Man, I get sick to death of so-called "journalists" letting these Republicans come on the air and repeat unchallenged the lie that the expiration of the Bush tax cuts will affect a great deal of small businesses.
Worse, they repeat endlessly an even bigger lie: that those tax cuts are going to create jobs. If they were going to create jobs, why did we have the worst record on job creation already under Bush? Wolf Blitzer, do your job, dammit.
Republican "Young Guns" Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy get asked some questions that might be half-way hard hitting if there was any follow up after they answered them, but of course we got zero from Blitzer. Pitiful, but typical, and tiresome. If these fools knew how to the the "economy back on track" it would have been on track when Bush left office.
CNN... the network where we pretend to be unbiased reporters and do almost zero reporting other than fake balance he said/she said bullpucky and chase ambulances. Every once in a while you get some decent stuff from this network, but not too often.
BLITZER: President Obama's returning today to one of his favorite lines of attack against Republicans. We heard him just a short while ago in the Rose Garden over at the White House accusing the GOP of holding middle-class tax cuts hostage because they want to extend Bush-era tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans.
And joining us now from Capitol Hill, two members of Congress. Eric Cantor, he's the number two Republican in the House of Representatives, and Kevin McCarthy, he's a Republican of California. They are two of the three authors of a brand new book entitled "Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders." The third author, Paul Ryan, unfortunately, couldn't be with us. We'll talk to him on another occasion.
Congressmen, thanks very much for coming in. Congressman Cantor, I want to start with you. In the end, if it comes down to getting the tax rates continued, the current tax rates for the middle class, for about 97 or 98 percent of the American people, those earning less than $250,000 a year, and not able to continue to the tax rates for the richer Americans, will you, like John Boehner, go along with that proposal?
CANTOR: Wolf, the situation here in Washington in the U.S. House is this. We have a bipartisan majority in support of the position that says we ought not be raising taxes on anybody, especially in a recession.
I mean, we need jobs right now. We know that over two-thirds of the jobs come from small businesses. The problem with allowing taxes to go up right now is you're going to tax the very people that were expecting to put their money to work to create jobs.
The House Democrats, Wolf, have continued to say that they're going to look to the Senate to go first on this bill. We know as well, yesterday, senators Lieberman and Webb joined Senator Conrad, senators Bayh and Nelson, saying, we don't think we ought to raise taxes on anybody.
They joined the president's former budget director, Peter Orszag, saying, now is not a time to raise taxes.
So I think what we can see again is a bipartisan majority saying, Speaker Pelosi, bring a bill to the floor that staves off tax increases period until we can get the economy back on track.
BLITZER: But under the hypothetical possibility, and it's a very real possibility if you speak to folks at the White House, the president could veto that and he could say, you know what, I'm sticking by my guns and I only want the tax rates to continue for the middle class, not for the wealthy, Congressman McCarthy, what do you do in a situation like that?
Do you allow taxes to go up for everyone?
MCCARTHY: Well, the president is wrong. What happens in that situation, he is taxing small business. He's taxing every individual, especially when it comes to dividends, think about those who are living on fixed income.
The president is wrong with the idea that he puts a new health care tax on, he has cap and trade looming out there, and then he goes out and raises the taxes on small businesses and he wonders why people aren't being hired. That's the difference. It doesn't have to be that way.
You've got a bipartisan -- you have three Democrats that are sitting in the House that's writing a letter telling the president he's wrong and asking others to join with us. We can have a bipartisan bill sent to the president that puts this country and doesn't increase taxes in a recession and actually turns around the tide to actually start it being -- people be hired.
BLITZER: But what if he doesn't blink and he holds firm, Congressman McCarthy, what are you going to do? Will you do what your leader, John Boehner, said on Sunday he would do?
MCCARTHY: I think the president would be wrong. What we would do is send the president a bill that doesn't raise taxes on anyone. It makes sure you do not raise taxes on small business in recession where unemployment is so high.
