Liberty & Justice Episode 3 Transcript:
Matt Whitaker [00:00:05] Well, I haven't had that kind of reception since I was playing football in Iowa, Doug, but welcome to Liberty and Justice on CPAC. Now you can also catch us on Whitaker.TV. I am joined and the first guest of today is former member of Congress Doug Collins. Doug, how are you?
Doug Collins [00:00:20] Doing great? It is pretty awesome. Is a good time. Good time to be here.
Matt Whitaker [00:00:24] Well, I am so glad you could join us. You know, we have so much to talk about, but I think the first thing I want to talk to you about is how we first met. So I wanted to tell the story of how we first met. And then the second time we met,
Doug Collins [00:00:34] the first time we met, it was pretty good because I recorded this town it for posterity, so people don't go read about it. I got to meet you and we were getting ready because Jerry Nadler had this obsession with you. He wanted to, he said. I've got to have Matt Whitaker I got to get. He's going to be my first witness of the 2019 Congress. And so we went to meet with you just to talk about it and met you in the what was the old Robert Kennedy Conference Room
Matt Whitaker [00:00:54] Yes, Robert Kennedy's conference room, right.
Doug Collins [00:00:55] And you were sitting there and we were talking about the upcoming year, what was coming up? You were taking over the hearing, which was nothing but trying to get at you. And so we had a great conversation, but it was funny. One of the funny things, if you if you've never seen Matt, I'm thinking might as a large guy, Matt Iowa fed and grown
Matt Whitaker [00:01:16] It is just the chairs are small. That's the problem.
Doug Collins [00:01:17] Well, that was the chair problem in that room that he's leaning back in his chair and I said, Oh my goodness, this is a famous room, although that chair is going to break and I couldn't pick him up if I tried. But we had a great conversation because I found out one thing that out of everything the media was trying to portray about you at that time. You came with a deep love and want to make the Department of Justice better, and that was what was not being portrayed, and that was our first time to me.
Matt Whitaker [00:01:39] Yeah. And I remember that was impactful because really history will record, Doug and your book records, and it's to remind me the title is the clock in the calendar. Yeah, it's a great book. I have my copy. I should have brought it for you to sign, but the clock in the calendar make you grab your copy. I'll have it. We'll have show notes links at Whitaker.TV and Conservative.org , but you really came in the way it was told to me by staff and you got to watch out for staff. As you know, it's not the same as principals talking, but you know, we the staff came to me and said the ranking member on Judiciary Committee is not certain that you should do this like make them subpoena you or just, you know, run out the clock because quite frankly, Bill Barr was going to be confirmed within a week or two of that hearing date. And you, I mean, and not that you didn't. We didn't know each other and you didn't know sort of that. I was unafraid and I wasn't going to let the bastards get me.
Doug Collins [00:02:37] that was it.
Matt Whitaker [00:02:37] You know, you come with a message. I think initially, like, don't do this, you don't need to do this, you know, let somebody that's better looking and, you know. But and more effective I think through our conversation, we had a legitimate conversation. And what we talked about was why I wanted to do it, why I thought it was important, why that platform and if it was truly an oversight hearing, why we could talk about the work that the Department of Justice was doing. And your point is like, Listen, Matt, the Democrats are out for blood. They want to take you down. And you know what? You don't have a lot of friends in the Republicans, either, because Jim Jordan is not happy with the Republicans. John Ratcliffe not happy with this administration's response to a lot of these issues surrounding the Mueller hoax. And so I think, you know, by the end of the end of the meeting, I I'm going to go do it. The American people deserve to hear my answers. And so I walk into the to the hearing room that day and you're there and remind me your opening remarks was I have contributed to the fund, but tell tell our friends here about your fund that you raised.
Doug Collins [00:03:41] Yeah, that was an interesting day for popcorn. For anybody who likes popcorn, that was the day because this was the hearing. And one of the reasons and I'm glad that he actually said that was in the sense of saying, you know, Matt, that I understood the hill and part of my job, especially coming to you was is to say, Look, I'm the ranking member and I felt a responsibility to to my members, but also to the you coming in to say, Look, I need to tell you what you're coming into. We'll protect you as best we can. But there was we knew the Democrats were just out there for it. So I decided to start the hearing off because I had griped and moaned about it. So I started off and I said, Everybody, you know, at the end of the day, there is going to be a show hearing. This is what it was going to be. Get the popcorn ready and we'll go. I Laughed when a reporter asked me about the popcorn machine and I said, You know what? So we ended up getting a popcorn machine committed to it, and it's still in the air. And I don't
Matt Whitaker [00:04:24] know for the fun. They had got it up and there is a popcorn machine and the ranking members office, and it serves really good popcorn.
