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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  September 13, 2016 12:30pm-2:16pm EDT

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gitmo and bringing them to america. we'll have a bill that prohibits that as well. so just as our governor, mike pence, travels this country talking about the future, in the house we'll be leading a better way agenda and look forward to -- after this election -- to have a team in the white house that will sign the bills to protect us from the tax increases, give us greater transparency, reform the v.a. system and give us all the security we need. >> it was great having our friend mike pence join us today. governor, we appreciate you being there. you could tell enthusiasm in the room with our members, many of whom mike served with. but it was the same kind of enthusiasm i've seen as i've gone around the country traveling, campaigning for house republicans. you can sense in those states, whether it's a swing state or not, that there is incredible
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momentum behind the trump/pence ticket, and it's growing. i know i personally thanked mike for what they did when donald trump and mike pence came down to south louisiana just a few weeks ago. and while people were at their lowest point gutting their houses during and after this tragic flood that we experienced, you could see not only how, how much they lifted people up at a incredibly low time, how much it really gave people spirit to know there was somebody that really cared, that they showed up. went to churches and gave out relief supplies to people. that's the kind of people that they are when you look at the momentum behind the trump/pence ticket. it shows you that people are really responding to their message of making america great again. and as we talk about our message of a better way, the a agenda that we've pushed as house republicans to show how you can get the country back on track, create jobs, rebuild the middle class and how you can strengthen a military that's been depleted.
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it goes hand in hand with the message that donald trump and mike pence have been delivering all around the country. it's why you've got such great enthusiasm. it's why we're going to win this election and be able to finally start turning this country around again. so, again, it was great seeing mike before our conference. the members are excited, but more importantly, you're seeing people all around the country excited about the optimism that their ticket, the trump/pence ticket, is giving to making america great again. >> well, it was a highlight of this year, actually, to have mike pence here today addressing our conference, and we are very proud to have him on the ticket, proud of the leadership that he is bringing. and as you think about this election, it's been anything but status quo. clearly, this country is hungry for new, fresh, dynamic leadership. and what we see being offered by the other side is a defense of the status quo. it's a defense of the top-down
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government-knows-best approach. and what we've been offering as republicans from the beginning of this year has been that bottom-up, empowering people, making sure that the people's voice is restored in this government, that we have a government that reflects the consent of the governed. because at the end of the day, we need to be about the farmer, the builder, the today-at- stay-at-home parent, the veteran. it should not be one in which a government continues to think that it knows best. and that is the choice that faces the country this fall. we are excited about the leadership of donald trump and mike pence that they've bringing to this country to help make america great again. >> well, it's good to see everybody. we had our last political conference today, ask we were joined by someone who needs no introduction. for hoosiers, mike pence is their governor. for americans, mike pence is donald trump's running mate, next vice president.
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for us, mike pence is a friend. mike pence is a former colleague. seven out of ten americans believe that this country's headed in the wrong direction. he is working with all of us to make sure that we put this country back on the right track. we are offering an agenda to this country to show how we can get this country back on top, to show this country how we can get jobs, show how we can fight poverty, rebuild our military, restore self-government and the constitution. and that is why we are just honored to have with us today our friend and our colleague who we believe is going to be the next vice president of united states, mike pence, join us today. our members were excited to have him. we feel the wind at our backs, and we're excited about getting this agenda and moving it into law. go to, and you can see just, in fact, what we have in store for solving this country's big problems with our partners. with that, i'd like to introduce mike pence. [applause] >> thank you, mr. speaker. thank you so much for this whole leadership team.
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it is a great privilege for me to be back among so many men and women who live out every day a dedication to this nation, it's truly inspiring. i'm grateful for the hospitality. it was, for me, an emotional return to a group of men and women that i served with for 12 years and have so admired. i know donald trump and i are so grateful for the support that we're receiving from this -- not just this leadership team, but members all across this country who are rallying to the cause to make america great again and to be at the house republican conference today was a great privilege. particularly want to express my appreciation to speaker paul ryan. his development of the better way agenda so aligns with donald trump's vision to make america great again that the american
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people should be confident that 56 days from now we can elect a president and reelect majorities in the house and senate that will be ready on day one to restore american strength at home and abroad. the house commitment to and plans to rebuild our military, reduce taxes, end the war on american energy, roll back job-killing regulations, repeal obamacare and support the kinds of policies that will result in a stronger and more prosperous america represents an extraordinary start. on the important work that we have to do as a country. seven and a half years of the leadership of barack obama and hillary clinton during her years as secretary of state have weakened america's place in the world and stifled america's economy. and with the strong leadership that donald trump will bring to the white house with our strong
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partners in the house and in the senate, leaders and members of which i'll be meeting with today, we're very confident that we can bring real change in realtime to the american people. and i leave here today with a grateful heart to be among my friends and those men and women that i hope and pray we have the opportunity to work together to make this country great again. >> questions. >> sir, you're a man -- >> we don't do it that way. go ahead. >> would you like to amend your recent comment -- [inaudible] and do you agree some of your supporters -- [inaudible] >> let me say, first and foremost, i think millions of americans were shocked and saddened to see hillary clinton refer to people across this country as a basket of
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deplorables in a prepared speech before wealthy donors in new york city on friday night. she said that at the time half of the people supporting donald trump if i were irredeemable, were not american. and, frankly, i've never heard a major party candidate in the united states speak about the american people with such contempt. i mean, i'm out on the campaign trail every day. i'm campaigning with donald trump and for donald trump. and what hillary clinton apparently doesn't know is that the people that are supporting this campaign are hard working americans who come out to our rallies, come out to our town halls, who stop us in diners, who visit with us at meetings, at factories. they're people that work with their hands, they're people that run businesseses, they're veterans, members of the armed forces, they're law enforcement
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officer, moms and dads and farmers. i -- for hillary clinton to express such disdain for millions of americans, i think it's one more reason that disqualifies her to serve in the highest office in the land. anyone who has that low an opinion of the american people should never serve as president of united states of america. as i said this weekend and i'll say again, donald trump supporters are not a basket of anything. they are americans, and they deserve the respect of the democrat nominee for president of the united states. donald trump, his ambition is to be president of all the people of the united states of america. and as he said this weekend and we believe from our heart, even those who do not support us, even those who are critical of us or have strongly different views have our respect because they are americans, and we respect their right to their views. and it would be the highest honor of our life to serve them.
