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tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  December 22, 2011 10:00am-1:00pm EST

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where we are over leverage. we will have sluggish economic growth. we need to get on the first rail for us to solve this problem, and that is by being a political leader. in this era, being a governor is a lot tougher job. we cannot be on the third rail any more to do this. host: robert kaplan is our guest. rich has the last call. cleveland, ohio. caller: thank you for taking my call. i enjoyed c-span. instead of cutting social to your the, medicare, and medicaid, why don't they get out of these wars that costas $2 trillion and bring our troops home? we have to quit being the policemen of the world. guest: the caller also makes a good point. if you know as national leaders that we are over leveraged, the
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fact of the matter is diplomacy are is a lot less expensive than war. sometimes you have to fight a war, but it has to be taken into account, and this caller is right. this is all about choices. we have made choices over the last 10 years. we cut taxes dramatically, fought two wars. we made national choices, and now we're living with the consequences. we now need to move forward and make new choices and move this country forward. that is what our leaders and all of us need to do. host: what one thing did you learn in putting together this book? guest: it reminded me again that asking a question and being able to bore in on it is 90% of the battle. political leaders, business leaders get into trouble because we get isolated and we stopped asking questions. once you start down the road of asking questions, i am confident
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it may take you some time and it may be messy, but you will eventually get to solutions. host: robert kaplan, thank you for being with us. guest: thanks for having me. host: you can get more information by logging on to the new labels website, robert kaplan, our guest, being a co- founder. what will john boehner do next? yesterday's editorial in "the washington post," calling this a republican fiasco. we expect to learn more. we will be joined by congressman eric cantor. along with congressman kevin brady of texas, congressman bomber from north carolina, -- tom reed of new york, greg walden of oregon. those are the eight appointed by the speaker of the house to serve as conferees in this
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process. we heard from harry reid yesterday indicating he will not call back the senate, asking the house to pass the compromise. the senate voted on saturday, 89-10. we will hear from the president at 12:15 this afternoon. it is an event that was put together the last minute, as the president will talk about what $40 will mean for your paycheck, the estimated annual savings for the individual earning $50,000 a year. the president says he will stay here in washington, will not go to hawaii until the issue is resolved. he asked the speaker to accept the compromise and move ahead with stipulation that the house senate conferees will work out a longer-term agreement by the end of january or early february. a lot happening in washington in what was supposed to be a relatively quiet christmas week. the speaker of the house will come to the podium in just a moment. we'll have live coverage and we
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will be covering the president at about 2:15 this afternoon. a reminder, c-span's "contenders" series all this week. check it out online at c-span board. i hope you have a good thursday. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
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>> as you heard, we are waiting for speaker john boehner to come out after a meeting of his conferees on the payroll tax cut legislation. the senate over the weekend passed a short, a two-month extension, but the other day, the house blocked that measure guest we expect to hear an updae from not only speaker boehner, but ma -- minority whi steadyp hoyer and other democrats as well. the president will speak about it at 12:15. throughout it all, we will take your phone calls. in just a bit, you can get set to dial and we will tell you the numbers here on c-span.
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>> good morning, everyone. yesterday i spoke with president obama. i urged him to call on senator reid to work with us to finish this bill that will provide for one a year of tax relief for american workers. i told the president there is one big reason why we need to do a full year. a one-year bill, like the president requested and like the house produced, is better for jobs and our economy. a one-year bill provides on average about $1,000 for american workers, as opposed to the senate go, which would provide a measly $166. a one-year bill would provide certainty for american employers
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as they began to plan for next year. a two-month extension only perpetuates the uncertainty that too many employers already have in dealing with the economy and what is coming out of washington. listen, i used to run a small business. i can tell you that the language in the senate bill will hurt small businesses. the senate only goes for two months, businesses send their taxes in -- i used to write the check to the irs -- but it is done on a quarterly basis. a couple months of this, another month of this, trying to figure out what your obligation is is going to be difficult. secondly, the paper work requirements in the -- and of the programming requirements contained in the senate bill will make it virtually impossible for those who provide payroll services to do the job that employers hired them to do. the fact is we can do better.
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americans are still asking the question, where are the jobs? it is time for us to sit down and have a serious negotiation and solve this problem so that american workers don't see their taxes go up in january. >> good morning. as the speaker said, it is our position that we want to make sure we provide some certainty to the working people of this country that taxes are not going to go up for an entire year. unfortunately, that view, although it is shared, is not being implemented or proposed to be implemented by the senate proposal. we are here and we want to solve the problem. frankly, given where the parties are, there is not a big difference between our positions. it all comes down to the budgetary impact of the extension of the tax holiday. i saw the president out yesterday during his christmas shopping. he brought his dog with him. you know, we are here. he can bring his dog up here.
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we are pet-friendly. we can probably resolve the differences within an hour. that is why we are here to say let's do this, as the speaker said. let's avoid any uncertainty. let's avoid another one of these difficult moments within 60 days so we can get on with the business of putting in place a better economy and job creation. >> good morning. dave camp. employers are telling us that the convoluted mechanism descended cooked up in a rush to get out of town and doesn't work. we think we should listen to our employers. the democrats failed to do that in the health-care bill and that is how we ended up with their burdens in provision in the bill that we had to rebuild. people in my district are working this week, working next week. we think we should be doing that in congress. of our economy -- let's get this
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right for the sake of our economy, traders, and the american worker. >> hello. renee ellmers, north carolina, district 2. you know, these are the differences. there are a lot of yeses for our bill, a lot of nos for the senate bill. we keep hearing about the democrats in the house and how they were four dead year extension of the pet -- they were for that year extension of the payroll tax holiday, and yet all but 10 of voted no on this bill. how can you explain that? how can you before the american people and yet -- be for the american people and yet vote no. we all agree on a year payroll tax extension holiday. yet they sent back to us a two-
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month extension, which numbers of groups have said is not good policy and it will not work for our employers or employees. national payroll reporting consortium, a nonpartisan group, has said this is going to be more difficult to implement for employers and a very difficult for employees. that is not the way to go. what about our seniors? we passed in our bill two years worth of a doc fix so that physicians would not have cut medicare reimbursements cut. our seniors need to know that they can receive that good health care and continue to do so. we get back two months. not only is that an issue, it is an issue because what happens with that, as the medicare reimbursement payments to come in, there has to be a resetting its face. there will be a couple of months, a couple of weeks at least, where physicians will not be reimbursed.
