"Face the Nation" transcript: April 1, 2012
Vice President Joe Biden talks about the 2012 presidential race with Bob Schieffer in Milwaukee on March 29. (CBS News)
BOB SCHIEFFER: Some of our stations are leaving us now, but for most of you, we'll be right back with a new page two of FACE THE NATION.
BOB SCHIEFFER: And welcome back now to FACE THE NATION and our new page two. At the top of the page today, the Republican side to all of this, and we begin with Newt Gingrich, who's been a frequent visitor to FACE THE NATION during this campaign. Thank you for coming again, Mister Gingrich.
NEWT GINGRICH (Republican Presidential Candidate/Former House Speaker): (INDISTINCT).
BOB SCHIEFFER: You have the awesome responsibility of being the responder to the Vice President this morning. He-- he talked about your proposal to get gas to two dollars and fifty cents a gallon. He said, though, that Republicans are emasculating all efforts to deal with renewable energy, and that in fact, you have no policy.
NEWT GINGRICH: Well, our policy is pretty straightforward. If you look at natural gas, where we have in fact pumped a lot more, volume's gone up eleven percent, the price has dropped so dramatically since 2008, that if the same thing happened to gasoline, it would be at dollar thirteen a gallon. Now, I've argued that we ought to have an American independence energy policy, so no future President will bow to a Saudi King. And I've argued that if the President would open up the federal government's land, open up offshore drilling, and sign the Keystone Pipeline which will bring seven hundred thousand barrels a day to Houston from Canada that those-- that combined series of things would bring down the price of gasoline dramatically.
BOB SCHIEFFER: Well, I mean-- but isn't it very difficult for this President or any President to bring down gas prices because the big factor here is the fact that the Chinese now need so much oil. You have turmoil in the Middle East. You have this situation going on with Iran. Some of these things the President can't control.
NEWT GINGRICH: No, but-- but that would mean you don't-- you'd want even more American energy because you want a margin of error for the things you can't control. In World War II, we pumped eighty-three percent of the world's oil. We were enormously powerful as an oil producer. The new technologies allow us in North Dakota to jump from a hundred and fifty million barrels in reserve to twenty-four billion barrels in reserve. Nobody in Washington has noticed the revolution in technology which should make America the leading oil producing country in the world if President Obama weren't so anti-American energy. He spends money on Solyndra which fails, while attacking the oil companies who could bring down the price of gasoline. That's an-- that's an irrational policy if you care about the pocketbook of the American people.
BOB SCHIEFFER: Let's talk a little bit about what Mitt Romney said about the open-mic where Barack Obama told the Russian president, look, give me space here, I'll have more flexibility after the election. The Vice President says, look, he is just stating reality.
NEWT GINGRICH: First of all, I thought you getting Biden to explain Obama's open-mic was such a nice shift of direction from Obama having to explain Biden's open-mic that it was almost worth watching just for that. What people have to worry about is when-- when a President who has already proven he is a radical says to a Russian president, give me some space so I can get re-elected because then I'll have real flexibility--you have to wonder, real flexibility for what, and you also have to ask yourself how many foreign leaders has he said that to without an open-mic. How many other countries are counting on Barack Obama to be, quote, "flexible" after the election and what kind of flexibility is it that he doesn't want to share with the American people right now?
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