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JUDY WOODRUFF'S INSIDE POLITICS
World Reaction to Bush Inauguration Speech; Looking to '08
Aired January 21, 2005 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: Prayers for the president. Now that the inauguration is over, can George W. Bush accomplish his second term goals?
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world.
ANNOUNCER: The world according to Bush. How did his big speech play in other countries?
Political stars on parade. We'll look at the inauguration as a platform for White House hopefuls in 2008.
Now live from Washington, JUDY WOODRUFF'S INSIDE POLITICS.
WOODRUFF: Thank you for joining us on this first full day of President Bush's second term. Our overnight poll shows 43 percent of Americans are feeling more hopeful about the next four years after the inaugural festivities, 25 percent say they feel less hopeful. Another one-fourth say the event had no effect on their outlook. Faced with hard work ahead to carry out his agenda, the president began this day with prayer. Here now our senior White House correspondent John King.
JOHN KING, CNN SR. WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Hello to you, Judy. Ambitious goals both here at home and abroad, some would say even more so overseas. The president outlining in that inaugural address, as you noted, today Mr. Bush followed tradition. It has been tradition dating back to George Washington to have a prayer service the day after the inaugural. You see the president and the first lady here in Washington's majestic National Cathedral.
The vice president, Mrs. Cheney on hand, other dignitaries and cabinet members as well. The president quite pleased today, and you see him there, that the Reverend Billy Graham could participate. He is a spiritual adviser to this president in the past and this president's father, the former President Bush, as well. He was unable to attend four years ago because of an illness, on hand today to be among those delivering prayers at this national service.
Now no other public events for the president today as he prepares to get back to work though here in Washington and in key capitals around the world. Continuing discussion of just what the president meant yesterday when he said his overriding goal in the second term and now a key component of U.S. foreign and national security policy would be the promotion of democracy and liberty. Mr. Bush set the goal of ending tyranny around the world, at least making progress toward that in a second Bush term.
And the question now is how will he do that? What instruments of power of the United States government is he prepared to call to the table? And the questions being asked today is, will Mr. Bush go beyond lecturing say Iran and Syria? When he meets with President Putin of Russia next month will he threaten to isolate Russia or threaten any ramifications in U.S.-Russian relations if Mr. Putin, whom Mr. Bush has called a friend in the past, does not stop what the White House and the State Department view as reversal of the pro- democracy movement in Russia.
Similar questions with China as well, a country key to getting North Korea back to the table, and negotiations aimed at ending its nuclear weapons program. Will Mr. Bush be more vocal in his criticism of China's leaders and ask them to release dissidents, for example, and take steps toward -- early steps at least toward some democracy.
So Judy, Mr. Bush outlining this ambitious goal. The goal itself being embraced in all quarters, but many are asking, how do you follow it through? And Mr. Bush is well aware, aides at the White House here say, that he will be judged by this new test he has set, not only in his relations with Iran and Syria, but say Saudi Arabia, Egypt, China, Russia, Pakistan, and others as well -- Judy.
WOODRUFF: So John, they're not giving any preliminary answers to these questions that are being raised?
KING: They are beginning to outline, beginning this afternoon, just how Mr. Bush views this. And the one thing they tell us is he's not making a muscular pitch, if you will, threatening any military action, but he does have tools at his disposal. He has the rhetorical tools, the bully pulpit of the United States presidency. There also are trade relations with these countries that could be critically important. There are other ways to exercise U.S. power and influence.
This job, of course, Judy, first and foremost, will fall to the new secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice. And people here at the White House say they think she is a perfect spokeswoman, if you will, for this new cause to travel the world. Of course the president waiting for her to be confirmed. We expect that to happen middle of next week.
WOODRUFF: And presumably she's right on board with all the president's goals. All right, John, thank you very much.
WOODRUFF: In our new poll, nearly two-thirds of those who watched the president's inaugural address rated it as excellent or good, but most Americans appear to doubt that Mr. Bush can carry out some of his loftiest goals, 53 percent say they do not think the president can heal divisions in this country. And 60 percent say they do not think the U.S. can end tyranny in the world. Let's talk about the challenges ahead for Mr. Bush with David Gergen who has advised Presidents Clinton, Reagan, Nixon and the first President Bush.
David Gergen, you've had a full day and more to think about a little more about the president's speech. Was it the tone that he needed to set for the beginning of this term?
DAVID GERGEN, FMR. WHITE HOUSE ADVISER: I think it's a speech that surprised a great many people, Judy, especially in his emphasis upon an aggressive, ambitious foreign policy at the very moment when people in Washington were becoming preoccupied with his second-term domestic agenda.
