GLENN: Okay. Now we have Wayne Allyn Root on the phone who Stu has given his — I don’t want to say you have endorsed but you have given his — Stu has said this guy is worthy of the main show.
STU: Yeah, he is worthy of the main show. I think he is worth looking into seriously.
GLENN: And he’s on the phone with us now. He’s a libertarian candidate for President of the United States. Wayne Allyn Root.
ROOT: Hey, Glenn, how are you?
GLENN: Very good. How are you?
ROOT: I’m fantastic.
GLENN: All right. Would you — you can’t have it but would you like a Kenneth Cole concealed weapon handbag?
ROOT: I’d love it. It would be a great souvenir.
GLENN: Okay, that’s where I — we are on good footing so far. Now may I take you to the next level? You’re a libertarian and you may be a libertarian that I could actually really kind of get behind, and I’m only basing that on your initials spell out "War."
ROOT: Well, you know, I think you would get behind me because I’m a lifetime Republican conservative who changed to libertarian the last year and a half because I got sick of George W. Bush and the big government Republicans that are currently running the GOP.
GLENN: Hang on just a second. I need to — go ahead. Talk some more to me.
ROOT: And I think I’m a little bit different, Glenn. I think that’s why you like me. I’m a son of a butcher. I’m a small businessman. I’m a home school parent. I’ve got a brand-new baby. I want education reform, I’m a fiscal conservative and I’m strong on defense. I think those are all things that you can get behind.
GLENN: You’re speaking my language here. Now, usually the devil is in the details. So let’s find the devil, shall we?
GLENN: Let’s start with — oh, let’s just go for the big one. Let’s start with war.
GLENN: Tell me about — tell me where you stand on Islamic extremism, what we’re fighting, how we should fight it, et cetera, et cetera.
ROOT: Well, first of all, you know, it’s not like Ron Paul where I don’t believe that the war on terror is a fraud. I don’t believe that at all. I believe there’s a terrible enemy out there. I think yesterday pointed that out with the terrorist attack at the seminary in Jerusalem. We’ve got a horrible enemy out there. I believe Israel is the canary in the coal mine. They are just like us and the Islamic extremists want to — what they want to do to us eventually.
GLENN: This is like a conservative — this is like a conservative porno right now. I haven’t heard words like this for a while.
ROOT: I think what yesterday pointed out is nothing is sacred. They will kill women, they will children, they will kill the elderly, they will kill religious scholars in the same place. They are all infidels, they don’t care. You know what they pointed out, that seminary shooting? The reason that more people weren’t killed is one of the students in the seminary was armed with a rifle, and in America I’m a big gun guy, by the way, and I believe the reason we have so many shootings in America is not because guns are bad. It’s because the people are getting killed in these slaughters are unarmed, they are complete unarmed because the Government will not let us fight back. So that’s a good example of why we should have different kinds of gun attitudes in the United States of America.
GLENN: Hang on. I’m just — I’m just —
ROOT: So you wanted to know about war.
GLENN: No, I’m just cradling my Kenneth Cole concealed handbag right now. It’s crying. It’s weeping. Kenneth Cole’s bag is weeping right now.
ROOT: We all know who Kenneth Cole is married to, by the way, Mario Cuomo’s daughter. I’ve never been a Kenneth Cole fan. I wouldn’t buy his shoes right off the bat.
GLENN: So let’s see. The war in Iraq, the war in Iraq, were you for the war in Iraq? Are you for the war in Iraq?
ROOT: I was for the war in Iraq in the beginning, as I think everyone was. Hillary Clinton voted for it. We all had information that led us to believe we would are safer if we had the war. But I’ve come a long way since then. I am no longer for the war. I don’t want to drop our guns and run with our tail between our legs but I do want to get out as quickly as possible. I supported the surge and I believe now the surge has proven successful. We should declare victory. We achieved our goal. We built a democracy. Let’s get the heck out and the lesson I think I learned is that nation-building is a failure and I never want to do it again. We can’t afford it, first of all. Even our great country can’t afford it with a little country like Iraq.
GLENN: Where do you stand, where do you stand on Iran?
ROOT: Well, where do I stand on it? Let’s see what the facts are. At the moment I don’t trust the information we get from the CIA very much due to the fact that they were pretty wrong on Iraq, don’t you think?
ROOT: I wouldn’t be in any rush to jump into Iran. I don’t think we can afford any more wars quickly but certainly I would use any diplomatic means, any United Nations means, and I’m no fan of the United Nations. I can’t stand them. I think we should get out of them. But I would use any means to put pressure on Iran. I would do anything at this point to avoid another war. War is expensive, it’s unaffordable, it doesn’t even achieve our goal. The end result is we keep butting in all over the world and the wrong things seem to happen instead of the right things after all.
GLENN: If you had to drill through a caribou’s head to get oil in ANWR, I know you would avoid drilling through his head but if that were the only choice, would you do it?
ROOT: Well action actually I —
GLENN: Cover your ears, Kenneth Cole.
