Horizon, Host: Ted Simons

April 2, 2007


Host: Jay Lawrence

senator Jon Kyl


  • senator Jon Kyl talks about foreign policy and the current U.S. attorney controversy.
Guests:
  • Jon Kyl - U.S. Senator
  • Terry McAuliffe - Former Democratic National Committee chair


View Transcript
Jay Lawrence:
Tonight on "Horizon", Senator Jon Kyl joins us to talk about the conflict in the Middle East, and the fallout over the US Attorney General's handling of the US Attorney firings. And a conversation with the former Democratic National Committee chair, Terry McAuliffe. He's written a book about his life as a fundraiser. Next on "Horizon".

Announcer:
"Horizon" is made possible by contributions from the Friends of Eight, members of your Arizona PBS station. Thank you.

Jay Lawrence:
Good evening. Thanks for joining us tonight on "Horizon". I'm Jay Lawrence. U.S. Senator and presidential candidate John McCain is currently in Iraq to see the progress of the U.S. Iraqi security crackdown in Baghdad. Congress is at recess, which allows Arizona's other senator, Jon Kyl, to join us tonight. Senator Kyl, of course, visited Iraq in February. What was that like, Senator? Welcome. I'm glad you're here.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, thanks very much. I'd rather be here than Iraq. But it was an interesting visit because the so-called surge had just begun about three weeks before that. Our first brigade was already in country. The second one was preparing to move in. And both the Iraqis and our commanders on the ground were already seeing some positive signs of success. Signs that Senator McCain has confirmed continue up to this time.

Jay Lawrence:
You know, it's amazing watching Senator McCain walk around seemingly unfettered. We know there are a lot of guards around, but it sure looks better than what we've seen in the past.

Senator Jon Kyl:
And it is. Now granted, you're wearing the bulletproof vest and so on. But that's precautionary. Listen. There will be bad days and good days. But our commanders have noted progress particularly in places like Sadr City. We were able to go in there without a shot being fired. The difference between now and what happened the last couple years is: when they go in and clear an area in the past, we would leave and the bad guys would just filter right back in. Now, we are leaving behind both American and Iraqi units to hold the area, to maintain the stability. And if that can continue now for several months, people of Iraq will gradually see a stability that will enable them to believe in their government. And that will be the beginning of the political compromise that have to be made for long-term stability.

Jay Lawrence:
You know, it's interesting. John McCain said that the media really isn't reporting all of the good news that's going on in Iraq. Do you feel that way, sir?

Senator Jon Kyl:
I do. There is a lot good. But it's like the Evening News. Do you see all kinds of acts of charity and so on on the evening news though? No. They say if it bleeds, it leads. It's a fire. It's a police chase. It's something of that sort. Because it's exciting and visual. And unfortunately, that's the way war is. It's hard to cover the schools that are built, the roads that are repaired, and so on. This is not to take away from the violence. But there is a lot of good that's occurring there. And people who spend a lot of time there see that. And that, again, is why the people with whom we talked were cautiously optimistic that this new surge strategy can work.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator, the House and Senate both voted to continue funding the war in Iraq, but they named a date specific for the end of it. Your thoughts on that, sir.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, that's the one thing that will defeat us. We're not going to lose on the battlefield, but we could lose here at home. I think this is the first time in the history of warfare, at least that I know of, where a country, in the middle of the war, gives a date for quitting and says, as of a certain date, we'll begin withdrawing our troops. That's 120-days from the time the bill would be signed. And then by a certain date, roughly a year from now, we'll be gone. Now, that is not only fundamentally wrong and destructive as a policy, but think about the message it sends to our allies there, to the Iraqis that have sacrificed, to our own troops. And think about the message it sends to the enemy: just wait us out. You cannot win a war with that kind of a strategy. Unfortunately, the Democrats know that President will have to veto the bill with the poison pill in it. So all of this takes a lot of time. The troops need the money by April 15th. And the bill won't even get to the president, I think, until the 16th of April. So we're looking at May, and perhaps, even June before the veto is sustained, they rewrite the bill, we pass it again, send it back to him again, and the money flows to the troops. And that's assuming that they cooperate the second time around. I hope this isn't a "slow bleed strategy" to pretend like they're funding the troops by passing a bill, knowing all along that president can't sign it.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator, what has to fall into place in order for the troops to begin leaving Iraq? What things must happen?

Senator Jon Kyl:
I think that there are two key things. There has to be a prolonged period of relative stability, so that we know that Iraqi army and police can actually maintain the peace when we leave. And secondly, we have asked the Iraqi Government to do several things they've got to do. They've got to have a political reconciliation; they're going to pass a law that distributes the oil revenues to all the people in the country. And they need to do some other things, too. They call it the "De-Baathification", to ensure the people that were in the prior Saddam Hussein government are not going to be punished if they weren't the top dogs, the people making the key decisions. Just because you were part of the Baathist Party, won't preclude you from being in the new government, for example. If they make those political compromises, and you have relative stability, then I think we'll be able to leave.

Jay Lawrence:
Is there any reason to divide the country? Kurds, Shia, Sunni, give them their own sections, divide the oil equally among them? Is there anything to that, sir?

Senator Jon Kyl:
That's not our decision. It's their country. They've got a constitution. They've elected a government. They can do that, but they're not going to do it. They've already cross that bridge, I think. What I think they will do is perhaps either amend their constitution, or pass some laws within the current constitution that creates a little more autonomy to the southern region and to the Kurdish areas, but will distribute their oil revenue roughly equally in the three different parts of the country. But I think they've already made the decision, they're not going to divide their country into three pieces.