Two elements to this that strike me 24 hours later, one is that there's now a wait and see attitude not only in this country but overseas about just what he did mean about foreign policy. And I think three schools are emerging in Europe and to some degree here. One is those who sort of say, well, he really wasn't serious about his rhetorical embrace of freedom all around the world. It was an idealistic expression, doesn't have many policy consequences. And therefore let's just welcome the conciliatory tone of the speech.
There's a second school that said, oh my God, he may really mean this and there are a lot of people, say, in France, in Lebanon and elsewhere, saying, if this is what he really means we're not sure we want freedom "ala American," as they call it. They're not sure they want us to bring our version of freedom to them.
And then there's a third school, which is the more cynical old school that you find in some parts of Europe saying, well, if he's really serious, it's going to mean some hard decisions for him, just as John King said, with regard to Pakistan and other countries.
A very interesting thought has appeared today in the International Herald Tribune by one of their major writers, Richard Bernstein, who argued, Judy, that Europe and the United States are increasingly going their own separate way with regard to China, and that the Bush position may chase the Europeans into the arms of the Chinese.
The Europeans have already signaled that they see the Chinese as strategic partners for the future, and America has been talking -- the Bush administration has talking about China as a strategic rival. And this, Richard Bernstein was saying, what we may see emerge in the next few years, if America really wants to push this liberty everywhere and the Europeans are saying let China alone, is you could see an alliance grow between Europe and China which is not at all I think what many people expected to come out of this speech.
WOODRUFF: Well, David, for those who say -- who give it, if you will, the best interpretation, that it was merely a statement of his idealistic goals, is that appropriate for an inaugural address? Does the president get a pass? Is he allowed to just spin out what his ideals are, whether or not he intends to put some flesh on those bones?
GERGEN: Well, there has been a great deal of idealism in past presidential inaugurals, John F. Kennedy, after all, remember, said, we would pay any price and bear any burden in the defense of freedom around the world, and that seemed at the time to be rhetorical, but we wound up with a fair number of troops in Vietnam before he left office and before he was assassinated. And, of course, there's always been the debate whether he would have not brought them home again or not. But there was that sense that America's -- coming out of the Kennedy speech, that we had this sort of boundless, limitless role to defend freedom everywhere.
Woodrow Wilson and his presidency, he was the most idealistic of presidents and there was a lot of Wilsonian idealism in the Bush speech yesterday. He's had this similar vision of extending democracy around the world, making the world safe for democracy. And of course he came badly acropper (ph) and that's what the cynics are saying, when idealism meets reality and there is that collision, reality usually wins.
So I think the president does get a -- to some extent will be applauded for his idealism, but there's another piece to this, Judy. There are lot of people who take the president at his word. After all, he is a plain-spoken man and his conservative supporters are rallying to this banner. They think, yes, this is exactly what we should be doing. This is the neoconservative vision of the future. And they're saying he's the true neocon.
So he's aroused, I think, a belief in his own -- among his own conservative followers that he indeed is serious about what he's saying and it will be hard for him to back off this kind of rhetoric in the future. They'll expect something to happen as a result of this.
WOODRUFF: But you also have some conservatives and I'm thinking specifically of Peggy Noonan, the former Reagan speechwriter, saying there was too much God in this speech.
WOODRUFF: What we have here is Earth. We're not heaven. We're not perfect. We're not going to be able to end tyranny.
GERGEN: Yes, wasn't -- that was such an interesting piece and yet there are others, the John Podoretzes of The New York Post today, for example, such a smashing speech. I talked to some other conservatives in Washington last night who were just applauding his speech because they thought, yes, this is the rallying cry we've needed. This has real echoes of what the president said at the American Enterprise Institute in that very important speech he gave before the Iraq war, that, indeed, he was committed to extending democracy through the Middle East.
And of course, that sets off alarm bells everywhere from Riyadh to Tehran to Damascus. And I think importantly, the vice president's comments yesterday to Don Imus that Iran is at the top of his concerns now and we will not use military power, but there's a good chance the Israelis might. And I think that sort of -- whoa, where did that come from?
WOODRUFF: Well, if the president wanted to stir up discussion, we know he's done that.
GERGEN: He's done that. Last thing, Judy, I might say, I think what he did do also, though, he left -- he lowered expectations about his domestic agenda and I think that has caused some concern on the domestic side because it didn't rally -- the speech had a ring about the international side. It was sort of mushy on the domestic.
