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CNN INSIDE POLITICS

CIA Chief Warns of More Terrorist Threats; Congress Reviews Campaign Finance Reform

Aired February 6, 2002 - 16:00   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.
JUDY WOODRUFF, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Judy Woodruff in Washington. A chilling reminder from the CIA chief about the terrorist threats that are still out there.

KELLY WALLACE, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I'm Kelly Wallace with the president in New York, where Mr. Bush's message today about homeland security hits close to home.

KATE SNOW, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Kate Snow on Capitol Hill, taking a look at campaign finance reform. Will it pass this time around? We'll look at the battle lines, ahead of next week's house vote.

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SR. POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Candy Crowley. On Ronald Reagan's 91st birthday, he is far removed from politics, but still quite a force here in Washington.

ANNOUNCER: Live from Washington, this is INSIDE POLITICS with Judy Woodruff.

WOODRUFF: Thank you for joining us. We do begin with the war on terrorism: the latest from court and from Capitol Hill. John Walker Lindh today was denied his request to be released on bond. A federal magistrate in suburban Maryland ruled that Walker Lindh is a flight risk and represents a danger to the community. The American, accused of fighting with the Taliban and al Qaeda, faces arraignment Monday on a 10-count indictment issued by a grand jury yesterday.

Meantime, on Capitol Hill today, CIA director George Tenet warned that terrorists are continuing, in his words, "to plan multiple attacks" against the United States. And the upcoming Olympics could be a target.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE TENET, CIA DIRECTOR: High-profile events, such as the Olympics or last weekend's Super Bowl also fit the terrorists' interest in striking another blow within the United States, that would command worldwide media attention.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WOODRUFF: In his testimony, Tenet defended his agency against criticism by some lawmakers, who demanded to know why the CIA failed to prevent the September 11th attacks.

Now we turn from security concerns to political concerns, regarding Friday's opening of the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. The International Olympic Committee announced today that U.S. athletes will be able to carry a tattered flag from New York's Ground Zero in the opening ceremony, although not as a part of the main procession.

The athletes will be joined by an honor guard of police officers and firefighters. The IOC originally refused to allow the athletes to carry the flag, because some feared the appearance of jingoism at the international event.

President Bush travels to Salt Lake City this Friday to participate in the Olympic opening ceremonies. Today he is back in New York, focusing on homeland defense and some money matters. Our White House correspondent, Kelly Wallace, is with the president in New York. Hello, Kelly.

WALLACE: Hello to you, Judy. Well, President Bush wrapping up three days of road trips to build support for his budget. Today, his focus on efforts to prevent another terrorist attack in the United States. Aides say, what better place to go than where it all began on September 11th, New York City.

The president trying to highlight the work of so-called first responders, the police officers, the firefighters, the rescue workers, the people first on the scene on September 11th. The individuals that are the first to respond if there is another terrorist attack. Mr. Bush saying his next year budget will include $3.5 billion for first responders, for more equipment, more training -- that's a tenfold increase over this year's budget.

The president, though, also using this visit to put to rest a little bit of a controversy. The president, some lawmakers questioning whether he will give New York City $20 billion to rebuild. The president, in essence saying today, a promise made is a promise kept.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I want you to know something: when I say I'm going to do something, I'm going to do it. I told the people of New York that we will work to provide at least $20 billion to help New York rebuild herself. And that includes money apart from the victims' compensation fund. And when I say 20, I mean 20.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: There was some concern of lawmakers that $5 billion the government is giving to victims of the September 11th attacks, that that money would come out of the $20 billion. Clearly, Judy, the president trying to put that to rest. Say New York will get $20 billion, and that victim compensation fund, that $5 billion, is separate from that -- Judy.

WOODRUFF: Kelly, we know the president tonight, taking part in a fund-raising event for some other Republicans. Who's involved and how much are they raising?

WALLACE: Well, there are two fund-raisers -- in fact, four. New York Governor George Pataki, who is running for reelection. One fundraiser is being held at the private home of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Another one at this hotel here. We're told close to $2 million expected to come in.

Judy, what's interesting, you remember during the presidential campaign, Mr. Bush got just about 35 percent of the vote in New York state. His approval numbers were not that great before September 11th. But his ratings are very, very high in this city, in this state. Clearly Republican strategists believe the president can bring in the votes and bring in the money for the 2002 elections -- Judy.

WOODRUFF: All right, Kelly Wallace, who will also be working tonight, we gather. Thanks, Kelly.

WALLACE: Sure.

WOODRUFF: Well, on Capitol Hill the political maneuvering over campaign finance reform is intensifying, now that a House vote on the issue is expected next week. Our Congressional correspondent, Kate Snow, is here now with an update on the arm-twisting and the nose- counting, and all the rest of it. Hi, Kate.