Doug Collins [00:04:32] It is good popcorn. Yeah. So it because with the Nadler show, you need popcorn.
Matt Whitaker [00:04:35] Yeah. And so that was how we first met and that was we were part of a trial by fire. And like you said, while you didn't say it in your opening remarks, you were like, This is a show trial. This has nothing to do with actually an oversight hearing, the Department of Justice. This has nothing to do with the resources that we need to fight the opioid crisis, violent crime in America. These Democrats are not serious. All they care about is, you know that you might fire Bob Mueller.
Doug Collins [00:05:00] Exactly. And this was the sad part about this because I had. And you've got to remember this. It was almost like a Jekyll and Hyde, I mean, from Nadler, Hakeem Jeffries, all these folks we had just gotten to where we had actually done a lot of good work on criminal justice reform. You and I are still working on that. And they didn't want to talk a bit about it. And those are some things that had moved the ball along. You were willing to do that. They wouldn't listen because all they were obsessed with was Mueller, because they believed it was going to get Donald Trump. And they found out it didn't.
Matt Whitaker [00:05:26] Yeah. And so we are a few minutes from taking a break and you're going to stay with us through the break. Yeah, but one of the questions that I have to ask is, you decided, even though you enjoyed being the ranking member on the House Judiciary Committee and is somebody once described it, they said it's the closest you'll be to the bar scene in Star Wars in your life. Yeah, and I wouldn't disagree exactly what it was. You know, it was a lot of strong personalities, a lot of lawyers, you know, whether you believe that's a good thing or a bad thing, it's just the way it is. But you decided to give that up and to go run for the Senate right in your home state of Georgia. I did. And you know, God has a plan for our lives, and it's not always the doors we think we're walking through. But he has open up a tremendous opportunity for you to talk a little bit about this and then we'll head in the break and then we come back what will expand what it has
Doug Collins [00:06:15] and we put up a great fight. We were outspent 10 to one. Sixty million dollars, almost still almost won, and we didn't get our primary. But at the end of the day, I believe, like you said, God had a plan because I believe conservatives have got to understand. We've got to have a better message. We've got to talk about the things that matter. And this gives me a platform now. The podcast, the Doug Collins podcast, you got DougCollinspodcast.com. Go listen to it. It gives us an overview of conservative messaging, not just in politics, but in life, because we've got to realize there are people out there who don't come to CPAC who don't go to play. They need a message. We got to do that.
Matt Whitaker [00:06:43] Yeah. Well, let's I'm going to put a pin in that because this is the discussion that I've been trying to get to, which is what is the future of conservativism in America? What is the agenda that it's going to win America? And so when we come back more with Doug Collins here on CPAC now and Liberty and Justice with Matt Whitaker.
Speaker 3 [00:07:12] It is my first time. I it's so important that everybody come to CPAC because we need to show the diversity of our party. Yes.
Speaker 4 [00:07:46] And that's why folks come from everywhere to go to CPAC, because it's where you get inspired
Speaker 3 [00:08:01] ActionScript.
Matt Whitaker [00:08:20] All right. Welcome back to Liberty and Justice. I'm Matt Whitaker, your host on CPAC Now. Also on Whitaker.TV. We're joined by former member of Congress Doug Collins, who before we took a break, we were going to talk about the future of conservatism in the United States of America, how we win back states like your home state of Georgia, which currently has two Democrat senators. I didn't think we'd ever see that in our lifetime. But once you talk about the things that work for conservatives and then also talk about how boring conservatives can be.
Doug Collins [00:08:49] Well, I think these folks behind us are very, very conservative house. I know that's why you come to CPAC is it's almost like going, you know, sort of it's like going to church. You get out and you see everybody you agree with. But folks, this is not reality. OK, out in the real world, people, you know, don't have the same opinions as we do as conservatives. What I found when I was the Republican ranking member of Judiciary, but also as the vice chair, I got to travel the country. Here's the thing that I found so much is that Democrats are really good at talking about the results of the people. What does it matter? We, as conservatives, how many times have you heard a conservative get on a podcast or talk show? Well, we had two point eight percent growth this year. Isn't that good?
