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CNBC "Squawk Box" - Transcript


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Cantor talks Health Care Reform and the President's Health Care Summit on CNBC's "Squawk Box"

Cantor On The Democrats' Inability To Pass Reform:

"The amazing thing though is the President and his party have extraordinary power in this town and it really is the beauty of American democracy that has stopped this bill from passing. They don't need Republican votes. They control both houses here and obviously have the White House, so something to me should strike this White House to say, enough, let's stop and really begin anew and try and address the quality issues and cost issues in a sustainable way.

On Cost:

"I think the American people rightfully have decided that it cannot accomplish the goals in a sustainable way, and that's the problem, it's not a workable bill. If you care about people's health care right now what we need to do is to focus on the cost issue so that we can have people continue to receive the health care they like. Not take it away from them and have Washington decide what's best for them.

On Democrats' Attempt To Get Health Care Through The House:

"Speaker Pelosi does not have the votes. You know, there's a lot of talk in this town about inevitability, that they're going to use the reconciliation process to jam this thing through the Senate at a 50 vote threshold. The problem is, they still need 218 votes in the House and they don't have them. ... I think if you look at the issues that are out there, they are down significantly. They could be down 15 to 20 votes.

On The Democrats' Ideological Agenda:

"Neither the President nor the Speaker want to give up on this attempt to really, really transform the health care we know in this country. And what I think is going on is people understand that things may sound good. I mean, recently the President came out and said, we're going to put in place a new regulator here in Washington to make sure there aren't excessive premium increases. You know, that's great. Nobody wants their premiums to go up. But you can't magically go and say, it's going to happen. I think the American people understand that, and they're very doubtful now that the results that are promised can be delivered. That's why we should start over."

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