'This Week' Transcript: Economic Panel

CORZINE: In the long run, though, we overemphasize taxes relative to the general confidence and the well-being of our middle class. That comes together, and you'll see it in the elections. If you have that high unemployment rate extending over a period of time, people are going to be mighty unhappy, and they're going to take it out on both Democrats and Republicans.

AMANPOUR: Let me just quickly go to what you've mentioned about being competitive with the rest of the world. The big story out of Europe this weekend is that Germany has shown a stronger-than-expected growth over the last quarter.

Laura, you were saying something about how Germany had -- had taught and trained its workforce to compete in these situations.

TYSON: Right. Well, Germany has had a long-term commitment to manufacturing. And it has a very strong manufacturing base. It has a much larger share of its economy in manufacturing than we do.

A major part of that is (inaudible) serious vocational training and very serious ongoing training for manufacturing workers in Germany. And oftentimes a German firm with German workers will retrain and use technology at home rather than offshore those jobs abroad.

AMANPOUR: All right.

TYSON: And I want to point out, also, that Germany manages to do this with a much higher tax rate than we do. I think there should be corporate tax reform. I agree with what -- a lot of what Senator Corker and Martin Regalia have said, but we need investment.

And I would say, in thinking about the share of government and GDP, something that the senator mentioned, we need to distinguish between investment spending by the government -- whether it's federal, state or local -- and other spending.

AMANPOUR: OK.

TYSON: A dollar spent for infrastructure is different than a dollar spent for current operations of government.

AMANPOUR: All right. We've got about 30 seconds left. I want to know, do you think, Martin Regalia -- and then Senator Corker -- can some confidence be injected into the American consumer anytime soon?

REGALIA: Yes, I think it can. I think one thing that we have to address right away is, what's going to happen at the end of the year with the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts? There ought to be an extension, at least a temporary extension, and that would help to -- to ease both the consumers' fears and the business fears.

AMANPOUR: Senator Corker, 15 seconds.

CORKER: Yes, I agree with that. Let's -- let's leave tax policy as it is. Mark Zandi had a great piece today in the New York Times saying the same. Let's not fiddle any more. Let's leave it -- let's leave things so they're predictable and deal with -- deal with this down the road.

AMANPOUR: Well, we'll see how that plays out ahead of the elections and afterwards. Thank you all for joining us on this important topic.

CORKER: Thank you.

AMANPOUR: And we turn now to Pakistan, a major U.S. ally, where a major humanitarian crisis in its third week. Pakistan's government says the worst flooding in that nation's history has left 20 million people homeless. U.S. military helicopters are providing a lifeline for many there, but the U.N. says that 6 million people are in need of food, water and shelter.

ABC's Jim Sciutto flew into Pakistan's Swat Valley with a U.S. Army relief mission.

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