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it is very difficult as employers, as small business owners, to deal with. we cannot in the house of representatives cause more problems ifor the american peope in this obama economy. this is his economy, and we are trying hard here to fix it. it is time to come to the table and sit down. i want to ask those senators why you would vote for such a short- term lack of resolution to go into the new year so that you can go home for the holidays. thank you. >> good morning, everyone. kevin brady from texas. one of the questions we get in washington these days is why haven't you gone home by now? these are principles worth fighting for. they had a real attack on real people, and especially on our economy -- real impact on real people, and especially on our economy. i spoke to local small business
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people. one told me that these short- term extensions are so hard on the patients, heart on the doctors, they are hard on his small business. he says there are fewer and fewer doctors to see medicare patients these days, and this only makes it worse. for him and other local doctors, the house bill, which extends these payments for two years, is world better than the senate bill and the uncertainty for two months. i talk to a family-own business owner. they built this small business from seven workers to 46. he says a two-month extension creates real peril problems for his small business -- real payroll problems for his small business and no incentives to hire. he says he wants to hire one or two new plumbers.
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he said they were frustrated. they told him two months, that is no help. if congress is truly thinking about the people and workers, they anwould stay and get this done for the full year. i spoke to someone on his fifth tour of duty in afghanistan. they have three girls. she works full time did she said, "are you kidding me? might i spent up for afghanistan. he is not going on vacation -- my husband and left for afghanistan. he is not going on vacation." she doesn't understand why senate democrats want comeback and work with republicans to solve this problem now. i don't know where the political winds are blowing. what republicans are worried about our where the economic winds are blowing along main street. this uncertainty from the senate
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bill causes real problems. until we create certainty for small business owners to hire, invest in new buildings, equipment, and software, we will not see this economy moving forward. that is why republicans are here in washington, willing to sit down at table to solve this problem now, because it is critical to our economy. >> i am greg walden from oregon. i chair the communications and technology subcommittee. we are not doing this for the politics. you pointed that out to us pretty clearly not go there is a reason we are here fighting this fight, and it is over the policies in a vault. you heard from my colleagues about the effect it will have on small business. i was a small business owner with my wife for 20 years. i know what it is like to do it quarterly. i know about the uncertainty and frustration when government acts on a short-term political bases. we want long-term solutions. in this legislation, which the
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house passed in a bipartisan manner, it includes a an enormous buildup in spectrum. high-tech innovators could acquire it and create literally hundreds of thousands of new jobs. we would pay for the buildout with a broadband interoperable public safety network that the 9/11 commission says is long overdue. that is in the bill that the house passed that the senate has stripped the provisions out of. there are important to job creation opportunities in the house-passed bill. there are important public safety provisions in the house- passed bill. our job is to work out differences with the house and the senate. we should sit down with negotiators of both sides and do just that. >> good morning. nan hayworth from new york's 19th district, beautiful hudson valley. the reason i am not in the hudson valley today is i am here with colleagues, all of home
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care very much about the american people. we are the immediate voice of the american people. we have received word from organizations representing small businesses, representing america's job creators across the country. i am going to point out the national federation of independent businesses, which, as you know, represents -- is representative and a voice for thousands and thousands of small businesses across the country. they say at two-month tax holiday presents publications and costs that would disproportionately affect small business. two months versus one year. common sense tells you that want year is far better. the president himself has been a strong advocate for a year-long table packs holiday extension bid -- the year-long payroll tax holiday extension. seniors are facing devastating cuts in medicare reimbursements
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that will make access extremely difficult. health-care providers have begged us not to keep kicking the can down the road, to use a familiar cliches. we are tired of hearing that cliche and tired of seeing that done. millions of americans are working through the holiday to put food on the table and take care of their families. we care about them, we are with them, and that is why we are here. we want to work over the remaining days of the year to get the best possible arrangement that we can for the american people to grow jobs, to lift it burdens, to provide them with assurance as we move forward. >> i am tom price. i represent the sixth district of georgia and am a privilege to chair the republican policy committee. everyone knows that jobs in the economy is the number-one issue across this great land. if you talk to job creators, small and large businesses, they
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said in a one reason is they are unable to hire is because of the uncertainty in the market. as a physician, i can tell you that the uncertainty in doctor'' offices and hospitals across the country is great. the house bill attempts to provide certainty. a two-year fixed to the component, the reimbursement mechanism for physicians, for caring for a senior patients. the senate bill, the other side, says two months is ok. i can tell you that as a physician, we scheduled procedures out months in advance, 3, four, five, six months in advance. seniors will not have the kind of access to care that they so desperately need. what is often times missed in this argument, or this discussion, is that hospitals and physicians' offices are often at the no. 1 or no. 2 employer in counties in this land. when physicians don't have that kind of certainty, they will of necessity have to lay people off. this is a job-destructive the
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measure as it relates to physician reimbursement. for a certainty for seniors, for a certainty for families, for certainty for job creators, a year for the payroll tax extension holiday and the federal unemployment benefits, two years for the sgr fix, is absolutely vital. we urge our senate colleagues to come back. let's get this done before the end of the year. >> tom reed, new york. over the last 24 hours, i have been asked to the question, "what are you fighting for?" my response is twofold. one, we are fighting to change the way washington operates. the senate package, and what the president is advocating for us to accept as good policy for america, is adopted to the lens of washington, d.c. -- doing what is politically
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convenient, and in order to comply with vacation plans these. it is time that we lead in the house, time that we lead in washington, d.c., and look at it from the point of view of people back home who have to live with these policies. you have heard from my colleagues. they have heard from some many people who say that this proposal is just not workable. there are major substantive differences between the senate and house bill that are common sense provisions that all americans will agree with. take on the planet, for example. we proposed in that house -- take unemployment, for example we proposed in the house that employers drug-screen people for employment. in my district, one tells me, but we spend thousands of dollars to reemploy people to get back to work, and then when
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they go in and take the drug screening test, they fail. what a waste." a simple proposal is that people have to get a ged. we care about americans and want them to get back to work and want to give them the tools to do so. that is what the bill is all about. i asked that we get it done. we have plenty of time. join us to do the work for the american people. they deserve it. >> fred upton from michigan. there is no reason why we cannot get this thing done right. yes, there are a lot of similarities in the bill. we know we have to resolve the doctor fix, we have teeth down in both bills. it -- we have keystone in both bills. there is no reason we cannot sit down together and negotiate a settlement that makes sense so we don't have to address it again in the manner of a couple more weeks.
