Connie Mack on restoring America's greatness in 2015

Former congressman discusses the power of a Republican-led Congress


This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," December 18, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: So come January the Republicans will finally be in control of both the House and Senate. They have a lot of work to do. We've got to hold them accountable especially when it comes to the economy. And earlier I sat down with former congressman Connie Mack to talk about a plan that I love, which is the penny plan, and how the GOP led Congress can restore America's greatness. 


HANNITY: I have embraced your penny plan. I push it all the time.  To me it's a simple thing. It says, all right, government is growing, we have $18 trillion in debt. Obama when he was campaigning he says $9 trillion in debt, that's irresponsible. That's unpatriotic. Now he's almost accumulated as much debt as every other president before him combined. Why in this "CRomnibus" bill that took place, why didn't Boehner come out and say the penny plan, or something similar, cut government spending, balance the budget, stop robbing from our kids. Why can't they do? 

CONNIE MACK, R-FORMER CONGRESSMAN: You know, Sean, if I could answer that, I'd probably still be in the Congress. Look, I can't explain why Boehner doesn't do something like that. I can tell you there's a lot of people, a lot of members who have authorship, owner of their own plans.  But the penny plan is so simple, everybody gets it. It seems like everybody gets it except Congress. 

HANNITY: Cut one penny out of every dollar government spends for every year for five or six years you balance the budget. 

MACK: Done. Simple. 

HANNITY: It's not that hard. 

MACK: One percent. I used to take to the members 100 pennies, put them on the table, and I'd say all I'm asking for is one back. 

HANNITY: That's it.

MACK: That's it.        

HANNITY: But the problem with baseline budgeting, for those of you who don't understand this, built-in increases every year, massive increases.

MACK: Four to seven percent every year.

HANNITY: How do our kids pay back $18 trillion in debt, $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities? We're robbing them blind. 

MACK: The government solution is just to print more money. And that's unfortunate because what happens then is you get inflation. The cost of money goes up. People who we want to try to help to get an opportunity in the United States will actually be hurt because they won't be able to afford it. 

HANNITY: So what happens when interest in debt goes up? What happens when we're paying eight percent on the money that we now have borrowed and it goes up exponentially? 

MACK: Most of Americans will have a difficult time engaging in the American economy at that point. 

HANNITY: But aren't they now? There's 15 million Americans in poverty, 15 million on food stamps, lowest labor participation rate since the 70s, 92 million Americans not working. 

MACK: And it will get worse. 

HANNITY: So we're going broke.

MACK: We are broke. We've been broke a long time. And honestly it's been a little bit of both, right? It's been Republicans and Democrats. 

HANNITY: Agreed. That's why I'm disappointed in Boehner. Why would they fund Obamacare through the entire year? 

MACK: There is no way that you can with a straight face say what they passed was good legislation was a good thing to do. It's not good for the country. Now the argument is they did it for political reasons. You know, the American people are tired of that. They're not looking for a politician looking for political ways to get out of a tough spot. Let me just add this. They've had all year, they've had all last year, so this idea that now at the end because the holidays are coming that we've just have to get this, we have to get out of here. No. Get the job done.  Solve the problems.

HANNITY: Isn't it good politics to have a governing vision, energy independence, secure the border, balance the budget, health care savings account? It's that good politics? Doesn't that help you get reelected when you do good things and solve problems?

MACK: So that's what I tried to do in my career, and it worked. The reality is if you are tell people what you believe in and then you do it, they will support you even if they don't necessarily agree with the entire plan. What's happening now is you've got people, leaders and people in Congress saying one thing and then getting to Washington and doing something else.

HANNITY: I think it's a big mistake supporting that budget. Let me ask you. Can you tell me right now five things, big things, solutions that Republican Party is going to accomplish in the next Congress? 

MACK: I can't. I can't tell you that. 

HANNITY: I can't, either. I have five ideas. I would go with the penny plan, your plan. I would go with energy independence, hard, very hard. I would go with repeal and replace with health care savings accounts. I'd go with school choice. And I'd go with secure the border, five issues. 

MACK: Those would be winning issues. Most Americans would support that on both sides, Republicans and Democrats. Then it gets into this sausage making they talk about in Washington and nothing happens. 

HANNITY: You are sour on Washington in the sense that I sense you feel you can't get anything really good accomplished. 

MACK: You can't. It's a system right now that's set up for failure.  You've got people inside departments and agencies whose whole job it is to make sure that it always grows. That's how they keep their job.  Government is about government. And it's unfortunate because it should be and it was supposed for the people. 

HANNITY: All right, Connie Mack, good to see you my friend. 

MACK: Good to see you. HANNITY: By the way, I'm liking this new look.

MACK: Yes. Yes. 

HANNITY: You've got a little beard going on. 

MACK: A little personal freedom.


HANNITY: Because you're out of Congress, right??

MACK: That's right.

HANNITY: Thanks for being with us. 

MACK: Thank you very much. 


Content and Programming Copyright 2014 Fox News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2014 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.