SNOW: Hi, Judy. Well, those who support this campaign finance reform say they can feel the momentum. They say for years now, they have been pushing to get big money out of politics. But the thing that they see now is the crash of corporate giant, which they say may be the last straw.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

REP. MARTIN MEEHAN (D), MASSACHUSETTS: As we look at the Enron scandal and realize the incredible access that they had to the powers that be in Washington, to both political parties, the public is demanding we do something about it.

SNOW (voice-over): But that doesn't mean the vote will be easy. Both sides are hedging.

REP. RICHARD GEPHARDT (D-MO), MINORITY LEADER: The Republican leadership in the House is going to fight it tooth and nail.

SNOW: Democrats worry the 20 Republicans who signed a petition to force a vote on reform will cave under pressure from their leadership. But a bigger challenge may come from within: convincing members of the Congressional black caucus to vote for the bill. Two- thirds of that group signed the campaign finance petition, but 1/3 didn't. They worry that cutting out unregulated soft money would put inner-city candidates at a disadvantage, and hurt their ability to do voter education and "get out the vote" drives. Privately, Democrats say the vote count doesn't look good. But Republicans are lowering expectations, too. The last two times campaign finance reform passed in the House, more than 50 Republicans voted for it.

REP. TOM DELAY (R-TX), MAJORITY WHIP: I'm hoping we can convince our members to vote against the bill. Unfortunately, that hasn't been very successful in the past. My prediction is the bill probably will pasS.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SNOW: The challenge for Republicans is convincing their own moderates, and also Democrats, THAT this is not the way to reform campaign finance. And also, that this time their vote really matters. They can't sort of expect the Senate to go ahead and defeat this bill. As you know, Judy, the Senate passed this bill last summer. There's nothing to fall on now. If they pass it now, the president had indicated he'll sign it -- Judy.

WOODRUFF: Yes, indeed. And, Kate, if it were to pass, when would it take effect?

SNOW: There's some debate about that. Right now, the bill says 30 days after it is signed into law, it goes into effect. And the sponsors say they want to keep it that way. But they have debated maybe moving the effective date, because of course, we're in the middle of a campaign season right now.

And they say if it gets to the point where they lose this vote, they may be able to attract votes by delaying the effective date until a little bit later. They don't want to do it, they say, but they might. Republicans, on the other hand, say that absolutely shouldn't happen. That the date should be 30 days after. They say that for the opposite reason, to try to not attract those votes over to the other side -- Judy.

WOODRUFF: All right, Kate Snow at the Capitol, thanks.

Also on the Hill today, a democratic economic stimulus bill was blocked by Senate Republicans, who then lost a vote on their own stimulus plan. The Senate did approve a measure to extend jobless benefits for 13 weeks. In New York, President Bush said, at a minimum, both chambers of Congress must do something to help Americans who've lost their job.

But a broader plan to provide recession relief appears destined now to end in gridlock. Here now, our senior political analyst, Bill Schneider -- Bill.

WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SR. POLITICAL ANALYST: To quote Sherlock Holmes, a famous political analyst, "This is a case of the dog that did not bark." There is no economic stimulus bill, because there is no overwhelming demand in the country for an economic stimulus bill.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BUSH: (AUDIO GAP)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: OK. Well, what happened is, Senate Democrats tried to give themselves cover by voting for an extension of jobless benefits for the unemployed. But the fact is, the economic stimulus bill passed because the public's -- the polling of the public showed that there was no strong demand for it. And Alan Greenspan went before the Senate last week, or actually two weeks ago. And he said an economic stimulus bill really isn't needed, because the economy is going to recover on its own. And you know what? Most people think the economy will recover on its own.

WOODRUFF: And without a lot of people pushing for it, it's not going to happen.

SCHNEIDER: That's right. And of course, if the economy doesn't recover, then President Bush has an issue. "The Senate Democrats killed my stimulus bill. Give me a Republican Senate."

WOODRUFF: All right, Bill Schneider. And we apologize about that audio problem. We'll try to get it fixed. But we appreciate it. Thank you. Those things happen.

Tributes and memories on Ronald Reagan's 91st birthday, coming up next.

Former House ways and means chairman Dan Rostenkowski goes "On the Record" with us, with his political war stories about the former president.

We look back at "Dutch" Reagan's early days, and get an update on how he's doing now, from former longtime aide, Mike Deaver.

And later, Howard Dean for president? I'll ask the Vermont governor about his travels today in New Hampshire, and the prospects of 2004. This is INSIDE POLITICS.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: "On the Record" today: the life and the political legacy of Ronald Reagan. Mr. Reagan turned 91 years old today. His daughter, Patti Davis, joined the former president and his wife, Nancy, for chocolate cake at their Bel Air, California home. A spokeswoman says Mr. Reagan is -- quote -- "doing as well as can be expected."