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that is an important thing for all of us here. we have seen these sparring press conferences. it seems that democrats are trailing us wherever we go. i understand the minority leader will be here within the hour speaking maybe from the same podium. ask him the question -- why aren't you appointing conferees rather than spending time talking past each other on areas where you agree or disagree? why can we sit down together and negotiate these differences -- why can't we sit down together and negotiate these differences and get a solution that works for american families, working families, all across the country as they get ready for the christmas holiday? we can do this. i am sure we can come to an agreement, rather than simply punting the ball into the next year. let's get it done and eight get it done right. >> would you acknowledge, sir,
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that the outside criticism from conservatives is growing louder, and regardless of policy, the political brand of your party is being hurt? >> politics will be politics. our team believes it is always right to do the best thing. and the fact is, as i have told my colleagues, what my parents taught me and what i talked to my kids about one at they were growing up -- if you do the right things for the right reasons, the right things will happen. all we are fighting for is what everybody has already agreed to. let's sit down and resolve the .ifferences gues you >> you say you are doing this because the american people need a certainty. aren't you worried that it is creating more uncertainty here? >> we are ready to work, we need somebody to work with. >> are republicans getting
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killed in public opinion? "there is no question." john mccain -- "is bad for the republican party." "-- wall street " -- "wall street journal" -- "might wind up reelecting a president." wall street "' journal' editorial hit the nail on the head office are they all wrong? >> we are fighting to do the right thing. leader pelosi, mr. hoyer, senator reid, senator schumer -- we needed to extend these policies for a year. we agree with them. to just kick the can down the
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road because, oh, my goodness, we're getting close to christmas, is not the right thing for the american people. >> if there was some sort of compromise, do you think you could move this bill with a minority of your conference -- let me restate that, not a minority of your conference -- would you have more democratic votes? the senate bill would pass without some republicans and a lot of democrats. would you be willing -- with some republicans and a lot of democrats. would you be willing -- >> i don't believe that to be the case. nothing will happen until we have somebody to sit down with and negotiate. this is why i told president obama yesterday to call senator reid to appoint conferees. one more. >> many of you mentioned to the quarterly reporting. would you be willing to have a
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three-month extension? >> we need people to sit down and work with. we are not willing to sit down and negotiate with ourselves. i ask sen. reid to appoint conferees from the senate side said that we can resolve our differences quickly. thank you, everybody. >> will you be here for christmas? speaker >> john boehner and his -- >> speaker john boehner, and his eight conferees to a conference that has not gotten underway yet, not been made official the congress is where they worked at this time last week. , of men in the u.s. house. we will ask you -- no movement
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in the u.s. house. we will ask you today -- are expecting to hear from steny hoyer and democrats shortly -- should speaker boehner accept the senate version of the payroll tax legislation? we have a poll at facebook.com/cspan, and we will take your phone calls. please make sure you mute your television when you call in. john in birmingham, alabama, on our republicans' line. >> do you -- howard stern's -- >> next call. >> a couple of points to make.
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in democracy, it's supposed to be majority vote, majority rule, and they that is come up on -- they will let this come up for up or down passage. i am a construction worker and we do a lot of employment, seasonal. the republicans are bringing in big government. drug testing? that should not be the government's call. ged? i work with a lot of people who don't have a ged or high-school diploma. >> the drug testing you're talking about, part of the changes that would be made? >> correct. >> if the deal is not reached by december 31, your paycheck could go up, probably will go up slightly because of the table tax cut -- payroll tax cut. medicare payments to doctors could be cut.
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san diego. frances is an independent there. >> i would like to make comment, please. i think boehner and cantor needed to be impeached or held for treason. they are killing the american way. i am an 84-year-old woman. i have never seen anything as ridiculous as what is going on today in the house of representatives. >> they had said a couple of times that the house, we have already passed our bill, the bill that passed a week and half ago, which would extend it for a year. >> no, they passed it with the keystone project included in it, which is not something that has been steady or tested -- studied were tested it for the environment and other publications that would occur. >> although that would be part of it if they took up the senate
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legislation. john in florida, he is a republican. >> i have a very serious problem with the way the democrats handled this whole thing. it seems that every time you get something that is critical, it is unfair way or the highway. in this case, it is not only their way or the highway, is in their way and they went on a highway, they left before anything could be resolved. i think boehner is absolutely doing the right thing, at a two- month extension is not appropriate. a one-year extension is appropriate. the president asked for it. why isn't the president standing up for that now? it is very confusing to me. one other minor point is the democrats keep saying we are going to save the taxpayers 160 million taxpayers, $1,000 a year
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by extending this. >> right. >> my math comes out to about $166, because it is only a two- year extension. >> you are talking about -- >> two-month extension. i don't know my math the way i was taught when i went to school. >> we hope to hear from democrats -- steny hoyer, chris van hollen, and others. they were the two on the floor of the house yesterday when the house ostensibly came in for a pro forma session. leader hoyer tried to get the recognition of the speaker pro tem as he walked on the floor to the house is back tomorrow for another pro forma session. that is 10:00 tomorrow on c- span. new york, democrats' line.
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>> the name is leo. i would like the democrats to stop playing gotcha games. they ask for a one-year extension, settle for a two- month extension. that is ridiculous, you know what i mean? >> mary in atlanta, independent line. >> my thoughts are it is time for the senate and house to grow up and do what they are paid to do. they have to resolve this. as a small-business owner and a cpa, it is absurd what they are proposing on both sides. if they have not resolved this according to the president wants done, the senate should be back in d.c. and the president should have the gumption, the courage, and what it takes to be president to call them back in and get this resolved. he wanted a year. they gave him a year. tell all to grow up and come
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home. >> you say you are a cpa. if this happens, a two-month extension, how does this complicate your business? >> it is a nightmare. >> tell us why. >> on social security, you have in mind that is one percentage -- irs is going to have to create all new forms. two months at one rate, one month at another rate the biggest issue is the bird is placing on any accountant, any business that does their payroll in-house. how accurate is it going to be? at what point are we going to have to pay fines and everything else for it not being completed correctly? we had this snafu last year with unemployment having different rates. you have to calculate part of the year at this rate, part of the year at that rate. >> if you had your druthers on a
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professional level, would you rather they brought the rate back to 6.2%, or extended for another two years? >> they should have it at 6.2%, and if they want a tax cut, it should be a true income tax fund and not mickey mouse it around with the social security funds. >> more of your calls to come. we are hoping to hear from leader hoyer, chris van hollen, and other democrats, and the president at 12:15 eastern. reminder, too, that you can participate in our facebook poll. speakerasking ashould boehner accept the senate version of the legislation? facebook.com/cspan. the pro forma session from yesterday -- it wasn't a very long trip here is what happened. >> the terror leads before the
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house of communication from the speaker -- the chair leaves before the house a communication from the speaker. >> i hereby appoint the hon. michael fitzpatrick to act as speaker pro tem this day, signed, john boehner, speaker of the house of representatives. >> the prayer will be offered by the guest chaplain. >> let us pray. gracious god -- >> we are having some technical problems with that video. we apologize. you can find it in our video library at c-span.org. we hope to show that to you in just a bit. we showed you a short while ago speaker boehner and the eight republican conferees. we understand that leader hoyer is coming to the briefing gallery. we will take you there live now. >> mary christmas. -- merry christmas.
