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tv   Face the Nation  CBS  December 1, 2013 5:00pm-5:31pm PST

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>> dickerson: welcome back to "face the nation" for some analysis we're joined by former obama chief of staff now cbs news contributor bill daly and i'll start with you. this news from the website it's doing better. is the white house and administration back on the good road here? >> i think it's obviously i'm sure there's a lot of relief at the white house. they know that they got a very deep hole to come out of. obviously if the success that they are predicting is going to begin by virtue of the website being up and running then grows off of that they have taken enormous step to come back. >> dickerson: this is a game of sports analogy here would be singles and doubles. there are no triples or home runs to begin to change this equation. i think this is a very solid double. but it's a long game and a lot
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to be made by them. >> dickerson: bill crystal i'll talk to you about the politics of this. on the one hand republicans have benefited enormously. on the other hand scott walker makes the point that you can't beat something with nothing. and so do republicans have to kind of say, here is what in fact we want to do on health care? >> they do. but i think to be fair republicans have benefited mostly from the substance of obamacare. what is the last hammering, a lot of individuals have been hammering if you want, you like your plan you can keep it. if you like your doctor you can keep it. that doesn't change. -- one system, i think that problem, website in that respect is a bit of distraction we'll see how well it's been fixed it's a good example of why you don't want government to do these things. the private sector, bunch of private companies are competing, i think aetna and cigna would
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pay a price if the website crashed. that doesn't happen with the government which is why government shouldn't run big chunks of our economy like health care. they have some positive alternatives they need to highlight them more and i think need to advance them more i think paul ryan will introduce a pretty big set of republicans alternatives not one giant bill. medicare, medicaid, corporate market he'll introduce something probably right after the new year or at least layout the principles of it so people can say with more comfort, i think more truth that republicans do have a positive agenda. >> dickerson: you write in the "washington post" today about how difficult it is to manage in the federal government. talk about that, is this just a management problem that just hard to do stuff in the federal government? >> it is very difficult to do such a major complex thing for the federal government. project like this, there's plenty of examples that we cite in the op ed piece, federal government trying to do major technological changes.
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to systems and difficulties of them. so i think there is very much a problem of management in the federal government, this is a democrat-republican problem. this administration did put forward a bill to congress on procurement reform, it's not sexy, it's not dramatic but those are the sort of things to run a government and manage it that have to be done. private sector made enormous strides. federal government is way behind. >> dickerson: what they say on bill kristol's side, you have a president who has never run anything this is what happens, what's your response? >> i think anyone who thinks that the president is equivalent to a c.e.o. just make changes, really doesn't understand how the federal government works. you have a system that been built over years that any president, democrat or prepare republicans i'm sure plenty of republican presidents who were frustrated by moving major projects forward.
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i'm just talking about the management of em them it's not sexy, it's not attractive, congress really doesn't pay attention except to make political points. i think at some point a president and the congress have to take some of these issues more seriously than they do. >> dickerson: governor scott walker said, they make decisions have executive decisions with the health care example before us is -- is he right? senators need not apply? >> i think the next republican -- having been a successful republican governor, perhaps in a state that voted for president obama not as easy to be a successful republican governor. being a successful governor is a credential it's not the reason people ultimately vote for you. think of the governors who have become president, ronald reagan, bill clinton, george w. bush they all have national agendas. clinton the new democrat agenda,
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george w. bush, compassionate conservative. think what does the nation need. i think republican governors it's scott walker running for election, they will need to pivot say this is my national agenda not just, i was a good governor in this particular state. >> again, some people forgotten the last republican nominee was a former governor. >> dickerson: let motown iran. you are very critical of the administration, a core objective of u.s. policy they say, but your alternative is war. that you're advocating is a march to war with iran. >> administration itself used to say that all options are on the table, what does that mean except the threat of military force. the administration wants to say military force is out of the question, then they are going to make the deal they just made. if administration is serious about possibility that we really need to stop the nuclear program allow them to continue enrichment, have the ken trifinals and iraq plan that's
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not serious about stopping the iranian nuclear program. that is the president gloated to the financial times yesterday, he's 100% confident they're not giving up their nuclear program. >> dickerson: what is your few of this? >> we that have to remember it was this president with the tough sanctions he brought the world together to have the u.n. implement them. and he has said, so has john kerry, military action is not off the table. everyone hopes to avoid that, there's a process here. let's see where if it ends up in six months. i think to not go down this path or to try to stum women at this point only leads to one conclusion maybe some people want that, i don't think most people do. no question, this president understands what a problem iran is to the world. it has to to the united states. and understand that they will end up with nuclear weapons. >> dickerson: a tough time selling his policy in syria to
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members of his own party in congress what chance does he have on this? >> i think he has a pretty good chance. most people do want to see this six-month process see fit works. and the rest of the world wants it. we are not alone ip this thing. and that's an important factor also. >> giving up the sanctions without getting anything serious is a huge mistakes, very hard to put those back in place in six moisten nine months or 12 months. announced ready to go back to iran on january 1. i think that's very problematic. we negotiated under obama administration to go to the united arab emirates a landmark deal, gave up the right to prospect of enrichment that was considered a great blow against nuclear proliferation. give way on enrichment the uae, saudi arabia, turkey, egypt all saying, are you kidding? iran gets to enrich we don't? i think all barriers are off then to nuclear programs around the middle east and elsewhere. >> dickerson: wonderful. thanks very much. we'll be back in one minute with
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all day pain relief with just two pills. >> dickerson: we turn to authors, doris kearns goodwin and scott berg is the author of a new biography "the president who followed those two men" and "new york times" reporter peter baker who written "days of fire" is here. about bush and cheney in the white house. thank you for joining us. i have a feeling that every president after teddy roosevelt curses hum for coming up with the bully pulpit. if you speak excellently that everybody will come to your point of view and even fdr somebody else you've written about said you can never go faster than the country. so which is it, is it the bully pulpit or have to go along with where the country already is?