WOODRUFF: David Gergen, it's always good to talk to you, we appreciate it.
GERGEN: Thank you, Judy.
WOODRUFF: Thank all of your efforts yesterday as well. We appreciate it.
GERGEN: Pleasure to be with you. Thank you.
WOODRUFF: President Bush's days of running for office may be over, but now he's campaigned for a place in history, you might say. Was his inaugural speech out of step with the views of U.S. allies? I'll speak with the ambassador of one ally, Germany, the German ambassador to the U.S.
Also ahead, the Bush inauguration prompts a new round of the 2008 speculation game.
Plus, the Howard Dean bandwagon. Who is hopping on board his bid to be DNC chair?
And later, a poignant "Political Play of the Week."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: We are led by events and common sense to one conclusion: The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WOODRUFF: President Bush used his inaugural speech to link security here in the U.S. to the advance of democracies abroad. In our new poll, we asked Americans if the spread of democracy is essential to U.S. security? 60 percent said yes, 35 percent said no. With me now to talk a little more about the president and his second- term foreign policy is the German ambassador to the United States, Wolfgang Ischinger.
Mr. Ambassador, thank you very much for coming.
WOFLGANG ISCHINGER, GERMAN AMB. TO U.S.: It's a pleasure to be here, Judy.
WOODRUFF: We appreciate it. How closely did your government pay attention to the president's address? ISCHINGER: Oh, I think all of Europe paid very close attention to this speech, and I think Europeans who tend to believe anyway that they ought to have a right to vote in American elections because America's actions affect us all in Europe, I think Europeans have tried to understand this speech. And I think one of the important things about this speech is that one has to read the whole speech and not only single sentences in order to understand what the key message is.
WOODRUFF: Well, let's talk about one important part of it. He did talk at length about spreading democracy around the world, his vision. Is that a vision that the German government shares, do you think?
ISCHINGER: Yes, of course, obviously. Look, Germany knows exactly what freedom is all about. We had our own freedom revolution in 1989. That's only 15 years ago. We are a country that enjoys freedom today and did not enjoy freedom a relatively short time ago. So Germans understand what freedom is all about.
I think some of the problem about how some Europeans interpret the speech or such a sentence is that they -- some of them, of course, believe that maybe America will pursue this objective by military means or by means other than diplomatic means. That is why I believe it's so important that the president of the United States has decided to come to Europe and take this message to Europe, explain it to Europeans, so that they don't need to worry about how America is going to go about implementing this wonderful objective.
And, in fact, he does have a trip planned next month to Europe. He's going to be meeting with your chancellor, Schroeder, at the end of February. I looked today at the German press, some of the German press. One German newspaper said the speech sends a chill down the spine. Another called it possibly the most grandiose speech ever. Is this -- you say your government is for the spread of democracy, but as the president describes it, is this something that you think the people of your country can embrace?
ISCHINGER: Well, first of all, my government has welcomed the speech and has expressed its support for this approach as we understand it. But I don't want to deny at all that there is a debate. Some people read only one sentence, others remember only our dispute about the Iraq war and are concerned about the use of military means, about war, maybe another war, so I think there is a problem of trust in the trans-Atlantic relationship which we need to work on.
And that is, I believe, the key mission or one of the key missions for President Bush as he travels to Europe to reinstill in this relationship a sense of trust. And I think this will be an important and successful trip.
WOODRUFF: Do you expect a change in U.S. foreign policy in the second term?
ISCHINGER: Well, I can only tell you as a practitioner, as an ambassador serving here in Washington, that I see an enormous degree of willingness by the re-elected administration to work with Europeans, to work with us, to have a constant flow of information back and forth. We're talking about the Arab-Israeli conflict.
I was at the White House earlier today for discussions about a whole range of issues concerning the president's agenda when he travels to Europe. We hope that we will even be able to talk about such complicated issues as Iran. So I can say that as far as the approach, the willingness to listen, to the willingness to consult is concerned, I see only very good signs.
All right. We appreciate hearing from you on this day after the president's inaugural. The ambassador of Germany, Wolfgang Ischinger, very good to see you. Thanks so much.
ISCHINGER: Thank you, Judy, thank you.
WOODRUFF: Well, the audience for yesterday's inauguration included a lot of people with their own eyes on the White House. A look at some of the contenders in attendance when we return.
Also, he has the name recognition and apparently the momentum. Is Howard Dean pulling away the race for Democratic Party Chairman?
WOODRUFF: All eyes were, of course, on President Bush during the inauguration, but even casual political observers couldn't help but notice the stage was packed with would-be presidential candidates. Our national correspondent Bruce Morton picked out some prominent faces in the crowd.
