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State of the Union

Interview With Former President George W. Bush; Interview With Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro and Congressman Joaquin Castro; Interview With Michigan Congressman Mike Rogers

Aired December 07, 2014 - 09:00   ET


CANDY CROWLEY, CNN ANCHOR: A courageous rescue mission with a tragic outcome. An American and a South African hostage are killed in Yemen amidst the clash between U.S. special forces and al Qaeda operatives.

Also today: all in the family, politics-style.


GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And it's a love story. I'm not the least bit ashamed to say it's not very objective.


CROWLEY: Our conversation with George W. Bush, with a portrait of his father, 43 on 41, and could there be a 45?


G. BUSH: If I need to reiterate it, I will. Run, Jeb.



CROWLEY: Then: A new Texas dynasty rises. He's the secretary of Housing and Urban Development and he's the newly elected congressman from San Antonio. We talk to the twin Castro brothers Julian and Joaquin.


Good morning from Washington. I'm Candy Crowley.

My interview with President George W. Bush in a moment, but, first, a couple of stories breaking in the last 24 hours.

Protests turned violent in Berkeley overnight, when some demonstrators smashed windows and threw rocks at police. About 200 people turned up to a protest -- to protest a New York grand jury decision not to indict a white police officer for the chokehold killing of a black citizen. And now there are still questions about the president's

unscheduled visit to Walter Reed Hospital to get a C.T. scan for a sore throat.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins me now to try to get some answers to those questions.

Thanks, Sanjay.


CROWLEY: I want to read our audience part of the doctor's statement following this exam -- quote -- "The examine revealed soft tissue swelling in the posterior throat. The C.T. scan was normal. The president's symptoms are consistent with soft issue inflammation related to acid reflux and will be treated accordingly."

So the president apparently for a couple weeks maybe or several days has been suffering from a sore throat. If I was suffering from a sore throat for a couple of days, would I be getting a C.T. scan?


GUPTA: No, unlikely.

And, you know, obviously this is the president of the United States. And we think of you almost in the same regard, Candy, but this is...


CROWLEY: Of course.

GUPTA: But there's an abundance of caution, no question here.

What sounds like happened, he's had these -- these symptoms for a couple of weeks. Had a scope, had a little camera, fiberoptic camera placed down the back of the throat to see what was going on. And they noticed that inflammation, as you mentioned just now in that report.

And I think out of an abundance of caution, they got the CAT scan. Look, what happens is, take a look at this animation. You get a lot of acid in your stomach, there are sphincters a that bottom part of your esophagus -- that's your food pipe. And there's another sphincter at the top of your esophagus. That's supposed to prevent acid from sort of re-gurgling up into your chest and then eventually into your throat.

But if you have acid reflux, that's exactly what can happen. And that acid can cause some irritation to the back of the throat. It's especially worse usually in the morning for people, just because they're lying flat on their back. This may sound familiar. And that's -- that's what they are saying has been going on with the president. CROWLEY: And how -- how much of a factor is the president's

previous smoking? He was a longtime smoker. He took up Nicorette six years ago. That much, we know, and may have had a couple cigarettes in between.

But the question is, the decision to get a C.T. scan, could that have been driven by the fact that he has been a smoker?

GUPTA: It's a really fair point, I think, Candy.

So, a couple things. If he's still smoking -- and we don't know, obviously -- if he is, though, then that certainly could be contributing to his current symptoms of acid reflux. Smoking definitely makes acid reflux more likely and worse.

But based on his past history -- and, again, this is an abundance of caution. We hear the C.T. scan was normal. But you have got this sort of history of symptoms, you have got these symptoms of acid reflux, a CAT could be being performed to make sure there's no other mass or something that may represent cancer or swelling of the lymph nodes.

And, again, nobody is saying that that has occurred here. The C.T. scan was read as being normal.


GUPTA: But that's the sort of abundance of caution. You want to look at that area very thoroughly.

What would typically happen, all kidding aside, Candy, is, if you have acid reflux, typically, you would get placed on some medications for a while, medications that would to reduce the amount of acid in the stomach, reduce the likelihood that acid would gurgle up into the esophagus, and make -- and then your symptoms would likely go away.

If they didn't go away after a few weeks, then maybe would get a CAT scan.


And -- and knowing what we do know now about everything looked clear on the C.T. and they think it's acid reflux, do you have any sort of outstanding questions? The suddenness with which this appears always gets people curious and thinking, what is really going on here?

Do you have any outstanding medical questions that you don't think are answered?

GUPTA: Well, there's a couple things.

You know, the first thing, they call this inflammation in the back of the throat. Then they said there was some -- there was a little bit of swelling back there. It was characterized a few different ways. I was -- I would be curious, and I have been asking the White House, if they did a biopsy of any sort? Was there anything in the back of the throat that required a biopsy?

I would also like to know how much this has been affecting the president. How bad are his symptoms? With acid reflux, you can start to develop difficulty swallowing, difficulty with speech. It can be pretty significant.

