Sunday, December 2, 2012

Transcript: CNN's 'State of the Union' (12-2-12)

CANDY CROWLEY, HOST:  Let me ask you, the reaction to your going up on the Hill and saying, hey, this is basically the White House position, has been Mitch McConnell saying, I - I think it was just demeaning for them to ask the Treasury secretary to come up here and give a proposal like this.

And by this, we have people saying it's a sham, it's, uh, you know, ridiculous.  It's a non-starter.

When you went up there, you didn't think Republicans were going to go, good idea?

TIMOTHY GEITHNER, TREASURY SECRETARY:  You know, what we're trying to do is get these guys to come together, reach an agreement that's good for the country and good for the economy.

CROWLEY:  And by these guys, you mean you - you all...

GEITHNER:  The Republicans...

CROWLEY:  - and the Republicans.

GEITHNER:  - and Democrats together.

CROWLEY:  And the White House?

GEITHNER:  That's what we're trying to do.

And what we did is put forward a very comprehensive, very carefully designed mix of savings and tax rates to help us put us back on a path to stabilizing our debt, fixing our debt and living within our means.

We've been very detailed about how to do that, both from the spending side and the revenue side.  And we think this is a good plan for the country.  And it - and it does the most important thing, Candy, which is that it gives 98 percent of Americans the certainty they) their taxes aren't going to go up.  And it gives us the chance to make sure we're protecting Medicare for future generations and it gives us the ability to lock in a set of carefully designed reforms that put us back on a path to fiscal balance.

So it's a it's a very good plan and we think it's a good basis for these conversations.

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