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we are here to talk about have been here for -- 160 million americans. -- talk about how happy new year for 160 million americans treat it as in two days since the house gave and that no to the compromise and walked away from the american people. while democrats have spent that time trying to avoid a tax hike, republicans have been arguing about process and politics. beforeon't get this done january 1, a very short time, taxes will go up for 160 million middle-class working americans. the unemployment benefits will expire over the next 60 days for 2.3 million americans. and 48 million americans, seniors on medicare, will have the security of having their doctors available put at risk. we ought not to be creating that
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kind of uncertainty and anxiety among the american people. the stakes are too high to be arguing about politics and process. republicans' contention that the two-month compromise is somehow unworkable is simply untrue. if it were, we would not see a desperate proposal today to settle on a three-month extension. speaker boehner says he and his members want a one-year extension. we want that, to. the house passed a bill but he talks about regular order. that bill adds no hearings in the ways and means committee, it had no markups in the ways and means committee, and was past three days after it was introduced, in the middle of december, just days ago. but he expected, i suppose, the senate to take it home.
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they didn't. what did the senate do? they did what americans are asking us to do. they came together, reason to together, and voted together. 89 senators came together and said we ought to pass a compromise to give us time to work out any differences that remain. a free -- every family in america understands that. take a breath, stand back, let's see where we can get to where we want to be. let's enact a bipartisan compromise, however, to eliminate uncertainty for american families and then get right to work. -- and then get right to work on a one-year version. not wait until february, not walk away, at not hold off until the last minute. let us not have a conference while we hold hostage 160 million americans with fear that
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their taxes will go up on january 1. let us not hold hostage 48 million seniors who will fear that their doctors will not be available to them. let us not hold hostage 2.3 million americans who don't have a job, are looking for a job, what to work, and have the fear that they will have the resources to support themselves and their families. the american people are waiting. they are watching closely and intensely. -- intently. there was a cartoon in "the washington post" today -- speaker boehner said "you didn't get 12 presents under the tree, so i will take away the two presents you've got." let's give them the two prisons, and let's work on
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giving -- let's give them the two presents, and let's work on giving in on the other 10 presence. that is what everybody in this country, including "the wall street journal" think we ought to do. perhaps that is not what wash limbaugh -- rush limbaugh and grover norquist think we ought to do, but that is what the american people want us to do. sometimes you make an agreement on what you can agree on and continue to work on that on which you cannot. chris van hollen of maryland. >> thank you, mr. hoyer, and thank you all for joining us today. like you, i listened to the speaker of the house, who was just at this podium a short time ago. as i heard his remarks, it was very clear that he is not listen to the american people. just like the house republicans did not listen to the american people when they threatened to
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have the united states default on its debts for the first time in its history, just like they have not listened to the american people when it comes to taking up the jobs bill that the president sent to the congress many, many months ago and they have refused to act on a. that is not really surprising anymore. but you would have thought maybe, just maybe, they would listen to some of the senate republican colleagues. 80% of whom voted for a bipartisan compromise to make sure that 160 million americans didn't see a tax increase come january, who worked together on a bipartisan basis to make sure that 2.2 million americans will lose unemployment benefits because they cannot find a job through no fault of their own, and making should the millions on medicare will have a doctor. senate republican colleagues worked together to do that. we have heard from the editorial page of "the wall street journal," we have heard from karl rove.
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in fact, virtually the entire country, with the exception of the speaker of house and individuals at this podium a few minutes ago, recognize that the right thing to do is to provide certainty and make sure that the payroll taxes don't go to january 1. the way to do that is to take up the bipartisan senate bill. in fact, they should not have been at this podium. we should all be upstairs in the chamber of the house of representatives. that is where the people's house transacts its business. if you go up there right now, you find the main doors are locked. there is no speaker in the chair. there is nobody presiding. yesterday, mr. hoyer and i went to the floor of the house, we asked for unanimous consent to bring out the bipartisan senate bill. we could have had this bill to the president's desk last night. if we open up the house chamber and take up the bill, the bipartisan bill, we can have the
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bill to the president's desk tonight. the keys to the stores are in their hands, and the keys to this problem are in hands, and it is very simple. everybody in the country knows this is not democrats and versus republicans. this is senate democrats, senate republicans, the president, and the american people saying to the house republicans, "what are you doing here, letting the clock run down and raising taxes on 160 million americans?" test and last word about his comments of the president's -- just a last word about his comments of the president of the united states. it is the last refuge of a party that cannot get its work done to start pointing fingers at other people. the bipartisan bill is not at the white house. the president is not sitting on a bipartisan bill. the bipartisan senate bill is right here in the united states congress. the speaker of the house and the
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republican majority have the power to bring that bill up. let's get the work done. the president is waiting. he has made it very clear he will sign it. we could put this whole issue to rest by this evening, if thhe e house republican leadership would move out of the press room and move upstairs to the floor of a house and into the american people's business. that is what we should do it then of course we should get on to extend the tax cut for the full year. the president came to the house of representatives in september and asked for a year-long extension of the tax cut. the speaker of the house and republican leadership said no, they thought it was a bad idea. interesting to hear them say today that is so important to the economy. that is what the president and house democrats were saying for months. go check the record. they be little to the idea of the payroll tax cut. -- belittled the idea of the
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cold-year payroll tax cut. they have a whole different story. they recognize the american people knew that he raised payroll taxes right now, it would hurt the american economy. people got tired of hearing a breaks fort tax the wealthiest americans while refusing to pass a tax break for 160 million americans. that is why they changed their tune. now they come here and say, boy, you should do what we said we shouldn't do. we also know that if you don't get this done now, you will see taxes go up on 160 million americans in just a very few days. let's not let that happen. speaker boehner and the house republicans have it within their power to go up and open those doors, past the bipartisan bill, and get the job done. now it is a privilege to
