Full Transcript: ABC News Iowa Republican Debate


And-- the idea that-- luxury really wasn't in my lexicon. But as I grew and as I-- went off and flew in the United States Air Force and I came back home, and as a 27-year-old boy-- well, I was a m-- grown man by then-- but I didn't have anything-- I-- my social security-- has a zero in 1978. So I'm sure I was givin' up some things that other people would consider to be luxuries.

But the fact is-- I've never had a time in my life when I felt like that I gave anything up that I didn't have everything I needed. And-- I know there are people that are-- that are suffering in America today, and that's the reason we need to get this country back working and having people so that they can have a job. And the policies that I've laid out, and the record that I've had in the State of Texas for the last decade, clearly gives that record to the people of this country.

DIANE SAWYER: Again, we just want to remind you that, when the red comes up, you-- the rules that were agreed on here. I'll do the two governors; Governor Romney grew up in very different circumstances. What about this question?

GOVERNOR MITT ROMNEY: I didn't grow up poor. And if somebody is looking for someone who's grown up with that background, I'm-- I'm not the person. But I-- but I grew up with a dad who'd been poor, and my dad wanted to make sure I understood the lessons of hard work. And my mom and dad wanted to make sure that I understood the principles that made America the greatest nation on earth.

And so they made sure we had jobs as we were growing up. They made sure we didn't spend money foolishly. And they made sure that I had-- a care and concern for other people. I was able to serve my church overseas, and to-- to meet people there that had very difficult circumstances in their life. I also spent time in this country, serving as a pastor in my-- in my church, and again, having the occasion to work with people that were really struggling. I saw marriages under great stress.

You see, when-- when people lose jobs, marriages get strained, people's health gets affected-- people become depressed. And-- and I'm in this race, not-- not because I grew up without means, but because I understand what it takes to get America working again. And I love this country enormously and understand the principles and understand the specifics that it takes to get America creating jobs again. That's why I'm in the race.

DIANE SAWYER: And Congressman Paul, what does this question evoke? How much does it matter to have personal experience?

CONGRESSMAN RON PAUL: Well-- I feel very fortunate because-- although I was raised in-- in a system that-- in a family that was rather poor, but we-- (LAUGH) I didn't even know it. You know, it was durin' the Depression and World War II, and we didn't have very much, and I worked my way through college, and that was a natural instinct because that's what you were supposed to do. But-- I-- I-- I finally-- did a little bit better in medical school because I had my wife work our way through cool-- (LAUGH) medical school. (LAUGHTER) So that worked out a little bit better.

Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...