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EXCLUSIVE — Jeb Bush Interview with Breitbart News: Budget ‘Deals’ Mean More Spending, USA ‘Needs a Strong Europe’

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Former Florida Governor and 2016 Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush connected with Breitbart News for an interview on taxes, “pragmatic” conservatism, and trade. We print the full questions and answer here:

1.) Gov. Bush, your economic plan calls for 4% compound annual growth. We understand that arithmetically this pulls the country out of the doldrums and starts us on a road to recovery. But exactly HOW do you propose to do it–what are your key building blocks to actually achieve this?

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In order to achieve real, sustained 4% economic growth, we need to fix a few big things as a country: how we tax, how we spend, how we regulate, embracing the energy revolution in our midst, and repealing and replacing Obamacare. I have laid out detailed, sweeping, and specific plans on each of these issues that you can read at Jeb2016.com. The central premise is getting Washington D.C. off the backs of job creators and putting more money in the hands of working Americans and less in the hands of crony capitalists.

That means lower taxes across the board, eliminating special deals, a balanced budget amendment, cutting down the federal workforce, and repealing and reforming the Obama administration’s tidal wave of regulations drowning our economy.

We also need to invest in American energy, which will create more high-wage jobs and lower energy prices for American families.

2.) You pride yourself, quite rightly, in being a pragmatic conservative in action–so much so that your nickname during your time as governor was “Veto Corleone.” What are some of the bills you would have vetoed during President Obama’s term? Would you have vetoed last week’s budget bill?

It’s hard to pick where to start! I certainly would have vetoed the trillion-dollar “stimulus” spending bill, Obamacare, Dodd-Frank, and the countless bloated spending bills that have become a normal part of the Obama/Clinton agenda. As for the budget agreement, it was only necessary because of President Obama’s utter failure to lead on taxes, spending, and entitlements. Only in Washington does every budget “deal” lead to more spending. I have laid out a detailed, specific agenda to break Washington’s gridlock and address the big problems our country faces–which will make such last-minute, deadline-driven “deals” unnecessary.

3.) This week, U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said the UK could not count on a bi-lateral trade deal with America if her people voted to leave the EU. This is sending a chilling warning to the “British Exit” camp. Do you support this effort by President Obama and would you as President enter into a bi-lateral trade deal with a United Kingdom that left the EU?

The United States needs a strong Europe, and we have a special relationship and historic bond with Great Britain. As I’ve stressed in my conversations with British and European leaders, in light of growing dangers from Russia in the East and terrorism from North Africa and the Middle East, I believe a strong Trans-Atlantic alliance is as important as ever for U.S. national security.

Great Britain is a sovereign nation, and they must make this decision about their relationship with Europe on their own. The U.S. should not be putting a thumb on the scale and certainly shouldn’t bully an ally. That said, as President, if Great Britain made that decision of course the U.S. would work with them on a trade agreement.


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