In a moment, I will be joined by two men who worked with Ronald Reagan at the height of his career. But first, an inside look at his political reach, from CNN senior political correspondent, Candy Crowley.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, 1991) RONALD REAGAN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REAGAN: We will never forget them. Nor the last time we saw them, this morning, as they prepared for their journey and waved goodbye, and slipped the surly bonds of earth, to touch the face of God.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CROWLEY (voice-over): It has been more than a decade since we last heard his voice, but the legacy of Ronald Reagan echoes clearly. His name is woven into the political lexicon.

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I am a proud Reagan conservative.

CROWLEY: He shaped a generation of Republicans, who argue over his mantel.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. ORRIN HATCH (R), UTAH: I know Ronald Reagan. I helped elect him. I went to 36 states for him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator, you may know Ronald Reagan, but I worked for him for eight years.

HATCH: So did I.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was at the cabinet table with him.

HATCH: I worked for him for 23 years.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CROWLEY: In some ways, the Reagan years were a milepost along the country's road -- the beginning of the end of the Soviet Union. The beginning of the beginning of the downsizing of the federal government, which by '96, was a given.

WILLIAM J. CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The era of big government is over.

CROWLEY: Critics and admirers of President Reagan agree on this much: his echo is clearest inside the White House of the 43rd president.

BUSH: States like these and their terrorist allies constitute an axis of evil.

CROWLEY: For George Bush, it is al Qaeda. For Ronald Reagan, it was the Soviet Union. REAGAN: They are the focus of evil in the modern world.

CROWLEY: Separated by 12 years, faced with different enemies, President Reagan and this President Bush are diplomatic soul mates, sharing a worldview that frames their conflicts in terms of good and evil, for reasons beyond the rhetorical.

SEN. TRENT LOTT (R-MS), MINORITY LEADER: What he did in the defense area -- the "evil empire" speech, in retrospect, was accurate and brilliant. And it led to us building up our defense. It led to the Soviet Union imploding.

CROWLEY: Both Ronald Reagan and George Bush are also devotees of the tax cut as economic stimulus. And so it was, that on the occasion of Ronald Reagan's 91st birthday, his legacy still drove the debate on Capitol Hill.

REP. TOM DELAY (R-TX), MAJORITY WHIP: What we're talking about here today is Ronald Reagan's legacy. You don't raise taxes in the face of a recession. You cut taxes to get the economy going again.

SEN. TOM DASCHLE (D-SD), MAJORITY LEADER: We are repeating, in many cases, the same mistakes made in 1981 and '82. I fear that we are going to see deficits every bit as large as the ones created in 1982.

CROWLEY: There is, as well, an echo of Reagan style that runs through the Bush White House.

REAGAN: I have only one thing to say to the tax increasers: Go ahead, make my day.

(LAUGHTER)

CROWLEY: It is a kind of everyman approach to the language, a Western swagger.

BUSH: There's an old poster out West, as I recall, that said, "Wanted: Dead or Alive."

CROWLEY: It is an ability to capture a policy in a phrase that resonates beyond nuance. Candy Crowley, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WOODRUFF: Joining me now to talk more about the career and the legacy of Ronald Reagan is a man who observed the former president firsthand, often in opposition, other times in cooperation. He is former Democratic Congressman Dan Rostenkowski, of Illinois.

Mr. Rostenkowski, Mike Deaver told me today that he remembers your saying, "a handshake with Ronald Reagan would last a week." First of all, did you say it? And what did you mean by that?

DAN ROSTENKOWSKI (D), FMR. U.S. REPRESENTATIVE: Well, there were times then, Judy, where people talked with forked tongue. And when Ronald Reagan proposed the '86 tax cut, I called Don Regan and I said, "I'd like to talk to the president." And of course, there was every excuse in the world not to see the president. I said, well, Don, if you're watching the morning shows tomorrow, I'll be on and I'll be telling the world that I can't get to see the president, and I'm the chairman of the ways and means committee.

Well, the door swung open, and I went in to see President Reagan. Sat with him for, supposedly, 10 minutes, that turned into about 45. And talked about what he wanted to do and how serious he was about the tax reduction act of 1986.

I told him what I would like to do, but I wanted to know that he was going to support me, and that he was going to be on the phone with the Republicans, if necessary,to help what he was proposing. Well, we shook hands. And he called in Don Regan, who was in the hall sweating a bit, because I'd spent so much time with him. I might add that Ronald Reagan did all the talking.

