tv WSJ at Large With Gerry Baker FOX Business December 23, 2018 5:30am-6:01am EST
plus, start smart on fox business 6-9 a.m. eastern every weekday, mornings with maria. have a good weekend, everybody. that'll do it for us for today. thank you so much for watching. happy holidays from all of us, our fox business famil to yours. merry christmas. see you again next time. ♪ ♪ >> hello, and welcome to "wall street journal" at large. now, from the moment the last vote was cast in november's midterms, the speculation ramped up about the next election. namely, who the democrats would run against president trump in 2020. at "the wall street journal"'s ceo council earlier this month, former national committee interim chair donna brazile was asked how many from their party would throw their hat in the ring. >> 30. [laughter] by the way, i had it capped at
25, and then this weekend i saw bob casey -- [laughter] and we don't know how many people are lurking around in hollywood meeting with george clooney and barbra streisand. >> a lot of people lurking around, as donna brazile says. among the possible candidates already being talked about, former vice president joe biden and senator bernie sanders, both of whom came up short in previous presidential runs. also on the list senator cory booker and congressman beto o'rourke who's become a darling of the left from the red state of texas. but brazile added this thought about the kind of candidate the party will be looking for. >> i still believe the one important ingredient that you will see on the democratic side, i believe there's still a hunger for an outsider. anti-establishment outsider. >> those anti-establishment outsiders could be john
hickenlooper. the 66-year-old two-term governor of colorado is leaving office with a strong record of economic achievement, with the state rising from 40th to 1st in the country in job growth during his tenure. and while the former mayor of denver is known for being a bro-business centrist -- pro-business centrist, he's pushed for tough gun control legislation. so is that the kind of record that can help him win in 2020? governor hickenlooper joins me now. governor, thank you very much, indeed, for joining us. >> you bet, my pleasure. >> i hear you've been spending a bit of time in iowa and new hampshire the past few months. do you like the weather this time of year? >> well, those are lovely landscapes in any season, but we were actually -- we went out there to campaign for some of the democrats and also just to talk to people and see whether someone like myself who is a little bit out of the mainstream, i guess you could say an outsider, whether i could get traction. >> so let me -- i want to go
through your record as golf and also talk a little bit about where you think the democratic party needs to be. let me start by asking you something you said in an interview last year. you said i think the political reality for the democratic party is there's one side saying we weren't liberal enough and another side saying we're too liberal. i think they're both right, is what you said. what do you mean by that? >> well, i think that we need a vision of where to we want the country to go, and that vision is going to include more opportunity for even. we want to get, make in this country back into the place where everyone has a fair shot at creating they are own version of the american dream. within that, you know, is making sure we have universal health care coverage, making sure that our education system really serves everyone. that kind of, you know, bold, broader vision is something that, you know, the whole party believes in. where we disagree sometimes is the process and the pathway by
which we get there. >> we've just come off midterm elections where the democrats took back control of the house with a pretty significant, by a pretty significant margin, with a pretty significant win. obviously, the republicans in's creased their majority in the senate. what lessons do you think the party needs to draw from those elections where the party clearly did well in a lot of the suburban parts of the country? what was the message that resonated, do you think? >> well, i think there were a lot of messages. one is that this is a diverse country, and i think we see this is going to be the most diverse congress in the history of the country in terms of representation by women and minorities, two native americans, two muslim women in, representing different districts in the new congress. so that came through loud and clear. but i think we also saw the power of health care, that people do care about universal coverage, but there were a lot of different ways that were
proposed in these different campaigns of how we get there. i think we also saw a lot of people that recognize that making sure, a, we have a strong economy and quality jobs but, b, that we have opportunity for every, well, what i always say is kids of all ages to be able to have access to, you know, jobs that really provide them with meaningful careers. >> again, going back to when you say the party, you know, there's strengths both in being liberal and arguably being not so liberal, what are the kind of liberal things that you think work for the party? where are the issues? i mentioned in my opening, you know, that you've been critical of the president on immigration. you've been very pro-gun control including signing some legislation in colorado. what, where are those issues resonating, and how are they resonating with the country? >> well, i think you see a lot of these issues resonating all over the country. you know, colorado's a purple state, but a few years ago we
