|Learn more about Pat Toomey at his official website, ToomeyforSenate.com|
GLENN: From Radio City in Midtown Manhattan, this is the third most listened to show in all of America and we're strangely proud of that. Hello, America. My name is Glenn Beck. I'm glad that you're here. There's a ton to do yet today. I want to get right to Pat Toomey. He is a Republican for Senate in Pennsylvania. He's the guy that had a 21 point lead in the polls that scared Arlen Specter and Arlen went... (crying). And he's with us now. Mr. Toomey, how are you, sir?
TOOMEY: I'm doing great, Glenn, how are you?
GLENN: I'm doing good. It's good to have you on the program.
TOOMEY: Well, thank you.
GLENN: So Arlen Specter, a guy who I never voted for even though I lived in Pennsylvania, nor would I vote for because the guy was never a Republican. He was only a guy who just wanted to win elections and do what he wanted.
GLENN: You see this as a good thing, getting away from the Arlen Specters of the Republican Party?
TOOMEY: Well, you know, Glenn, I think we ought to be a party that has a wide range of opinions and that's a perfectly healthy situation, but Arlen Specter never agreed with us on anything. The fundamental idea it seems to me that unites Republicans is belief in the freedom of the individual and limiting the power of government, and Arlen Specter has always been about growing government as long as he's got the opportunity to exercise control, as long as it enhances his power, he's been for more government and less freedom. That just, I don't see a home in the Republican Party for someone who takes that approach.
GLENN: Okay. May I just I hope you don't regret this interview here because I'm not a Republican. I am more and more of a libertarian because I'm sick to death of the Republicans because of what you just said. What you just said is so true but unfortunately there has been too many people that have made their homes and have given us progressive or progressive light as our choices. We have got to offer, whether it's in the Republicans, the Democrats, a third party, I don't care but America is hungry for meat and potatoes, and those meat and potatoes are maximum liberties and minimum government and I haven't seen that in the Republican Party. George Bush didn't offer that.
TOOMEY: No, he didn't. Glenn, you are absolutely right and I think that's why Republicans were thrown out of power. And I repeat, I was in office when I saw this happening. I saw my Republican colleagues voting to grow government. They were just, many of them were just all too happy to capitulate to Bill Clinton and then under George Bush, the absence of a single veto, the explosion of earmarks, the creation of new entitlements, the farm bill. I mean, the list just goes on and on. And I cast a lot of lonely votes because I just thought it was all wrong. I think you're right. I think we've got to stand for something, but I'm hoping that the Republican Party by which I don't refer to the grassroots of people of America, they haven't changed.
TOOMEY: But the elected Republicans, I'm hoping to beginning they will figure this out.
GLENN: Everybody is saying the Republican Party, should it move left, should it move right and I contend it should restore itself where the average person is. The average person is not they are falling in line with Barack Obama because they like him. They like him as a person. But if you look at his ratings on the policies, they do not like those policies. So you need to reconnect with the mainstream of America, which doesn't say let's nationalize banks, let's nationalize industries.
GLENN: But your party went and gave I mean, look, Senator Santorum is a friend of mine, went he went and he endorsed Senator Specter the last time. I mean, and that
TOOMEY: He did, yeah.
GLENN: I think that hurt Senator Santorum.
TOOMEY: I think that hurt him and I agree completely that people across Pennsylvania and I suspect across the country, they like President Obama as an individual, they see him as a charismatic, attractive, charming, persuasive guy. They are not sold on these policies. And if you look at it, I mean, Senator Specter was in lockstep there with all the bailouts, with the massive spending, the unprecedented debt, with the erosion of our freedoms, and he woke up one morning and realized, I can't get reelected in the Republican Party, which shows you that the rank and file Republicans still believe in the idea of limited government and personal freedom.
GLENN: Do you believe, Pat, that there is a that the party has connected to the people? I think the people understand it. I think, you know, these I've seen Republicans say they have got to distance themselves from people like me and they have to distance themselves from tea parties and et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. No, they don't. That is that really is the beginning of, those are the brave people that are standing up right now.
TOOMEY: That's right, yeah.
GLENN: Most people, they don't do those kinds of things.
TOOMEY: That's exactly right.
GLENN: But they are thinking those things.