But I said to him, I said, Mr. President, you tell Don Regan. And Ronald Reagan said to Don, "I want this young man to have my telephone number. I want to be able to talk to him. I want to work with him. And," he says, "and there's my hand on it." And, Judy, I never felt better in my life, because I knew that we were kind of cut out of the same cloth, and that a handshake was very important.

WOODRUFF: So his word was good.

ROSTENKOWSKI: Absolutely.

WOODRUFF: What about his legacy? A lot being made today of how George W. Bush is carrying the banner of Ronald Reagan, whether it's tax cuts or the axis of evil. How do you see the Reagan legacy?

ROSTENKOWSKI: Well, Reagan had kind of tunnel vision about how he wanted government to function. There were two things that I think brought Ronald Reagan to the presidency and made him committed to the service. And one was to eradicate the evil empire, get down the Berlin Wall. Two was to lower taxes.

And he didn't have a platform of 20 or 30 different things. Those were two things that Ronald Reagan, with tunnel vision -- and I say that complimentary -- to do. And, as a matter of fact, we often went up to the private quarters and had dinner with the president, when Nancy was in California. And we'd all bring a story.

But on this one occasion, I was seated alongside the president, he says, so you're Dan the tax man. I said, "Yes, sir, Mr. President."

He said, "Well, Dan, you know, we have to cut to the marginal rate."

I said, "Well, Mr. President, I couldn't agree with you more. As a matter of fact, I was in Chicago and I made a speech to the Chamber of Commerce that we ought to do something about revenues," and that a tax cut could possibly be seen. He said, "Well, Dan, I have to tell you something. When I was in films, I paid 92 percent top marginal rate." And, Judy, I looked at my soup, I picked up my head and looked at the president, and the president looked at me and he said, "Well, What's so funny?"

I said, "Nothing, Mr. President."

"No, damn it, Dan. You laughed, so what's so funny?"

I said, "Well, frankly, Mr. President, I didn't think you were that good an actor." He laughed like heck.

(LAUGHTER)

ROSTENKOWSKI: But there was a quality about Ronald Reagan that made you feel a great affection for him.

WOODRUFF: Let me ask you this. What endures of him today in this country? You talked about taxes. You talked about the evil empire. What is still with us, of Ronald Reagan?

ROSTENKOWSKI: I think what Ronald Reagan will be best known for is that he stood as an individual, fighting communism, fighting the Kremlin, not afraid to call it the evil empire, which was a very bold step in those days. And I think that that, in great measure, will be what a lot of people will remember.

But there's more to Ronald Reagan that that, and I say this with great envy, almost, because Ronald Reagan revised Social Security. Ronald Reagan passed a trade bill. But more importantly today, the Congress is fighting over whether they're going to have prescription drugs. In 1987, we did a catastrophic health bill with Dr. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) of Indiana, who was then secretary of HEW, Ronald Reagan as president, and he signed it. To my chagrin, a year later after the election of George Bush, there was a repeal and they repealed it. But think of the foresight of this man. He signed domestic legislation that today we can't pass.

WOODRUFF: Would you like to wish him happy birthday? Perhaps he or Mrs. Reagan are watching.

ROSTENKOWSKI: Listen, Judy, Ronald Reagan, in his company, it was a treasure. And, Nancy, I love you. And I hope everything is -- well, as well as can be.

WOODRUFF: All right. Dan Rostenkowski. Thank you very much. It's so good to see you again. We appreciate it.

ROSTENKOWSKI: Thanks.

WOODRUFF: A little while ago, I spoke with Michael Deaver, as I mentioned, a longtime Reagan friend and political adviser. We talked about Mr. Reagan's political accomplishments. I also asked him about Mr. Reagan's health, and how Nancy Reagan is handling the challenge of caring for her husband.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

Mike Deaver, thank you for joining us.

MICHAEL DEAVER, FORMER REAGAN DEP. CHIEF OF STATE: You bet.

WOODRUFF: Have you talked to Mrs. Reagan? How is the former president doing?

Well, you know, it's a progressive disease. It's not going to get better. But she seems to be doing fine. She's there 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can't get her out of there. The one thing I do know about him is that he's got the best love and care you could ever have.

WOODRUFF: How would you say how far this has progressed?

DEAVER: I don't know. I can't. Judy, I got to tell you. I stopped asking. It isn't, you know, I haven't seen him for three years or so. I know he's comfortable, I know he's well. Every once in a while I say, how's the president today? Says, oh, he's doing fine. And you know, this is such a private thing between the two of them. It always has been. And I respect that.

WOODRUFF: His 91st birthday. How is she handling all this, do you think?

DEAVER: Well, I think she loves the fact that he's recognized every year, and that people remember. And that it's not just her remembrance. It's -- the world remembers it and celebrates it.