Remember, this is the president who told us if we pass the stimulus, unemployment would never go above 8 percent. Well, you know what, it's almost at 10. More Americans believe Elvis Presley is still alive than the stimulus actually created jobs.
I think the president ought to reacquaint (ph) this situation and listen to the bipartisan group that's in Washington to not raise taxes in a recession.
BLITZER: Well, we'll see who blinks on this issue first.
Let me move on to what happened in Delaware. Congressman Cantor, I'll get your response. Mike Castle, a longtime Republican member of the House, a man you know quite well, all of a sudden he loses to a tea party favorite, Kathleen (sic) O'Donnell. How shocked were you by that?
CANTOR: Wolf, I think this primary election that occurred last night in Delaware is not too much different than a lot of what the electorate has been demonstrating over the past almost year.
And that is the electorate is fed up. It's fed up with the spending. It's fed up with people who what to continue to expand government. And, frankly, they want people focusing on sustaining the promises that they make.
And I do think that that's what caused the outcome in the election last night.
BLITZER: Well, her win -- Christine O'Donnell, I should say, her win shows that a lot of voters out there, a lot of Republican conservative voters are fed up with Republicans.
CANTOR: Well, it's not just Republicans. It's the independents out there who are feeling the same frustration. People are tired of spending money we don't have. People are tired of the fact that, as Kevin points out, the spending stuff in the stimulus plan just hasn't worked. And yet there is no admission on the part of the White House or the Democratic majority that the programs don't work.
I mean, let's get down to it. People in American don't think spending more money in Washington are going to get people back to work. And I think that's the message that has been sent last night in Delaware and across the country.
BLITZER: So were you surprised, Congressman McCarthy, by Mike Castle's defeat? You know this congressman.
MCCARTHY: I know this congressman well. I wasn't surprised when you saw the momentum, any time somebody has the momentum, if you looked at the latest polls within there.
Remember, this is the seventh incumbent that, when you look through the different states, Utah and others, that have gone down, this is an unusual year. And this is a year that people are trying to fight to take this country back, take this city back from a couple of different perspectives.
Yes, they're mad. It's an anti-incumbent year. That is a difficult time for incumbents when you're going through a Republican primary. But take that experience and put it to the Democrats when it comes to November. Because that is a frustration.
The tea party is stronger today than they were before. And the tea party's main focus is about spending. They would go to all of those rallies trying to make -- change people's opinion, and these elected officials have ignored them.
BLITZER: Is there no room, Congressman Cantor, for moderates in the Republican Party? Mike Castle being a moderate?
CANTOR: You know, Wolf, of course there are. I mean, let's go again and say what this election and the primary was about yesterday in Delaware. It is just the same and it is about pretty much everywhere right now. It's about too much spending. It's about people not delivering on promise they make. And it's about a commitment to make sure we get Washington out of so much of our -- every aspect of our lives.
That's what that was about. It's not about moderate or conservative. It is about common-sense fiscal discipline, and getting this country back on track. That's what the voters are feeling right now.
And, you know, look, Kevin and I and Paul wrote a new book. It's called "Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders." And what we're trying to do is say, look, we're the Republican Party that learned from our mistakes in the past.
We also are learning from all of the errors being committed by this administration and the Democratic majority in Congress. And we believe very strongly that if we stick to the principles of free enterprise, of limited government, of making sure that we understand that power comes from the people and let them keep more of their money they earn, that we can get this economy on track and get people back to work.
That's what we're about. We have unbelievable candidates out there running across the country who believe in a new inclusive Republican Party that stands for opportunity first.
BLITZER: Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy, two of the three authors of the new book "Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders." We'll have Paul Ryan on by himself, guys. He'll be here in THE SITUATION ROOM as well.
Thanks very much. Good luck with the book.
MCCARTHY: Thanks for having us.
CANTOR: Thanks, Wolf.