CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Interview With Bob Graham, Richard Lugar, Sam Nunn, Saxby Chambliss, John Dingell, Enya, Chris Matthews, Bob Schieffer
Aired November 8, 2001 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have our marching orders. My fellow Americans, let's roll.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, President Bush with a pep talk and a progress report: part reassurance, part rally to the cause.
Joining us with reaction in Washington, Senator Bob Graham, chairman of the Select Intelligence Committee, and with him Senator Richard Lugar, who serves on both Select Intelligence and Foreign Relations.
From Atlanta, former Senator Sam Nunn, once chairman of the Armed Services Committee. He's now CEO of the Nuclear Threat Initiative. Also in Atlanta, Congressman Saxby Chambliss, chairman of the Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security. Back in Washington, Congressman John Dingell, dean of the House, ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
And then from Chicago, Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC's "Hardball" and author of "Now Let Me Tell You What I Really Think." In Washington, Bob Schieffer, anchor and moderator of CBS News, "Face the Nation."
And later from Los Angeles, the incredible Enya sings "Only Time."
They're all next on LARRY KING LIVE.
We begin in Washington with Senators Graham and Lugar, and in Atlanta former Senator Nunn. Senator Graham, what did you think of the president's speech?
SEN. BOB GRAHAM (D-FL), CHAIRMAN, SELECT INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: I thought it was a very reassuring speech. As I was listening to the president, I was thinking that he's only been president for now some 10 months and how he has grown into the job. He's doing a very effective connection with the American people and giving them the kind of information that people need to sustain themselves for the fact that this is going to be a long process to root out global terrorists.
KING: Senator Lugar, your reaction?
SEN. RICHARD LUGAR (R-IN), FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE: Well, it was well-organized. The president, first of all, complimented everybody in America who is making life safer for us. And that is a long and important list, and kudos were given. But he also then said a lot of people are trying to protect us here: The best defense really is offense, and we have to hunt down the terrorists, and therefore, a projected the war, that effort as it comes along with homeland security.
KING: Senator Nunn, we hear of sacrifice. He mentions it a lot. People do mention it a lot. What particular sacrifice is being asked?
SAM NUNN, FORMER U.S. SENATOR: I liked the president's appeal to people getting involved in civic affairs, helping at home, helping in neighborhoods, tutoring children. There are a lot of people out there already doing that. And they need a lot of resources and they need a lot of help.
I think calling on all of us to participate in this by helping build our communities was an important part. He also said he was going to expand the AmeriCorps, and help firemen and policemen and emergency officials with young people. I thought that was very important.
Most important, I think he recognizes now that we have to separate the extremists, the terrorists, from the rest of the Muslim community. And I think he started down that psychological trail tonight in describing the difference between our values and the terrorists' values, and in separating them from the Islamic religion. That is the key in the long run, and that will determine whether our children and grandchildren have to face these kinds of dangers 40, 50 years from now.
KING: Senator Graham, is it a mixed message and difficult to relate when you tell people be alert, be vigilant, be normal? That seems a contradiction.
GRAHAM: Those do appear to be contradictory, but I think that is the reality of the world in which we are living. And part of that is the fact that we're going to be living in this world for a long time. If this was just a matter of a few weeks or even months, we might countenance a different type of lifestyle. But we've got to be able to live with this heightened level of threat, have a degree of patience to accept the inconveniences that are going to flow from that while we are alert to anything that we think should be reported to appropriate officials while at the same time living our lives of freedom and liberty, which is the essence of being American.
KING: Senator Lugar, are we -- would you say we're definitely more secure now than we were two months ago?
LUGAR: Yes. I think the president outlined a good number of reasons why that is so. But he also gave a speech earlier this week in which he pointed out that the same terrorists who flew the aircraft into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon would be fully capable of using weapons of mass destruction with vastly different and more horrible results.
Now, that's in the same week that he's given this speech tonight. The two are connected. In addition to ferreting out all of the terrorists and the cells, and our being alert here while being calm and going about our business, we really have to do an intense job right now to make sure that the weapons of mass destruction, wherever they are, are secured, and that we continue to destroy as many of them as possible, because so long as they are out there, terrorists cells in whatever country have some opportunities for vast harm.
KING: Senator Nunn, when you were in the Senate, when you chaired Armed Services back in fact five years ago, you joined forces with Dick Lugar, who's with us tonight, and Pete Domenici, to focus on the emerging threat of bioterrorism. And you came up with the Nunn- Lugar-Domenici Domestic Preparedness Program. Did that work?
NUNN: We've got a long way to go. That is the foundation and the framework for what we need to do here at home, because it called on a tremendous amount of training for local policemen and firemen and for emergency officials, and it also, most importantly, called on research, an intensive research effort to develop ways to detect biological and chemical weapons, and to be able to greatly improve our ability to deal with that threat. But we have a long way to go.
