Axios (2018) s04e18 Episode Script

Season 4, Episode 18

Morris County, NJ Governor Christie, thank you very much for having us into your home.
Thank you, Mike.
Chris Christie / the former governor of New Jersey WHAT IS THE FUTURE OF REPUBLICAN PARTY Governor, you're a straight shooter.
I think you know your views.
Presidential election 2020.
I'm gonna ask you a couple of yes-or-no questions.
Did Joe Biden steal the election in Pennsylvania? - No.
- Michigan? - In Arizona? - No.
Did Joe Biden steal the election in Georgia? No.
Is Joe Biden's win legal and indisputable? Yes.
Was January 6th an assault on the Capitol? Sure.
Could Donald Trump have done more to prevent or end it? Of course.
Do you think it's gonna turn out to be a signal event in American history? I'm less convinced of that.
I think it's an important moment, but I wouldn't analogize it to let's say to 9/11 or to Pearl Harbor.
And what makes you skeptical that it's as significant as sometimes portrayed or thought? I think the significance is different than some people do.
To me, the significance is it showed the resilience of our democracy.
'Cause after those people were attacked, members of Congress shepherded off to secret rooms to be protected, by 4:00 a.
that morning they were back on the floor certifying the presidential election.
That's a resilient democracy.
Were you surprised that President Trump turned on Vice President Pence? Like, when his life was in danger hung him out to dry? I think it was an awful act to a vice president who had been extraordinarily loyal and a guy who deserved much better.
- Have you talked to him? - Yes.
- You're in touch with him? - Yes, we're friends.
You and President Trump, "Donald" as you called him, were friends.
You'd known each other 20 years.
He used to call you in the car after you did a Sunday show.
He'd critique your performance, what he liked, what he didn't.
- Remember those calls? - Sure.
For the people who say they supported Trump, the line forms behind me.
I was the first one to go out there and support him.
And you remember, people thought I was nuts when I did that.
But I could tell he was gonna win the nomination.
Now, you and Donald Trump don't speak.
What happened? Well, he said the election was stolen and it wasn't.
And he stood in the East Room of the White House behind the seal of the president on election night and told the American people that the election had been stolen when he had no evidence to prove it.
Then January 6th happened as well.
I tried to call him that day and speak to him, to give him advice on what I thought he needed to be doing to stop the violence that was happening on Capitol Hill.
He didn't take the call, and we haven't spoken since.
How did you try to reach him on January 6th? Was the riot still going on? So I watched it for a little while, and I was really concerned.
And in fact, I called Kellyanne Conway first.
And I said to her, "Have you spoken to him?" And she said she had not.
And she said, "I think we both need to call him.
" And I said, "Absolutely.
" So I then called the president's secretary, Molly.
Couldn't get through.
I then called his body guy.
Didn't pick up.
I then called the president's cell phone and he didn't pick up.
I was desperate to try to get in touch with him because I felt like what was happening was awful and was going to be a stain on his presidency, and I wanted him to be the guy to stand up and stop it.
But he didn't take the call, so I said what I would have said to him privately on the air on ABC that day.
Our reporting shows, Governor, that Trump despises you, that he won't forgive you for crossing him for pointing out that he lost an election that he said he won.
It's demonstrably untrue that the election was stolen.
But that to me matters much less than what we do tomorrow.
And if we waste our time as Republicans talking about an election that we lost, we are going to lose future elections.
You said that the elections for Republicans need to be about the future, not the grievances of the past.
Donald Trump put out a statement saying you'd gotten absolutely massacred.
Well, look.
I've made the conscious decision, Mike, that I want to spend my time combating the policies of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris and trying to help Republicans win governorships, and the House, and the Senate in 2022.
This is not an argument that I'll walk away from.
And then he went for it.
He said, "Everybody remembers that Chris left New Jersey with a less than 9% approval rating.
" What do you make of him saying you had a less than 9% approval rating? Look I'm not gonna get into a back-and-forth with Donald Trump.
But what I will say is this.
When I ran for reelection in 2013, I got 60% of the vote.
When he ran for reelection, he lost to Joe Biden.
I'm happy to have that comparison stand up, that's the one that really matters.
I think those people who say that they will defer to Donald Trump have disqualified themselves from being president.
