tv Politics Public Policy Today CSPAN January 12, 2015 3:00pm-5:01pm EST
convinced our colleagues and convinced our friends and moved forward with a positive solution. so positive that the romney/ryan team in '12 on that proposal won the senior vote in this country. what that says to us is we ought to make certain we find those other yashz where we can begin to normalize the debate about how you truly solve the remarkable challenges that we have. we believe it's important to save and strengthen and secure medicare medicaid and social security. save strengthen and secure. the other side apparently believes they're all right with them going broke because every one of them programs are going broke. every single one. social security disability insurance program runs out of all of its monies next year. this isn't in 2080. this is next year. the urgency is huge. so, we believe that it's important to put in place the programs and the policies the
positive solutions to save and strengthen and secure medicare, medicaid and social security. and i can't wait to have our new members on the budget committee sink their teeth into these wonderful issues that are so important to solve if we're going to get our fiscal house in order and create an economy that will thrive and grow. third, i think that we have on the conservative side, we have either ignored or put on the back burner -- >> come back in, everyone grab their seats. we'll begin our next session. we are excited to have congressman jeff duncan talk about his xpand act and the broader topic of energy across the country. i know senator demint is particularly excited the south carolinaen on stage. i think you all know that jeff
duncan has been a consistent conservative voice since coming to washington in 2010. that really, really important year of 2010. that class was really huge because it was a tea party surge sent here to washington to reform washington. and we'll hear later this afternoon from members of the class of 2014, which i think has a lot of similarities to your class of 2010. we'll talk about some lessons they may have learned from this last election. but since coming here in 2010 he's led on many tough policy fights that conservatives have been pushing. he's consistently at the top of the heritage action score card. he's latched onto the energy issue now and has put together what we think is the best most comprehensive energy reform bills out there in the expand act. when we talk about opportunity for all and favoritism to nonnone, we need to understand in the energy field, reform doesn't mean picking winners and losers based on the side of an
organization's lobbies budget. the mark of real reform is if it creates an even playing field by removing special interest tax subsidies, breaking down own russ federal regular laces, opening up access to energy exploration across the country and streamlining, permits and licensee processes. mr. duncan's bill does all this and more. we're pleased to have him. please we willjoin me in welcoming him to the podium. >> well, thank you. thanks for having me today. i literally just got off an airplane and ran through the terminal to get in the car to come here. it's always great to be among fellow conservatives. i think about energy i think about opportunity and i think about the gop, the grand old party really needs to reinvent
itself the grand opportunity party. especially when it comes to energy. i'm here to discuss why i'm so optimistic for energy and opportunity in this country. bear with me just a second. like i said, i literally just got off an airplane. it takes a moment to get the thought processes going. while do i that, i wanted to share a couple of articles that were on market watch this morning. one of which was oil above $100 never again, saudi prince said today. the second article, and you can read these at your leisure, oil slump could end up in $2 trillion in investments, according to goldman. two insightful articles that are really timed with this. energy is a new frontier. it's something that we need to focus more on. if you think of where we are with global energy with regard to energy, we're really seeing levels of energy prices no one anticipated ever to happen
again. oil below $100 a barrel. oil below $50 a barrel. and gasoline prices in south carolina, $1.65 a gallon, $1.85 a gallon. diesel fuel around $3.20 a gallon. i wish it would come down a little less for diesel fuel. but what does that mean? what does that mean as we focus on the things i've been talking about for four years and that's expanded energy here in this country. what can we do to unleash and unbridle all that entrepreneurship in america with regard to the energy sector. if you think about energy, it really touches on every state, every congressional district and every american. i mentioned a second ago the price of a gallon of gasoline now. i said in november i was speaking to a group in south carolina, i said for every 50-cent reduction in the price of a gallon of gasoline means
about a $10 savings from moms and dads for 20-gallon fill up. we're well below 50% reduction. we're well below $1. so, that's a $20 savings. some are realizing $25, $26 savings per fill-up. think about that what translates for moms and dads in this country. how many times do you fill up in a week? two, three, four times? $100 a week savings for moms and dads? that's real money that could be spent in the economy. that's real money that could be spent entertaining real money spent purchasing the goods and services the economy has. that's real money that could be put in the bank for savings to replenish a lot of the lost savings after 008. when i think about the energy touches every congressional district, every state and every american i think about the uranium that's mined in wyoming being used in a nuclear power plant in south carolina.
i think about the electricity that power plant provides to say, a michelin tire company in anderson south carolina, that produces these mega large construction tires that go on the big dump trucks that are being used and the oil sands of canada. it touches everybody. thriving energy sector means more money for businesses and individuals to spend -- and we talk about the trickle down. when you think about energy and you think about the energy jobs and i think about jobs energy and the founding fathers. that's an acronym that spells j.e.f.f. and i really like that. jobs, question talk all day about energy jobs. let me touch base on that. jobs. you look at louisiana north carolina, oklahoma, you look at the states that are always producing energy and have those energy jobs they have very, very low unemployment. the article i mentioned from
market watch, i believe talked about finder's fees in north dakota for people that are doing menial jobs at burger king mcdonald's or whatnot. i think about the energy jobs and i ask you to think about this with me. the original thought when you think about energy production, the picture that comes to mind is the guy in the hard hat with the oil uniform out on the drilling derrick and whether its out in the ocean or on shore, he has his oil uniform and turning that big chain that's actually help seat the drill and turn the drill as they drill. those are the jobs you're thinking about. but when we talk about energy jobs, it's more than that. those guys go out to the rig for 10, 12 days at a time and come back. those guys have to get carried out there to the drilling platform. they have to take food and drilling mud and diesel fuel to the drilling platforms. that means supply vessels and
supply vessel work. everything they take out there, the drilling mud has to be mined somewhere. the casing, the pipes, everything that makes the drilling platform work has to be carried out there. and all the widgets, components that have to be manufactured to make it all work out there, they're manufactured on shore. the people that are manufacturing and pipe fitting and welding occasionally they'll drop a pipe on an auto body and that auto body has to go down to the mechanic and have it fixed or blow an energy and have to have it serviced. the guys that go out and do the hvac work or food service because they're living quarters and heating and air out on those rigs as well. those people are on shore. guess what? they're going to the local restaurants and they're tipping the waitresses. they're joining the united way, sponsoring ball teams. they're going to church and they're tithing. the first nomdomino is to allow
more energy production in this country. you're putting americans to work. those are the jobs i'm talking about and those are good jobs. i'll be honest with you, my state of south carolina would love to see some those jobs happen if we open up the outer continental shelf, south atlantic open up that atlantic osc for more energy protection. that's one thing the expand act does. those are the jobs. if you fly down to louisiana, a state i've come to love and you fly to lafayette and drive down highway 190 or 181 that parallels 90, you go from thibodeau and go on down to port fush fushon and you'll see business after business after business that's supporting some facet in the oil and gas business. that's why they have low unemployment.
