CBS News/NJ debate transcript, part 1
Newt Gingrich: I don't think you do.
Scott Pelley: Would you agree that the Taliban--
Newt Gingrich: Look, I-- I think this is so much bigger and deeper a problem than we've talked about as a country that we-- we don't have a clue how hard this is gonna be. First of all, the Taliban survives for the ex-- the very same reason that historically we said guerillas always survive, which is they have a sanctuary. The sanctuary's Pakistan. You're never gonna stop the Taliban as long as they can sort of hide. And you-- and you have proof every week in new bombings and new killings and new training. So I think this has to be a much larger strategic discussion that starts with, frankly, Pakistan on the one end and Iran on the other, because I-- Afghanistan is in between the two countries and is the least important of the three countries.
Major Garrett: Related to that, Mr. Cain, I'd like to pick up on a point that Speaker Gingrich just made. You have said about foreign policy, "America needs to be clear about who its friends are and who its foes are." So this evening, sir, Pakistan, friend or foe?
Herman Cain: We don't know. Because Pakistan-- it's not clear, because Pakistan is where Osama bin Laden was found and eliminated. Secondly, Pakistanis have a conversation with President Karzai from Afghanistan and they-- and President Karzai has said that if the United States gets into a dispute with Pakistan, then Afghanistan's gonna side with Pakistan. There is a lot of clarity missing, like Speaker Gingrich says, in this whole region. And they are all interrelated. So there isn't a clear answer as to whether or not Pakistan is a friend or foe. That relationship must be reevaluated.
Major Garrett: If you were president, sir, and your national security council asked you what questions you would want answered to find out a better answer to this very question, what would you tell 'em?
Herman Cain: I would ask them what commitment is Pakistan willing to make to assure the United States of America that they are a friend or of-- or a foe. And be specific about that. Will they make commitments relative to the commitment of their military, if we have to make commitments? Are they willing to come to some regional-- agreement about what we need to do? We need a regional strategy in that area of the world, such that all of our allies, wor-- we work together in order to come up with those things that would be mutually beneficial to everyone. Those are the questions that need to be asked.
Scott Pelley: Governor Perry, why is Pakistan playing a double game, saying that it supports the United States one moment and then supporting terrorists who are killing American troops the next? What's going on there?
Rick Perry: Listen, I-- I think we're havin'-- an interesting conversation here, but the deeper one-- that the speaker makes a reference to is the whole issue of-- of foreign aid. And we need a president of the United States working with a Congress that sends a clear message to every country. It doesn't make any difference whether it's Pakistan or whether it's Afghanistan or whether it's India.
The foreign aid budget in my administration for every country is gonna start at zero dollars. Zero dollars. And then we'll have a conversation. Then we'll have a conversation in this country about whether or not a penny of our taxpayer dollar needs to go into those countries. And Pakistan is clearly sending us messages, Mitt. It's clearly sending us messages that they-- they don't deserve our foreign aid that we're getting, because they're not bein' honest with us. American soldiers' lives are being put at jeopardy because of that country and the decisions that they're make--
--and it's time for us as a country to say no to foreign aid to countries that don't support the United States of America.
Scott Pelley: That's time, Governor. Governor, let me give you 30 seconds in the follow up to go back to the question, "Why is Pakistan playing this double game?" Help us understand-
Rick Perry: Look, they've been doing this--
Scott Pelley: --what's going on there.
Rick Perry: They've been doing this for years. Their political people are not who are in charge of that country. It's the military. It's the secret service. That's who's running that country. And I don't trust 'em. And we need to send clear messages. We need to do foreign aid completely different. I'm tellin' you, no dollar's goin' into those countries. As a matter of fact, if they want any American aid, any country, unless we say differently, the American manufacturing, big companies, small companies, going in to help create economic--
Scott Pelley: And that's--
Rick Perry: --impacts in those countries--
Scott Pelley: --time, Governor. Thank you.
Rick Perry: --rather than just dollars flowin' into some administration.
Scott Pelley: Thank you very much.
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