Matt Whitaker [00:09:29] That's really exciting Doug
Doug Collins [00:09:30] I was glad to be here at the Rotary Club.
Matt Whitaker [00:09:31] You are killing my podcast Doug.
Doug Collins [00:09:33] Because here's what you got. I mean, I'm sitting out there. I wanted to take a fork and stick it in my leg. I wouldn't vote for the person. I mean, and I'm here to support them, the one to support them. Here's what you got to do. When is it like this? And I'll go back to one. And when we did the Tax Cut and Jobs Act, which actually helped people, I hurt so many of my colleagues going out saying, here's how much the stock market grew. Nobody on Main Street cared about how stock market grew. If it did, your four one k great. What they cared about was their job. They cared about their kids, they cared about their family. I had a business man highlight this for me, he said. Doug, I appreciate the fact there was a situation in the tax hike that said you could save your depreciate large capital expenses. Pretty cool for geeks on accounting, but not for everybody else. So we talk about an
Matt Whitaker [00:10:11] You mean accelerated depreciation is not something we're gonna talk about next.
Doug Collins [00:10:14] No, we're not. If you're an accountant in a room, I love you, but I ain't talking about it. OK? But what did he? He said, I love and I appreciate you show me this big ol machine is a bending metal. This is the coolest thing ever. You bend it like this thing in your building.
Matt Whitaker [00:10:27] Don't stick your arm in there.
Doug Collins [00:10:28] No, don't get close to it.
Matt Whitaker [00:10:29] That would make the podcast better, though.
Doug Collins [00:10:31] It would be the ultimate highlight for them, too. But he said, he said, Doug, I appreciate you letting me buy this, he said. But I want you bought in a pointed over to three people standing there, he said, and I'll use the name Jim, Suzi and Bobby. He said last year, Jim, Susie and Bobby didn't have full time jobs. I can only hire him part time, he said. Now, because I could get this piece of equipment, they have full time jobs. They now have the money in the resource to send their kids to band camp, to send their kids to school, to make sure that they have the things that we as conservatives cannot. And I will refuse to give up to liberals that we're the party that concerned about people because we're the ones that actually believe in them. Could the liberals believe in government? We believe in people.
Matt Whitaker [00:11:06] You're right. That is so true. And that and that the people are sovereign. Yes. And the people should control their own destiny and succeed or fail on their own terms. And this is so important. And it's and you're right. You know, I think sometimes the messaging is is not as effective as it could be. The messaging needs to be. Not only are we fun like the folks are CPAC as you see it, but but in addition to being fun, our ideas work and I think of my home state of Iowa where where they just cut taxes by 50 percent income taxes, 50 percent on a way to go to zero. Yep, that that is money in the pocket. And now with Joe Biden's inflation tax, where gas prices are through the roof. Bread, beer, which I care about a lot. And all those expenses, you know, are increasing in Americans lives. So more money in your pocket, a better life for your family, a future for your kids that you know that they can succeed on their own terms. That's what American people care about, and that's what conservatives care about.
Doug Collins [00:12:06] Well, exactly. Look, I understand something and I want it because liberals will take what we say and they move it off a little bit and they say, Well, you know, liberals also, conservatives hate government. They don't think no government has a role. The founders actually set a policy for how our government should be limited and functional. The rest of it should be left to us, and I think this is the part it says, you know, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. You don't say the guarantee of happiness. I don't want a guarantee of happiness because if I had if the government had to guarantee my happiness, they have to guarantee your happiness. You're happy. And look, I'm going to get out there and work. I won't buy happiness, but it comes at different levels and the government can't guarantee that. And when we understand that, that's how we go to any community. Red, yellow, black, white race has got to be an issue. And I'm tired of also CPAC folks. I'm tired of conservatives saying, Well, that's not a district for us. That's not that's not a neighborhood for us. No. Conservatism works no matter where it's at. We've got to be happy warriors like Reagan and go to everywhere.
Matt Whitaker [00:13:00] Yes, that is so important. The Happy Warrior. And you're absolutely right. Just because this district's D-plus 16, that doesn't mean that once we communicate our ideas and our ideals that we can't win hearts and minds because the American people are with us is, I think, for too long the mainstream media and Democrats have fed them this line that they'll take care of them and they just don't-- their policies are what's what's hurting America right now. Our policies are going to win the day. And so I am so glad, Doug, that you joined us again. How can people find out more about you and your podcast, The Best
Doug Collins [00:13:33] Place to go to the DougCollinsPodcast.com, the DougCollinsPodcast.com You can sign up for our email if you sign up for Collins. You get all the podcast. Go there and that's where you find us.