ROOT: To avoid terrorism we’ve got. Right now we depend on foreign oil and it’s the liberal environmental whackos who are stopping us from finding oil in Alaska, in the Gulf of Mexico, off the California coast, off the Florida coast. That oil could wean us off our dependence on foreign oil, which is nothing more than paying the people who are supporting the terrorists who are killing us.
ROOT: So yes, of course I would.
GLENN: His name is Wayne Allyn Root. He is running for President of the United States. His website is RootforAmerica.com. You went to school with Barack Obama. You also had an amazing experience when you were in school in Ronald Reagan, the day that Ronald Reagan was shot and I want you to share both of those stories. We’ll do it when we come back.
So far I like him. I’m waiting for the shoe to drop, but so far I like him.
GLENN: Wayne Allyn Root is the libertarian that is running for President of the United States. Wayne, how come there’s — I mean, how come — you know, what happened? Why weren’t you in the national debates or — you know?
ROOT: Well, I mean, the national debates were Republican and Democrat. I haven’t had the opportunity yet but if we come to September, October, November and I believe the threshold is to have 15% of the national vote in the national polls, you get to be in those national debates. Certainly the classmate of Barack Obama, we graduated on the same day. I’m going to call on my classmate to include me in those debates.
GLENN: Hang on just a second. You were actual — did you have any classes with Barack Obama?
ROOT: Well, I’m sure I did. I just never knew him. We were both political science majors at the same college, Columbia University, graduated in the class of ’83. So I guarantee you we were sitting in the same classes together but I did not know him. It’s probably a graduating class of 600 or 700. So it’s very possible to be in the same class and not know a person. I didn’t know everyone in the whole class.
GLENN: Right. Were you — did you have the political leanings then that you have now?
ROOT: Oh, yeah. I actually represented Ronald Reagan in the class debates in 1979 or ’80, I think it was.
GLENN: So you were popular. You were popular on campus.
ROOT: Well, funny enough they took a vote before the Columbia class debate and it was 85% for Jimmy Carter. Then we had the debate and they asked the students to vote and I won in a landslide, representing Ronald Reagan. Quite amazing actually.
GLENN: It’s weird how facts actually play a role in people’s thinking sometimes.
ROOT: Not too often with liberals but once in a while.
GLENN: You were in class the day that Ronald Reagan was shot.
GLENN: And I have heard the story told that Obama may have been in that class.
ROOT: Well, who knows. I’m not going to say he’s in or he wasn’t. I’m just going to say it was the most popular political science class at Columbia University. It was Professor Fuke (ph), it was actually taught at the women’s school at Columbia University and it was about 250 kids in a theater in a round. The door opened behind us. Somebody ran in completely out of breath and started talking loudly, and everybody turned around to look and it was just so loud, it was reverberating, echoed into this large hall. And the kid said, President Reagan’s been shot, he’s been assassinated. He’s dead. That was the first words out of his mouth and I guess that was the first erroneous report in the media was he’s dead or this kid shot to that conclusion or whatever. But in any case that’s what we all heard. At that moment, you know, I literally — I’m a pretty rough kid born on the streets of New York, right on the Bronx, been in my share of street fights and I don’t cry and tears started running down my eyes because this was my hero and here he was shot. I couldn’t believe it. Do you know what the reaction was of the rest of the class? The entire class, after about a two second delay, jumped up like it was the middle of a football game and started screaming, yeah! High-fiving and hugging each other because Ronald Reagan had been assassinated. That was when I realized what the liberal intellectual elite in this country are really like and I was tell you, I don’t know if Barack Obama was in that class. I have no idea. So I’m not saying that. But I do know that those were my fellow students at my Ivy League college and I do know that most of them today are the elite media and elite political and the elite journalists and the elite lawyers of our society. Every one of them has gone on to something special and this is their true leading in life. They cheer and high-five and hug each other and jump up and down like a football game and a touchdown’s been scored at the thought that a George W. Bush or a Ronald Reagan or maybe me, Wayne Root, has just been assassinated who has conservative fiscal ideas. And that’s a sad, sad thing, sad conclusion to come to.
GLENN: Wayne Allyn Root, I tell you, you’ve earned a second longer interview on the program. I’m intrigued to learn more about you and learn more about what you stand for.
ROOT: Could I sum up one thing that I think is real important to get out?
ROOT: Well, you know, never before in the history of America two classmates run against each other for President. If Barack indeed has the nomination, and we don’t know that, I have a funny feeling Hillary may find a way to steal the nomination at the convention, but Barack certainly has a lead that she probably cannot pass a delegate. There’s never been a more stark contrast in comparing the life of two people that graduated the same college on the same exact day 25 years ago, and I just think it’s important to note in those 25 years I’ve done nothing but started small businesses with my own money, created jobs, risked my own money, helped other people that worked for me achieve the American dream, paid health insurance and payroll taxes for others. I think I understand the economy where small business, the majority is nongovernment jobs.
Barack Obama sits those 25 years, talks about a very different big government existence. He’s been a lawyer, he’s been a community activist, which is a professional protestor on his own definition, and he’s been a guy who lives off government paychecks as a state legislator in Illinois and now as a U.S. senator.
GLENN: Wayne, I’ve got to run but we will have you on again, sir. Wayne Allyn Root, it is RootforAmerica.com.