Rep. Raul Grijalva (D., Ariz.) argued Medicare and Medicaid cannot be on the table in fiscal cliff negotiations Tuesday — as the market fell during the interview with CNBC's "Closing Bell."
GRIJALVA: The middle ground is the fair share. By putting the earned benefit programs on the table as being the source for the deficit and the only way to reduce that and to balance this, I think is wrong when there is no significant revenue, not just token gestures of token appeals of tax deductions and other areas, but a significant restructuring of that code to bring us back in line the way that we were under Clinton–
MICHELLE CARUSO-CABRERA: Representative, you know as we're talking the market is selling off once again. Every time members of Congress come on–and I've got to tell you, sir, I think you're contributing to fears that we're going off the fiscal cliff because it doesn't sound like there's any compromise in what you're saying. Do you care that markets are selling off dramatically when it looks like you guys can't come to a deal?
GRIJALVA: Of course I do. And I also care that we've asked working families and the middle class to carry the burden for two decades on these tax rates and the revenue generation for this country.
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The Arizona Democrat said he is willing to go over the fiscal cliff and that any prospective deal must focus on revenue increased via tax hikes on the wealthy and corporations.
Full interview below:
Update (4:32 p.m.): This post incorrectly stated the market fell 80 points during the interview; the market had fallen 80 points on the day. The error has been corrected.