We also, Dick Lugar and I, and with Senator Domenici's help passed in 1991 the Nunn-Lugar Act, which basically begins to help -- and has done a tremendous amount of that in the last 10 years -- secure weapons and material and know-how back in the former Soviet Union.
And I would say, Larry, picking up on what Dick Lugar just said so well, homeland defense for America, an important part of it, is in Russia, where we must help them get control of their weapons and their materials and their know-how.
We've got to increase resources there. And the paradox now is while the president is acknowledging the importance of not letting terrorists get weapons of mass destruction, the funding for the important programs that deal with the materials and know-how and the weapons in the former Soviet Union, particularly Russia, are being cut.
So there's a mismatch here between the words and the deeds, and we've got to match those two things up, and Congress has to play a big role in that.
KING: By the way, we saw President Bush board Air Force One for the trip back to Washington from Atlanta. It should be airborne shortly.
Senator Graham, last night Trent Lott, the minority leader of the Senate, on this program predicted that the aviation security bill, there will be a compromise and we'll have it through early in the week next week. Do you agree?
GRAHAM: I hope so. And Congress is doing several important things. Just today we passed the intelligence bill for next year. It contains a five-year budget, which substantially increases our funding in critical areas that will be necessary for all of these programs. If we are going to understand what is happening inside Russia in terms of their weapons of mass destruction, we are going to need better human intelligence, we're going to need better access to their signals intelligence, their communication, and we're going to need people who understand this information and can convert it into effective operational intelligence. All of those areas were substantially increased in today's five-year intelligence budget.
I am optimistic that we are going to pass not only an airline safety bill, but also a seaport safety bill, which I consider to be one of our major national vulnerabilities.
KING: Hmm. Senator Lugar, the administration plans to revamp the whole intelligence -- there are like 12 intelligence agencies -- and put all of it, or most of it, under the control of the CIA. Do you agree?
LUGAR: Yes. I think that the CIA is the natural leader in this situation. But I would say that my colleague on the program tonight, Senator Graham, is offering great leadership in trying to think through this with a bipartisan intelligence committee that is highly committed and working very diligently to figure out what happened before September 11th but more importantly what ought to happen now.
And clearly the, end of these hassles and jurisdictional disputes is at the center of a lot of our work now. And I would say it's encouraging to be a part of that and to see that leadership.
KING: Senator Lugar, by the way, do you favor this concept of national service?
LUGAR: Yes. I thought that the president was right on, and the very thought that people come to the president, come to each one of us, and say, what can I do, how can I be effective -- I've seen people who served in the Senate before, and they say, we wish we were back, because this is a time really that we think we can make a difference for this country.
KING: We'll be right back with more of our senators, might include a phone call or two. Lots more coming. And tomorrow night, by the way, special guest, the attorney general of the United States, John Ashcroft. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: We're a different country than we were on September 10th: sadder and less innocent, stronger and more united. And in the face of ongoing threats, determined and courageous.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: A lot of people are working really hard to protect America. But in the long run, the best way to defend our homeland, the best way to make sure our children can live in peace is to take the battle to the enemy and to stop them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Senator Nunn, next week the president will meet with Mr. Putin in New York. Are they getting closer on this concept of ABM's and the like?
NUNN: It seems to me they are. It seems to me that there is going to be a natural kind of trade-off here in terms of both sides reducing their nuclear weapons down, probably somewhere between 1,800 and 21-2,200 nuclear weapons.
And also having the Russians agree that we'll be able to test, as need be, to develop a limited missile defense system, I think that trade-off is coming. But I hope that they also, as some of the congressmen said today, deal in broader economic relationship as well as some very important other security initiatives, because I think we have a chance to really have a sea change in our relationship with Russia now.
And I would certainly say, Larry, that we have a chance to have both presidents step up and say let's get all the weapons and materials and know-how under control and under safe guard within four or five years. That ought to be an urgent priority in terms of keeping this out of the hands of terrorists.
We also have a chance to work with Russia in a defensive way on biological weapons. They know as much or more than we do not only about biological weapons, but also about vaccines and drugs and ways to detect those weapons. We could both join together and invite other countries to join us. And I think we can also work to give both leaders more decision time, so that we are not under a hair trigger type posture that we have been under for the last 30, 40 years. We need to do everything we can, and pledge to do everything we can, to minimize the danger any of kind of accident or miscalculation. And that's particularly true now, with the Russians' warning systems eroding.
So all of those are important items for this agenda next week, not just missile defense and offense.
KING: Let's take a call -- Tampa, Florida -- hello.
CALLER: Yes, Larry, my question for the panel is do they think the United Nations and other countries such as Saudi Arabia, have cooperated and working together to prevent future terrorism and help defend our homeland as the president spoke of tonight?
KING: Senator Graham.
