Majority Whip tells Al Hunt the President has to “get off the golf course.”
Courtesy BLOOMBERG TV’S ‘POLITICAL CAPITAL WITH AL HUNT’
McCarthy on President Obama’s role in the budget talks:
“It is never going to happen if the talks are still all going to be Biden. If this president is going to show leadership, it’s got to get beyond the Biden talks. It’s got to be President Obama showing leadership, engaging.”
“I think we can get to the point where we solve this problem. But if the president stays on the sideline – I mean, he’s got to get off the golf course and he’s got to get engaged…He has a responsibility as a leader.”
On whether he would oppose ending the oil depletion allowance for major oil companies in order to reduce the deficit:
“In America today, we use 19 million barrels a day, and we produce roughly 7 million. If you want to create a system that says we’re going to rely on more money being spent on oil in other countries that create jobs in other countries, I say no. Invest in American jobs.
“I would enhance the ability that we invest in American jobs and American energy…The sheer fact that you want to create a system that sends more money out of America and makes us more dependent on other countries, I say no.”
On the likelihood of a budget deal before August 2:
“In every big discussion, when you start seeing that there’s friction, it seems like things are coming to a close. The Biden talks were always going to come to an end. Now, they didn’t come totally to an end. The point that our leader, Eric Cantor, was making, the Democrats kept wanting to just spend more and have more taxes. You’ve got to get beyond that, you know?”
On Sen. Mitch McConnell saying there should be short-term debt ceiling increases:
“I don’t know how many short-terms you can go…I think it’s better to solve the problem long term. And how do you correct borrowing 40 cents out of every dollar if you keep going short-term? Correct it once and for all.”
On whether Republicans would agree to take Medicare off the table if Democrats take taxes off the table:
“When they ask about taxes, we ask, do they want to repeal Obamacare? They say they don’t want to go there. We say we don’t want to go on taxes. Why do you raise taxes in a down economy? How do you fundamentally change? I think there’s a lot of things we can talk about.”
“What Republicans are saying – they want to save Medicare. You look at every study that’s come out, this is going to go bankrupt. Look at our budget. If you’re 55 or older, there’s no change for you. If you ignore the problem, it’s going to go bankrupt.
On this week’s Bloomberg poll revealing that Americans feel they would be worse off under the House Republican Medicare Plan:
“No, no, no. The argument has just begun. It bothers me that you don’t understand the whole problem, because it’s going to go bankrupt. If the Democrat plan is to take this place bankrupt, we’re saying, no, we don’t want to do that. So if ours is not the best idea, put another idea on the table.
“What’s most surprising is most times people won’t even talk about the problem. If you ignore Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, in a few short years, it’ll take every single dollar that government brings in.”
On whether he could agree to a transactional fee on the major Wall Street banks who were rescued by the government three years ago – like what David Cameron did in the U.K.:
“If it’s going to pass a tax on to the middle class of America, yes, it is a bad idea. Because I believe in allowing the individual to invest and be able to grow.”
On whether he will propose a bill in the House to reverse President Obama’s move to release oil from the strategic reserve:
“We have brought four bills up in the House. And you know how many jobs that creates? Three hundred and fifty-four thousand. We just had a bill in committee, the Keystone Pipeline, that would create 1.3 million barrels a day. So not only would we add more reserves to America, where you would lower the price longer than 36 hours, we’d create American jobs.”
“Why is he using the reserves now, when the price was higher? Why wouldn’t we actually produce more? Because what happens when you become America independent, you don’t send your dollars overseas, and you create American jobs.”
On his greatest hope and greatest concern right now as Republicans seek to hold and add to the House majority in 2012:
“My greatest fear of what’s transpiring is that we continue down the exact same path in this country of continuing to spend more money.
“I want a strong leader as our nominee. I want a leader that sets out a path. I want one that doesn’t just talk about cuts, but talks about the shining city on the hill. We’re only going to get out of this problem if we grow this economy.”
“I will endorse if someone lays it out. I have not endorsed anybody yet. I haven’t seen it yet.”
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