Jay Lawrence:
Al-Sistani, a Shia cleric, rejected an American proposal to allow thousands of Baath Party members to return to government service. Will that succeed?

Semator Jon Kyl:
Well, that's that "De-Baathification" Law I said. It's controversial in the country. I think that the -- Sistani is a Shia cleric. He's been relatively moderate. He's cautioned against the use of force, for example. But he doesn't want the same people that supported Saddam Hussein back in power, and you can't blame him. I think, however, there have to be some compromises. And as long as the majority of the Shia understand that the Sunni are not going to come back in and control the government, there ought to be a way that some of them, the ones that weren't responsible for Saddam Hussein's policies, to at least hold office or to be a part of the body politic in the country. That's something that they all have to work out, though.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator Kyl, any conversation that we have must certainly include our problems with Ahmadinejad and Iran. They've captured 15 British service personnel. What's going on?

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, this is another example of irresponsible Iranian behavior. Look at all the things that they've done. Look at the hostage crisis where 100 -- I've forgotten exactly how many Americans they were holding, but 444 days in captivity? This is the second time Brits have been taken captive. The Iranians love to provoke. And then I suspect what they're trying to get out of this, though who knows for sure, is a commitment by the Brits not to take certain actions, perhaps sanctions or other kinds of action against the Iranians, in return for getting their people back. They're clearly using the hostages as pawns in their larger game with the West. One hopes that our European allies would be awakened by this reality and be willing to support US efforts to apply stronger sanctions against the Iranian Government, as we've tried to accomplish in the United Nations over the last several months. We'll see if that happens, however.

Jay Lawrence:
They're a nuclear threat. How should we be dealing with that? They must -- We should be frightened. We should be concerned.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Absolutely. Ahmadinejad says he'd like to erase Israel from the face of the Earth, and talks about declaring war on everybody that doesn't agree with him. If he has a nuclear weapon, he's going to be extraordinarily difficult to deal with, which is why you'd want to stop that from happening. This is we've gone to the United Nations, we've asked our European Allies to join us in applying Diplomatic Sanctions to that country, as well as other measures to bring Iran to the table so they can appreciate that they don't need the nuclear weapon to preserve their integrity as a country, and that if they try to pursue it, they're going to be a Pariah Nation. They're already the world's largest state sponsor of terrorism. If we're not able to get our European Allies and others, the Chinese and Russians to cooperate with us, then eventually, the option that no one wants to resort, to the option of force, is all that's left on the table. I would rather urge our European friends, and Chinese, and Russians to join us in the diplomatic efforts to bring Iran around rather than having to resort to force.

Jay Lawrence:
So many subjects, so little time. The Attorneys General. The Attorney General and his handling of the US attorney firings. You have spoken out against that.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, I called it ham-fisted. He had the right to do what he did. The President can terminate any of the US Attorneys at any time, even without cause. But this was done in an extraordinarily poor way. And the explanations that followed invited criticism from me and others whose integrity was brought into play when they said that they were terminated for "performance reasons". Now, Paul Charlton was the US Attorney here in Arizona--

Jay Lawrence:
Indeed.

Senator Jon Kyl:
-- And he was asked to leave. Paul Charlton was not relieved for "performance reasons". He performed extraordinarily well. He was asked to leave because he had policy disagreements with the Administration on a couple of key issues. He wanted to do it his way, they wanted him to do it a different way. They have the right to ask him to do it their way and they have the right to remove him. But once they said they released him for "performance reasons", he had to stand up and say, "Wait a minute," and I had to defend him because I knew that wasn't the case. And this is why there is such consternation about the way it was handled. But did they have the right to do it? Yes, there's no question about that.

Jay Lawrence:
Can the Attorney General keep his job?

Senator Jon Kyl:
I think if he explains a lot of the inconsistencies when he testifies. By the way, he'd like to testify as soon as possible. The Democrats in the Senate are hoping to play this thing out over time. They've not invited him to testify, I think, until April 17. We really ought to get this behind us. Have him come, tell us what he knows. And if the President still has confidence in him, he stays. Obviously, if he doesn't, he goes.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator, you and the Republicans have been in power for a long time in the--since '94 in the US Senate and the House. Suddenly, you're the minority. What is the dynamic there? Do you feel it? Are the Democrats vengeful, saying "you got us then, we'll get you now"?

Senator Jon Kyl:
well, we had -- we were in the minority for about a year when Jim Jeffords, you remember, switched over to the other side. I served in the minority in the House of Representatives for eight years, so I know what it's like. Somebody quipped -- and there's a little bit of truth to this -- that the Democrats are still acting like they're in the minority, and the Republicans are still acting like they're in the majority. Now, what do they mean by that? The Democrats were lean and hungry to take the majority back. And to some extent, they're still acting in a very aggressive political way, which is what you do when you're in the minority. Republicans got too fat and happy, frankly, and didn't do the things that the American people wanted us to do to stay in power. And so they changed the majority. And I'm afraid to say that in some respects, Republicans have not yet learned that they're in the minority now. And we're going to have to work together, instead of each going in their own direction. When you're in the minority, if you don't stick together you never get to be back in the majority again. So to some extent, we've got to get our act together. I think we're beginning to do that in the Senate. I really can't speak too much to it in the House. But in the Senate, I think we've recognized what we have to do. And unfortunately, already the Democrats have begun to sort of revert to form and overreach, like the Emergency War Supplemental, in which instead of just getting the money to the troops, they're trying to score some political points. I don't think that's something the American people appreciate.

Jay Lawrence:
A few minutes left. Very short time. Politics. Right now, Senator McCain is behind Rudy Giuliani. Where do you see this election? What do you see happening? You've been watching politics for a long time, sir.