So, I would be curious just how bad this -- how much this has been affecting the president. And then, also, what treatments is he going to get for this? We're just told that he's going to be treated. If he was smoking, how -- how much has that played a role?

I think these are questions that still need to be answered a bit here. And, you know, this is obviously -- given that it's the president, if there was a mass and there was a biopsy, I would like to see what the results of that are for the next few days.

CROWLEY: Dr. Sanjay Gupta, thank you so much.

GUPTA: You got it. Thank you.

CROWLEY: Now we to want go to the tragic outcome of a rescue attempt of two hostages in Yemen.

U.S. Navy SEALs trekked six miles inland toward an al Qaeda compound, but were discovered within 100 yards of that compound. In the firefight that ensued, officials say the hostages, American journalist Luke Somers and South African teacher Pierre Korkie, were shot by a militant. They both died.

I'm joined by the outgoing chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Congressman Mike Rogers.

Congressman, thanks for being here.


CROWLEY: Tell us what you know about this mission.

ROGERS: Well, obviously, these are very, very difficult undertakings.

Sometimes, we get numb to the fact that they're successful that they must be easier or we must be so good that no mistake can happen. This was a part of a series of events. This was the second. Information was obviously good. The intelligence was good.

Unfortunately, in something like this, they do try to prevent that, that -- they being the terrorists that are holding these hostages are trying to set up a perimeter to stop it. And, unfortunately, that's what they ran into on the way in.

CROWLEY: So, in the first attempt, we know they went and did not find Luke Somers. That's who they were looking for. But they used information from that first attempt to find him a second time.

ROGERS: That's right.

CROWLEY: What does this tell you about al Qaeda and whether there's been any kind of transformation in their thinking?

They have not been, as ISIS has been, beheading U.S. citizens or otherwise murdering, not just U.S., but British citizens as well. What does it -- does this tell you that they're moving more toward what ISIS is doing?

ROGERS: No, not necessarily.

If you remember, AQIM, the al Qaeda in the Maghreb, Northern Africa, has been taking hostages, ransoming hostages and has been the single largest -- up to about 2012 -- contributor to al Qaeda in cash payments, meaning people were cooperating, paying the ransom.

When it didn't happen, they do execute their hostages. And so, we need to understand that this isn't something new. I think the sheer terror of the way that ISIS does it, by beheading, certainly has gotten into the conscience of America.

But they have been engaged in this practice for a very long time, al Qaeda, as well as ISIS tactics.


ROGERS: So, what we know is, they're still trying to ransom, and I think this should reengage the debate about paying ransoms. When you pay ransom, you get more kidnappings.

That's certainly what we saw across Africa. We're certainly seeing it in Yemen as well.

CROWLEY: Sure. But we also see that when ransom is paid by other countries, they get their citizens back. Is it something that -- I know the argument is always, oh, they will just take more hostages. But the truth is, they get the hostages back.

ROGERS: Well, I mean, if we're going to be extorted into paying ransom to al Qaeda so that they can blow -- you know, rape women and imprison women and blow up buildings and kill civilians, men, women and children, that's a pretty bad plan to start with.

And so I agreed with the president's decision. I don't think this was an easy decision. I do think it was the right decision to actually engage and try to go in for the rescue attempt. Nobody can do it better than our special forces community.

It doesn't always go perfectly. That's always the risk. And in this particular case, unfortunately -- and it was a tragic loss of the two hostages -- you know, it was an unfortunate outcome. But I do believe you have to take these kinds of decisions.

And I'm going to -- I commend the president for -- for acting, because the intelligence showed an urgency to get in, or they were going to kill this American hostage anyway. CROWLEY: Right.

I want to ask you about a couple other things that are coming up, some that have happened.


CROWLEY: The Obama administration has decided to send six Guantanamo Bay prisoners to Uruguay. It seems to me that while they have -- the administration has said, no, we're not really closing Guantanamo, they're certainly moving much more quickly in getting these prisoners to other countries.

What do you think of this particular deal? I'm assuming Congress was informed of it. I mean, it's not a deal. They just sent them to Uruguay. And what do you think about putting them in Uruguay?

ROGERS: I have been opposed to this notion that we're going to farm out Gitmo to places. By the way, a lot them aren't from Uruguay. They're from all over the rest of the world.

And some of these intelligence services who do these agreements about agreeing to watch them or monitor them can't do it. So, we pay money. Remember this now. We're going to pay a lot of money to these countries who take these particular prisoners. That's not their culture. That's not where they're from.

And these services or law enforcement or intelligence services are supposed to monitor these people. What we have found in the past is, it doesn't work very well, not -- I don't think that surprises anybody. So, I argue that maybe we ought to rethink what we're doing here.

And we do know, by the way, that some past released prisoners are now reengaged in the terrorist fight. We knew that was going to happen. That's why those of us who tried to do the review of this were so concerned. Because they were so interested in getting them out, they forgot to do the due diligence, I think, that would allow them to at least protect the folks who are going to go back into the fight from getting back into the fight.

