The 4 Most-Important Quotes from the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council

Nov 20, 2013

CEOs, government officials, and issue experts gathered this week in Washington, D.C. at the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council, where immigration reform, IT procurement, protecting America’s credit, and economic uncertainty highlighted the discussions. Here are four key quotes from the event:

President Obama on getting immigration reform through the House of Representatives:

[I]f they want to chop [the bill] up into five pieces, as long as all five pieces get done, I don’t care what it looks like as long as it’s actually delivering on those core values that we talk about.

President Obama on how the federal government buys information technology in light of the launch of

There is a larger problem that I probably -- speak personally, but also as the administration -- could have identified earlier, and that is the way the federal government does procurement and does IT is just generally not very efficient.  In fact, there's probably no bigger gap between the private sector and the public sector than IT.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew on Washington avoiding future debt crises:

There really is no alternative but to raise the debt limit when you need to borrow in order to pay the bills. The full faith and credit of the United States -- whether it’s bonds or contracts or benefits -- has to be honored.

Robert Reynolds, president and CEO of Putnam Investments on growing the economy:

The greatest stimulus in the economy is certainty and we haven’t had any of that. Are you going to hire people knowing that you won’t know what the cost is going to be?

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