This is a rush transcript from "Your World With Neil Cavuto," February 17, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: First the signing, now the sell-off — the president's rush to stimulate failing to stimulate stocks today, at a new bear market low.
Welcome, everybody. I'm Neil Cavuto. And this is "Your World."
And if this massive $800 billion stimulus the president signed into law today was supposed to ease market angst about the economy today, the markets had a very funny way of showing it, hit hard on growing concerns this rush job might be more of a snow job, but hardly a partisan one. After all, Republicans started this spending rush with a financial rescue that did not rescue and bailouts that themselves needed bailing out.
So, is Wall Street now figuring out, enough with the rush? Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner says no.
Congressman, good to have you here.
REP. ANTHONY WEINER, D-N.Y.: Thank you for having me back.
CAVUTO: You know, we have something that, since we first kicked around the $700 billion financial rescue, we are down close to 4,000 points. That was since last September.
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CAVUTO: So, is it that, every time we try to rush, and sense of urgency, that people just are not buying it?
WEINER: Well, I do not know.
I mean, look, the stock market is an indication of what is going on in the economy. The economy is in a very rough spot right now. And I think, to some degree, the stock market might not be the best indicator. They're a short-term feedback.
But you have got to realize how deep this hole...
CAVUTO: Yes, but I'm going back to September.
WEINER: No, I think we have got to realize — and I think the president pointed this out at the bill-signing today — this is a deep hole that we are in. This is the worst problem we have had in three-quarters of a century.
And the question is how you take a short-term and long-term...
CAVUTO: Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait.
Worse than the '81-'82 recession?
WEINER: Yes. I...
CAVUTO: You and I are young enough to remember that.
WEINER: Yes. The answer is, I think so. And I think, frankly, most of the indicators are.
But whether it is the worst or the second worst, it is bad. And the question is, how do you start to dig out of that? And, to some degree, it's true. What we are trying to do is get money into the pockets of individual citizens, trying to get money into of building things that creates jobs.
It might not be the kind of thing that has perfect feedback from the stock market. But the most important thing is, does it get America back on a path to stability? And I think that it does.
CAVUTO: All right. But, again, you're right. One day does not a judgment make. But I would say, over many months, you can make some conclusions that when they look at this stuff — that is, folks in general — they start picking it apart and seeing all the problems.
And we had a rush, Congressman, with that financial rescue, remember? Sign here. Sign here. Paulson was, sign here. Sign here.
And then we had the stimulus: Get this done. Get this done. Get this done.
And now a lot of people who signed on to this, they didn't even read the damn thing. Now, I know it is over 1,000 pages. But maybe people are picking this apart and realizing, you know what? This — this — this dog don't hunt.
WEINER: Well, we certainly do have an environment where things are getting picked apart. And that is why I think what we need to do is frame it the way the president did.
Does it do the big things? Does it try to get tax relief for the middle class? Yes. Does it have money to do job creation?
CAVUTO: But how does $13 — $8 to $13 a weeks give you tax relief to the middle class?
WEINER: I don't know. I think a lot of people in my neighborhood like getting $800. I think that is — you see...
WEINER: You're the perfect example of...
CAVUTO: No, no, I am not saying from a rich or poor — I'm just saying, in the scheme of things, someone getting that much, regardless of how little they make, is it going to change their buying behavior?
WEINER: I think that, if the idea is to ease the tax burden on the middle class — and, frankly, that's something you advocate, easing the tax burden on the middle class — we are doing it.
We are creating an infrastructure plan that is like what Eisenhower did with the national highway system. You know, the problem is, we are in an environment now that it is very easy to find five or 10 people who think that any specific thing is the wrong thing to do.
But I think the American people like the basic framework: reduce taxes...