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Leader Cantor: While The President Campaigns, House GOP Is Focused On Pro-Growth Policies


Location: Washington, DC

"Good morning, we Republicans believe in an America where success is rewarded and where innovation is encouraged. There has been a lot of talk lately about people paying their fair share. We like to talk about the need to allow Americans to regain the sense that they have a fair shot at making it in this world, and that confidence and optimism has been missing. The way we believe you do that is you focus on economic growth. We have a lot of pro-growth policies that we have been putting forward. There is one thing you don't do if you want to facilitate economic growth and job creation and that is raise taxes. The President, in putting forward his plan the other day, is proposing one of the largest tax increases in American history. That will not bring about economic growth in the private sector; all it will do is grow Washington.

"The President and those of us in Congress have big differences on some very big items. He does not embrace what we embrace as far as the big things that we believe are necessary to bring about growth. Real pro-growth tax reform, sensible regulatory policy like the TRAIN Act and others can give businesses, small and large, the confidence that they can invest again, create jobs and opportunity.

"Unfortunately, the President has made a decision that he is going to go into full campaign mode now, 14 months before the election, and that is his decision. What he is going to find when he goes traveling out to Republican districts across the country is that people don't want their taxes raised. And every time he goes to identify a bridge or another project that is yet not funded and is in disrepair, he is going to remind people that it was his stimulus that was unable to deliver the needed funds to address those projects.

"While the President is off doing that, we are focused very much on admitting there are big things that the election will have to resolve and that people will have to go to the polls and decide, but in the meantime we have over a year that we can work on the things that we have in common. We can do some things that will actually bring about economic growth and put people back to work and that is our intent."

Q & A:

"Many of us feel that some of the very loose monetary policy has had a negative effect as far as global confidence in our currency and ultimately in our economy. We're trying to maintain a sense of fiscal discipline in the policies and legislation that we're pressing, and we want to see the Administration join us in a strong dollar policy, sensible regulatory policy and a pro-growth tax posture."

"I cannot opine, nor would I if I were the Whip, as to the vote count on the [Continuing Resolution]. The real debate here is whether we're going to stick to the agreement of the debt ceiling which said we have the fixed number at the top, the $1.043 number. Are we going to start spending more? Are we going to allow, yet again, for another opportunity to take advantage of a crisis? We are not for that. We are for getting people the disaster relief they need and doing so in a responsible manner. That is why what you will see today is a CR that will pass the House floor and go over to the Senate. At this point, there is one of two outcomes; either you're going to spend more than what we planned in the debt ceiling agreement, or you're going to stick to the agreement. I think that the Members on our side of the aisle are very focused on practicing fiscal discipline, delivering the needs for the people in disaster-prone areas and doing so in a responsible way."

"There is a billion dollars of emergency aid in our CR, that's twice what the Administration requested and that money is offset. There is also the full budgeted amount, $2.65 billion for FY12 for the entire year, which the agencies will have access to over the course of the next month and a half. If you ask the agencies that is more money than they could actually push out the door, and we believe strongly that is enough money to address the disaster-prone areas and the victims of the latest disasters. So that is not the question. This is all about Harry Reid playing politics. If Harry Reid wants to play politics, he can go ahead. We're about doing the business of the people, we're about making sure that we are prudent shepherds of tax payer dollars in getting the disaster relief monies out. It is only Harry Reid that is talking about or threatening shut down, it's not us."

"The House will do its job and will pass the funding mechanism. Harry Reid, if he lives up to the agreement that was signed in August by the President, will do so as well. Then, we can continue to focus on getting people who need the aid the necessary funding, and begin to focus on this economy. Even though the President is out there campaigning, we want to do our work here so we can see people get back to work."

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