NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF "YOUR WORLD": Out of the blue, more green to cut, and, for a super committee, a super headache with which to deal.
I'm talking of course about the group of five Republican and five Democratic congressmen assigned with finding another $1.5 trillion or so in spending cuts by Thanksgiving. Now the president is talking about more like $2 trillion, while making sure that the money is there for that nearly half-trillion-dollar jobs plan of his.
Enter committee member and Pennsylvania Republican Senator Pat Toomey, who has to figure all this out.
Senator, that's a pretty big load of responsibility.
SEN. PAT TOOMEY, R-PA.: Yes, I thought we had a pretty tough job before the president made his announcement.
But, you know, I think we are going to focus on our work. And the president can float his plan. But, actually, he's having plenty of trouble on his own side of the aisle with his latest -- I don't know is this the fifth stimulus bill or whatever number it is?
CAVUTO: But he publicly announced in his remarks that this is going to be your bailiwick, in other words, you're -- the super committee's job. It was like sort of inviting someone publicly to a party when you haven't privately invited them.
TOOMEY: Yes. Yes.
CAVUTO: But what did you make of that?
TOOMEY: I was a little surprised that the president would think that he can launch another massive round of spending and then make it our problem to pay for it.
Frankly, when you're running big, huge deficits, when the mounting debt is part of the reason that we have such a weak economy, it was a bad idea for the president to come out and advocate another stimulus bill, which is what this really amounts to. So, he’s got some good elements in the plan, it’s true, at least in his speech, I should say. Most of them didn't make it into the plan he sent to Congress.
For instance, he said that we ought to have -- we ought to go easier on the regulatory front. We need to peel back a lot of the excessive regulation that his administration has forced on us. But that’s not in his bill. And he kind of tends to lecture Congress about the trade agreements. We can’t pass a trade agreement until he sends it to us. And he’s refused to send them us to. So, it’s all a little bit perplexing, Neil.
CAVUTO: So, Senator, finally, on this authority issue and who can do and say what, when the president says, I've got this roughly half- trillion-dollar jobs plan, I'm going to come up with $2 trillion in cuts over 10 years, not what we earlier agreed to, is that added responsibility on the committee?
In other words, you said that you're going to focus on your original charge, and that was to come up with this roughly $1.2 trillion to $1.5 trillion in additional cuts, and that's where you will stop. Is that right?
TOOMEY: Well, no. What I'm saying is I don’t feel obligated, because of the president's speech that we have to change what the committee’s going to do.
TOOMEY: We have no such obligation.
Now, we should look at elements of his plan. And the good elements, we ought to pursue, and the weaker elements, we ought to disregard, frankly.
TOOMEY: But the president can’t wave a wand and force us to do something that the legislation doesn’t contemplate.
CAVUTO: Well put.
All right, Senator, thank you. Very good seeing you again.
TOOMEY: Thanks for having me, Neil.
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