CROWLEY: Let me move you on to a couple of other things.

The Senate Intelligence Committee, we expect, will be releasing this report on the CIA activities vis-a-vis interrogation of terrorists during the Bush administration. It may come this week. Do you know what's in the report? And what's your basic fear? Or do you applaud the idea of saying, let's get some of this out there?

ROGERS: No, I think this is a terrible idea.

So, our foreign partners are telling us this will cause violence and deaths. Our -- foreign leaders have approached the government and said, you do this, this will cause violence and deaths. Our own intelligence community has assessed that this will cause violence and deaths. CROWLEY: Because why?

ROGERS: I don't see what...

CROWLEY: Because -- because other countries. And they're not going to name other countries that helped the U.S. in interrogating and holding suspected terrorists.

So, if they don't name it and they don't have things that otherwise identify a country, why would it cause...

ROGERS: Well, certainly, again, these foreign leaders believe it will. Our intelligence community believes it will. And our foreign liaison partners believe it will, because we have seen what happens when other incidents are used in the propaganda terrorist machine to incite violence.

Think of the cartoons in Denmark and how many people died as a result. Think of the burning of the Korans and how many people died as a result. They will use this to incite violence. And here's the scary part about this. Well, again, and Senator Kerry -- excuse me -- Secretary Kerry has engaged in this because he believes this is dangerous to what they're trying to accomplish overseas.

That tells you something there. This is more than just differences on what happened. This is -- and then you have to ask this, Candy. What good will come of this report? There's been a Department of Justice investigation. It was stopped under the Bush administration. There has been congressional action to stop this activity. President Obama put an executive order saying he wouldn't continue any of that activity, not that it was going on. It had since been stopped.

So, you have to ask yourself, if you know that all of those learned people believe that people will die because of this report, what good can come of it, knowing all of that other -- all those other things have actually happened?

CROWLEY: I can't let you go, even though I'm out of time, because I need to ask you about the Benghazi report that your committee put out.

It's been criticized by a lot of Republicans. Some have said it was a bunch of an expletive that I can't use on TV, saying, you know, you slow-walked this. It was a sloppy report. You never wanted to find the Obama administration, you kept saying this is in the past, let's move on, and that it will not be the definitive report.

Your reaction?

ROGERS: Oh, it's not meant to be the most definitive report. I wish -- people who were some of the most vocal critics never read the report.

Actually, some of the most vocal critics never accessed the classified evidence or the classified annex to the report. I find that a little bit troubling that they would spend so much time looking for a partisan angle on this.

Here's the problem when I -- that I learned as a young FBI agent in Chicago. If somebody loves your investigation, best to start over. And what happened is, we decided that we were only going to use facts and then corroborate those facts to come to a finding and a conclusion.

If people read the conclusions, which, by the way, is very narrowly tailored to the intelligence community, the State Department was not part of our investigation. The White House was not part of our investigation. This was only isolated to the intelligence community.

The odd thing is, it mirrors -- mirrors the Senate Intelligence report. It also mirrors the House Armed Services report, which was also a Republican report. None of those reports differ at all, because they were all fact-based.

My argument is, if you -- some people on the left are condemning it. They wanted exoneration. Some on the right are saying they wanted damnation. What we did is laid the facts on the table. And I believe the facts speak for themselves.

There are a lot of unanswered questions in the State Department and the White House. That's where the select committee, I think, can get answers.

CROWLEY: Understand.

Mr. Chairman, thank you for joining us. This may be the last time you join us as chairman. You are moving into not retirement, but a different line of work, our line of work.

ROGERS: We are going to miss you and your voice on Sunday mornings, for sure.

And thanks for all your good service and all of the communication you have been able to do in getting all that information. And, by the way, you are a tough interview, so don't let anyone tell you different.


CROWLEY: All right.

Thank you so much for coming and submitting to them. We appreciate it.

ROGERS: Thank you.

CROWLEY: Now: a salute to his dad, advice for his brother, and thoughts on the New York chokehold death. My exclusive interview with President George W. Bush is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) CROWLEY: President George W. Bush seems to be loving retirement.

His latest venture, a book about his dad called "41: A Portrait of My Father."

It combines his two favorite post-presidential hobbies, writing and painting. Here's a W. original included on page two of his book, a portrait of his father.

I caught up with 43 at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia, where the former president completed his National Guard flight training in 1969. This time around, he came to sell and sign a new book. And that's where our conversation began.


CROWLEY: First of all, congratulations. It debuted number one on "The New York Times" list.

G. BUSH: Thank you.

CROWLEY: Did you ever think you would be number one in anything "The New York Times" had?

G. BUSH: No, and neither did "The New York Times."


CROWLEY: So, why did you feel the need -- I mean, your dad is an accomplished guy.

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: I mean, you just look at his resume.

I remember writing stories about him, saying, he has one of the best resumes in politics, and this, and that and the other thing. Why did you think, I have got to -- I have got to reexplain this guy?

