time. He's been close to it for the last eight years. I think he would go.

BARTIROMO: That would certainly disrupt the party, right?


BARTIROMO: And it would divide the party.

ROLLINS: Absolutely. Absolutely.

MILLER: It would make Republicans look like Kumbaya.


ROLLINS: Well, it would make it all very interesting because we have a long process to go --



D'AMATO: I think there's a great deal of sympathy that the vice president has picked up with the loss of his son. It's kind of refocused attention to him.

BARTIROMO: And there was the commentary that Beau Biden wanted his father to run.

D'AMATO: Yes. And that's a fact. We happen to know that to be the case. I have a very close relationship with the Biden family. My sons do with his two boys, and his son wanted him to run. That was not a contrived story.

I think it would be tough. You have to go out and raise money and put together an organization, but I also think the splintering, and it continues to splinter, Hillary's credibility, it's no one believes her. I mean, her numbers are falling. And so that adds to this.

And Democrats are looking at this and saying, we're going to have a disaster on our hands. I think Carly Fiorina, she put some tough ones to her.

And what would Hillary be saying if Carly was on the ticket asking those questions? A woman can ask another woman questions that a man can't.


D'AMATO: All right?  So very interesting.

BARTIROMO: Great point, Senator.

MILLER: But if her legal exposure grows, then I think you're right, but barring that, I don't see how anyone at this stage can come in and really have the money, the organization and the support of the Democratic base that they need.

ROLLINS: The Democratic base is African Americans, which she has always done well with.


ROLLINS: -- up against Obama. It's women voters, which obviously still a lot of women want the first woman president. She's the only one who's going to be close to it for a long time. And labor unions. And so she -- and she has a tremendous fundraising base.

He will have real challenge but it will basically put the -- I just remember when we had a lot of challenges when Ronald Reagan gave up the third term and he sort of put his arm around George Bush, even though he didn't endorse him. And Bob Dole and Jack Kemp and a whole bunch of others got sort of washed out to sea. So my sense is that the White House does not want Hillary. They will do everything they can to help him.

BARTIROMO: All right. We have to get your take on Iran. We'll take a break. President Obama has his work cut out for him now on the Iran nuclear deal. Losing votes in his own party to get it approved. Our panel now breaks down that on Iran. Back in a minute.



BARTIROMO: Today marks 70 years since the atom bond was dropped on Nagasaki, leading to the end of World War II. Marking the solemn occasion, Japan's prime minister and the Pope calling for a world free of nuclear arms.

Meanwhile, President Obama is hard at work, on his vacation in Martha's Vineyard this weekend, to try and convince the American people and Congress that his deal with Iran will keep Tehran from getting a bomb of their own.

We'll bring back our panel, Ed, Judy and Senator D'Amato. The president just was talking about this, and, basically, he is talking about these barbs and tweets from the Supreme Leader in Iran, saying that this is not going to threaten this deal. "Superpowers do not respond to taunts," Obama said in an interview this morning.

Senator, what do you think?


D'AMATO: I think the president is totally lost. He has no idea what he did to this country. First of all, by putting this proposed deal before the U.N., he has effectively ended the sanctions. And he knew that the U.N. was going to approve this.

Number two, you give to a regime that is out to destroy Israel and the United States $50 billion. You give them the ability to bring in intercontinental ballistic missiles.

BARTIROMO: Which is why Schumer voted no. Are you happy about that?

D'AMATO: Kudos to Senator Chuck Schumer for standing up, doing the right thing. And he did. I'm very proud of him. And I'm pleasantly, pleasantly surprised because, you know, he wants to be the leader of the party in the Senate, Senate majority leader or minority leader, and I'm sure there was a great deal of pressure.

BARTIROMO: I'm sure there was pressure. Is he pressuring others this weekend, or during this August recess, in terms of getting their vote?

ROLLINS: I think the mere fact the document he put out with his arguments were arguments we've made at this table in the past, and they're very strong arguments. It's not about the bomb itself. It's about the ability of them to take this money and continue the Hezbollah and all this bad stuff.

And I think it was very, very effective, and I think it's going to have some impact. But I think, at the end of the day, this bill is going to be defeated in both the House and the Senate. I don't think there's enough votes for override it -- there will be enough votes to override it. I think that's the big issue.

But I think the president has gone to war with the Republicans. He's basically tainted them, saying they're the same as the Ayatollah. The fact he's talking about the superpower here shows that he doesn't know how to lead a superpower.


ROLLINS: The taunts are real. When some other superpower says to you, you know, "You're a bad guy; you're a bunch of weak people," and his argument's "We do this or we go to war" is absolutely absurd and -- and a lack of integrity as far as an argument's...


BARTIROMO: So this lands on the new president's desk and he'll have to deal with it, Judy. You've studied Iran so much. You want to get back there, but you can't get a visa anymore...

MILLER: No, no.

BARTIROMO: ... because of all of the work you've done.

MILLER: Right, on WMD, on their biological weapons program, which everyone has forgotten about. They still have an active program, U.S. intelligence believes. However, when it comes to this deal, I know I'm going to part company with my fellow panelists here and with many on this network in saying that I've leaned towards the deal, given what we know now. But the president has not done those of us who are inclined to support this deal any favors through his speech by comparing those who oppose it to the Ayatollah, by comparing them to our enemies. He has pushed away people who should be allies.

BARTIROMO: All right. We're going to have the one thing to watch in the next week with our panel, next. Back in a minute.


BARTIROMO: Back with our panel with the one big thing to watch in the week ahead. Ed Rollins?

ROLLINS: I'm waiting for the first polls to come out and I want to see if political -- Donald Trump's political correctness versus decency and common courtesy is going to drop him in the polls, because he's...

BARTIROMO: That's a really good way to put it, "decency and common courtesy." That's what it's about.

ROLLINS: He keeps arguing about political correctness. There's another side of this thing and that's...


MILLER: I'm looking at Jason Rezaian, the Washington Post reporter who has been held in Iran, to see whether or not -- the last day of his trial scheduled is tomorrow, is Monday -- I want to see whether or not the Ayatollah has the good sense to end this farce and free this man.

BARTIROMO: Real quick, Senator, what are you watching?

D'AMATO: Congressional Republicans going after David Kendall to see why does a lawyer have a thumb drive with all of this sensitive information?

BARTIROMO: From Hillary Clinton.

D'AMATO: Classified information.

BARTIROMO: There you go. And I'm watching retail sales and CISCO earnings. Have a great week, everybody. I'll see you on "Mornings With Maria."

Content and Programming Copyright 2015 Fox News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2015 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.