Matt Whitaker [00:13:42] All right. Well, you you have so much more in your heart for service. We do even talk about your service to our country, not only as a member of Congress, but in the military. And I know you just said you've done amazing things and you are a young man with a lot more to give. So I can't wait to see what's next for you. Thanks. Thank you for joining us. We'll be right back here on CPAC Now this is liberty and justice with Matt Whitaker.
Speaker 3 [00:14:17] Hey, everyone, it's cool in here, we're out here at C-PAC 20, 22 in the beautiful Orlando, Florida, and we're currently going around to the attendees doing a trivia game for a chance to win a $15 gift card to the C-PAC store. So let's go test the knowledge of our attendees. So we're going to start off pretty easy. Which party freed the slaves during the Civil War? Republican. All right. Good year. Did America declare independence 1776? All right. Too easy. Too easy. So I'll give you a hand. So the plane is called Air Force One. So what is the helicopter called helicopter one or heli one disappointed? What was the first state of the United States? Delaware. Okay. All right. What was the first governing document of the United States Bill of Rights? Actually, no, it's the Articles of Confederation. But that was before he caught himself, and he got it right. He gets the $15 gift card. Here you go. Yes, sir. He's going to look pretty famous right now walking with me. All right, so what? The next question's even harder. Where did the Mayflower doc? Oh, Plymouth Rock? Oh my gosh, he got that one right here. Excuse me, coming through? Pardon me. Excuse me. Which political party created the welfare system to keep minorities dependent on the government Democrat? And she's off to a great start.
Speaker 4 [00:15:57] I did. I just had a Biden moment. I thought I'll have those to answer for a second. He had a brain freeze. Yeah, but you know, I really didn't know it was Marine One because he's never invited me on it. So I'll vote again. I just can't wait till we all vote again with pen and paper voter I.D. in our hands. I can't wait to
Speaker 4 [00:16:28] be able to go out to vote again. Good. You know, I came here to do trivia. But I got a concert from.
Matt Whitaker [00:16:49] Welcome back to CPAC now I'm Matt Whitaker, host of Liberty and Justice. You can watch us every Friday night, seven p.m. ET Premiering once a week. I'm excited to have my good friend Scott Walker, former governor of Wisconsin. We're a little bit competitive because I'm from Iowa and you're from Wisconsin, but.
Scott Walker [00:17:07] All good Midwesterners. Big Ten!
Matt Whitaker [00:17:07] Exactly. Great Midwesterns. So we're it's not Minnesota where the extroverts look at your shoes and introverts look at their own, but we get some of that.
Scott Walker [00:17:16] You know why Iowa doesn't have a professional football team because Minnesota would want one too!
Matt Whitaker [00:17:22] That's a great one. And when I was in Minnesota, just at the early part of my legal career, it's a fun story. But we digress. When the Timberwolves were going to leave home and one of the sportswriters said Minneapolis without professional sports, is a cold Omaha, so I knew you would like that joke. Anyway, we're here on CPAC Now we're at CPAC. I know that one of the issues that you're working really hard on is on our college campuses. Talk about your efforts there and what you're seeing and how we have hope for the future and our and the future of our republic. Quite frankly,.
Scott Walker [00:17:54] We do. I'm proud to be the President. Young America's Foundation. YAF.org if people are interested? We partner with CPAC back. YAF was one of the original sponsors with ACU all the way back to the 70s of YAF and we hold conferences, we have members. We we've helped students can serve students in about 2000 campuses across America
Matt Whitaker [00:18:13] A great chapter at the University of Iowa, my alma mater
Scott Walker [00:18:14] We do an active one, which they've done a great job on. But what gives me hope is, you know, years ago, when it started with William F. Buckley and Reagan and Goldwater, it was on college campuses in '98 when we took over the Reagan Ranch, we expanded in the high school. This year, we're going into middle school because we've seen the radical indoctrination doesn't just start in college, it's starting younger and younger and younger. That's the bad. That's that's the impetus. That's the thing we need to act on. The good news is particularly college. We see when we bring conservative voices to campus, we start spreading the truth. It resonates the reason that young people are liberal, radical, progressive. What are you going to call them, it's not necessarily because that's what they truly believe. It's because that's all they've ever heard. We got to counter that.