WOODRUFF: What about the legacy of this -- of President Ronald Reagan, as it lives today in the presidency of George W. Bush? What do you see?

DEAVER: There were numerous accomplishments. But one of the greatest was getting Americans to believe in themselves again. We'd been through Watergate and Vietnam, and Reagan helped us believe in ourselves again. And also, to believe in the presidency again, as an important place. And I see so many similarities between the young George Bush we have today as president, and Ronald Reagan. They're both westerners, they're both ranchers. They both are underestimated. And they both have -- appear to have a very firm steel rod down their back, with a set of values that they're not going to move from.

WOODRUFF: President Reagan also talked about the evil empire. George w. Bush talks about the axis of evil. Do you see a connection, when it comes to international affairs?

DEAVER: I do see a connection. I think both this president we have today and Ronald Reagan had an experienced team of foreign policy people around them. They weren't people who were going to get caught short when we had an emergency.

They both had -- no one believed, but they did have a global view. They knew at least the values of what was right and wrong. And Reagan was criticized. A lot of people don't remember, but he was criticized for his evil empire remark, just as this president is now being criticized by some of the same people here and in Europe about the evil axis. I don't think it -- I know it didn't bother Ronald Reagan. And I'm sure it doesn't bother this president either.

WOODRUFF: And one other thing about Ronald Reagan, his belief in a transcendent America, America as the most powerful, enduring, not just country, but set of beliefs.

DEAVER: For him, it was a spiritual thing. He actually believed that there was a reason that this land had been placed here, between the two oceans, as he used to say, by a larger power.

And he thought there was something very special about it. He believed that there was divine guidance for this country. And a lot of people thought that was corny, but that was his belief. I sense that there is some of the same of that in George Bush, that he has a very firm belief and a set of spiritual principles. And I think Reagan and he would have a great time, if they could, sitting down and talking about some of these things.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WOODRUFF: That was Michael Deaver, the longtime friend and adviser to Ronald Reagan.

Well, appropriate to the day, earlier this day, President Bush signed legislation making Ronald Reagan's boyhood home a federal historic sight. House Speaker Dennis Hastert sponsored the legislation. The home is in Dixon, Illinois, which is part of Hastert's district. On this memorable day, we have a closer look at some rare photos from Ronald Reagan's early years.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(voice-over): Childhood snapshots beautifully laid out in a new book, "Ronald Reagan: The Presidential Portfolio," by biographer Lou Cannon. Here's Reagan as a baby in Tampico, Illinois, his nickname, Dutch -- a coin set commemorating his birth.

His father wrote: "Who knows? He might grow up to be president some day." There's 4-year-old Reagan standing next to his mother, Nelle, the great influence of his early life. And in the third grade, he's the boy with his hand on his chin. The Reagans lived in rented houses. He later said: "We didn't live on the wrong side of the tracks, but we lived so close to them we could hear the whistle real loud."

Reagan spent his teenage years in Dixon, Illinois. He played football and worked as a lifeguard, famously rescuing 27 people from drowning. In 1928, he graduated high school. Next to his yearbook photo, a line from a poem: "Life is just one grand, sweet song. So start the music."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) WOODRUFF: A number of Democrats are trying to generate some early 2004 presidential campaign buzz. But how are there bottom lines? Well, we have been combing financial records of their political action committees and, when applicable, their reelection committees.

In the second half of 2001, Senator John Kerry raised the most money, almost $1.7 million. Senator John Edwards raised slightly over $1 million. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle and House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt raised a little under $1 million. Senator Joe Lieberman pulled in more than $600,000, not quite double the money raised by his partner on the 2000 Democratic ticket, Al Gore.

Senator Chris Dodd and Vermont Governor Howard Dean trailed the pack in the money that they raised. And you can see the numbers right there. Governor Dean made the short hop from his home state to New Hampshire today. And he joins us now from Manchester to talk about his trip and his political future.

Governor Dean, $111,000, would you like to have raised more that?

GOV. HOWARD DEAN (D), VERMONT: Absolutely not. We did that in a month, all from Vermont. I thought that was pretty good.

WOODRUFF: Well, tell me, how serious are you about this campaign for president?

DEAN: Well, right now, I'm not running for president. I have a political action committee that allows me to go around the country talking about some of the things I really care about. I think this country ought to have universal health insurance. I think we ought to invest a lot more money than we're investing in young children.

And I think we ought to have a balanced budget, with the priorities instead of being tax cuts for people who make than $350,000 a year, the priorities ought to be rebuilding schools and roads, which are, incidentally, being cut in the current budget. And that is what I'll be talking about as I travel to New Hampshire and other places. But I don't expect to have any decisions about what I am going to do in the future until I leave this office, which will be in January of 2003.

