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TESS VIGELAND: Henry Paulson brought his Wall Street bonafides to Capitol Hill today.The former Goldman Sachs CEO is President Bush's nominee to replace John Snow as Treasury secretary. At his Senate confirmation hearing Paulson addressed a wide range of issues, including the bloated federal deficit.
HENRY PAULSON:"Would I like spending to be less? Yes. Would I like the deficit to be less? Yes. But it's manageable; it's within the realm of a historical norm, and we can attack it from the standpoint of a strong and growing economy."
Despite any deficit concerns, Paulson said he supports making the Bush Administration's tax cuts permanent.He was also questioned about the government's secret use of a massive banking database to track people it suspects of financing terrorism.
PAULSON: Financial privacy is an important objective. Protecting the safety of the American people is essential. And, when you really think about it, it's essential to preserving our fundamental freedoms.
Paulson says he needs to learn more about the program.