Robert Gibbs Reacts to Rick Santorum's RNC Speech

Former White House press secretary stops by the Republican Convention.
3:00 | 08/29/12

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Transcript for Robert Gibbs Reacts to Rick Santorum's RNC Speech
-- -- Thank you Pennsylvania. It is a great honor for me to be here tonight. With the love of my life wife Karen who've been here and my 93 year old mother. From Florida and and some of our children. My oldest son John wanted to be here tonight. But he's -- first year cadet. At the citadel. So I just wanna say to you done. Proud of this thank you. I -- -- first generation American. At the age of seven. My dad came from John to Johnstown Pennsylvania. From the mountains of northern Italy. On a ship's main Providence. How providential. That one day his son. Would announce for president. Just down the road. From the deep mines. Where his father my grandfather. Mine coal -- he was 72 years old. When my grandfather died. I remembered as a kid. Kneeling. At his task. And not being able to take my eyes. Off his -- Strong -- it's. Hands they've dug his path in life. And gave his family a chance. At living the American dream. Work in the mines may not have been the dream. He ever dream. And never dared ask. I think his answer would abandon. That America gave him more. Than he had ever -- America believed in him. That's why he believed in America. My grandfather like millions of other immigrants didn't come here for some government guarantee of income equality. Or government benefits to take care of his family in 1923 there were no government benefits for immigrants except one. Freed up. Under President Obama the dream of freedom. And opportunity has become a nightmare. Of dependency. With almost half of America. Receiving some sort of government assistance. It's no surprise fewer and fewer Americans. Are achieving their dreams. And more and more parents are concerned their children won't realize -- President Obama spent four years. And borrowed five trillion dollars. Trying to convince -- But he can make things better for you. To put your trust in him and the government to take care of every problem. The result. Massive debt and anemic growth and millions more on the report. The president's plan didn't work for America. Because that's not how -- -- works. In America. In America we believe in freedom and the responsibility. That comes with -- To work hard to make the dream of reaching our god given potential come true. We believe me. We believe it because it still works. Even today. Graduate from high school. Work hard and get married before you have children and the chance you won't ever be in poverty. It's just 2%. Yet if you don't do these three things. You're 38 times more likely. To end up in pop. We understand many Americans. Don't succeed because. And it should be guide Rick Santorum Robert giving us a little -- His personal story more than necessarily Mitt Romney's story. And he starts off from him. Personal story that sounds a lot like middle America. I think it is interesting -- that is speeds then goes quickly. -- speech that really only talks to people inside this hall. I don't think that's a speech quite frankly. -- -- undecided voter in Ohio and Virginia or Colorado. Lester Rick santorum's speech is living where you're living right now. And I think it's interesting. We're still spending for this convention -- -- an awful lot of time. Talking to voters. That if you believe them. They've got excited beyond belief and had them that way for a long time and I think the convention -- it's not exactly the case. Still Republicans do believe Robert that this election is a referendum. Not just on Barack Obama on government the size of government and the role of government and in our own poll that came out the other day. More people say -- it like smaller government with fewer services rather than larger government with more services. So is he wrong -- to go after governments say you know what most people his country they know that at the end of the day. They want to be able to have a government that works but not one that extends beyond its means -- Subtle and complicated he disagrees is that -- -- -- -- -- set up the way -- -- Because of some government programs people can't reach their dreams. At a because of the guaranteed Medicare and Social Security is is somebody who suffered go to college not able to make their -- I think that seems income -- it to people's lives. -- President Obama wants only the government not only government of the -- that we absolutely need. Nobody wants to do too much I remember. Eight years ago. In a famous speech that he gave in Boston's talking about -- will -- people wasting money on. On welfare that we don't need or the Pentagon unit -- -- a whole host of those strains. Again I just think it's this -- -- bass driven speech. It's just because the truth is there are a the buses independence in Ohio that understand. That is the government can help lower the interest rates for a child dead. Has the -- of the drives to go to college but can't afford it and their parents can't afford it. If that that if the government can grab that interest rates down. That's actually good thing that helps them get -- that's not a government dependency to prevents them from living their dreams. Robert arguing that we -- assigning bizarre -- guest -- -- -- your. You can either draw your home state. Where you can also draw a picture about what this election means to you. Or -- inside your name double take a photo view we're building. While you're doing because I -- but I don't -- like a lot to do it solicit questions. They're very still got a grant -- circuit. I do ask you upcoming in the program tonight is actually a former Democrats remember your party archer -- in the nominating Barack Obama. -- connection and about -- this -- here on behalf of Mitt Romney. And they think that that is an example. But if that -- without President Putin. Disenchanted. Tell -- your campaign working. You wealth of this to suggest people back wants but still it is -- different cancer and -- hostility is two different things. -- from Alabama I think a lot of assault Artur Davis is a rising star. In any political -- -- -- become disenchanted he lost of life. And now he's looking for a party where he thinks he could win -- works. This is. This -- marriage of some political convenience this is nothing to do with what he thinks and how he feels. Because I'm reminded win. A wrote a democratic congressman from northern Alabama switched parties. -- and I think 2008 and 2009. Artur Davis. Was the one of the Alabama delegation put out the strongest press release against people like this so. I head. -- it's great respect for for congressman Davis I think he's parties shopping to try to get his. John advances career quite -- Look at I think their people obviously. They wanted to seek greater chains and wanted to see faster change. That wanted to understand. That if we could do all -- it all of these things a little quick -- more quickly little quicker. And look -- I think one of the things that we've all had to understand is great -- takes awhile and it certainly takes a long time. When you're dealing with the type of economic calamities. That we've dealt with I think we have took us a -- -- get to that point where. We were losing 800000 jobs a month -- is gonna take us a long time to get back to that point. Where we replace all of them we've never been through that kind of economic disaster before and I think it's up to us as a campaign and as a political party. To continued challenge voters out there about about their hopes and dreams and bring them back to. That place. In 2008 that did gave them. A real and genuine sense of the best things in our country was still -- -- the that's with the presence of Robert Gibbs senior Obama advisor. Thank you -- to -- here -- we look forward to seeing -- in Charlotte. In just a few days. And it'll make him when he where in Charlotte will make him draw the map but North Carolina that's next.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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