|Editions | myCNN | Video | Audio | Headline News Brief | Feedback||
Larry King Live
Ford Children Discuss Their Father's Stroke; George W. Bush's Siblings Discuss Their Brother's Presidential BidAired August 3, 2000 - 9:00 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LARRY KING, HOST: It's the fourth night of the Republican National Convention here at the Comcast Center in downtown Philadelphia. A little over an hour from now, the presidential nominee, George W. Bush, will address this conclave and the nation -- indeed, the world -- and then it's on to Los Angeles and the Democrats.
This is edition No. 1 of LARRY KING LIVE. We have two editions each night at conventions, back again at midnight.
We begin with the Ford kids. Kids? We're happy to have them here.
Susan Ford Bales, the daughter of Gerald and Betty Ford, and Jack Ford and Michael Ford, the sons of the Fords, who have just come from spending the day at the hospital.
Susan, how did you hear about your father's stroke?
SUSAN FORD BALES, DAUGHTER OF GERALD & BETTY FORD: I heard it on CNN, sadly to say. It was one of those things that mother was already at the hospital and had been there, and trying to get hold of each other, and my phone wouldn't stop ringing. And so I'm sitting there watching it on TV.
KING: And you live in Albuquerque. You made plans to fly in immediately?
FORD BALES: I flew in yesterday. We picked up Jack and flew in, and Mike came in this morning. And so, you know, we got here as fast as we could, and you know.
KING: Jack, how did you here?
JACK FORD, SON OF GERALD & BETTY FORD: Well, actually, I also heard it first on CNN. I...
KING: I don't know whether to be embarrassed or...
J. FORD: At a commercial -- I was in Dallas, and I had watched the original coverage when dad went into the hospital and had left the channel on and had fallen asleep, and woke up, and he was back in the hospital. So it was...
KING: Were you shocked?
J. FORD: I was shocked, and immediately tried to get on the phone. And of course, as Susan pointed out, it's very difficult in those moments, once the news has broken, to get ahold of anyone despite the modern era of communications and so forth.
KING: And you hopped right in -- he picked you up and you came together.
J. FORD: Yes.
KING: And Michael, how did you hear?
MICHAEL FORD, SON OF GERALD & BETTY FORD: Well, I was at work, and my wife picked it up on CNN. And so she...
So she called.
KING: You would think the hospital might have called, the doctor might have called?
M. FORD: Yes. Well...
KING: And what did you -- your first thought was?
M. FORD: Well, I was concerned, because the night before, when we watched, you know, the network and saw the tribute to my father, he didn't look well and he looked tired, and I thought that maybe he was a little under -- a bit under the weather.
So I was quite scared, and you know, we made arrangements to get here as quickly as we could.
KING: When did you first see him, Susan?
FORD BALES: We first saw him last night. We went right from the airport to the hospital. And he was asleep. It was late when we got in last night. And the nurse...
KING: How did he look?
FORD BALES: Well, he was asleep, but he looked good. I mean, just to see him...
KING: He got better all day, right?
FORD BALES: He got better all day. So I didn't see him in the beginning of the day, and the nurse said, wake him, he wants to be awakened when you get here, and we thought, oh, we don't want to do that. So we woke him up, and he was just delighted to see us. He knew we were coming. He asked about my children.
So you knew the recognition -- I mean, those are your fears.
KING: No loss of any faculties?
FORD BALES: No loss of anything. He was pleased to see my husband, asked about my children, asked about Jack's children. So he looked great to us. We're very happy...
J. FORD: ... very reassuring, as it were.
KING: Steve is yet to come.
FORD BALES: He'll be in tomorrow.
When -- were you scared, Jack, when you saw him, or was he starting to look OK?
J. FORD: Well, of course, you're scared, and you don't quite know what to expect.
KING: Stroke is terrible word
FORD BALES: Horrible word.
J. FORD: It is. And of course, for a very physical, athletic, somebody who prided themselves on taking good care of themselves and so forth, I think that you couldn't help but have, you know, sort of the worst possible considerations on your mind. And as Susan pointed out, he rose right up out of the bed, said, you know, recognized us, and I think there was a tremendous...
FORD BALES: Relief.
J. FORD: ... relief that went through all of us.
KING: Slurring of speech, Michael?
M. FORD: Well...
KING: That's what he had when he was on with us, some slurring.
M. FORD: Yes, and he still has some problems with his speech, and that's really related to a swollen tongue that is not -- they don't think is connected...
M. FORD: No. No, they really don't.
He may have bitten his tongue or there was trauma there that it's now swollen. And so, that's the only impairment that I can see at all.
KING: There's some controversy, Susan, as to whether he should have been released the night before from the hospital. Are you -- do you think there was a mistake made?
FORD BALES: You know, I -- I'm not going to get involved in that. I wasn't there. I don't know what his condition was. I literally saw him on TV that night, and I agree with Mike, you know, he didn't look good. Mother was there, and I don't want to make that call.
KING: And he wanted to go, is that correct?
FORD BALES: It's my understanding...
KING: He wants to go now, right?
FORD BALES: He wanted to go home. And he is a one man -- he wanted his sinus infection taken care of and his earache taken care of, and anything past that...
J. FORD: And a good night's sleep. That's what he...
FORD BALES: And a good night's sleep. That's all he...
KING: And he's got a speech scheduled next week...
FORD BALES: Right.
KING: ... and by god, he wants to make it, right?
FORD BALES: He does. So don't mess with him.
KING: How about your mom?
J. FORD: You know, it was...
KING: Was she there when you got there last night?
J. FORD: She was not. She had already gone back to the hotel. And as Susan and I flew in, and we talked about what the possibilities were and sort of, I think, tried to jointly prepare ourselves for the worst, about halfway here we said, you know, really we should not forget to focus on mother and make sure that we support her and make sure that she doesn't get herself into a situation that was either too much fatigue or other, you know, physical possibilities and whatnot.