BUSH: So help me God.
BRUCE MORTON, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): We've just inaugurated a president, so are we already talking about his successor, the '08 nominee? Of course we are. This is Washington, politics never stops. And we all consult a mythical figure called the great mentioner who keeps a list of people being mentioned for the presidency.
Look, there's John McCain. He'll be over 70 next time, but that didn't stop Ronald Reagan. There's New York Governor George Pataki. He's on the list. And so is former New York mayor, Rudy Giuliani. He might want to move the capital back to New York though, he'd really miss those Yankee games if he had to live here.
There's Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel. There's first brother Jeb Bush taking pictures. He says he's not running, but they all say that this early in the cycle. And Newt Gingrich, he has a book out. That's something candidates do.
And there's Elizabeth Dole. She ran in 2000 and she's so close to the president she's probably memorized the oath. And Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, leaving after the speech. It's a Republican show, of course, but Democratic possibles are here too. John Kerry could go again. Senator Clinton's on all the lists. And she knows the house, of course. It's a chance to mix and mingle, maybe get on TV. That is not, by the way, the president's personal camera even though it's labeled "W".
So they're here, running? Of course not.
RUDY GIULIANI (R), FMR. NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: It is the beginning of his administration. I don't think we should start thinking about the next one until some time from now.
GOV. GEORGE PATAKI (R), NEW YORK: Right now I just want to hear the president give a great speech and do a tremendous job.
MORTON: That's what they all say, but don't kid yourself, the great mentioner is out there taking names.
Bruce Morton, CNN, Washington.
WOODRUFF: We begin our Friday "Political Bytes" with an update on the race for Democratic Party leader. The party hopefuls are heading to Sacramento for tomorrow's forum with state party officials from the West. After a similar forum next weekend in New York, the DNC will elect a new chairman on February 12th. Howard Dean this week picked up the support of the entire DNC delegation from Florida, along with the party chairs of five other states.
Former Congressman Martin Frost, meantime, was endorsed by veteran party leader Bob Strauss and by the House whip, Steny Hoyer.
Tim Roemer, the perceived moderate in the race, has won the backing two of abortion rights supporters, California Congresswomen Anna Eshoo and Ellen Tauscher.
Here in Washington, FCC Chairman Michael Powell has submitted his resignation and plans to leave the commission sometime in March. Powell, who is the son of outgoing Secretary of State Colin Powell, has used his tenure to reform media ownership rules and to push for tougher fines against obscenity.
Coming up, Democrats give Condoleezza Rice a grilling. Will their tough tactics pay off? We'll go live to Capitol Hill for the latest.
Plus, some powerful words from President Bush, but can he deliver on his inaugural speech? We'll get the take from the left and the right.
And, of course, it's Friday, which means it's time for the "Political Play of the Week." Our Bill Schneider will reveal the winner.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) WOODRUFF: It's just before 4:00 in the East and as the markets get set to close on Wall Street, I'm joined by Kitty Pilgrim in New York with "The Dobbs Report."
KITTY PILGRIM, GUEST HOST, "LOU DOBBS TONIGHT": Hi, Judy. Thanks. Well, blue chips stocks are modestly lower today and that's despite some strong earnings reports from General Electric and United Technologies. So let's take a look. We have the final trade still being counted and we have the Dow Jones industrials down 77 points. Nasdaq about half of 1 percent lower.
Let's put this in perspective for you. That's three weekly declines so far this year. That's not much of a track record for 2005.
Well, it's freezing. You may have noticed. And that is heating into supplies of heating oil and natural gas. The cold weather is gripping the Northeast and the Midwest and that did send oil prices sharply higher. And here's the numbers on that. Crude oil rose $1.22 today, two above $48 a barrel.
Some news on Walt Disney. Walt Disney CEO Michael Eisner is nearing his planned departure date in June and there's growing speculation that one of Disney's own may be tapped to fill his shoes. In "The New York Times," they cited sources close to the company's board. They say Disney president Bob Iger appears to be the leading candidate. Iger will be given center stage at Disney's annual meeting to tout his recent turnaround. This company is not interviewing outside candidates until that meeting's over, so insiders say that may give Iger an advantage. The board is expected to name a new chief by March or April.
Well, there is some free speech in it this country and a new book will generate a lot of controversy over that. A collection of al Qaeda writings has been translated into English. May be soon available at your local bookstore. The book is tentatively titled "al Qaeda Reader." It includes writings from the terrorist group's second in command, Ayman al Zawahiri. Also some material attributed to Osama bin laden from before the September 11th attacks. Now the books will be published by Doubleday and critics worry it could promote terrorism in the United States.
