'This Week' Transcript: Tim Pawlenty and David Axelrod

PAWLENTY: There's only one candidate in this race who's actually cut Medicare and signed such a thing into law, and that's President Obama. $700 billion cut over the next 10 years. And Medicare and these other programs are going to be not available at all if we don't have some reforms. And so I think Congressman Ryan – and by the way, on a bipartisan approach, the Wyden, Senator Wyden and Congressman Ryan proposal is bipartisan. Democrats have supported that proposal as well, and the only person who hasn't put a specific entitlement reform proposal on the table that's a national leader is the president, and you'd think as the president of the United States and leader of our country, he'd have the courage and the wisdom and the intelligence to say, I know this is a big problem. I'm willing to put specifics on the table. But all he does and is duck and bob and weave on it. That's not leadership. That's not the kind of thing the president should be providing, and we need somebody who's actually going to get the job done.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So even though the Democrats were kind of licking their chops yesterday when they heard about the Paul Ryan choice, and polling right now at least shows that his plan does not have majority support, you don't think it's a vulnerability.

PAWLENTY: Well, I think the plan is, first of all, one that Congressman Ryan and Governor Romney can explain and present to the American people as a needed and responsible plan, so I don't think it is going to be a liability. And plus, it's leadership. And if people hear the plan and see that it's bipartisan, I think you'll see it gain more and more acceptance.

STEPHANOPOULOS: One of the other strains of criticism you're seeing crop up in these first hours is that this ticket is now lacking in national security experience. Also, they point out that Paul Ryan has only been a member of Congress, haven't had a member of Congress on the ticket since I think 1984, Geraldine Ferraro, limited national experience, and the experience he's had has all been inside the Beltway in Washington. No vulnerabilities there?

PAWLENTY: Well, Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan have a terrific national security and foreign policy team around them. These are very accomplished and smart individuals. Governor Romney has traveled extensively internationally and understands these issues very well. And I think the ticket, as presented before the country, is going to -- you're going to see a strong foreign policy and national security posture.

But don't -- don't assume that Governor Romney doesn't have foreign policy and international experience. My goodness. He spent his entire career in global business arrangements, transactions, traveling, and understanding different countries, cultures, geography, and the like. So he gets these issues very well and probably better than the president.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Let's talk about these ad controversies this week. You heard David Axelrod talk about the controversial ad by the Super PAC aligned with President Obama, also brought up that ad from the Romney campaign suggesting that President Obama would gut the work requirements inside welfare reform. They called it a bold-faced lie. You heard David Axelrod right there. Others agreed. And here's the ad that the Obama campaign played in response.


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