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introduce my colleague, xavier becerra, vice chairman of the democratic caucus. >> this latest republican overreach is so hard to comprehend that it is breathtaking. just three days short of christmas, nine days short of watching 160 million americans see their taxes increase, i think the citizens of this country are listening, and they are watching. i am going to choose my words very carefully. the house republican plan to scuttle the deal to help middle- class families is irresponsible and wrong. what is playing out in washington, d.c. this week is about political leverage, not about what is good for the american people. there is no reason to hold up the short-term extension while a more comprehensive deal. -- while a more comprehensive
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deal is being worked out. the refusal to compromise threatens benefits for those out of work. it angers me that house republicans would rather continue playing politics than find solutions. their actions will hurt american families and be detrimental to our fragile economy. speaker boehner is under enormous pressure. he has gotten a lot of feedback from many republicans who say we just don't want the payroll tax cut. as a matter fact, many republicans would say we really don't want the extension of the unemployment compensation for the rest of -- anyway, congress can work out a solution without extending the payroll tax extension for the middle class, without jeopardize in seniors'
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access to health care or threatening unemployment insurance. i want to choose my words carefully, so instead of using my own words, i was just using the words of senator richard lugar, senator dean heller, and senator scott brown. let me use the words of ordinary americans. $40 per paycheck is the difference between my family finding a way to pay my mortgage payment each month and losing our home. that is from a citizen in youngstown, ohio. $40 means the difference to me in buying gas or paying my electric bill. i am disabled, so i am on a very tight monthly income -- an american from forest grove, oregon. $40 a paycheck allows my son to have hot lunch at school -- a citizen in honolulu, hawaii.
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and from a citizen in alaska -- it means a home cooked meal for my family of five, it means new shoes for two of my kids. i think americans are listening, and americans are speaking, including republicans, who say it is time for us to get this done, to move forward. we believe that every member of congress in the house and senate can deal with a two-month extension. everyone should know how to walk and chew gum, including those who have to process these payroll tax cut claims. let's get on with this. we are three days from christmas, nine days from seeing one of the largest tax increases on americans who work in our history. it is time to get this done bit with that, let me yield to the ranking democrat on the ways and means committee, sander levin. >> i am fourth, because i am
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supposed to do cleanup. our message is clear. republicans should come back to washington and clean up the mess it they are creating for millions and millions of people. these numbers are so stark -- these are the magic numbers -- 160, 2.2, and 48 million. let me quote -- we have quoted senators. let me quote republicans in the house. tim johnson -- "my republican colleagues are flat out wrong." rep gibson -- "i plan to support the two-month stopgap to make sure our constituents do not face a tax increase." the republican house leadership will not let people vote on that they should come back and let us do so. we have introduced a bill -- it
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has now, i think, 178 sponsors on it -- >> 180. >> 180. now the republicans needed to join in and not give a holiday gift to millions and millions of americans of an empty box. essentially, they are saying to taxpayers, it is an empty box. to the millions looking for work and cannot find it, and are threatened with the cut off of their unemployment insurance, a is an empty box. and for seniors who want a doctor to see, it is an empty box. i went home yesterday, and i was doing an interview. an anchor at one of the stations -- he should remain nameless,
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because i was somewhat surprised -- essentially yelled out in front of the entire group of their, "what do the house republicans in the world think they are doing?" what they are doing is shorting the needs of millions of people. we are here to say to the speaker, let us vote. you know why he does not want us to vote? because it would pass. >> thank you very much, mr. van hollen, mr. becerra, mr. levin. is not about politics. it is not even about policy. it is about trying to make sure that bad things to do not happen to good people 10 days from now. the senate has agreed overwhelmingly, the democrats in the house of representatives to
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a person support this extension, it unanimously supports this extension. the president of the united states supports this extension. which means that if you try to make percentages of it, and 4/5 of the decision makers agree on moving this forward now. to prevent habad things happening from good people. yes, we can deal with the politics, but let us not hold hostage those 160 million, 2.2 million, 48 million people over the next nine days until one side is bludgeoned, which is what is being attempted, into agreeing on that which 4/5 of the decision makers have said we don't have agreement on. we do have agreement on this. let's move forward. questions. >> senate minority leader mcconnell has come out with a compromise. he says that if harry reid would
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agree to appoint conferees, house republicans would agree to a two-month extension. what is your reaction to that? would you support that as a compromise? >> from what you have just told me -- chris has his blackberry trying to show me what senator mcconnell said -- what you tell me is that if senator reid will appoint conferees, the conferees will agree to a two-month extension. >> mcconnell said that if he will appoint conferees, the house would agree to the two- month extension. >> ok -- [laughter] sandy levin raises a good question. there is little doubt -- a republican staffer in the senate says clearly that senator mcconnell and not have made this agreement -- would not have made this agreement it speaker
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boehner told him he would be opposed to it. i don't know whether it senator mccain -- excuse me, senator mcconnell -- can speak on behalf of speaker boehner. i don't think speaker boehner has said that yet, but certainly he would respond to that question. we will see what he has to say. >> house republicans just stood here and told us that if democrats would just come back, you all would work out your differences in an hour and get a year-long tax cut. why not do that? >> if we could just work out our differences -- they passed a bill. how did they try to work out the differences? no hearings, no markups, just past eight pit just jam it through, knowing full well that it was designed to fail. what happened when it went to the senate? harry reid tried to put it on the floor and say, okay, here is they're building it who objected to putting it on the
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floor? -- here is they're bill. who objected to putting it on the floor? republicans. when the senate bill to the house -- when the senate bill came to the house, they precluded the vote on the senate bill. when speaker boehner says "just come together," very frankly, his bill did not attempt to do that. he knew it was not acceptable to the senate or the president. they passed a bill which they knew was not going to pass. >> by the difference is really that small? >> our differences are not that small. there are substantial differences, which all members of the ways and means committee would be able to answer. he is going to give an example right now. i knew he would. no, our differences are not that small, which is why the senate, in trying to get to an agreement between senator mcconnell, all r lettereid, -- sen. reid, with
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speaker boehner's participation, could not come to an agreement. we are not going to hold hostage to these folks until we get to an agreement. >> there was a one-word pass between mr. camp and myself. he never said a word. they eliminate 40 weeks of unemployment insurance, a federal unemployment insurance. a small difference? it would have reduced the maximum weeks in michigan for the unemployed looking for work to 46 weeks. bill, and then sit down, have a conference, and work out differences that are significant. >> on that point, because i heard the republican majority leader say the differences were very small in these negotiations. it is just not true. that is make-believe.