And she's really...
KING: And you saw her this morning?
J. FORD: We saw her last night briefly. She got a good night's sleep, which was very, you know, relieving to all of us, and today, she was a real trooper there. She was there all day at the hospital and sort of...
FORD BALES: Protecting...
J. FORD: Yes.
FORD BALES: She's very...
M. FORD: Helping him, kind of screen, you know, who could see him, and help him get his start down, you know, walk him down the hospital hall. And so she was managing the hospital today.
KING: People calling from all over the world, right? World leaders.
And tell me about the visit of Governor Bush. Were you all there when he came?
J. FORD: We were, and I have to tell you, first off, he was most gracious to do it, and call it the biggest night of his life maybe short of his wedding night, here he took the time out to come see dad. And we are were all very, very grateful for that.
But you know, he's such a warm, wonderful, caring person: You couldn't help but feel the warmth that he projected in his -- and the Bushes and the Fords have known each other for a long time. So it wasn't some perfunctory political...
FORD BALES: Stop by.
J. FORD: Stop by type of situation.
KING: And he was very warm, and your father was glad to see him, obviously.
J. FORD: Absolutely. They started talking about the campaign.
FORD BALES: Oh, dad's already, said, I'll be on the campaign trail as soon as they let me out of here, and we're all going, no, no, no, no.
KING: Does he want to go home?
M. FORD: Very anxious go home.
KING: Like tomorrow?
M. FORD: Tomorrow. And I think he, you know, feels more comfortable, you know, back in his Colorado, and you know, just in his own environment.
But he's going to respect what the doctors tell him, and they say we need to just take it easy, and so we'll be here a couple of days.
KING: Hang with as a little while. We're going to go down to the floor now where young George Prescott Bush -- we all know him as P. -- is about to address this convention. Let's take it. GEORGE P. BUSH, NEPHEW OF GOVERNOR GEORGE W. BUSH: ... who loves his family and his country. I am proud of the governor he has been, determined to do what is right and fearlessly inclusive. Most of all, I'm proud of the president that he will be.
A leader of dignity and honor who will push us to become a better nation, a nation of justice and compassion and brave acts of decency; a nation where all people...
(SPEAKING IN SPANISH)
... can share in the promise and the prosperity of...
(SPEAKING IN SPANISH)
... the American dream. That's why I got...
That's why I got involved in my uncle's campaign.
Because I realize that we not only share the same name, we share the same dreams. The dream for a leader who will bring people together to solve problems, not create them. Who will get the people's work done for the good of the people, not the good of political careers.
And a leader who really cares about those he was elected to serve, including those of us whose faces look different. You see, I'm an American, but like many, I come from a diverse background, and I'm really proud of it.
And I respect leaders who respect my heritage.
(SPEAKING IN SPANISH)
My uncle and I trade e-mails. And they're not about the Florida Marlins or the Texas Rangers. They're about education. It's an interest that I share with my uncle and my dad -- my dad who so values education that he carries pictures in his wallet of children from an inner-city public school he helped start in Miami.
That love for learning rubbed off. After my first year out of college -- after my first year out of college, I taught high school. My ninth graders were the kids the system had given up on -- the dropouts, the lost causes. But I learned from them more than they learned from me. By the time the year was half-way over, I'd lost more than a dozen students -- many to apathy, some to arrests. But I also saw others rise above their harsh circumstances and blossom in gifted and talented programs. They're now on track for college and a life far better than the one they were headed for.
Someone recently said to me, you really made a difference for those kids. Maybe I did. But as a teacher, I just gave them the tools. They did something far more valuable, they believed in themselves and had the courage to try.
I really love those kids that I taught and tutored. And my experience with them is the reason why I truly believe that the best hope -- the best hope for every kid like the Dianas (ph) and Hernans (ph) and Ezekiels (ph) is to have my uncle in the White House.
He will give teachers and schools and parents the support they need to help all children in our country get the best education they possibly can. My mom and dad always told me, if you believe in a cause, how can you not get involved? That's why I'm here.
And because it's a new day (SPEAKING IN SPANISH), now is the time to end the cynicism and the fussing and fighting in Washington. You can do that by electing my uncle.
Now is the time to make sure the American dream touches every willing heart, no matter the color of your skin or the accent of your speech. You can do that by electing my uncle.
Now is the time to restore a sense of honor and decency to the White House. We can do that...
We can do that by electing my uncle the next President of the United States.
(SPEAKING IN SPANISH)
KING: Quite a reaction for maybe the most visible Bush all week: George Prescott Bush, the nephew of George W., son of Jeb, who was on this program last night or the night before. The nights tend to run into each other.
He is attending law school at the University of Southern California. There are his proud parents -- the governor of Florida. He will be with us later. We will spend more moments with the Ford kids, as we call them, and then meet mayor of New York, Rudy Giuliani.
What are the plans now for when he goes home -- Jack.
J. FORD: The current plans are to fly back to Colorado. Of course, they've got their summer house up in Vail.
KING: When is that?
J. FORD: I would say Monday, Tuesday, somewhere in that time frame. They want to get his medicine adjusted correctly. And then they will spend the rest of the summer in Vail. And the long-term prognosis, or the doctor's information to us, is that he is so healthy and so strong, that five, six weeks, he won't even remember -- you know, nobody will even remember that it happened.
KING: And there will be no slurred speech. I mean, he will have total recovery from the stroke.
M. FORD: Total recovery. I think once they address the tongue, you know...
FORD BALES: Swelling.
J. FORD: ... he should be -- he'll be fine.
KING: What did it, what -- Susan, did they give you a reason why this 87-year-old man would handle apparently a double stroke so well?
