Paul Ryan on 'This Week'

The GOP vice presidential nominee on the economy and the 2012 election.
3:00 | 09/09/12

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Transcript for Paul Ryan on 'This Week'
for the democrats. But friday's mediocre's jobs report may be camp that down. When our opponent says that our nation is in this decline, they are dead wrong. This is america. Here now with a response just 58 days from the final votes, the republican nominee for vice president congressman paul ryan. Good morning, congressman. Hey, good morning, george. Good to be with you. Do you stand by your belief that america is a country in decline? I think president obama has placed us a path to decline. Americans struggling to find work. Highest poverty race in a generation. Nearly one out of six americans in poverty. We just learned on friday, it's the 43rd month of unemployment above 8%. For every person who got a job, last month, nearly four stopped looking for work. That's not a good direction. That's the wrong direction. George, we have to create 150,000 jobs every month just to keep up with population growth. It's on the wrong path. You and governor romney create 12 million jobs. It's almost exactly the number that the private sector economy say will be created no matter who's president. That seems to be a concession that your plans won't improve the economy from its current path. I beg to differ, we don't have a normal recovery today. Just look at the job numbers that we just got on friday. What we're saying is, it's president obama's failed leadership and failed policies which is why we have such stagnant recovery. If we get the right policies in place, the five-point plan, these are good economic, pro-growth policies, that we think if we get those pro-growth policies in place, we think this economy can grow a lot faster than it has been growing. But moody's economics said on this path, the country's on the path 12 million jobs. We're not on that kind of a path. We need to get on that kind of path, we need to get on a faster growth path. Educational policy. So workers can get good jobs in the 21st century. Getting spending and deficit under the control because that's hurting the economy. Helping small businesses. Making, growing things in america, selling them overseas with better trade. These are the things that worked in the past, they're proven success stories. We want to reapply those policies to the times. So, that we can get the kind of growth we need. You and governor romney have argued that your tax cuts would be paid for by closing loopholes for the wealthy. But president clinton took dead aim at this plan. On wednesday. Take a look. If they stay with this 5 dll trr tax plan, they'll have to eliminate so many deductions, the one likes home mortgage and charitable giving, that middle-class americans will see their tax bills up. Or two, they'll have to cut all of the programs that help to empower middle-class families. How do you make the math work without limiting the big deductions that the middle-class families rely on? First of all, those claims -- how have they been discredited? So, the analysis that you're seeing is not an analysis of the romney plan. We think that the secret to economic growth is lower tax rates for families and successful small businesses by closing loopholes. Not question what loopholes. High-income can shelter from taxation. If you take those tax shelters away from high-income earners, more of their income is subjected to taxation. Here's where the president wants to take the country, he wants to add a small tax increase and more loopholes, deductions of the code. More washington picking winners and losers. That will crush jobs. You have to remember, george, most of our small businesses pay their taxes as individuals. Most of our jobs come from these successful small businesses. We have shown, the princeton study, the harvard analysis, they have shown that you can lower taxes for the tax base, and yes, there is still room left for broad-based policies that the middle class enjoy so no one has a tax increase. We just stopped picking winners and losers. Many say it's going to be difficult to accept your word if you're not going to specify loopholes your willing to close. Don't they have a right to know what loopholes you're going to go after? Mitt romney and i, based on our experience, to show the framework the outline of the plans and to work with congress to do this. Isn't that a secret plan? No, no. No, no. What we don't want is a secret plan. What we don't want do is cut a back-door deal like obama care. We want to do this out in the open. George, because we want to have this debate in public and with congress. We want to do this with the consent the representatives of the people and figure out which loopholes should stay and go. Our priorities are, high-income earners should not get these kinds of loopholes. We should have a broad-based plan that goes to middle-class taxpayers so we can advance charities. We should do it out in the public view where the public can participate. That's exactly what I'm suggesting. Having it in public before the election so voters can have it before they make up the mind? We think the best way to do this is to get this framework in place, and then negotiate, work with democrats, work with people across the aisle, have these kind of hearings, have this conversation to get this objection. President clinton took aim at the savings of medicare. 