i want to see that in south carolina. i want to see that across this country as we expand energy production in this nation. how do we do that? we open up the outer continental shelf area. that's one thing it does. drilling activity you have offshore in america is off the coast of alaska and is in the -- generally the western gulf of mexico. you see very little other drilling activity happening on the ocs. you have old wells off the coast of california. california is blessed with energy resources as well. i think we ought to open up more of the outer continental shelf. we ought to do that first by allowing more seismic activity to happen. that's one thing we try to push for, at least in the mid-atlantic, is more seismic activity so we can see what recoverable resources might be
out there. it's been about 30 or 35 years since we did any seismic in the atlantic on or about ton see whether there were any recoverable resources there. and so we're looking at 30, 35-year-old seismic graphs. that were shot with 30-year-old technology. let's get into the 21st century. let's talk about 3d and 4d seismic technology that can look in the earth and spin it around and look for salt domes and where there might be recoveriable resources. eliminate a lot of steps of exploration and go into more energy production. we need to allow that 21st century technology to happen off the coast of south carolina off the coast of north carolina, off the coast of virginia, off the coast of georgia. states that currently want to see that activity happen. if you think about really the environmentalist push back on is you hurt a marine mammal. we can't point to any episode in
the world where a marine animal has been killed or injured through seismic work. i asked the secretary in front of the committee to give me those examples as we were talking about seismic work and environmental impact study. give me an example. because we're doing seismic work in the atlantic, but it's up in nova scotia. it's in canadian waters. the we've allowed mitigation efforts to happen. if there are any animals in the area, we'll stop activity. if we knowat migrates patterns of certain animals, we won't allow seismic activity. that makes sense perform if you think of the seismic active off brazil indonesia, canada and nova scotia, you see a lot of seismic work. same dynamics are there. they don't have the mitigation efforts we are required to have in this country. when i think about what i talked about earlier the price of a
barrel of oil is below $50. i talked to a buddy of mine, former congressman jeff landry in louisiana said help me understand the dynamics that might number play if we look at $50 a barrel of oil or less? what does that mean to the gulf coast state, the oil and gas pricers in the gulf of mexico and the bakken. if you drop below that for a period of time, it's not going to be profitable. what does that mean? and he said, one factor that's never talked about in the price of a barrel of oil is the regulatory costs. it costs more to produce a barrel of oil in this country than it does almost anywhere else in the world because of the regulatory environment we have to operate in. and so we really need to address, address some regulatory environment in oil and gas production. it also addresses the regulatory
environment that nuclear power plants operate under. not the ones currently operating but going forward how do we build a new nuclear power plant in this country? see, in my state we have one of the few nuclear power permits, a new power plant being constructed in jenkinsville, south carolina. only two that have been permitted since i've been in congress, that i'm aware of. one across the river in augusta, georgia, and southern power and one in jenkinsville south carolina across the county line from my district. it took decades to get that permitting. it shouldn't cost tens of billions of dollars of investment and compliance with regulatory environment to build a nuclear power plant. if you think about nuclear power and i'll touch base on this just a minute, we'll move o but nuclear power. we ought to look at modularization and miniaturization of nuclear power. if you think about nuclear power, at any given time we have
almost 100 nuclear power plants, small nuclear power plants floating around the seas of the world in the united states navy. not a single mishap that i'm aware of. and i bet they didn't have to go through all the regulations that the jenkinsville plant had to go through. we ought to be able to come up with one two, three proven designs for a nuclear power plant and replicate that. nuclear power is clean. there's no carbon emissions other than the backup generatorses and maybe the cars pulling into the parking lot. nuclear power works. we're proud to have a nuclear power plant in my district. that is one thing we need to look at as well and that definitely ties in well with what we talked about from the regulatory environment. americans are in need of an energy approach. when you think about all of the above, you think about wind solar, hydrogen, all of those groovy technologies i really like. like the look of a wind mill. i think that's neat can you harness the wind. some say it's free. it's not free because it's a
significant investment in the wind turbines and in the location and transmission lines and everything. it's not free. it does take an investment. i like that technology. but it's enter minute ent. the wind doesn't blow all the time. the sun doesn't shine all the time. i like solar technology as well. to harness energy from the sun i think is groovy technology as well. it still requires transmission lines. it still requires placement areas. it requires, hey, if you look at a map of the western united states where a lot of those sunny days are a lot of the open spaces are, who owns it? it's owned by the federal government. so if we're going to expapd the availability of land for solar and wind we need to open up federal land for that type of investment as well. when we talk about opening federal land for energy production, the first thing people think about is you want to put oil and gas out there. you want to start oil and gas
production. yeah, i do. but i also want to open up that land for solar and wind as well. and it also requires opening of that federal land for transmission lines opening up that land for roads and bridges and the cell towers and a lot of other things that are necessary in order to make those technologies work as well. part of the expand act would open up that federal land to more energy development. there's a side bar we never talk about, and the expand at this point doesn't but we ought to talk about mining. mining for uranium and the rare earths it to make it all work. without that rare earth minerals a lot of this technology doesn't work either. we're relying on china for a lot of the rare earths now. you have a cell phone in your pocket, i'm sure a lot of rare earths in that as well. we ought to talk more about rare earth minerals and the fact that federal land i'm talking about holds a lot of those rare earths but they're currently off the table. one country going around the world gobbling up the mineral rights of rare earths and that's
china. we need to be cognizant of that. let's talk about expand act a little bit. it's truly all of the above energy approach. open up that federal land for oil and gas and wind and solar production that we talked about earlier. opens up more of the gulf of mexico. right now, most of the gulf of mexico is the western gulf of mexico. none of the eastern gulf is open. now, there are some environmentally sensitive areas. we're not talking about those areas. we can exclude some of the environmentally sensitive areas. there are some areas where the united states navy, and i would assume the air force, do some mining ranges carrier landings and more sensitive from a national security standpoint. those are flight lines and those areas they practice. those can be offlimits as well. why shut down the whole gulf of mexico for those various reasons. just as another side bar i was thinking about on the plane as i came here is what the president did with cuba recently. regardless of how you feel about
opening up and normalizing relations with cuba the thought occurred to me if we do open up and normalize relations with cuba, is that going to open up more access to cuban waerts for american energy producers? right now they're open to chinese and russian energy producers who probably aren't doing it with the same epa and osha regulations we're required to follow. they drive up the cost of a barrel of oil for american producers. if it opens up more of the cuban waters, what does that say to the whole eastern gulf of mexico closure that we talked about just a second ago? so, you can't have that without having a conversation about the eastern gom as well. that's shallow and deep water. i was proud to be proud of implementing one thing i think the obama administration got right. you don't hear that come out of a conservative's mouth very often. but one is the hydrocarbon
agreement with mexico signed by hillary clinton at a summit in cabo. the transboundary hydrocarbon agreement. it opened up 1.5 million acres in the gulf of mexico. if you can think about a boundary between the united states and mexico, you think about that border in texas and new mexico, think about a maritime border, extending out into the gulf of mexico where we have territorial waters on the mexican side and territorial waters on the u.s. side. under that paritime boundary are recoverable resources. and for a long time that 1.5 million acres and what they call the western gap part of the gulf of mexico was offlimits. no one was producing. mexico wasn't producing. u.s. wasn't producing. they signed this agreement and said, we're going to allow that area to be produced. allow shared resources to be produced. we'll share rev nushgs technology, share some of the regulations. well, once they sign that agreement, we asked ken salazar,
secretary of the interior at the time, how about sending us the implementing language so we can implement that? we would like to open up 1.5 million acres in the gulf because we believe there are recoverable resources that could go into the mix of american energy independence. he wouldn't send us the implementing language. after a year of that doc hastings and i and a number of others on the committee decided to write it myself. i wrote the transboundary hey droe carbon implementing language, passed it through the house. bipartisan. wasn't unanimous but it was bipartisan. went to the senate. couldn't get anybody to deal with it over there. we're able to get it into the omnibus last year, last december. that opened up 1.5 million acres in the gulf. so, we're going to start developing that. well, if it can happen there, if we can do it in the western gulf, why can't we do it off the coast of south carolina? that was 506600 feet of water or
deeper. off the coast of my state. we're talking about 100, 120 feet deep, 70 feet out. that's shallow water. shallow water in the field of energy exploration. think about that. people say we don't want another deepwater horizon or an energy issue off the issue of south carolina, nor do i. nobody is advocating for reckless drilling. i think we're safer today than we ever have been with regard to energy drilling and production. but if you think about it, you can't compare apples and apples. off the coast of louisiana and off the gulf of mexico, where horizon was 5600 deep. 5600 feet, have you to get a robot to go down there and cap a gusher with a guy on the surface with with a playstation controller the a tv screen trying to operate that thing. off the coast of south carolina, god forbid if anything happens someone dives in with a wrench and blow torches and all the tools they need and takes care of it right then. that's the kind of thinking we
need to have. i just finished talking about expand real quick. i'm passionate about energy. i can talk about energy all day in a lot of different realms. the expand act is something we're going to reintroduce. it allows a 37.5% refuse new sharing to come back to the states that are revenue sharing. my state would love to have 37% of oil refuse new produced off our coast. my general assembly can direct that to the roads and bridges and infrastructure needs we have in south carolina. now, there's a different mix of energy revenue sharing in this country. wyoming got $1 billion last year in revenue sharing. louisiana and texas mississippi, alabama and florida each split $500 million. $100 million each. wyoming got $1 billion. louisiana got $100 million.