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the reality is that there were some big differences. let's remember, again, that the house republicans were opposed to 01-year payroll tax cut. but they realized politically that they had to do it, so they decided to use that opportunity to try to get all of these other extraneous, and related provisions through. even today, they don't support the payroll tax cut for itself. they continue to want to use it in negotiations to further other objectives, just like they tried to use the debt ceiling to further other objectives. there was one agreement. the argument was started by the president in the sense that he said let's do it all 1 a-year tax cut extension. republicans have said no, and that is why republicans and democrats got together and work
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out two months. senator mcconnell has join with the other republican senators on calling on the speaker of the house to pass the senate compromise bill. that is the bottom line. >> ask them a question. how does this plan b different substance to plan a? how will it differ in terms of the lives of the american people who are about to have their taxes increase? you have to jump over three go throughad of three tunnels. i do not think the american people care. they want to know what of they are saying that is different now. we are ready to do something. we saw the negotiations occur.
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time is running out. the clock is ticking. before christmas, before january 1, let's get this done. >> senator reid said he would do exactly what senator mcconnell said. we will pass it. >> on saturday, you released a statement that said two-month extension is wholly inadequate. that was on saturday. now we are here on thursday and now this is the right way to go. >> we want a two-month extension so that we can work out the provisions, including unemployment insurance. what is in the two months needs some further review, i think,
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but it has to pass for us to have that. >> you were wrong on saturday? no. i was right. i want the unemployment insurance for their review. after two months, during these two months, we will do exactly that. >> all of you folks have covered congress. the american people operate on this theory every day. they cannot reach agreement right now. they make some interim agreement for the next day or the day after and say, "we are going to solve this problem." we do that all the time. frankly, we have done it 22 times keeping the faa operating, because we cannot reach agreement. unfortunately, there are a lot of politics there. it has to do with holding workers hostage to a labor provision the republicans do not like. that aside, when we cannot come
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to agreement on a full year's appropriations bill, what do we do? we pass a short-term one. this is not unusual. everybody says what you ought to do is pass the full year. if you cannot pass the full year, make sure that those 160 million americans, the 2.2 million americans, the 48 million americans, are not heard in the process. it is not likely have fallen in love with the two-month extension. we have not. what we have said, however, we are not going to be party to hurting those people in the end from while we tried to reach agreement on what we think is the correct objective -- hurting those people while we try to reach an agreement. >> within the two months it would be in effect -- the democrats support reducing unemployment 79 weeks? >> there are things in this bill, as we pointed out, that we
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had to make concessions on. that is the process. we understand that. unfortunately, a lot of tea party activists who were elected to the congress do not understand compromise. that's one of the provisions mr. levin has concerns about. we have concerns about the pipeline provision. frankly, we understand that in order to protect the people, we have to make compromises. we are prepared to do so in the short term. yes, we can hope to work out a long-term solution that does what we think it ought to do. thank you very much. >> are you coming back to the pro-forma session tomorrow? >> you never can tell. [laughter] >> house democratic leaders have their say on the payroll tax cut legislation. we heard from john boehner and
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republicans earlier. we will show that to you in a bid and continue to take your calls on c-span. the numbers are on your screen. we will let you know about our coverage plans. we will be at the white house in about one hour and 10 minutes from now to hear from president obama. that will be at 12:15. the spokesman at 1:00 thursday. if you do not get through on the phones, are facebook p -- phones, our facebook poll is up. you heard several comments about republican leader mitch mcconnell in the senate and the statement he has released in the last few minutes or so. we have linked to this at c- span.org. the republican leader says senator reid should appoint conferees on the long term bill and the house should pass an
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extension that locks in thousands of keystone pipeline jobs, and other expiring provisions, and allows congress to work on a solution for the longer extensions. that is from mitch mcconnell just a few minutes ago. once again, that is linked on our web site, [inaudible] -- on nour website, c-span.org. first up. caller: i believe we should have extensions go for one year. you go back in there in two months. this has not even been accepted. democrats or republicans -- that will mean in two months that they will give the american people what they want. they might be holding at it off and holding it off. if he has something for one year -- host: for the short-term -- go
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ahead. caller: my grandson is in the union. they have thousands and thousands of union workers sunday petition to obama -- workers send a petition to obama to have the canada pipeline come through. the unions and everything. that would mean thousands and thousands of workers to work on that pipeline. they would be paying state taxes. they would be paying mostly federal taxes to the government. host: the current bill has the pipeline in it. the president has to make a decision within 60 days on the keystone pipeline. jim, the democrats' line, in new hampshire. caller: i just want to say that i think president obama is the best president we have had since lincoln. i would like to ask him to
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please go to the floor and ask them for a six-month -- two- month extension -- six months. four months to talk about extending it. please extend it to a point where, at the same time, we are talking about the big business is losing their tax -- host: you mean the bush tax cuts, jim? caller: yes. host: here is ray in massachusetts. go ahead. you are on the air. caller: my question and my comment is, speaker boehner earlier this month, i believe, was in favor of the two-month tax bill. correct me if i'm wrong.
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the two-month extension. speaker boehner was in favor of this. host: you mean before the house passed the one-year version. caller: yes, from what i understand. speaker boehner and the republican party understand you need 60 votes to pass this bill. if we are talking about a one- year extension, that will be a lot of political wrangling and a lilt -- and a lot of political discussion. it cannot be done in two weeks, especially when you have 60 votes needed to go to the bathroom in washington. host: it is two months, not two weeks. if they agree to something, they have two months to work out a longer-term deal. caller: right. right now, they're thinking they can extend it for a one-year within this two-week time frame, or 10 days -- host: or less.