FORD BALES: He's 87 years old. I mean, let's be realistic about this. He's outlived his parents, who had heart conditions.
KING: He's outlived the average American by 10 years.
FORD BALES: He's outlived it. He's taken very good care of himself. He exercises. He eats well. And we are just blessed that he is doing really well and proud of him and glad to be here with him.
KING: Was he frightened at all any time?
J. FORD: Oh, I don't think there is any question that you don't go through an experience like this -- and especially someone like dad -- who has never had many health problems. Of course, it is going to have that impact, but, again, the old sort of competitive juices got him going today. He was up walking the halls of the hospital.
KING: Oh, he was?
FORD BALES: Unassisted.
J. FORD: The nurse was telling him: Slow down, You are going too fast for me, so...
KING: That's great. That's great to hear.
J. FORD: You know , I think all the indications are very, very positive. KING: I thank you all very much for coming over.
KING: I know this...
J. FORD: We appreciate your support.
FORD BALES: Thank you. .
M. FORD: Thank you, Larry.
KING: You wanted to say something.
J. FORD: Oh, I was just going to say thank to you to everyone out there...
KING: Oh, yes.
J. FORD: ... who has been so good and so kind and so supportive, and -- whether it's people here in the convention or around the country, you can't believe the outpouring of love and support. And it is welcome
KING: You learn a lot when you face a health problem.
J. FORD: That's right.
KING: Speaking of health, a man on his way hopefully to recovery is next: the mayor of New York, his honor, Rudy Giuliani.
Don't go away.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of the great things about America is someone named...
KING: It's final night of the Republican National Convention and Rudy Giuliani joins us. He was supposed to be running for the Senate. He is not running for the Senate because of a health condition. And we want to get right caught up on that. This is health show tonight.
MAYOR RUDOLPH GIULIANI (R), NEW YORK CITY: That is right.
KING: Gerald Ford beat a stroke and you are going to beat prostate cancer.
GIULIANI: Absolutely. And all my prayers go to the Ford family and to Gerald Ford. President Ford is the first president that I ever worked for. He is first president I ever met as a sitting president, the day they dedicated the FBI building. And I have always admired him tremendously.
KING: I forgot. That's right. You were in Justice.
GIULIANI: Yes, I was in the Justice Department. I was the chief of staff to the deputy attorney general at the time.
KING: So, let's speak about you. You have made a decision with how you are going to treat this.
GIULIANI: Well, I have made a partial decision, which is to take hormones. I have been taking them for two and a half months to shrink the prostate, and then make a determination as to whether to do radiation or an operation, which I will probably make in the next two or three weeks.
KING: Oh, I see. So the hormones are first.
KING: And then what leads to that decision? What's the determining factor?
KING: You've been learning so much about this.
GIULIANI: Yes, it really is. And the wonderful thing about it is, if you get it early, by taking a PSA test, you just raise tremendously the chances of licking it. And prostate cancer is a cancer you can beat, but you have got to know about it very, very early. My father had prostate cancer.
KING: He did?
GIULIANI: But my father found out about it when he was 67 years old. And it was much advanced at the time. I found out about it at 56 years old, with a much better chance of being able to beat it.
KING: So, no PSA, this might not have been found.
GIULIANI: No PSA, there were no symptoms. There was nothing but a blood test.
KING: Now, what do the hormones...
GIULIANI: The actual reason I went to doctor was, I have a deteriorated vertebrae, my third one down. And when I exercise a lot and get involved in sports, it sometimes irritates me. So I went to get it checked out, and the doctor gave me a blood test. The PSA came back high. And otherwise, I probably would have found out about this five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10 years from now.
KING: Now, when they told you about -- you take a biopsy, and then they tell you -- how did you learn you had cancer?
GIULIANI: Well, the first time I learned I had a problem, I was on my way to Binghamton, New York for a campaign speech. I was halfway there on Route 17...
KING: Driving? GIULIANI: ... when I got a call from my -- always remember exactly where I was, I got a call from doctor, and he said your PSA is high, your going to have to go see a urologist. So he said next week, the week after, I said, no -- tomorrow.
KING: Good old Rudy.
GIULIANI: So we went, and then I went to a series of other tests, and finally it was up again, and I had to take a biopsy, and the doctor called me back the next day after the biopsy, and I was sitting in my office, mayor's office, and he said, "Several of the tests have come back as cancer."
KING: Like that?
GIULIANI: Like that. So you take a deep breath, and he said, "I'll meet you at Gracie Mansion." I had a speech to give that night at a town hall meeting. So I spent a half hour with him, and we went through all of it. I went and I gave the speech, we had a big event at Gracie Mansion, and I held a town hall meeting for an hour and a half, and the next day, when I woke up, I thought, I'll get it treated, no problem. And then after a while, after about three or four days, it starts to really set in that you have cancer, and it's a very frightening thing.
And when the police commissioner came and told me, Howard Safir, that he also had cancer about five days later, you all of a sudden start thinking about mortality, and are you going to make it, and what's going to happen? And it takes about four or five weeks of a few sleepless nights to finally realize that you're facing really the same risk that everybody faces. I mean, this is -- life is precarious. We don't know what's going to happen tomorrow or the next day or the next day, and cancer is just one of the precarious situations you have to face.
KING: Now they say this happens. Did other things -- Senate race, Yankee games, city budget -- diminish immediately when you hear that.
GIULIANI: Never Yankee games.
KING: All right, let's not get crazy.
GIULIANI: Yes, it does. Sure. All of it all of it becomes not as important as getting healthy, making sure you're in good condition, making sure you can survive, because you can't accomplish much unless you're healthy and you can survive. And I never paid much attention to my health.
KING: You didn't? You weren't a checkup guy?
