Authoritarian governments are known for having a boot on the neck of freedom. CNBC’s on air editor Rick Santelli said the Obama administration had a "boot on business."
Santelli was rumbling with former Obama official and Brookings Institution economist Aaron Klein over taxes, spending and whether the Obama administration enacted “pro-growth” economic reforms.
One Sept. 7, Klein and Santelli argued over the impact of GOP-led tax reform under Trump and whether tax cuts or spending were driving the deficit problem. Klein, who worked in the Treasury Department under Obama, also claimed the first two years had a “sweeping set of reforms,” but criticized the Trump administration for passing “little policy.”
Squawk Box co-host Joe Kernen eventually returned to that debate asking, “Rick, where were you when we had the pro-growth policies in the first two year of the Obama administration? I remember Obamacare. I don’t remember a single pro-growth policy in eight years.”
“There was no pro-growth. You know what there was,” Santelli asked as he bent down and removed his boot. “This is what there was!”
He shook the boot at the camera, before placing it on the back of his neck and adding, “This is what there was in the first two years. A boot on business! That’s what there was! Just so you know.”
Kernen reacted, “That’s a good one!”
“This is history. This is what the last president thought about business,” Santelli said again, once more placing the boot on his neck.
In the midst of the argument over deficits, earlier in the broadcast Klein referenced Santelli’s famous rant from 2009, calling for a “Tea Party” in response to the Obama administration’s mortgage bailout plan.