GRAHAM: I think that Saudi Arabia, within its capabilities, is assisting as much as it can. It is a country which has a rather fragile government, which is itself exposed to a considerable amount of terrorist activities, and therefore, what it can contribute is restrain.
I would like to however talk a minute about what Sam Nunn just said about Russia. When we started this discussion with Russia, it looked as if the only topic on the table was national missile defense. Now it has truly become a strategic new relationship with Russia.
And one area that very much interests me, and it was the area in which the president got one of his strongest rounds of applause, was the idea of the United States becoming less dependent on the Middle East as its energy source. Russia has a tremendous capacity to be an alternative source of energy for the United States. And that would have a significant effect in changing our longtime relationship with this former rival.
KING: In that regard, Senator Lugar, are you surprised at all by how apparently cooperative Mr. Putin has been?
LUGAR: It is a pleasant surprise as, obviously, something that President Bush sensed at the first meeting. President Putin and President Bush have found good reasons to reach out and to take some risk.
But on the part of Putin, the risks are very considerable because back home, there is evidence that not all of the military, a good part of the civilian government, are not really sure precisely where he is leading them. He's leading them into an alliance with the West, with us, with European countries, with cooperation, in this war effort for sound reasons. The future of Russia is in the economy of the West and military cooperation with NATO and with the United States. And Putin has been wise enough to see that. I think it is a remarkable development, surprising perhaps, but very gratifying.
KING: Senator Nunn, couple of other things as we wind down here -- Senator, how, in your opinion, goes the war in Afghanistan?
NUNN: I'm not going to try to second-guess because a lot of tough things here. We don't have good basing. We are having to do most of the military flights off of aircraft carriers with a lot of refueling. We haven't seen the materializing of opposition in the south. That is going to require a lot of knowledge, a lot of help. So there are a lot of things that we've got to do, but I think our military is doing a good job under difficult circumstances.
The one real paradox here, Larry, is that in this battle for the minds of the Muslim world and separating them from the terrorists -- which is all important in the long run -- one of the most important missions is to be able to help bring humanitarian relief to the people in Afghanistan, who will otherwise starve to death this winter. If we have millions of people starve to death this winter in Afghanistan, even though we are not to blame in most people's minds in this country, in much of the world we will be blamed, much of the Muslim world we will be blamed.
So we are going to have to accelerate the military part, not only for military goals themselves, but also to make sure we have the access to be able to bring humanitarian relief. And we are going to have to get the U.N. to step up here and help us bring relief in the southern part of Afghanistan and get the world to help.
KING: Spokane, Washington -- hello.
CALLER: Yes, my question is for the panelists: Did we learn anything new tonight that we haven't already learned from President Bush's speech or was this sort of like a pep rally?
KING: You want to take that, Senator Graham?
GRAHAM: Well, it had some of the qualities of a pep rally. As Senator Lugar said, it was a means by which the president could thank the many, many Americans who have played a role in reuniting this country during this time of crisis.
I think what I learned the most was about George Bush as a man and as a president. I'm consistently impressed, every time I hear him speak, as to how he is growing in the office and in his command and with his relationship with the American people.
KING: Senator Lugar, the economy -- are you concerned?
LUGAR: Of course. It is obvious that we have had a downturn that was very substantial because of September the 11th, even if there was a trend that way before September 11.
We are still -- and Japan is still in a recession. It's severe. Other nations -- having great difficulties. This is going to require a very astute management. And the president is calling upon us now for a stimulus package. He is calling upon Americans to live normally, that is to travel, to fly, to go to ball games. He enumerated all these things tonight.
He's right on. We really have to live that way and not be spooked into a recession. I think we can do that, but this is really going to require the kind of speech the president gave tonight. And to say it was a pep rally isn't to denigrate it. As a matter of fact, the American people wanted to hear from the president. A good many are worried. And he is a reassuring and strong figure. And it is to the credit of your network that you carried it, along with ABC and C- SPAN and perhaps a few others.
KING: Thank you all very much, Senators Bob Graham, Richard Lugar and Sam Nunn. We'll be calling on them all again.
When we come back, two key congressmen -- Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, who really got the president to go and visit the city of Atlanta today and especially the CDC; and Congressman John Dingell, dean of the House of Representatives.
They are next. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: Our people have responded with courage and compassion, calm and reason, resolve and fierce determination. We have refused to live in a state of panic or a state of denial. There is a difference between being alert and being intimidated. And this great nation will never be intimidated.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Don't forget, at the end of the program tonight, Enya from Ireland with just an -- you will not believe what you see here at the end of the show tonight.
And tomorrow night, John Ashcroft, the attorney general of the United States, and Queen Rania of Jordan will be aboard.