GIULIANI: No, never since I was child. I'd never been in a hospital. I've been blessed with really, really good health. So I wasn't used to the idea that you could have a health problem of some kind. I sleep four, five hours a night. I've always just had wonderful health. So you know, 56-year-old, all of a sudden you face a situation like this, and you haven't been used to it, you have to adjust to it.
KING: More on the life and times of Rudy Giuliani, and then our team comes back, our dynamic duo, and lots more, too, including Jeb Bush.
Don't go away.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is our money for retirement, not to be siphoned off by some other government program.
KING: A few more minutes with his honor the mayor, and then we'll meet Neal Bush.
The hormones do what?
GIULIANI: The hormones stop the spread of the cancer immediately. In fact, they use the hormones in advanced cancer, and they shrink the prostrate so that it can be radiated more effectively.
KING: So you're PSA is lower now?
GIULIANI: PSA is almost nothing right now, as a result of the hormones, but the hormones haven't yet been determined to be a permanent cure for prostate cancer. In Europe, it's used that way. But here, the belief is to -- that you need to do something more radical, you need to do radiation or surgery, you know, to deal with...
KING: Are you leaning toward one or the other?
GIULIANI: Probably leaning toward radiation right now away do it, but have not made a final decision yet.
KING: What about political future, let's assume?
GIULIANI: Political future is the future. I have an unbelievably great job. I mean, the...
KING: You're mayor for how much longer?
GIULIANI: I'm mayor for 17 more months.
KING: You can't run again.
GIULIANI: Can't run again, at least I can't run again right away; I can run again in four years or eight years, and it's a job that I absolutely love. It consumes me. I love it. I have a passion for it. I mean, New York City is an unbelievable place.
KING: Are you going to campaign for Rick Lazio? GIULIANI: Sure. I already have. I mean, I've raised a lot of money for him, helped him raise a lot of money, donated money to him. I'm going to campaign anyplace he wants me, anyplace he needs me. I just had dinner with John McCain before I came over here, and John is coming up to campaign for him tomorrow or the next day.
KING: Oh yes?
GIULIANI: I'm going to urge John to campaign for him in every place that he possibly can, ask for Governor Bush to campaign for him. It's an important race.
KING: Two other quick things. This would have been a Giuliani kind of convention. I mean, the focus on you would..
KING: No, but you're going to run against Hillary. This would have been, when is he speaking, what time do you get up? Delegates would have been crowding around you.
GIULIANI: Don't miss it.
KING: Don't miss it?
GIULIANI: No, I don't. I think we're talking about before, which is how all of this becomes -- yes, it's important, but there are other things that are more important, and I think it's healthier that way. Maybe it's not so healthy when you think that politics is the only part of life. This is a part of it, but there are things that are more important.
KING: Has Governor Bush got chance in New York?
GIULIANI: Governor Bush can win New York. Ronald Reagan won it twice. I keep telling my party that. Ronald Reagan won New York State twice. The reason why we lost it after that is we gave it away, we didn't campaign there. Sure, we have a Republican governor. We have a Republican mayor in New York City. We have a Republican mayor in Syracuse and Binghamton. We have Republicans all over the state of New York, and we can carry it.
Go tell Jack Kemp that you can't win New York for a Republican -- Buffalo, Eerie County. I just saw Jack on the way in.
KING: I know. Thanks, Rudy. Always great seeing you.
GIULIANI: Good to see you.
KING: Good luck.
GIULIANI: Thank you.
KING: I'd like to do one night we do a whole thing on prostate cancer with other people that had it.
GIULIANI: I would very much like to do that. It would help a lot of people.
KING: A lot of people. And get a PSA.
Mayor Rudy Giuliani, the mayor of New York. When we come back, we're going to meet three of the Bushes. They are Marvin Bush, the brother of George Bush, Neal Bush, the brother of George Bush, and Doro Bush Cook return -- she's the sister. Three Bushes next.
Don't go away.
KING: In a little while, former Congressman Jack Kemp, the former governor, Ann Richards, will join us. They have been with us every night. They'll be with us again in Los Angeles.
Joining us now for a few moments on this big night for them, Dorothy "Doro" Bush Koch, the sister of George W. Bush; Marvin Bush, the brother, a businessman in Virginia; and Neil Bush, the brother, who's a management consultant in Texas.
Doro was with us the other night.
As it gets closer, how do you feel? Nervous?
DORO BUSH KOCH, GEORGE W. BUSH'S SISTER: I'm excited. I mean, the feeling in the convention hall is electric. People are bouncing off the walls, and I just -- it's unbelievable.
KING: Have you seen your brother today?
BUSH KOCH: I saw him in the hallway on -- before I came over here, and you know, he was kind of marching around. He had two pencils in his ear and the glasses here, and you know, kind of walking around, barking orders. So I figure he's ready.
KING: Is he nervous, Marvin?
MARVIN BUSH, GEORGE W. BUSH'S BROTHER: Not at all. I think he...
KING: Not at all?
M. BUSH: ... he is so excited about tonight, because he feels like he's going to have a chance to have an unfiltered, you know, opportunity to show who he is and what he stands for.
KING: And this is a world stage and the biggest speech he's ever made.
M. BUSH: Hey, look. he's been talking about issues for the last -- last year, year and a half, and now he's ready to sort of show people who he is: his humor, his character, his confidence, his strengths. And this is a guy that we grew up with. So I'm -- we're -- we're not nervous at all. We have so much confidence in him.
KING: You're not?
M. BUSH: At all.
KING: Doro's excited but not nervous.
BUSH KOCH: Right.
KING: And Neil?
NEIL BUSH, GEORGE W. BUSH'S BROTHER: I'm excited. I'm really excited. I'm more nervous being with you than I am about George.
KING: Pierce ain't nervous.
N. BUSH: Pierce doesn't get nervous.
KING: Pierce is the new hit of the world, your son.