anwar and national patrol and reserve up there, areas proven to have resources that we should look at. swreshd a leasing program up there off the coast of alaska. just going through the bill here. it breaks down right of ways of and breaks down access on federal land that we talked about earlier. it does prohibit sdeg nation of new wilderness areas. this is a guy that enjoyed the bob marshall wilderness in montana and still do. so i appreciate the wilderness areas. but if we got some energy issues there, maybe we take a very comprehensive look at those areas before we just designate them wilderness review areas.
a lot of things with epa. i keep pointing to the thing jeff landry told me was the cost of a barrel of oil. cost more in the united states because of the regulations. with we ought to take a look at the regulatory environment. it touches on keystone pipeline. i'm assuming the senate does their work and the president doesn't revoe it or override it and keystone happens i'll pull that out. it won't be necessary anymore. it talks about reopening yucca mountain, something we've invested and continue to invest money in because they're still collecting money out of the rate payers in south carolina, they're still collecting money out of their utility bill every week or every month. reopen yucca mountain. we can have a long conversation about yucca mountain. it keeps endangered species act from hampering oil and gas and
other energy resources. rolls back some energy subsidies and things like we saw with sal sa -- cylindra. and the last thing i'll talk about is the whole climate change. it doesn't allow the climate change aspects of low carbon emissions to stop what's proven. that's oil and gas production in this country and utilization of proven resources that aren't. i talked about wind and solar being intermittent. what did i mean by that? sun doesn't shine always and wind doesn't blow. until we come up with a way to store that energy through wind and solar, it makes it a very volatile energy source. see, in order to be able to store enough usable energy to run a manufacturing plant from wind and solar, have you to have humongous batteries. we've got to focus on the r&d side on how to miniaturize and expand the capacity of a smaller battery system for wind and
solar in order to make it viable. if you think ab4(uo -- it can only go so far. elon musk, one of the issues he has is battery capacity. lightweight vehicle. it's battery powered. but can you only have so many batteries in there if you had too many batteries, it would be too heavy and you wouldn't be able to travel as far. there's a balance there. look into that as well. look into the battery capacity and look at wind and solar when we think about energy and using those technologies as well. i'd be glad to try to answer any questions. i don't know how i'm doing on time, but maybe have gone a little over. >> thank you. [ applause ] >> thank you, congressman. that was great. now, i'd like to invite nick loris, her better and joyce morgan fellow institute for economic freedom and opportunity here at heritage. and myron ebell is director
center for energy and environment, cei. before we open it up for questions, a couple minutes remarks from both of you and then we'll ask the audience for questions. thank you. >> sure. i'll start off and then turn it over to myron. congressman, thanks for those remarks and thank you all for being here today. when i was in north dakota, i saw what the congressman was talking about. and i ate at this little restaurant that was basically a trailer park and it was a mom and daughter who moved from california to wiliston, north dakota, to start this restaurant chain because they couldn't in california. i never thought i would meet someone who voluntarily left california to live in north dakota. but that's what this economic opportunity has provided. and, congressman you did a great job focusing on the opportunities has provided us over the last few years. i'm going to take a few minutes
to talk about the other part of what heritage action has done in this favoritism to none. we've seen over the past few years what works and what doesn't in the energy policy. and when markets are free and open to competition we've seen job creation. we've seen billions of dollars in private money injected into the economy. frankly, a better standard of living. when markets are strangled by regulation that are devoid of any meaningful environmental benefit, when you have subsidies that pick winners and losers in the marketplace, and when you have either efficiency mandates or renewable fuel mandates that force the use of one good over another, you're faced with higher cost. you're faced with a worst standard of living, wasted taxpayer dollars and less choice. and i think what's probably more preverse that i don't think conservatives do a good job of talking about enough is even though these policies these
subsidies, mandates things like that are to promote -- they actually do more harm to the long-term progress that actually help it. it's this dependence on government that perpetuates stagnation rather than competition. and to give you an example before i turn it over to myron let me read you a quote from "the new york times." it reads matthew wald writes a new generation of wind mills that done kehoety could never tilt at is ready to take place at an economical and important source of the nation's energy. because of striking improvements in technology, the commercial use of these wind mills or wind turbines as builders call them has shown that in addition to being pollution-free, they can now compete with fossil fuels in the cost of producing electricity. now, that reads like a quote that was maybe tossed around during the wind production tax credit debate over the past few months. matthew wald wrote that in
september of 1992. almost 23 years later the arguments are basically the same. give us a few more years. glyph us a few more dollars and we'll make it on our own. when that extension runs out, it's the same thing. asking for another year. asking for a few more billion dollars. when you have a large part of your production cost paid for by the taxpayer that's what you'll get. your incentive structural changes dramatically. that's why we're not just focusing on opportunity for all because we've seen what opportunity provides us. we're focusing on favorite tichl to none. it provides technologies that may be emerging and let's them stand up and compete on their own two feet or die a painful death, but at least it's dead
through their own private investment not through the taxpayer. with that, i'll take it over to myron and be happy to answer any questions. >> thank you, nick. i want to thank tim chapman and nick loris and heritage action for america for inviting me to participate in this. i think it's important to give so many solid conservative members of congress. senator duncan is very conservative, solid. someone from the rural west, federal land state area, i get worried when someone gets on the national resources committee someone from the west because he doesn't always get all these issues. but he gets them. he's a great member of the natural resources committee. we have a competitive advantage in this country. coal, oil, natural gas. we have over 200 years of coal. we now have over 100 years of natural gas and nobody really
knows how much oil we have because as congressman duncan said, our offshore areas have not been explored. now, the fracing revolution, the shale, oil and gas revolution is due not to government but to the market. we have a very invadetive competitive market. that is what has created that revolution. our competitive disadvantage here is the regulatory state and all of these special interest handouts. favoritism toward some. we have in this country huge problems in getting anything permitted. that's why one of the big important things in this bill is what representative duncan has
done to streamline permitting. the most important is he turns over oil and gas leasing on federal land to the states. now, it used to be that you could go out if you tried -- if you had a blm lease, an oil lease, you could go to the blm office and get a permit in a day to drill a well on your lease. now it takes months or years. that's why oil and gas production on federal land and offshore is going downhill. whereas on private land and state land, it's going up, up, up. so, i would say that's a very important part of this bill. you know we need to figure out how to maximize our competitive advantage here, which is we have the world's greatest energy resources. and minimize our competitive disadvantage which is we have the most oppressive land use in natural resource regulations in the world. a big project in canada under the environmental assessment
act, the harper government changed the law. the average was five years to get it permitted. the law has changed. they have to get it done now within three years. a big natural resource project in this country takes 10 to 0 years if it gets done at all because the environmentalists have figured out you can kill a project by delaying it to death. that's what president obama is trying to do with the keystone pipeline. thank you. >> thank you. let's open it up to questions from the audience. right down here. yes, sir. >> hi. my name is james reed, george washington university. in the last six months we've seen oil drop from $100 a barrel now to $46. i've read the market watch articles saying it's a falling knife where it can go below 40, 30, i've even read an article saying it could go to $14 a barrel. and my question is about given the opportunity to drill some of the shale companies might not
drill because. unprofitability of that. so, my question is what can congress do? what can policy experts do to incentivize these companies to drill in this climate of low oil prices. >> the plunging price of oil per barrel does that disincentivize people when it comes to drilling for shale? if so should we be concerned about that? >> i'm not sure what the price spoint for break even for drilling in the bakken. i do know one thing congress can do is try to lesson the regulation and the regulatory environment to make it easier. as i talked about earlier, the price of a barrel of oil is higher. cost of a production of a barrel of oil in this country is higher than anything else. that's one thing we can do. if you think about the bakken, the gentleman mentioned earlier, where this activity is happening is on state and private land.
