Romney mega-donor backs Rubio

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," November 24, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: All right. He's a billionaire with considerable influence. And if you want to parlay any shot at getting to the White House, he's a friend you want to make.

And, believe me, all the leading Republican presidential candidates have been trying to make this fellow their friend, their buddy.

Frank VanderSloot, he was very instrumental in making Mitt Romney the Republican nominee and almost getting him over the top. This time, he's set his sights on one Marco Rubio.

Why Rubio?

FRANK VANDERSLOOT, CEO, MELALEUCA: Well, I think Marco Rubio has a tremendous advantage over the other candidates.

He's not only really, really bright, but he's a student of the issues, both domestically and in foreign relations.

CAVUTO: He's a very good debater.

VANDERSLOOT: He's a great debater.

And his approach is one that he's a friendly debater. He lays out his facts in a way, so he invites those who disagree with him to see it the way he sees it, or at least analyze his way of getting to his position, and buy into his position and get on board with it.

And I think that that is particularly to his advantage and to our country's advantage, to the American people's advantage, when you're talking about the future president of the United States or a candidate.

CAVUTO: He's very simple and clear.

I remember, when we did the Fox Business debate, and researching the time the candidates had been given in the prior debates, he actually gets in the lower half of time on stage when think of it. That might surprise people, but it's what he makes of that time.


He says more in less time than any of the other candidates. And he knows his material. It's not like he's...


CAVUTO: But what brought you to him? Obviously, all the candidates wanted your support.

I mean, it was Jeb Bush, and there's Ted Cruz. There's John Kasich.  You could make an argument Chris Christie. I'm sure they all knocked on your door. What closed the deal for Rubio?

VANDERSLOOT: Well, we thought we ought to answer two questions before we could get behind anyone in particular.

And that is, who would make the best president? And, number two, who would be the most electable? And we entered into those questions. We took a long time answering those questions vetting these candidates, but we thought we might end up with two different answers, two different people.  In the end, we were fortunate we ended up with the same candidate.

CAVUTO: I'm told the other one you liked was Carly Fiorina.

VANDERSLOOT: I liked Carly Fiorina, and to the degree that I think she would have been a great president.

I think she had a good grasp of domestic and international affairs, but she -- her message, she didn't maybe have the friendly factor, the likability...


CAVUTO: It is interesting, right? A great debater. Couldn't carry it over on the campaign trail.

VANDERSLOOT: She had her facts right.

CAVUTO: Yes. Yes.

VANDERSLOOT: Marco Rubio has a tremendous advantage over all the candidates, including Carly, I believe, in that he can articulate his reasoning and his position in a way that invites people to get on board.

CAVUTO: You hope, right?

Now, Donald Trump, hearing this -- and it hasn't happened yet -- I haven't heard -- been following what he's been saying today -- I'm sure he's going to say, with someone like you behind Rubio, Rubio is bought and paid for. And Donald Trump, no one has to buy him. No one has to have undo influence over him.

You say what?

VANDERSLOOT: Well, Donald is going to say what he is going to say.  He's going to say whatever he believes is going to be to his advantage to get elected. I think he's got a good track record of that.



CAVUTO: Well, he's leading in all the polls.

VANDERSLOOT: He's a great marketer. I like his sound bites. I might even like...

CAVUTO: But there might be something to that, right? If you have so much money -- like a guy I like you. You don't need to get money from other people. Right?

So if you have that kind of money, there's a term for that, but I won't repeat it here. And that's what Donald Trump feels that he has that a Marco Rubio would not.

VANDERSLOOT: Right. Well, Rubio doesn't have a history of using his position in politics to his own financial advantage.

I think the fact that, you know, he -- I think he has the least the -- the lowest net assets of all of the candidates.

CAVUTO: So you weren't troubled by -- remember the dust-up over his finances and bills and everything else?

VANDERSLOOT: I think he's done particularly well for himself, given where he started out. And I don't recall exactly what his net worth is, but it's, you know, a few hundred thousand dollars. He's 44 years old. He clearly didn't use his position in politics to line his own pockets.

VANDERSLOOT: So he didn't ask and you didn't ask anything of him?


VANDERSLOOT: Of course not. Of course not.

I personally think it would be wrong to do. I think that if you had any smarts, you wouldn't do that. I just want a good president.

CAVUTO: Why are you committing, when other big money guys like Sheldon Adelson and the Koch brothers are not? They are really keeping their powder dry. And I don't understand why they are doing so for so long.