N. BUSH: Well, thank you.
KING: But you're -- are you nervous for your brother?
N. BUSH: I'm really not nervous for him. I'm excited. I mean, this is a great opportunity. He's done a great job.
KING: Here comes your brother now. This is the motorcade as the governor arrives. He'll be held, of course, backstage, and the audience will not see him here until he is introduced.
N. BUSH: Larry, it's pretty amazing having a dad who became president. One out of 250 million Americans can be president at the same time, and so imagine that our brother, who we kicked around with as kids -- and you know, in clearly well-qualified, he's been a great governor, he's been a great brother, and he's going to be a great president. But it's like, it's an amazing thing. It's incredible, it's exciting.
KING: What's next? You're nephew, George P.? Is he next?
BUSH KOCH: Oh, I don't know.
KING: What is this?
BUSH KOCH: He's going -- he's going back to law school.
KING: But I mean, he's got a political future if he wants it, doesn't he?
BUSH KOCH: I think so. I think so.
M. BUSH: You tell me. Look out. That auditorium tonight was electric.
KING: Either that or Hollywood.
M. BUSH: Well, he can do either one, but I'm not sure whether he drank the Kool-Aid, if you know what I mean.
I don't know whether he got a sip of that, but I think he has a powerful force and a very dedicated kid.
KING: How close -- we just had the Fords here. How close are the Bushes, Neil?
N. BUSH: I'd say we're really, really close. If you measure closeness in terms of loyalty and faith and getting together, I mean, every one of us would throw ourselves down on a sword for the other. We just have a loving family, and it started with mom and dad, and it started for them with their parents. There's just a great tradition of family love and bonding that's...
KING: You had great grandparents, too.
N. BUSH: Oh absolutely.
KING: The Prescott Bushes.
N. BUSH: We are really blessed.
M. BUSH: George played a big role there, I mean, because I know when we were little...
KING: He's the older brother, right?
M. BUSH: He is the oldest brother, and I went to him many, many times, for advice when I was petrified to go talk to my dad. I would go sit down with George, and you know, he was a little more approachable under certain circumstances. But he also was a guy who could lay down the law.
KING: And Doro, as the only daughter, because the other girl before you were born tragically had passed away, what was it like with the three brothers?
BUSH KOCH: Let's see. I'm not going to lie.
KING: Don't lie on this program.
BUSH KOCH: I'm not going to lie.
Early on it wasn't so great. Now, it's great.
M. BUSH: It's awesome.
BUSH KOCH: Now...
KING: Who gave you the most trouble when you were a kid?
BUSH KOCH: Right here.
M. BUSH: And which one...
BUSH KOCH: This man right here.
M. BUSH: Yes, OK. All right.
BUSH KOCH: But who was the nicest? This man right here.
M. BUSH: And now who spends the most time being nice to you today?
BUSH KOCH: Ah...
M. BUSH: On national TV, big daughter, come on.
BUSH KOCH: All right.
KING: He was the worst, he was the nicest, and W. was in between?
BUSH KOCH: W. was just a lot of fun back then.
M. BUSH: W., he was a guy who had an amazing ability to utilize us when he needed us.
BUSH KOCH: Exactly
M. BUSH: He had the ability to send us to the convenience store on our bicycles.
KING: For him?
M. BUSH: For him and his friends.
BUSH KOCH: He had leadership skills.
M. BUSH: Yes, tremendous.
(LAUGHTER) BUSH KOCH: He acted like a president when he was little.
N. BUSH: He was a little older, though. I mean, he was eight years older than me, 10 and 12 years older than these guys. So he was a little older.
Obviously, when he came home from high school, it was like, you know, the king was back. And he acted it and...
KING: And what about mum? How is she tonight?
N. BUSH: I haven't -- have you guys been with mom?
KING: She's got to be flip. A son...
N. BUSH: Yes, you can't even imagine...
KING: My son the possible president.
M. BUSH: Yes. I'll tell you something about my mom. She is -- she has so much -- she has inculcated a sense of confidence in each and every one of us as we've grown up. So I don't think she's shocked as much as you would expect. But I think she is so happy -- and I know my dad -- I'll tell you something...
BUSH KOCH: My dad is...
M. BUSH: We better have a bucket underneath him...
BUSH KOCH: He's so proud.
KING: He'll be crying the whole way.
M. BUSH: He's going to lose it.
BUSH KOCH: Oh my gosh.
M. BUSH: He will lose it soon.
KING: And he told us on election night he'll be a basket case.
M. BUSH: Well, he -- OK, that's another set of issues to deal with. We'll have to be there for him.
KING: You've very funny, Marvin. I like you.
M. BUSH: Thank you. Well, you're entitled to your opinion.
KING: I can see trouble you had.
BUSH KOCH: Yes, now you know.
KING: Thank you all. I know we had limited time. I appreciate you giving us...
N. BUSH: Thank you.
M. BUSH: Thank you very much, Larry.
BUSH KOCH: Thank you.
KING: Marvin, Doro. Doro Bush Koch, Marvin Bush and Neil Bush, and...
M. BUSH: There you're looking...
KING: And on the floor, there you see their brother, the governor arriving, meeting some dignitaries backstage, the governor of Pennsylvania and others.
How does he feel here now, Marvin? You know here brother. This is like...
M. BUSH: I think he's probably a little on edge, knowing him. I think he is -- he's fired up. He's probably right now saying, "Where's Marvin in this lineup?"
KING: Why are my brothers not here, right?
Why is Doro on Larry King when he could be with me?
BUSH KOCH: That's right.
M. BUSH: Look at him. He looks great.
KING: Is he confident, would you say, Neil?
N. BUSH: Oh yes.
M. BUSH: We've got to get going.
N. BUSH: No doubt about it.
KING: Yes, you guys...
