August 11, 2012
FROM THE ARCHIVES: ROMNEY / RYAN ON NBC NEWS
Below is a collection of major NBC News interviews with presumptive Republican presidential nominee Fmr. Gov. Mitt Romney (R-MA) and his vice presidential running mate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) over the course of the 2012 campaign so far.
ROMNEY INTERVIEW WITH CHUCK TODD ON “NBC NIGHTLY NEWS” -- 8/9/12
CHUCK TODD: What do you want your running mate to say about you? What do you want your selection to say about what kind of president you're going to be?
GOV. MITT ROMNEY: I don't think I have anything for you on the VP running mate. Other than I-- I certainly expect to have a person that has a strength of character, a vision for the country that adds something to the political discourse about the direction of the country. I happen to believe this is a defining election for America, that we're going to be voting for what kind of America we're going to have.
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ROMNEY INTERVIEW WITH BRIAN WILLIAMS ON “NBC NIGHTLY NEWS” -- 7/25/12
Full transcript: http://bit.ly/P1009P
BRIAN WILLIAMS: When Mitt Romney arrives in Washington, how will Washington be any different from the Washington we've seen these past few years, which any American will tell you is hopelessly broken, busted?
MITT ROMNEY: You know, all I can say is that I got elected governor of a state that was 87% Democrat. And it was not lost on me that if I went around attacking the Democrat leadership, I was going to get nothing done and none of my vetoes would be upheld. And I began a relationship with the speaker of the House and the Senate president that was personal. We respected each other. We often disagreed. But we found common ground from time to time.
That has to happen. There has to be a president that buries the hatchet and says, "We're going to go to work to try and get America on track." We're at a critical time in this country. If we keep going down the path we're on, we're gonna end up like Europe or worse. It's time to have leadership that will put aside Republican and par-- and-- and Democrat, and instead focus on what's necessary for the nation. I'm willing to do that. I think others in Washington have recognized the need to do that. I see hopeful signs we're gonna finally get America on track again.
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RYAN INTERVIEW WITH DAVID GREGORY ON “MEET THE PRESS” -- 5/20/12
Full transcript: http://bit.ly/P0hrfj
Ryan: Obama’s approach to taxes is “recipe for economic stagnation”
REP. PAUL RYAN: What we're saying about taxes is take the tax shelters and the loopholes away from the well connected and the well off so we can lower tax rates for everybody so we can allow small businesses to grow and compete. Most of our businesses file their taxes as individuals. President Obama is content with bringing their top tax rate to as high as almost 45% in January when our competitors, even in Europe, have an average tax rate of about 25% on their businesses. We think that's a recipe for economic stagnation. Mitt Romney is showing a different path forward. And we put our ideas on the table. Unfortunately the Senate isn't even trying.
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Ryan: “Current law is bringing us toward a debt crisis.”
DAVID GREGORY: Are you saying that the election, one way or the other, will not change what Republican leaders will do and should do with regard to compromise?
REP. PAUL RYAN: Well, first of all, I'm not going to negotiate with myself on television before the election. Second of all, if the president acts the way he does today in the future, if he's reelected, how do we prevent a massive tax increase? I don't know, because you know what David? Current law is bringing this massive tax increase. Current law is bringing us toward a debt crisis. And if the president is unwilling to sign legislation to change or prevent current law, then we're going to have a huge tax increase. Then we're going to have a debt crisis. That's his burden of responsibility, so I can't answer for what he will or will not do or how a compromise might occur.
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“This is a stagnant economy. It’s going in the wrong direction.”
REP. PAUL RYAN: Look, just last month for every person who found a job in this economy, which was not nearly enough, three people stopped looking for a job. They gave up. Twenty-three million Americans are either unemployed, underemployed or simply stopped looking for work. This is a stagnant economy. It's going in the wrong direction. The president is not providing the kind of leadership we need to get this economy growing and to prevent a debt crisis. Mitt Romney will. He's providing this kind of leadership. He is giving the country a choice of which different vision.
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RYAN INTERVIEW WITH DAVID GREGORY ON “MEET THE PRESS” -- 2/19/12
Full transcript: http://bit.ly/zXxyE8
Ryan: the President “treats our constitutional rights as if they’re revocable privileges from our government”
REP. PAUL RYAN: What we're getting from the White House with this conscience issue, it's not an issue about contraception. It's an issue that reveals a political philosophy that the president is showing that basically treats our constitutional rights as if they're revocable privileges from our government, not inalienable rights by our creator. … I would simply say that [Obama] has a political philosophy that believes that he can mandate certain benefits and activities of the American people which conflicts with their constitutional rights. He believes that these new government-granted rights trump our constitutional rights such as our First Amendment rights to conscience, to freedom of religion.
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Ryan: The White House “ducking responsibility” will “make us more like Greece”
REP. PAUL RYAN: The White House's rhetoric just doesn't match the substance. What Chairman Bernanke said to us in the budget committee is if you put in place a long-term plan to fix our debt crisis that will help the economy today. The issue, David, is that the White House isn't even trying to solve this problem. ... What they're doing is they're not leading. They're ducking responsibility and that threatens our economy. And that will make us more like Greece.
