During the Republican Primary Debate, the candidates received a question via twitter that asked: "How do you explain the Occupy Wall Street movement happening across the country? And how does it relate with your message?" CNN's Anderson Cooper opens this question with Herman Cain because "two weeks ago, [he] said 'Don't blame Wall Street, don't blame the big banks. If you don't have a job, and you're not rich, blame yourself.' That was two weeks ago. The movement has grown. Do you still say that?"
Cain quickly answered, "Yes, I do still say that. And here’s why...They might be frustrated with Wall Street and the bankers, but they’re directing their anger at the wrong place. Wall Street didn’t put in failed economic policies. Wall Street didn’t spend a trillion dollars that didn’t do any good. Wall Street isn’t going around the country trying to sell another $450 billion. They ought to be over in front of the White House taking out their frustration. So I do stand by them." (See 1st paragraph under Paul before reading the 2nd paragraph under Cain.)
In response to Paul's first paragraph below: "All I want to say is that representative Paul is partly right, but he’s mixing problems here. It’s more than one problem. Look, the people — the banks — yes, the banks and the businesses on Wall Street, yes, the way that was administered was not right. But my point is this: What are the people who are protesting want from bankers on Wall Street, to come downstairs and write them a check? This is what we don’t understand. Take — go and get to the source of the problem, is all I’m saying. And that's the White House"
Paul immediately followed Cain saying "I think Mr. Cain has blamed the victims. There’s a lot of people that are victims of this business cycle. We can’t blame the victims. But we also have to point — I’d go to Washington as well as Wall Street, but I’d go over to the Federal Reserve. They create the financial bubbles. And you have to understand that you can’t solve these problems if you don’t know where these bubbles come from. But then, when the bailout came and supported by both parties, you have to realize, oh, wait, Republicans were still in charge. So the bailouts came from both parties. Guess who they bailed out? The big corporations of people who were ripping off the people in the derivatives market. And they said, oh, the world’s going to come to an end unless we bail out all the banks. So the banks were involved, and the Federal Reserve was involved. But who got stuck? The middle class got stuck. They got stuck. They lost their jobs, and they lost their houses. If you had to give money out, you should have given it to people who were losing their mortgages, not to the banks." (Read paragraph two under Cain now)
Yes, the argument is it’s — the program was OK, but it was mismanaged. But I work on the assumption that government’s not very capable of managing almost anything so you shouldn’t put that much trust in the government. You have — you have to trust the marketplace. And when the government gets involved, they have to deal with the fraud. And how many people have gone to jail either in the government, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, that participated in this heist? And nobody suffers the consequences. All these investigations, and yet the people who lose their jobs and lose their houses, it’s their fault, according — that’s why they’re on Wall Street. And we can’t blame them. We have to blame the business cycle and the economic policies over the last 10 years that led to this disaster"
After allowing Cain and Paul to go back and forth, Cooper tells us Romney had "originally called the protests 'dangerous'...[and] 'class warfare,'" but "recently sounded more sympathetic." Cooper asks Romney "Where do you stand now? What is your message to those people protesting?"
Romney responds saying "we can spend our time talking about what happened three years ago and what the cause was of our collapse. But let’s talk about what’s happened over the last three years. We’ve had a president responsible for this economy for the last three years, and he’s failed us. He’s failed us in part because he has no idea how the private sector works or how to create jobs. On every single issue, he’s made it harder for our economy to reboot. And as a result, we have 25 million Americans out of work or stopped looking for work or in part- time work and......
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