35% reduction over the next decade and the president argued that it's going to be devastating for seniors who rely on medicaid for nursing home care. How can you squeeze that much money out of a program? 800 billion without cutting benefits or restricting eligibility. Here's the secret on this one. Med medicaid spending still goes up under what we're proposing. We want to repeal obama care. We're taking the massive increases in obama care. That are a attributable to medicaid. Third of the people that obama care is supposed to serve they're pushing them on medicaid. Medicaid isn't working. Doctors are less likely to take people on medicaid. We want to reform medicaid. We don't expand this program as dramatically obama care does, keep it like it is, increase its funding and send it to the states so the states can fix this problem. I think government closest to the people works the best. But the urban institute has estimated that between 14 million and 27 million fewer people will be covered under that plan and won't the bloc grant planning that mean low-income and disabled people will lose their guaranteed right to coverage? No, not at all. Of course not. Governors are asking us all the time flexibility on medicaid. Look, every state has fferent issues and different problems. So, we want to be able to give the states the tools they need. Make sure that they spend it on their medicaid population. Those individuals won't have a federal guarantee under that program? I won't get into te details. What we have done in the past, they still have to serve this population. They just get more flexibility on how to serve this population instead of all of these rules from washington that make it hard for them to make sure they meet the mandate. Let's talk about foreign policy and in his convention speech, president obama called your ticket new to foreign policy, that's a quote. You might not be ready for diplomacy to beijing if you can't visit the olympics without insulting our strongest ally. My opponent said that it was tragic to end the war in iraq and he won't tell us how he'll end the war in afghanistan. So, how will a president romney end the war in afghanistan? Look, those kind of comments are said when you don't have a good record to run on, when you're offering nothg but four more years of the same. You don't think he has a good foreign policy to run on, including the killing of osama bin laden? I think that's great sesz. Success. To your afghanistan question, we have said that we agreed the 2014 and where we're ended with afghanistan. But where we have taken issue is making sure that the generals on the ground get the resources throughout the entire fighting season, to keep our soldiers safe and offer counterinsurgency needs. So, we beg to differ with the president on parts of his afghanistan policy. But we support the 2014 deadline. Finally, a question about the debates. You're about to have the biggest debate of your life. Coming up in october. You'll be preparing for it tomorrow. I want to show you part of a fox news debate from the republican primaries and get you to respond. Here it was. Say you had a deal, a real spendings cut deal, 10-2, spending cuts to tax increases. Speaker, you're already shaking your head. Raise your hand if you feel taxes. If you had been on that stage, would you have raised your hand? It depends on the quality of the agreement, the quality of to policy. George, what matters to me isn't ratios what matters is the quality of policies. You wouldn't walk away from that in. There's no deal to walk away from it. You're not giving me a deal to look at, you're giving me ratios. Let me say this, our problem is not that we're overtaxed, we are overtaxed. Our problem is, we spend too much money. During the obama years, we borrowed almost 40 cents every dollar government was spending. Half of that borrowing came from other countries, namely china. That's unsustainable. The problem isn't we need to take more money from the hardworking taxpayers from america and spend it in washington, that doesn't work. The problem is, we have to get our spending under control. We have reform our entitlement programs. We need pro-growth economic policies to get people back to work. Economic growth, spending cuts, entitlement reforms, that's the recipe that works. That will trigger prosperity and get it back to growing the economy. If you get the kind of entitlement reforms that you get, you're willing to raise more revenues? Look, I believe that we'll get more revenue from strong econic growth. I don't want to chase some revenue line that compromises economic growth. Also, I don't want to take my eye off the ball that spending is the problem. The problem with president obama and his budgets are, add up his tax increases, all of his tax increases that he promises will come in january, they don't pay for a fifth of his propose deficit spending. They're just taking the money from small businesses and families and spending it. That doesn't work. That's bad economics. That doesn't help the debt crisis. We want real fiscal discipline. We believe with the right kind of economic growth policies and the right kind of tax reform, we'll get people going from an unemployment line to working and paying taxes. This will give us higher revenues. Congressman ryan, thank you very much for your time this morning. You bet, george.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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