Senator Jon Kyl:
And for that reason, I say, who knows? I mean, there's an eternity before the Primary -- most of the Primaries next spring. And money is a part of that. The candidates are now disclosing how much money they raised in the first quarter. And those that did a lot are bragging. The others are saying, "Oh, that's just now, you know, we'll do much better later". Jay, it is so early to tell. And in the case of John McCain, for example, you mentioned, people are concerned about the war right now. And to some extent, he is identified with a more aggressive stance in the war. But if this "Betrayist Plan" -- the so-called surge is successful, John McCain could end up looking pretty good here. In any event, he's a man who stuck with his principle, even though it hurt him politically. I think people can appreciate that that about a candidate as well.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator Jon Kyl, America and the State of Arizona, well served, sir, by your presence in the US Senate. We appreciate time that you've spent here with us.

Jay Lawrence:
Good to have you at this table.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Thank you, sir.

Jay Lawrence:
Terry McAuliffe is the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee. During his tenure, he became one of the most successful fundraisers in political history. McAuliffe's book, "What a Party!" describes his life as a fundraiser, and a friend of politicians. Larry Lemmons spoke with McAuliffe recently at the Hyatt, about his current position.

Larry Lemmons:
You're Senator Hillary Clinton's campaign manager.

Terry McAuliffe:
The chairman.

Larry Lemmons:
Oh, OK, the chairman.

Terry McAuliffe:
The manager gets paid, I don't.

Larry Lemmons:
What's the difference?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, the chairman is sort the big overall, you know, chief cheerleader.

Larry Lemmons:
OK, so what's the strategy?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, we're doing great. I mean, today, Hillary's ahead in every single poll. We just got into the thing about five weeks ago. It's going to to go fast. Unfortunately, all these big states have moved up to February 5. In 11 months, we'll have a nominee to the Democrat and Republican Party. So our strategy is that Hillary continue to put her vision out there, let people get to know Hillary. People know she's strong, she's tough, she's principled, experienced. But a lot of people just don't know who she is. And she's been defined through the filter of the Right Wing and all that. Which is fine. But now it's her turn to tell her story, and that's what we're doing.

Larry Lemmons:
What's Senator Clinton's strategy for Barack Obama?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, we're going to win, of course, but I think it's exciting that Barack is in. I said this from day one. I think he's gonna excite and bring a lot of new people into the party as a strategist. We need to beat someone in the primary, I think, in order to make us strong for the general election to go through a vigorous primary. It's good for us, and good for all candidates. I think having Barack and the others, John Edwards and Bill Richardson out there, talking to people, getting them excited, only helps us in the General Election.

Larry Lemmons:
How will she fare against whomever the Republicans choose? John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, listen. I have tremendous personal respect for John McCain. This is a man who was a Prisoner of War for five years. I just don't happen to agree, and I think most Americans don't agree politically where he is, and where he's been on the issues. He's been a big supporter of George Bush on the [troop] surge, and that's just not where America is. So, Hillary's Campaign will be to lay out her positive vision where she wants to take the country on healthcare, education, dealing with the Iraq War. And we're not going to respond to anyone else. We're going to run our campaign. I'm hoping we're going to have the most exciting, uplifting, positive campaign you've ever seen. However, I will put everyone on notice, that if you go after Hillary unfairly, and you lie about her, we will respond immediately. We are not going to let them swift boat Hillary Clinton, we're not gonna let them do to her what they did to Al Gore and to John Kerry. We're gonna respond, we're gonna fight back. Because we owe it to the people who count on us to fight for them, those that have no voice in politics.

Larry Lemmons:
you have an anecdote in your book, it was kind of funny, from the 2004 campaign. You and John McCain were in an elevator and he whispered in your ear, and I am paraphrasing, something to the effect of "my guy is not that great, but your guy is a wimp."

Terry McAuliffe:
Right. I actually did Senator McCain a favor. I actually cleaned up what he said. [laughs] I did him a favor. Two guys on an escalator going up. His point was, he was not a big fan of George Bush, but he just was shocked that John Kerry, who had fought and volunteered twice to go to Vietnam against bush, who was AWOL. And John wasn't respondent, and John McCain couldn't figure out how that could possibly be. And I happened to agree with John McCain on that issue.

Larry Lemmons:
Let's go back to the 2000 election. You were saying in your book that Republicans do what it takes to win. During Florida, they sent James Baker down and the Democrats sent down Warren Christopher, who might be a nice guy, but he didn't have that same kind of fight.

Terry McAuliffe:
That's right, no match. In fact, Warren Christopher, I subsequently found, only visited Florida once. We were fighting for the Presidency. We won that election. They were stealing the election, and we let them do it. I mean, not going to sit here and argue with the Republicans. They fought harder. Shame on us. And that was my point. My point of the book is, it's not about Kerry or Clinton or anybody. When you're running for President, first of all, the public likes to see you get knocked down. They also want to see if you get back up, dust yourself off, and get into the arena again. Because you're fighting for people who have no voice. And we should have responded immediately in the Swift Boat and everything else. It was just a shame. Same thing in Florida in 2000. We should have fought harder.

Larry Lemmons:
Some Democrats have said that Kerry and Edwards gave up too quickly in Ohio.

Terry McAuliffe:
Yeah, and John really looked at that the next morning. And his people on the ground in Ohio told him that "I don't care how many of the absentees, there just wasn't enough difference." I think Bush won by a couple million votes overall. However, out of 5.8 million votes cast in Ohio, he only won by 119,000 votes. If we shifted 60,000 votes, John would be in the White House. That's it. So why did you have $50 million in the bank at the end of the campaign? Should have used it in Ohio.

