Rep. Walsh: Stock Dives Show Private Sector Uncertain

Illinois congressman on drop in markets, economic fears, tax relief


NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF “YOUR WORLD”: Regardless, stocks diving, and the president and GOP lawmakers continue wrangling, not necessarily a good precipitation for investors or even for politicians.

And to hear Illinois Republican Congressman Joe Walsh tell it, the two sides are still very, very far apart.

Congressman, what do you make of the markets today? What do you think they’re telling you guys today?

REP. JOE WALSH, R-ILL.: I think, Neil, it’s a reaffirmation of the fact that, look, this is the president’s recovery. He didn’t -- he didn’t -- he inherited this recession, but this is his recovery.

And for two to three years now, the private sector in this country is scared to death and they’re uncertain with what is coming from Washington. You know, Republicans have done our best to try to stop and change what the president’s been doing. But it’s going to take a lot of work. It really is.

CAVUTO: Now, I know you were not at this Republican powwow at the White House today.


CAVUTO: But the read I’m hearing from those who were with the president was that he bemoaned the fact that top tax rates are too low, that he kept going back to this tax issue that was a nonstarter, I’m told, with the Republicans in that room.

But that indicates to me the two sides are extremely far apart.

WALSH: Well, and, again, I respect John Boehner as to what he said about the meeting.

To me, Neil, this meeting was just a show for him. It’s a show to -- it was a meeting to show that he’s doing something.


(CROSSTALK) CAVUTO: Who is doing something? Who is doing something?

WALSH: The president. The president, Neil.


WALSH: Why does he have to call all of the Republicans over to an hour-long meeting, where he spends most of the meeting, from what I have been told, talking?

If he were serious about doing something, he’d meet with eight to 10 Republicans quietly. None of us would know about it. They’d roll up their sleeves and they would get something done.

The other disheartening thing is what you said. I just don’t believe he has a clue, I don’t believe the president has a clue as to what makes the free market tick. And that’s being borne out right now. They have no confidence in his expansionist government policies. And that’s what’s killing the private economy.

CAVUTO: If, if, if the economy is slipping back into either something soft or, worse, another recession -- way too early to say -- what do you guys have planned?

WALSH: Oh, my gosh, you know what, Neil. Then again -- and understand, a lot of us feel like we came to Washington to rescue the private economy from this assault.

If this thing continues, I’ve got to believe that we can at least pull and tug him into more of a private sector solution, getting rid of regulations, Neil, actually cutting taxes, so that we can provide some -- some tax certainty so -- to businesses, so they can grow.

That’s what they’re so lacking right now. They’re scared to death about what might be coming down the pike any month.

CAVUTO: So, when the president and Democrats say things would be a lot worse now had we not done all the stimulus, done all the rescues, done everything we did, what do you say to that?

WALSH: Look, they said our unemployment rate would be below 8 percent a year ago.

Neil, this is his recovery. He came into office with the economy crashing, and he made a decision: I’m going to use Washington to stimulate this economy.

You and I know that’s a recipe for disaster. Instead of getting out of the way and easing the tax and regulatory burden on the private economy out there, so they could grow, he did the exact opposite. And now he is bearing the fruit of that. I only hope that we can convince him of the right way to go.

CAVUTO: All right, Congressman, we will watch closely. Good seeing you again.

WALSH: Thanks, Neil.

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