GOP Leader Eric Cantor talks with CNN about Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget and tax increases
Today on CNN’s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, House majority leader Eric Cantor spoke with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and Kate Bolduan about the President’s meetings on Capitol Hill and more. A highlight from the interview is after the jump; a full transcript will be posted on http://archives.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/sitroom.html. This interview will air today on The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer on CNN from 4 p.m. ET to 7 p.m. ET.
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Highlight from Full Interview:
THIS IS A RUSH FDCH TRANSCRIPT. IT MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BLITZER: Well, you weren’t in agreement at the end of December when you voted against that legislation to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff because it included a lot more tax revenue coming from rich people. He voted in favor of it. So it was a split — there was a split between the two of you then.
CANTOR: That is — that is correct. John Boehner and I, the speaker, we are in constant communications. Know where each other are. And certainly on that vote, there was a difference. But we’re a team and we’re working to try and achieve the best outcome for the people that put us here and elected us to try and balance the budget, to try and produce a growing economy. And again, Wolf, it’s going back to those working families in American who just don’t know why it has to be so hard now and they just want their life to work again and to get on about the business of living, of raising their children, of saving for college and providing for their future.
BOLDUAN: Let me ask you about the here and now. Paul Ryan just released his budget. Do you support it?
CANTOR: I do support Paul Ryan’s budget. It is a — it is a comprehensive plan to address the growing, unfunded liabilities of the entitlement programs at the federal level and so that we can save the safety net for those who need it and that we can bring the budget into balance and grow the economy. That’s the essence of what the plan is about.
BOLDUAN: But, Mr. Leader, in order to achieve that balance, to balance the budget, it also assumes that $600 billion in tax increases that you opposed in January.
CANTOR: Well, I mean, unfortunately, we have, in fact, after the last election, a situation where the status quo of the president there, the Democratic controlled Senate and the Republican House, that those tax increases were something that the president supported. But I can tell you, if you look at the alternative vision coming out of the Senate, there really is a two separate visions of the way this country ought to go. On the one hand, we have the House budget that is –promotes a balance within 10 years, that can grow our economy, and that you can get people back to work with more jobs. On the Senate side, what you have is a budget calling for a trillion dollars of additional tax increases and you have more borrowing, more spending and never a balance.
So the real question for the American people is, which side would they come down on? I believe that people feel a balanced budget is something that makes sense and is an imperative at home for them. It should be here in Washington as well because the tax dollars that are in Washington are nothing but the dollars earned by the hard-working taxpayers across the country.