Larry Lemmons:
Well, given the close election then in the last two cycles, what would be Senator Clinton's strategy should the same situation arise?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, we actually got a half million more votes than George Bush did and Al Gore did in the first one. In the second one, let's be honest, it was all fought in a post 9/11 world. And now, the whole issue of terror -- and listen, they use the color code system, remember they change it every other day. I don't know what color we are today, it might be Taupe, I don't know what we are today. But they clearly don't use it the way you used to use it during the campaign. And it's a different world today because now Americans think that the Democrats, not the Republicans, will do a better job of fighting terror. So the whole world has shifted. So clearly, it's our advantage. Now we got to be smart. We got to work hard. We got to be tough. We got to be responsive.

Larry Lemmons:
In your book, it's clear that you've always been very good at making money, from a very early age. But from your time in being involved with the Clinton Administration, and as being the head of the DNC, you had a reputation for being an incredible fundraiser. You were able to raise money for Democrats which in the past everyone believed that only a Republican could do.

Terry McAuliffe:
Yeah. I think one of my proudest moments was 2004, when the DNC, for the first time in the history, outraised the Republican National Committee, and they had a sitting president. But, you know, if you read the book, I went out and built a huge infrastructure. New headquarters, voter files. I mean, we had nothing. 18 million in debt when I became chairman of the Party. But we were able to technologically fix it with a lot of great people, to the point that millions upon millions of people, new donors who were giving us 10 and $20 a year, were signing up to help the Democratic party. But I'll be honest. I love asking for money. I don't get paid for any of this. I do this as a full-time volunteer. I leave 5 little children at home probably 260 days a year. Maybe it's in my DNA. Maybe I'm nuts. But you know, I love asking for money. What's the worst thing they can say to you? No. I've never been shot, I've never been beaten.

Larry Lemmons:
Although you wrestled alligators.

Terry McAuliffe:
I once wrestled an alligator, I got myself in trouble. A 9 foot, 269 pound alligator by the name of Jumper. I'll do anything once.

Larry Lemmons:
So the old stereotype is that the rich vote for Republicans, and the poor vote for Democrats. I think what you showed is that there is a lot of money that's willing to go into Democratic coffers, people like you and Jim Pederson, for example.

Terry McAuliffe:
Yeah, you gotta give people a reason to vote for you. And I always found it offensive the way they always would say "Well, businesses gotta support Republicans". You know, as you are reading my book, I started my first business at 14, started two dozen companies. I was able to retire at a very young age, and that's why I've been doing this politics for 15 years as a volunteer. I love it. But you know what, it's the Democrats who create fiscal growth. I mean, George Bush 1 left a huge deficit for Clinton. He turned it into a surplus. $5.6 trillion surplus. Bush 2 came in, wiped it out. $7 trillion debt. That's a $13 trillion shift. It's the Democrats who balance the budget. Bill Clinton had the lowest federal work force, and the smallest size since John f. Kennedy in the 1960's. So it's the Democrats who know how to run this country, and know how to run a business. We have to continue to do it. It is an absolute crime that Al Gore was not in the White House, we could have had a continuation. Would have preserved Social Security for many more years. But Bush's reckless tax cuts. I'm in that top 1\%. I'm lucky. I worked hard. But I've gotten 5 tax cuts from George Bush. Most Americans haven't gotten anything. Why do you keep giving me tax cuts when a million children lose their after school program, or we can't buy body armor to the troops in Iraq? It's fundamentally wrong. Give tax cuts to the people who go out and buy cars or groceries or clothing. That gets the economic engine in this country going.

Larry Lemmons:
What do you say to people, primarily from the right, who have a very adverse reaction to Senator Clinton, primarily from her time as first lady.

Terry McAuliffe:
People come to me and say, "I can't vote for her. I don't like Hillary". I say, "Why?" "Well, I don't know." You know, listen. All I tell everybody is to give us a chance. Today people say "well, she can't win". We are winning. We're winning every poll today. So we are winning. People got to get to know her. She has been in the national stage for 15 years. The other side has been scared of her. They have spent a lot of money against her. You learn that if they are not talking about you, then they don't really care about you. They care about Hillary, and they care about Bill Clinton. Our other candidates haven't been in the national arena, so their negatives are low. We're bringing our negatives down because she is now talking about her vision, and people are getting to know her. In New York, when she first ran, they said "she couldn't ever win". She just won re-election with 68\%, and she also carried upstate New York, Republican counties, with over 60\% of the vote because they got to know her. So, I tell Republicans, Democrats or whoever: give her a chance, let her make her case. Let's see where we are a year from today.

Larry Lemmons:
Thanks, Terry McAuliffe. Thanks very much for talking to us.

Terry McAuliffe:
Nice to be with you.

Merry Lucero:
Democratic Congressman Harry Mitchell joins us to talk about Arizona issues on Capitol Hill, including problems at the State Veteran's home. Attorney General Terry Goddard talks about the breakup of one of Arizona's largest human smuggling operations. And we'll get an update on gas prices. Those stories, Tuesday on "Horizon".

Jay Lawrence:
Wednesday, a debate on school choice between ASU law professor Paul Bender and Clint Bolick of the Alliance for School Choice. Thursday, a conversation with presidential candidate Congressman Ron Paul of Texas. Friday, don't forget to join us for the Journalists' Roundtable. Good night, everyone. Thank you so much for being part of "Horizon". It is always a pleasure visiting with you. Thank you. Good night.

Announcer: If you have comments about "Horizon", please contact us at the addresses listed on your screen. Your name and comments may be used on a future edition of "Horizon".