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now, with regard to your question, i would tell you i was, i was asked yesterday once again a question that i am, i continue to -- for all the world, i have no idea why this man keeps coming up. i mean, donald trump and i have denounced david duke repeatedly. we have said that we do not want his support, and we do not want the support of people who think like him. and yesterday i was, i was asked a question about that, and i repeated that again. and the simple fact is that i'm not in the name-calling business. my colleagues in the house of representatives know that i believe that civility is essential in a vibrant democracy, and it's just never been my practice. but i'm also not going to validate the language that hillary clinton used to describe the american people. i mean, look, millions of
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americans know -- and, frankly, you all know hillary clinton wasn't talking about that bad man. she was talking about people all across this country who are coming out in record numbers to stand by donald trump and to stand with him and his vision to make america great again. so we'll call on her again to apologize and retract her comments. i mean, the only thing she said so far is she was wrong about the math, i guess, that she's sorry she said half. >> yeah. >> the truth of the matter is her remarks were deeply insulting to sincere people all across this country who know we can do better, who know we can be stronger. and we call on hillary clinton and her campaign once again to fully retract those offensive statements and a apologize to the american people as she should. >> governor, do you have any -- [inaudible] whether it's david duke or others who hold views that are
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considered racist or misogynist or any of those, that they are attracted to your campaign and want to attach themselves to you? again today david duke talked about you specifically. are you concerned that there was something about the trump candidacy in these political times -- [inaudible] >> we live in a free country, and people of ill motives can associate themselves with politics. i would draw no more conclusion to that man's expressions of support than i would the fact of the father of a terrorist who killed 49 americans was seen at a hillary clinton rally cheering her on is and said he was there because she was good on national security. i mean, look, folks, there are two people on the ballot here. hillary clinton and donald trump. one of them is going to be president of the united states of america. and i would submit to you this is all a distraction. i get it. i understand why hillary clinton
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and her campaign want to change the subject after that peach on friday night. -- that speech on friday night. i mean, we all have recognized, you in the media have recognized this was a catastrophic insult to the american people. and it's so important that people around the country know this was a prepared speech. this is not the first time she called millions of americans a basket of deplorables. and i just, as i said, i think anyone that's got that low an opinion of the american people should never serve in the highest office in the land. >> [inaudible] >> yeah. governor pence -- [laughter] >> go ahead, mike. >> we hear your thoughts on the ncaa decision to -- [inaudible] some of the championship series out of north carolina over what's perceived as an anti-lgbt law? the nba has done something similar with the all-star game.
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>> well, i just heard about that this morning and wouldn't have the details to comment other than to say we -- the ncaa is based in indianapolis. we have a great relationship with the ncaa. and donald trump and i simply believe that these decisions are best made at the state level by the people and where disputes arise that they should be resolved in the courts. >> last question. >> governor pence? >> this guy right here. he was patient and he wasn't shouting out, so there you go. >> thank you. governor pence, speaker ryan has repeatedly and at times forcefully -- >> okay, somebody else. [laughter] thanks, man. [laughter] no good deed goes up punished. >> i'm sorry, i didn't hear the question. >> i didn't hear the question either. i could tell where you were going. >> speaker ryan has repeatedly and at times forcefully rebuked donald trump --
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[inaudible] i'm wondering if that's made it difficult for you as you've been reaching out to some republicans who are on the fence and -- [inaudible] >> my and donald trump's respect and appreciation for speaker paul ryan is boundless. look, you're going to have in a majority party, you're going to occasionally have differences of opinion. but our goals are identical. i think what was so inspiring to me to be at the house republican conference today and in the meeting i had this morning with the speaker is how much consistency there is between donald trump's vision to rebuild our military, revive the american economy, uphold the rule of law and the agenda that house republicans have put forward in the better way. i really do believe we have a historic opportunity before us today with the enormous talent here in the house of representatives led by speaker paul ryan, with the energy and
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the vision of a president donald trump and a reelected republican senate to turn this country around and to turn it around very quickly. i mean, i said to the conference today this is the most dramatic choice in an election in my lifetime. this is not a choice between one candidate who will grow america this much and another candidate who will grow america this much. this literally is a choice between whether we're going to continue to go downhill to a weaker america at home and abroad, whether we're going to continue to walk away from the the constitutional liberties enshrined in the interpretation of those by our supreme court, whether we're going to walk away from the highest standards of integrity in the highest office of the land or whether we're going to plant our feet and start to march back uphill toward greater freedom, greater american strength and greater prosperity. house republicans, senate republicans are deeply committed to marching back up that hill. and be when we elect donald trump as the next president of
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the united states of america, they will have a team and a partner in the white house to march back up to a stronger and greater america. so thank you all very much. >> thank you. appreciate it. [inaudible conversations] >> continuing live coverage here on c-span2, we are expecting a state department briefing at the top of the hour, 1 p.m. eastern. we'll be going live to that. the briefing will be on u.s. priorities for the upcoming meeting of the united nations.
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until then, here's a portion of today's "washington journal." >> host: first of two p januaries joining us this morning, representative keith rothfus, he is from pennsylvania, republican. serves johnstown, pittsburgh and beaver, pennsylvania. good morning to you. >> guest: good morning. it's the first of two notre dame i went to law school, and brendan went to undergrad. >> host: thank you for pointing that out. today republicans in the house will hear from mike pence. what's that meeting about? >> guest: we're going to get an update from him what he sees, the issues that he sees, the concerns we're hearing from our districts about where the state of the economy is and what we need to do to get to a much healthier place where people's incomes are going up and job opportunities are coming. >> host: is this also about building support for donald trump? >> guest: i think it could be. donald trump has addressed the conference before. i've seen mike come into myfo district in western pennsylvania campaigning for mr. trump, and so i think this is part of
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mike's task as the vice presidential candidate to get out there and sell the ticket. >> host: what would you like to hear about him, and what would you like to talk to him about as far as the campaign this year? >> guest: i got a chance to speak to mike a couple weeks ago when he was in pittsburgh and related to him the importance of the agenda we set forward in the house under the better way with our tax reform proposals, can defense proposals, anti-poverty, upward mobility initiatives and constitutional reworking, understanding that the legislative branch needs to have a much more prominent role in what's been going on in this town when we have delegated so much authority to they super-regulatory state that we have here in washington, d.c. that continues to churn out regulation after regulation, 600 major rules under this administration costing hundreds of billions of dollars to implement. >> host: you talk about the better way proposals, and in a recent op-ed you kind of described them, and you described them as a reason to vote for donald trump. can you just talk about -- >> guest: well, it's real
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simple. we have a painstakingly over the last year put together some of these proposals, and some of them have been kicked around for a couple congresses. for example, our health care reform legislation with dr. tom pryce, concrete proposals that speaker ryan says let's be thebe party of proposition, not just opposition, and understand that a donald trump would sign that legislation that we send him. a hillary clinton would veto that legislation. so if we're concerned about the status quo stuck at 1% economic growth, bumping a along the bottom as we have been for sevet years, we need a new direction x. that new direction is set forth in the better way agenda. the tax foundation, taking a look at our tax reform proposals and talking about the significant increase in gdp growth we'd see. more jobs, more money in people's pockets. >> host: so you wholeheartedlyly believe donald trump would embrace all these ideas.p >> guest: the raines act is a piece of legislation we've passed in three successive houses -- we're still waiting
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for the senate to take it up, and i think if we had leadership from the white house, it would help. but it's very simple. if any agency puts out ath regulation on this economy thatt costs $100 million for more to implement, bring it back to congress for an up or down vote. the people should have a say in this. we're supposed to have self-rule, self-government. we do that through the congress. we're a government of the people, by people and for the people. that's where it happens. donald trump would sign that legislation.that l hillary clinton would noteg because she's content that this bureaucracy is churning out the policy that she would prefer as opposed to what the american people would prefer. >> host: our guest, again, keith rothfus of pennsylvania, a republican from that state. if you want to talk to him andg ask him questions about the events at congress, issues that congress has to take up, the presidential campaign, 202-748-8000 for democrats, 8001 for republicans, and for independents, 202-748-8002. you can also post your thoughtso on twitter as well.