G. BUSH: Well, I think I'm introducing him to our country in a way no one's ever known him.

In other words, he's an extraordinary person, not only because of his accomplishments, but because of his character. And, secondly, I understand how history works. It takes a long time for -- for people to get to know him, get to know somebody, and to analyze their decisions.

But I wanted -- I wanted to be one of the first people out in the evaluation of George H.W. Bush. And it's a love story. I mean, look, I'm...


G. BUSH: I'm not the least bit ashamed to say it's not very objective. I think people -- I also happen to think it's a handbook on

fatherhood. It will -- if somebody is interested in how a person was a great father, even though he was very busy, this book is such an example.

CROWLEY: There's a handbook for that.

I want to read you the "New York Times" review part of -- part of the "New York Times" review about your book, which was favorable and said it's readable and that it was a love story to your dad, et cetera.

And then "He" -- meaning you, "He does not reflect on his lifetime of efforts to prove himself by following in his father's footsteps, nor does he dwell on any frustrations in trying to measure up. With the former president fading into winter, the younger Bush's book feels like a release of sorts, finally getting rid of whatever baggage has been there for so long. A son sits at the hospital bed, at last coming to terms."

It went on to say that this was -- now your argument is not with your dad, but with history.

What do you think about that?

G. BUSH: Yes, I think it's typical psychobabble of somebody who has no clue what he's talking about.

And one reason I wrote the book is that, you know, as I understand it, a lot of people are saying, well, you know, he's in stiff competition with his father.


CROWLEY: But aren't all sons in stiff competition with their father or with each other or...

G. BUSH: Not really.

I mean, yes, stiff competition is overstated. In other words, if you love somebody as much as I love my dad, and my brothers love my dad, and my sister loves him, there's no need to compete.

And so, I mean, people are going to write what they want to write. I, on the other hand, I'm happy to get it out, because, first, I'm glad dad's alive when it comes out. And, secondly, I'm glad a lot of his friends are alive and can take it in and say, wow, this is a guy I know.

CROWLEY: You are a close family. That comes through in the book, how close you are to your dad, how close you are to your brothers, particularly Jeb, who you mentioned.

But it strikes me that you are a close family that does not talk about the family business when you get together, which I think is weird. G. BUSH: True. It is weird, yes.

Yes, we do a little, but not much. I mean, here's the thing. Jeb knows what he's doing.

I presume you're leading me to talk about Jeb, I mean, not the book.


CROWLEY: Well, eventually, but I just meant the thought that you would -- I was actually thinking of you and your dad...

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ... who have -- have, you know, regardless of how people interpret it, followed similar paths.

G. BUSH: Correct, no question.

CROWLEY: And you never really talked about it.

G. BUSH: Well, we talk -- we talk about circumstances, or we talk about incidents.

But I don't -- I don't remember ever sitting down kind of hashing through an analysis of why we developed our philosophies the way that we did or comparing our philosophy that...

CROWLEY: I don't mean that, so much as, don't do this because that will get you in trouble, and I think that's a bad policy, or that kind of thing.

G. BUSH: Yes. No, we really didn't.

And I think part of it has to do with how he raised us. And that is, I love you, you know, no matter what you do. Go get it.

And he didn't want to steer us, not only in our career choices, but once we had made choices, on how to -- on how to make decisions in my case. Now, if I ever wanted advice, of course he was always there.

And I try to -- it's hard for people to understand. I fully understand that. But -- and I hope, when people read this -- and I hope they do -- is that they understand that when he reached across and grabbed my arm after the speech on September the 14th in the National Cathedral, I mean, an incredibly emotional moment for me, it was in many ways symbolic of what he meant for me as president.

In other words, he was a comforter a lot, because he had been through what I was going through. And he knew that he -- each president has to make up their own mind. They have to develop a team of people they trust. He knew that you get a lot of advice as president. A lot of it is not grounded in knowledge, and that -- and so he was confident I had a good team and that I would make decisions based upon good judgments of a lot of good advisers. CROWLEY: I want to ask you about a couple things you wrote about

in the book that were really interesting to me.

Well, the one was about your grandfather, I think on your dad's side, who dressed down Nelson Rockefeller in public for getting a divorce, marrying a younger woman who was also married at the time.

G. BUSH: Yes. Yes.

CROWLEY: And then you sort of wondered in the book, I wonder what he would think of today's culture.

G. BUSH: I did.

CROWLEY: And I was looking at that, thinking, I wonder what your dad thinks of today's culture, because just since you have left office...

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ... we have seen a country moving more toward gay marriage, we have seen a country moving more towards more towards the legalization of marijuana, certainly in some states.

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: What does your dad make of that?

G. BUSH: You know, it's interesting. I can't tell you. I really can't.

He's not -- he's through commenting. He's 80 -- 90. And he just -- as I think Baker said, he has said all he wants to say. And he's -- the interesting thing about watching him -- and I tried to get some insights from him about, you know, did he fear death, for example?

That's one of the opening stories about, I was wearing dirty pants, and instead of talking about whether he feared death, he said, do those pants come in clean? He just kind of brushed me off, you know?