were able to pass -- we were able to pass universal background checks. i think if you go state by state, one of the ways we looked at the previous year getting to half of the gun purchases, did we actually catch anybody. and the statistics just in colorado, there were 38 people who had been convicted of homicide, you know, overall over 3,000 violent criminals who had applied to buy a gun, and we stopped them. and i think that's the kind of thing where you say, wow, if that's what you find talking to, you know, getting to half the gun purchases, then why wouldn't we have universal background checks? i think you'll find those similar statistics in every state. so i guess the vision clearly is that we should have universal background checks across the country, right? but then right behind that is the fact that how do you get there, and one way is just to listen harder to the people who are against it and present them facts. don't try and beat them over the head, but let them recognize for themselves that this is keeping guns out of the hands of
dangerous individuals. >> what about other measures? i mean, maybe restricting certain types of weapons. there's support in the democratic party for that. a lot of opposition, obviously, from republicans and the nra in particular. do you think that's something that could be done at the federal -- you'd propose doing at the federal level? >> well, i think red flag laws is what we refer to as making it, you know, as a red flag. so if someone has got a history of mental health or is going through a severe episode e and we have a number of safeguards to make sure that people can't unfairly have their guns taken, but going through a real challenging psychological period, it makes sense to take the, their guns away for a period of time until they, you know, come back to their normal self. >> who makes that determination? how does, how do we get there? >> well, generally, there's a call, usually a family member or a loved person, a loved one from that person, you know, notifies authorities and says we're
alarmed. we're very concerned about this. and then there's a process. you have to get a medical professional to vouch for this and make sure that this is, this person really is going through a severe episode, and then there's a process in some cases you actually end up having to go through a judge. but we got that american civil liberties union to sign off on it, we got a number of different organizations that said, all right, this is tricky, but having guns in the hands of people that are, you know, going through real mental trauma is very dangerous. >> but a lot of people would say this could be abused, right? i mean, a lot of people believe passionately in their right to own a gun, and they don't like the idea of some third party coming along and saying, hey, you're not mentally equipped to have one, i'm going to take it away. isn't that just big government intruding in their lives and freedoms, isn't it? >> well, i think there's got to be a balance. and, obviously, it's usually their family member or a loved one who is reaching out to health care professionals and
saying, boy, this is a really difficult time and whoever the person is in their life, and we don't think they should have access to a gun. obviously, that could be abused in some way. but we've built in safeguards, right? you have to go through a number of steps. you have to have health care professionals, you know? the courts have to make sure that there's no abuse. i mean, this country, we go above and beyond protecting people's right to bear arms. and i'm not sure there's another industrialized country on earth that has such protections as we do. that being said, we're having a mass shooting, you know, pretty much every -- once a week these days almost, in many weeks twice a week. there's got to be a balance somehow. >> thanks, governor. i want to come back. we're just going to take a break. coming up next, we'll look more at where the democratic party is heading with governor hickenlooper. we'll be right back. ♪ ♪
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struggling -- 40th in job creation, as you mentioned -- we asked each county what's your vision of your future? you know, 20 years, 40 years from now what kind of businesses, what kind of jobs do you want in your community? and we've brought all that together into one, we called it the bottom-up economic development plan with the colorado blueprint, and we heard the same thing all over. people want less red tape and bureaucracy, they want a state that is pro-business but with the highest environmental standards, the highest ethical standards, but they want it to be a place where small business and entrepreneurs are celebrated. but that -- >> sorry to interrupt, but that doesn't sound like a very, if i may say so, a message that may work well with the democratic party, less red tape, that means less regulation. everything i hear right now is there isn't enough regulation. the economy needs to be more regulated, there needs to be, you know, more supervision of companies. you pursued a policy of cutting regulation in colorado. is that going to work? >> well, we got rid of red tape,