WOODRUFF: Governor, how do you keep your name out there against these other Democrats, who are, a lot of them, in the Senate? They are getting coverage fairly regularly here in Washington, where there's so much news media. You're up there in Vermont as the governor. It's an important state, like the other 49, but you're not in the news every day like they are. How do you deal with that?

DEAN: I don't worry about it. I'm going to let the message take care of itself. I think I have got something to say. And I don't think what I have to say is being said by anybody else.

I do think we need to start investing in young kids. I do think we need a universal health care system. We have something approaching that in Vermont, but we can't do it without the federal government. And, above all, I'm more conservative than George Bush is about balancing the budget, which I think probably nobody else shares with me on the ticket.

WOODRUFF: What do you mean?

DEAN: I don't think you ought to run deficits. We've eliminated them here. We now have the best bond rating in New England. And our debt has gone down 25 percent since 1996. I think the way the administration and Congress are going in terms of running budget deficits is a big, big mistake. You can't give $1.3 trillion tax cuts if you can't balance the budget.

WOODRUFF: Governor, the Democratic Party has decided to move up the dates of some of the early primaries, so-called front-loading. Does this not hurt candidates like you whose names are not as well- known as some of these other Democrats who are expressing an interest in running for president?

DEAN: I actually think it hurts the Democratic Party as a whole, because I've seen this before. I've been active in Democratic politics since 1980. And what I've seen in the past under circumstances like this is, when somebody with lots of name recognition and money comes in, locks up the nomination, and then there's buyer's remorse in the Democratic Party for the next six or eight weeks and other people start winning in the primaries.

We saw that in 1976, when Frank Church starting winning primaries late in the game. We have seen it, actually, even in 1992, when Jerry Brown beat Bill Clinton in late primaries. So I don't think it serves the Democratic Party well. But it's the DNC's call. And the chairman certainly is going to control the DNC. And I have to respect that decision.

WOODRUFF: Governor, one last question. I'm curious: What's the question you get most often when you're in New Hampshire and you're going around talking to voters?

DEAN: I think the question that people are most concerned of all is: What's going to happen to our children? What is the real long- term future of the country? And what are we going to do about things like deficits and better schools and roads? People are horrified when I tell them that I think the current budget proposed by President Bush is actually going to reduce the number of jobs.

WOODRUFF: So that's the question they ask you when they stop you on the street?

DEAN: When I talk to people, that's what they're most concerned about, is the future. And, mostly, it has to do with kids and education.

WOODRUFF: All right, Governor Howard Dean in the state of Vermont visiting New Hampshire today -- Governor, good to see you. We appreciate your talking with us.

DEAN: Thanks, Judy.

WOODRUFF: Thank you.

And now checking the headlines in our "Campaign News Daily": Vice President Cheney heading outside the Beltway to help House Republicans raise money. The vice president is attending a fund-raiser tonight for Indiana Congressman John Hostettler. Tomorrow, he plans to help two GOP House members in Kentucky.

New Hampshire's Democratic governor, Jeanne Shaheen, said today that she will run for the Senate. Shaheen confirmed speculation that she will go after the seat currently held by Republican Bob Smith.

In Florida, Janet Reno says her health will not slow her campaign for governor. Reno made those comments -- well, you didn't get to hear them, but she made some comments about it, saying that her health is not going to affect her campaigning when she was in Tallahassee yesterday, where she met with top state Democrats at the capital. We're sorry about that.

Back here in Washington, the beginning of Enron hearings by multiple committees in the House and Senate caught the attention of our senior analyst, Jeff Greenfield.

JEFF GREENFIELD, CNN SR. ANALYST: Judy, you know, for the serious among us, the Enron hearings raise many portentous questions: Were there laws violated? Were there regulations violated? Were there crimes committed? And will this cause political damage and, if so, to who?

But for me, these hearings mean something else. They are another chapter in one of the longest-running daytime entertainment spectacles in television history: the congressional investigation.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(voice-over): At the dawn of commercial television in 1950 and '51, Senator Estes Kefauver led a probe into organized crime that made him a national figure and helped sell the new gadget.

In 1954, the Army-McCarthy hearings into alleged communist influence in the military gave a national audience the chance to see Boston lawyer Joseph Welch effectively end McCarthy's career with a single line: "Senator, have you no sense of decency?"

In 1957, a Senate hearing into labor racketeering put Senator John Kennedy and his younger brother Robert into the spotlight; 1966 brought us a probing Senate hearing into how the U.S. got involved in Vietnam. The Senate looked into Watergate in 1973...

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... had several other tapes.

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GREENFIELD: ... and learned of a White House taping system. A year later, the House Judiciary Committee's investigation ended with a vote to impeach President Nixon.