But he doesn't comment on it, and nor does he comment about our current president, nor does he respond when somebody walks in and says something ugly about somebody in the political arena. He just kind of takes it in.

And he's joyful, however. It's interesting to watch. He's teaching us -- one of the lessons of the book is how much I learned from him. And I'm confident my brothers and sister did. And he's teaching us how to grow old gracefully. And I guess at some point, Candy, all these issues, and temporal issues and stuff matter not. When you're at the very end, you have lived a good, strong life, you jumped out of an airplane at age -- or helicopter at age 90, it just doesn't matter anymore.

You're thinking about, I would guess in his case, you know, eternity. And I have a glimpse in that -- a glimpse of that in the book when he says to his preacher, do you think I will see my mother and Robin?

And I know that was a genuine question. And, as I put in there, I think he does think he's going to see them.


That was a defining moment as a parent, when you lose a child at the age of 3.

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: But it's also a defining moment for a child.

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: Do you think it changed the family dynamic in any way when your sister died?

G. BUSH: Well, it did, yes, in a strange way, because it meant there was, for a while, two families.

I was the only child, and then Jeb, Neil, and Marvin, and Doro, because when you're 17 and your other brother is 10, you know, there's a big difference. When I'm 21 and he's 14, it's hard to go have a beer with him.

Obviously, age matters -- age difference matters little as you get older. But, for a while, it was. Secondly, the dynamic, mother smothered me, I'm told. And the story is, is that a friend came over and said, we want to play. And I said, I can't. I have got to comfort my mother.

And she realized that she needed to help me get out and I was -- I was just hanging around to entertain her because she was hurting so badly.

And I don't know what -- mother and I are very close. I guess it's because -- maybe because we're so much alike, sadly for her.


G. BUSH: Anyway, that -- maybe that's part of the reason why, is because of that moment, that period of time, when they were grieving.

The thing in the book that I find hard for me to deal with at times when I think about it is when, you know, dad wasn't very expressive about his love to us years ago. He grew more so as time went on. Occasionally, he takes -- he starts to say, "I love you more than time can tell," which, it was the last words he heard from his sweet little 3-year-old child.

And, you know, it's a -- he's a sweet man that he's -- and it's interesting to think back about how more expressive he's become with time. CROWLEY: Over time, yes.

I remember him saying on a plane, famously, the Bushes don't do grief well.

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: Because everyone said, well, how did you feel? I think it was maybe the shuttle explosion, something.

G. BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: And when he came back, he said, we just don't -- don't handle grieving all that well.

G. BUSH: Yes.


CROWLEY: Next up: George Bush on ISIS and how to put Iraq back together again.

Stay with us.


CROWLEY: Once upon a time, George W. Bush and Vladimir Putin looked like buddies. I wondered now what he thinks about the man he once referred to as Putty-put.


CROWLEY: I want to ask you about Putin because you also told a story in the book about going fishing with him...


CROWLEY: ...and taking him to Kennebunkport. You famously talked about looking into his eyes and seeing his soul and you (INAUDIBLE) explained that. But I wonder what you think of Putin now.

BUSH: I think he's become more zero sum type thinker. In other words, I don't -- haven't talked to him in years but it's almost as if he says that if the -- if the west wins, I lose and if I win the west lose. As opposed to, what can we do together to enhance our respective positions.

CROWLEY: You also talked in -- about feeling that your father's decision to drive Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait and your decision to go into Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein were both the correct decisions in their time.

BUSH: Right.

CROWLEY: One of the -- one of the paragraphs you say, "For the sake of our security and the Iraqi people, I hope we will do what it takes to defeat ISIS and allow Iraq's democratic government a chance to succeed."

What is the right thing to do?

BUSH: Well, first thing is there has to be a goal. And the president has laid out what I think is a good goal and that is to degrade and defeat ISIS.

Once you state the goal, then have you to put plans in place to achieve the goal. And it seems like to me the initial plans are being adjusted. All I hope is that we succeed because ISIS is lethal. They're lethal not only for the people in the neighborhoods in which they leave. They're lethal to our security.

CROWLEY: And you -- and you are with President Obama at this point on this goal?

BUSH: On degrading and defeating, absolutely. I think --

CROWLEY: And on the carrying out of that goal?


BUSH: Well, we'll see. Time will tell. It hadn't been all that long since he stated the goal. So, hopefully what he does works. If it doesn't work, hopefully he'll change.


CROWLEY: As we've mentioned, the Senate Intelligence Committee is set to release a report on CIA activity during the Bush era. The former president says he hasn't seen the report, but he did offer up his stiff defense of the agency.


BUSH: We're fortunate to have men and women who work hard at the CIA serving on our behalf. These are patriots. And whatever the report says, if it diminishes their contributions to our country, it is way off base. And I knew the directors, I knew the deputy directors, you know, I knew a lot of the operators. These are good people, really good people and we're lucky as a nation to have them.