We now welcome to LARRY KING LIVE, from Atlanta, Congressman Saxby Chambliss, a Republican of Georgia, chairman of the Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security. He traveled with the president to Atlanta today. And it was he that pushed for the president to come and visit the Centers for Disease Control based in Atlanta.
And in Washington, Congressman John Dingell, Democrat of Michigan, dean of the House of Representatives and ranking member of Energy and Commerce.
Congressman Chambliss, was it a hard sell to get the president to go to Atlanta?
REP. SAXBY CHAMBLISS (R-GA), CHAIRMAN, HOMELAND SECURITY SUBCOMMITTEE: Well not really, Larry. He knows the great work that the folks at the CDC have been doing. They have been under a lot of criticism because they have been operating in a very stressful situation.
And he came down today to reassure them that all of America appreciates the great job that they are doing and that they do quality work. They are quality individuals. And he had an opportunity to visit the physical facility, which was critically important because we have been trying to get some more money for the CDC from a capital improvement stand point. And today, in visiting the CDC, he did make a commitment that he is going to work with us to try to increase those resources.
KING: And did it seem to buoy the troops?
CHAMBLISS: Without question. We had a roomful of CDC employees that he had the opportunity to speak to. And, you know, when President Bush speaks from his heart, it just gives you a great feeling about what he is saying because you know that he really means it. And he just did a super job in appearing before these folks.
KING: Congressman Dingell, you have been around the wars a long time. What did you make of his speech tonight?
REP. JOHN DINGELL (D-MI), ENERGY AND COMMERCE COMMITTEE: Well, I thought it was a good speech. It was good one for the particular purposes of rousing American enthusiasm, of achieving support for the administration policies, and, quite frankly, offering leadership and comforting the American people in a time in which many of them are greatly troubled.
KING: On the anthrax anxiety in Washington -- by the way, how has it affected you, Congressman Dingell?
DINGELL: Well, it kept me out of my office for about a week and it seems, too, that I haven't gotten any mail for about three weeks.
As a matter of fact, it's so bad, I have had to advertise in the papers back home telling my people I can't answer your mail because I'm not getting it because of the anthrax scare.
KING: Congressman Chambliss, are they at all optimistic in Atlanta about getting at this thing, where it is coming from?
CHAMBLISS: Well, of course they are not doing the criminal investigation here, Larry, at the CDC. But, certainly, from the standpoint of determining the strain of anthrax, determining how potent it was, which does...
KING: Yes, that's what I meant.
CHAMBLISS: ... which does give you some indication of the source of it. They are making great progress in that area. And they are working hand in hand with the FBI.
I visited with the FBI agent in charge of the anthrax investigation yesterday. And he told me he personally talks to the CDC at least two or three times a day. So they are working very closely together. And I can't say that we are going to break this case in the next day or two. But they are working very closely together.
KING: Congressman Dingell, you were disappointed when the FBI basically told Congress this week that it's -- so far it doesn't have a clue about who is responsible?
DINGELL: No, I wasn't surprised. And very truthfully, I don't expect this is going to be something that will be broken easily or quickly.
If you remember, the Oklahoma bombing was resolved through a very lucky break. We haven't had anything like that here and we may very well not. It may take us a goodly while to get this matter done.
KING: Atlanta, Georgia -- we include a phone call for our congressman -- hello.
CALLER: Hello, I would like to ask the panel if they thought it would be conceivable for President Bush to authorize military action to use a tactical nuclear weapon in Afghanistan, please?
KING: Do you ever see that coming, Congressman Chambliss?
CHAMBLISS: Well, I would be highly surprised if we used any nuclear arsenal in Afghanistan. We don't really need to. We've got the weapons that we need to take out the caves, where we know these folks are hiding. We are going to be able to pinpoint those caves even closer than we have thus far, as soon as we put more ground troops in there on a longer basis, a longer stay basis than what they've done thus far. So I don't envision we will use any nuclear weapons over there.
KING: Congressman Dingell, John Ashcroft, the attorney general who will be on this show tomorrow night, has unveiled a sweeping redesign of federal law enforcement, giving Congress wartime reorganization, shifting 10 percent of resources and jobs from D.C. to the field and other ingredients. Do you favor them?
DINGELL: Well, I think we have to see what he has in mind. I'm hard put at this particular time to say exactly what he proposes. It may very well be it's a great thing, it may well be it's not.
It is the administration's job to propose it. It is the Congress' duty to dispose it. I think we'll have to see what his proposal is.
KING: Congressman Chambliss, you going to come through -- last night -- that Trent Lott predicted there would be a compromise on this aviation security bill and it will happen early this coming week. Do you see that?
CHAMBLISS: Well, I hope so.
You know, the basic difference has been characterized as one of federal versus nonfederal employees. And that really is not the case. As John knows, the bill that we passed on the House side is a transportation security bill. The bill that passed on the Senate side is an airline security bill. And there are different modes of transportation that need be protected in addition to the airlines and we provided for that.
