White House to hold summit to fight violent extremism

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," January 12, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

STUART VARNEY, GUEST HOST: The White House announcing a summit to fight what it's calling violent extremism.

To former Republican Senator Scott Brown, who says that won't stop ISIS.

Senator, it's February the 18th, so it's not until next month. And they don't mention the words Islamic terror. What do you think is going to be the result of this conference next month?

SCOTT BROWN, R-FORMER U.S. SENATOR: Well, I don't think we need a conference to coddle and hug people.

We need to not only weapons, strategy and leadership to actually stop, hurt and kill the Islamic terrorists, the people that are trying to change our way of life, trying to hurt and kill not only people in France, but throughout the world.

There's a lack of strategy. There's a lack of leadership. Right now, as you remember, Stuart, the president drew a red line. Remember that red line? If you cross it, you're in big trouble. Well, guess what? They crossed it all -- every which way, and he did nothing.

And it sent a message is has reverberated and continues to do it, not only with Putin, but with a whole host of other issues throughout the world. And it's coming home to roost.

VARNEY: At this conference next month -- that's three weeks away -- it's not happening now -- it's three weeks away -- at this conference, there are going to educators, mental health workers...

BROWN: Great.

VARNEY: ... religious leaders, and social workers.

BROWN: Amen.

VARNEY: But...


BROWN: That's great.

VARNEY: ... that would seem like an attempt to understand terror, as opposed to killing it.

BROWN: How about bringing Homeland Security? How about bringing our military experts or CIA, FBI and all of the world leaders and their teams to a conference to actually figure out what is going to be the worldwide strategy for people of -- of -- who believe in freedom and democracy or free speech and -- and rights of individuals?

How about bringing them together? How about the president leading that conference?

VARNEY: But does he see -- does the president see this as a military threat, as a threat that has to be responded to with force, or does he see it as a crime, terrorism as a crime, which is -- has to be dealt with, with lawyers and courts and rules of evidence?

BROWN: Well, I think we see a little bit of both, actually.

He has made some efforts, obviously. He is bombing. He is doing strategic bombing. He's making efforts. But, on the other hand, he's providing them with rights that I personally don't believe that they're entitled to he's extending not only in Gitmo, but in other areas.

When we capture people, they're given rights. They should be interrogated, pursuant to the applicable laws in our country, to find out what is next. And they are, I believe, providing them rights that they're not entitled to.

VARNEY: But isn't the president running a huge political risk and a security risk as well? If we get hit in America, and he has had a relatively soft approach to stopping terrorism in America, he pays a huge political price.

BROWN: Well, I -- I pray every night that that doesn't happen.

VARNEY: Of course. Of course, we all do, yes.

BROWN: And it's not -- and it's not about the president and his political price.


BROWN: It's about the American citizens in our country and -- and where we stand in the world, if in fact that happens.

VARNEY: But the president must be aware of this.

BROWN: Listen, I think he has checked out on a whole host of things. He's using his pen and his phone to use executive orders on a whole range of issues.

I pray every night, Stuart, and I talk to folks and I say, where is his head at? Has he checked out on this as well? And we will soon find out.

VARNEY: I have to ask you one last question. Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush, do you think they're both going to run? And where do you stand?

BROWN: Well, met both of them.

I was at a lunch with Jeb, spoke with him directly, sat at the same table, right where we are here. And I was at -- with Mitt at the inauguration for Charlie Baker.


BROWN: And he called me the night after.

And I encouraged Mitt to run. And I -- I think it's a little too early in the process. But Mitt was right on Russia. He was right on ObamaCare. He would have been -- he's right on the economy.

VARNEY: As a Republican, you want him to run?

BROWN: Absolutely. I think it would be an asset, certainly.

VARNEY: You favor Romney over Mitt -- Jeb Bush?

BROWN: Listen, I know Governor Romney. I trust Governor Romney. And I'm going to wait for him to make that decision and then I will figure out.

But until then, what I'm going to continue to do is bring people to New Hampshire, let them meet the activists and people who are going to vote, first-in-the-nation primary state. Whether it's Ted or Rand or Paul Ryan, whomever it is, I'm happy to facilitate. That's what we have been doing. That's what I'm going to continue to do.

VARNEY: Former Senator Scott Brown, thanks very much for being with but, sir.

BROWN: Thanks, Stuart. Great to see you.

VARNEY: Appreciate it.

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