Because if you're not willing to stand up to someone, then how can you gonna be standing up for everyone when you're president? And so these are some other prospective Republican candidates in 2024 either have say they'd defer or clearly are? You find that disqualifying? I do because I think if you believe that you have the talent, the ability, the skills to be president of the United States, that you shouldn't defer to anyone if you believe you're the best person.
In the last days of the Trump administration, the New Yorker published a Q&A with you with the headline, "Chris Christie Has No Regrets.
" Really? I really don't.
Look, Mike You don't regret prepping Donald Trump for his debate in to run for reelection? I do not.
I do not.
The only regret I have about that is I caught COVID when I was doin' it.
You were in the ICU for seven days.
You have since said that people who've had it should tell others, like, what a random and what a lethal disease it is.
Look, I can just tell you my experience was feeling fine until I didn't.
And then my body ached like I've never felt in my life.
I had very, very high fevers, sweating, difficulty breathing and brutal headaches.
And I spent seven days in the intensive care unit by myself completely isolated.
The nurses only came And that was when we really didn't know much about COVID.
No, it was October of 2020.
And it was very scary.
- You thought you could die.
- I definitely felt I could die.
So if I won't get the shot, what would you say to me? I would say to you: Talk to people like me who have had it, talk to the family members of people who died from it, and talk to your doctor.
Your doctor.
You're preparing to run in '24.
And not only are you not waiting for Donald Trump.
I feel like you would relish taking him on.
Well, first of all, I haven't decided whether I'm gonna run for president or not.
Well, look, I think that you always want to give yourself options to make decisions.
Your successor as New Jersey governor, Phil Murphy, wound up in a squeaker for reelection.
Something like 68,000 votes out of 2.
5 million cast.
What happened? Well, he's not been a great governor and he ran a really lousy campaign.
He was continuing to look backwards and a lot of stuff on Donald Trump, and the voters didn't want to hear that.
You have a book coming soon, Republican Rescue.
I have a copy.
And the middle third is called "Crazy Talk.
" It's about all the conspiracies that Republicans have fallen for: birtherism, QAnon, Pizzagate.
Why has the party been so susceptible to such nonsense? It's a small portion of the party who's been susceptible to that.
But these things, especially because of social media today, spread like wildfire in a way that they never did in our politics before.
And my view as a prosecutor is the only way to combat that is with truth.
Governor, you say in the book that Republicans should marginalize and call out truth deniers and conspiracists.
But there's a problem.
A lot of those are Republicans.
You're asking them to marginalize themselves.
No, what I'm asking them to do is tell the truth.
If we are not the party of truth, we will not be trusted to govern.
Will President Biden be the Democratic nominee in 2024? Look.
Ultimately, he's gonna make that decision, but I doubt it.
I think that, someone who gets to be 82 years old, which is what he would be in 2024, this job is pretty taxing and pretty difficult.
I think he was always seen, even by his own party, as a transitional figure.
And what are you observing, thinking, hearing that bolsters that opinion? I just watch him do his job every day, Mike.
That's all.
And how could Republicans lose to President Biden in a reelection? We could lose by continuing to harp on our grievances of yesterday rather than talk about the hopes and dreams and aspirations of the country for tomorrow.
And if we do that, if we get caught in a yesterday world where we're trying to avenge past slights, real or perceived, then we're gonna be a party of yesterday.
Governor Christie, thank you for mixing it up with Axios on HBO.
Thanks, Mike.
NATO / Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg Brussels, Belgium The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), founded in 1949, is a military alliance that provides collective security for 30 member states.
Article 5 of its founding treaty states that an attack against one member is an attack against all.
NATO headquarters - Hello.
How are you? - Hello.
Good to see you.
- Thanks so much for having us.
- Good to have you in NATO.
Though NATO leaders promised Ukraine membership in 2008, Russia invaded Ukraine's Crimean province in 2014, and continues to occupy Ukrainian territory.
Ukraine has not been granted NATO membership.
Right now, Vladimir Putin is massing troops, large numbers of troops and military hardware, near Russia's border with Ukraine.
My sources in the U.
intelligence community tell me it could be almost as many as 100,000 Russian troops.
What do you think Putin has in store for Ukraine? So we are monitoring and watching very closely what is going on in and around Ukraine.