Announcer: "Horizon" is made possible by contributions from the Friends of Eight, members of your Arizona PBS station. Thank you.

Terry McAuliffe


  • A conversation with the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee about his book, “What a Party!” and his position currently as Campaign Director for Senator Hillary Clinton’s run for president.
Guests:
  • Jon Kyl - U.S. Senator
  • Terry McAuliffe - Former Democratic National Committee chair
Category: Elections

View Transcript
Jay Lawrence:
Tonight on "Horizon", Senator Jon Kyl joins us to talk about the conflict in the Middle East, and the fallout over the US Attorney General's handling of the US Attorney firings. And a conversation with the former Democratic National Committee chair, Terry McAuliffe. He's written a book about his life as a fundraiser. Next on "Horizon".

Announcer:
"Horizon" is made possible by contributions from the Friends of Eight, members of your Arizona PBS station. Thank you.

Jay Lawrence:
Good evening. Thanks for joining us tonight on "Horizon". I'm Jay Lawrence. U.S. Senator and presidential candidate John McCain is currently in Iraq to see the progress of the U.S. Iraqi security crackdown in Baghdad. Congress is at recess, which allows Arizona's other senator, Jon Kyl, to join us tonight. Senator Kyl, of course, visited Iraq in February. What was that like, Senator? Welcome. I'm glad you're here.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, thanks very much. I'd rather be here than Iraq. But it was an interesting visit because the so-called surge had just begun about three weeks before that. Our first brigade was already in country. The second one was preparing to move in. And both the Iraqis and our commanders on the ground were already seeing some positive signs of success. Signs that Senator McCain has confirmed continue up to this time.

Jay Lawrence:
You know, it's amazing watching Senator McCain walk around seemingly unfettered. We know there are a lot of guards around, but it sure looks better than what we've seen in the past.

Senator Jon Kyl:
And it is. Now granted, you're wearing the bulletproof vest and so on. But that's precautionary. Listen. There will be bad days and good days. But our commanders have noted progress particularly in places like Sadr City. We were able to go in there without a shot being fired. The difference between now and what happened the last couple years is: when they go in and clear an area in the past, we would leave and the bad guys would just filter right back in. Now, we are leaving behind both American and Iraqi units to hold the area, to maintain the stability. And if that can continue now for several months, people of Iraq will gradually see a stability that will enable them to believe in their government. And that will be the beginning of the political compromise that have to be made for long-term stability.

Jay Lawrence:
You know, it's interesting. John McCain said that the media really isn't reporting all of the good news that's going on in Iraq. Do you feel that way, sir?

Senator Jon Kyl:
I do. There is a lot good. But it's like the Evening News. Do you see all kinds of acts of charity and so on on the evening news though? No. They say if it bleeds, it leads. It's a fire. It's a police chase. It's something of that sort. Because it's exciting and visual. And unfortunately, that's the way war is. It's hard to cover the schools that are built, the roads that are repaired, and so on. This is not to take away from the violence. But there is a lot of good that's occurring there. And people who spend a lot of time there see that. And that, again, is why the people with whom we talked were cautiously optimistic that this new surge strategy can work.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator, the House and Senate both voted to continue funding the war in Iraq, but they named a date specific for the end of it. Your thoughts on that, sir.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, that's the one thing that will defeat us. We're not going to lose on the battlefield, but we could lose here at home. I think this is the first time in the history of warfare, at least that I know of, where a country, in the middle of the war, gives a date for quitting and says, as of a certain date, we'll begin withdrawing our troops. That's 120-days from the time the bill would be signed. And then by a certain date, roughly a year from now, we'll be gone. Now, that is not only fundamentally wrong and destructive as a policy, but think about the message it sends to our allies there, to the Iraqis that have sacrificed, to our own troops. And think about the message it sends to the enemy: just wait us out. You cannot win a war with that kind of a strategy. Unfortunately, the Democrats know that President will have to veto the bill with the poison pill in it. So all of this takes a lot of time. The troops need the money by April 15th. And the bill won't even get to the president, I think, until the 16th of April. So we're looking at May, and perhaps, even June before the veto is sustained, they rewrite the bill, we pass it again, send it back to him again, and the money flows to the troops. And that's assuming that they cooperate the second time around. I hope this isn't a "slow bleed strategy" to pretend like they're funding the troops by passing a bill, knowing all along that president can't sign it.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator, what has to fall into place in order for the troops to begin leaving Iraq? What things must happen?

Senator Jon Kyl:
I think that there are two key things. There has to be a prolonged period of relative stability, so that we know that Iraqi army and police can actually maintain the peace when we leave. And secondly, we have asked the Iraqi Government to do several things they've got to do. They've got to have a political reconciliation; they're going to pass a law that distributes the oil revenues to all the people in the country. And they need to do some other things, too. They call it the "De-Baathification", to ensure the people that were in the prior Saddam Hussein government are not going to be punished if they weren't the top dogs, the people making the key decisions. Just because you were part of the Baathist Party, won't preclude you from being in the new government, for example. If they make those political compromises, and you have relative stability, then I think we'll be able to leave.

Jay Lawrence:
Is there any reason to divide the country? Kurds, Shia, Sunni, give them their own sections, divide the oil equally among them? Is there anything to that, sir?

Senator Jon Kyl:
That's not our decision. It's their country. They've got a constitution. They've elected a government. They can do that, but they're not going to do it. They've already cross that bridge, I think. What I think they will do is perhaps either amend their constitution, or pass some laws within the current constitution that creates a little more autonomy to the southern region and to the Kurdish areas, but will distribute their oil revenue roughly equally in the three different parts of the country. But I think they've already made the decision, they're not going to divide their country into three pieces.

