CBS's Orr Warns Tea Party 'Hard Line' to End 'Collaborative Spirit' and Cause 'Partisan Bickering'
On Saturday's CBS Evening News, correspondent Bob Orr filed a report on the incoming Republican congressional freshmen, and, after noting that Rep.-elect Allen West was taking a "hard line" on federal spending, and after showing a clip of the Florida Republican raising doubts about compromising "your principles," the CBS correspondent used the cliche "partisan bickering" as he warned that such views could end the recent "collaborative spirit" in Congress, and plugged President Obama's call for "cooperation." Orr:
It's a warning of sorts that the collaborative spirit of the recent lame duck Congress may soon dissolve into renewed partisan bickering. President Obama, vacationing in Hawaii, today made a preemptive bid for continued cooperation.
After soundbites from Republican Rep.-elect Ben Quayle and the Politico's David Mark, Orr concluded his report predicting that Tea Party Republicans could "cause trouble" within the Republican caucus:
Now, the new Republican freshmen could also cause trouble in their own party caucus. Nearly half were elected with Tea Party support. That means they're not beholden to their party leaders, and they're real anxious to flex their new political muscles.
Below is a complete transcript of the report from the Saturday, January 1, CBS Evening News :
ANTHONY MASON: The biggest freshman class in more than 70 years will be taking the oath of office in the U.S. House of Representatives this coming week. Most of the new members are Republicans committed to making Congress change course. Bob Orr in Washington sets the scene.
BOB ORR: Freshman Florida Republican Allen West arrived in Washington with an agenda and an attitude.
REP.-ELECT ALLEN WEST (R-FL): The whole place is abuzz already about what is about to happen.
ORR: West, like many of the 87 new Republicans who will be sworn in Wednesday, is vowing to shrink government spending, and he's taking a hard line.
WEST: Compromise is not something that I think is a great thing if you surrender your principles.
UNIDENTIFIED MEMBER OF CONGRESS: The motion is adopted.
ORR: It's a warning of sorts that the collaborative spirit of the recent lame duck Congress may soon dissolve into renewed partisan bickering. President Obama, vacationing in Hawaii, today made a preemptive bid for continued cooperation.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I'm willing to work with anyone of either party who's got a good idea and the commitment to see it through. And we should all expect you to hold us accountable for our progress or our failure to deliver.
ORR: But Rep.-elect Ben Quayle of Arizona, the son of former Vice President Dan Quayle, accuses the President and congressional Democrats of wasting taxpayers' money.
REP.-ELECT BEN QUAYLE (R-AZ): They had massive spending and stimulus programs that did absolutely nothing to actually jumpstart our economy.
ORR: Quayle agrees both parties need to work to grow the economy but says spending cuts are required to reduce our trillion-dollar-plus annual deficits.
QUAYLE: There's going to be no sacred cows. Everything's going to be looked at and to see where we can make the cuts.
ORR: Republicans also pledged to repeal health care reform, stop tax hikes and strengthen congressional oversight. But, with Democrats still controlling the Senate and the White House, the political reality is the new GOP reformers can't do anything alone.
DAVID MARK, POLITICO.COM: Republicans, even though they don't like to talk about it now, also will have an incentive to compromise, to show they can govern, that they're not just the party of no.ORR: Now, the new Republican freshmen could also cause trouble in their own party caucus. Nearly half were elected with Tea Party support. That means they're not beholden to their party leaders, and they're real anxious to flex their new political muscles.
-Brad Wilmouth is a news analyst at the Media Research Center