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>> probably both. i think what roosevelt understood in his time was that he needed both of his speeches and great command of language, speak softly and carry a big stick. he wasn't moving faster than the country but moving faster than the republican majority and congress wanted him to move. he understood you need the press. he had the most remarkable set of relationships with the press. he had them -- he's running around, he had them in there when he was doing his mail at the end of the day. he was colorful they loved to follow him. there are a lot of reasons why it worked for him. but i think it has did diminished in modern times. because then you've got the speech and newspaper up to fdr, his radio, everybody is listening, 80% of the people. even jfk after reagan only watching the speech now own network you may be watching cable, may be hearing the pundits criticize the speech before it's begun. breaking news comes in, it has been diminished over time.
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probably do curse him. >> dickerson: probably ten twitter responses to what just you said in realtime. johnberg, wilson, he head as the presidency that president is at liberty to be as big a man he can be. then in office he had some trouble with senate republicans, not unlike this president. and he called them, a little group of willful men. talk about that tension. >> i would say he entered office what was put there. he picked up that ball ran with it. came win a very aggressive, progressive agenda. also really took press relations to a new level by being the first president to hold press conferences rather regularly in fact. he was blessed with democratic congress when he arrived which diminished with each congressional election. such that they were beginning to filibuster in ways that the congress had not filibustered before, became rather regular
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practice on behalf of the senate in fact. and wilson then stepped in actually he was early phd president, he was professor of history and jurisprudence. even congressional law. basically he introduced the notion of culture after giving that willful speech in that little group of willful men. now days after his second inaugural we introduced culture to senators. >> i like the we, looking -- living back in that time. >> dickerson: peter baker, we have both lived in the day presidents have good relations with the press, i like this notion of that. in your book talking about constraints on the presidency, the president bush said at the end of his time in office that
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one of the things that struck him how little authority i have. how is that the case, this is the president who launched two wars, he did a lot of things in office. >> he did a lot of things in office. he's talking to an aide, as you say, what surprised you about being president. he said how little authority i have. i think it's a sentiment that a lot of his predecessors even one of his successors might chair. the sentiment you can't do everything that you want to do or we as a public think you ought to do. we have built up the presidency, talked about it so much we do here on this program, throughout the media in which we focus so much on one man. but one part of the system. and in fact there's so many things a president cannot do finds himself frustrated. congress is one thing. president bush had his frustrations with congress, even though he had republican congress much of the time. didn't always get his way. the bureaucracy is another. president bush gives second term address, driven in part from woodrow wilson's idealism about
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spreading the moxie around the world. and finding himself frustrated by his own conflicting priorities and bureaucracy of state department that doesn't buy in to his program. >> dickerson: doris, i'll talk to you about these two presidents, roosevelt and taft. one kind of had it, one didn't. what was the missing piece and why did roosevelt who picked taft miss it? >> it's so interesting. you would have thought that he would have seen that taft who he adored, thought taft had better personality. what he had not seen was that taft didn't like politics. you can't be president if you don't love it. teddy loved it every moment of every day. he couldn't wait to be in the center action. his daughter said he wanted to be the bride at the wedding and the course at the funeral and the baby at the baptism. all of the frustration that our modern presidents have, he would say, why, i love the presidency. and taft didn't like political fighting, didn't like to give
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speeches. he was -- he liked to be a deliberate person wanted to be on the court. that's what everybody said about fdr always a matter of temperament. >> dickerson: temperament question. you mentioned that president wilson was our on phd president now if you want to knock down candidate you call them academic, you suggest that they're detached. how did this man from the world of academia learn to use power, where did that come from? >> did he have a great gift that was oratory. possibly the greatest speaker of the day. he spoke as modern politics now speaks. i think most of the politicians especially fdr i think who was in his cabinet as under secretary learned a lot from woodrow wilson. less brought all this intelligence to bear and i think the country was looking for a new kind of leader then. i think they were looking for sort of the anti-bluster, somebody who spoke straight to the people and did it in a very
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calm, reasoned way. also his intelligence actually proofed to be a very good weapon for him. he really elevated the conversation in this country and for one brief shining moment, there was dialogue in this conversation -- in this country at a very high level. >> dickerson: something about fifth year of presidency. this president having issues, george w. bush had them was there a moment where approval ratings all that have where george bush was not known to be reflective, nevertheless learned something in his second term and took command of the office in a different way, there was a moment where that was true? >> i think he does. in fact the irony is you get to be a better president in your second term by that point the problems have accumulated, baggage so grown that your ability to transcend that is even more limited. i think by the time he looks at iraq in the face, end of 2006 and 2007 he realizes this war