TOOMEY: Exactly. For every person who's willing and able really to take the time and actually go down to a tea party and wave a sign, there are hundreds, if not thousands of people who share the sentiment but for whatever reason they can't or they won't go out and actually go to a rally. I think
GLENN: So explain to me, explain to me who you think the average American is. Forget about party. What is the average American thinking right now?
TOOMEY: I think the average American is thinking I've got to get up every day and I've got to go to work, I've got to be productive in order to take care of myself and my family, and I am alarmed that the federal government is going to saddle me with obligations and debts and commitments that they've got no right imposing on me and frankly I probably can't afford. I think that's going through the minds of a lot of average Americans.
GLENN: The average American also will say this, and help me answer this: Well, but they tell us if we don't do this, then the whole thing falls apart. I don't want the whole thing to fall apart. What should we do? Nothing is not an answer.
TOOMEY: Yeah, but the average American understands that part of what got us into this mess is too much borrowing and spending and it's pretty hard for the average American to understand how massive increases in borrowing and spending is going to get us out of a problem that was caused by borrowing and spending.
GLENN: What would you be doing with GM right now and Chrysler?
TOOMEY: I think the federal government needs to let GM work out its deal with its bondholders and if they can't do that outside of bankruptcy, they have got to go into bankruptcy. You know, we've got to remember bankruptcy is not a death sentence and it is the longstanding appropriate mechanism for dealing with failed companies. It's an opportunity to salvage whatever assets work, but that's for the bondholders to work out and frankly they are going to have to take a hit and it shouldn't be the taxpayers' problem because the taxpayers didn't cause this.
GLENN: When you lost to Arlen Specter in the primary, you actually endorsed Arlen Specter afterwards, did you not?
TOOMEY: I did, yeah.
TOOMEY: I did that because I thought at the time with a relatively narrow Republican control, we ought to I was very concerned that his opponent, Joe Hoeffel, was an extreme leftwing Democrat and would be even worse than Arlen Specter. So I thought
GLENN: If you had to do it all over again, would you do it? And if not, why?
GLENN: And if so, why?
TOOMEY: Yeah. You know, I haven't given that much thought, Glenn. If I had to do it over again, I think it would be pretty hard to do it after seeing the way he really betrayed all of the principles that I believe in, that I stand for and then even abandoned the party that had supported him for 30 years. I think it would be pretty hard to endorse him again.
GLENN: Then when you endorsed him, the Republicans were like, okay, Pat, all right, good boy. But then he went off to the Club For Growth and hacked them all off again.
TOOMEY: Yeah. Well, there are some people that were pretty annoyed with the Club For Growth. We've got an awful lot of people that love what we do, Glenn. We think that the Republicans ought to stand for limited government and economic freedom. And we support those who do and the Club For Growth has opposed those that don't. We just think, you know, just because you have an R after your name doesn't somehow entitle you to stay in office. You actually should stand for something.
GLENN: Are you concerned at all about the amount of Republicans that are looking I mean, I think the reason why John McCain lost is because he was progressive light. His understanding, he thinks Teddy Roosevelt was the greatest president to ever live. Teddy Roosevelt was a progressive.
GLENN: That believed in taking wealth away from people and capping wealth in the country. Are you concerned at all about the number of people, that there is no real freedom choice between the two? It's what you said about, who was it, maybe Arlen Specter where you were saying that, you know, people just want bigger government and their control of that big government, they're okay. Are you concerned about the number of Republicans that or the lack of people in Washington that see and understand constitutional freedom the way our founders did?
TOOMEY: Well, yes, certainly it was actually one of my biggest surprises. I guess maybe an example of my naivety when I first got elected to congress. I was a small business guy and I discovered just how few people really cared about abiding by the Constitution, respecting the freedoms guaranteed by it. But I have to say I think there's been progress. I thought it was big progress when every single House Republican voted against that awful stimulus bill. I think that was substantial. I see
GLENN: But how many of them would have how many would have done that if George Bush would have proposed the exact same thing?
TOOMEY: Well, this is a good question and we'll never know the answer, Glenn. I'd like to think a lot of them. At least they all voted against it this time. We've got to say that for them. And I also would point out, there are some guys who are absolutely true believers who are gaining influence and prominence, guys like Jim DeMint and Tom Coburn and in the house Mike Pinson, Jeb Hensarling. I'm encouraged by some of the individuals and some of what I think is a growing realization that the party has to get back to the fundamental ideas that, well, gave it a majority and gave Ronald Reagan his success.