And I hope that our folks will be able to get together in short order. It is not going to be easy. There is going to have to be compromise on both sides. But that is what we are there to do in a bipartisan way. And hopefully it will get done next week.
KING: John, do you think it will?
DINGELL: Well I certainly hope so. I have to say they did a magnificent job of lobbying against the Senate bill which has already been done by Argenbright and by others in the airline security private business. And I think they did us a great disservice. They set back the process, I think, significantly.
I would like to see it move very fast. I think there are things in both bills that are good, but I don't think we can any longer defend the idea that we are having private security agencies that are allowing people with box cutters, mace, with stun guns, with four and six-inch knives and two handguns to get up there at different times to different airline check-in desks, through the security system.
KING: Macon, Georgia -- hello.
CALLER: Good evening, gentlemen.
My question is in reference to the ground troops and this is also the question for Congressman Chambliss. Gentlemen, do you guys see in the future, in the reference to the ground war, do you think we will be sending in more troops or do you think we will just be continuing the ground war with the special forces?
KING: Congressman Chambliss, you want to go first?
CHAMBLISS: I think you are probably going to see this war develop in stages. John and I are not directing the war by any means, but we get briefings on this on a regular basis and within the intelligence committee also. And I think what I have gleaned from that is that we are going to have stages of where commandos go in and pinpoint certain areas of attack. Then, ultimately, we're going to have to have more ground troops going in. And it will be in stages of, probably, a small infantry group going in, they'll probably increase that and, hopefully, we'll get to a point to where we will not need those infantry troops and can wind up with an air campaign in the end.
KING: Touch some other bases -- Congressman Dingell, I believe the area you represent has one of the highest concentrations of Arab- Americans in this country, right?
DINGELL: Well, as a matter of fact, I do. And my Arab people are patriotic Americans and they are as troubled about this matter, I think, as you and I are, Larry.
KING: So how do you deal with this concept of profiling and the like and maybe erosion of civil liberties?
DINGELL: Well, we are going to have a very difficult time of addressing the protection of civil liberties for all Americans, and a particularly difficult time in assuring that we protect the civil liberties of our Arab-American people, or the Muslims, or whether they are Muslims or Christians.
The hard fact of the matter is that wars are never easy places and times in which you can protect civil liberties. Having said that, there is going to be some erosion. We have to see to it that it is no larger than absolutely necessary. And we are going to have to see to it that it is only as long as is necessary to triumph in this very difficult undertaking in which we are he engaged.
KING: Congressman Chambliss, what's your view in that area?
CHAMBLISS: Well, I don't think there is any question, but what we've got to always keep in mind, that we have a Constitution that has served us well for the last 225 years, and we've got to stay within the bounds of that. And if you look at the way that we have approached the anti terrorism situation, I think from a legislative standpoint, we have done that, and we've got to be careful that we don't invade on civil liberties of any group, whether Arabs or nonArabs.
And you know, as the president said any number of times, there are 99.9 percent of the Muslims in this country are law-abiding great Americans. And we can't afford to single them out through any legislation.
KING: Thank you both very much. Always good seeing you. Congressman Saxby Chambliss of Georgia in Atlanta; Congressman John Dingell of Michigan in Washington.
DINGELL: Thank you.
CHAMBLISS: Thank you.
KING: When we come back -- thank you.
Two of the best reporters around, Chris Matthews. the host of MSNBC's "Hardball," author of "Now Let Me Tell You What I Really Think," terrific new book; and Bob Schieffer, the anchor and moderator of "Face The Nation" with Bob Schieffer, he is also CBS's news chief Washington correspondent. They are both next. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: Our great nation's national challenge is to hunt down the terrorists and strengthen our protection against future attacks. Our great national opportunity has preserved forever the good that has resulted. Through this tragedy we are renewing and reclaiming our strong American values.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Joining us now from Chicago, two of my favorite people, Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC's "Hardball," his new book, "Now Let Me Tell You What I Really Think." And in Washington, the anchor and moderator of face the nation, "CBS News" chief Washington correspondent. Don't forget, John Ashcroft will be with us tomorrow night.
Chris, what did you make of the president's address tonight?
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC "HARDBALL": Well, I thought it was a powerful speech. The term you used I think is pretty healthy, "Pep Rally." It wasn't a military briefing, it didn't contain a lot of information. But I think it was a mood-setter. I think, you know, one of the things I think he was trying to do, get people to spend more money, get them to travel more. Let them get back to normalcy. I think that is his real concern behind the scenes, the economy.
KING: Bob Schieffer, if that is true, do you think it worked?
BOB SCHIEFFER, CBS "FACE THE NATION": Perhaps, I thought it was a very good speech. I think in a funny kind of way though, Larry, I think the president was a victim of his own success tonight. The speech that he delivered to the Congress right after all of this happened was such a superb speech. It hit just the right tone. I think it, at that time, reflected exactly how the American people felt and what they wanted to hear.