CROWLEY: Next up, the former president react it is to anti- police demonstrations across the country. And tells us if we can expect a third Bush in the White House.


CROWLEY: Here now, 43 on the potential for a 45.


CROWLEY: And now to the question that you thought I was getting to. I was surprised --

BUSH: Let me guess. Jeb.

CROWLEY: There you go.

I was surprised to read that your dad actually thought about not running for re-election...

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: '92...

BUSH: Ninety-two, yes.

CROWLEY: ...because it -- the spotlight on Neil had been so harsh...

BUSH: It was harsh.

CROWLEY: ...and he worried about it.

And he ultimately decided my family can stand up to this and (INAUDIBLE) another term. You say you took it into consideration when you were pondering whether to run for president.

BUSH: Right.

CROWLEY: And you decided your family was up to this. Is Jeb Bush's family up to the kind of scrutiny that you know happens and is now by the way even more (ph) because --

BUSH: Blogs and all that?


BUSH: I think that's what he's trying to figure out.

So, when you're weighing the presidency, you think, do I fear success? In other words, can I handle it if I win? You know, on paper it seems like, you know, maybe an easy task. On the other hand you really start thinking about the implications of being president, some people will go, I'm not sure I can handle that and, therefore, back off.

The other thing is do you fear failure? And Jeb doesn't. Nor does he fear success by the way. One reason is because he was governor of Florida. The final consideration of course is what you just brought up, the family. He has -- he had seen what it's like to be the son of a president, he had seen what it is like to be a brother of a president, and he -- and, therefore, he's being very -- he is not -- he is not rushing into running for the presidency. I have no clue where his head is now. I do know that he's trying to answer that very question you just asked. You know, do I want to put my family through the scrutiny? And he'll decide.

CROWLEY: Has he called you at all about it?

BUSH: No, no.

CROWLEY: So again, the kind of zone of silence...

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ...around the family business.

BUSH: He knows I want him to run. If I need to reiterate it, I will. Run, Jeb. I think he'd be a great president.

CROWLEY: I want you to translate something he said recently, since you're his brother and everybody's translating it. His latest comment said, to be a candidate you to be willing to lose the primaries to win the general.

BUSH: Yes.


CROWLEY: Do you think he's referring to the fact you cannot kowtow to conservatives and the party who push you to the right in the primaries...

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ...only to make you run back to the middle in the generals?

BUSH: It could be but it's just -- it's a problem everybody -- I don't remember me having that big of a problem doing that.

CROWLEY: Well, but you -- you are seen rightly or wrongly at the time as a compassionate conservative but nonetheless a conservative.

BUSH: Well so is Jeb. And I think his positions on education because of his record --

CROWLEY: Immigration?

BUSH: Yes. I think it's a conservative position.

CROWLEY: You should ask some conservatives about that.

BUSH: Well I mean, I do.

CROWLEY: A lot of them think he is a, you know, as you were, a little -- a little less conservative than they would rather. But I want --

BUSH: Look, I fully understand it's an emotional issue. And -- but I think Jeb's position is very reasonable and important.

CROWLEY: You used to say family values don't stop at the Rio Grande - BUSH: Don't stop at the Rio Grande River. Thank you.

CROWLEY: He talks about folks coming here undocumented often as an act of love.

BUSH: Correct.

CROWLEY: That's the sort of language that worries conservatives and so people took this as, hey, I am what I am and you can't -

BUSH: Right.

CROWLEY: You know, you have to be willing to lose the primaries but you can't because there's a -


BUSH: I guess. I don't know. I have not -- (INAUDIBLE) making more sense that I should explain it but I didn't call him and say, what do you mean?

CROWLEY: Could you call in the middle of (INAUDIBLE)?

BUSH: Yes. Well, I hope it didn't mean that he's not going to run. That was my first reaction...


BUSH: ...that maybe this is a signal but he's not a guy you sends signals. He'll say, yes or no when he feels like it.

CROWLEY: You've often referred to Bill Clinton. You talked about his relationship with your father and how it developed and your mother as well. And he's your brother from another mother. What does that make Hillary Clinton to the Bush family?

BUSH: My sister-in-law.

CROWLEY: Interesting. Do you think that your brother could run against your sister-in-law?

BUSH: Yes, and I think he'd beat her.

CROWLEY: Do you?

BUSH: I do. I do.

CROWLEY: She's formidable.

BUSH: Very much so. No question. So is he, though.

CROWLEY: So you'll take that bet?

BUSH: Absolutely.

CROWLEY: Do you think she'll run? BUSH: Of course you're not going to make it because you're an

objective newscaster.

CROWLEY: That's why I'm asking you.

BUSH: Do I think she'll run? I have no clue. I have no clue.

But I know this but like Jeb, she knows what it's like. And she's -- she's taking her time. She's got a new complicating factor in that she's a grandmother, like you and like me from the grandfather side, she's going to understand the joys of what it's like and --

CROWLEY: Just being available.

BUSH: Absolutely.


