Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Gov. John Hickenlooper, (D-CO) said Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton has had to deal with more attacks and criticisms because she is a woman.
Partial transcript as follows:
DICKERSON: Joining us now from Denver is Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, the author of “The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics.” Governor, you say your book is a call to action for nerds, but it’s also very candid. Don’t you know you’re in politics? You’re not supposed to be candid.
GOV. JOHN HICKENLOOPER (D), COLORADO: Well, but, you know, one of the reasons I wrote it was, you know, I got into politics because I wanted people to belief in government, believe in elected officials. And I thought, if you’re going to write this book, put in warts and all, right? Be authentic. And I think hopefully that helps people believe in elected officials a little bit.
DICKERSON: If — people are pretty cynical about public service, about getting involved. Give them — make your pitch, make the pitch to people who watch a lot of our politics and think it’s just bickering. Why should they get involved in a system that — that looks so unappealing?
HICKENLOOPER: Well, and, again, there’s — there’s some unappealing aspects of public life, but you get to work with the smartest people. You get to take on the most challenging issues. And you begin to — if you work hard enough, you can make — make an impact. You can begin to find solutions and create results. And, you know, that’s part — some of the best part in life is to have work that’s real and work with, you know, wonderful, talented people.
DICKERSON: You are known, among other things, for having not run negative ads in your campaigns. We are facing a presidential election in which it’s not that the ads are not only going to be negative, but it’s on Twitter, it’s in the comments. What — what is your guidance and advice for the national campaign that’s — that’s likely to have so much negativity as a part of it?
HICKENLOOPER: Well, I think you have to push back against it as hard as you can. You know, the example I always use in business, companies that are archrivals, right, that hate each other, right? Coca-Cola and Pepsi. Coke doesn’t do attack ads against Pepsi because they’d work. Pepsi’s sales would go down. Pepsi would have no choice but to counterattack Coke. Coke would counterattack Pepsi. You depress sails in the entire product category of soft drinks.
What we’re doing is we’re depressing the product category of democracy. And especially young people just tuning out. I mean we do that at our own peril. We let that happen at — at our own risk.
DICKERSON: When you — you are a super delegate. We talked to Bernie Sanders earlier in the show and he said that super delegates from states that he won should just go along with him. So he won Colorado. Are you going to take his advice and vote for Bernie Sanders when it comes convention time?
HICKENLOOPER: Well, you know, the super delegate thing, it was started 30 years ago. And the idea is that people that have been in elected office for a longer period of time maybe have a longer perspective on things, that they’ll bring some stability. And we’re looking at — you know, I admire so many of the things that — the issue that Bernie has raised. Senator Sanders has really pushed out, you know, why is it that we’re not retraining people more rapidly for the new economy, why is it that kids are having such large debt when they finish college. But I think that Hillary is more likely to, in an incremental, kind of a hard, problem solving approach, is going to get results sooner I think than him. And I think that’s where I’m intend — I should support who I think is really going to get — do the best job.
DICKERSON: He’s arguing that the — the latest revolutions about her e-mail — private e-mail server are something that super delegates should take in mind. In other words, another shoe might drop and she wouldn’t be in as good a position in the general election as he would be. What’s your response to that argument?
HICKENLOOPER: Well, a, I don’t think there’s another shoe that’s going to drop. I think they’ve parsed this about as much as they can. I mean she was trying to protect family and friends from, you know, the unwanted scrutiny. She said she made a mistake, right? Let’s move on. I think she’s probably the most prepared person to run for high political office in this country in several decades. And some people say, and I’m not — you know, you’d have to look at it, if she — if she was a man, all this stuff wouldn’t be the same at the same level. That there’s an awful lot of criticism being used — I mean literally millions of dollars of criticism against her every week over things that really aren’t that — you know, against a man wouldn’t be brought up like that.
DICKERSON: But it would — but the inspector general — an inspector general’s report doesn’t have anything to do with gender, does it?
HICKENLOOPER: No, it certainly doesn’t, but it points out that, you know, previous secretaries of state had done roughly the same — had used — had used their own servers, like Colin Powell, and no one had come out officially at the time and said, you know, that this is a bad precedent. And, again, she’s admitted she made a mistake. I mean it’s — I don’t understand the — it’s not — it’s not like the end of the world. Again, I understand it’s been made a big deal because people have spent millions of dollars trying to throw it into this incredible flame. But look at — compare it to Donald Trump, where he changes what he says every single day. He never says he’s made a mistake, right? I mean who — whose judgment do you want to rely on?
DICKERSON: Colorado is a purple state. It’s going to be a big battleground in the — in the general election. What — what’s your sense of the role of the Hispanic population there, 20 percent in the state, the role it will play?
HICKENLOOPER: I think it will play a huge role. And, again, I think every day that goes by and Don Trump says something more that alienates large segments of the American people, I think that’s going to pay — he will pay a heavy price there.
DICKERSON: All right.
HICKENLOOPER: I mean —
DICKERSON: Hey, governor —
HICKENLOOPER: We knew he was kind of a — a blow hard —
DICKERSON: I’m sorry, governor.
HICKENLOOPER: That’s OK.
DICKERSON: We’re going to have to cut out you off there. Thanks so much for being with us. We’ll be right back.
DICKERSON: We’ll see you next week. But on this Memorial Day weekend, before we go, we want to thank our nation’s veterans who have served their country. We are very grateful.
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