Following Cumulus’ and Congressman Mike Rogers’ announcement about his upcoming syndicated radio talker (early 2015) on Friday, Congressman Rogers appeared on Fox News Sunday and was asked about his upcoming radio gig.
Here’s the transcript:
Chris Wallace: “Finally, I want to talk to you about Mike Rogers, because that’s what you said, you had quite a surprise for Washington and I have to say, this town was shocked when you announced on Friday that you’re planning to step down at the end of the year, not seek reelection and to pursue a career on radio. I have a couple of questions. First of all, you seemed in effect to indicate in your announcement that you think, and you’re the chair of a very powerful committee, but that you can contribute as much as a radio talk show host. Do you really believe that sir?”
Mike Rogers: “Well, here’s the thing. So when I took the committee, it was not functioning very well, so I worked with my ranking member, a Democrat from Maryland, we agreed we’re going to take all of the politics out of it. And so, during the course of the last three and a half years and it will be four years at the end, as chairman, ten years on the committee, I think we’ve made really important strides to try to fix a lot of that…take the partisanship out of national security and fix some very hard technical problems, everything from cyber to space and everything in between, human collections. We’ve done that. I’ve helped do that, I’ve helped drive that agenda. You know, it was an interesting opportunity when you see the level of debate today, Chris, on national security issues and foreign policy, it worries me for the future of this country like nothing I’ve ever seen. So, when someone walked in and said “hey, we’re to give the opportunity to have a discussion in people’s cars, living rooms and kitchen, every single day from California to Iowa to New Hampshire to South Carolina, we think that you can change the needle on this debate” and I thought long and hard about it and I think they’re right…this is a great program, it’s a sophisticated program, that you have, but we need to broaden that audience to have discussion so that we can put America on solid footing as we move forward…in a very troubling world.”
Chris Wallace: “….I have to do the kind of thing that you’re going to do when you’re on this side of the microphone because I noticed when you were talking about the conversation, you talked about New Hampshire and Iowa, just as random states, and you know, Ronald Reagan back in 1980, I don’t have to tell you, used his platform as a radio commentator to run for president. So, is that a consideration for you, are you prepared at this point rule out any interest in 2016?”
Mike Rogers: “…Ronald Reagan used his platform on radio to run for President of the United States? I had no idea, Chris.”
Chris Wallace: “So what are you saying, I mean, that you’re thinking of that?
Mike Rogers: “No. Listen, I’m going to take it where it goes. This is a very unique opportunity that I will be able to talk about issues in ways that you don’t hear on a national radio platform today about the importance of national security, foreign policy, and all of the issues facing America. You know, to have that intimate conversation with listeners was very appealing to me, all across the United States. My goal here is to be as engaging as I can, to get listeners’ option and if I can move the needle on the debate, there’s a lot of celebrity politicians that are using issues candidly in Washington D.C. today that are detrimental to the national security of the United States and the politics in Washington has gotten as small as I’ve ever seen it…this is an opportunity to expand on that.”
Chris Wallace: “…I have to ask you because we’re overtime, when you celebrity politicians, you want to name one?”
Mike Rogers: “Oh I think your listeners are smart and savvy enough to make their own list.”
Chris Wallace: “…First of all, you’ve always been a great Congressman and a great guest, I think you’re going to be very successful as a talk show host. Congressman Rogers, thank you, it’s always good to talk with you sir, and I’m sure we’ll get the chance to do it again before you start your new career.”
Mike Rogers: “I hope so, thanks Chris.”