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mr. representative, by the end of the month congress or at least the federal government might run out of money. where do we stand as far as not making that happen? >> we're going back and forth trying to figure out what a continuing resolution would look like. it's unfortunate yet again we're at this point. i've been a critic of this process of continuing resolutions and omnibuses since i came to congress. i expressed frustration in 2010 of why is it that congress can't get its job done on time? september 30th is a date certain. we know that date is coming, we know government needs to be funded by then. when people back home know they have to pay their taxes, it's april 15th.l if you have to file an extension, you're at least filing a payment.ouil you can't go the local school board and say, you know, we're not ready on that first tuesday after labor day for school. we need a continuing resolution on summer so we can get ready. we know september 30th is we have a responsibility to pass 12 appropriations bills. i've been frustrated that we haven't done that in my time.
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the fact is that hasn't been done on time since 1994. this has been a bipartisan program. in fact, it's only been done on' time four times since 1977. this is a chronic problem, we need to address it. i introduced something called the congressional pay for performance act because my contention was if we didn't get our 12 bills out by the end ofid july and the senate didn't doco its counterpart by the end of july, stop paying us until we do. that way you'd have two months to reconcile differences between the house and the senate and get something to the president's desk by september 30th. yet here we are just a but weeks away, we need to fund the government, there's discussion of whether or not this should be a short-term that would go through december or a longer term going through march. that's a conversation we're having right now.s we are very concerned about the impacts on the defense budget right now. because under the continuing resolution, you would pretty much carry funding from the previous year. it gets a little detailed, a little inside baseball, but we are spending about $1
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$1,067,000,000,000 under the bipartisan act, it would go up to $3 billion differential. almost all of that going to defense. and we continue to hear from those in the defense department about concerns we have with respect to adequacy, readiness, etc. >> host: one of the sticking points are amendments about the funding of planned parenthood. should it be part of this process? >> guest: well, it's been very frustrating that harry reid in the senate would choose to make this an issue. the fact of the matter is we have $40 million going into health care, and the funding bill that we passed -- that passed the house and a conference committee between the house and the senate -- we're talking about a handful, a handful of planned parenthood clinics in puerto rico. the way the language is structured in the bill, we have money for research for vaccines, for spraying for mosquitoes, public health to be administered through certain entities withino
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puerto rico. you won't find the word planned parenthood in this legislation. yet harry reid has chosen to hold hostage, you know, work on vaccines and work on spraying so that he can throw yet more taxpayer dollars at planned parenthood which alreadyoo receives $500 million in taxpayer funding. it's just unconscionable that they would take that tack. >> host: calls lined up for you. we'll hear first, this is kathleen, chicago, illinois.en democrats' line. you're on with our guest. go ahead. >> caller: if you give me a couple seconds. i want to ask this gentleman here, you said some things thata sound reasonable a few minutes ago, but i want to ask you in general as a person, not as a democrat or republican, how can you stand behind somebody likel? donald trump who openly says that if iran or whoever would throw up a finger at the u.s. ship, he would start world war iii?
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how can you stand with a person that says if he can't get isis, he'll kill their women and their babies? how can you stand with a person that openly mocks somebody that's disabled? how can you stand with a person that you know yourself is not fit to be the president simply because he is who he is? now, he's talking about hillary clinton said his supporters are deplorable. i hated that she used that word. but look what all he's been saying from day one, getting ri of mexicans and calling them rapists and murderers. and he's -- and please let me say this: everybody says he's a bully and says he's strong, but i have seen three incidents, anc i kid you not, one when donald trump was on that podium and he thought somebody was going to jump up on that podium and attack him. the first thing that that man did, he turned around and looked like he was going to run off that stage, he was so scared.
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>> host: okay, caller, we'll leave it there and let our guest respond to you. >> guest: thank you for the call this morning. look, we have some serious problems going on in our country. we have an economy that is stuck in neutral. i've talked to constituents all the time who are very frustrated with the lack of opportunities, the lack of getting ahead with their own wages, the health care debacle that we've seen, insurance companies dropping out, people losing their health care plans, costs escalating, talking to people who work in the energy industry, particularly in the coal industry and how devastating the policies of this town have been, struggling small businesses. i recently heard from a small business in western pennsylvania who said congress has no idea how bad it is out here. we're looking at the better way agenda which will restore economic growth, healthyhi economic growth, lift incomes, make more opportunities available for people, get the right kind of health care reform we need. that's where we should be focusing.
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we can always, you know, focus on what one candidate said or another candidate said. we need to be focusing this election on policy, who's going to sign that policy. and do not forget congress has an oversight responsibility. and it's unfortunate that over the last 15 years we've seen a real hard partisanship set in in this oversight responsibility. i think of the benghazi committee and the way they were investigating the secretary of state and what happened in libyn and how it became trench warfare. you know, we have a bipartisan responsibility to oversee what's going on in the executive branch. i would fully expect that a republican congress, a republican house, a republican senate would conduct robust oversight over a president trump administration. you've already seen members of the republican party, you know, call donald trump out on some of what he's been saying. >> host: this is from minnesota, republican line. diane, good morning. >> caller: good morning. long time i haven't called in,
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but been watching everything, and first of all, i'd like to thank you republicans for hanging in there. hang in there, because we need to get you into office. and i'd like to say -- and please give me enough time -- i'd like to say something. i've been watching both of these candidates very close. and at first i wasn't for trump. now i am. was other direction, the -- because the other direction, the other candidate would, i don't care what anyone says when they call in. anyone with the size of the brain of a grain of salt would not vote for hillary clinton. that is not the example that i want for my children or my precious grandchildren. i do not own diamonds. my jewels are my grandchildren, and everyone who's listening better think of that. going, an'a
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different change. host: that is diane. guest: one of the things i have been thinking about a lot lately, and it comes out in the op-ed i did, we do have for decades, you have seen a diminishment in the authority of power of the legislative branch. people are struggling out there in the country. they are looking for leadership. leadership not happens not just at the white house but in the other branches. i think this is an opportunity. i think of president trump were
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in there you would see a much more robust legislative branch. he has said he would sign the reins act. people can actually have a voice. you will see some give and take, i believe with the trump administration. >> from florida, independent line, mike, your next, your next up. good morning. >> caller: i would like to know, your party is always putting the president down. he always has his bad policies about how the country is going in the wrong direction. can you tell me what your party has done since he's been an office to make life better for the average american? what are your policies? >> great question. that is exactly why we put together the better way agenda. putting in detail, what our healthcare reform would be, we are seeing the continuing fallout of the affordable care act and the damage it has brought for many, many people. look, some people have gotten
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health insurance through the healthcare act. it's important go back and see what caused everybody else's premium to skyrocket, why did so many people lose their plans when the president promised they wouldn't. why did people see increases in their premium when he promised they would go down by $2500. why are people losing access to their doctor? our healthcare reform plan, in a better way, is aimed at providing real healthcare reform i'm looking at legislative legislation that i've passed and we talk about the war on coal. there is a small subset of power plants that you something known as waste coal. this is coal that was mind decades ago by the steel industry. it was left on hillsides and
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scarring landscapes. unfortunately what the epa one size fits a regulation, the small number of plants that use that waste coal, those plants will close down resulting in the loss of 5200 jobs that will stop the environmental progress we've seen in cleaning up these piles. i passed legislation that said let's have a standardized plan, that's the kind of initiative we are looking for. responsible, untran, prudent legislation that lets the economy growing keeps people on the job. >> again keith is joining us, republican in pennsylvania and served the 12th district. the lines are open. they talk about a poll showing a
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streaking lead for hillary clinton and arise and donald trump support and the senate is in a dead heat. how do you think it will play out in pennsylvania as far as this november and you believe those numbers. >> guest: it's a very dynamic environment and i think people are really starting to focus in after labor day. of course for also paying attention to the steelers and the tremendous win in washington last night although i did not make the game, i was studying for this morning and some other things we are doing today. there is a lot of fluidity out there. i do know parts of my district people have waited in line for over an hour to get in line for mr. trump. there is a lot of interest. i think i would a lot of them going over the next few weeks that people look at where this country is headed. it's your hope that people really focus a lot on policy.