the federal government hadn't been involved in it. that is attributable to past presidents who basically said we're not going to regulate state and private land and that enabled it. i want so-to-see more of that. maybe less of the federal government's involvement in it as a whole will help folks be incentivized. when the federal government gets involved in something, the price usually goes up. >> i would add it's important to get the policy right now. even if that doesn't incentivize necessarily more drilling at this point when that price point gets to a point where they can act on new fields, offshore, onshore, it's important to open the area now so when the price rises, when the new ee quib lib reyum comes, they can act on those new plays. different areas of the region have different cost measures because of the geological makeup because it costs more to frac in one area of the country than another. that's why i think we really
just need to focus on opening these areas and letting the market determine when the businesses make these investments and make these decisions so when they can and when they want to, we aren't in a place to do it because of the laws. >> a year ago people said oil would never get below $100 a barrel and now people say it will never get below $00. who knows. i think what nick said is absolutely right and what representative duncan said about getting down the regulatory costs. in 1995 when the republicans took over congress, they sent legislation to open the coastal plane of the arctic national wildlife refuge to oil exploration. president clinton vetoed that legislation and the environmental defense, the environmental group defense of that was well it won't help with the currently high gasoline prices because it will take ten years before that oil starts
flowing from anwar. we should have people in congress who think more than a couple months ahead. we need to think 10, 0 years ahead. that's why this bill is an important bill. >> and i would just -- the last thing i'll say on this is that we've got to push back on these desire to raise gasoline taxes right now because oil prices are so low. they're not always going to be this low. now is not a good time to raise taxes. moms and dads and businesses are just now starting to experience a little economic incentive. they're putting money in their pocket. it's cheaper to deliver the goods and services. it's cheaper to take the family out to eat. so, why throw cold water on this economy? >> it compensating for the higher medical insurance costs. >> we have a question right here. >> thank you. congressman, i notice with satisfaction in the background that was handed out on this conference about the expand act, you are calling for the removal
of special tax breaks for all special sources. i didn't see anything about the special limited liability considerations given to nuclear power. especially if you're going to be removing or easing the licensing and regulation requirements if you don't at same time remove those special liability limitations, aren't you inviting the same kind of problems that occurred with the bailout of the big banks if there should be another three-mile island and there would be a political reaction against this kind of legislation. >>. >> can you repeat that -- >> let me just say this about nuclear power. they cannot depreciate and -- some of the capital expenses for nuclear power. that is causing the cost of nuclear reactors to go up. it isn't talked about in this bill. it's more of a tax policy issue.
but if you look at the billions of permitting costs for nuclear power and then you factor in the aspect that some of the capital expenditure can't be appreciated within that industry the way the other capital expenditures and investments can be it's still a disincentive. >> yes, sir. >> does your expand act allow for exports of our energy resources, like they get to do up there in norway and canada and saudi arabia or prohibition against export still remain under expand? thank you. >> there's a lot of talk right now about exporting our oil or allowing u.s.-produced oil to be put out on the global market. and i don't have a firm opinion on that yet.
the free marketeer in me says if you meet supply with demand the price goes down. the problem with me and i talked with jeff landry about that this morning because he's my go-to guy, but the refineries in this country aren't set up to refine a lot of the oil the type of oil that's produced in the bakken. it's more set up to produce -- or to refine sweet oil sweet crude. we import a lot of oil that goes to our refineries and is produced -- produces all the products that a barrel of oil produces. and so we've also got to address the refineries in this country and whether build new refineries allowing retooling of some refineries the way i understand it if we're ever going to allow the oil to be exported. >> it's a good question because i think that's going to be one of the hot spots next year. nick, maybe if you could talk about -- we support lifting the ban on crude. and it is kind of -- it's an
interesting issue even within the conservative movement because you have conservatives who come down on different sides of the offers. maybe, if you could walk folks through why we're supportive of that and how we've been talking to our friends about that. >> while he's doing that, i have -- there was a vote that was cast last week. you may have heard about. but i have some meetings with leadership team this afternoon. so i'm going to have to leave. and i do apologize for that. that's what's come up. >> tell them to be bold, okay? >> thank you. thank you to the congressman. go ahead, nick. >> thank you. at heritage, we're he a pro free trade organization and energy is no exception. you know, there is -- we think that oil crude oil, natural gas should be treated just like any other good or service we trade regularly around the country so we should lift the ban on crude oil exports. if there's been some concern among politicians it's going to
raise the gasoline price so we should be haes tant on doing so, one that shouldn't be a concern. even so, because of what the congressman said about matching up refining capabilities, you're also creating a more efficient oil distribution chain by getting this light oil to where it can be refined more efficiently in european markets where we can take on the heavier crudes from places like canada and mexico. so it would actually lower gasoline prices in the enter immediate runs. it's the same with natural gas. with lng exports we're pro-lng exports. we think the department of energy shouldn't be in the business of determining if natural gas exports should be in the public interest which they have to do before we can export lng to nonfree trade agreement countries. it's a nonsensical barrier right now. yes, it will take a long time for u.s. to build those lng export terminals and get the natural gas to the places where it's much higher than in the
united states but it's about getting the policy right now so the private sector has the right incentive to act. >> great. >> if i could add one thing. you know we've had this long kind of level of concern about national energy security going back to the arab oil embargo and the nixon price controls. and everybody has tried to work around the fact that we have all these energy resources that we're not using and that we're not producing. and we have to import more and more oil from the middle east. we don't like those people. it would be nicer not to buy oil from them. we're at a point now where we can produce a lot more oils and gas. i think these national security arguments that there's some kind of band-aid fix for it rather than simply producing more energy. those have disappeared. you know, the rationale for the ethanol mandate.
for cafe standards, for electric cars. all that rationale has gone. we have huge quantities of coal oil and natural gas. there's no reason we can't benefit by using it and by exporting it. and so i hope the export bans will be lifted, but the environmental groups are doing everything they can to stop the export of coal, by blocking coal export terminals. unfortunately, they control the govern norship of the three western states which is a problem, pacific states. and they're trying to block lng terminal permitting and trying to keep the ban on oil exports. and i think this is a huge obstacle to our economic prosperity. and i wish these national energy security people would realize that the problem has been solved. the problem that they identified back in the '70s is no more.
time has passed them by. it wasn't their policies that solved the problem. and so they need to rethink it. and i hope they do. >> thank you. we have time for one more question. >> all right. yeah actually, why don't we close up. because we've got a big one coming on. thank you to the panelists. and if folks, we'll take another ten-minute break. we'll have senator demint back on stage here in ten minutes. he'll be introducing senator cruz. just to give a plug for you for the remaining two panels, we'll have six of the really conservative great guys who were elected in 2014 here after that to talk about what 2014 meant, what they think the american people were saying to them in this election. so that will be very interesting. please don't miss that. jim jordan will wrap us up at end talking about how conservatives can lead in this next congress. see you all in ten minutes. thanks.
