A: There are some other issues where we clearly disagree. I didn't ask my wife when we first started dating what her party affiliation was, and by the time I figured it out, I was smitten. It is easy to demonize other people that you don't know. So I'm really proud that even though I'm socially very progressive and fiscally I'm very responsible--and I'll pay for priorities; I'm not afraid to say that--I have a lot of folks who are Republicans that are like my wife, and are kind of freaked out by some of the things going on at the national level and don't know what happened to their party. I want them to know that we don't have to agree on all the issues, but they know they can work with somebody like me. I'll never compromise on my principles; I'll also not demonize people if they don't agree with me on everything.
Q: Senator Sanders, have you established a list of what it means to be a progressive that is unrealistic?
SANDERS: Not at all. The reality is that we have one of lowest voter turnouts of any major country because people have given up on the political process. The reality is there are trillions of dollars going from the middle class to the top 1 percent. The reality is we have a corrupt campaign finance system which separates the people's needs from what Congress is doing. What we have to do is wage a political revolution where we demand the government represent us and not just campaign contributors.
SANDERS: We should not only talk the talk, but walk the walk. I am proud to be the only candidate who does not have a Super PAC, who's not raising huge sums of money from Wall Street and special interests. Never believed it would happen that we have raised 3.5 million individual contributions, averaging $27 dollars a piece. That is what the political revolution means.
SANDERS: It is true. I am the longest- serving independent in the history of the United States Congress. Vermont sent me to Washington as an independent. On the other hand, when I was in the House for 16 years, I caucused with the Democrats. In the Senate for nine years , I caucused with the Democrats. I do want to see major changes in the Democratic Party. I want to see working people and young people come into the party in a way that doesn't exist now. I want a 50-state strategy so the Democratic Party is not just the party of 25 states.
CLINTON: You know, the person who first put out the idea of a 50-state party strategy is former Governor Howard Dean, who is with us tonight.
CLINTON: Because I am a progressive who gets things done. The root of that word, progressive, is progress. I've heard Senator Sanders' comments, and it's caused me to wonder who's left in the progressive wing of the Democratic Party. Under his definition, President Obama is not progressive because he took donations from Wall Street; Vice President Biden is not progressive because he supported Keystone; Senator Shaheen is not progressive because she supports the trade pact.
SANDERS: Secretary Clinton has the support of far more governors, mayors, members of the House. She has the entire establishment behind her. I don't deny it. I am proud that we have over a million people who have contributed to our campaign. That we have had meetings where 25,000-30,000 people have come out. That our campaign is a campaign of the people, by the people, and for the people. Secretary Clinton does represent the establishment. I represent ordinary Americans.
CLINTON: I've got to just jump in here because, honestly, Senator Sanders is the only person who would characterize me, a woman running to be the first woman president, as exemplifying the establishment.
CLINTON: Senator Sanders has said he wants to run a positive campaign. But there is this attack that he is putting forth, which really comes down to anybody who ever took donations or speaking fees from any interest group has to be bought. I absolutely reject that. You will not find that I ever changed a view or a vote because of any donation that I ever received. I have represented my constituents to the best of my abilities, and I'm very proud of that. Let's talk about the issues that divide us.
CLINTON: Absolutely I can. You know, before it was emails, it was Benghazi, and the Republicans were stirring up so much controversy about that. I testified for 11 hours, answered their questions. They basically said "yeah, didn't get her. We tried." That was all a political ploy.
Sununu, now serving his third term on the Executive Council, announced his intention to run for the state's top job at an annual GOP Labor Day picnic. Sununu is the son of former Gov. John H. Sununu and the brother of former U.S. Sen. John E. Sununu. Asked whether he's worried about voters being skeptical of political dynasties, he gives an answer similar to that of GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush, the son and brother of ex-presidents.
Smith: Strongly Disagree.
Question topic: Judeo-Christian values established a framework of morality which permitted our system of limited government.
Smith: Strongly Agree.
Question topic: Briefly describe your spiritual beliefs and values.
In those races and many others, Shaheen had to find ways to appeal to the state's huge swath of independents. N.H. has open primaries, meaning voters can choose whether they want a Democratic or Republican ballot; playing strictly to the base isn't really an option.
So it's no surprise she's not publicly embracing Obama. Shaheen's problem is that she's backed her party on every major issue. Republicans cite a statistic that Shaheen voted with Obama 99% of the time last year. During a 2008 debate, Shaheen struggled to identify a national issue where she opposed her party's leadership. Posed the same question during the interview last week, she cited her opposition to the TARP bailout and an Internet sales tax.
