Transcript: 10 Freshmen Lawmakers Talk With Diane Sawyer

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DIANE SAWYER: But it's the first budget that you have to approve with a continuing resolution, because of historic reasons. Is this one? Will you approve it and say then we start day after?

FRANK GUINTA: Well, I think it really depends on what is in that continuing resolution.

MO BROOKS: We haven't seen it yet. We really need to see it. See the details. And decide whether that's in accord with our philosophy of government. If it is, we'll support it. If it's not, we won't.

VICKY HARTZLER: That's an--

PAUL GOSAR: And I also think it comes with conditions. Is that you never agree to anything until you've set benchmarks. Because this is something that's been growing over time. And it's not going to be cured right away. So, we have to look at what created this problem and set benchmarks that, "Okay, if I do this, I want the following things to be met." And then we'll go down the road again. And that-- we want to teach America that we can do this incrementally and get back on a financial path--

DIANE SAWYER: Is this called compromise?

MICHAEL GRIMM: Sure. But that-- and that that's-- th-- of course, there's compromise. But the reality is that the problem is in challenges that we're facing as a nation are almost insurmountable. And the-- the success of this Congress, in my opinion, is going to be on how we articulate and-- and have a discussion with the American People. Is it open? Is it honest? Do we tell them how difficult this is gonna be? If we do it behind closed doors and force things upon them that they have no say and no one knows what's really happening, then we failed.

DIANE SAWYER: What collectively-- and I know this is hard to do as a group discussion, if you're tell-- saying to everybody out there, "Here's the biggest thing we're gonna cut right away. The first big thing we're gonna cut. Now." What will it be?

VICKY HARTZLER: I think that we need to restore all spending levels to the 2008 level, across the board. We need to make sure that the stimulus funds that are unallocated are not spent. Those would just stop-- immediately and save us a lot of money right there.

RAND PAUL: You save probably $100 billion by goin' back to 2008 levels. There's an astronomic increase in spending from 2008 to the present. So, that saves $100 billion right there.

DIANE SAWYER: But just in the paper this morning, the budget advisor at the White House said-- that is inevitably going to mean federal assistance for teacher pay. It will mean cutting 20 to 40,000 teachers. You're gonna have…

FRANK GUINTA: That's typical. This is typical Washington speak. Okay? We are here to represent and reflect the values of the country. And the country has said very directly, "Stop the spending. Restore-- a smaller sense and size of government." And we have that obligation--

DIANE SAWYER: That takes us--

FRANK GUINTA: --to do that.

DIANE SAWYER: --to the debt ceiling. And as we know the-- there is now $400 billion left before the United States crashes against the top of the debt ceiling. And if the debt ceiling isn't raised, Austan Goolsby just said-- the advisor at the White House just said it will be catastrophic. That it will be the first time in history that there will be a default by the United States caused by--

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