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has gone badly, hasn't gone the way he wants. he throws away three years of policy to go a different direction against all the paparazzi pew already with us -- of the popular wisdom. he's send more troops try to solve the situation. very daring when it was bold decisions the president has made in modern times. i think a function of his comfort is growing confidence after six years despite all of the travails and problems and mistakes. >> dickerson: a final question to all of you. the presidential campaign season never seems to stop, what is one attribute, here is something they took in to office that we might look for in these current people who are running and find out if they got it because it might help in the job they're going to go take. >> i think what teddy roosevelt he went on a whistle-stop train, year after year, month after month he stopped at every station, talked to the people, learned to talk in their language, my harvard friends
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think i talk too folksy i know i'm reaching the people. get out of the white house. even as president and forgetting the campaign be on the road as much as you can talking to people. >> i would say wilson felt very much the same. wilson said, we are not putting this world to sit still and know we are putting it to act. and he came in and from day one had this very aggressive, progressive agenda. he just put it through. largely using his power of oratory. >> i think president bush's strength in some ways obviously, greatest strength is sometimes your weakness he knew himself, he felt comfortable in his own skin. didn't second guess, didn't agonize over decisions and moved on. again sometimes to a fault. i think a little second guessing is probably a healthy thing. he did not spend his time like lbj often did at night just tore mend by the decisions that he had to make.
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difficult as they might have been sometimes for better, for worse. >> dickerson: all three of you write about a strong president and close friend they had. you had colonel house, taft, what was it about those friendships, and big break, all three had breaks. let's talk about that quickly. >> taft and roosevelt had been friends for decades they both were young reformers and bring them in as central person in his cabinet when teddy is on trips around the country or whistle stop tours he's leaving everything to taft. don't worry, taft is on the lid which of course inspires -- but then teddy needed to get back in to office again, progressive taft had become too conservative. when that ruptured, what i understood then it was much more emotional than i thought and heartbreaking until they finally get together at the end. i was so happy they finally got back together. >> when taft handed the piece over to wilson to the white house he said this is the
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loneliest police in the world, i think there is this instant to have a friend, even if it's a dog as some presidents have said that's what you need to get in the white house. most of them are rather solitary creatures, i think. woodrow wilson certainly was. he was his own secretary of state. despite having three secretaries of state. but basically these are men who live in the world of their own mind, their heads. certainly woodrow wilson did. he had great, great fights with two or three of the closest people in his life over the years, going back to his professorial days at princeton. he had a very close friend who succeeded him as president at princeton they had a rift. so it was with colonel house, with joseph tummilty his leading guy in the white house. it was inevitable with wilson. >> dickerson: you try to get at the mystery of the relationship when bush and cheney what's discussed. >> the upshot that we of course over simplify this relationship. it's complicated. not as ''as "saturday night
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live" cartoon figure although that's a -- cheney had power it was because bush authorized him to, enabled him, wanted him to, leaned on him in the beginning but that changed drastically over time. much more than most of us realize. over the eight years moving further apart on policy, foreign policy, domestic policy, economic policy, by the end they are really on opposite sides to almost every major decision coming before them. until finishes with the dramatic break over school, the chief of staff, who wants him pardoned bush refuses. it's a much more of a tale than people imagined it would turn out to be. >> dickerson: peter baker, scott berg, doris concerns good wins. all of these make -- they make good door stops. >> fair enough. >> dickerson: we'll be right back.
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jon thank you for joining us today. bob will be back next week. we hope you join us then. from all of us at "face the nation." happy holidays. an irregular heartbeat, not caused by a heart valve problem. that puts jim at a greater risk of stroke. for years, jim's medicine tied him to a monthly trip to the clinic to get his blood tested. but now, with once-a-day xarelto®, jim's on the move. jim's doctor recommended xarelto®. like warfarin, xarelto® is proven effective to reduce afib-related stroke risk. but xarelto® is the first and only once-a-day prescription blood thinner for patients with afib not caused by a heart valve problem. that doesn't require routine blood monitoring. so jim's not tied to that monitoring routine. [ gps ] proceed to the designated route. not today. [ male announcer ] for patients currently well managed on warfarin, there is limited information on how xarelto® and warfarin compare in reducing the risk of stroke. xarelto® is just one pill a day taken with the evening meal.
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derailment. how passengers describe what was going on inside the cars. good eve the search is on for more victims in a horrific train derailment. how passengers described what was going on inside of the cars. good evening. we have a live look at commuter train that overturned in the bronx. four people are dead, more than 60 others hurt. some apparentlies were thrown from the cars as the train went off of the rails. it is the first fatal accident in the rail line's history. we have the story as told by some of the survivors. >> reporter: a train jumped the tracks with the first car coming to a stop right at the water's edge. it happened on the curved section of track in the bronx where the rivers meet. >> it started to make a loud shifting noise