Jay Lawrence:
Al-Sistani, a Shia cleric, rejected an American proposal to allow thousands of Baath Party members to return to government service. Will that succeed?

Semator Jon Kyl:
Well, that's that "De-Baathification" Law I said. It's controversial in the country. I think that the -- Sistani is a Shia cleric. He's been relatively moderate. He's cautioned against the use of force, for example. But he doesn't want the same people that supported Saddam Hussein back in power, and you can't blame him. I think, however, there have to be some compromises. And as long as the majority of the Shia understand that the Sunni are not going to come back in and control the government, there ought to be a way that some of them, the ones that weren't responsible for Saddam Hussein's policies, to at least hold office or to be a part of the body politic in the country. That's something that they all have to work out, though.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator Kyl, any conversation that we have must certainly include our problems with Ahmadinejad and Iran. They've captured 15 British service personnel. What's going on?

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, this is another example of irresponsible Iranian behavior. Look at all the things that they've done. Look at the hostage crisis where 100 -- I've forgotten exactly how many Americans they were holding, but 444 days in captivity? This is the second time Brits have been taken captive. The Iranians love to provoke. And then I suspect what they're trying to get out of this, though who knows for sure, is a commitment by the Brits not to take certain actions, perhaps sanctions or other kinds of action against the Iranians, in return for getting their people back. They're clearly using the hostages as pawns in their larger game with the West. One hopes that our European allies would be awakened by this reality and be willing to support US efforts to apply stronger sanctions against the Iranian Government, as we've tried to accomplish in the United Nations over the last several months. We'll see if that happens, however.

Jay Lawrence:
They're a nuclear threat. How should we be dealing with that? They must -- We should be frightened. We should be concerned.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Absolutely. Ahmadinejad says he'd like to erase Israel from the face of the Earth, and talks about declaring war on everybody that doesn't agree with him. If he has a nuclear weapon, he's going to be extraordinarily difficult to deal with, which is why you'd want to stop that from happening. This is we've gone to the United Nations, we've asked our European Allies to join us in applying Diplomatic Sanctions to that country, as well as other measures to bring Iran to the table so they can appreciate that they don't need the nuclear weapon to preserve their integrity as a country, and that if they try to pursue it, they're going to be a Pariah Nation. They're already the world's largest state sponsor of terrorism. If we're not able to get our European Allies and others, the Chinese and Russians to cooperate with us, then eventually, the option that no one wants to resort, to the option of force, is all that's left on the table. I would rather urge our European friends, and Chinese, and Russians to join us in the diplomatic efforts to bring Iran around rather than having to resort to force.

Jay Lawrence:
So many subjects, so little time. The Attorneys General. The Attorney General and his handling of the US attorney firings. You have spoken out against that.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Well, I called it ham-fisted. He had the right to do what he did. The President can terminate any of the US Attorneys at any time, even without cause. But this was done in an extraordinarily poor way. And the explanations that followed invited criticism from me and others whose integrity was brought into play when they said that they were terminated for "performance reasons". Now, Paul Charlton was the US Attorney here in Arizona--

Jay Lawrence:
Indeed.

Senator Jon Kyl:
-- And he was asked to leave. Paul Charlton was not relieved for "performance reasons". He performed extraordinarily well. He was asked to leave because he had policy disagreements with the Administration on a couple of key issues. He wanted to do it his way, they wanted him to do it a different way. They have the right to ask him to do it their way and they have the right to remove him. But once they said they released him for "performance reasons", he had to stand up and say, "Wait a minute," and I had to defend him because I knew that wasn't the case. And this is why there is such consternation about the way it was handled. But did they have the right to do it? Yes, there's no question about that.

Jay Lawrence:
Can the Attorney General keep his job?

Senator Jon Kyl:
I think if he explains a lot of the inconsistencies when he testifies. By the way, he'd like to testify as soon as possible. The Democrats in the Senate are hoping to play this thing out over time. They've not invited him to testify, I think, until April 17. We really ought to get this behind us. Have him come, tell us what he knows. And if the President still has confidence in him, he stays. Obviously, if he doesn't, he goes.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator, you and the Republicans have been in power for a long time in the--since '94 in the US Senate and the House. Suddenly, you're the minority. What is the dynamic there? Do you feel it? Are the Democrats vengeful, saying "you got us then, we'll get you now"?

Senator Jon Kyl:
well, we had -- we were in the minority for about a year when Jim Jeffords, you remember, switched over to the other side. I served in the minority in the House of Representatives for eight years, so I know what it's like. Somebody quipped -- and there's a little bit of truth to this -- that the Democrats are still acting like they're in the minority, and the Republicans are still acting like they're in the majority. Now, what do they mean by that? The Democrats were lean and hungry to take the majority back. And to some extent, they're still acting in a very aggressive political way, which is what you do when you're in the minority. Republicans got too fat and happy, frankly, and didn't do the things that the American people wanted us to do to stay in power. And so they changed the majority. And I'm afraid to say that in some respects, Republicans have not yet learned that they're in the minority now. And we're going to have to work together, instead of each going in their own direction. When you're in the minority, if you don't stick together you never get to be back in the majority again. So to some extent, we've got to get our act together. I think we're beginning to do that in the Senate. I really can't speak too much to it in the House. But in the Senate, I think we've recognized what we have to do. And unfortunately, already the Democrats have begun to sort of revert to form and overreach, like the Emergency War Supplemental, in which instead of just getting the money to the troops, they're trying to score some political points. I don't think that's something the American people appreciate.

Jay Lawrence:
A few minutes left. Very short time. Politics. Right now, Senator McCain is behind Rudy Giuliani. Where do you see this election? What do you see happening? You've been watching politics for a long time, sir.

