Everything below is a quote from MSNBC FirstRead from Thursday 3-12-09:
From NBC’s Ken Strickland
It was obvious to most Capitol Hill insiders why President Obama wanted Republican Judd Gregg as a member of his cabinet: He's one of the sharpest money-minds in Congress.
But instead of getting Gregg's counsel within the administration, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner found himself today of(sic) the receiving end of Gregg's fiscal conservative wrath.
In a hearing before the Senate Budget Committee Gregg dressed down Geithner with facts, figures, and charts. While always keeping his cool, the exchange was somewhere between a mother's scolding, a drill sergeant's questioning and an attorney's cross examination.
In his opening statement, Gregg politely called the administration's budget forecast a lie.
"The argument that it cuts the debt in half in four years is, ahh, is truly spurious," he told Geithner.
President Obama himself gives Gregg's comments a sense of stinging credibility. When the president introduced Gregg as his nominee for Commerce Secretary last month, he said Gregg is known for is fiscal discipline.