Sen. Tester talks SCOTUS nominee, election and his new book, ‘Grounded’

Montana Sen. Jon Tester discusses appealing to rural voters: "Listen to them, you've got two ears and one mouth, act accordingly.”
7:01 | 09/26/20

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Transcript for Sen. Tester talks SCOTUS nominee, election and his new book, ‘Grounded’
Joining us now Montana senator Jon Tester he voted against both of president trump Supreme Court nominees yet won reelection in 2018 in the state and trump won by 21 points in 2016. He's out with a new book grounded as senators lessons from winning back rural America thanks so much for your time senator. Pleasure to Beirut thank you so we'll get to your book in just a moment but first want to start with the passing of RBG and and the fight to fill her seat ABC is out with a new poll today. This has 57% of Americans support waiting until after the election Republicans though seem intent on moving forward anyway arguing your democratic colleagues and trying slow up the process or focus on retaliation after the fact that the nominee does go to what's the game plan here. Well I think the biggest thing that Democrats and your announced talk about. The impact their replacements can have on every it is people's lives and how it's so important. The rejected time to do this right and that we let the American people. Say in this are the election. People party started quarreling and so. Well I would approach it looked initially and he has for people to come on are come on over from the Republican side because. The sense of fair play that didn't happen. Senator McConnell who whipped him in shape and now they're gonna trip. Sources certainly for the election when in fact it should be done after the new president sworn in. An after our congress has been sworn in I'll tell you those are the rules. But we had a democratic president and you can't be changed the rules because you have a Republican president vs Democrat doesn't. Thank you frivolously been resistance the idea of getting rid of the filibuster we talk with your colleagues senator mansion yesterday has opposed to getting rid of it. If Democrats win back his senate would you vote to abolish the filibuster if so would you support adding states are expanding the court. So final say if Democrats win the majority in the senate. Is it we're able to find. Folks are who all the work and compromise. And come up with good legislation. I think what we saw ordinary readers majority leader. Oftentimes. The Republicans just don't Waldman you can is that true. And that's unacceptable there's too many things in this country that need hoosiers. And we need to have actor congress to get that done. And so I'm I'm open to continue to tread a fine folks I'm most shall we work together to get mergers good legislation die. Now let's just say first second. That all Republicans do is Stonewall Stonewall normal I also didn't go to Washington DC it is set in my hands and get nothing done. So that's a case them were probably f.s take a look at the rules but I haven't hopes. That. Folks will work together like in the days of Mike Mansfield. And as you're well aware the president refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he does not win the election cast out without evidence of vote by mail fraud. This year it might take days or even weeks to know who won his mail in votes are counted are you worried of the trump administration might try and stop vote counting the fourteen incomplete. What better not and that's unacceptable it should be acceptable to everybody in his country Garland your coach let it regardless of your political persuasion. And what he said about transfer of power is unacceptable. And quite frankly hopefully hopefully we get the three. Coequal branches of government is to act like that and NB checks and bell long one another look at this this country is greatest country in the world. Because we have had of them peaceful transfer of power. And we cannot stand for someone whoever it is in this case president traveled to upset that because it would set us back. Significantly in this country. And that you were the Senate's only farmer in your book grounded you talk about the keys to appealing to rural voters saying. That effective leadership requires being open to everything it means making room for the voices that haven't been heard enough across our nation and in our world communities. Inside the mind of a rural vote voter who might have voted for Obama in 2012 it and switch to trump in 2016. That is now on the fence. How does Joseph Biden win this voter back. Well he's tallest German doctors are warm up act accordingly listen general. What they're gonna tellem has is that and our agriculture right now. Is on the brink of becoming nonexistent. And that he's the girls are gonna tell him there's some things we can do. Like break up the monopolies and in our food system. And in Vegas or capitalism works once again and amp broad system. They'll tell other things too like we've got to do some things. To make sure transfer transportation infrastructures which is up to stop them or got to make sure that public schools. Or are indeed the best they can't be looked. The bottom line is is it I think that if if Democrats show. And they listen. They're gonna find out that a lot of the issues that Democrats stand for are the very same issues are gonna hear them search in rural America. Got to show he got Arabia fanning you gotta listen and then we. I like that the two years and one man home. Now finally in Montana has elected only three Republican senators since World War I and hasn't elected a Republican governor since 2000 the current governor dot Democrat Steve Bullock. Is running to unseat senator Steve Danes in your book you reflected on your successful 2018 campaign saying that a victory would require a perfect campaign. As we enter in increasingly divisive political climate. What makes Montana a political oddity of sorts in this book need a perfect campaign in order to win. The that a state could trump likely will carry by a large margin in November. Well he has so far are Annenberg championed you continue to do that. I think what makes Montana different politically why people and the split tickets in Montana. Is that we've got Democrats and we've got Republicans. We've got independence and their all libertarians. And quite frankly when they go to the polls they like to vote for somebody who's gonna go to work for them. Not for the party. And they're gonna work to make this country great and quite frankly that's flight O'Donnell. Austin four years ago. That's what he's talking. And that's why aren't quite frankly Steve Bullock is gonna win this senate seat because he talks about things he's done. And things he's going to do to keep Montana the last best place and to keep this station in the greatest country in the world. And and I think that that will bear out in the election in November. Like I said I don't know that he asked Iran absolutely perfect race which can make many mistakes if you do it it'll take you out. And he's done a very hurt your job job so far. I think that we'll continue. Senator tester thank you so much for your time we appreciate you coming on the show. My pleasure thank you very much.

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

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