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RYAN INTERVIEW WITH DAVID GREGORY ON “MEET THE PRESS” -- 10/9/12
Full transcript: http://bit.ly/NtXN7v
Ryan responds to Biden comments about Republicans not working with the president
DAVID GREGORY: The vice president saying there are limits on what any party can do when you have the other party willing to do nothing, absolutely nothing. That's the vice president talking. Are you offering anything different, other than complete opposition to what the president wants to do?
REP. PAUL RYAN: Well look, I suppose that's good politics, but it's not factually accurate. We've passed over a dozen pieces of legislation, jobs legislation, that are all sitting over in the Senate. … Here's the deal. We have a difference of opinion with the White House on how best to create jobs. We don't think doubling down on failed stimulus policies, which have already proven to fail, is the right way to go. So we want to work with ideas that have proven to work.
Ryan: “let’s go after crony capitalism”
REP. RYAN: The Republican message is we want to lower the barriers against Americans who want to rise. We want to make it easier for people to have upper mobility, economic opportunity. And we don't want to put new barriers in place for Americans who want to rise. And we want to go back with proven ideas that work to grow this economy.
And I would say, on the class warfare, there are a few points I would simply make, if you'll allow me. Number one, the math just doesn't work. Raising all these taxes on small businesses doesn't work. It's not just taxing the movie star, the baseball player, the Wall Street person. You're taxing the engine of economic growth, small businesses. If you took all the income from every millionaire in America today, it would run the government for about four months.
Second, I have a better idea. Instead of job-killing tax increases, why don't we just stop subsidizing wealthy people? I mean, let's go after the crony capitalism, the corporate welfare in the tax code, in spending. And why don't we income adjust our spending programs so that we don't subsidize wealthy people as much. I think that's a better idea to get more savings in the budget, get our debt down without doing economic damage.
And third, I think this divisive rhetoric is fairly--is divisive. I think it's troubling. Sowing class envy and social unrest is not what we do in America.
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RYAN INTERVIEW WITH DAVID GREGORY ON “MEET THE PRESS” -- 5/22/11
Full transcript: http://bit.ly/NUzPSi
Ryan asked about VP: “You never know what opportunities present themselves way down the road.”
DAVID GREGORY: So under no circumstances would you run or be on the ticket as a number two?
REP. PAUL RYAN: Look, I'm not going to get into all those hypotheticals. I'm not running for president. I'm not planning on running for president. If you're running for president, you've got to do a lot of things to line up a candidacy. I've not done any of those things. It's not my plan. My plan is to be a good chairman of the House Budget Committee and fight for the fiscal sanity of this nation.
DAVID GREGORY: Understood. There's a little bit of door opening there, though. The door's a bit ajar. And you know how this works.
REP. PAUL RYAN: It's not door opening, it's just-- I do know how this works. And I'm not going to get into all these hypotheticals in the future. My point is I'm not running for President. You never know what opportunities present themselves way down the road. I'm not talking about right now. And I wanna focus on fixing the fiscal problems of this country. And I really believe, David, where I am as Chairman of the House Budget Committee puts me in a great position to be a great contributor to this debate.
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Ryan on entitlement reform: “House Republicans have put out a plan to fix this problem... We have seen nothing of the like from the president and the Senate Democrats.”
REP. PAUL RYAN: Look, of course people are scared of entitlement reform. Because every time you put entitlement reform out there, the other party uses it as a political weapon against you. Look, both parties have done this to each other. Here's the problem, David. If we don't get serious about these issues, if we don't get serious about the drivers of our debt, we're going to have a debt crisis. ... I think we want to get above all of this. Look, here in Wisconsin, people are ready for answers. They want leadership. The Senate Democrats haven't even proposed or passed a budget for 753 days. So we House Republicans have put out a plan to fix this problem, save Medicare, and in fact, pay off the debt over time. We have seen nothing of the like from the president and the Senate Democrats.
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Ryan: people will “reward the leader who steps up to the plate and actually fixes these problems”
DAVID GREGORY: You are the chairman of the committee, yes. You're serious about entitlement reform, yes. You're also a politician. You say you want to do it on your terms. Law does not become law without building political consensus. And you don't have that. And now you had a major figure in the Republican Party say, "This was right wing social engineering." So I'm wondering how much you do feel undercut in actually getting this passed, which, I assume, is your goal.
REP. PAUL RYAN: First of all, if people are describing this accurately in polls, it's far more popular than the poll you've referenced. Second of all, leaders are elected to lead. I don't consult polls to tell me what my principles are or what our policies should be. Leaders change the polls. … People are hungry for solutions. And I really, fundamentally believe that the people are way ahead of the political class. And I think they're going to reward the leader who steps up to the plate and actually fixes these problems, no matter how much demagoguery, no matter how much distortion, no matter how much political parties try to scare seniors in the next election. I just don't they're gonna buy it this year. And they're hungry for leaders to fix this problem before it gets out of our control.
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