M. BUSH: Larry, we're out of here.
KING: All right. They're going. We'll be -- as we stay on President Bush, the guys have to leave us. As Governor George W. -- as Governor George W. Bush approaches backstage, we'll be right back with Jack Kemp and the Honorable Ann Richards. You're watching LARRY KING LIVE. Don't go away.
KING: We're back on LARRY KING LIVE. They are hooking Jeb Bush up. We will be talking to him. That completes our run through the entire Bush family tonight. We now welcome our dynamic duo, Jack Kemp, the co-director of Empower America -- he is with us here in Philadelphia -- and the honorable Ann Richards, the former governor of Texas, is with us in Washington. They will be together in Los Angeles. Ann did not come to Philadelphia, but Kemp is going to enemy territory.
JACK KEMP, CO-DIRECTOR, EMPOWER AMERICA: My home town.
KING: He goes to Los Angeles.
You have told us all along, Ann that: Do not take George W. Bush lightly.
ANN RICHARDS, LKL POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Right.
KING: What kind of speech do you think we will hear tonight?
RICHARDS: Well, I think it is going to be in keeping with this whole convention. It is going be long on show. It's going to be short on specifics. I think that the people listening ought to listen for the, you know, the things like medical care. I think they need to listen specifics on education, not all of this stuff about: Look what I did in Texas, because we know the realities of that.
It is going to be one of those I-will-still-love-you-in-the- morning speeches.
KING: Jack, should he be specific tonight?
KEMP: Well, he has been specific about reforming our educational system, which is failing all too many children. He has been specific about cutting the income tax rates across the board and eliminating the death tax. He doesn't believe that death should be taxable event. He thinks IRAs should be liberalized. He thinks Social Security should be reformed.
So, it's pretty pathetic to think that the Democratic Party -- bless their hearts -- can only think of him as a showcase, because, frankly , he did it in Texas -- with all due respect to Ann Richards -- and he can do it for the country. And this is a time in which we really need healing, reconciliation, reform. And we don't need a Reform Party. We have got one in George W. Bush.
KING: So, are you saying we don't need specifics tonight?
KEMP: We need both. He needs to say who he is. He needs to talk about his record. And he needs to give us a vision of where America can go here in the 21st century. And it's a powerful message, given that he has got Colin Powell standing with him, Condoleezza Rice, Dick Cheney, Elizabeth Dole. It's a pretty good team.
KING: We are going break into our group and go down to the floor a moment and talk with governor of Florida, an old friend of mine, Jeb Bush. You hear me OK, Jeb?
GOV. JEB BUSH (R), FLORIDA: I sure do Larry. How are you doing?
KING: I can't hear Jeb.
J. BUSH: Can you can hear me?
KING: OK, we will try to straighten out your microphone Jeb, apparently -- I don't get Jeb.
J. BUSH: You can't hear me?
KING: By the way -- well, let's go back to Ann Richards.
KING: You said -- we -- I mentioned earlier that you said he is tough to run against.
KING: Well, will we see a speech that will stir this crowd tonight?
RICHARDS: Oh, well you don't have to do anything to stir that crowd. You know, I made one of these speeches before. And those people are ready. And they're going to jump up.
KING: I'm not hearing Ann.
I think what I'm going to do is take a break and come right back. And we will try to connect with Ann Richards and with Governor Bush right after this.
Don't go away.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's probably a very good thing Vice President Gore wasn't...
KING: We'll be back momentarily with Jack Kemp and Ann Richards, but we straightened out -- the fixit was in my little earpiece. Nobody else -- everybody else was hearing them but me. And now we connect with my old friend, Jeb Bush, the governor of Florida -- always nice to see him.
How excited are you?
J. BUSH: I'm fired up. I just heard my son give a wonderfully passionate speech about his uncle. And I'm really, with great anticipation, waiting for my uncle to knock it out of the park -- my brother I mean.
I'm getting so confused with all these Bushes, it's hard to remember who is who. KING: Yes, all your siblings were just here.
J. BUSH: I know, how did Pierce handle himself?
KING: Pierce -- they're not ready to let him come back. He was here last night. He caused too much of a stir.
J. BUSH: I have a -- there is a businesswoman in Orlando that wants to marry him. So you have created a star, Larry.
KING: Jeb, I asked your father the other night: If this would have been five, six years ago, the thought would have been it was Jeb Bush running for president. And he agreed. What do you think?
J. BUSH: I got the best job in the world is what I think. And I'm so proud of my brother for what he has done as governor of Texas and how he has grown into this position where he is going to get our party's nomination. And I believe he is going to be next president. He has the right stuff to be a great leader. I'm so proud of him.
KING: How about your state?
J. BUSH: Well, we are going carry it. It looks as though -- since Senator Graham is not on the short list -- it will be a little bit easier. It looks like they are kind of giving up on Florida, which is great news. But even with Bob Graham on the ticket, I believe we would carry Florida. Florida is a swing state, but it is increasingly Republican. And, you know, he is my brother, I have got to make sure we carry it.
KING: You better, right?
J. BUSH: That's right.
KING: Brother will not speak to you, Jeb.
J. BUSH: It would be hard for next -- rest of my life to be able to deal with that fact.
KING: Do you intend to campaign outside of Florida?
J. BUSH: Well, not much. And it's from advice I got from my brother, which is that -- I'm a rookie governor. And I got elected to serve. And my first priority is to be the best governor I could possibly be, just as he was as governor of Texas. So, I'm going to stay focused on the thing that's most important for the people of Florida. But, in my spare time, I'm going to do everything I can.
KING: Your grandfather was a senator. Your father was president. Your brother is running for the presidency. Governor, you are a governor, and yet your father insists there is no Bush dynasty. Do you agree with that?
