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Home Depot Co-Founder Langone: America's Best Days Are Ahead

Wednesday, 16 May 2012 09:44 AM

Despite rampant government spending and heavy-handed regulations, the country's best days do lie ahead, as the U.S. has shown a history of doing away with policies — and politicians — that don't foster an entrepreneurial spirit, says investor and Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone.

"Talking about America, let me tell you something right now — I am 100 percent invested," Langone tells CNBC's Squawk Box.

"Our best days as a nation are ahead of us. I'm talking about great days. We are a great nation. Every once in a while we get a little foolish and we do things and we get through it. We'll get through this."

Editor's Note: I Wish I Were Wrong — Economist Laments Being Right. See Interview.

Looking ahead, Mitt Romney will likely beat Barack Obama in this year's presidential elections, Langone predicts.

"This I believe: When he wins he will have a massive number of people with significant business experience going in and helping him address this overspending," says Langone.

"We can't afford what we're doing as a nation. But you can't do it with a guy whose entire existence is making speeches," Langone adds, referring to President Barack Obama

If and when Romney takes the White House, Langone says, top priority should involve implementing the fiscal reforms outlined in the Simpson-Bowles deficit reduction plan.

Erskine Bowles, a North Carolina Democrat, and Wyoming Republican Alan Simpson delivered a 2010 proposal to narrow deficits that called for a blend of revenue hikes and spending cuts that won praise from both parties though it never left the drawing board.

"Simpson and Bowles goes a long way towards demonstrating to the world that we're in the process of getting our house in order — a very simple thing," Langone says.

Whoever wins needs to reach across the aisle and tackle fiscal deficits, says former President Bill Clinton.

Otherwise, investors in U.S. debt will demand a premium for putting their money in America on fears inability to tackle spending is hurting the economy.

"I think this budget issue should become front and center in this election," Clinton said on Tuesday at a fiscal summit sponsored by the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, CNNMoney reports.

"As soon as this election is over, I think the incentives will be there for both parties to make more compromises than they have in the past."

Editor's Note: I Wish I Were Wrong — Economist Laments Being Right. See Interview.

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