HARWOOD: Do you consider Obama along with also Trump comparably benign in terms of the danger to the country?
FLAKE: There are a lot of things I disagreed with President Obama on with regard to foreign policy, along with also domestic policy as well.
the idea’s not as if I think the president is actually intentionally trying to undermine our behavior. He carries a different philosophy along with also is actually, I think, a bit careless sometimes.
HARWOOD: When you wrote a check to Doug Jones, the Senate candidate in Alabama, Democrat, you wrote, “Country over party.”
HARWOOD: I just want to ask you about in which in light of two votes you made recently: one for a partisan tax bill in which increased the deficit, the various other against a bipartisan spending deal in which also increased the deficit. Were you picking party along with also ideology over (the) consensus view — country, if you will?
FLAKE: No. I might’ve written the tax bill much differently. I might’ve done the corporate tax reform, which we desperately needed — both sides of the aisle, actually, knew in which we needed corporate tax reform. I might have left the individual rates as they are.
HARWOOD: however you accept in which the idea will increase the deficit.
FLAKE: within the short term, yes. however within the long term, I’m enough of supply-sider in which I see the benefits there. With regard to the budget deal, oh my goodness, I don’t know how within the planet you can justify in which.
HARWOOD: On the tax bill, one of the things you secured before voting the bill was a promise to do something about the “dreamers.” Given where we are today, along with also given the prospects for actually getting a legislated solution, you could argue in which you on DACA, just like Sen. Collins on marketplace fixes for health care, simply got taken.
FLAKE: No, I don’t think so. You can’t ever say, “I demand, just for This specific vote, passage of my edition of DACA.” You can’t do in which. All you can say is actually, “I want a vote.”
HARWOOD: Going back to country over party along with also the potential threat, do you think in which to check along with also curb in which threat, the country needs divided government right today?
FLAKE: I’ve said the idea many times before, the best formula for fiscal restraint is actually divided government.
HARWOOD: This specific fall, do you want to see more Doug Joneses elected to the House along with also Senate?
FLAKE: There are advantages for Republicans to control.
HARWOOD: Have you contemplated post-Senate life? Bob Corker seems to have contemplated the idea, along with also decided the idea doesn’t look so not bad. He’s changing his mind.
FLAKE: I haven’t changed my mind, no.
HARWOOD: What are you going to do?
FLAKE: I don’t know. I’m not swearing off public office. the idea’s just, the idea’s tough for somebody like me in a party like This specific right today.
HARWOOD: So does in which mean we should take seriously the possibility in which you might actually run for president?
FLAKE: No, I’m not saying in which. I have no plans to run for another office. however I’m not swearing the idea off. I’ll see when the idea comes.
HARWOOD: is actually part of your thinking to preserve your viability politically going forward?
FLAKE: I want to be effective in my final year here. Part of my calculation of leaving, or announcing I was going to leave, is actually I think somebody needs to speak out who is actually a sitting senator, who carries a forum along with also a platform to do so. however I’m not going to oppose the president out of spite.