Senator Jon Kyl:
And for that reason, I say, who knows? I mean, there's an eternity before the Primary -- most of the Primaries next spring. And money is a part of that. The candidates are now disclosing how much money they raised in the first quarter. And those that did a lot are bragging. The others are saying, "Oh, that's just now, you know, we'll do much better later". Jay, it is so early to tell. And in the case of John McCain, for example, you mentioned, people are concerned about the war right now. And to some extent, he is identified with a more aggressive stance in the war. But if this "Betrayist Plan" -- the so-called surge is successful, John McCain could end up looking pretty good here. In any event, he's a man who stuck with his principle, even though it hurt him politically. I think people can appreciate that that about a candidate as well.

Jay Lawrence:
Senator Jon Kyl, America and the State of Arizona, well served, sir, by your presence in the US Senate. We appreciate time that you've spent here with us.

Jay Lawrence:
Good to have you at this table.

Senator Jon Kyl:
Thank you, sir.

Jay Lawrence:
Terry McAuliffe is the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee. During his tenure, he became one of the most successful fundraisers in political history. McAuliffe's book, "What a Party!" describes his life as a fundraiser, and a friend of politicians. Larry Lemmons spoke with McAuliffe recently at the Hyatt, about his current position.

Larry Lemmons:
You're Senator Hillary Clinton's campaign manager.

Terry McAuliffe:
The chairman.

Larry Lemmons:
Oh, OK, the chairman.

Terry McAuliffe:
The manager gets paid, I don't.

Larry Lemmons:
What's the difference?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, the chairman is sort the big overall, you know, chief cheerleader.

Larry Lemmons:
OK, so what's the strategy?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, we're doing great. I mean, today, Hillary's ahead in every single poll. We just got into the thing about five weeks ago. It's going to to go fast. Unfortunately, all these big states have moved up to February 5. In 11 months, we'll have a nominee to the Democrat and Republican Party. So our strategy is that Hillary continue to put her vision out there, let people get to know Hillary. People know she's strong, she's tough, she's principled, experienced. But a lot of people just don't know who she is. And she's been defined through the filter of the Right Wing and all that. Which is fine. But now it's her turn to tell her story, and that's what we're doing.

Larry Lemmons:
What's Senator Clinton's strategy for Barack Obama?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, we're going to win, of course, but I think it's exciting that Barack is in. I said this from day one. I think he's gonna excite and bring a lot of new people into the party as a strategist. We need to beat someone in the primary, I think, in order to make us strong for the general election to go through a vigorous primary. It's good for us, and good for all candidates. I think having Barack and the others, John Edwards and Bill Richardson out there, talking to people, getting them excited, only helps us in the General Election.

Larry Lemmons:
How will she fare against whomever the Republicans choose? John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, listen. I have tremendous personal respect for John McCain. This is a man who was a Prisoner of War for five years. I just don't happen to agree, and I think most Americans don't agree politically where he is, and where he's been on the issues. He's been a big supporter of George Bush on the [troop] surge, and that's just not where America is. So, Hillary's Campaign will be to lay out her positive vision where she wants to take the country on healthcare, education, dealing with the Iraq War. And we're not going to respond to anyone else. We're going to run our campaign. I'm hoping we're going to have the most exciting, uplifting, positive campaign you've ever seen. However, I will put everyone on notice, that if you go after Hillary unfairly, and you lie about her, we will respond immediately. We are not going to let them swift boat Hillary Clinton, we're not gonna let them do to her what they did to Al Gore and to John Kerry. We're gonna respond, we're gonna fight back. Because we owe it to the people who count on us to fight for them, those that have no voice in politics.

Larry Lemmons:
you have an anecdote in your book, it was kind of funny, from the 2004 campaign. You and John McCain were in an elevator and he whispered in your ear, and I am paraphrasing, something to the effect of "my guy is not that great, but your guy is a wimp."

Terry McAuliffe:
Right. I actually did Senator McCain a favor. I actually cleaned up what he said. [laughs] I did him a favor. Two guys on an escalator going up. His point was, he was not a big fan of George Bush, but he just was shocked that John Kerry, who had fought and volunteered twice to go to Vietnam against bush, who was AWOL. And John wasn't respondent, and John McCain couldn't figure out how that could possibly be. And I happened to agree with John McCain on that issue.

Larry Lemmons:
Let's go back to the 2000 election. You were saying in your book that Republicans do what it takes to win. During Florida, they sent James Baker down and the Democrats sent down Warren Christopher, who might be a nice guy, but he didn't have that same kind of fight.

Terry McAuliffe:
That's right, no match. In fact, Warren Christopher, I subsequently found, only visited Florida once. We were fighting for the Presidency. We won that election. They were stealing the election, and we let them do it. I mean, not going to sit here and argue with the Republicans. They fought harder. Shame on us. And that was my point. My point of the book is, it's not about Kerry or Clinton or anybody. When you're running for President, first of all, the public likes to see you get knocked down. They also want to see if you get back up, dust yourself off, and get into the arena again. Because you're fighting for people who have no voice. And we should have responded immediately in the Swift Boat and everything else. It was just a shame. Same thing in Florida in 2000. We should have fought harder.

Larry Lemmons:
Some Democrats have said that Kerry and Edwards gave up too quickly in Ohio.

Terry McAuliffe:
Yeah, and John really looked at that the next morning. And his people on the ground in Ohio told him that "I don't care how many of the absentees, there just wasn't enough difference." I think Bush won by a couple million votes overall. However, out of 5.8 million votes cast in Ohio, he only won by 119,000 votes. If we shifted 60,000 votes, John would be in the White House. That's it. So why did you have $50 million in the bank at the end of the campaign? Should have used it in Ohio.

