This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," December 3, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Now, here's a competition, dueling summits! President Obama was not the only one to hold a jobs summit today. The president had some competition. House minority leader John Boehner had his own jobs summit. Congressman Boehner went "On the Record."
VAN SUSTEREN: Sir, nice to see you.
REP. JOHN BOEHNER, R - OHIO, MINORITY LEADER: Nice to see you.
VAN SUSTEREN: And of course, this is beautiful down here underneath the U.S. Capitol. I've never seen this before.
BOEHNER: Well, the Capitol visitors center has been open now for about a year, and -- and it has drawn record crowds of people. And it really is a beautiful facility, and I hope Americans come down and take a look at it.
VAN SUSTEREN: Speaking of drawing a crowd, you drew a little bit of a crowd today on your jobs summit. Why did you have a jobs summit?
BOEHNER: Well, there were things that were not going to be talked about at the white House today, and I wanted to give economists an opportunity to have that conversation. And it really revolves around the Obama-Pelosi job-killing agenda that's going on here in Washington.
You know, when -- when -- I used to be an employer. And I have hired people. I've had to write checks out of my pocket to bring people on board. And as an employer, when you look at the agenda that they're putting forward, they're raising so many doubts in the minds of employers that employers are scared to death to do -- to make any more investments in their business. When you've got these rising deficits, these -- these big spending bills, their national energy tax, and now health care, not to mention increased taxes rates, employers just don't know what's going to happen, so they're frozen. And the only way, really, to unfreeze them is to bring some certainty to what Washington is doing.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, so it's really sort of the uncertainty which is terribly troubling, terribly difficult for these small businesses. So if there's really no doubt about that, why do we need a jobs summit? Why did the White House need a jobs summit? Because, I mean, I think we sort of got it. I mean, we Americans know there's a 10.2 percent unemployment rate. We need certainty, whether it's raise taxes or lower taxes, or whatever, so that people can plan and get going.
BOEHNER: Well, they had a jobs summit because the Democrats all of a sudden figured out that the American people are very concerned about the fact that we do have 10.2 percent unemployment, that three million Americans have lost their jobs since the president signed the stimulus bill into law. It's not working, and they're getting real nervous. And so they had a photo op.
I don't see anything coming out of this unless the president and the Speaker of the House and the majority leader in the Senate say, All right, we're going to stop all of the nonsense, and work with us to do common- sense things that allows American families and small businesses to keep more of what they earn to get the economy going again.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, I know that you're the minority (INAUDIBLE) I hate to put you in an awkward position, tell me what the majority party is doing here in Congress, but here's what I don't get. We've had a stimulus bill, a lot of controversy around it, so now there's discussion of a job bill. How is...
BOEHNER: Another stimulus bill!
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, that's what I was going to...
BOEHNER: (INAUDIBLE) right.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, that's what I was going to ask you. Isn't the job bill just sort of another term for stimulus II? I mean...
BOEHNER: They're talking about a $300 billion stimulus bill...
VAN SUSTEREN: So it's a stimulus bill, it's not really a job bill.
BOEHNER: Well, but they can't cannot call it a stimulus bill because everybody knows the stimulus bill isn't working. And so they want to call it something else as if people aren't going to figure out that it's another $300 billion worth of wasteful Washington spending. And they want -- now they want to use the TARP money, the money that was passed over a year ago to help the financial institutions avert a crisis -- they're paying that money back now, and they want to take $300 billion of the money being paid back and waste it on all -- on growing government again. It will do nothing about helping the economy.
VAN SUSTEREN: Are they at all -- when you see them in the hall (INAUDIBLE) seem a little bit worried because you know, these -- these numbers are getting high. Even if you supported it in the beginning, you've got to see that -- you know, the deficit, the debt. You've got to see money going out and you see the unemployment rate not going down but rising up. I mean, do the Democrats sort of -- they cozy up to you in the hall and say, you know, Maybe we better put the brakes on some of this?
BOEHNER: You know, a lot of their moderate members get it because they go home and they're hearing from their employers and their friends. You know, they're asking them, What in the world are you doing up there?
but you have to remember that the majority of the Democrats in the House and the Senate come from very liberal districts, and they are liberal and they really do believe that government's the answer to everything. And so they're going to continue to march down this path that, unfortunately, won't help create jobs in our country.
VAN SUSTEREN: Is the minority party, the Republicans -- are you on defense or can you be on offense on things like job growth and getting jobs?
BOEHNER: We've been on offense about jobs and getting our economy going since early this year. The president...
VAN SUSTEREN: How, though? How, though? Because the numbers are going...
BOEHNER: Now, listen...
VAN SUSTEREN: The numbers are going up!
BOEHNER: The president asked us for our ideas and we laid them on the table back in January. We sent him a letter in September and early October outlining more ideas about how to get our economy going again. But you can't get the economy going until people start spending money and small businesses start hiring.
And the only way that's going to happen is if we allow American families to keep more of what they earn. Why not take the 10 percent rate and drop it to 5 percent? Why not take the 15 percent rate and drop it to 10 percent? Those two things right there will put money back in the hands of the American people today. We could do something about payroll taxes. We could have a payroll tax holiday.
VAN SUSTEREN: We could throw a switch at the IRS, essentially, for that one.
BOEHNER: Exactly. And it would happen overnight that people would have more money in their paychecks. What are they going to do with it? They're going to either save it or they're going to spend it, both of which are good for our economy.
VAN SUSTEREN: And of course, the problem, too, for people with jobs is that people who are -- who might locate a job in another community can't sell his home to move to a new community and get the job. I mean, so it is enormously complicated, and I guess that's why, as a taxpayer, when I see sort of, you know, jobs summits, I think, How about jobs instead of the summits?
BOEHNER: Here's the problem. You have the President of the United States, you got Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid, none of which has ever created a job, much less ever had a job in the real world. And so they don't really understand how the private sector works and how the real economy works. And all their faith is in more government. But I think as we've seen all year, more government isn't the answer the American people are looking for. And it's not working.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you, sir.
BOEHNER: Thank you.
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