TODAY   |  October 14, 2013

Sen. Bob Corker: We’re getting on the ‘right page’

Republican Sen. Bob Corker tells TODAY’s Savannah Guthrie that he’s optimistic lawmakers will have an agreement by the end of the day Monday, saying the government needs to focus to make the country stronger.

Share This:

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

>> let's bring in senator corker from tennessee . good morning to you.

>> good morning, savannah.

>> are you willing to go out on a limb and say by thursday this congress will raise the debt ceiling increasing the nation's borrowing limit and warding off economic disaster?

>> well, savannah, you know, there's no question that house republicans for a long time overreached regarding the health care bill and for about, you know, 48 hours now, the democrats have overreached by wanting to spend more, unbelievably. but i do sense that people are getting back on the right page here and i do hope that by the end of the day we'll have an agreement that makes sense for our country.

>> are you confident of that? you have ceos worrying, world leaders meeting this weekend. worried about the impact, not just in this country but across the world financial markets . can you say, yes, congress will take us off this cliff?

>> savannah, this environment is different than any that i have seen around an arrangement like this. it's very difficult, i think, for any of us to say for sure this is going to happen. i was with finance ministers from around the world saturday night. typically i'm in tennessee but i was here this weekend. there's a lot of concern about whether we're going to meet this deadline. i think at the end of the day we will. but we have to move ahead with a senate agreement and then the house has got to be open to focussing on those things that make our country stronger which is spending restraints. hopefully -- everybody is getting, as i mentioned, on the right page, and that is focused on spending and reforms and the things that make our country stronger. i think that is beginning to be the case and hopefully we'll move ahead today, savannah.

>> you just mentioned that house republicans in your view overreached with this entire exercise. as you know, the polls have been devastating to republicans. do you think that the republican party deserves credit or blame, however you want to put it, for the shutdown and now the looming crisis with the debt ceiling?

>> well, that effort obviously was not one that bore fruit and i knew that from day one and i had been saying that. but the other side of the aisle seeing what they thought was weakness also moved to a place that was an overreach. so i think we're finally, savannah, in a place where the right conversation is occurring. i don't really focus on who gets blame. i was elected to try to solve problems and i think we're on the verge of possibly doing that today. so let's stay focused on that and move that behind us and let's set up an arrangement where in an orderly way we can focus on the reforms that we all know as a country we need to have in place to make our nation stronger.

>> we know people will be glad of that. senator corker of tennessee , good to have you with us. thank you.