Two Governors Not Looking for Bailouts

This is a rush transcript from "Your World With Neil Cavuto," December 2, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: To the next so-called dash for cash from states, president-elect Obama meeting with the nation's governors today, promising them that help is on the way.


PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA: We're going to need action and we're going to need action swiftly. That means passing an economic recovery plan that helps both Wall Street and Main Street. And this administration does not intend to delay in getting you the help that we need.


CAVUTO: Two Republican governors today saying, thanks, but no thanks, Rick Perry coming up in a minute.

First, the South Carolina governor, Mark Sanford.

Video: Watch Neil Cavuto's interview

Governor, you are just leery of this whole bailout trend. Explain.

GOV. MARK SANFORD, R-S.C.: Well, the — you know, the presupposition there is that economic security and, you know, a revival, in terms of the economic prospects of this country rests in whatever comes out of Washington.

And I think that nothing could be further from the truth. I think, at the end of the day, the biggest thing that has to do with what comes next with regard to economic stimulus is that kid in a basement working on the product of tomorrow.

And that goes to the heart of this bailout mentality that we are now facing as a country, because, if we go far enough down this road...

CAVUTO: Then, what do you think, Governor...

SANFORD: ... we — we move to a political...

CAVUTO: Right.

SANFORD: ... economy, rather than a market-based economy, where, if you have got the best lobbyists in Washington, whether you are a Big Three automaker company or somebody else, you can get some cash.

And I don't think that is a road we want to go down. So, I think that there...

CAVUTO: All right, but, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of California...

SANFORD: ... are a lot of us very, very concerned about the rest of the...


CAVUTO: I am sorry. We're tight for time, sir.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of California indicating he's looking at a $11.25 billion deficit, all but tipping his hand that he needs some money from Washington in his hand. What do you make of that?

SANFORD: Well, if you want to talk about, again, rewarding bad behavior with regard to economics, this is it.

I mean, California grew by 95 percent over the last 10 years, while even the federal government grew by 71 percent. So, the rate of growth of California government was far higher than even the federal government.

So, what are we going to do? We are going to tax people around the rest of the country to bail out California. Mind you, this is the same state that, just a couple of years ago, issued long-term bonds to continue to run its operations.

In other words, rather than dealing with reform or cutting back on spending, which is what a lot of other states have done, they continued to the spending train.

So, I think that there is, you know, a bit of distaste, if you want to call it that, from...

CAVUTO: All right.

SANFORD: ... other governors, other states that have tried to hold the line on spending.

CAVUTO: All right, Governor, thank you very much, sir. We appreciate it.


CAVUTO: Now we are hearing that governors that just met with Barack Obama could be looking for $100 billion for social aid. That is on top of all the infrastructure spending and jobs programs.

Reaction now from another governor saying "No thank you" to a handout.

On the phone now, Rick Perry, Republican governor of Texas.

Governor, good to have you back.


CAVUTO: You are saying...

PERRY: Good to be with you.

CAVUTO: You — my thanks, sir.

You're saying no to this. Why?

PERRY: Well, I think this is a rush to do something to help.

And I think that Mark Sanford and I laid it out pretty well in The Wall Street Journal today, when we — we talked about that, you know, I think American citizens are starting to become, you know, increasingly concerned, as Washington just continues to throw money at this problem.

We have heard now for almost six weeks that if, you know, the government will just step in and stimulate the economy, that that will take care of it. And I don't know how much we have poured down the rat hole now, but it is up to close to $7 trillion.

And, if this is any indication of a result, it is the wrong cure. We think that government needs to stand up and admit they have been spending too much money and they need to cut taxes. That's the way to give confidence to the market. That's the way to tell people that, listen, we realize that we spent too much money and that that is having as bad an impact on this market as anything that...


CAVUTO: But, Governor, you could argue it starts with your colleague, your former friend, the former governor of Texas, now the president of the United States, stepping down, President Bush, who — who started this financial rescue on the idea that, as bad as it was and anathema to you to do it, things would have been a heck of a lot worse had we not done it.

PERRY: Well, we don't know that.

CAVUTO: What do you think?

PERRY: We don't know that.

And the fact of the matter is that, regardless of — of who started it, it is time for us to stop and just bring some sanity to — look, Washington has gotten off track. I mean, there's — there is no doubt about that. The federal government is not only — you know, they are burying my children's future.

You know, it's — it's the next generation under this mountain of debt. They are taking our country in a very dangerous direction, to this bailout mentality and the idea that we need to look to government, rather than ourselves, for solutions. And that is the wrong message. I think it is the wrong way to do it.

The money that the federal government is using and proposing that we use for this bailout is borrowed money. You don't address debt by putting more debt as the — as the — as the cure. It is just — it is nonsense.

CAVUTO: All right.

PERRY: In Texas, we have focused on cutting taxes. We have reformed our legal system. We have maintained a reasonable regulatory climate. And our economy is reflective of that.


PERRY: Washington should take a page from that playbook.

CAVUTO: Governor Perry, thank you very much.

PERRY: Good to be with you, Neil.


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