J. BUSH: Dynasty, I don't agree with in the sense that it connotes something that has kind of been given to you. And it hasn't been. And we have worked very hard to get to a point where we can serve people. And, you know, in a -- we learned to overcome the fears and trepidation of politics from our grandfather and our father. But there is no dynasty. It really isn't that way at all. In fact, I think everybody kind of cringes when we hear the word.
KING: And one other thing, because I know you've got a busy time ahead of you. This is a major night in your life. What's going to happen with your son? Where is he going?
J. BUSH: Well, he is going to go to law school. And...
KING: But then what?
J. BUSH: I don't know. I'm very proud of him. I hope that he has a joyful life. And he looks like he loves politics, but he will also find other things that he loves. He is such a wonderful young man. I cannot tell you how proud I am of the speech he gave and how much he has made a difference in my brother's campaign. He may run for office. He may do something else. He may try save the world in some other way.
KING: Good luck, Jeb, thanks.
J. BUSH: Thank you, Larry.
KING: Governor Jeb Bush, the governor of the state of Florida. So we have had all the Bushes.
And now we go back to Jack Kemp and Ann Richards. And I was asking Ann -- I didn't hear her answer -- you do expect an effective speech, do you not?
RICHARDS: Well, yes, I think you are going to hear a very short speech. And despite what Jack says -- I believe your phrase, Jack, is with all due respect -- there are going to be some generalizations about things, but there -- is it is going to be short on specifics. When you talk about trying to reform Social Security, people with hair the color of Jack's and mine get a little bit nervous about what you might be doing with our Social Social money.
And, frankly, you tell me that you are going to turn it over to the people to invest, I'm scared as I can be, because I think I would do a good job, but I'm not too sure about you.
KEMP: You know, it's really -- excuse me.
RICHARDS: I really do think that this convention has been a great show. It has been so tightly and carefully controlled. And that's show business. But when it comes down to what these guys are going to do for the American people, I think you can look at the fact that we've got a million and a half children in Texas with no insurance. One in four of our kids lives in poverty. I think you want to know what are they going to do about health care. They have been real short on that at this convention.
KING: Isn't that fair, Jack? KEMP: Makes me wonder who's been president for the last eight years, what party's been in power for the last eight years. You know, and Ann is worried about invested. I'm worried about people who aren't invested. How about people who don't have a chance to own their own home, own their own retirement system? Why should Social Security, that gets a 1 1/2 percent rate of return invested in T bills, government paper...
KING: But it doesn't lose.
KEMP: Listen to this. The California State Teachers and Public Employees Pension Fund is invested in bonds and stocks, and last year got 26 1/2 percent. Could we do that every year? No. But on average, if working men and women could invest in protected, market- oriented bonds and stocks, as most pensions are, from unions to the California public employees retirement system, they'd get 9 or 10 percent. You could be a millionaire by time you're 50 or 55. Why do we keep people living in poverty who could take advantage of the world's greatest economy.
KING: I think what Ann is saying, what you just said, will he say tonight, do you think?
KEMP: He won't say it the way Jack Kemp says it. He shouldn't. But he has to make sure that every senior citizen in America is guaranteed his or her retirement, his Social Security, anybody coming into the system.
KING: Can't lose.
KEMP: But young men and women entering work today should be able to have their own individual retirement system. We could create a class of people who own America, who own the system.
It's interesting, Mark said the workers should overthrow the capitalists. Isn't it interesting, in America, workers are becoming capitalists. And under George Bush, they'll be a lot wealthier than they will be in a staged system that's going to go broke in 25 or 30 years.
KING: Ann, why...
RICHARDS: He doesn't want to answer your question. He doesn't want to answer your question that what happens when people lose their money? They turn then to the government and they turn then to us to make up their losses. And I'm going to tell you, it's just like this whole convention, you can put lipstick on a hog and call it "Monique," but it is still a pig. I don't care how hard you try to gloss over the fact that Social Security is a needed thing by so many people.
KEMP: I agree with that.
RICHARDS: Including people with hair the color of Jack's and mine, and if you turn it over to them as individuals, a lot of them are going to lose money and we're going to have to make up the difference, and that's the reality of it. KING: It could happen, right?
KEMP: But, Larry, no one is suggesting, as Ann seems to be suggesting, that people are going to willy-nilly be able to take 4 or 5 percentage points of their payroll tax, which now goes up to 12.7 percent for Social Security, and put it into some type of offshore investment or something that's going to lose money. The point is, over the past 50 years of Social Security, money invested in bonds and stocks have had a gain...
KING: The record speaks for itself.
KEMP: ... compounded annually at least 9 percent. T bills give you a 1 percent rate of return. In fact, if you're black and you're a male in America, you lose money. The system is not portable. It is not left to your widow, and it is demeaning to low-income people to keep them enslaved to a system that is taxing them that heavily.
KING: We will see both of them in California and Los Angeles. Kemp and Richards will return then. We thank you the honorable Ann Richards and Congressman Jack Kemp, former vice presidential nominee. We'll be back at midnight with Arnold Schwarzenegger others.
Right now, we have a special video courtesy of the Grand Old Party. And this video is entitled "The Sky's the Limit." It was -- adviser Stuart Stevens (ph) describes as a very personal look at the life and times of George W. Bush, and his wife Laura, some views of their ranch in Crawford.
Let's go to video.
Bernie and Judy and the gang follows this.
GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think in order to be good president, first and foremost, you have to know where you want to lead. I want to lead America to a day that everybody in this country feels that the great American dream belongs to them as much as anybody else, if they're willing to work for it.
