Martin Bashir | November 16, 2012
>>> we here want to wish a very happy birthday from all of us to speaker john boehner , 63 years young tomorrow. we also hope it isn't too late for the speaker to turn over a new leaf in his leadership of the house of representatives . for two years now you have run the lower chamber as if obstructing the president was more important than allowing the country to make progress. there was an emphatic election victory which only shows the people's desire for compromise. john larson from connecticut is joining us.
>> good afternoon.
>> the president's first term, as you know, was marked by unprecedented levels of obstruction, the debt ceiling do backcle led to the downgrading of the u.s. we know the stock market is already showing signs of anxiety, and the president has just won an overwhelming victory. what more does speaker boehner require to reach an agreement with the president?
>> well, i think speaker boehner has struck the right tone. clearly both from election -- the day after the election and including today we had the opportunity to meet with leader pelosi afterwards who was very encouraging about the meeting that took place in the white house , and i think boehner has always been, who is an institutionalist, has always cared deeply about this and would have struck the right deal. it's always been that element within the republican conference that has kept him from getting there, but i see a different kind of resolve and obviously, martin, for the interests of the country we hope that they don't lead us off this cliff that, as you point out, is artificially created by them, and so there's -- i think there's great hope that we can get this accomplished and set up the framework for the next session.
>> okay. well, i want to play something for you of that encapsulates the outlook of some republicans. listen to this.
>> i mean, it's a proven political strategy, which is give a bunch of money from the government to a group and, guess what, they'll vote for you. let me tell you what i would do if i was a democrat running four years from now? i'd say you know what, dental care ought to be included in obama care.
>> now, first of all, the affordable care act does actually provide dental care for children, but how can you find agreement with people who don't just reject any form of government support, they actually believe that providing assistance to those in need is actually flat out wrong?
>> and i don't think they completely understand both how offensive and insulting their remarks come to the hard- working people all across this country. i would only add that it's part of why we had so many record gains in the house of representatives and why we added to our margins in the senate and why president obama is president. i think smart republicans get this, and they understand what they have to do. and more importantly, their effort, you know, where they would have rather seen obama fail than the nation succeed, well, that's over. it's time to turn the page . it's time to work together. martin, as you have said on this program many times, the great strength of this nation is both our rugged individualism and individuality and how we need to pull together as a community. this is one of those times, and as we approach our great holiday of thanksgiving, shouldn't we be focused on those americans out of work, put them back to work, we can do that. in the time period that we have. we can deal with the tax issue in a way that impacts the middle class , but everybody so that we're sending clear messages and then deal long term with the issues of bending the costs of health care in general at 17% of our gross domestic product and lowering that so we're not impacting the benefits that we provide beneficiaries. there's great room here and a great opportunity. we'll see if our colleagues on the other side have the will to cooperate and make this happen and put the interests of america first.
>> congressman john larson , a wonderfully optimistic and positive view. thank you, sir.