Transcript: 10 Freshmen Lawmakers Talk With Diane Sawyer


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--

MARLIN STUTZMAN: It doesn't have to happen. I mean, I-- I'm a small business owner. And all of a sudden the bank comes to me. And all of a sudden the bank comes to me and says, "We're not giving you any more money." You know what I go out and do? I go out and I start liquidating. I find things that I don't have to-- that I don't need and I sell it. I go out and I find expenditures that are too big. I find ways to-- to minimize it.

DIANE SAWYER: But can I ask for a show of hands again. How many of you are going to vote against--

MIKE LEE: I don't think you can ask that question in the abstract. I don't think we can answer that without knowing whether it's part of a deal to enact a balanced budget amendment. I personally think that's the answer. We're going right now in the same direction that we were going in, you know-- after the original Tea Party movement in 1773. Where Americans proclaimed what they did not want from their national government. It took 'em 14 years to get to 1787, where they went to Philadelphia and proclaimed what they did want.


MALE VOICE: That's where we are.

DIANE SAWYER: --condition for the rest of you? A balanced budget amendment?

MO BROOKS: If there's a balanced budget Constitutional Amendment that is tied to the debt ceiling, I will vote to increase the debt ceiling under those conditions. But we have to make progress. This unsustainable deficit that we are incurring on an annual basis is the greatest national security threat, in my judgment, that America faces.

PAUL GOSAR: And Diane, it's not just-- it's not just the balanced budget act. It's-- it's setting the benchmarks and a timetable. We just—it was brought over here that we were talking about businesses. And-- and there are certain things you want to do in a qual-- collaborative aspect. Saying, "We'll do this given this. And you must perform this by this date." And I think that's what-- the American People have really wanted.

DIANE SAWYER: Senator DeMint-- DeMint--

MALE VOICE: And it know they're saying--

DIANE SAWYER: --said this is the time for a showdown. This is the big showdown.

VICKY HARTZLER: There's got to be--

DIANE SAWYER: Is this the big showdown?

VICKY HARTZLER: There's got to be a time where you say no. Where you say no more. We've got to get our house in order.


DIANE SAWYER: --saying it would be catastrophic to--

RAND PAUL: But they present it as a false choice. The advisor to the President says, "Either you raise the debt ceiling or catastrophe happens." What about we spend what we take in? What about what we were talking about? Is there not a third way?

MALE VOICE: I think it's--

DIANE SAWYER: But you're talking--

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