BUSH: And it will enrich their lives like no other event has. But both folks will make -- yes, she'll be a formidable candidate. No question. And both folks, Jeb and Hillary, are going to make very considered (ph) judgments.

CROWLEY: I'm going to ask a couple things in the news. One thing is we've seen the Ferguson...

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ...grand jury decision and some of the riots that followed and also peaceful protests there. We've now seen a New York decision that has, again, brought race to the forefront. There are those who say, race seems to be more of a problem with what a lot of people termed a post-racial presidency.

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: When you view Republicans and race and when you saw what happened in the streets of New York and the video, what did you think?

BUSH: I thought, how sad. You know, the verdict was hard to understand but, you know, I haven't seen all the details. But it's sad that race continues to play such, you know, kind of an emotional divisive part of life.

I remember back when I was a kid in the '70s and there was race riots with cities being burned. And I do think we have improved. I had dinner with Condi (ph) the other night and we talked about this subject. And yes, she just said, you just got to understand that there are a lot of, you know, black folks around that are just incredibly more and more distrusting of law enforcement, which is -- which is a shame because law enforcement's job is to protect everybody. And --

CROWLEY: And a video like that is disturbing...

BUSH: Absolutely.

CROWLEY: ...even to you --


BUSH: Very disturbing to me. Yes, I mean it just -- it calls into question what needs to be done to heal -- to get the country united again. But not question (ph) -- and as Condi mentioned, and I agree, there has been tremendous progress based on race but I think these incidents show there needs to be more.

CROWLEY: And do you know where to start with that?

BUSH: Well, you know, the president has got an opportunity to start.

CROWLEY: Do you think he's in a tough position as the first sort of African-American president, but you're president of everyone as you know Democrats...

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ...Republicans, whites, blacks, Hispanics.

BUSH: Yes, it would be tough. It would be tougher, you know, Anglo (ph) president, white president, Latino president or black president, when this kind of thing goes on in our country. Yes, it's a hard -- it's hard to get the emotions settled down to the point where people say, let's be -- let's solve problems such as these.

CROWLEY: I want to wrap up this part of it with a question about one of -- one or the other of your daughters. And that is, if they were to write a book about you...

BUSH: Yes.

CROWLEY: ...what would you want it to say?

BUSH: I hope it would be -- the tone would be just like that, that's what I'd hope.

I'd hope -- in the book I put in there that -- which I used when it comes to people who say, what do I do, I have a teenage daughter? I say, I love you. There's nothing you can do to make me not love you so stop trying. Did I lose my patience with them? Absolutely, because they kept trying to make me not love them at times. Am I proud of them? Unbelievably proud of them.

You know, it'd be an interesting question. I don't know. Maybe they'll paint an introduction to a table top of George W. Bush's paintings. So, who knows.

CROWLEY: Thank you so much for the insight. Appreciate it.

BUSH: Great to be with you.

CROWLEY: Very nice to be with you.

BUSH: Yes.


CROWLEY: We'll have more of my interview with George W. Bush next week and more stories from his book "41: A Portrait of My Father."

But when we return, Texas twins and rising Democratic stars, Julian and Joaquin Castro.


CROWLEY: In 2012 Julian Castro became the first Hispanic- American to deliver the keynote address for the Democratic National Convention. And that same year his brother Joaquin was elected to congress.

With me now Julian Castro, who is secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and the recently re-elected congressman, Joaquin Castro and just to state the obvious, you two are twins.

JULIAN CASTRO, HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT SECRETARY: That is true. We are. Although we used to look more alike than we do now.

CROWLEY: Than you do now. Yes. That's what personality will do for you as you grow older, right.

So, you're both Democrats. You're twins. Do you have identical political views?

JULIAN CASTRO: I wouldn't say they're identical. Obviously like any two people there are hardly any people that agree 100 percent of the time. So --

REP. JOAQUIN CASTRO, D-TEXAS: We're very similar. Yes. You know, once in a while we will find ourselves debating an issue and --

JULIAN CASTRO: I always let him win so that's --

CROWLEY: So your biggest disagreement politically?

JOAQUIN CASTRO: What do you think the biggest one has been?

JULIAN CASTRO: I don't know if I would describe it as a big disagreement. I think just as issues as they come up when we're talking about them, we see them a little bit differently.

JOAQUIN CASTRO: About strategy, about tactics, things like that. Usually in terms of where we want to go on an issue is pretty similar.

CROWLEY: I wanted to ask you because you're both Hispanic- Americans. We have seen these protests over minority treatment and this is in this case meant Black-American, African-Americans by police. I want to play you just -- play you just a portion of an interview the president gave on this that -- the whole interview is airing tomorrow. Here is a little of what he said.


OBAMA: When you're dealing with something as deeply rooted as racism or bias in any society, vigilance but you have to recognize that it's going to take some time and you just have to be steady so that don't give up when we don't get all the way there.


CROWLEY: So the president saying, look, you have to have some patience and saying we also have to note the progress. I wanted to ask you as Hispanic Americans, do you think that community has similar problems? Is there a brown on blue problem, as well?