Well, in order to cut costs, nearly half of U.S. airlines are outsourcing aircraft maintenance. Experts say it's some of the most important maintenance work that's being sent overseas. Southwest Airlines has been doing it for years. Now some other airlines are doing it also. Northwest flies its jets to Singapore and Hong Kong for major maintenance and JetBlue sends its planes to El Salvador. Now here's the issue. FAA licensing standards are not as tight overseas as they are for regular maintenance work in the states.
We'll have more on this story on "LOU DOBBS TONIGHT" on CNN at 6:00 p.m. Eastern. Also tonight, gone are the days of workers spending their entire career at one company. We'll look at how many Americans now view their job security.
Plus, Republican senator Chuck Hagel says the need for changes in immigration policy is the most urgent problem facing the country. And former Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu joins us to talk about Mahmoud Abbas and the chances for jumpstarting the peace process. All of that tonight at 6:00 Eastern.
And now back to Judy Woodruff in Washington -- Judy.
JUDY WOODRUFF, CNN ANCHOR: Thanks, Kitty. We'll be watching. We appreciate it. INSIDE POLITICS continues right now.
SEN. BARBARA BOXER (D), CALIFORNIA: This is my personal view. That your loyalty to the mission you were given to sell this war overwhelmed your respect for the truth.
ANNOUNCER: Democrats play hardball with Condoleezza Rice, but will their delay of her confirmation backfire?
A lot of famous faces on a very crowded stage, but which one of these people made our political "Play of the Week"?
HOWARD DEAN, CANDIDATE FOR DNC CHAIR: I speak my mind and that is what I think Democrats have to do to win.
ANNOUNCER: Is Howard Dean the frontrunner in the race to lead the Democratic party?
Now, live from Washington, Judy Woodruff's INSIDE POLITICS.
WOODRUFF: Welcome back. Members of both political parties managed to keep up appearances during the Bush inauguration, mingling and breaking bread with one another. But in no time they were back in their separate corners, with Senate Democrats delaying a vote on Condoleezza Rice's nomination to be secretary of state. As our congressional correspondent Joe Johns reports, it's all part of the Democrats' strategy for President Bush's second term.
JOE JOHNS, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Despite the drubbing they took in the last election, there is plenty of fight left in congressional Democrats.
SEN. HARRY REID (D), MINORITY LEADER: We will work with the president. But I do say this, that we're not going to shy away from living up to the values and priorities that we believe are important in our country today.
JOHNS: Standing their ground early in the new Congress on issues that seem all but settled, some top Democrats on the Senate judiciary committee, including Senator Edward Kennedy, are pressing Alberto Gonzalez, the president's pick for attorney general, to answer more written questions about his views on the law because they see some of his answers to earlier questions as unsatisfactory and evasive.
Some other Democrats, including senators Barbara Boxer and Robert Bird, slowed down the confirmation vote of Condoleezza Rice for secretary of state because they wanted more time for debate. The administration is not happy.
ANDREW CARD, WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: ... that Dr. Rice will be a great secretary of state and she should move into that position quickly and I wish the Senate would confirm her, but, petty politics is playing a role in this and that's unfortunate.
JOHNS: Democrats also forced a debate on election reform by holding up the counting of Ohio's electoral vote, delaying the certification of President Bush's election for a couple of hours. So what's the point? With diminished power, Democrats say they'll use congressional procedures where they can to highlight Social Security and five other issues.
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), MINORITY LEADER: Health, education, jobs, clean environment, strong national defense with accountability in terms of spending.
JOHNS: But with battles over the judiciary ahead in the Senate and even a possible Supreme Court nomination, some Democrats say it's a risky strategy to complain too much.
WILL MARSHALL, DEMOCRATIC LEADERSHIP COUNCIL: You have to pick your fights carefully. Democrats shouldn't go after every single judge nomination and they don't.
JOHNS: Will Marshall argues the important thing is to also offer solutions.
MARSHALL: The key here is to understand that there's a false choice to say that we only need to oppose and we don't have to develop the alternatives that can begin to present a more attractive governing agenda for the Democrats looking forward.
JOHNS: Of course, congressional Republicans say they have no intention of allowing the Democrats' feistiness to get out of hand. For starters, Republicans say, they will mount a spirited defense of Condoleezza Rice next week, even though the vote on the Senate floor is simply not in doubt.
Judy, back to you.
WOODRUFF: And they have the ability to keep it from getting out of hand.
