'This Week' Transcript: GOP Candidate Rick Santorum and Rep. Barney Frank

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They would be the ones who would say, OK, we're not going to let anything happen. We're going say no. We're not going to raise the debt limit. We're not going to do this. In general the people who want to say no, the people who want to do the veto, have a certain leverage, because total inaction, chaos is on their side.

AMANPOUR: So is that what...

FRANK: But unusually, in this coming year...

AMANPOUR: Sorry, I didn't...

FRANK: I was going to say, in this coming year.

AMANPOUR: Is that what you see, gridlock? Do you see gridlock in this coming year? Will some of the business that the people hope...

FRANK: No.

AMANPOUR: ... will happen, will it happen or not?

FRANK: No, that's what I was trying to say is that, unusually this year, inertia has now become a force for action in an odd way. If nothing happens this year, if Congress passes no legislation, two things will happen, all of the Bush tax cuts will expire at the end of the year. Everybody's taxes will go up, lower income, middle income, and the wealthy.

Secondly, the sequestration will go into effect, and there will be broad cuts across the board in which, for the first time in my memory, military spending reductions will be greater than the domestic because of the way it works.

What that means is this, those on the conservative side who control the House, if they continue to say, no deal unless you do everything we want, and we say, fine, we're ready to compromise but we're not just going to give in to you, then taxes go up on everybody and military spending is cut hard.

Therefore, in this unusual circumstance where bad things from the conservative standpoint will happen if nothing happens, there will have to be a deal. So I think there will be a deal. And our position, I believe, the president has articulated it, we are for extending tax cuts for most people, but not for the top 1 or 2 percent where we can make over a 10-year period hundreds of billions.

Secondly, I think Democrats -- I would be ready to live with the military cuts in the sequester, but I think there would be a majority of Democrats saying, you know what, we want some military reductions, we don't need to continue to protect Germany against Stalin, but we'll compromise.

So I think you're going to see this year, because of the consequences of inaction, an unusual situation where there will be action on both an amendment to the sequester and to the taxes.

AMANPOUR: All right, Congressman Frank, and turning to the actual general election right now, you have probably heard our "Roundtable" discussing the ups and downs of the various candidates with Newt Gingrich being most certainly up right now.

Now you did say, and I'm not sure when you said it, but you said that Newt would be the best thing to happen to Democrats since Barry Goldwater. So for the post-Goldwater generation what do you precisely mean there?

FRANK: He would be a very weak candidate. He would lose heavily and lot of Democrats would win races in which there would be a great fall-off. I think Newt Gingrich is the anti-candidate -- the split between the extremely conservative sector of America, which is the Republican presidential primary electorate, and the rest of the country, is very clear.

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