We have seen some unusual movements, concentration of forces.
And that's the reason why we are vigilant and why we monitor and of course are ready to address what may happen.
I was in Kyiv earlier this year to interview President Zelenskiy.
They badly want to join NATO.
If Russia invades Ukraine again, what would NATO do about it? So I met recently and just last week President Zelenskiy.
And I once again expressed NATO's support to Ukraine, our support to Ukraine's territorial integrity, sovereignty, and the fact You know that drives him crazy when you say that, right? I know that he wants something more, and I respect that he appreciates the support he gets from NATO allies.
But he also was very clear in our meeting that he wants something more.
He wants full membership.
He wants real, meaningful protection against Russia.
They were promised NATO membership back in 2008.
Nothing's happened.
They got invaded.
Their territory was seized.
It's still captured by Russia.
It's wrong to say that nothing has happened.
- On the membership front.
- Yeah.
They have not become members.
But, first of all, we have strengthened our partnership.
We are working much more closely with them.
- But you won't defend them obviously.
- Ukraine is not part of NATO.
I know.
No, I understand that.
And you won't let them be part.
Ukraine is not covered by our collective defense clause, our collective Article 5.
To be a NATO member, you need to meet the NATO standards.
We helped with modernizing, fighting corruption.
But 30 allies have to agree, and we don't have consensus agreement in NATO now on inviting Ukraine into becoming a full member.
I can think of current NATO members whose governments are deeply corrupt, undemocratic.
Isn't this just really about, you know, people don't want to fight with Putin, they don't want to provoke him? And it's a dangerous lesson because Putin must know that the way to stop a country joining NATO is to invade it.
Well, Putin and Russia has protested against every enlargement of NATO.
Russia and Putin expressed a lot of criticism against North Macedonia and Montenegro joining NATO, and they have joined NATO recently, over the last couple of years.
And those armies are more proficient than Ukraine's? We have the right to make our own assessments on whether a NATO country, an applicant country, an aspirant country meet the NATO standards.
Promoting democratic values is a cornerstone of NATO.
How does NATO define "democracy"? The rule of law and rule of liberty, free elections.
Is Turkey still a democratic government? They have elections.
The opposition was able to win an election in Istanbul recently.
But I think also it's fair to say that you know, I know that several allies have expressed concerns about Turkey.
Erdooan is interfering in the judiciary, locking up his enemies, jailing journalists, rerunning elections.
When allies have strongly different opinions about these issues, we meet, for instance, in this room and use the political, diplomatic leverage they have to raise these issues.
The U.
government is focused on China as a far bigger threat than Russia.
How do you think NATO would respond if China invades Taiwan? We are discussing and addressing global security situation, including the consequences of the rise of China, and more assertive behavior of China and the fact that they are threatening countries in the South China Sea, and that they are threatening Taiwan, and also They're getting into battle plans, I mean, would NATO lift a finger if China invades Taiwan? I understand that you ask those questions.
But if I started to answer all your hypothetical questions, I will only add to the tensions we see in that region.
For NATO to be effective, it needs to project competence.
Does it not? Absolutely.
Do you think that U.
/NATO performance in Afghanistan has undermined adversaries' perceptions of its competence? I think they see different things, but they also see an alliance which has been willing to be there for 20 years.
And for 20 years, we have been able to prevent terrorist attacks against any NATO ally organized or planned or conducted from Afghanistan.
That's a huge achievement.
And we are going to do whatever we can to preserve that achievement, but not by having thousands of troops on the ground.
Last month you said, "The surprise was not that the Taliban came back.
The surprise was that it happened so quickly.
" Why was NATO surprised by that? Because we didn't have good enough information to predict the rapid collapse of the leadership in Kabul.
We had very detailed intelligence on the number of troops, of how many Taliban soldiers, their capabilities.
But what was not anticipated was the collapse of the political leadership in Kabul that led to the fact the Taliban was able to take over the country on very short notice.
Why after 20 years training the Afghan security forces did we know so little about them? There are some serious lessons to be learned.
I have launched a lessons-learned process at NATO.
What worked is quite obvious, meaning that we were able to protect allies against any terrorist attack against NATO allies.