this is the first day of a two-day conservative policy summit at the heritage foundation in washington, d.c. they're going to hear from texas senator ted cruz in about ten minutes or so. he's the keynote speaker this afternoon. we'll have that live for you here on c-span3 just ahead of when it gets under way. we also want to let you know, too, the house rules committee is meeting this afternoon to mark up legislation -- prepare the rule, rather, for debate on a couple of bills dealing with rolling back the dodd-frank financial regulations law. that's live at about 5:00 p.m. eastern. again, ahead of that, senator cruz scheduled for 4:00 p.m. eastern. short while ago, the discussion
was focused on the labor market, conservative solutions or conservative reforms in the labor market. todd rikita of indiana was the speaker in that panel. >> happy new year to everybody. it is good to be here. i come again with a terrific sense of honor to represent the people of indiana's fourth district. and by extension, the people of indiana as a whole. i'm very proud to be a part of this, this production today because heritage i think is very, very important. it has been for the last several decades and it will be for the future of this republic. ifby choose bywe choose to keep it. i make that paraphrase from that legendary story about benjamin franklin coming out of
constitutional hall and what's become the elderly lady who poked him in the chest and said young man, what kind of country have you given us? he said, ma'am, have you a republic if you can keep it. at the end of the day i flow that's what brings me here today. and i think that's what brings you all whether it is here in the audience today too chime in to tune in or online. i'm very pleased to follow the new chairman of the budget committee, dr. tom price. he's been a mentor of mine over the last four years since i've joined congress and always comes to the table with a clear mind great ideas and these ideas are broeld. i expect bold. i expect him to follow in paul ryan's footsteps this that regard in leading budget committee because it is at the budget committee where these discussions about keeping our republic by reducing
entitlements, reforming the size and scope of our federal government all start with the 302a numbers and the flairtive that we put in there about what's really driving our $18 trillion of debt right now. but today i come with work from the education and workforce committee that we're focused on. that i expect to continue to gather traction and gain momentum. i also bring greetings from senator marco rubio who is the senate counterpart leader on this legislation. called the raise act. rewarding achieve and insenivizing successful employees. as was discussed it is real simple. it is five pages. it is hard going to be for me to get five minutes of talking up here for a five-page bill but it is really that simple. it is currently under current law illegal to pay unionized
employees more than their union g negotiates. it is not in the bosses to allow their employees to be paid beyond merit, to go outside the union contract. it really is against the very definition of unionism. this bill, the r.a.i.s.e. would allow employers employers of union shops, regardless of the union contract, give employees a raise based on merit.
they're a union employee. a raise based on merit. very simple idea. very pro worker. some may say antiunion. i really don't think it's that. it does make the union prove their value to the employee. and maybe that's a discussion that we should have separately. i dop want to be clear though that the employers cannot selectively under current law give raises to anti-union workers to undermine the union. that's a law as well and the r.a.i.s.e. act wouldn't make that illegal. that kind of discrimination would still stay illegal on the idea that, if you're one of my employees and you start aggressively being anti-union, we'll give you a raise for that. that still is an illegal discrimination. that's not what the raise act is about. raise act is about pure merit. if under whatever objective
measure an employee would otherwise get a raise even if in a union shop this would make it okay. economic research tells us that the average worker's earnings would rise 6% to 10% when pay is performance based. we think that passage of the raise act could increase the average union worker's salary between $2,700 and $4,500 per year in performance pay bonuses and merit raises. and when you think about -- i just read an article today from the united way in howard county which is part of indiana's 4th zrikt district. families who they've studies, struggling just above the poverty line. that's worthy of debate as well, what's the poverty line, what should it be. but these families that were studied, the conclusion was that any kind of upset in their income, where certainly a loss
of a job, even a major car repair bill could bump these families down below united states poverty line. so that's just the latest example of how people are really struggling. but how the free market, how performance based pay, how judging people on merit, right? that's the title basically of today's summit. fairness for everybody. judge people on how they do and what they do and not on favoritism, how that could really help. it's also perhaps not a direct answer to but certainly a pivot for this whole idea about minimum wage which we know doesn't work. why doesn't it work? all i want that young person to have their first job part-time or otherwise. i want employers to hire more people, not less. of course, as we know, raising the minimum wage does the
opposite of that. but what a great answer this could be to that discussion on whether it's at the dinner table or talking across the country or even the world in a forum like this. answer to the minimum wage. yes, the way to put more money in people's pocket is through something like the raise act where people can get rewarded for what they do for the value that they add for the dignity of their work and not as necessarily a handout to a union negotiated contract. that's the discussion i think we need to have i hopeby get bywe get to have during the panel. that's the kind of discussion i think america needs. i think america expects, certainly americans deserve out of true leaders, which again i find each and everyone of you to
be. if no for other reason than you're sitting in here on a rainy, cold, washington day listening to a guy like me talk. but again i want to thank the heritage action for allowing me to speak today and i look forward to the great questions and the discussion. thank you. >> part of comments earlier here at heritage foundation their two-day conservative policy summit. you can see all of our coverage online any time at c-span.org. up next on the agenda this afternoon is senator ted cruz. he'll be the keynote speaker and should get under way here momentarily at heritage. we want to let you no he we'll move back on over to capitol hill on c-span3 for the rules house committee. they are meeting to mark up legislation this afternoon at 5:00. we'll have that live here on c-span3. both the house and the senate will be in this afternoon. the house coming in to deal with a couple of suspension bills.
one that would ask the va to annually evaluate mental health care and also another bill amending the tax code ensuring that emergency service volunteers aren't considered employees under the health care law. but over in the senate they'll be taking up the keystone pipeline bill. house passed its measure on friday approving the keystone pipeline construction. the last portion of the pipeline. the senate this afternoon will be voting on whether they move forward with that legislation. the senate is in. those votes are expected at around 5:30 eastern. our senate coverage is on c-span2. our house coverage here on c-span. we wait here for senator ted cruz momentarily here on c-span3.
good discussion. but i can't think of anyone i'd rather introduce right now than ted cruz. there are very few people i know in any organization, especially in congress, who have the intellectual capability to understand complex problems, to actually come up with good solutions. but then to have the courage, the personal fortitude to actually push those ideas through and to stand up to incredible pressure the kind of pressure i was talking about this morning from all the big cronies in washington that want to maintain the status quo. ted cruz has been willing to stand up and say no. i was talking to him on the way in. i said things seem to be going pretty well. he said it is like the guy who's falling off the building. every floor he goes by he says, so far, so good. i know that feeling. the bottom is coming. right? i think ted cruz is definitely on his way up and that's what i hear around the country. not so much thanks for what you've done or all the victories
you've won, but more than anything else i hear, thanks for fighting. that's what people want, is someone to just stand up for what they believe stand up for the values of americans and just do what you can. ted cruz has definitely done that as much as anyone i know. i'm real proud to know him. ted, come share your thoughts. >> well, thank you very much jim. thank each of you for having me here. good afternoon on this cold wintry day in washington. these are extraordinary times. these remarkable times. just last week walking down the hallway in the capitol i ran
into a janitor carrying a screwdriver. coming to change the sign on harry reid's door. and i'll tell you, with all great clang there's usually foreshadow. you know, you could get the foreshadowing of the november election come august, september, october. you know one of the first signs, jim suddenly the democratic senators were nice to us. they were looking ahead to election day and you'd be on the elevator they'd say, hey, what a great tie that is. have you lost weight? you're looking sharp. like, z losing that chairman's gavel are you? it was an astonishing election
in november. but it's important to understand what the election signifies. the election was not an embrace of republicans. the election was not an embrace of one party. instead, the election, in my view was the voters roundly repudiating the path we're on. this was an election which the voters said, listen. the obama economy it ain't working. we want something different. we want real leadership. i got to say, republicans have an opportunity, an incredible opportunity right now. we have been once again entrusted with leadership in congress. and i want to say thank you to harry jackson for hosting this
event. because as i understand this event, the core focus is you got a majority, what are you going to do with it? and you know, there's a division of thought in this town. there are some people in this town who will intone in gravelly voices, we need to get things done done. oddly enough the people saying that it doesn't really 345er9 lyly matter what those things are. tlp are there are voices who will say, if you stand for anything significant that has electoral risk. i remember in the last two years people said, no, no republicans, you shouldn't stand and fight on anything because you don't have a majority.
okay. we have a majority. mark my words suddenly there are voices that are saying, you still shouldn't stand and fight. you hear another voice say no not yet, you don't have 60. i'm going to suggest a different way to get things done, a different way to govern, and a different way to win elections. listen, i very much agree with president ronald reagan who said the republican party is not a fraternal order. it's not simply about palling around with guys in red sweaters
instead of blue sweaters. it is a movement unified around a shared set of ideals liberty, the constitution and it matters only insofar as we are standing up and defending those constitutional values. and so what i would encourage my friends, my colleagues in the republican party, in the senate and the house is something very very simple. let's stand up and lead. let's lead with a 0&qúz!ig bold, positive agenda that says to the american people you had a referendum and you rejected the obama agenda. there is a better way. that's our opportunity. i'll tell you, for all the republicans intoning we must get
things done, if we simply settle into business as usual in this town and keep growing and growing and growing÷ó b the leviathon and keep shrinking and shrinking and shrinking that sphere of individual liberty, we will demoralize the millions of men and women who came out in november and gave republicans the biggest majority in the house since the 1920s. not only will we not win elections, we'll get walloped and we'll deserve to get walloped. what i would urge my colleagues to do is very, very simple. you know it is the advice -- a lot of us here have kids. everyone of us has told our kids tell the truth and do what you said you would do.
