‘Severely Diminished Capacity’: White House Ups Rhetoric Against GOP

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday that Republicans who support the Paul Ryan budget’s cuts to education and clean energy have a “severely diminished capacity” and are “aggressively and deliberately ignorant” of the global economy.

The fiery, personal remarks — unusual for a White House known for being cautious with its rhetoric — may be a sign of the heated clash ahead in this election year as Democrats and Republicans compete over their visions for the country.

The full exchange between Carney and a reporter aboard Air Force One, according to a White House pool report:

 Q    — the Republican budget, I think administration folks have said would make — cut pretty deeply into investments in clean energy.

     MR. CARNEY:  Well, that is an excellent point and I’m glad you raised it. 

     Q    Senior administration officials have raised it.

     MR. CARNEY:  Among the many serious problems with the Ryan budget, Republican budget proposal, is its dramatic cuts in some of the absolutely essential programs that we need to sustain and the investments that we need to make to secure America’s economic future.  Education, Pell grants is one; investments in clean energy is another. 

I mean, again, it is — you have to be aggressively and deliberately ignorant of the world economy not to know and understand that clean energy technologies are going to play a huge role in the 21st century.  You have to have severely diminished capacity to understand what drives economic growth in industrialized countries in this century if you do not understand that education is the key that unlocks the door to prosperity.  The budget proposed by Chairman Ryan and supported overwhelmingly already by Republicans suggests that those problems exist in the minds of the supporters of that plan.

That was a bad sentence, but you get my point.  I lost track because I was watching RG3 over there, future quarterback of my Washington Redskins.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sahil Kapur is TPM's senior congressional reporter and Supreme Court correspondent. His articles have been published in the Huffington Post, The Guardian and The New Republic. Email him at sahil@talkingpointsmemo.com and follow him on Twitter at @sahilkapur.
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