Ask Everyone

8:45 a.m. E.T.

My colloquy with Senator-elect Tim Kaine from “Morning Joe”:

MARK HALPERIN: I want to move you from electoral politics to governance. The big issue for everybody is now going to be the Fiscal Cliff. Obviously, you can’t go into the full details but what would you like to see in a grand bargain? What are the big elements you think are required to get the kind of deal that everybody’s going to be asked to weigh in on?

TIM KAINE: Well, Mark, let me take it in two steps. First, let’s avoid the sequester cuts and the expiration of all the Bush tax cuts. I’ve had a plan on the table for about five months that just uses three simple elements that I think are all compromises. Let the Bush tax cuts expire over $500,000. That’s a compromise between the Democratic and Republican position and it produces about $500 billion over ten years. Fix Medicare so we can negotiate for prescription drug pricing and take tax subsidies away from the big five oil companies, who are incredibly profitable. If you do those three things, and you can see all of those as compromises, then you take the trillion dollars of potential cuts that could hurt defense and hurt the Virginia economy and you shrink it down to about $230 billion of targeted savings that you have to find over the next ten years. If we can do that deal that will create confidence and can springboard us into the bigger discussion and I think the bigger discussion has to be one where, kind of along the lines suggested by so many, we’ve got to have $2 or $3 of targeted cuts for every dollar of revenue. But we can’t fix the ballot sheet unless we fix both sides of the ballot sheet. So both parties are going to have to give.

Watch the video above.

Related Topics: Fiscal Cliff, Mark Halperin, Medicare, Morning Joe, MSNBC, sequestration, Tim Kaine, 2012 Elections, Budget, Democratic Party, Economy, Issues, News, The Page, Video

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