that is the advice i would give every one of our colleagues. you know, it is striking in the senate. two years ago i remember joining the other republican freshmen in mitch mcconnell's office. there were three of us. it was lonely. it was really lonely. we had enough for a game of spades. this year, there are 12 republican freshmen. a dozen. nearly a quarter of the republican conference are freshmen. i'll tell you what i've encouraged every freshman, is that if each of you that just fought and clawed to win an election, if each of you in the conference simply stands up every day and says hey let's do what we said we would do that will have a
transformational effect on the united states senate. if each and every senator. january answers questions the exact same way we would have answered questions in october before the election that will have a transformative effect. in my view republicans should take this opportunity to lead with a big, bold agenda that focuses on jobs, on liberty and on security. and let me talk about ten specific agenda items that we should take up and pass. and these are agenda items that i laid out before the election. if we want a majority this is what we should do. and after the election, my view shock of all shocks, is we should do exactly what we said before the election. step number one. embrace a big positive jobs
growth and opportunity agenda. that means a host of things. it means, for example as we will do this week, finally finally, finally passing the keystone pipeline. but listen jobs are a lot more than keystone. keystone matters. it is an example of partisan politics trumping common sense in this town. but we need a jobs agenda an energy agenda far broader than that. we've seen incredible growth in the energy sector in the last several years. last year i introduced the american energy renaissance act, a comprehensive piece of legislation to remove the federal barriers to creating millions of high-paying jobs in the private sector, in the energy sector. not just in energy. low-cost energy is also bringing manufacturing jobs back,
bringing steel jobs back, bringing the kind of jobs that built the dignity of the middle class in america. we need to pass legislation making clear that the federal government has no authority to regulate or prohibit fracking, that the state's are perfectly poised to make determinations in their own states and there's no need for the feds to stick their those in the middle of it. we need to remove the arbitrary export bans on liquid natural gas on crude oil. we need to open up federal lands to exploration to development. president obama loves to brag about the energy exploration during his tenure without noting that virtually all of it lass happened on private land and federal land.
the federal government has been standing as an impediment to building those resources. number two, we need to do everything humanly possible to repeal obamacare. you know five years ago when obamacare was being debated reasonable minds perhaps could have differed over whether this thing might work. today seeing the devastation seeing the train wreck seeing the millions of americans who have lost their jobs who have been forced into part-time work who have lost their health care who have lost their doctors. today the only reasonable, prudent outcome is to acknowledge this thing isn't
working and we need to repeal it and start over. what does that mean? what does that mean with president obama still in the white house? well, first of all in my mind, congress should take up in using every procedural tool available, including reconciliation, repeal obamacare with 51 votes in the senate. now if the president is very, very likely to veto that. for the next two years we're not going to have the votes to override that veto. what we then need to do is systematically begin teeing up legislation after legislation addressing the most harmful consequences of obamacare providing real relief to the millions of people who are hurting. for example, we need to introduce legislation, take it up and vote on it saying if you like your health insurance plan you can keep your health
insurance plan. the president repeatedly looked in the tv cameras and made that promise over and over and over again. we need to codify it for the 6 million people who had their health insurance plans canceled because of obamacare. we need to address the pain the federal government has caused to them. i would note that also puts democrats in an interesting position. there are lots of senate democrats who say well gosh, i like obamacare in the abstract but there are individual problems with it. okay, let's start talking about those individual problems. one after the other after the other, you decide as a senate democrat if you're in favor of the federal government causing people to lose their health insurance plans or not. you decide if you're a senate democrat if you're in favor of the federal government bailing out giant insurance companies or
not. we need to pass straightforward legislation that prohibits federal government bailouts in insurance companies. one after the other after the other we need to pass these. now 1 of 2 things is going to happen. one, the democrats block it either through philfilibuster in the senate or through the president vetoing it or two, they pass it along. if the latter we begin to provide meaningful relief to the people who are really hurting and if the former there is absolute clarity as to where the parties stand and what we stand for. but we need to honor those commitments. number three we need to finally secure the border and stop the president's unconstitutional amnesty. you know, it is amazing right
now the white house is castigating republicans, how dare you focus on securing the border literally at the very same time we are seeing terrorists trying to murder three people across the globe. the very same day centcom has been hacked by isis. the white house press secretary is too busy saying no no no, don't do anything to secure the border and protect americans. this is a matter of basic common sense. i got to tell you one of the fun things about washington is listening to senate democrats who live in states far, far away from the border. explain to those of us who live in states on the border how wonderfully secure the border
really is. i have a modest suggestion. perhaps we should move the white house down to the rio grande valley. after all, there can't be more people climbing the white house fence than there are now. you know when you go down to the valley and in texas we have a nearly 2,000-mile border on the southern border. what you hear from people who live there, what you hear from law enforcement, from local elected officials, and by the way, from republicans and democrats, is secure the borders and protect our security. it's a basic common sense issue. when it comes to amnesty anyone who's concerned about rule of law, anyone who is concerned about separation of powers, anyone who believes in the constitution should be deeply, deeply dismayed. by the president's decree that he will simply ignore federal
law. when he unilaterally tried to grant amnesty to millions of voters -- i said voters. what's interesting about the president's approach on this is it seems like it is always always always political. before the election, president obama said this election will be a referendum on my policies. every one of my policies will be on the ballot. president obama was right. words that have not been said often at the heritage foundation. but you better believe if the senate democrats had been re-elected, if harry reid had grown his majority, the president would have gotten up and opined "the people have spoken" and they have embraced my agenda." instead, the president got up
and said, the people who didn't vote have spoken. never mind those pesky people that actually showed up and expressed their views. let me say something about both obamacare and amnesty. we brought michael j. fox up here in a delaurean and we went back in time to october 2014, not too long ago. you would see republican candidates all over the country in october of 2014 saying if you elect us if you give us a republican majority, what will we do? number one, we're going to fight tooth and nail to repeal obamacare. the number one topic republican candidates raised on the campaign trail. and number two, if you elect us if you give us a republican majority, we're going to stop president obama's illegal and
unconstitutional amnesty. that was just over two months ago. and yet now when the topics come up, at times you hear crickets chirping. it ain't complicated. we need to do what we said we would do. ooh number number four, we need to hold government accountable and rein in judicial activism. one of the most important things this new senate is going to provide, i hope and believe, is real meaningful oversight trftof the obama administration, of the abuse of power, of the lawlessness, of the regulatory abuse. i am looking forward to what i hope will be republican chairmen
conducting careful, sober, serious inquiries into the abuse of power and the millions of people who are hurting because of it. i am looking forward to seeing united states senate finally begin doing its job. for six years harry reid has been barack obama's most important protector. i'm looking forward to seeing serious inquiries into the trampling of religious liberties that have occurred over the last six months. i'm looking forward to seeing finally some real scrutiny to prevent judicial activists from being put on the bench who will impose their own radical agenda, including, sadly, the judicial activism we have seen in recent months with the courts effectively striking down the marriage laws in 33 states.
constitution makes clear marriage is a question for the states. it's not a question for a bunch of unelected federal judges who may disagree with the democratic views of the people who live in the united states of america. number five. it's time to stop the culture of corruption. i've said a lot of times that the biggest divide we have in this country politically is not between republicans and democrats. it's not between the establishment and the tea as the friends in our media like to write about. it is instead between career politicians in washington in both parties and the american people people. now i am hopeful we will see real bold leadership from republicans this year and next. but i got to say, the lame duck
was aptly named. it was not encouraging to see the giant pile of corporate welfare being the first things republicans rushed to pass through through. wouldn't it be nice to see our elected officials respond with the same diligence to the taxpayers that they respond to the promises made to lobbyists on k street. this town is fundamentally corrupt. both parties come together and they say let's reauthorize the xm bank. why? helps a whole bunch of giant corporations. just hurts the little guys. the big guys give us checks the little guys don't. one of the many, many reasons we need to finally finally finally pass a turn limits amendment to the united states
constitution constitution. serving in congress should not be a lifetime job. but what should be lifetime is a ban on members of congress becoming lobbyists and coming back after serving in this job. we need to pass fundamental tax reform making our tax code simpler, flatter, fairer. and i'll tell you, the single most important tax reform, we should abolish the irs. now the voices of washington will say tsk, tsk, that is inconsistent with getting things done.
