TODAY   |  July 07, 2011

Rep. Cantor discusses budget debate

The debate over cutting the budget deficit and raising the federal debt ceiling continues in Washington. House Major Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., discusses whether progress has been made with NBC’s David Gregory.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> washington in the debate over raising the federal debt ceiling from keeping the united stat ondefaulting ots loans for the first time ever. president obama is summoning the two sides for a summit decision. you'll be there. good morning.

>> good morning, david .

>> there's new signs of openness. the president is talking about a larger package of spending cuts and medicare spending. you signaled to openness for raising revenues. do you think there's room for a deal here.

>> yesterday, david , i said it was in response to the president's demands that we not hold up a deal based on any objections to plugging corporate loopholes and he specifically talked about corporate jet owners. my response to him that's not why talks have stalled here in this town. why talks have stalled why i left the so-called biden talks had to do with the fact of a fundamental disagreement that we shouldn't raise taxes right now. you know and i know that it's counterintuitive in a sputtering economy to raise taxes when we need to get people back to work.

>> raising t rates is one thing. you're opposed to that. are you willing to consider raising revenues through closing loopholes and other deductions to bring money in to the federal treasury?

>> what i said first of all, preferences, special loopholes in the code are never good for overall growth. we do need to simplify the code. yes, i would like to see the rates brought down. in response to the isolated question of whether we're holding up something about corporate jet owners is not true. if that's such a priority for the president, what we would like to see is offsetting tax cuts somewhere else . at the end of the day , the republicans are not going to support --

>> leader, you want offsetting tax cuts . that doesn't get you anywhere.

>> the democrats have to cut spending, that's a cut. you'll do some kind of revenue increase as long as it's cut somewhere else , it doesn't get you anywhere, does it?

>> what this is about is we're trying to demonstrate the public we're going to stop spending we don't have. right now, we're borrowing 40% of every dollar we spend. no family, no business can get away with doing that. we're saying significant spending cuts to trillions of dollars to programs that affect llions ofpeople. these are not easy cuts. but the duty is to go back to the people who put us here and say we're going to change this system. we're going to get the fiscal house in order so people at home can get back to work.

>> oh here's the issue, if the white house , if the democrats are willing to cut the trillions of dollars what you wanted in spending cuts, what is the republican party prepared to do in this negotiation that is hard.

>> it is very hard, i think, to first of all sit here and say yes we're going to increase the credit limit of the country when we've got over $14 trillion in debt right now. but, i think all of us believe that america pays its bills just like every family business is expected to. so we look at this as a situation where we can come together and rally around transit dollars and spending cuts as well as reforms to the system, then we can go forward and begin to get the fiscal house in order. this is not easy for anyone to do, david . and i'm hopeful we can get this done so we can begin to grow the economy again.

>> all right, talk to the white house today. we'll be