Then I think what you also saw was that gradually allies increased their level of ambition, aimed at creating a more stable democratic Afghanistan.
That proved extremely difficult.
At the same time, I think it's extremely important not to draw or to learn the wrong lessons.
We need to be prepared to use military force again in fighting terrorists, as we have done, for instance, in Iraq and Syria fighting ISIS.
You think the world's safer now than it was before the U.
withdrawal? The cost of staying was regarded as higher, as That's a separate question.
No, because the only thing we can make this discussion, these decisions is to compare costs and benefits.
You cannot have an isolated approach to security.
It has to be a political decision to make the assessment, to make the decision whether we are willing to pay the price, and that's why we have political leadership to make those decisions.
And all the politicians sitting in this room, they were all aware of the risks.
But they also knew that to stay entailed also significant risks of casualties, of increased violence, and most likely the need to not only maintain a kind of stability force but to increase the number of troops.
I'm wondering what you thought of the events of January 6th when protesters stormed the capital of NATO's biggest ally.
I regard that as an attack on the core democratic institutions of the United States and therefore also on core values of NATO.
And that's also the reason why we were going to see that shortly after there was a peaceful transition of power.
Do you have any concerns about America's future as a liberal democracy? - I'm confident that our biggest ally - - United States, will remain a strong democracy partly because United States, as other allies, has been through difficult times, crisis before and always come out on the other end with a strong commitment to democratic institutions.
Jobs in space / the galactic gig economy Arlington, VA - Hey Miriam.
- Hey.
How are you? - Good.
How are you? - Good.
It has been a really important year in space this year.
What we've seen this year has been sort of this incredible takeoff of the private space industry.
You have SpaceX launching its first all-civilian crew to space.
You had Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic both launching to suborbital space and actually launching their founders, Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos.
And private industry is we're on track to launch a record number of satellites to orbit this year.
And we know media companies are already trying to get licenses to go up into space to shoot reality shows.
It's just this massive amount of growth that's happening in the sector now.
There's been a lot of investment.
We've seen that really explode this year.
Private investment in space this year has been about $16 billion already.
Estimates like the one from Bank of America say this economy is growing to $1.
24 trillion in just the next ten years.
That's up from $400 billion in 2019.
So what does that all mean? It means more money, more jobs, and a booming economy for space.
It's just the beginning for these companies.
They all have really big long-term visions.
Elon Musk in particular has this vision of building a city on Mars.
Jeff Bezos has these dreams of building factories off of Earth, like space stations that will take polluting industry away from the planet.
You have asteroid mining.
You have all of these fantastical ideas about what our future in space could look like.
But before any of that happens, most of the jobs are gonna be on the ground.
There are hundreds of job listings at SpaceX right now and over a thousand at Blue Origin.
We should actually look through some of the SpaceX jobs 'cause they're fun.
Okay, so here are some of my favorites.
There's a radiation effects engineer, security officer, spaceport restaurant attendant, and a laser tracker tool maker.
Lasers? Got it.
You need a lotta lasers when you go to space, interestingly.
We know STEM education in math and in science is really important in terms of training the next generation of potential engineers.
Do we have that workforce right now? I think there's a real question about that.
I think that right now the workforce is there, but the question is whether it will be there in the future.
If you look at the state of STEM education in the U.
, we're very behind.
Based on one exam in 2018, U.
students were ranking 37th in math and 18 in science.
China ranks right at the top of both math and science in the world.
They're projected to have more STEM PhDs-twice as many of them-by 2025, which really gives them an advantage in terms of STEM talent.
And one of the big concerns in the U.
with the workforce that is staffing the space industry right now is that it's aging.
There's bipartisan support across the board from millennials and from boomers that says, you know, "We love space.
Like, this is what we should be doing.
" But Gen.
Z doesn't necessarily have that.
The people that would be filling those jobs in the future may not want them.
The U.
is undoubtedly the dominant force in space, but that's not guaranteed.
It's possible that we could lose our edge and maybe lose the perceived space race with China.
So what's at stake if we don't achieve these visions? Well, we get stuck on Earth.
Quantum leap? / an interview with IBM's CEO IBM Thomas J.
Watson Research Center YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY CEO Arvind Krishna has made quantum computing a major focus for IBM.