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caller: and that is impossible with the way the politics are working and speaker boehner knows that. host: let's hear from brad in kentucky on the line for republicans. caller: yes, i have two quick comments. first of all, steny hoyer talked about this bill being jammed through in the middle of the night. it reminds me so much of obamacare. that is exactly what they did with obamacare. now it will bankrupt millions of small businesses. second of all, boehner is doing exactly the right thing. he is leading this charge. we are out of money. we do not have it. we cannot give it. we have given way to much. we are overextended. it's time to cut the purse strings. if they can extend this for one year, why can't they eliminate it altogether? the american people their money
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so they can spend, save, and do what they want with it. we can move this country forward and get jobs and whatever we need. it's just amazing to me that when the shoe is on the other foot, you hear all the barking and the crying. the democratic party has no clue that we are broke. host: that was brad from kentucky. the kentucky senator, mitch mcconnell, said senator reid should appoint conferees and the house should pass an extension. the full statement is posted on our website at c-span.org. wendy in kentucky on the line for democrats. caller: thank you. i am a conservative democrat. i am very concerned about this thing. i feel like speaker boehner is doing the right thing.
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should not be kicked down the road for two months. boehner realizes that we do not have the money for this. what obama needs to be doing, he needs to come out and all of our senators need to get together and cut taxes from top to bottom. everyone will benefit. businesses will benefit and everything else, when you cut taxes and cut out a lot of this waste and everything. that will get our economy moving again. host: one more call before we show you speaker boehner's comments. philippi in alexandria on the line for independents. caller: i am concerned about the process with eric cantor. it seems like he has very little to do, since this is a right to work state, to do with the whole process. none of this is really going to affect his state.
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i am wondering how he got this clout. for him to stop processes does not stop him from reelection. host: are you saying that the payroll tax cut would not affect people in virginia? caller: mostly the unemployment, because it is a right to work state. none of this really has to do with his reelection. host: within those law -- apply?t those laws caller: barely. it will not affect his candidacy at all. host: more of your calls are coming up. again, we are going to hear from president obama in about one hour at the white house earlier this morning, just after 10:00 a.m. eastern, speaker boehner spoke to reporters.
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>> good morning, everyone. yesterday, i spoke with president obama. i urged him to call on senator reid to work with us to finish this bill that will provide for one year of tax relief for american workers. i told the president there is one big reason why we need to do a full year. that is jobs. a one-year bill, like the president requested, and like the house produced, is simply better for jobs and better for our economy. a one-year bill provides, on average, about $1,000 for american workers, as opposed to the senate bill, which would provide a measly $166. as importantly, a one-year bill would provide certainty for american employers as they began
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to plan for next year. two-month extension only perpetuates the uncertainty that too many employers already have in dealing with the economy and what is coming out of washington. listen. i used to run a small business. i can tell you that the language in the senate bill will hurt small businesses. the senate only goes for two months. the businesses send their taxes in -- i used to write the check to the irs. it is done on a quarterly basis. you'll have a couple months of this, another month of this, trying to figure out what your obligation is will be difficult. secondly, the paperwork requirements and the programming requirements contained in the senate bill will make it virtually impossible for those who provide payroll services to do the job that employers hire them to do. the fact is, we can do better.
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americans are still asking the question, "where are the jobs?" it's time for us to sit down and have a serious negotiation and solve this problem so the american workers do not see their taxes go up in january. >> good morning. as the speaker said, it is our position that we want to make sure we provide some certainty to the working people of this country that their taxes will not go up for an entire year. unfortunately, that you, although it is shared, is not being implemented by the senate. we are here. we want to solve the problem. frankly, given where the parties are, there is not a big difference between our positions. it all comes down to the budgetary impact of the extension of the tax holiday. i saw the president doing his christmas shopping yesterday. i saw he brought his dog with him. we are here.
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he can bring his dog up here. we are pet friendly. it will not take a long time. we can probably resolve the differences within an hour. let's do this, as the speaker said. let's avoid any more uncertainty. we are trying to avoid another one of these difficult moments within 60 days so we can get on about the business of putting in place factors for a better economy and job creation. >> good morning. dave camp. employers are telling us that this convoluted mechanism the senate took up in a rush to get out of town does not work. we think we should listen to our employers. the democrats fail to do that in the health care bill. that's how we ended up with the bird and some provision that we had to appeal, and we did so in a bipartisan way. people are working this week. they are working next week. we think we should be doing that in congress. we have the time. let's get this issue right, for
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the sake of the economy, for the sake of the job creators, and for the sake of our country and the american worker. thank you. >> hello. you know, these are the differences. the there are a lot of yes's for our bill and no's for the senate bill. we keep hearing a lot about the democrats in the house and how they were for the one-year extension of the payroll tax holiday. all but 10 voted no on this bill. how do we explain that? how can you before the american people and vote no? the senate. the difference in the bill is here. we all agree on a one-year payroll tax extension holiday. they sent back to was a two- month extension, which numbers
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of groups have said is not good policy and it will not work for our employers or our employees. the national payroll reporting consortium, a nonpartisan group, has said that this will be more difficult to implement for employers' and very difficult for employees. that is not the way to go. what about our seniors? in our bill, we past two years worth of a fix so physicians would not have their medicare reimbursements cut. our seniors need to know that they can receive that good health care and continue to do so. we get back two months? not only is that in issue, as a nurse, it is an issue because what happens with that, as the medicare payments come in, there has to be a resetting phase. there will be a couple of weeks, at least, where physicians will
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not be reimbursed. that's very difficult to deal with as employers, as small business owners. in the house of representatives, we cannot cause more problems for the american people in this obama economy. this is his economy. we are trying hard to fix it. it is time to come to the table and sit down. i want to ask those senators why you would vote for such a short- term lack of a solution to go into the new year so that you can go home for the holidays. thank you. >> good morning, everyone. kevin brady from texas. one of the questions we get in washington these days, "why haven't you gone home?" the answer is, these are principles worth fighting for. they have a real impact on real people, and especially our economy. i talked to a couple of our local small-business people.