JOHNS: That's for sure.
WOODRUFF: All right, Joe, thank you very much. Majorities in both houses.
Well, Senator John Kerry is making it clear he'll be part of the Democrats' offensive. A day after his appearance at the Bush inauguration, Kerry is preparing to introduce legislation next week to make health care available to all children who don't have it. He would pay for it by a partial repeal of the Bush tax cut. And Kerry spokesman David Wade says within two weeks the senator will offer legislation to expand the military by 40,000 servicemen and women.
President Bush's swearing-in ceremony was one of the more dramatic moments of his inauguration, in part because of the presence of ailing Chief Justice William Rehnquist. But was Rehnquist's appearance a political play? Our Bill Schneider thinks so.
WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SR. POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The speculation was rampant. Would the chief justice make it onto the platform? Would his frail condition cause concern? A former Rehnquist clerk describes the chief justice as a fighter.
JAY JORGENSEN, FMR. REHNQUIST CLERK: He's not going to give in lightly to being sick. He's going to fight it hard and that's just -- his whole life, he's been that way.
SCHNEIDER: The chief justice didn't just make an appearance Thursday, he made a statement. Walking unaided to his seat, smiling, speaking in a weak, but clear voice.
WILLIAM REHNQUIST, SUPREME COURT CHIEF JUSTICE: Would you raise your right hand, Mr. President, and repeat after me?
SCHNEIDER: President Bush was moved.
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I want you to know how touched I was that Chief Justice came to administer the oath. That was an incredibly moving part of the ceremony.
SCHNEIDER: How do you know people find your appearance heartening? When even Jay Leno sees fit to comment on it.
JAY LENO, HOST, "THE TONIGHT SHOW": Did you see William Rehnquist when he arrived? He was hunched over, he's wearing a big black beret and he had that big oversized robe on. And when Clinton saw him from the back he said Monica?
SCHNEIDER: The chief justice reportedly wants to continue working through the end of the court's term in June. If so, Rehnquist's appearance was reassuring, most of all to President Bush. If Rehnquist had not shown up, or if his appearance had caused alarm, it would have set off a debate over his successor. John Dean, who went through some tough court confirmation fights in the Nixon White House, says both President Bush and the Senate seem prepared for a showdown.
JOHN DEAN, FMR. NIXON WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: The fact that he is renominating judges who've already been rejected indicates that he's in a scrappy mood and prepared to have a fight. The fact that there have been rumblings that the Senate is totally prepared to, as they say, go nuclear.
SCHNEIDER: President Bush doesn't need that fight right now. Not when he's about to unveil an ambitious agenda on Social Security, taxes and world affairs. Rehnquist's scrappy determination has bought the president some time and bought the chief justice the political "Play of the Week."
SCHNEIDER: Rehnquist is, of course, a staunch conservative, but you know, court watchers report he has brought a spirit of friendship and collegiality to the court. The justices still disagree, but without being disagreeable. You know, that's something both the legislative and the executive branch could learn from.
WOODRUFF: You are right about that. Maybe we in the media could even learn from it.
WOODRUFF: Bill Schneider. Thanks very much.
WOODRUFF: Well, the inauguration is over, but the reviews of the event and the president's speech still are coming. Up next, Donna Brazile and Bay Buchanan put their opinions on parade. Plus, is Condoleezza Rice still reeling from her Senate confirmation hearings? Bob Novak has the inside buzz ahead.
WOODRUFF: With me now former Gore campaign manager Donna Brazile and Bay Buchanan, president of American Cause. Donna, a good beginning for the president yesterday with this speech?
DONNA BRAZILE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, I thought the president evangelized to the world. What he talked about is what's been on his heart for these last four years. And that is he wants to be the president who spread the gospel of freedom throughout the world. I think it's difficult to plant the seeds of freedom in soil that's not ready for the ideal of freedom and liberty, but it was a good speech. It was visionary and -- but it was very short on details.
WOODRUFF: Too ambitious?
BAY BUCHANAN, PRESIDENT, AMERICAN CAUSE: Entirely too ambitious. His lofty speeches, great ideas. The message to young people was excellent, it was very optimistic. But Judy, when he -- in the first part of it, he said the goal of America is to rid the world of tyranny. Well, excuse me, but I don't -- I hope that we don't have specifics, Donna, when it comes to ridding the world of tyranny because that will be the end of us. I mean, we don't have the ability to rid -- we were an example to the world of what freedom to offer. We are certainly and never have been a nation whose goal is to rid the entire world of tyranny. We should not be.