Based on quantum mechanics, these computers have the potential to be millions of times more powerful than today's supercomputers.
IBM Quantum System One - Hi Arvind.
- So good to see you.
So IBM, it's one of the most iconic names in technology.
Everyone knows the name.
But I'd venture to say many people don't know what IBM does and doesn't make today.
I think IBM is a company that uses technology t hat we both invent and deploy to solve really hard problems.
We are much more in the back office.
We are solving problems that are in the fabric of society.
We're not necessarily putting a gadget in the palm of your hand.
So we are not a consumer company.
That will require a different skill set completely.
I think we are much better at serving enterprises and governments.
That's what we do well.
And I think that's what we should continue doing well.
But there's also this sense that other companies are the ones really making the money in technology today.
Investors, who tend to be fairly sophisticated, also have rewarded companies like Facebook and Google and Apple with these outsized valuations.
Is IBM's business not as strong as some of those other companies? In the long run, it comes back to investors care about: "Is your revenue growing, and is your cash flow growing?" And for many years, we have not shown either of those.
So that's why we have turned into committing that we are going to grow and we are going to grow cash flow as well, not just revenue.
If you have both those things, I believe investors reward you.
You have some news you want to share with the world.
What is that? So in quantum computing, as you know, this has been one of those technologies some people think of it as science fiction.
I think of it now as a feat of engineering.
And there are these underlying things called "qubits"-or quantum bits that kind of denote what is the power of a quantum computer.
We are announcing a quantum computer with over a 100 qubits.
This is a first, something that you cannot simulate on any classical computer.
So that's really, really important.
So you got something that computationally is massive.
But basically the reason this breakthrough matters is it's the first time you have a computer that's quantum based that's more powerful than any traditional computer? Correct.
It is impossible to simulate it on something else, which implies it's more powerful than anything else.
Is this new computer the most powerful computer in the world right now? Can it solve every problem? No.
Can you do the work that this computer can do on any other computer? Absolutely not.
It would take a normal computer bigger than this planet to be able to do that.
But normal computers are incredibly powerful today.
Why are we even bothering with quantum computing? Well, think about our clients like Mitsubishi Chemical.
They're gonna use it to try to figure out materials without having to go do a wet lab experiment every time.
Or people like Daimler who are going to worry about electric batteries and maybe traffic optimization.
Or perhaps a bank who's worrying about what's the risk in their portfolio.
These are problems you are not able to solve on today's classical computers.
I don't view quantum computers as trying to replace classical computers.
They're trying to solve the problems classical computers cannot solve.
We will get more done in the next three or four years than we got done in the previous four decades all put together.
What are the kinds of problems that a quantum computer just by its nature is likely to be better at? So if I look at trying to give you my bank balance, a normal computer will beat a quantum computer every day on that problem forever because you don't really want a probable answer on that.
You want an exact answer.
On the other hand, if I want to figure out maybe what is the risk in a certain financial instrument, or if I want to figure out whether there is some fraud going on as people are doing transactions coming over a web, or if I want to figure out what is the next best alloy to make an airplane out of, quantum computers are gonna be great at solving those because normal computers struggle at those problems in real time.
Is quantum computing gonna make a difference in individual lives directly soon, or is it really the kind of thing that big industry is gonna use and that will have its own benefits eventually? I think it'll make a difference in everyone's life in a decade or less.
If I think about climate change, normal computers are not going to solve climate change.
If I think about reducing the amount of fertilizer used on the planet, quantum computers could do that.
If I think about sequestering carbon so that we can reduce the effect of carbon-based temperature change on the planet, I think quantum computers could do that.
Those are things we all care about.
Some people have said a lot of meaningful work in quantum computing is probably more like a decade away.
IBM has said, "No, it's coming sooner.
" Are you a little worried that maybe the hype is getting ahead of reality? Well let's look at our improvement.
I think that we know the roadmap and we know how to get there.
Some really hard problems to be solved for sure.
Anything that makes me say it's impossible? Not yet.
My mother taught me a lesson a long time ago.
She said, you know, "Christopher, be yourself.
Because then you never have to try to remember tomorrow who you pretended to be yesterday.
" I love that your mom calls you "Christopher.
" Look, if you named your kid "Chris Christie," you'd want to use "Christopher" as much as possible.

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