Larry Lemmons:
Well, given the close election then in the last two cycles, what would be Senator Clinton's strategy should the same situation arise?

Terry McAuliffe:
Well, we actually got a half million more votes than George Bush did and Al Gore did in the first one. In the second one, let's be honest, it was all fought in a post 9/11 world. And now, the whole issue of terror -- and listen, they use the color code system, remember they change it every other day. I don't know what color we are today, it might be Taupe, I don't know what we are today. But they clearly don't use it the way you used to use it during the campaign. And it's a different world today because now Americans think that the Democrats, not the Republicans, will do a better job of fighting terror. So the whole world has shifted. So clearly, it's our advantage. Now we got to be smart. We got to work hard. We got to be tough. We got to be responsive.

Larry Lemmons:
In your book, it's clear that you've always been very good at making money, from a very early age. But from your time in being involved with the Clinton Administration, and as being the head of the DNC, you had a reputation for being an incredible fundraiser. You were able to raise money for Democrats which in the past everyone believed that only a Republican could do.

Terry McAuliffe:
Yeah. I think one of my proudest moments was 2004, when the DNC, for the first time in the history, outraised the Republican National Committee, and they had a sitting president. But, you know, if you read the book, I went out and built a huge infrastructure. New headquarters, voter files. I mean, we had nothing. 18 million in debt when I became chairman of the Party. But we were able to technologically fix it with a lot of great people, to the point that millions upon millions of people, new donors who were giving us 10 and $20 a year, were signing up to help the Democratic party. But I'll be honest. I love asking for money. I don't get paid for any of this. I do this as a full-time volunteer. I leave 5 little children at home probably 260 days a year. Maybe it's in my DNA. Maybe I'm nuts. But you know, I love asking for money. What's the worst thing they can say to you? No. I've never been shot, I've never been beaten.

Larry Lemmons:
Although you wrestled alligators.

Terry McAuliffe:
I once wrestled an alligator, I got myself in trouble. A 9 foot, 269 pound alligator by the name of Jumper. I'll do anything once.

Larry Lemmons:
So the old stereotype is that the rich vote for Republicans, and the poor vote for Democrats. I think what you showed is that there is a lot of money that's willing to go into Democratic coffers, people like you and Jim Pederson, for example.

Terry McAuliffe:
Yeah, you gotta give people a reason to vote for you. And I always found it offensive the way they always would say "Well, businesses gotta support Republicans". You know, as you are reading my book, I started my first business at 14, started two dozen companies. I was able to retire at a very young age, and that's why I've been doing this politics for 15 years as a volunteer. I love it. But you know what, it's the Democrats who create fiscal growth. I mean, George Bush 1 left a huge deficit for Clinton. He turned it into a surplus. $5.6 trillion surplus. Bush 2 came in, wiped it out. $7 trillion debt. That's a $13 trillion shift. It's the Democrats who balance the budget. Bill Clinton had the lowest federal work force, and the smallest size since John f. Kennedy in the 1960's. So it's the Democrats who know how to run this country, and know how to run a business. We have to continue to do it. It is an absolute crime that Al Gore was not in the White House, we could have had a continuation. Would have preserved Social Security for many more years. But Bush's reckless tax cuts. I'm in that top 1\%. I'm lucky. I worked hard. But I've gotten 5 tax cuts from George Bush. Most Americans haven't gotten anything. Why do you keep giving me tax cuts when a million children lose their after school program, or we can't buy body armor to the troops in Iraq? It's fundamentally wrong. Give tax cuts to the people who go out and buy cars or groceries or clothing. That gets the economic engine in this country going.

Larry Lemmons:
What do you say to people, primarily from the right, who have a very adverse reaction to Senator Clinton, primarily from her time as first lady.

Terry McAuliffe:
People come to me and say, "I can't vote for her. I don't like Hillary". I say, "Why?" "Well, I don't know." You know, listen. All I tell everybody is to give us a chance. Today people say "well, she can't win". We are winning. We're winning every poll today. So we are winning. People got to get to know her. She has been in the national stage for 15 years. The other side has been scared of her. They have spent a lot of money against her. You learn that if they are not talking about you, then they don't really care about you. They care about Hillary, and they care about Bill Clinton. Our other candidates haven't been in the national arena, so their negatives are low. We're bringing our negatives down because she is now talking about her vision, and people are getting to know her. In New York, when she first ran, they said "she couldn't ever win". She just won re-election with 68\%, and she also carried upstate New York, Republican counties, with over 60\% of the vote because they got to know her. So, I tell Republicans, Democrats or whoever: give her a chance, let her make her case. Let's see where we are a year from today.

Larry Lemmons:
Thanks, Terry McAuliffe. Thanks very much for talking to us.

Terry McAuliffe:
Nice to be with you.

Merry Lucero:
Democratic Congressman Harry Mitchell joins us to talk about Arizona issues on Capitol Hill, including problems at the State Veteran's home. Attorney General Terry Goddard talks about the breakup of one of Arizona's largest human smuggling operations. And we'll get an update on gas prices. Those stories, Tuesday on "Horizon".

Jay Lawrence:
Wednesday, a debate on school choice between ASU law professor Paul Bender and Clint Bolick of the Alliance for School Choice. Thursday, a conversation with presidential candidate Congressman Ron Paul of Texas. Friday, don't forget to join us for the Journalists' Roundtable. Good night, everyone. Thank you so much for being part of "Horizon". It is always a pleasure visiting with you. Thank you. Good night.

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