'This Week' Full Transcript: Dec. 13, 2009

STEPHANOPOULOS: OK, let me ask you just a final question. President Obama is calling in the heads of some of the country's biggest banks tomorrow to try to get them to lend more to small businesses and consumers, and that seems to be a big failing so far. You point out that the administration has stabilized some of the programs, have stabilized the financial industry. But we see the banks making money, paying back the TARP funds, but not really increasing lending. What more can President Obama do to encourage that, or is the bully pulpit really his only option?

SUMMERS: Look, he's going to have a serious talk with the bankers. The country did incredible things for the banking industry. Those things had to be done to save the economy, but no major bank would be intact, in a position to pay bonuses, if that extraordinary support had not been provided. The bankers need to recognize that. They need to recognize that they've got obligations to the country after all that's been done for them, and there is a lot more they can do, and President Obama is going to be talking with them about what they can do to support enhanced lending to customers across the country. We were there for them. And the banks need to do everything they can to be sure they're there for customers across this country.

STEPHANOPOULOS: OK. Thank you very much, Mr. Summers. Let me now bring in Congressman Cantor. And you heard Larry Summers there, Congressman Cantor. The president is going to be bringing in the banks for a serious talk tomorrow. What should he say to them?

CANTOR: Well, listen, George, no question that there is a still a deprivation of credit in this country for small businesses. And when the president meets with the bankers, I hope that the discussion centers on what seems to be a real overreaction, if you will, on the part of some auditors in the regulatory arena that are looking at risk taking as something that just shouldn't be done at all. We know in our economy that the prosperity we know has been built on calculated risk. What we've got now is a situation where there are so many performing loans out there that seem to be called by regulators, because we still have a depression in our asset values. And what I'm hopeful that the discussion occurs is about that, is about trying to get some type of transparency on the part of what regulators are asking of our banks, so that we understand and policy makers in Washington and frankly the small businesses that are looking to the banks can understand why it is that when they go to their bank, they're not getting their loan.

STEPHANOPOULOS: And it comes in the wake of the House passage on Friday of this financial reform legislation. Not a single Republican member of Congress voted for that bill. And yesterday, President Obama accused House Republicans of colluding with lobbyists in the financial industry to hurt American consumers. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: Just this week, Republican leaders in the House summoned more than 100 key lobbyists for the financial industry to a pep rally and urged them to redouble their efforts to block meaningful financial reform. We can't afford to let the same phony arguments and bad habits of Washington kill financial reform and leave American consumers and our economy vulnerable to another meltdown.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Your response?

Page
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...