now i will note some years ago steve forbes did a remarkable job starting to build the foundation for a flat tax. a simple flat tax that is fair, that every american could fill out his or her taxes on a postcard. the last two years i believe have fundamentally changed the dynamics of this debate. as we have seen the weaponization of the irs as we have seen the obama administration using the irs in a partisan manner to punish its political enemies. in my view there is a powerful populist instinct. to take the 110,000 employees at the irs, to padlock the building, and to put all 110,000
of them down on our southern border. now, i say that somewhat tongue in cheek. but you got to think, look, if you were coming illegally into this country if you had traveled hundreds of thousands of miles in the grinding heat if you swam across the rio grande and the first thing you saw was 110,000 irs agents? you'd turn around and go loam too! it may well be the case that we won't succeed. abolishing the irs and adopting a flat tax with barack obama in the white house. we may have to wait two years for a republican president to lead that fight but what we can do in the interim is we can one
after the other after theuxfc other tee up simplification of the tax code, made the burden easier. reduce the burdens reduce the power of washington which produces growth, which unchanged the citizenry. and weakens the course of power in washington. number seven, we need to audit the federal reserve. you know, one of the most corrosive things we have seen over the last six years has been an easy money policy. qe1, qe2, qe-infinity. and, i'm reminded of john edwards' speech, two americas.
john edwards, in this respect was right. another sentence rarely said in heritage heritage. if you go to wall street, if you go to those with wealth and power who walk the corridors of power in the obama administration, the conventional view is easy money is great. the conventional deal alal view is we're not seeing significant in inflation. but if you go talk to working men and women, if you go talk to an hispanic laborer like my father was when he came to this country. if you go talk to a single mom who's waiting tables at a diner they've seen the price of milk
go up. price of chicken go up. price of ground beef go up. they had seen until recently the price of gasoline go up. they've seen the price of electricity go up. they've seen their health insurance. they were promised a $2,500 cut. instead they've seen it rise over $3,000 a family. and they have also seen median wages stagnate for some two decades now. if you're a single mom trying to pay the bills and the cost of everything you're spending keeps going up and up and up and up and the one thing that doesn't move is your paycheck every two weeks, you're feeling the consequence of washington's easy money policies. we need stable consistent strong monetary policies.
number eight it is long passed time for us to pass a strong balanced budget amendment. take it up, vote on it and pass it. what we're doing to our kids and grandkids right now, in my view is fundamentally irresponsible. and by the way this is not a particularly conservative view. this is basic common sense. get out of this god forsaken town and go to anywhere in america and talk to real life people. doesn't matter what party. republican, democrat independent, libertarian and lay
out some basic principles live within your means. don't bankrupt our kids and grandkids. follow the constitution. there's not a room in this country outside of washington, d.c. where the entire room wouldn't agree with throws. it's only in washington that when you say we should stop piling debt higher and higher and higher and higher on our kids, that that statement is viewed as radical. extreme extreme. it's only the views of the vast majority of americans. it's only basic common sense. when barack obama became president six years ago, our national debt was just over $10 trillion. today it's $18 trillion. it's larger than the size of our entire economy. once and for all, all of the
republicans who campaigned saying we're going to stop bankrupting our kids and grandkids, let's stand up and follow through and actually do that and the best way to do that is to put in the constitution strong protections to prevent congress from continuing to dig this hole deeper and deeper and deeper. number nine we need to repeal common core. we need to get the federal government out of the business of dictating educational standards. that would be the nsa interested in what we're saying. you know education is far too important for it to on governed by unelected bureaucrats in
washington. it should be at the state level or even better, at the local level. and we need to at the same time embrace and champion school choice for every child in america. every child has a right to access a quality education regardless of race, regardless of ethnicity regardless of religion regardless of socioeconomic status. in my view, school choice is the civil rights issue of the 21st century. i got to say the differences on this issue are stark. new york mayor bill de blasio, one of the first things he did was go up and try to throw young african-american kids out of the schools that were performing for them in harlem. it is a sad thing to see politicians more interested in pleasing the union bosses who are writing checks to him than
taking care of the kids who desperately want hope and a ray of opportunity for the future. it is a sad thing to see the u.s. department of justice coming against young african-american and hispanic kids in louisiana saying we're going to try to shut down your opportunity to get access to a better education. we're coming up on martin luther king day. ry can think of nothing that would be a greater legacy for dr. king than for us to embrace across parties across race, across lines that we are united in saying every kid has a right to a quality education regardless of who they are. and finally we've got to deal
seriously, the twin threats of it isis and a nuclear iran. listen, these are dangerous times times. this past week we've been stunned to see radical islamic terrorists. murdering innocents in paris. our hearts weep for the journalists wrongfully murdered, for the police officers targeted and murdered. for the jewish customers at a grocery store murdered because of who they are. and this is part and parcel of a longer pattern across the globe. in recent months we've seen radical islamic terrorists
attacking in sydney, in canada. in israel hamas terrorists coming in with butcher knives and murdering israeli-american rabbis in synagogue as they prayed. we've seen isis beheading journalists journalists. we've seen the taliban murdering school children in pakistan. we've seen boca ha horam kidnapping little girls. these are not isolated incidents. these are not challenge for law enforcement. this is a concerted radical dangerous attack that seeks to
undermine the very basis of free civilization. look at who they're targeting. journalists. children. police officers. and they don't discriminate between americans, israelis parisians. they target the west. and yet you cannot win a war against radical islamic terrorism with an administration that is unwilling to utter the words radical islamic terrorism. these were not a bunch of ticked-off presbyterians. and we will not effectively combat what we're facing until we acknowledge what we are facing. i will note just recent lyly,
president the president in egypt gave a courageous and important speech. for a muslim leader he stood up and he urged peaceful muslims to stand up against this corruption of their faith. that is urging people to murder in the name of faith. and that starts to lay out. we need allies who will take this on. but i got to say, it is hard to enlist the support of allies when america ceases being a good ally. how sad was it in the streets of paris as 40 world leaders walked down the street, absent was the united states of america.
where was the president? where was the vice president? where was the secretary of state? where was the attorney general who had been there moments before? but chose to get on a plane and fly back home. all of us remember september 11th, 2001. i was living here in washington, d.c. just south of the pentagon. my wife was working in the white house. i remember her having to pull off her shoes and walk barefoot across memorial bridge because she couldn't get to a car. i remember the putrid stink in the air of the smoldering pentagon. i will say in the immediate aftermath of september 11th, nations across the world came and stood with america. nation of france stood with america.
it was sad and unfortunate that we have not seen that same leadership from this administration now. and i would note that that lack of seriousness of purpose, that lack of resolve is profoundly dangerous. it's dangerous because it encourages radical islamic terrorists to redouble their efforts and it is dangerous because nations like iran see that weakness. the single gravest threat to our national security is the threat of iran acquiring nuclear weapon capability. and this administration seems bound and determined to go down the road of a foolhardy deal. indeed, the deputy national security advisor of this administration described that an
iran nuclear deal would be the obamacare of the second term. those are his words. that's a comforting commitment. one of the things i hope we see from this new majority in congress is meaningful oversight and leadership to restore america's leadership in the world. i hope we see congress hold this administration accountable and do everything we can so that we stand with our friends and allies and we demonstrate the resolve that is necessary to stand up to those who pose serious threats to the national security of this country, to those who would seek to murder innocent americans. that's what we need from a republican majority.