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nobody's talking about the debt and not a problem. this money has to get paid back and it gets paid back at higher interest rates. in ten years the interest on the debt will be $850 billion. now it's under 300 billion. in ten years will be 850 billion. that's more money than we will be spending on the budget and medicaid. we've got to get a handle on the spending problem. part of it though is economic growth. get back to four or 5% economic growth which we can do, it's interesting, there has been some talk in some of the elites that were not going to have growth again, were forever resigned to this anemic one or 2% growth. don't believe it for a minute. we sought to tremendous growth in the 60s and the 80s and the '90s and when we regulate and when we tax we direct
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government spending opposed to letting a more free economy making those rational choices, that's where we get in trouble. >> host: here surely on the democrat find. >> caller: good morning pedro. thank you for cspan. i just want to say one thing about the deplorable comment. i feel and she said that, there's a statement my grandma used to always say, birds of a feather flock together. what she means by that is with all the horrible things he has said like things about making kelly and saying the f word on tv and the disabled person, all those things are not presidential. just because he has now been calmed down doesn't mean he will
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be a great president. his bodying up with vladimir putin, vladimir vladimir putin in russia. are you serious? what is the matter with this man ? this is why it's so hard for those of us who are rational to understand why anyone can vote for this man, and one more thing, the things you said about congress, congress has done nothing. ever since president obama has been in they do nothing because they just want to make him look bad and it makes me sick. >> guest: if i can just respond to that, congress congress has done quite a bit, actually, we have prevented another $850 billion in deficit spending that this president wanted to have and later pelosi and he reread, we preserve tax cuts for 99% of the american people, we prevented the closure of one time obey and we continue to see
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terrorists being released from guantánamo bay going back to the field. there's been an opioid epidemic that's been addressed, we have passed infrastructure legislation, the first long-term highway bill in a very long time, we've done we've done legislation relative to our water infrastructure. again, you need to look, when a candidate says something, what's been the reaction of members of their own party? you've seen republicans stand up and criticize donald trump for what he has said. i have yet to hear a democrat criticize hillary clinton about families of benghazi victims. when she talked about it being a video, we know on september 11, 2012, hillary clinton sent an e-mail to her daughter and this
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is an al qaeda -like group that did the attack. the next day she is talking about it being a video, telling the families of these fallen americans that very thing. this is not the kind of leadership we need to have. i think this is an opportunity the selection to strengthen the voice of congress through initiatives and the better way agenda and you couple that with bipartisan oversight. when president obama came and gave a speech, the state of the union a couple years ago where he said he laid out his agenda. he said if congress doesn't act, i will in this unilateral taking action against the spread that's not how we operate. you saw a number of democrats stand and applaud that. you see one republicans stand
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and applaud that. we have three branches of the government and they're supposed to be healthy tension between the branches. this is what was designed to does diffuse power and regard liberty. >> host: we have a viewer from twitter who said what's the difference between legislative oversight and obstruction. >> guest: you go back to 2009 and it's an immediate firehouse where the president began talking about his initiative. >> happy tuesday and welcome to the state department. it is only tuesday regrettably. anyway, we wanted to start off today, as as everyone knows, many of you anticipate next week the world attention focuses on the un general assembly which begins this weekend in new york city. we thought it would be useful to have the secretary for international affairs, and talk a little bit about what our
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priorities are, what we expect the secretary to do with the caveat and we will certainly inform you as this takes shape also what the general priorities are for the week or two of the general assembly. without further ado,. >> good afternoon everyone, as mark said and i know you are all aware, we are are approaching high-level week of the un general assembly's 71st session. it is notable for many reasons but this year because of the fact it will be president obama's last un general assembly as well as the last for secretary. in keeping with the president's determination for the past eight years to use this diplomatic environment of maximum positive
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effect, this year will feature events and activities designed to advance multilateral objectives. you may recall last year's un general general assembly features activities at the u.s. participated in and resulted in new commitments to un peacekeeping that strengthened the range of allies and actions to counter isil and violent extremism that launched ambitious new development goals and significantly advanced the climate change negotiation. this year we are focusing on three priorities, humanitarian response, peace and security and countering terrorism and violent extremism.
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of course, the schedule is changing as we speak but i will talk about the key events that are ready confirmed. at present we expect the secretary to arrive in new york on saturday the 17th of september. on sunday the 18th, his first first official event will be to represent the united states at a meeting on the global de mining for columbia. this is to help columbia read itself of landmines by 202012. then they will discuss the impacts of technology and new media on social good initiatives around the world. on the morning of monday the 19th, the secretary is slated to hold a series of bilateral meetings and in the afternoon he will deliver remarks on behalf
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of the united states at the general assembly high-level on refugees and migrants. this event perceives and complements the president's leader summit on refugees which takes place the next day. on tuesday, 2020th of september, president obama will make his eighth and final speech to the general assembly. the secretary will be present and joined us -- the president. he will also join president obama on 20 september at september at the annual lunch hosted by secretary-general. that same afternoon the secretary will join the president for his leader summit on refugee which will be supported by the heads of state from canada, ethiopia, germany, sweden and mexico.
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we are all fully aware of the scope and refugee crisis. they respond not just to the headlines of yesterday and today but to the broader and enduring strains of the humanitarian system. we expect the summit will result in new sustained commitment to un humanitarian appeal, expanded refugee resettlement programs and pathways for admissions and new opportunities for refugees on their host communities to benefit from improved refugee access to education and legal employment. on the morning of september 21 the secretary will attend an event hosted by the general on the climate change agreement that was adopted by 200 countries in paris last december. the event comes on the heels of the united states and china formally joining the terrorist agreement on september 3 and is focused on encouraging other
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countries to do the same and bring the agreement into force by the end of this year. later that morning the secretary will attend a security council focused on syria that has been called by new zealand. in the afternoon, also on september 20, 21st rather, the secretary will attend the second 2016 u.s. africa business form which is cohosted by bloomberg flint the fees and the department of commerce and will focus on trade and investment opportunities on the african continent. on thursday, september 22, they will begin with the event on libya that the secretary will cohost with his italian counterpart. he will then give remarks at the u.s. in croatia cohosted meted up the equal partnership. it will celebrate the achievements of the partnership
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supports women's political participation. later the secretary will host a coalition to secure ambition which is focused on concrete action to advance the montréal protocol which since 1987 has helped protect the layer. that evening the secretary will host the annual transatlantic dinner for his eu counterparts, nato allies and other european partners. that brings us to friday september 23 in the morning the secretary will host a special session of the major economy forum on energy and climate where the dialogue will continue on concrete initiatives and joint ventures that provide alternatives and cut greenhouse gases. that gives you a glimpse of how this year's schedule is shaping
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up and we will keep you updated as additional events are confirmed. >> thank you. just a few questions. >> i just have a logistical question. is there no bylaws confirmed? >> correct. not a single one that we can confirm at this time. >> i just find that unbelievable [inaudible] are they calling any bilateral meetings. [inaudible] >> there are none that we can confirm at this time and as meetings get put on or things solidify, we will keep you updated. we can't say at this point because we don't have any confirmation about how those meetings are shaping up but if you look at the schedule of past, i think you see there are generally meetings on this topic and so we will keep you updated as things get confirmed. >> the india afghanistan u.s.