GLENN: Orrin Hatch said I don't think there's anybody in the world I'm quoting I don't think there's anybody in the world who believes Toomey can get elected in Pennsylvania. He was asked if the party would back you. He said, quote, I don't think so.
TOOMEY: Well, you know, that's funny. I spoke with Senator Hatch just yesterday and Senator Hatch said I've been a very close friend of Arlen's for a long time and I shouldn't have said that. I don't think he believes that's true. He did actually correct himself shortly thereafter and, of course, the chairman of the state committee of Pennsylvania as well as the chairman of the national Senate committee, they realize I can be elected, I can win in Pennsylvania. You know, Glenn, I was elected three times to a Democrat leaning House seat, and I never lost that seat. So I can win statewide in Pennsylvania with a message about limiting the power of government, defending the freedom of individuals, limiting this huge lurch to the left that this administration is attempting. I'm very confident I can win.
GLENN: You left congress in 2002 because you gave a campaign promise that you would only stay for three terms.
TOOMEY: Yeah, 2004.
GLENN: Serve three terms and then you left. Was it 4?
GLENN: And then you left because you said you would only serve those terms and you did.
GLENN: Okay. May I ask you, I mean, I have a great deal of respect for Orrin Hatch. I think he is a real statesman. I think he is a good man, but I have to tell you I think the thinking like Orrin Hatch is the real problem in the Republican Party, and I say this with reservation because I like him so much. He is a nice, good gentleman that you just don't see gentlemen in Washington very much anymore. But with that being said, he is also the kind of guy who I mean just recently said about Tim Geithner that, you know, he needed to vote for Tim Geithner because he was the guy to get the job done, when Tim Geithner was clearly somebody who is, you know, a little shady in his income tax practices, to say the least. Do you believe that it is time for a or do you think one is coming for a restoration? Barack Obama said last night that he is remaking America. That scares me because I don't want it remade. I want it restored.
TOOMEY: Yeah. Well
GLENN: Do you think a restoration is coming or a remaking is coming?
TOOMEY: Well, I think this administration is trying to transform America into essentially a European style welfare state. I think I don't think they really believe in American exceptionalism. I don't think they believe that the highest political priority ought to be personal freedom. I think they have got a very aggressive effort underway to remake America. Yeah, no, I'm in the camp that we need to restore the freedoms that made us the greatest nation in the history of the world. This is the fundamental battle that's going to take place in Washington. This is why I'm running, Glenn, because the fact is Arlen Specter is more than happy to advance this agenda. In fact, he told President Obama, "I support your agenda, I'm a loyal Democrat," and frankly I think we need some serious opposition to that agenda.
GLENN: How's your fundraising going?
TOOMEY: Well, it started off somewhere between excellent and outstanding and then Senator Specter did his little switcheroo and it just went through the roof. We're having trouble keeping track and keeping up with not keeping track but just keeping up with
GLENN: I was going to say that's really not a good thing, you might want
TOOMEY: No, keeping track, Glenn. But just keeping up, keeping up. Hey, ToomeyforSenate.com. I'd love to have your listeners help us bass this is a battle to restore our freedoms against a very dangerous onslaught.
GLENN: Let me ask you this because I just did a rant on Chris Dodd. He's oh, I've got 30 seconds? I just did a rant on Chris Dodd. He's getting I think a half a million dollars now in fundraising money from out of the state and, like, $4,000 in state.
GLENN: What role do out of state people play? I mean, I think that makes you not a slave to the people that you're supposed to represent in Pennsylvania.
TOOMEY: Well, my I'm getting contributions all over Pennsylvania. I imagine that's where most of the money's coming from, but certainly there are a lot of contributions coming in from outside of Pennsylvania. And Glenn, my view on this is everybody has every right to want to support a candidate they believe in, and it might be if you are from Massachusetts and you believe in limited government and personal freedom, well, you're out of luck, you know? But you can help a candidate
GLENN: Well, yes.
TOOMEY: But you can help a candidate in Pennsylvania who will st ill have the same number of votes in the U.S. Senate and so I welcome that support from anywhere in the country.
GLENN: Okay. Pat Toomey, thank you very much, we'll talk again. Thank you very much.
TOOMEY: Thank you.