"It's not about me, nor is it about any other candidate. It's not about any political party, it's not about republicans or democrats, it's about saving the United States of America."
Smith spent three terms in the U.S. House and two in the Senate before losing a 2002 Republican primary to John E. Sununu.
HUNTSMAN: It is the fulfillment of a citizenry being able to live out the meaning of our founding documents--life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. In N.H., people take that very seriously. You know what else they take seriously? The idea of real leadership. I've heard a lot of obfuscating up here [on the debate stage], the blame game. You know what the people of this country are waiting for? They want a leader who is going to unify, who's going to bring us together. Because that's what leadership is all about. It's not about taking on different groups and vilifying them for whatever reason. It's about projecting a vision for a more hopeful tomorrow. That's why there is no trust in this country today, and that's why, as president, I'm going to attack that trust deficit just as aggressively as I attack that economic deficit.
PERRY: I make a very proud statement and a fact that we have a president that's a socialist. I don't think our Founding Fathers wanted America to be a socialist country. So I disagree with that premise that somehow or another that President Obama reflects our Founding Fathers. He doesn't. He talks about having a more powerful, more centralized, more consuming and costly federal government. I am a Tenth Amendment-believing governor. I truly believe that we need a president that respects the Tenth Amendment. The states will considerably do a better job than a one-size-fits-all Washington, D.C., led by this president.
ROMNEY: I'm an optimist, and I certainly hope it turns around. We have 25 million people that are out of work or have stopped looking for work, and also a lot of people who've got part-time jobs and need full-time employment. I hope we continue to see good news. But it's not thanks to President Obama. His policies have made the recession deeper, and his policies have made the recovery more tepid. As a result of everything from Obamacare to Dodd-Frank to a whole host of new regulations put on American businesses, he's made it harder for small entrepreneurs and big businesses to decide to invest in America and to grow jobs here. And so the president is going to try and take responsibility for things getting better. You know, it's like the rooster taking responsibility for the sunrise. He didn't do it. In fact, what he did was make things harder for America to get going again.
SANTORUM: We need a leader, someone who has the experience to go out and be the commander-in-chief.
Q: Were you talking about Gov. Romney?
SANTORUM: Yeah, of course. Business experience doesn't necessarily match up with being the commander-in-chief.
ROMNEY: People who spend their life in Washington don't understand what happens out in the real economy. They think that people who start businesses are just managers. Entrepreneurs that start a business from the ground up and get customers and get investors and hire people to join them, those people are leaders. And the chance to lead in free enterprise is extraordinarily critical to also being able to lead a state, like I led in Massachusetts, and, by the way, lead the Olympics. My experience is in leadership. I wish people in Washington had experience in the real economy first, before they went there, and they'd understand some of the real lessons of leadership.
SANTORUM: Well, we need a leader, someone who has the experience to go out and be the commander-in-chief. I've experienced 8 years on the Armed Services Committee. We need someone who can go out and paint a vision of what America's strength is about, let our allies know that they can trust us, let our enemies know that they have to respect us, and if they cross us, they should fear us.
Q: Were you talking about Gov. Romney with the manager part?
SANTORUM: The manager part? Yeah, well, of course I was talking about Gov. Romney. Business experience doesn't necessarily match up with being the commander-in-chief of this country. The commander-in-chief of this country isn't a CEO. It's someone who has to lead. You can't direct members of Congress as to how you do things. You've got to lead and inspire. And I've been the one that's been able to do that.
RON PAUL: In a survey, he came out as one of the top corrupt individuals because he took so much money from the lobbyists. But what really counts is his record: he's a big government, big spending individual.
SANTORUM: The group that called me corrupt was a group called CREW. If you haven't been sued by CREW, you're not a conservative. It's a ridiculous charge. I'm a conservative. I'm not a libertarian. I believe in some government. I do believe that as a senator from Pennsylvania that I had a responsibility to go out there and represent the interests of my state. I am not a libertarian, Ron--you vote against everything. I don't vote against everything. I do vote for some spending. I do think government has a role to play.
SANTORUM: The governor used a term that I shrink from. And it's one that I don't think we should be using as Republicans, "middle class." There are no classes in America We are a country that doesn't put people in classes. There may be middle income people, but the idea that we're going to buy into the class warfare arguments of Barack Obama is something that should not be part of the Republican lexicon. That's their job: divide, separate, put one group against another. That's not the language that I'll use as president. I'll use the language of bringing people together. So if you want someone that's a clear contrast, that has a strong record, has a vision for this country that's going to get this country growing & appeal to blue collar workers & deliver that message, that we care about you, too, not just about Wall Street and bailing them out, then I'm the guy that you want to put in the nomination
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