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OLIVER NORTH: This is a dangerous world.

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GREENFIELD: In 1987 came the Iran-Contra hearings that made a conservative hero out of Colonel Ollie North.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The president is not above the law.

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GREENFIELD: And, in 1998, another House Judiciary Committee hearing led to the impeachment of President Clinton.

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GREENFIELD: So, let others deal with the substance of Enron. Here's what I want to know. Will some obscure senator or congressman seize the spotlight with a probing question? Will there be a thunderbolt, a revelation that changes the entire political dynamic? And I also want to know: Will there be some colorful, outrageous, hilarious witness to show up?

Superficial? Hey, after 20 years in this business, superficial is my middle name.

WOODRUFF: Jeff Greenfield, that's hardly the case. But we'll let you get away with it for this story, for the purposes of what you're trying to tell us.

Joe -- Jeff, tell us what's on "GREENFIELD AT LARGE" tonight.

GREENFIELD: Among other things, we're going to look back at the Super Bowl and ahead to the Winter Olympics and ask the question that is on a lot of people's minds: The relationship between patriotism and commercialism, when does it cross the line? We'll also talk to Billy Tauzin, who is chairing one of the many committees investigating Enron.

WOODRUFF: All right, Jeff Greenfield, we'll be watching. Thanks.

GREENFIELD: Thank you.

WOODRUFF: Political analysis from the Carlsons coming up on INSIDE POLITICS. Up next: a check of the INSIDE POLITICS "Newscycle," including an update on the case of Taliban-American John Walker Lindh.

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WOODRUFF: Checking the INSIDE POLITICS "Newscycle" this hour: a U.S. magistrate today denied a request by attorneys for John Walker Lindh to release him on bond pending his trial. The magistrate said Walker Lindh represents a flight risk and a danger to the community.

President Bush traveled to New York City today to promote his homeland security plan. Mr. Bush again paid tribute to the city's police, fire and rescue workers. And he promised to make good on his pledge to provide $20 billion in aid to New York.

More Afghan war detainees are headed to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. A U.S. C-17 left Kandahar, Afghanistan several hours ago with an unknown number of detainees on board. Detainee flights were suspended about two weeks ago while more cells were built at Guantanamo Bay.

Well, joining us now, two of our regulars: Margaret Carlson of "TIME" magazine, Tucker Carlson of CNN's "CROSSFIRE."

Great to see you both.

Let's talk about economic stimulus: Tom Daschle yesterday announcing that it is not going to make it and, in essence, pulling the plug, although saying it is going to die a natural death.

Tucker, what's the fallout, or if there is any?

TUCKER CARLSON, CO-HOST, "CROSSFIRE": I think there's some. It is not clear exactly what it is.

First of all, it freezes up $77 billion of money from the budget for Congress to play around with. But I think -- I mean, Bush can benefit in two ways. One, if the economy is in fact getting better -- and there are indications that it is -- I'm not sure how upset the public is going to be that this didn't pass.

But Bush can still say: Look, I'm on the side of the dispossessed, the people who are hurting. The Democratic-controlled Congress -- Senate -- didn't allow this through. They're bad. I'm good. I'm on your side. They're not.

I don't know. I think it could work for Bush.

WOODRUFF: Fallout which way, Margaret?

MARGARET CARLSON, "TIME": Well, it cut the baby in half. It was going to do as much harm as good. And may it rest in peace.

I think it's just better for it to be done with, because there just was just no way to compromise out of that. And now it gives them $77 billion to fight over for other things.

T. CARLSON: Which is bad.

(LAUGHTER)

M. CARLSON: Where would you like that $77 billion to go?

(CROSSTALK) M. CARLSON: Your tax cut.

WOODRUFF: I want to skip out to the Olympics in this little mini dispute over whether the U.S. team could carry the flag, the American flag that flew over ground zero in New York City. The Olympic Committee at first said no and then they said: Well, OK, you can do this as long it's just the U.S. team. It's not a part of the main procession.

Tucker, was this the right call? Did they go overboard?

T. CARLSON: Of course it was right. I'm just not at all sympathetic to the internationalist idea, the premise that all countries are fundamentally the same or equal on some level. They are not. This is our country. It's taking place in America. We're Americans. I think it's important to fly the flag. And it's obnoxious that people tried to stop it. And it was also a stupid P.R. move. And they lost.

WOODRUFF: OK. Margaret?

M. CARLSON: Well, the United States doesn't always play well with others.

T. CARLSON: Good.

M. CARLSON: Even at the Games. And the Olympics Games, the whole purpose is an international equality. It's not to have one country lord it over another, even if it is in our country. So I think, fine. I think it should be the ground zero flag. But let's not over wave it at the cost of...

