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Special Report

Can Super Committee Reach Debt Deal?

This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," November 14, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: Every week, viewers vote for your choice online in our Friday Lightning round poll. This week, GOP tax proposal won with 36 percent of the votes. We're back with the panel. This deals with the effort in the Super Committee to come to some kind of -- try to come to some resolution before this deadline. Charles, it doesn't seem like it's being accepted. You've said the Democrats don't want it to be accepted. But what about the Republican efforts to try to move that direction?

KRAUTHAMMER: Senators Toomey and Portman have proposed what is essentially the core of a grand bargain, which is Republicans agree to a net increase in tax revenues while the Democrats agree to either a freeze or a cut in tax rates, and you make up the difference with cuts in loopholes. And that is what they are offering, which is courageous given that there are a lot of Republicans who will not accept any increase in revenues. And I think the Democrats are dismissing it and I think it's coming from on high with the administration, and the leadership on the Democratic side has no interest in a deal.

BAIER: Agree?

KIRSTEN POWERS, COLUMNIST, NEW YORK POST: Well, Harry Reid called the plan phony. So they're not taking it actually as real. And it's interesting because the Democrats feel that the Republicans really don't have any serious interest in doing any kind of tax reform because it would be such a success for President Obama and there is no reason to hand him something like that in an election year and that they don't believe that what is being put on the table is real.

They also won't agree to cutting the marginal tax rate as much as they want to cut it. I think down to 28 percent. There's just no way Democrats will go along with that. And I think a lot of Democrats also feel Republicans are thinking, we could win the White House back. Why are we going to do a tax deal now when we could have a Republican president and do exactly what we want?

BAIER: But where is give? Like the Republicans -- at least appear that they are coming to the table with some give.

HAYES: Yeah. The Democratic theory that Republicans don't want to deal might be persuasive if it didn't actually clash so hard with reality, because the Republicans have made this offer. So Republican have come forward in what I thought was actually not something that would be likely especially from Pat Toomey, who is the most conservative member of the Super Committee there.

I think, look, this is not an original insight. I don't think President Obama wants a deal. The president can't afford a deal. He spent the past six months talking about how Republicans are obstructionist and a do-nothing Congress. He can't afford to have a deal at this point.

BAIER: Solyndra documents out, Friday afternoon document dump again. We haven't found any bombshells in here, but the interesting point, Steve, is that the documents that deal with the adjustment of the loan, the changing of the loan, they are going to let congressmen see it, lawmakers see it, but they are not going to hand over those documents.

STEVE HAYES, SENIOR WRITER, THE WEEKLY STANDARD: Yeah why not? This was the most transparent administration in history and they are not providing these obviously interesting documents.

I do think we have had something of a bombshell though. I think Jay Carney having said that this, that George Kaiser, this Obama bundler who is an investor in Solyndra never discussed Solyndra in his White House meetings. It's just not true. We have an e-mail from George Kaiser that says at the time they were going to restructure it that he was talking to the White House about how to handle the loan. So clearly they contradicted themselves. I think we'll likely find a lot more contradictions.

BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: Kirsten?

POWERS: I just don't that that rises to the level, Jay Carney making a mistake, probably was given bad information, rises to the level of being a bombshell. Also because George Kaiser in the e-mails that were released, the sort of selective release that was done by the Republicans, told the lobbyists to back off. He said, ya know, this is going to actually make it more difficult for us to get approval, so pull back because if we pressure them too much.

So, ya know, I have yet to see something, other than some bungling -- there is no question that they have bungled this -- any proof or anything that would lead to us believe there was necessarily political influence on high pushing this through because of a donor.

BAIER: House GOP aide just typing in through Ed Henry's reporting, that this is a start, but clearly the White House has more in the system. And the committee wants to see all these documents.

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: And there is a reason the administration is withholding. If you look at the documents you discover that Solyndra was protesting how much of a going concern it was to outside investors and to the administration, and incidentally was supported by the Energy Department in the protest by emphasizing how much its sales were increasing, doubling every year, except that was losing $3 on every panel, which cost it $6 to make. That is exactly the kind of accounting that made the Soviet economy such a remarkable success. And yet Energy went along with this until the very, very end.

BAIER: Lightning, lightning round here, the last troubling topic, the Penn State story. What about this? Thoughts down the road?

KRAUTHAMMER: I think the reaction to the Paterno firing is an example of how celebrity has distorted our moral compass. It isn't about a coach. It isn't about the game. It's about the crimes. And the student protest and the gasps in the audience when the firing was announced is an example of a completely wrong moral focus.

POWERS: Yeah, I couldn't agree more. Where this idea that if you read the affidavit and get into even more detail than what we already know, it's just horrifying.

BAIER: Steve?

HAYES: The adults were looking out for program, the coaches for their friends, for everybody but the kids. Nobody was looking out for kids.

BAIER: That is it with the panel. But stay tuned as the nation honors its best and bravest.

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