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pilot announced in delhi, any idea when that could take place? >> i don't have an idea at this time so when we get confirmation around that we will let you know [inaudible] >> i have any information about it today so we will come back to you. >> it's been announced it's the 21st. >> i think that's a target date but we don't have anything confirmed. >> would be safe safe to say that any interaction between the u.s. delegation and iran's delegation would take place on the sideline of activity? the fact that the nuclear deal has been implemented or is being implemented, it does not what u.s. around questions. [inaudible] >> at this stage we have nothing to say but possible meetings may be taking place between the secretary and his counterpart spread i want to make clear i am talking about things that have
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been confirmed for the schedule. although there have been potential announcements about other meetings that are taking place, of which there will be many, the focus on today is what the secretary has currently confirmed. >> in other words if there is any interaction whatsoever it wouldn't fall under this category it would be under the book -- under other diplomatic relations. >> you talked about, you mentioned about getting enough countries to sign up, can you tell me what role the u.s. is playing? are you helping them achieve that goal? what are you looking toward? >> i think the big thing to announce on that front was our own announcement with china on
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three september that we will be joining the agreement this year but in the meantime, the secretary and numerous other u.s. government officials are talking all the time to other counterparts in other governments to try to encourage other countries to sign up so hopefully the agreement will come into force this year and the aim of the meeting that the secretary-general will host is also to try to solidify that process and solidify getting to the number of countries that are needed for the agreement to enter into force and to encourage countries to do that. we are engaged in that activity as the united states as well. >> given the u.s. elections this year and the possibility that the next president may not want to be, are you worried that the un is trying to tie the hands of the next president or are you hoping to push this through before the election. >> we have stated we look forward to the agreement this year and that is the goal of the meeting that the secretary will be attending which will hopefully be to put some momentum behind that this year. >> one more question, the
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security council session on wednesday on syria, is that an opportunity for the secretary and russian foreign minister to provide an update on the efforts to try to bring some sort of calm back to that country? is this an opportunity to discuss perhaps some sort of effort to try to broker peace support? what's the frame for the meeting? >> i think it's too early to tell, i know you've heard a lot from the secretary yesterday from the podium about what's going on with the discussions with the russians and the agreement that was reached, and it's too early to preview at this point given that things are sort of fast-moving as to exactly how that will shape up. it is something that got put on the schedule last week in the secretary has confirmed he will attend and give him an opportunity at that point that we will hear from all the councilmembers including the united states and russia. >> we have to stop there, i apologize apologize. thank you very much.
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>> you can watch this briefing again on the website at we will be covering some speeches from the un general assembly on the cspan networks, the 71st session of the un general assembly opens this afternoon in new york city. the u.s. senate is in recess until 2:15 pm eastern. they are considering a water water project bill that would authorize funding for flood control and hurricane damage. it also provides funds to flint and other communities with lead in their drinking water. final vote is expected on that later this week. also later this week the senate may turn to a measure to keep the government operating starting october 1. funding runs out at the end of the month. we hope to hear from republican and democratic leaders before the senate returns.
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now for speeches from the senate floor this morning about the healthcare law. >> days before obama pick care pass the senate, the senior senator from new york predicted americans would come around soon on the unpopular bill the party was trying to force through. the reason people are negative is not the substance of the laid bill, but the fear that the opponents have laid out.he when those fears don't materialize and people see the good in the bills, the number is going to go up. today, years later, one need only read the headlines to see just how wrong that prediction was. one third of u.s. won't have a choice between obamacare plans in 2017. failu another headline, frustration frustration mounts over obamacare co-op failures. and another headline, insurers c
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propose health insurance rates. and as my constituents read just recently, get ready ready to pay more for health insurance in kentucky.ti these headlines tell a story of a failing partisan law and its continuing assault on the middle class. off when republicans learned our potential consequences like these, democrats waved off ouran concerns and forced the law through anyway with the middle class forced to bear the consequences ever since.loor to it's time democrats start listening. that's why last week senators came to the floor to show the share the heartbreaking stories of how obamacare continues to hurt constituents.nia. they called obamacare nothing short of devastating in her home state of west virginia. working families she said are being faced with skyrocketing premiums, co-pays and
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deductibles. they warned that the numbers do not lie in georgia. obama care, he said, is forcing insurance carriers to leave the market, eliminating competition and choice all while placing the burden of higher cost on working taxpayers in this country. senator mccain explained how americans have been hit by broken promise after broken promise and met with higher cost do two fewer choices and poory quality of care. they noted that his home state of arizona has become ground zero for the collapse of obamacare. just last month the obama administration told him not to worry about rising cost because they could shop around to find the best plan. they could save money on health insurance. i many americans in places like ohio are going to be severely restricted when it comes to
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choosing an insurer next year. as the state's director of insurance pointed out.9 in fact, 19 of ohio's counties are set to have just a single insurer and another 28 counties will have just two options. restrictions like these mean families could lose access to doctors they know and trust, face higher higher premiums and more out-of-pocket expenses. they could have fewer options to shop around for more affordable coverage or plans to meet their families changing needs. one summarized it as a pinch facing so many across the country. they find you if you don't have insurance and then they take your options away. that's what she said after learning she would lose her nehi. her frustration is one felt across ohio and across america. more than 2 million people could
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be forced to find a new plan next year. the majority of the nation's counties are expected to have only one or two insurers in the exchange. eight entire states are expected have only a single insurer in the exchange to choose that's because just last night we learned that connecticut wilg likely become the latest date with only a single insurer on the exchange next year. we learned something else last night as well. one of the few remaining obamacare co-ops will not offer plans in new jersey next year. this is part of a broader trend we have seen across the country. with obamacare co-op shuttering and forcing americans to find new coverage as a result. just look at what will happen in new hampshire. the co-op was in the words of new hampshire public radio, the exact type of business that was post to make the individual insurance market more competitive. the co-op recently announced it would close down operations in
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the state anyway. that is forcing thousands to find another plan and forcing taxpayers to foot the bill. here's what one new hampshire editorial had to say after the announcement. premi the entire obamacare scheme was set up on faulty premises. you can't force people to buy health insurance they don't want. subsidized mediocre insurance ad plan, people can afford and still claim the hold on rising medical expenses. the program is destroying itself by collapsing co-ops and growing insurers aren't the only sign that obamacare is destroying itself. just look at my home state of kentucky where premiums could rise by distressing rates, sometimes as high as 47%. l it's no wonder my office continues to hear from people who are desperate for reliefho from this law. family's health care costs will
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consume nearly one fifth of their budget this year. this healthcare law has been far from affordable for my family she said. every year we research for the least expensive coverage we can find. nevertheless our premiums continue to skyrocket. our out-of-pocket expenses have greatly increased as well. no we didn't have to junk insurance before obamacare, butw i'm rather certain what we have family now is junk insurance. i wish someone would explain to us how hard-working middle-clasa family, paying this much for health insurance became a loser under obamacare. here's another letter from a lexington father of three and small businessman who has provided insurance to his employees at no cost for decades because he said it's the rightwi thing to do.