T. CARLSON: I think we should over wave it. Despite the protest of Suriname and Somali and Sri Lanka, we should stand tall and wave the flag because it's in our country.

WOODRUFF: Very quickly, I want to squeeze in a question about John Walker Lindh, his attorney today criticizing the attorney general, John Ashcroft, saying he is already pronouncing judgment here.

Should John Ashcroft be saying less than he has been, Tucker?

T. CARLSON: No. He is the chief law enforcement officer. He gets to say whatever he wants on a pending criminal case. And the complaints themselves are ludicrous -- what, that he was held in a shipping container? Half of Afghanistan lives in shipping containers. This is hardly cruel and unusual. What does one expect when one is captured in the middle of a war? I think it's fair.

WOODRUFF: Margaret.

M. CARLSON: Well, as it goes to trial, it might help if Ashcroft said less so that the justice works its magic. And I'm sure he'll be convicted. It does sound as if the conditions under which he were kept were quite hideous: naked on a cot, strapped down, given a blanket after three days, no medical care. Now, this could be the lawyer just spinning the treatment. We don't know. And the e-mails -- after his parents had said he loves his country, the e-mails certainly makes it sound as if he does not love his country.

T. CARLSON: And there was evidence of that when he was caught with a gun in his hand fighting for the Taliban. That was a sign, too, you know?

WOODRUFF: We're going to leave it there. Tucker Carlson, Margaret Carlson, thank you both.

M. CARLSON: Thanks, Judy.

WOODRUFF: See you next week, if not sooner.

The president and New York City -- coming up next, Garrett Utley reflects on the way commanders in chief can make an impression in the Big Apple.

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WOODRUFF: There was a time when George W. Bush tried to steer clear of New York City. Or it seemed that way. Then came September 11.

As Mr. Bush visits the city again today, CNN's Garrett Utley reflects on presidents pan and the Big Apple.

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GARRICK UTLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It was moving.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I can hear you!

UTLEY: It was memorable.

BUSH: Thank you, brother.

UTLEY: In the intimacy of tragedy, a president and a city bonded...

(on camera): ... which doesn't happen very often. New Yorkers don't see a presidential visit as some welcome, special event, but rather as a big pain and traffic jam. For their part, presidents have long felt that one way to play to the American Heartland is by not getting too close to the Sodom and Gomorrah of Manhattan. But just think what might have been.

(voice-over): After all, New York City, population 30,000, was the nation's first capital with the nation's first president. But New York D.C. didn't sound quite right to the founding fathers. When the capital headed south, New Yorkers didn't mind. The old Federal Hall was on Wall Street, where the locals believed that real power was in making money, not governing.

Who needed a president? Well, New Yorkers would. As the World Trade Center was going up, a symbol of New York's financial power, the city was heading for bankruptcy. In 1975, it turned to Washington to President Gerald Ford for help. The president was not in the giving mood.

(on camera): All right, New Yorkers said, "We may not be the most lovable citizens in the Republic, or the most deserving." They certainly are not the most Republican. The last Republican presidential candidate to win the New York City vote was Richard Nixon in his 1972 landslide. And before that, it was Calvin Coolidge.

(voice-over): In fact, in the 2000 race, Al Gore had New York City so deep in his pocket that George W. Bush ignored it. Democrats feel comfortable here, as a base for a former president, and a launching pad, perhaps, for a future one? But then came that day in September and politicians and partisans called time out.

BUSH: This morning, I am sending to Congress a request for emergency funding authority.

UTLEY: The president promised $20 billion in aid to rebuild New York City. But the city's leaders worry that the promise will be ground down by the pressures of budget deficits. Still, today, this president and this city are getting along just fine; 15 months ago, Bush won only 17 percent of the presidential vote in the city. His approval rating among registered voters here now stands at 68 percent.

New York City is no longer a place to run against or run away from.

Garrick Utley, CNN, New York.

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WOODRUFF: And, in New York, meantime, there may be some damage to Rudy Giuliani's image. "The New York Post" is reporting that leaders of the city's police and firefighters' unions are accusing the former mayor of exploiting the September 11 tragedy. That's because he's using his Twin Towers charity fund to help promote tonight's opening of the new Arnold Schwarzenegger movie, called "Collateral Damage."

Giuliani's spokeswoman says the former mayor's appearance with Schwarzenegger is appropriate because he plans to publicly thank the movie star for his $1 million donation to the Twin Towers Fund.

INSIDE POLITICS will be right back.

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WOODRUFF: CNN's coverage continues now with "WOLF BLITZER REPORTS."

Thanks for joining us. I'm Judy Woodruff. TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com


 
 
 
 


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