Political Notebook

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Daniels talks about book on CBS

Is Gov. Mitch Daniels trying to give Stephen King a run for his money?

In a story about Daniels for “CBS Sunday Morning,” correspondent Norah O’Donnell said she has read his new book, “Keeping the Republic.”

“I read this book, and I was scared,” O’Donnell said in a transcript from Sunday’s broadcast. “Is that what you meant to do, to scare people?”

“Yes,” Daniels said. “People ought to be scared. If we don’t make changes, we will ruin the American project. By that, I mean the dream that has attracted millions to these shores – that a person can start with nothing and rise to the top.”

He fears the national debt could lead to the fall of the nation.

“The heart of American society is the private sector,” he said. “Government should be there not to dominate it, to dictate to it, make all the decisions, but to do those things we have to do together to make private life flourish.”

“CBS Sunday Morning” covered ground familiar to Hoosiers, including Daniels’ consideration of a run at the GOP presidential nomination, only to be outvoted by his wife and their four daughters.

“Well, I think our family was really concerned about the lack of privacy,” his wife, Cheri Daniels, told O’Donnell. “And that it’s not just for four years or eight years, but for the rest of your life. Mitch has given 12 years to public service. And, you know, now it was our turn to get him back.”

“I said to somebody, ‘There’s one sentence for which a father has no reply, which is, ‘Daddy, please don’t,’.” the two-term governor said.

O’Donnell brought up their 1993 divorce and their remarriage in 1997, sandwiched around Cheri Daniels’ marriage to and divorce from another man, with O’Donnell stating, “They insist there are no dark secrets preventing him from running” for president.

Daniels did not reject a possible candidacy for vice president when pressed by O’Donnell.

“Oh, I don’t. … You don’t rule anything out, I suppose,” he said.

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