There is kind of life I think that a lot of Americans feel is slipping away. Safe for kids everywhere, and baseball, barbecues, football games after church. Midland is out in middle of no really. It's kind of on the edge. And I know this may sound trite, but in the '50s, people who went to Midland were pretty daring, and were kind of pioneers, entrepreneurial pioneers, in many ways. Their used to be slogan in Midland said, "The Sky is the Limit," which really is such an optimistic slogan. It's how I feel about America really.
BARBARA BUSH, FORMER FIRST LADY: The kids all were the same. They all went to public school and then on to high school, and when Robin died, Jebbie was just about 3 or 4 months old and George was 7.
G.W. BUSH: It was a tough time. The thing I came away from that is that is marriages face stressful situations, and sometimes a stressful situation like that can wreck a marriage. In this case, it made my mother and dad's marriage that much stronger, brought them together and brought our family together.
B. BUSH: But he compensated by trying to make me feel better. And for about six months, George kept big George and me laughing, or playing with us or doing things with us, and we, on the other hand, were trying to do things with him so he wouldn't feel neglected. When suddenly one day I heard him out window say to Mike Procter, a friend his, "I'm sorry, Mike. I can't come out and play. I have to play with my mother." And I realized that that caring little boy had -- he'd really had been entertaining me. I hadn't been entertaining him at all. So I had to let him go.
LAURA BUSH, WIFE OF GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH: We met in Midland in 1977. George had moved back in 1975.
B. BUSH: He fell so madly in love with her so quickly.
L. BUSH: It was a whirlwind romance. I was school librarian then in Austin, Texas, and I came home for a couple of weeks in the summer to stay with my parents, and George and I met then.
B. BUSH: And George knocked on the door, and he said, "Mother, I want you to meet Laura Welch. She's the girl I have to marry." I said "What?" And he meant I'm going to marry.
L. BUSH: Married right away, and then I moved back to Midland, and that was a very sweet time in our lives. That was when we had our children.
G.W. BUSH: There was a great moment when they were born, and I was in delivery room, and it was just an incredible feeling of life and the preciousness of life, and I realized I was responsible for helping them grow up in a safe and secure home, that I was responsible for loving them with all my heart and all my soul, that I was going to be responsible for helping them get a good education, and they -- these girls mean more to us than anything, and they've just graduated from high school, and it just seems like yesterday we were at the hospital having birth.
G.W. BUSH: I like to laugh. And I like to laugh with people, and you know, sometimes I find myself I need to laugh at some of the things I say. I'm just -- I'm a person who likes to smile.
MAYOR CARLOS M. RAMIREZ (D), EL PASO, TEXAS: The governor has family values that are very dear to Hispanics. We have seen that. He embraces those family values. We have those family values, so we identify with him.
GEORGE H.W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You know, their the same values that everybody here teaches their own kids. To be honest, tell the truth, give somebody else credit.
G.W. BUSH: Country is so -- values are so strong and the concept of entrepreneurship, family, freedom, such a powerful, powerful part of the American experience, that somebody who's newly arrived to this country can be just as an American as somebody who has been here for generations.
A wonderful man named John White asked me to come work with him, and in a project in the third ward of Houston called Project PULL. It was a mentoring program.
ERNIE LADD, CO-FOUNDER, PULL: The meaning of PULL was Professional United Leadership League. We had professional people who were schoolteachers, football players, basketball players, lawyers and doctors involved, and help going to community to help minority kids.
G.W. BUSH: I realized then that society can change and must change one person at a time, and but it was place that was full of activity, and energy, and kids were coming from tough circumstances. I saw that firsthand one night when I took a little boy who I took a shining to named Jimmy Dean. I took him home, and it's a situation I had never seen before. It was a living room with his mom, looked like she was on drugs, and bunch of hanger-oners, and smoke filled, and this was this boy's home, and it was tragic and sad that he was growing up in such a tough environment, an environment that -- where the love that I had known as a child seemed like the drugs and alcohol abuse had replaced that love. And unfortunately, the story ends on a sad note. My little friend was shot when he became a teenager, and died.
LADD: We all were made in the image of God, regardless of the color of skin, and George Bush was a part of working this out for the city of Houston. The city of Houston could be very well thankful for George Bush and John White.
G.W. BUSH: One of the great challenges of our generation is to assume responsibility and lead. We started as the "if it feels good, do it" generation. But now we're moms, and dads, and business leaders and teachers. If we don't help others, if we don't step up and lead, who will? That's one of the reasons I ran for governor of Texas.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have seen a big difference since he has been governor of the state of Texas in the amount of supports that we have to help us as educators reach the standards. He said, if you need it, we'll get it for you. We have Web sites. We have grant programs. We have teacher training in the state of Texas, and we have George leading the way. George W. -- people ask me why have I followed him so intently in this education and reading. I followed him because he's been leader. He has been leading the way.
G.W. BUSH: Reading is new civil right, and inherent in that statement is this profound knowledge, and it says, if you can't read, you can't access the American dream.
"Dear Governor Bush, thank for you coming to our school and for your visit. Thank you for trying to be our president. We hope that a lot of people vote for you." So do I. "If you become president, we hope that you will make the world safer and that there will be no more bad guys." America's more than just another country. America is more than just a place. It's an ideal. Teddy Roosevelt said, "It's hard to fail, but it's worse never to have tried." Our great country was built by people who never gave up and never gave in.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RONALD REAGAN, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN F. KENNEDY, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Ask not what your country can do for you...
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REV. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR., CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST: I have a dream today.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
G.W. BUSH: Dreamers, the doers who take risks and sometimes failed, but then rose above failure to achieve greater good things.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARD NIXON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Because of what you have done, the heavens have become a part of man's world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
G.W. BUSH: I'm confident I can do the job that people want me to do. I'm a proud member of my party. But I'm more than that -- I'm an American. I love my country. I love what America stands for. I'm going to remind people that we're lucky to be Americans.
TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com
|Back to the top||
© 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.|
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.