BRAZILE: You're right, Bay, especially when some of those friends that he perhaps was talking about or alluding to was Pakistan, the president of Pakistan, the president of Egypt, the monarchy in Saudi Arabia and God knows, perhaps his best friend Mr. Putin of Russia. So I think it's very difficult to implement his vision, but as a vision statement of the country, it was very, huge.
WOODRUFF: But Bay, isn't this sort of giving full voice, if you will, to a big part of the neo-conservative view that it's America's role to spread democracy, to spread freedom and even in an aggressive way?
BUCHANAN: There's no question.
WOODRUFF: If America isn't going to do it, in other words, who will?
BUCHANAN: The neoconservatives, I'm sure had champagne out in full last night. But it's not good. I mean, I would have hoped that the president realized and he was obviously encouraged by the neoconservatives going to Iraq, that he realized this isn't the way -- it's not that simple. You just don't go in and free people. This doesn't happen. And that we have a real world challenge to get ourselves out, extricated, from Iraq in a way that gives them some opportunity over there. But for us to even consider to doing that in more than Iraq at this stage is completely foolhardy.
WOODRUFF: Donna, what about the religious piece of all this? There were a number of references to God. But, it was interesting that conservative commentary Peggy Noonan, who writes for "The Wall Street Journal," she was a speechwriter for Ronald Reagan, among others. She said, commenting on the speech -- she said, picking up on basepoint, "Tyranny is a bad thing, quite wicked, but nobody thinks we're going to eradicate it any time soon." And she went on to say this is heaven -- this isn't heaven, this is earth.
BRAZILE: It was deeply religious and I could hear the Second Chronicles. If my people were called by their name it would humble themselves. I could hear the New Testament. I mean, again, I think this is what George W. Bush believes. This comes from his heart. This is how he sees himself and his role in history. He used the inaugural address to evangelize his message to spread freedom. That's his calling.
However, I would use portions of the speech over the coming months to remind Republicans and conservatives that this president said those who carried a message of freedom must not carry with the baggage of bigotry. To remind them that they have a moral obligation here in this country, too, to fight for things that would give the American people more freedom and more liberty.
BUCHANAN: There's no question that the president, as Donna pointed out, he, in order to be successful, has to work with all kinds of governments around this world in order to have a relationship with them and that we can work through a lot of these problems. He can't be -- he can't preach to them about the kind of government they should have and then turn around and say let's work together.
BRAZILE: Especially when the credibility of this country, given our status in Iraq, has been called into question by many of our allies. I think it's very difficult for the president to carry forth this message until we get our own house in Iraq in order.
WOODRUFF: Let me quickly ask you about the Democrats. They are showing signs of being aggressive themselves. They challenged the electoral college certification to Congress and now they're slowing down, only by a few days, but they are slowing down, the confirmation of Condoleezza Rice to be secretary of state. Bay, are the Democrats -- I mean, is it smart of them to be sort of flexing their muscle or can it come back to bite them?
BUCHANAN: They are tone deaf, politically. These guys -- it's the most foolhardy thing I can imagine. It's given Republicans a great opportunity to show the nation that this is obstructionist. That these guys just want to stop things. Condi Rice is enormously qualified. She's a talented -- she would do us great to have her out front as secretary of state and that's what both sides think. That's what all Americans believe, I think. She has enormous support in this country and they're trying to hold her up?
BRAZILE: Well, the part of Bay's statement that I agree with is that she's very qualified for the position. She should be voted on right away. She had have been voted on yesterday because she will have the votes to win this position. She's qualified and they should put it through.
Now, on the large issue, yes, there are signs of life coming from the Democratic party and from the congressional leadership and you'll see this across the board. Not just on certain nominations, but also on legislation and also on the overall tone of the Congress. Democrats are not going to sit back and play dead. But on Condoleezza Rice, I firmly support her and I think that the Democrats in Congress, I mean the Senate, will overwhelmingly support her as well.
BUCHANAN: What kind of statement does it make when John Kerry, leader of your party, voted against Condi Rice for secretary of state? She is a role model for women, especially minority women, across the country and he votes no. That is just an outrage and shows how petty the party and its leaders are.
WOODRUFF: And that's what Andy Card called it, all petty politics. OK. We're going to leave it there.
BRAZILE: All right.
WOODRUFF: We get another chance at this next week.
BRAZILE: Next week, next week.
WOODRUFF: Bay, Donna, thank you very much.
Speaking of Condoleezza Rice, she is considered a shoo-in for secretary of state, but what did she think of her treatment on the Hill? Up next, our Bob Novak, he's got the inside scoop on Rice's reaction to her critics.
