"Face the Nation" transcripts, July 8, 2012: Sen. McCain, Sen. Durbin, ex-Gov Barbour
JAN CRAWFORD: I think that is exactly right. He had to get in line.
BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): He was under enormous pressure here.
NORAH O'DONNELL (CBS News Chief White House Correspondent): Right. He had to get in line with Republicans, people were unhappy. The interesting thing is that when many people thought that President Obama wasn't going to talk about health care reform that on this bus tour he actually brought it up again, in an interview criticizing Mitt Romney for his-- for calling it for six years a penalty and now switching back and calling it a tax and the President used the words, he can't just switch on a dime. Well, I asked some of the President's advisors why are you bringing up the health care thing? They said it's an issue of values and principles that it's a sign once again that Mitt Romney does thing just for politics. He'll say anything to get elected and that was sort of the sub-context of this bus tour that we were on, it was a values debate. I mean we heard the President talking about how he vacationed as a child on Greyhound buses and going to Howard Johnson's or HoJo's and in some ways that was a direct contrast--
BOB SCHIEFFER: Riding the dog--
NORAH O'DONNELL: Right, riding the dog. A contrast to Mitt Romney who was in New Hampshire on his speedboat and on Jet Ski. So I think this interesting subtext of the relate-- of the campaign is coming out about, which is essentially class warfare.
BOB SCHIEFFER: I want to ask all of you--what about this-- this criticism that's coming out of the Wall Street Journal from The Weekly Standard, both of which are-- are owned, obviously by Rupert Murdoch. This-- and basically they say that the campaign is too insular; they've got to make some changes. How did the Romney folks say, you were out there covering Romney, Jan, how did they feel about that?
JAN CRAWFORD: They believe and they are very focused that they can kind of tune out a lot of that outside criticism. They think they have a plan. People are always naysayers. Go back Bill Kristol has been critical of every Republican campaign for the last twenty years. So, I mean, they are really going to stick to this plan of focusing on the economy. They believe they have a plan. They have specifics and they are going to be talking about that. So they are not swayed as much by some of that external criticism as a lot of people might think. They are bringing in a couple of people, as Norah has reported, to help with the messaging. You are going to seeing a few different people on television--
BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): Is he going to lay out more specifics for us because you heard Haley Barbour just now say, yeah, most people go, it's a referendum on-- on Obama, but is he going to lay out more specifics than what we know about?
JAN CRAWFORD: He will, and he has. I mean, he said, that he's, you know, given us this fifty-nine-point plan, go look at it on his website and he will continue to talk about that, but he's-- he-- he wants to again keep the focus on the President and his performance on the economy, and he told me, I mean, flat out told me, if I keep talking about the economy, I'm going to win.
BOB SCHIEFFER: John?
JOHN DICKERSON: Well, we got to remember where this started was out of this hiccup in the Romney campaign on health care. About forty-eight hours where Romney was out of position and ultimately he had to contradict one of his own senior aides about whether this was a tax. But what-- what I hear from my reporting in the Romney campaign is they recognize some things have not gone well but they are a tight-knit group. They are not going to change much. What they are going to do, though, is fix some of these communications problems but then get more specific. They think it's a question of timing. You-- you do it at the right time, but they do recognize that basically there is something more they have to give people other than just saying Barack Obama has done a bad job, they got to give people something as Haley Barbour said, you got to give them something to vote for and that's what they will start focusing on next.
BOB SCHIEFFER: What about the President, Norah? Is he going to give us more of an agenda than he has revealed to us thus far? Because he's getting some of the same criticism from-- from Democrats that Governor Romney is getting from Republicans?
NORAH O'DONNELL: No doubt and I think you saw the President on this bus tour take a hit, certainly because the jobs numbers came out and they are not great job numbers and he didn't introduce any new economic policies instead pushing sort of the same jobs plan that he has been unable to get through the Republican contrast. But these new ideas and the contrast of visions, I think, will come this summer. It's coming in the next month or two. Largely again, we've been about defining the candidates and you see about three-quarters of President Obama's ads have been negative ads against Mitt Romney pointing out his record on Bain, accusing him of being someone who outsources jobs and also sort of the same idea on this bus tour. Then it's going to come this contrasting visions and I'm told by campaign advisors they are just scrap-- they just scratched the surface on Mitt Romney's business record and background. And that's why they want this to be a referendum. They want to make everybody look at Mitt Romney and not at what's happened under President Obama. So that's what's going on.
BOB SCHIEFFER: All right. Well, we have to bring this to a close because we're going to talk about baseball.
And we'll be back in one minute with that discussion.
BOB SCHIEFFER: Well, it is summer, it is hot, but the good news is it is time for the All-Star baseball break. The annual midseason battle of the best of baseball, we've invited our own All-Star team to talk about it and the role that baseball has always played in American lives. At the table here, historian Doris Kearns Goodwin who is a baseball fan first and foremost, even though she's a great historian; Sports Illustrated senior editor Frank Deford, author of the book, Overtime: My Life as a Sportswriter. Also with us from MLB Network Studios, former All-Star Harold Reynolds, a former Seattle and Baltimore player, who will be covering the All-Star game for MLB Network. And in Kansas City, ESPN's Jayson Stark, who joins us from the field of Tuesday's game.
Doris, let me just start with you. What is it about baseball that-- that has given it its great staying power? We've been playing baseball in this country since the Civil War, Andrew-- I mean, Abraham Lincoln--
DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN (Author, Wait till Next Year): My guy.
BOB SCHIEFFER: --played baseball. Yeah, you later wrote a book of some notice about it. What do you think it is about this game?
- Leigh Ann Caldwell
Leigh Ann Caldwell is a political reporter for CBSNews.com.Follow on Twitter »
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