is bold, positive leadership on jobs, on liberty on security. we need to demonstrate that we believe the words we said on the campaign trail. we need to demonstrate that we will actually fight for the men and women of america and not simply for the growing, growing, growing power of washington, d.c. that's what this conference is about so i want to close the way i started by simply saying to each of you, thank you. thank you for urging this majority to earn the mandate we've been given. god bless you. >> thank you very much senator cruz. very much appreciate that.
senator cruz has some time for a few questions. just want to do a brief housekeeping update. representative jordan will be here soon and was actually able to get off his plane earlier. so we are going to have representative jordan come up, he'll give a speech about conservative action in this next congress in 2015. then after him we'll have our freshmen members of congress have a panel. as awesome as senator cruz is please also stick around and don't everybody follow him out the door because you're going to learn a lot from these house members about the things that you're going to be hearing about in 2016 and 2017 because of the actions they take on the house floor this year. questions for senator cruz. yes, ma'am. >> senator cruz thank you so much for your time. appreciate it so much. you talked about teeing up legislation top break down obamacare and all these other different things to push something forward. one of our real concerns as a citizens is the leadership
that's going to do it. i do not have confidence in our leadership in the house of representatives or the senate and im -- are we going to have leaders who are going to rise up and do that and really put their mind to it just as businesses trying to reach a goal. do we have senators an congressmen who are going to work towards those goals together? >> it is a great question. what i can tell you is i hope so. i think my -- a lot of people across this country naturally distrust politicians. i think that is a very healthy sense. i think it is easy for those who have been in washington a long time to focus on priorities other than the priorities of the american people. when we were campaigning, obamacare and stopping amnesty were one and two out of the
lipts oflips of virtually every republican candidate. and the voters acted decisively in that direction. what i would encourage our leadership to do is follow through on that. and listen leadership doesn't care what i or any other member of congress says. the best way to get leadership to actually follow through on those commitments is for you is for the men and women in this room, for the people who elected us to make clear that we expect elected officials to follow through. i'll tell you, one of the things i've urged 27 million texans who i represent to do is hold all of us accountable, including me. hold us accountable for the promises we made. and that is the way to maximize
the likelihood that the majority carries through on the promisesby made. i don't know if we will but you have my word i will do everything humanly possible to encourage us to do exactly that. yes, sir. right here. >> >> i'm with the pakistani spectator. first of all thanks for acknowledging the problem in pakistan by killing innocent children. since they are killing more muslim than anybody else and there seem to be fight between iran and soviet, isn't it better to leave them alone and kill each other rather than getting involved with them and making another enemy? and second question, how unrealic is itunreal ic unrealistic it is to defeat sigh
sis. isis. >> the notion that america would go in there and demand reconciliation and consensus between sunni and shiites, who as you know have been vigorously disagreeing since 632 a.d. it is the height of ignorance and hubris. we're not going to do that, and it's not our job to bring about peace and tranquillity. it is our job to protect the national security interest of the united states and our allies. where it becomes a discrete irk u for us is two fold. number one, with regard to isis. they have declared their intention to murder americans, and with the land they have seized roughly the size of
indiana indiana, with the intention of seize qualitative issues. if iran would acquire nuclear weapons capability, in my view, the risks are unacceptably high. that an iranian regime with nuclear weapons would use nuclear weapons opinion and the best case scenario, it sets off a nuclear arms race throughout the middle east as arab countries rush to acquire nuclear weapons to counterbalance the irans and that makes the entire world much more dangerous. i don't think we should do what sometimes the obama administration suggests their objective is which is produce or try to produce political harmony, and cause those who are battling to lay down their arms and sing kumbaya.
i do think we need serious resolve protect this guy. the second question is will this happen with obama in the white house? he may not sign legislation to do that. there are things that today may not be realistic that tomorrow can become realistic with a political movement behind them. i would note if we got in that michael j. fox delorean i made reference to and instead of going back to october 2014 we went back to october 1980, when ronald reagan was running for president at the time. if i were to have told you in october of 1980, if reagan gets elected he's going to pass fundamental tax reform with the democrats, with tip o'neill. he's going to cut the top marginal rate from 70% down to
28% 28%. the economy is going to grow from what had been four years of stag nation averaging less than 1% growth to by 1984 the economy will grow 7.2% a year booming growth lifting millions out of poverty and opportunity. if i would have said that then the answer would have been, that's not realistic at all. if i would have said in october 1980, when the learned observers were saying the soviet union is unstoppable, when the president was saying, we need to accept malaise. if i would have told you that president reagan is going to rebuild our military and put so much pressure on the soviet union, that the soviet union will collapse and the berlin wall will be torn to the ground in october 1980, the answer would have been, that's not realistic at all. come now, how can you say such a
thing? i agree, abolishing the irs is major reform. but i don't think it's anywhere near as difficult as what we were able to accomplish in the 1980s, and i also believe if the american people say enough is enough is enough we can fund our federal government we don't have to empower bureaucrats over our lives that the impossible becomes possible with the american people. i think we have time for one more question. sorry, right here, back here? >> with the current administration releasing u.s. enemies from gitmo and trying to put general petraeus in jail, is it too provocative to ask whether there's a question as to which side we're on? >> you know, i would frame it a
little different. which is this administration has a difficult time differentiating good guys from bad guys. one of the striking things as you travel the world is our friends and allies quite consistent will pull you aside, defense ministers, foreign ministers, and in hushed tones they will say, where is america? what has happened? look we saw this just yesterday in paris. quite literally where is america? for six years, we have abandoned our friends and allies.i and at the same time -- and that has been true across the globe, by the way, whether it is france. whether it is can dark our largest trading partner, where
this administration has blocked the keystone pipeline for years despite the thousands of jobs it would generate both in canada and the united states. whether it is the united kingdom exemplified by the opening weeks of the administration, sending churchill's bus back. or whether it is the shameful treatment of the nation of israel. the obama administration has been the most antagonistic administration to the nation of israel in history. consistently, this administration has refused to stand by our friends and allies. and at the same time, when it comes to our enemies, when it comes to the bad guys whether
it is thugs like putin who you will recall the administration began by cancelling the anti-ballistic missile batteries and pole anned and czech republic in an effort to appease -- we all recall the presidents words to mr. medvedev, tell putin i'll have more flexibility after the election. . how's that worked out. or whether it is the treatment of iran, we're allowing billions of dollars to flow into iran, while they continue do build centrifuges and enrich uranium. whether it is recently the nation of cuba, where the president suddenly embraced the castro communist regime that has murdered and tortured its citizens.
doing so in a way that caused the castros to celebrate their embrace from the president. or whether it is when it comes to radical islamic terrorists former secretary of state hillary clinton saying we need a little more empathy. no, we don't need empathy for radical islamic terrorists. we need the resolve to stop them them. the consistent pattern is this administration is unable or unwilling to distinguish between friends and foe. and the sad reality right now is our friends do not trust us. and our enemies do not fear us. that is a dangerous state of affairs for the united states.
and it's a dangerous state of affairs for the world. and it needs to change. >> thank you, folks. we're going to go right on in to our next panel now. it's not a panel, it's a speech. and i'm going to begin now by introducing jim jordan. after everyone gets through with their pictures. >> we will breakaway here on c-span3, we're going to take you live to capitol hill for a markup session at the u.s. house -- the house of representatives rules committee. they're going to be working on a couple bills, specifically at the homeland security spending measure that could include amendments blocking the president's executive order on immigration. also marking up legislation dealing with the dodd-frank┌ty
legislation. the financial regulations. the rules committee should get underway shortly. live coverage here on c-span 3. just a note about our coverage from heritage. we will have more tomorrow from heritage, so look at c-span.org for our coverage schedule. and the speeches that you saw today, be able to see those on c-span.org as well. the u.s. house is gaveling in at this moment, this afternoon, they will take up a bill that will ask the veterans affairs department to evaluate mental health care, and a program for psychiatrists who serve the va. the senate is in at 5:30 this afternoon, they will have a procedural vote on moving forward with the bill approving the keystone xl oil pipeline coming at 5:30 eastern you can follow that on