and there's a big difference between red tape and regulation. so we also in that same period, you know, i could say and i have said again and again that we're going to be pro-business with but with the highest ethical and environmental standards. we were the only state that was able to get the environmental community to sit down with the oil and gas industry and create regulations around finaltive emissions, right? -- fugitive emissions, methane that was escaping from holding tanks or pipelinings. over about 14 minutes, and let me tell you, it was like trying to get the hatfields and mccoys together, but they voluntarily agreed they would spend somewhere between $50-$60 million a year, but it would be the equivalent of removing 320,000 automobiles from the roads. i think that is the way regulation should happen where you get both sides together in a room, the government is a convener, and you end up where the public recognizes that this industry is responsible, they're going to do everything they can to make sure there's no
pollution from their activities. but at the same time, we're going to make sure that they don't waste their money and that they get their fair share of credit. and, you know, you've got to have regulation. and it's essential to capitalism succeeding, but it can't just be layered up with bureaucracy and red tape. >> the federal government is running a huge deficit at the moarnlgt likely to get bigger over the next year. again, if you're running for president, whether you're running for president or not, something's going to have to be done presumably. do you think that the next president, the next administration is going to have to ask congress to raise taxes? >> well, i think we have to -- i mean, part of what this next campaign season for 2020 is going to address is what are the various levers. i mean, the tax cuts that president trump pushed through, if you look at them, they're probably the largest, the largest disrupter of our deficit that we've seen in ages, in decades. and i think the cost of that to
the country is far beyond what people are recognizing today. and a lot of those tax cuts, you know, roughly half the tax cuts went to the stock market, to the corporations and companies publicly traded. if you look at roughly a third or almost a third of the holdings of all those companies are foreign individuals. >> so to be clear, you think they need to be rolled back. you'd roll back the trump tax cuts. >> i didn't say that. what we have to do is look at where did those measures, who did they benefit, and is that who we intended? did we want $350 billion a year to be a benefit to foreign countries, foreign individuals, or do we want to look at how to we create a tax system that is more fair and allows us to really promote jobs and not, you know, not at the expense of, you know, a strong economy. >> but, again, if you've got a big deficit, from what you're saying, it sounds as though you think corporations got a big tax
cut. to close that deficit, it sounds like you'd be in favor of raising taxes on companies, is that right? >> no, i didn't say that. again, i think what we need to do is to sit down and look at what are the different levers. are the taxes that we have in place the right ones. and i think that that notion of is there a way to examine payroll taxes. how can we maybe lower payroll taxes but at the same time replace them with some other revenue method? i certainly don't think we're going to be able to lower taxes in the near future because right now, as you point out, the deficit's going crazy. but one way to address that deficit is looking at are there loopholes, unnecessary tax deductions that one industry is getting at the advantage of another or certain companies in an industry are getting at the advantage of other companies -- >> let me, governor, just stop you there. we've got to take another break, but we'll be back. just ahead, we'll discuss the governor's thoughts on some of the other big issues and the $64,000 question, is he running for president. stay with
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campaigns, and as you pointed out earlier, we spent some time in iowa and new hampshire, and, you know, tried to ask democratic activists, you know, how they reconcile some of those questions you asked of how do you have a progress e vision but also recognize the essential need for a strong economy to allow that vision to be achieved. >> so when do you expect to make the decision? >> i think, you know, what we've been saying is somewhere probably in early, middle march. again, we haven't -- we don't have a firm timeline, but we're trying to figure out, a, make sure that we can have traction, be able to raise money, be competitive. and at the same time, we're also trying to make sure that our message is something that people are going to take to heart, that they're going to care about. >> early part of next year? sorry to press you. >> absolutely. yeah, i'd say late february, sometime in march, maybe the beginning of april. my goal is to shoot for march.
