08/15/2012 05:35 pm ET Updated Aug 16, 2012

Ed Gillespie, Mitt Romney Adviser, Can't Recall When Candidate's Budget Balances

Mitt Romney adviser Ed Gillespie, appearing on CNN Wednesday, spent considerable time attacking President Barack Obama's budget, but said he did not know when Mitt Romney's plan would balance the budget.

"The Romney plan for deficit reduction will put us on a path to a balanced budget," Gillespie said. "Barack Obama's plan is more of the same. We can't afford that kind of debt in this country. And that's the choice. The Romney plan for deficit reduction -- which is ... a significant part of the Romney plan for a stronger middle class -- versus what we know to be a failed record on President Obama's part."

Wolf Blitzer asked him when the Romney budget would be balanced. Gillespie said he wasn't sure and would let him know later.

"I should know it. I'm embarrassed on your air that I don't have that number at the top of my head. I didn't know we were going to talk about that today. I apologize," Gillespie said.

Romney has said his proposed budget would be balanced in eight to 10 years. In a Keynesian admission, Romney has said that he doesn't want to cut federal spending too fast, lest it cause another recession.

But his budget cuts to get to that target would be so severe that they may never come into effect. "If Romney is elected, then by his third year in office, every single federal program that is not Medicare, Social Security, or defense, will be cut, on average, by 40 percent," wrote Ezra Klein of the Washington Post. "That means Medicaid, infrastructure, education, food safety, road safety, the Postal Service, basic research, foreign aid, housing subsidies, food stamps, the census, Pell grants, the Patent and Trademark Office, the FDA — all of it has to be cut by, on average, 40 percent."



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