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now he worries how he will be able to afford that next year with a small business facing substantial increases when it comes to healthcare expenses. here's what he said at these rates we will likely be forced to consider alternatives including forgoing all insurance altogether or pushing some of the costs onto our employees employees. this is thanks to the affordable care act. these are the realities for middle-class americans across our country. democrats can't deny it. they can say it's a messaging problem or they can pretend obamacare has been terrific for the country as the democratic leader tried to say last week or they can accept that in many years after obamacare's passage the opposite of the prediction of senator schumer is proving true. it's anything but terrific. the reason americans are negative about obamacare is precisely because of its
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substance. unfortunately their fears have materialized. obamacare is shrinking choices and higher cost present a stark contradiction to what was promised. democrats gave us plenty of soaring oratory back in 2012. we are finding the sleepless o night, unpaid bills and broken promises are actually becoming the hallmark of this partisan law. it is time for democrats to stop denying reality, stop ignoringol the concerns of our country and stop pretending that obamacare failures can be solved by doubling down on obamacare with a government run plan. it's time for democrats to finally work with us to build a bridge, away from obamacare and toward real care for the countrf because as one kentucky op-ed asks, if the aca is failing so
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completely and delivering on its own promises, why keep it? why throw good money after bad.o >> the first thing i wanted to say is this, before coming to the senate, before i came to the house, i was a trial lawyer. i tried over 100 cases to jurieu in some of those cases were very difficult. during the time that we were there, in court with the opponent attorney, it was very hard. i think back to those days, never after a case was completed
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were there any hard feelings between me and my adversaryha during the trial. the reason i mention that today is i was thinking of my timee here the last few years. i've been in the senate long time. some of them have been here long time but not as long as i have. this leader has had a distinguished career prior to coming here. he was a member of the texas supreme court, he was known for being the lawyer that he is pretty. i want to say to him, he's here on the floor today, we've had our differences, we speak about them often. yesterday i criticized him for something i thought he had done that was wrong, not in good keeping with the standards of the senate, but i want everyone to know that my criticism of the
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senior senator from texas is not based on anything dealing with his character, his integrity. i'm going to continue criticizing him and others whoes are not living up to their responsibilities as a member of the united states senate. i just want the record spreadred because my attention the last several months has been directed toward the senator from texas print i want him to know and i appreciate him being on the floor today, that i look back with pride which might not be the right word but my satisfaction in the courtroom of the difficult cases i had. when it was all over with the two attorneys, it was over with and there was no hard feelings and we would move on to our next client. i hope hope the senator from
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texas accepts my restatement here in the manner that it was offered. mr. president, on other matters, the republican leader loves to come to the floor once or twice a week to talk about how bad obamacare is. what i say to him, his tax on obamacare does not take away from the fact that there are 20 million people that have health insurance today that didn't have six years ago. came the senator from california camw as the speech was given by the it's me, remind him what's going on in california. we love obamacare. it's working wonderfully. millions of people in california have health insurance that didn't have it before. she relied to me that in those states for the republican governors have agreed to do medicaid, it's great. in fact, where states have
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expanded into medicaid the rates are virtually 10% lower than other states. g let's look at nevada. we have a conservative republican governor. accept i have learned to accept the fact that he is doing a good job in spite of the fact that in running for governor, he beat my son. he is a good person, he's doingt a good job and as governor of the state of nevada and he stepped aside and was not worried about the criticism he would receive by helping the people in the state of nevada and he has medicaid in the state of nevada. the rates are seven or 8% lower
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than had he not done this. i republican friend complaints about the few choices in obamacare marketplaces. that takes a lot of. [inaudible] to do that. before obama care, people had no choice or the choice was either paying a lot or a whole lot or not doing anything. many people just skipped insurance. they were willing to take their chances. the now, people can go to the marketplace and they have lots of choices. that's why there are 20 million more people that have health insurance that didn't have it before. there are many examples. pre-existing conditions, think about that.ct prior to obamacare, if you had a child who was born with a birth defect of some kind, you you had a child that developed diabetes
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or you are an adult that had a car accident or woman, that was a pre-existing condition. you had to pay more for your health, if you could get some. good everyone seems to ignore the good that has come from obamacare. 85% of the people in the marketplace get financial assistance on buying their coverage. certain people are paying an average of $175 a month for their insurance. mr. president, obamacare is a signature issue of the obama administration. as he announced yesterday, he is very happy with what obamacare has done for the american people it can be made better so easily if we would have a little bit of cooperation from the republicans.
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a little bit. we are going to continue wor focusing on making sure people understand how well it has worked. mr. president, last evening at 4:00 o'clock or thereabouts, i had to go to the white house and visit with the president, senator mcconnell, speaker ryan and leader pelosi. we met for about one hour 15 it was a good meeting. lot we had to discuss a number of issues and we can't talk about them all today, but there was a discussion about a path forward funded government to prevent the shutdown, in spite of what thein wall street journal said today. they said in an editorial that the republicans should just close the government again. i don't think there are many
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republicans that agree with the wall street journal editorial. there is reason for some very cautious optimism about our meeting last night. we are going to proceed carefully. i know the republican party will do the same. we've been down this road with republicans before and this talk is just that a lot of times. we have been optimistic in thesa passed to see them live up to their end of the agreement. there are number of problems that must be addressed. we have to stop ignoring the problems we see. there hasn't been a problem since last february. we've done nothing to get these people some relief. they need it. we thought mr. president, it was just a problem with women or
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pregnant women. it has gotten so much serious than that. it's plenty serious. now they are looking at it affecting people's eyes and vision and impairment and blindness in men and women, we have to get something done with the zika virus. we thought we had it done here but the work done.ha [inaudible] billion we had a bill. it wasn't everything we wanted, it certainly wasn't what the president wanted, $1.1 billion we sent it to the house. g we don't need to go through the gymnastics they went through to throw a big monkeywrench into the good work we've done over here by passing with 89 bipartisan votes. b
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so last week there were 17000 americans affected with zika. now the total by the cdc, thereg are now 19000. that's a 13% increase in seven days. each day it's only going to get worse. we need to treat the zika virus like the genuine tough crisis it is, not a bargain chip republicans can use to attack plan parenthood, attacked the confederate flag and cutec spending by half $1 billion and other such things they stuck in the bill when it came back to the house. we want to work with republicans but we will flatly reject any attempt that undermines someone's health.s once we've taken care of zika we must then address issues dealing with continuing resolution, the
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environmental protection agency we and pesticide spraying. we need to navigate senator cruise attempt to slow down the cr. this is what we have come to expect from my friend, the junior senator from texas. whenever they haven't deadline they tried to obstruct government funding bills. we have our work cut out for us. i'm cautiously optimistic the senate will fund zika and cr. i hope we can do it quickly but it cannot happen if we don't work together. i yield the floor. >> under the previous order, the leadership time is reserved.