JULIAN CASTRO: I believe communities of color, particularly in our urban centers, do have trust issues with the police oftentimes. However, I wouldn't say that -- I think that there's clearly been a stronger issue, a more acute issue in the African-American community when you look at the statistics of how many unarmed African-American men and boys are getting killed or getting injured or shot by police officers, and that doesn't speak to any one particular case, but I wouldn't say those are identical. However, they do have similar trust issues, and the statistics and the anecdotes you hear in our cities bear that out.

CROWLEY: You obviously spent a lot of time in San Antonio, both of you. Do you feel a sense of tension between Hispanic communities and police?

JOAQUIN CASTRO: There are a lot of the same concerns that you see in African-American communities, but I think it's also evident over the years that nobody -- no community is immune from troubles with the police. In San Antonio right now, for example, there's a case going on where a white student was shot and killed by a campus police officer. And yesterday marked the year anniversary, and that case still has not been presented to a grand jury. So it's mostly communities of color, especially African Americans, but I think nobody is immune, and particularly younger folks tend to have run-ins with police.

CROWLEY: Is there a federal solution?


CROWLEY: Or part of a solution?

JOAQUIN CASTRO: I think what we've seen come out of this really is three things. A retraining of police so that they are better able to handle these situations. Body cameras, which are not a panacea, but are a positive and a strong step. And 84 percent of Americans support making sure that we have body cameras there, and then also changing the grand jury system.

JULIAN CASTRO: The president took a strong step, I believe, and Attorney General Holder in making clear that the federal government is pursuing investigations in Ferguson and in Staten Island with respect to Eric Garner, but also that we're going to look at this in the larger context of the relationship between communities of color and the police. The funding for body cameras for local jurisdictions is a very good first start.

JOAQUIN CASTRO: And also dealing with racial profiling is another thing that the president has spoken about.

CROWLEY: I wanted to ask you as well about immigration, because you all are from Texas, and I believe your governor-elect is one of those leading the charge, he filed suit against the president for failing to enforce U.S. laws, in this case specifically immigration law. Your reaction.

JULIAN CASTRO: It's very clear on the law, the merits, that that lawsuit will not stand up. I expect that it's not going -- the Texas -- that the attorney general, now governor, soon to be governor, will find that that lawsuit does not have merit. The president, by taking that executive action, is very clearly trying to address a broken immigration system, and take a strong first step to fix it, focusing on felons, not families, ensuring that we do everything we can to secure the border, and also give folks who have been here oftentimes for many years the opportunity to pay back taxes, to stay here with their family, to get right by the law as he has said. But what Congress can do and what Attorney General Abbott, soon to be Governor Abbott, should do is to advocate passing a bill, passing legislation so that we can have comprehensive immigration reform. The Senate has already done it. And now it's time for the House to do the same.

JOAQUIN CASTRO: In fact, as a member of Congress I'm hopeful that the Republican Senate and the Republican House will pass their own version of immigration reform --

CROWLEY: But you don't think that will happen, either one of you.

JOAQUIN CASTRO: Even if I vote against it, I hope they will pass their version, because I think what you could have is something akin to the 1990s, where you have a Republican Congress, a Democratic president. They pass their version of a bill, and that starts a negotiation with the White House, where Democratic members of Congress can be supportive of the president, but you have a two-way negotiation going on.

CROWLEY: Mr. Secretary, I have to take advantage of your being here to ask you, the former Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke said recently he had trouble refinancing his home loan. He thinks, and I think a lot of other people think, that the criteria has shifted from letting too many people get mortgages to being way too restrictive. Do you agree with that?

JULIAN CASTRO: I agree with that. A few years ago it was too easy to get a home loan. And now it's too difficult. So what we need to do is we need to make sure that since the pendulum has swung from one extreme to the other, that we get the right balance, that we have the right safe guards in place. That hard working Americans who are ready and responsible to own a home, can get a home loan. There are statistics right now that show that about 1.2 million folks could access good credit and responsibly pay on a home loan, but they're getting locked out of the system. At HUD, we want to do what we can to change that.

CROWLEY: And finally I have to ask since this is a family dynasty show, which one of you do you think will want to make a run at the presidency first?

JOAQUIN CASTRO: It's definitely not me. I'm in Congress. I'll leave the question for him.

JULIAN CASTRO: I think both of us doubt that that's ever going to happen, but both of us also are enjoying the roles that we do have, and it's been neat being twins, and as anybody who is a twin knows, it's a very unique relationship. So we feel like we're having the time of our lives getting to be here and do good work on behalf of the American people.

JOAQUIN CASTRO: And we'll see what the future brings.

CROWLEY: OK, thank you all so much. Never say never in politics. Thank you so much for being here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Candy.

CROWLEY: Joaquin and Julian Castro. We appreciate it. We'll be right back.


CROWLEY: Thank you so much for watching STATE OF THE UNION. I'm Candy Crowley in Washington.

Fareed Zakaria, "GPS," starts next.