Interview with California Senate Candidate Carly Fiorina

Interview with California Senate Candidate Carly Fiorina

By On the Record - June 9, 2010

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Carly Fiorina is here. She is the winner of yesterday's Republican U.S. Senate primary in California. But there is no rest. Already, Fiorina is locked in the biggest political fight of her life with Democratic senator Barbara Boxer. Carly Fiorina joins us live. Good evening, Carly.

CARLY FIORINA, R-CALIF., SENATE CANDIDATE: Hi, Greta. How are you? Thanks for having me.

VAN SUSTEREN: Very well. And I see that you learned the first lesson about getting caught on a hot mic. And I listened to it, and as I listened, I thought, Uh-oh, Sean's going to be mad at you. And then I heard you say...


VAN SUSTEREN: You were talking about -- about Meg Whitman going on his show -- He's not an easy interview. What is it, you think -- you think Sean's a tough interview?

FIORINA: I do. And you know, I talked with Sean a little earlier this evening and I apologized because what I was trying to convey was that he is a tough interview. By the way, that's his job. It's his job to be a tough interview. And I'm going on his show on Friday night and really looking forward to it.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, well, he -- let's see how tough he is on you on Friday night. All right...

FIORINA: I'm sure he will be.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... now, the second thing...


VAN SUSTEREN: (INAUDIBLE) the second thing you said -- that you said is you're giving Senator Barbara Boxer a little problem (ph) for her hair. You know, it's -- what do you got -- what do you have to say about that one, having -- all of us have suffered from the old bad hair...

FIORINA: Oh, you know, I was -- I was quoting a friend of mine. My goodness, my hair's been talked about by a million people, you know? It sort of goes with the territory.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, OK...

FIORINA: Especially when you don't have any. As you remember, I started out with none.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, you may have to make a call to Senator Barbara Boxer, as well, but we'll see where that one goes. I don't know if she'll take your call. All right, now, to the -- to this campaign. This is -- this is going to be, I think, a knock-down, drag-out campaign. It is already tough. People that -- you -- the people who've come out against you basically say you were a rotten CEO of Hewlett-Packard. Were you a rotten CEO or not? Did you get rid of jobs? Did you ship them overseas? What's the story? What's your side of this?

FIORINA: Well, you know, I'm really proud of my record, and the good thing about business is the facts are clear. The numbers are clear. I managed HP through the worst technology recession in 25 years. And despite those tough times, we doubled the size of the business from $44 billion to $88 billion. We tripled the rate of innovation to 11 patents a day. We quintupled the cash flow. We improved the profitability in every product line. We created market-leading positions in every category in which we competed. And our stock out-performed the technology peer (ph) index by 23 percent.

Yes, we were in tough times, and some people, sadly, unfortunately, lost their jobs. But I know, like families and businesses know, that if you make the tough choices well, you emerge stronger. And so, in fact, net-net, we created jobs. I'm going to run on that record all day long, and I will stand it in sharp contrast to Barbara Boxer's record of rhetoric versus results.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, so then why'd you get pushed -- I mean, why did you leave or did you get pushed out or what happened? If had you those magnificent statistics, you know, why aren't you still CEO?

FIORINA: Oh, well, because, you know, guess what? Such a surprise! Politics exist in the boardroom, as well. Guess what? When you lead change, sometimes you get arrows in your back. I mean, that's just the way the real world is. But I am exceptionally proud of my time as CEO of HP for six years and exceptionally proud of the company today and all the employees who work there.

VAN SUSTEREN: How can you contribute to sort of elevating this debate with Senator Barbara Boxer? I mean, I -- you know, the -- you know, we all are sort of sitting back, wondering, essentially, whether or not you're going to, like, you know -- you know, scratch each other's eyes out. We've seen the ads that are rolling out you, against Senator Boxer, you know, and we can sort of watch it with some level of amusement. But the bottom line is, California is drowning. California's falling off the cliff...

FIORINA: Oh, my gosh.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... in many years (ph).

FIORINA: That's right.

VAN SUSTEREN: So how do you -- how do you -- how do you -- how do you and Barbara Boxer make a commitment to show the rest of us that, you know, maybe you can elevate this discussion?

FIORINA: Well, you know, I can't speak for Barbara Boxer, but I can speak for myself. And if you've watched the kind of campaign I've run so far in California, it's been about the issues. And the issues are these. California has a 12.6 percent unemployment rate. This is a state with 2- and-a-half million people out of work. And our employment situation has gotten worse since the stimulus package, not better. That's because we are destroying jobs in this state. We're not just living through tough times, we're destroying jobs through the government policies that Barbara Boxer supports. We're destroying jobs through too much government, too much taxation, too much regulation, too rich entitlements.

Barbara Boxer believes, she said today on television, that you create jobs by passing bills in the Senate. You don't create jobs by passing bills, you create jobs by cutting taxes. You create jobs by cutting regulation. You create jobs by freeing up small businesses, family-owned businesses, innovators and entrepreneurs to do what they do best, and that is create private sector jobs.

And what enrages Californians, the reason this must be a very important discussion about the future of our state and the direction of our nation, while we are dealing with this unbelievable unemployment, federal government employees are growing at 14.5 percent a year. And Barbara Boxer in her 28 years in Washington, D.C., has voted for over a trillion dollars of tax increases!

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, we got 15 seconds left. Are you going to debate Senator Barbara Boxer? And will it be soon?

FIORINA: Anytime, anywhere.

VAN SUSTEREN: Good! Can I moderate that debate?

FIORINA: Absolutely. I'll do it anytime, anywhere, and would love to do it with you, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. I was just teasing you! Anyway -- well, we'll be watching this because...

FIORINA: I'm not! I'm not teasing!


VAN SUSTEREN: All right, well, anyway, we'll all be watching. This is going to be a fascinating battle as these two very strong women vie for this very important job. Carly, thank you.

FIORINA: Thank you, Greta.


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