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under the previous order the senate will resume f2848 which the 48 which the court will report. >> calendar number 523 is 2848. the bill to provide for the conservation and water related resources and so forth and for other purposes. >> mr. president, the assistant republican leader. >> mr. president, while the democratic leader is still onrl the floor, let me express my gratitude to him for his remarks earlier. it is true that for better or for worse, we have both bared the verdant of legal training and experience in courtrooms where we learned that adversaries don't necessarily have to be enemies. to disassociate the arguments we are making from many personal animosity, which i think is a very healthy and constructive thing to do, it always remembers the excerpt from the taming of the shrew where one of the
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speakers said do as adversaries in the law, strive mightily but eat and drink as friends. i think that kind of civility ib an important ammunition for all of us, one that maybe we don't always live up to, but one that i think we should continue to strive to emulate. let me just say to the democratic leader, i appreciate his comments and perhaps we can all do a little bit better in that category. big as he also pointed out, we do have some very big disagreements and it seems like each day is likely to bring more news about the awful side effects of president obama's signature health care legislation, obamacare care as it's come to be called. the truth is, the implementation and the reality of obamacare has
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been nothing short of a disaster for many of the people that i represent in texas, but it's not limited to the 27 million people were so who live in texas, it really is the problem that has been visited on many people as the majority leader commented earlier with some of the statements he made with regard to its implementation and various other states. unfortunately, when congress and washington make a mistake, it's the american people that have to pay the price and it seems like the consequences of obamacare are only getting worse. i think it's worth remembering, i certainly remember on christmas eve in 2009, at seven am in the morning when thevo senate passed the obamacare legislation with 60 democrats voting in favor of it and all republicans voting against it. i think that was the beginning of the failure of obamacare to
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because what our democratic friends, including the presideny failed to learn is that anytime signature legislation that affects one sixth of the economy and every american in this country, anytime we pass a law like that in the absence of some political consensus where each side get something and gives up something and build consensus then that law is simply not going to be sustainable. beyond the policy of problems that the law has manifested, i still remember like it wasol yesterday, the president said if you like your doctor you canp keep your doctor. he said if you like your policy, you can keep your policy. he said the family of four, the average family of four, would save $202,000 on their health care costs.
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none of that has proven to be true. in fact, just the opposite is true. unfortunately it's part of the broken promises. it was sold under false senate, pretenses. back in my old job before i came to the senate we had a consumer protection that sued people who committed consumer fraud. they represented one thing to consumers and delivered another. we sued them for consumer fraud. unfortunately the american people can't sue the federal government for consumer fraud or else they would have a pretty good case. i just want to point out a few
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instances of how obamacare has proven to be such a disaster for the folks i represent in texas. like many people under the c so-called affordable care act which really should be called the on affordable care act, many of my constituents in texas are he many remember the campaign that the president rolled out to the american people. he promised better coverage, more choices, lower prices. on the one thing that you would think healthcare reform would deliver, obamacare has been a complete failure and that has been lower-cost for consumers. in fact, because of the mandates in a obamacare, things like guaranteed issue, because of the way in which it was structured, it was bound to cost more money, not less money. how in the world are you going
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to get more people covered by cn the charging more than they currently pay for their healthcare. you're not less you're going to come in the back door and you taxpayer subsidies to sort of cushion the blow, but then many people are finding obamacare simply unaffordable or maybe they can get coverage but they find out they have a $5000 deductible so when they go to the hospital or the doctor, basically while they may think they have coverage, they basically are self-insured. unfortunately, my constituents have learned that obamacare has simply failed to deliver and many people in my state are suffering. over the past two months it seems like every week i read another headline in a texas newspaper about the way it's hurting my constituents. i brought a few of those with me today. first of all, here's a headline
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in the san antonio express news. obamacare is hitting texas hard as insurers propose steep rate increases. now you might say, why are you upset with obamacare when it's the insurance companies that are raising rates. the reason the insurance companies are raising rates isto because people aren't signing up for obamacare if they can avoid it and less they happen to be older and subject to more illnesses, which means the cost goes up more for those that are buying those policies. the article talks about how insurance companies are losing hundreds of millions of dollars under obamacare and again, why would we care about insurance companies losing hundreds of millions of dollars? well as we found out, many of them simply t can't sustain themselves in the states so they are leaving. the majority leader talked about
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that a moment ago. just to make obamacare viable, many of them were raising premiums by as much as 60% next year. that's just to stay in businesse 60%. unfortunately texas is not unique. other states like new york and illinois are looking at double-digit premium increases in 2017 as well. h that's because under the signature health care law, insurers are forced to pass law to customers. if they can't do it the only other choice is to leave, leaving consumers with fewer choices and maybe only one choice in the state. that happens when the government , when the masters of the universe and washington d.c. think they know better than the market. it's basic economics. the bad headlines don't stop there. here is one from the office of
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american-statesman. thousands affected in texas as edna rolled back obamacare plans that loan has more than 80000 customers in texas. it's one of the biggest healthcare providers in the new country and they're leaving means that thousands of people will have to find a new health care plan. so much for if you like what you have you can keep it. assuming they even like the plan which obviously is more expensive than what many people were paying before obamacare pass. it's not just my constituents in texas who are hurting, starting next year they will offer exchange plans in only four states down from the current 15. consumers will have even fewer choices starting next year. that wasn't the only company to
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leave the this is a headline from the waco tribune herald, one of our premier hospitals in central texas, the scott and white health plan is leaving obamacare according to the article, more than 44000 texas texans will have to find another insurance, plan. because of the extra cost burdening these companies, they simply can't afford to offer coverage and they have no alternative but to pack up and leave. finally, mr. president, here's a headline from the tribune, health insurers exit spell trouble for obamacare in texas.,
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in this story they report oscar health insurance also announced it would withdraw from texas exchanges in the dallas-fort worth area. that is one of the most populous parts of the state. this is absolutely unacceptable. with so many insurance companies pulling out of texas, texas will have less healthcare options plain and simple. i'm beginning to wonder if the conspiracy theories that we heard early on about obamacare was built to fail because really what they wanted was a single pair government run system and this was just up predicate or preload to that because it could not work as structured. well, you can draw your own
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conclusions but the fact is, consumers will have less choice and their coverage will come at a higher price. according to one estimate, 6060 counties out of our 254 counties in texas would just have one healthcare option in 2017. unless other insurance companies decide to enter the market which is highly unlikely given the way obamacare is structured. that means rices will continue to go up, and you wonder why people are frustrated innd america, why our politics seem so polarized and people seem so angry at what's happening in washington. at a time when their wages have remained flat because of this a administration's economic policies and over regulation being a large part of it, the cost for consumers continues to go up. that means people's real disposable income is going down and they're not happy about it
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and they shouldn't be. it looks like many areas in they populated areas are affected but the role areas are affected as well. they will be disproportionately hurt. company after company is leaving the exchanges in texas because obamacare simply won't work as structured. the end of it can't deliver on its promises at the end of the day hard-working texas families have to pay for the partisan policies of this administration and our democratic. [inaudible]
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i remember being at a program where james baker the third, who obviously served in the reagan administration, former secretary of health and human services has served in the clinton administration or the carter administration. s they made the commonsense observation that anytime you do something as big, pass legislation as big as obamacare, it is bound to fail because you can't expect people who oppose legislation from the very t beginning to say let me try to rescue you from a bad decision and a first-place and when they were essentially frozen out of the process.he way i when social security became law,
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consensus was reached and that's the way it should be done. unfortunately my constituents are paying the price for a bad decision made in 2009 and 2010 to make obamacare a purely partisan piece of legislation. i get letters from my constituents all the time who liked their insurance before it was canceled because of obamacare. they liked their doctor who they could see under their existing healthcare policy and they even liked the price they were paying for it. it was affordable before the mandates of obamacare. one by one, they lost their the law of the land. i've had some of my constituents tell me they feel terrorized by obamacare, strong words.