It was such a good speech I think people will measure this one by that one. And it was not as good as the speech he made that night. It was very good. It was a different thing that the president had to do tonight. On that night he was telling us what he was going to do. Tonight, he was trying to tell us what he has been doing.
And obviously, some of the things that he has been doing have not been going as well as even he might have hoped, I think.
KING: And despite that, Chris, his popularity in the polls remains high. How do you assess -- if that is possible to assess -- the mood of this country now?
MATTHEWS: Well, I think you are right about his job approval. I mean I have never seen numbers like this. He was 92 a month ago, he is 90 percent today, statistically the same. I don't think tonight was to bolster his job approval. I thought there was a wonderful scene though in that room tonight in Georgia, of all those service people.
So many of the visuals we saw were regular people, policemen, firemen, perhaps health workers, a lot of people involved in this fight. And I think he was sort of getting their stuff together, and when he said "let's roll" at the end, I think there is a bit of Churchill in that, in the sense that he was saying, this not the beginning the end, it is perhaps the end of the beginning, he is just starting this war.
I think he needs to reset the clock and that is what he is doing tonight. We are not halfway through a war, we are one month into a war, and most wars last several years. And I think that is what he was trying to tell people.
KING: Every night it seems on this show, Bob, when we have Republicans and Democrats, they always seem to profusely complement each other. How long is that is going to continue?
SCHIEFFER: Well, I don't know, but I was struck by that myself, tonight. What I have noticed, Larry, up on Capitol Hill, is while there is broad support for the president himself, personally, I think those poll numbers are reflected on Capitol Hill as well as out in the country.
And while there is support for what he is doing overseas, you are seeing over and over again, now, a difference over what's to be done about various things on the domestic front, the stimulus package is in big trouble, the airline security bill, there are great differences on that.
A couple of Republicans told me today, said look, we are now getting around to dealing with things that we had differences about before all this happened. And you are seeing those differences there. I'm not seeing the kind of bipartisan spirit on Capitol Hill that we saw in the first days after the attack, I'm sorry to say.
KING: Chris, any analysis of the election results that might have meaning to the current situation?
MATTHEWS: Well, I think that executives of either party are taking on a much larger role in our society, and in our politics. Look at the heroes of the last two months, it was Giuliani, the president, Pataki to some extent. Of course, Gray Davis trying to get in the act a bit with his concerns about the bridges out there.
But I thought that the victory of Michael Bloomberg was something that clearly wouldn't have happened two months ago. The job description of Mayor of New York stopped being "who is the best politician," to would, certainly Mark Green is a pro, to "who is an executive with proven success in the business field who can help get New York back on its feet."
I think the people have changed the job description right now for the foreseeable future of politicians.
KING: How, Bob, did the Republicans lose a rock rib (ph) state like Virginia?
SCHIEFFER: Well, I think in that particular case, I think the Democrats just had a better candidate. The Republican candidate in that race really kind of never got it going. The Democrat moved to the center, he almost moved to the right of center. He seemed to me to be very much in tune with kind of the philosophy of Virginia, at this point in our history.
And I think he simply ran a better campaign. I'm not sure that I would draw too much out of the results of that race in Virginia as to how it will affect anything in the future. I'm not sure it will. But I would say this -- I would say this, I totally agree with Chris on the election in New York. I think that the New York election, what it is basically, is a way that New Yorkers wanted to say thanks, Mayor Giuliani for doing the very good job. And I think Mr. Bloomberg would not have been elected had not all of this happened.
MATTHEWS: You know, and Larry, there is a bit of deception in the president's speech tonight, I don't want to be too difficult on him, but I think -- given the current mood -- but there is a real problem in what he said. Remember he said tonight he was going to federalize the baggage scanning at the airports. He is not actually going to do that. That is what the Senate, the bipartisan vote in the Senate is for doing. The House vote, which is the Republican controlled body, wants to basically keep it a private sector initiative.
Clearly when he says federalizing, he doesn't mean nationalize or give it to federal employees, so I think there is some deception there. I think we are going to end up having something like a federal force of people to check our baggage, which I think is good, but the president was not honest or candid about that tonight. It sounds like he is hedging his bets.
KING: Tampa, Florida, as we include a phone call, hello.
CALLER: Yes, good afternoon, Larry.
CALLER: This is Sam Harrison, Tampa, Florida. And my question is, is the United States government going to continue to issue bailouts for area industries that are private industries, that are benefitting from the taxpayers money to issue whatever grants or warrants they feel the industry needs to have to stay afloat?
KING: Bob, I think the only one thus far has been the airline industry, right?