Matt Whitaker [00:18:56] Yeah. And I have my daughter. Allison is working here at CPAC this week. She's interning for Senator Ernst in Washington, D.C. She's going to be a senior at the University of Iowa next year. So these are issues that I hear firsthand from her experiences and and how you know. And the University of Iowa had some challenges with with discriminating against, you know, freedom loving religious groups and the like. And so, you know, this is I mean, I know you guys it's a it's a big organization. You know, you're looking for not only for the Conservatives, but you're providing programing to win those hearts and minds where people are forming ideas and talk about some of the initiatives, some of the things that that Young America Foundation is doing in the campuses.
Scott Walker [00:19:37] We do a number of different things. We bring in speakers, so one of the most famous ones people are heard of. He started out relatively unknown years ago, but now kids all over the country know Ben Shapiro. Yes, but he's one of the many speakers Ben Shapiro, Michael Katie Pavlich and Peter Schweitzer. We're going to hear from relaunches alum who wrote the Clinton Cash and now just put out Red Handed. There's just so many great examples. We bring speakers on campus, but more than just bringing him to that particular campus, as we did University Iowa. It's then putting it up on YouTube. And what's been so encouraging for me is to hear from to see the numbers escalate. Of YouTube subscribers and people click in. I'm convinced it's not because of preprogrammed stuff that we put on. It's because we put the speakers and particularly the Q&A up they want to see. How do you respond to that crazy student? How do you respond to that radical teaching assistant? How do you push back? The other thing we do on campus is expose. We have a tip line. YAF.org/tips at neighboring Iowa State? Yeah. One of the professors we exposed last semester was an English teacher who told the students, Come into the class, you can't write a paper speaking out against same-sex marriage. You can't do one against BLM, you can't do one against abortion or you're out. We expose that. And thankfully in Iowa, there's at least enough common sense among the Board of Regents. They said, No, that's not free speech.
Matt Whitaker [00:20:58] Exactly. We have a very smart legislature and a governor that's that's keen on these issues. But this is, you know, there's so many directions that you and I could talk about. I mean, you were one of the early attention of the mob where, you know, when you did your reforms that were good for the taxpayers and good for the citizens of Wisconsin. You had the people who were, you know, being impacted negatively and should be because, you know, this was something that needed to be reconciled. You know, collective bargaining reform, I think, was the topic. Yes. You were recalled, I mean, you ran for governor one recalled one and then won reelection.
Scott Walker [00:21:34] Three times in four years.
Matt Whitaker [00:21:35] Three times in four years, you were trial tested. And so you've the mob has come against you, but certainly cancel culture. And like you said, the content that YAF is putting up and to train and educate on the important topics, you know, how do you make sure that it is evergreen and stays out there because, you know, YouTube is owned by Google and they're not always the friend of conservatives?
Scott Walker [00:21:57] Well, we got to fight in every battle. You understand that. You got to fight every place. We can cede no ground. We're at every campus we can get on and we're going to push for others. We're going to be on every platform we can, not only those that we work with on the conservative side, but anyone we can get on before we get bumped off. You know, somebody I talked about as being on YouTube last year, we rolled out our long game, which is our multi-year plan to help take back our schools, take back our colleges, take back our universities, take back our culture. And one of the talk show host I was on said, Why are you on YouTube? Said They're awful. I say because I'm ceding any ground anywhere. I'm going to fight everywhere I can. And we've got to do that. And that's again part of our long game plan to do just that.
Matt Whitaker [00:22:35] Again, how can people learn more about your organization?
Scott Walker [00:22:40] YAF.org YAF.org if you're a student or, you know one, maybe it's your son or daughter maybe its grandson, granddaughter, neighbor, kid, come to our conferences. They can come up to the Reagan Ranch, which is a once in a lifetime experience we've got. We just had a freedom conference in Atlanta. We've got a national conference in D.C. We've got them all over the country and we'd love to have more students participate.
Matt Whitaker [00:23:01] All right, Governor Scott Walker, thank you for being my guest on Liberty and Justice. You're watching us on Conservative.org and CPAC Now every Friday, seven p.m.. God bless the United States of America. Thank you so much, Governor.
Scott Walker [00:23:14] My pleasure.