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others have told me bluntly they need relief from it, please, help us. we are drowning in higher coston and fewer choices and we don't like it. the bottom line is for all of the purported benefits that the democratic leader talks about, more people on medicaid, more people with some kind of coverage, we know that a hugend majority of people feel like they got a raw deal and we knew it would be that way from the beginning and that's the reason many people including myself opposed that's also the reason why just this year senate republicans passed a bill under the budget reconciliation project to repeal obamacare because we feel the american people deserve better. not surprisingly president obama
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vetoed it. se what we demonstrated is the political support here in the senate working with the house, hopefully under the next to president we can build a healthcare system that the american people can afford and gives them the choices that they want. unfortunately, obamacare did not deliver on its promises. we have our work cut out for usa in 2017. we demonstrated there is enough there to repeal obamacare. all we need now is a president who will sign it. we work together to find a more affordable alternative that gives people what they want andg what they deserve. i yield the floor. >> the assistant democratic leader. >> mr. president, would both
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republican majority leader and whip come to the floor to address one issue that's prettys important to them and clearly is the focus of their attention. the issue today is the affordable care act which was passed by the senate six years ago in the house as well. what i've missed in most of the debate, in fact what i missed in all of the debate from the republican side is their proposal, their alternative. they don't have one. now what they want to argue is that we need to go back to the good old days. the good old days of health insurance before the affordable care act. you heard the senator from kentucky and the senator from tennessee talk about getting back to the good old days and getting rid of the mandates, the mandates in affordable care act. what were those mandates in the
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affordable care act?il years one, it said that if you or any member of your family had a pre-existing condition you could not be denied health insurance. has any family across america have someone with a pre-existing condition? turns out quite a few. my family, many others. 12,929,000,000 americans out oft 350 have a pre-existing condition and their family. what does that mean in the good old days before the affordable care act which the republicans want to return to. it meant that health insurance companies would just say no, were not going to cover you. you have a child who survived cancer. you have a wife who is a diabetic. no health insurance for you. those were the good old days the
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republicans would like to return to but 129 americans it means either no insurance or unaffordable insurance to go back to the republican good old days under health insurance. there was also a provision, another mandate in the affordable care act that said you cannot discriminate against women when it comes to health insurance. why would health insurance h companies tried to more money for women than men? well women are made differently, have different health needs but why should they be discriminatee discriminated against when it comes to the cost of health insurance. one of the mandate said you treat women and men equally when it comes to the payment of premiums. the good old days you could discriminate against women. there have been 157 million american women who pay a higher premium for the same health insurance as a man. the good old days which the senate republicans would like to return to an health insurance would go back to discrimination against women.
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there was another mandate. the mandate said if you are a family that had a son or daughter and he wanted to keep them on your family health insurance until they reached the it w age of 26, the insurance companies had to give you that option. it was mandated. in the good old days which the return to, there was no requirement that you be allowed to continue to cover your son or daughter until age 26. what difference to them a? mark i remember when my daughter was going to college, graduated and i called her and said jennifer, do you have health insurance? oh, i don't need that. i feel fine. no parent wants to hear that. you never want to hear what'swoo what tomorrow's accident or tomorrow's diagnosis is going to bring.
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one of the mandates is thee mandate that family health insurance cover your children up to age 26 until they are graduated from school and looking for a job and maybe working part-time. they want to go back to the good old days when you can tell a family know, your son or daughter cannot stay under your health insurance plan. there was another provision. there was a senator who sat right back there from minnesotat he was an extraordinary senator who died in a plane crash, you probably probably remember. over on that side of the aisle, a senator from new mexico, two polar opposites but they had one thing in common, both of them had members of families with mental illness. the two of them came together, paul and pete and said every
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health insurance plan in america should cover mental health counseling and care. health a mandate. mental health counseling and care. those two senators from the opposite poles in politics new together that mental illness is in fact an illness that can be treated. health insurance plans didn't cover it. they didn't want to cover it. illness with included in the affordable care act said yes you will cover mental health illness and mental health counseling. you just listen to the senator from texas saying we need to do away with mandates, mandates that cover mental health illness. there's something else that included. most of us didn't notice. it doesn't just say mental health illness, it says mental health illness and substance
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many fam what i am finding in illinois and across the country because of the opioid and heroin epidemic is that many families get down on their knees and thank goodness that their health insurance now gives their son or daughter facing the addiction of opioid or heroine health insurance coverage for treatment. another mandate, another mandate in the affordable care act which senators from texas and kentucky believe should be gone. that isn't all. there's also a mandate in the affordable care act that we do something to help senioror citizens pay for their prescription drugs under the plan devised by the republican there was something called the doughnut hole where seniors could find themselves, after a few months each year going intoe their savings accounts for thousands of dollars to pay for their pharmaceuticals and drugs. we put a mandate in the
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affordable care act to start closing that and protect seniors. the republicans would have us go back to the good old days where seniors were depleting their savings because of the cost of life-saving drugs. when you go through the long list of things that are mandated in the affordable care act, you have to ask my republican critics, which one of these mandates would you get rid of. they suggest we should get rid of all of these and go back to the good old days of health insurance. it's true the cost is going up.w my family knows it and we are under an insurance exchange from the affordable care act. other others know it as. to suggest this is brand-new is to ignore the obvious.ab
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if you look back in time but noh that far back in time, you find some interesting headlines. they bring headlines from texas from the past few months. in 2005, five years before the affordable care act was logged, there was a los angeles times headline that read rising premiums threaten jobs and health coverage. it shouldn't come as a surprise for those of us who have any memory. the cost was going up every single year. 2000 year before the care act became law. healthcare cost rise twice as much as inflation. 2008, two years before we passed the law, rising health cost cut into wages.h care costs were it's naïve and just plain wrong to suggest --
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>> they are finishing talks and we will hear from senate leaders before we reconvene live coverage of the senate here on c-span2. good afternoon everyone, i think it's you know we had governor pens over at the governor toil committee and had a good meeting with him, rather extensive question-and-answer session with our members and i think i can safely say that everybody felt good about the governor pence selection when it was announced and felt even better about it today. it was a very good meeting. with regard to the senate floor we are going to trap -- try to
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wrap up the w rda plan tomorrow. nothing has been closed out yet but we hope to get to closure sometime very soon and move forward with that bill. last night the senate said to the president, the justice against sponsored terrorism act which passed by unanimous consent in the senate, it passed passed by a unanimous vote of the house of representatives last friday. this is a straightforward amendment to the foreign sovereign immunity act that would allow for the families who lost loved ones, for those injured in the 911 attacks to seek recourse in a court of law for their losses. the presidents previously said that he intends to veto this legislation. i hope he will reef think that. rather than leave the families
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dangling here for ten days, i hope if he does veto, he doesn't promptly so the senate and house can take up a vote on the veto override which i am confident we will do. i would hope the president would keep those families first and foremost in his mind in deciding what he does now with this legislation. >> one of the issues that i think people care the most about in this country particularly as we head into an election season is national security. record number of americans, 54% in a survey said they believe that we are less safe now than we were before 911. if you look at the last eight years of the obama presidency, it's no wonder. presidents early withdrawal from iraq has paved the way for isis. if you look at the red line, it
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wasn't enforced in syria and has led to instability in the middle east and the greatest humanitarian crisis of our time and his flawed deal with iran has paved the way for iran to acquire nuclear weapons. the president talks a good game but when it comes to his foreign-policy, they really have been toothless. we republicans in the united states senate are looking forward to working with the president that is interested in restoring american leadership in the world and strengthening america's security. >> national security is a key issue. people want the united states to be the most powerful and respected nation on earth. this is a time where the world continues to be a very dangerous place with dangerous people and deadly weapons. also around the world we see folks who consider themselves macho men leading countries. you see it in syria and russia


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