WOODRUFF: Bob Novak joins us now from the "CROSSFIRE" set at George Washington University with some inside buzz.
So Bob, reaction to yesterday's inauguration. What are you hearing?
BOB NOVAK, CO-HOST, "CROSSFIRE": Well, of course, the Republicans were very joyous about a re-elected president, but I did hear two complaints, Judy. The first was excessive security even after the president left an area, there was so much police around you, you just couldn't move last night, the night of the inauguration, or Wednesday night.
And secondly, there was a lot of complaints from social conservatives about the interview the president gave The Washington Post last Sunday where he kind of indicated that he was giving up the ship on this same -- anti-same-sex marriage amendment because they're behind. They're behind on Social Security, these conservatives say, and he hasn't given up that vote.
WOODRUFF: OK. Moving on. Condoleezza Rice, a little bit of trouble she was given by a couple of the Democratic members of the foreign -- Foreign Relations Committee. So what are you hearing was her reaction to that?
NOVAK: Judy, people who know her tell me that she's never been through a confirmation process before and she was really stunned by the reaction, particularly the tough treatment she got from Senator Barbara Boxer, the delay in her confirmation. And they wonder now, she wanted to cooperate with the Democrats, but what attitude -- how is that going to change her attitude as secretary of state?
Also the fact that John Kerry was the only other member of the committee to join Senator Boxer in voting against Condoleezza Rice. That's kind of an indication that he is running or thinking of running for president in 2008.
WOODRUFF: That's supposed to go -- the Rice nomination is supposed to go to the Senate floor on Wednesday. Bob, let's move over to the Democratic Party. The race for chair, what are you hearing?
NOVAK: One of the leading supporters of former Congressman Martin Frost for the DNC chairmanship tells me that he thinks it's hopeless. He thinks that Howard Dean is going to win this and they just can't catch up. In addition I talked to a big Democratic fund- raiser who told me there are at least 50 longtime major contributors who say they will not give a cent to the Democratic Party as long as Howard Dean is DNC chairman. And I called one veteran fund-raiser and contributor and he, who has contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars of his own, the party raised millions, he says he will bow out of party fund-raising as long as Dean is chairman. Now Dean is going to bring in the little contributors on the Internet but he is going to lose some of the big givers.
WOODRUFF: Again, that vote coming up on February the 12th. Finally, Bob, every spring there is this big conservative political action committee conference. So what are you hearing about what's going on there?
NOVAK: They call that CPAC and they invited only one Republican governor, Mitch Daniels, a new Republican governor of Indiana. You'll remember was the budget director of George W. Bush. They were stunned this week when Governor Daniels came out with a massive tax increase in Indiana on salaries over $100,000 to try to solve the budget shortfall and then came out with a billion dollar increase in spending. And they are just reeling at CPAC and the board members of the American Conservative Union, which sponsors the conference, are debating now among themselves whether they ought disinvite Governor Daniels and invite some other Republican governor.
WOODRUFF: So you mean they actually could disinvite him?
NOVAK: Absolutely. It's not written in stone and they are stunned not only that he came out for a big tax increase, but he was using the Democratic rhetoric about taxing the rich.
WOODRUFF: And that's a no-no.
NOVAK: It is, indeed.
WOODRUFF: All right. Bob Novak, we'll see you at 4:30 Eastern at the "CROSSFIRE" set.
NOVAK: Thank you.
WOODRUFF: And please -- we want to ask you to please join Bob this weekend for a look ahead at the president's second-term agenda. That's tomorrow morning at 9:30 Eastern on "The Novak Zone."
And still ahead here, one game, two cheering sections, for one political family it's a showdown at Heinz Field. INSIDE POLITICS continues in just a moment.
WOODRUFF: Sunday's AFC championship football game has divided at least one house in Boston. We are told that Senator John Kerry will watch the game with his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, even though the senator will be cheering for New England and his wife will be supporting her hometown Pittsburgh Steelers. When asked if the couple had made a good-natured bet on the game, the spokesman said quote, "some things in life are too serious to roll the dice. Football is a religion in their family." And we know it's a religion in a lot of families and a lot of folks are going to be watching. That's it for INSIDE POLITICS this Friday. Have a good weekend. I'm Judy Woodruff. Be sure to join our Dana Bash for INSIDE POLITICS SUNDAY at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. Among her guests, the new chairman of the Republican National Committee, Ken Mehlman. Have a great weekend, "CROSSFIRE" starts right now.
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