VANDERSLOOT: Well, I have many friends who are waiting out to see who kind of gets the lead before they decide who they're going to cheer for.

CAVUTO: So they want to go through a few primaries?

VANDERSLOOT: They do. And some of them do.

CAVUTO: So, no one is committing money prior to the caucuses or...

VANDERSLOOT: I think some are. Some are.

I think it's particularly dangerous to wait to see who is going to win the game before you start cheering. I think you start cheering when you can still impact the outcome, especially the fact that we have had several cases now, several past elections, where the Republicans have had a nominee that just couldn't win the general election.

I think that that should be a sign to us that we should...


CAVUTO: They have been very good at grabbing defeat from the jaws of victory.

Let me ask you. We were chatting very briefly. You were targeted by the IRS again and again and again, exonerated again and again and again.  And now the whole investigation there, it's over, done, no there there.  How do you feel about it?

VANDERSLOOT: Well, I think it was particularly interesting and perhaps egregious that President Obama...

CAVUTO: What happened to you?


VANDERSLOOT: He put me on his list of eight -- his -- what the Wall Street called his enemies list.

I was particularly perturbed that he put me last on the list. But, nevertheless, I was number eight on his list. And I wondered at the time whether that meant that his agencies were going to come after me personally or whether a target has now been painted on my back.

CAVUTO: Were you audited?


CAVUTO: You were audited then.

VANDERSLOOT: I was audited, yes.

CAVUTO: A number...



VANDERSLOOT: ... four audits within the next just few weeks. The first audit came within three weeks.

CAVUTO: And you were completely exonerated, in the clear, nothing was wrong.


No, we..


CAVUTO: But no one reprimanded the IRS. The IRS got away with all of that.

VANDERSLOOT: We had to wait for two years to get our refund from the IRS. But, no, the audits went through. They were tedious. They were deep. But we didn't owe the IRS a single penny.

CAVUTO: That's a pretty big deal. You think about that. That's using the weight and resources and power of the greatest and most feared tax authority on the planet to go after an individual and they got off with it. They got away with it.

VANDERSLOOT: Well, we weren't afraid of an audit, but it's a tedious thing to go through.


CAVUTO: But my only point is, you survived. My only point is that, man oh, man, they got away with it. The IRS got away with it. Nothing is going to happen to Lois Lerner and nothing is going to happen to any of these guys.

VANDERSLOOT: That is interesting, isn't it, that our nation has digressed to that point, where now no one trusts the federal government.  That's changed a lot in my lifetime, I think in your lifetime.

People don't trust the federal government anymore.

CAVUTO: Do you think, if Marco Rubio became President Rubio, that he should he pursue the IRS, not for you, but to say, thank cannot do this?

VANDERSLOOT: He surely shouldn't it for my sake, but I think that you -- you send a message the all of the agencies that you make the appointments of those agencies.

And I think that you -- we need a president that is not vindictive, is not going to punish his enemies, because we're all Americans. We're not the enemy. I think that it was Hillary Clinton who said that the enemy are the Republicans.

Well, we're Americans. We cannot be the enemy. Reach out to all Americans. If you're the president and if Marco Rubio becomes president, I know that he will.


CAVUTO: They all speak about how we're going to kumbaya. It never works like that.


VANDERSLOOT: Well, I'll tell you what. If somebody actually reached out, I think it would work well.  CAVUTO: All right.  VANDERSLOOT: The problem is, they say they are going to reach out, and then they don't.

CAVUTO: Then they don't do it.

VANDERSLOOT: I think Marco Rubio will.

I think he has already. And I think that will become apparent in the campaign. People will join Marco Rubio's campaign because of he's analyzed the facts. He has looked into the situations. He knows what he's talking about. He will articulate his arguments...


CAVUTO: OK. But if Donald Trump became the nominee, you would support him too? Boy, your face turned ashen.


VANDERSLOOT: That would be scary, wouldn't it? In my opinion...


CAVUTO: I don't know. You don't think that's going to happen.

VANDERSLOOT: I surely hope it doesn't happen.


VANDERSLOOT: I do not believe that this nation will get behind Donald Trump. I think the polls indicate that now and I think they will continue to indicate that. I do not believe that...

CAVUTO: Well, he does well in the polls. They're all roughly...

VANDERSLOOT: He's doing well in the polls now, but we're a long ways from...


CAVUTO: Understood.

VANDERSLOOT: And I think that that will die off.

CAVUTO: All right, Frank, very good seeing, Frank VanderSloot.

We shall see. The race is on, though, for guys like that. All right.

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