Full Transcript: ABC News Iowa Republican Debate


DIANE SAWYER: Governor Perry, close this--


DIANE SAWYER: --please.

GOVERNOR RICK PERRY: --just say that I think this is a minor issue-- that the media is blowing-- way out of proportion. We have a president of the United States who has put the most muddled foreign policy in place that is causing the problems in the Middle East. Whether it goes back to two thousand and-- and-- nine when we had an opportunity to impact Iran, whether it has been the way that-- he stood back in Egypt and did not try to negotiate people who would come in that w-- could work with us, and now we have radical Islamists as the head of Egypt, whether it was leading from the rear, if you will, in-- in Libya.

The idea that this president now, with Iran getting one of our predator drones in their possession, and he had two opportunities-- well, he didn't have two opportunities, he had two choices-- actually, he had three. And he chose the worst.

And those two opportunities he had was to either retrieve that drone, or to destroy it, and he did the worst of the three and he did absolutely nothing. And the Russians and the Chinese will have our highly technical equipment now. This president is the problem, not something that Newt Gingrich said. (APPLAUSE)

DIANE SAWYER: We have to take a break right now, and I just want to say that we have a partner in all of this, which of course is Yahoo. I want to put up a question which we want to address when we come back about the struggles of the middle class in this country. And we have a question on Yahoo about the last time those of you had a personal financial strain that forced you to cut back on a necessity, as so many people in the middle class say they do. What were the consequences you fa-- you faced, and will you weigh in on that? And that's when we come back.



ANNOUNCER: Live from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, once again, Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos.

DIANE SAWYER: And we welcome all of you back and, again, we thank the Republican candidates for president of the United States for debating here tonight. I'm gonna return to the Yahoo question, which brings the struggles of the middle class down to something personal for everyone who is behind a podium up there.

And here's what it said: "Many of us are forced to make cuts to continue necessities such as mortgage payments, groceries, transportation to work, and health care." And then the question continues, they want to know, "When is the last time you had a personal financial strain that forced you, not only to give up a luxury, but also to cut back on necessity? And what were the consequences you faced?" This is from Andrew in Texas. And I'd like to start, Governor Perry, with you.

GOVERNOR RICK PERRY: Well, obviously-- growin' up where I grew up-- there were some people that probably said-- as a matter of fact, I was on-- radio station here, WHO-- yesterday and-- and talked about my upbringing. And-- growin' up in a house that didn't have-- running water until I was five or six years old and-- and my mother-- sewin' my own clothes for me till I went off to college.

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