>> what's the biggest challenge you think you've got to overcome as a presidential candidate? >> well, it's interesting, some of the things we've done here, you know, the legalization of recreational marijuana have been hotly debated on both sides, and we've tried to be the fair witness and say, all right, we're not -- we weren't for it, but we're going to make darn sure that we do the best job we can to -- can we make a regulatory system work around recreational marijuana that's legal. and i think, actually, we've made a lot of progress there. but the pro-marijuana people think we haven't been enthusiastic enough, and the anti-marijuana people think we've been way too permissive. that probably means we -- >> you're out there, though, right at the front of this issue. there are a lot of people in this country who have some concerns about recreational marijuana legalization or decriminalization. you've been pretty bold there in colorado, and that may be something that presumably is going to be raised against you. >> well, i'm sure it'll be raised against me but also
raised for me. have i been too much for it or too much against it? the u.s. has always been, you know, a federation, a system of states being the experimenters, the laboratories of democracy. and i think what colorado, the hand we were dealt was we were the ones that were going to go first and seeing can you create a regulatory framework around marijuana. and i think we've done a pretty good job. again, am i going to get arrows? yes. am i going to get cheap shots, you know, from both sides? probably. >> you're ready for all those jokes about what have you been smoking to think you could possibly be president of the united states. [laughter] let me ask you, you mentioned earlier that a hallmark of the democratic party's victory in the house of representatives last month was diversity. a lot of women, a lot of ethnic minorities were elected to congress. there's a strong mood in the democratic party that, just as in 2016, the democratic party
nominated a woman, that the party should look for diversity in its presidential nominee next time around. is it really likely in the current democratic party that a white man such as yourself is going to get the nomination? >> well, i think that's part of what the primary campaign is going to examine, and we're going to go to each state and make our case. certainly, i've been a believer in the power of diversity long before i got into public life. you know, i never ran for student council or, you know, class president when i was a kid. i ran for mayor of denver 16 years ago was the first time, and yet since that time i've tried to always make sure that we had more african-americans, more latinos, more women in positions of power. is that -- >> you seem to be saying we want to promote diversity, but a lot of people are saying it shouldn't matter what the color of your skin or what your
program is. which one are you saying? >> i'm saying that diversity matters, but your program matters maybe more. how you lead and whether you provide opportunities for women and people of color should have a powerful impact on who we select, you know, to carry the banner for the democratic party. >> in just a few words as we heard at the start of the program, there could be 20, 30 democratic candidates at the outset. what will distinguish you? what's going to make you the one that will stand out in that field? >> well, you know, i'm the -- i was a geologist who got laid off in that kind of long recession in the 1980s and had to reinvent myself. and i'm one of the very few people who actually started a business from scratch, made it succeed. i helped revitalize a big part of denver. i think that's a lot of what the country has to do, revitalize huge parts of the country that have been left behind. i think my experience might be seen as useful there. >> great. ing governor john hickenlooper, thank you so much for joining
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is unique, however. he's the first to quit in protest of the president. and as a result, his exit could have more impact than any of the others. general mattis' decision seems to have been prompted by his opposition to the president's move this week to pull u.s. troops out of syria. but he also told the president that he doesn't share his values, in particular he suggested the president doesn't respect traditional u.s. allies and hasn't been standing up strongly enough to adversaries such as russia and china. that's a serious allegation that goes right to the heart of foreign policy. general mattis told president trump he'd be better served by someone who shares his views. but as reaction to the secretary's resignation shows, in the republican foreign policy world it's not easy to see who fits that bill. this is a critical moment for the president and the country. does he now double down on his, to put it mildly, highly unconventional approach to u.s. global strategy, or does the mattis resignation force him to
change tack? we'll know soon enough. well, that's it for tonight. i'll be back next week with more in-depth interviews right here on "wall street journal" at large. >> welcome to the journal editorial report. i am paul gigot. partial start on the government underway as the midnight deadline came and went. the president blooming democrats for the standup despite vowing to take the government shutdown. are there any closer to a conference? we have a wall street columnist -- dan,