Magazine | February 6, 2012, Issue

NSA Surveillance

Document Extract

Mobile Communication Project

Begin extract

01.15.12 GMT 13:47


Unidentified Male Voice: Hello?

Unidentified Male Voice 2: Yessir? Over.

Unidentified Male Voice: Is this Rick Perry?

Unidentified Male Voice 2: Yes it is, sir. To whom am I communicating? Over.

Unidentified Male Voice: Rick, it’s Mitt Romney.

Gov. Rick Perry: Hello, Mitt! Good to hear from you. How are things on your side of the trail? Over.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Um, okay. Hey, listen, this is a telephone. You know that, right? You don’t have to say “over” every time.

Gov. Rick Perry: Understood sir. Over.

Gov. Mitt Romney: No, it’s not a walkie-talkie, okay?

Gov. Rick Perry: I know that. I know that. Roger that.

Gov. Mitt Romney: So, Rick, what I was calling about was –

Gov. Rick Perry: Over.

Gov. Mitt Romney: You don’t have to –

Gov. Rick Perry: Copy that.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Okay, I’m just going to start and keep talking and hope that you can get this. Look, let’s look at the numbers. I’m a data guy. And I’m looking at the numbers from here on out, to Florida and Nevada and beyond, and Rick, let me say at the outset that you’ve been a heckuva candidate and you’ve run a really top-notch campaign, and I respect you enormously, but when you drill down here and get granular with the data, it really doesn’t look like there’s a model here for a Rick Perry victory. So what I’m asking, and it’s with huge respect, is that you consider dropping out and endorsing me.

Static. Dead air for :02.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Sorry. Over.

Gov. Rick Perry: Well sir, you’ve given me a lot to think about. Yessir, a lot to think about. And I want you to know that I respect the heck out of you, too, and really admire the fire and passion you’ve brought to this campaign. Over.

Gov. Mitt Romney: The fire and passion?

Gov. Rick Perry: Yessir, Mr. Speaker, it’s been a joy to see you work, I’ve got to tell you. Over.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Um, no, Rick, this isn’t Newt Gingrich, this is –

Gov. Rick Perry: And I’m going to think it all over, and pray about it, and tweet about it, and get back at you tomorrow latest. Is that okay? Over.

Gov. Mitt Romney: No, Rick, this isn’t Newt Ging –

Gov. Rick Perry: Perry out.

Static. Call over.

End extract

Begin extract

01.15.12 GMT 13:55



Unidentified Male Voice: Hello?

#page#Unidentified Male Voice 2: Your caller ID gave you away. That’s one of the features of 21st-century technology breakthroughs that I had a hand ushering into being. What can I do for you, Mitt? Please be brief, if you can, as I’m sitting for a portrait right now and the elephant I’m riding is getting restless.

Unidentified Male Voice: Well, first, thank you for making the time to speak to me, Mr. Speaker.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: You’re welcome. Good, Babar.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Excuse me?

Speaker Newt Gingrich: Not you. I was talking to the elephant. Please continue.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Look, Newt, you and I have gone at it pretty hard these past few weeks. And for my part, if I’ve crossed the line, I apologize. But let’s look at the numbers.

You’re a smart guy.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: This is true.

Gov. Mitt Romney: And I’m a smart guy.

Static. Dead air for :02.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Not smarter than you, of course, but I do have a certain facility with numbers. And we’re both looking at the same calculation. It just doesn’t look great for a Newt Gingrich nomination. And I want you to know that I respect you and welcome your thoughts and input here, and want you to be a major part of the future, but it’s hard for me to see how you are going to accomplish anything short of making this thing very expensive for both of us, and even in the end, I’m going to win. You can see that, right? You’re smarter than me, smarter than us all. This must have been obvious to you weeks ago. Due to your smarts.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: It occurred to me more than weeks ago, Mitt. I have flashes of clairvoyance. It’s a gift and a curse.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Right, right. It must be. It can’t be easy to be that visionary.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: I get such headaches. From my brain.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Dear Lord, I imagine you do. So why not let’s say that you’ll drop out of the race and endorse me? And then the headaches will stop. I promise.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: Hold on, Babar. Not you. But what would I do with myself?

Gov. Mitt Romney: Newt, do you know what the Romney campaign needs more than anything? We need a historian.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: I’m a historian!

Gov. Mitt Romney: I know! Coincidence, huh? But not just any historian, Newt. We need a very very very very very well-paid historian.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: I’m a very very very very well-paid historian!

Gov. Mitt Romney: You don’t say.

Speaker Newt Gingrich: You know, Mitt, I think the two of us should sit down and –

Elephant noise. Heavy footsteps. More elephant noise.

Gov. Mitt Romney: Newt? Newt?

Static. Call disconnected.

End extract

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