SCHIEFFER: Well, that is right, but now you have the Postal Service that came to the Congress today and said, we are going to need $5 billion. I think at this point all of those questions are up in the air, because the Congress, right now, both the Senate and the House are trying to decide on how to come together on some sort of a stimulus package. And they are far apart on that.
There is also a great disagreement about whether to put into effect some sort of spending program just for government spending. The president says he will veto any of that. I think the answer is, nobody really knows on that front at this point.
KING: We will take a break and come back with more of Chris Matthews and Bob Schieffer. Tomorrow night, John Ashcroft will be with us, so will Queen Rania of Jordan. And at the end of the show tonight, Enya, the Irish singer and musician will have an incredible performance for you, assisted by a chorus and violins, right over here. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: We will never forget all we have lost and all we are fighting for. Ours is the cause of freedom. We have defeated freedom enemies before, and we will defeat them again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: We are back with Chris Matthews. His new book, by the way, "Now Let Me Tell You What I Really Think," is a humdinger of a good read; and Bob Schieffer, the anchor and moderator of "Face the Nation" is with us as well.
Gentlemen, New York rolled out a new ad today, a montage ad. Mayor Rudy Giuliani put it forward public as a public service ad campaign. It is a 30 second TV commercial saluting the spirit of New York to encourage people to come there during the holiday season. Let's watch a little and get your thoughts.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, ADVERTISEMENT FOR NEW YORK CITY)
WOODY ALLEN, FILM DIRECTOR, ACTOR: You are not going to believe this. That was the first time I put on ice skates in my life.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Name?
BARBARA WALTERS, JOURNALIST: Barbara Walters.
(singing): (UNINTELLIGIBLE) dancing feet on the avenue I'm taking you to: 42nd street.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: NEXT!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, I'll have the Ben Stiller.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One Ben Stiller.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, could I get that with Bacon?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With Bacon? You got it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, Stiller, table 3 -- with Bacon! .
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everyone has a New York dream. Come find yours.
ROBERT DENIRO, ACTOR: What's the matter?
BILLY CRYSTAL, COMEDIAN: You know what's the matter. I'm unhappy.
DENIRO: You agreed to play the turkey.
CRYSTAL: Never agreed. Why would I agree to be the turkey?
DENIRO: You know, it is not a big deal. All do you is, you know, cluck, cluck, cluck, cluck, and...
CRYSTAL: First all, we don't cluck, we gobble, OK?
DENIRO: I stand corrected.
CRYSTAL: And if it is not such a big deal, why don't you be the turkey? DENIRO: You want me to be the turkey?
CRYSTAL: Yeah, come on.
DENIRO: You want me to be the turkey?
DENIRO: I don't think so.
MAYOR RUDOLPH GIULIANI (R), NEW YORK: The New York miracle. Be a part of it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Chris, what do you think of that?
MATTHEWS: I love it. I love New York, actually, and I love going there this time of year especially, and I usually bring my dad up here. I have to tell you that that ad works for me.
KING: Me, too. Bob, it is almost a genius ad, isn't it.
SCHIEFFER: They are wonderful. There is also one that shows Henry Kissinger circling the bases at Yankee Stadium, and he does a head first slide. That was my favorite. I mean the Yankees are worried about what about next year. Well, it looks like they have got Kissinger. He can come in and be a pinch runner.
MATTHEWS: You know, it was great, Larry, that the Yankees won all the home games and I tell you, winning at home, I think that was the spirit of the speech tonight -- winning at home. And I think it wasn't about the evildoers, as president calls the terrorists, it is about us and how well we can all work together.
That spirit I talked about of the firemen that did so much to give the president his legitimacy in this fight, was on display tonight. It wasn't as good a speech as the last one before Congress, but I think the message is changing to, not who we are up against, but who we are. And I think this New York thing is so much of that, too.
KING: Marengo, Iowa, hello.
CALLER: Hello, Larry, we are way out here in the middle of nowhere. And, we really are concerned about what's going on. I am just wondering what happened to Vice President Cheney for Bob, to let me know. Maybe he has some information.
KING: OK, Bob, the sometimes-missing vice president.
SCHIEFFER: Well, you know, part of that time when they said he was at an undisclosed location, apparently he had taken off a couple days to go hunting. So I don't guess you can blame a fellow for doing that when the pheasant are running or whatever they do.
KING: What do you make of it? SCHIEFFER: Well, I think he is working. And I think the vice president is doing what he has always done in this administration, is to kind of be a behind-the-scenes adviser, so that is OK with me.
KING: Chris, open your history books. You got any example of this in the past?
MATTHEWS: Well, I think what I know of the history of this country is that there are times, as Harry Truman said, that we are this country. That was his phrase -- not the government, not the politicians, but we are united almost in a splendid fashion. It is not just a 90 percent approval rating of the president's job performance, it is the national mission right now.
KING: No, I mean, anything historical about a vice president sort of -- not being around.
MATTHEWS: No. Go way back to Lincoln, go back to Lincoln's vice president, the first one, Hannibal Hamlin just went back to Maine after he was elected vice president. They didn't have any role back then.
But since Nixon was elevated by Ike into a very important role and of course, Mondale got the first office in the West Wing, and then on and on until we had Gore being very important, to Cheney being almost, almost a prime minister, a behind-the-scenes chief of staff, certainly a real staffer to the president, not just a partner.
I think Cheney is probably the most powerful V.P. in history, but he cannot appear that way. And I think he has to be off the scene for him to be as effective, because every time he comes out front, I think it hurts the president.
KING: Bob Schieffer, is the war not going well, less than anticipated? What? There are mixed messages.
SCHIEFFER: Well, I'm not sure it is going as well as they would like for it to go, but I don't know how well it can go. I mean, when you think about what we are trying to do here, I mean these are people that are taking refuge in caves. I saw some tape today of this cavalry charge, people riding on horseback. We keep getting reports of headquarters in and training camps that are destroyed.
I remember in Vietnam, when they talked about, you know, enemy headquarters that were being knocked out. This war is not going to be about who knocks down whose toolshed. We are going to know we have won when these people come out of the caves with their hands up, when we can open a letter without wondering if it is going to kill us.
And that may take a while. It may not be apparent for a while. I don't think military is to be criticized here, but I don't think this is going as well as maybe some in the White House had hoped it would in the early days.
KING: Chris, did the Gulf War spoil people? MATTHEWS: Well, it was a big force, heavily armored, heavily supported. It was a half a million ground troops with all the support they could bring having based their operation with Desert Shield before Desert Storm. This one is almost a charge of the light brigade. It is a very light operation. It is basically being airlifted, men being airlifted from ships. That means a very light combat operation. It is very exquisite. it might work. But it certainly doesn't have that overwhelming force that general Powell always said he wants in combat.
SCHIEFFER: Larry, could I say one other thing?
KING: Quickly, Bob.
SCHIEFFER: I think that Sam Nunn made a very good point when he said we are going to have to find some way, pretty quickly, to get some humanitarian aid in there because we are bombing in there. If we run the risk now of people starving to death, the Muslim world is going to blame us for that. We are not going -- we know it is not our fault, but that is not the way it is going to be seen there. And I think that is critical to figure out what to do there.
KING: He made that tonight.
Thank you both very much. We'll have you back again frequently -- Chris Matthews and Bob Schieffer.
Now you stay tuned because Enya is coming and you are not going to believe this extraordinary talent with a group she's got set up there.
As we go to break, they mentioned the Kissinger commercial from New York, watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, ADVERTISEMENT)
ANNOUNCER: Everyone has a New York dream. Come find yours.
HENRY KISSINGER, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: Derek who?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey you, get out of here.
RUDOLPH GIULIANI, MAYOR, NEW YORK CITY: The New York miracle -- be a part of it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: We're back. We were singing Irish ditties together, Enya and I, the brilliant singer and musician, one of Ireland's great gifts to the world.
She's going to do a great song for us tonight. And that song will be released as a single. It's called "Only Time", on November 20, all the proceeds are going to go to the firefighters, right?
ENYA, SINGER: Yes it is.
KING: What a wonderful idea, Enya. It's a great -- you write all your own stuff, right?
ENYA: Yes, I do. I do -- I write my own music. I have done it from the beginning. I've worked on soundtrack and then I was approached to write a solo album and (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
KING: Anything behind the writing of "Only Time?"
ENYA: It is to do -- a lot of the themes that I write about, they're to do with nature and of life. You know, it is to do with, you know, never to lose sight of, you know, what's around you and what's important.
KING: And do you always play your own piano.
KING: And work with your violins and chorus -- this is quite a set up here.
ENYA: It is.
KING: You speak Gaelic, don't you?
ENYA: It's my first language.
KING: Give me a quick something in Gaelic.
ENYA: (SPEAKING IN GAELIC)
KING: I hope you are right.
KING: Ladies and gentlemen, here is an extraordinary talent with a great song. Again, November 20 for the firefighters -- it will be released as a single.
Here is Enya and the group and "Only Time."
(MUSIC, ENYA, "ONLY TIME")
KING: To learn more about upcoming guests, you can log onto our Web site at cnn.com/larryking.
Tomorrow night on LARRY KING LIVE, the attorney general of the United States, John Ashcroft, will join us, so will Queen Rania of Jordan.
We hope you enjoyed tonight's program and that musical piece which ended it -- wow.
We've got another great line-up of guests coming all next week when we are in New York City. So therefore, we will be right there with our compatriot, Aaron Brown, the host of "NEWSNIGHT", who appears to be out to break a world Guinness record for appearing on the air in one day. Here's Aaron in New York.
TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com