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a doctor who leads a 60-percent cardiology practice in north houston told me these short-term extensions are so hard on the patients. they are hard on the doctors. they are hard on his small business. he is afraid there are fewer and fewer doctors who see medicare patients these days. the house bill, which extends these payments for two years is world's better than the senate bill and the uncertainty for two months. i talked to a family owned business owner. he and his wife owned a plumbing company. they built this small business from seven workers to 46 today. he says a two-month extension creates real payroll problems for his small business and creates no incentives to hire. he said he wants to hire one or two more plumbers. he told me his plumbers were
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very frustrated. he told them two months. that's no help. if congress is really thinking about the people, the workers, they would stay and get this done for the full year. i talked to janet. her husband, jason, is in his fifth tour of duty in iraq and afghanistan. i have three girls. she works full time. she told me, "are you kidding me? my husband is in afghanistan. he left on thanksgiving day to go back. he is not getting a vacation. he has got to get the job done. why shouldn't the senate?" she does not understand why senate democrats will not come back and work with republicans to solve this problem now. i do not know where the political winds are blowing, what republicans are worried about, or where the economic winds are blowing along main street.
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this uncertainty from the senate bill causes real problems. until we create the certainty for our small business owners to hire, to invest in new buildings, equipment, and software, we will not see this economy moving forward. that is why republicans are in washington, willing to sit down at the table to solve this problem now. it is critical to our economy. >> greg walden from oregon. we are not doing this for the politics. you have pointed that out pretty clearly. there is a reason we are here fighting this fight. it is over the policies involved. you have heard from my colleagues about the effect it will have on small businesses. i was a small-business owner with my wife for 22 years. i know what it's like to do the quarterly. i know about the uncertainty and frustration when government acts on a short-term political basis. we want long-term solutions. in this legislation that the
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house passed in a bipartisan manner is an enormous bill out on spectrum, which can help create hundreds of thousands of new jobs. we would pay for the bill dealt for the broadband interoperable solution. there are important job creation improvements in the house-passed bill. there are important public safety provisions in the house- passed bill. our job is to work out the differences with the house and the senate's. we should sit down with negotiators from both sides and do just that. >> good morning. the reason i am not in the beautiful hudson valley today is because i am here with colleagues -- all of whom care
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very much about the american people. we are the immediate voice of the american people. we have received word from organizations representing small businesses and, representing american's job creators across the country. i'm going to point out the national federation of independent businesses, which, as you know, represents thousands and thousands of small businesses across the country that say a two-month extension would create problems that would disproportionately affect small businesses. two months versus one year. common sense tells you one year is far better. the president himself has been a strong advocate for at least a one-year extension. two years versus two months in the case of our seniors who depend on medicare and doctors to care for them. they are facing devastating cuts in medicare reimbursements that
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would make access extremely difficult. america's health care providers have the dust -- have begged us not to keep keeping the can down the road. we're all tired of that cliche. millions of americans across the country are working for the holidays to put food on the table and take care of your families. we care about them. we are with them. that is why we are here. we want to work over these remaining days of the year to get the best possible arrangement that we can for the american people, to grow jobs, to lift burdens, to provide them with assurance as we move forward. >> i am tom price. i represent the sixth district of georgia. everyone knows that jobs and the economy is the number one issue across this great land. if you talk with small and large businesses, they say the reason
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they are unable to higher is because of the -- unable to hire is because of the uncertainty in the market. the house bill attempts to provide certainty. a two-year fixed to the reimbursement mechanism for caring for senior patients. the senate bill says two months is ok. as a physician, we scheduled surgical procedures out month in advance -- we schedule surgical procedures months in advance. what is often times missed in this argument, or this discussion, is the hospitals and physician offices are often times the number one or two employer. when physicians do not have that kind of certainty, they will have to lay people off. this is a job as destructive --
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this is a job-destructive measure. for seniors, for certainty for job creators, a year for a payroll tax cut and the federal unemployment benefits, and two years for the fix for physicians is absolutely vital. we urge our senate colleagues to come back and get this done before the end of the year. >> over the last 24 hours, i have been asked the question, " what are you fighting for?" one, we are fighting to change the way washington operates. the senate package and let the president -- and what the president is advocating for us to accept as a good policy is adopted through the lens of washington, d.c., doing what is
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politically convenient, and in order to comply with vacation plans. it is time that we lead in the house. it is time that we lead in washington, d.c. look at this from the point of view from the people back home left to live with these policies. you have heard from my colleagues. they have all said that we have heard from so many people that this proposal is not workable. it is now time to stand. there are major differences between the senate and the house bill that are common sense provisions that all americans, i believe, will agree with. take unemployment, for example. we proposed in the house that states have the ability drug screen people on unemployment? why? take the words of a workforce director in my district when he talks to me and tells me, "we spend thousands of dollars trying to reemployed people to get back to work and then when they go in and they take the drug screening tests, they fail.
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what a waste." a simple proposal, people have to have a ged. we want to give them the tools. that is what the difference is all about. i ask that we get it done. we have plenty of time. joining us to do the work for the american people. they deserve it. >> fred upton from michigan. there is no reason why we cannot get this thing done right. yes, there are a lot of similarities in the bill. we know that we have to resolve the doctor fix. keystone is in both bills. there is no reason to think that in the remaining days of this year that we cannot sit down together and negotiate a settlement that makes sense so it does not have to be addressed again in a couple of weeks.
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that is a very important thing for all of us here. we have seen these sparring press conferences. it seems like the democrats are trailing us wherever we go did we understand the minority leader will be here within the hour -- wherever we go. we understand the minority leader will be here within the hour. ask him the question. why aren't you appointing conferees? together we sit down and began to negotiate these differences and actually get a solution? not a deal, but a solution that works for the american families, working families, all across this country as they get ready for the holidays. we can do this. i am sure that we can come to an agreement, rather than simply punting the ball into the next year. let's get this done. let's get it done right. >> would you acknowledge that
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the outside criticism from conservatives is growing louder? do you believe that regardless of politics, the political brand of your party and maybe even some of your effectiveness is being hurt? >> politics will be politics. our team believes it is always right to do the best thing. the fact is, i have told my colleagues what my parents taught me and i've talked to my kids about. if you do the right things for the right reasons, the right things will happen. everybody has already agreed that the best policy is a one- year extension of these policies. what we are fighting for is what everybody has already agreed to. let's sit down and resolve the differences. >> mr. speaker, you say you are doing this because the american people need certainty. aren't you worried you are creating more uncertainty? once we have 10 days. we are here and we're ready to work. >> speaker boehner, are
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republicans going to kill down [inaudible] the senator from nevada, "this week is froabout political leverage." karl rove, "i think the editorial hit the nail on the head." are they all wrong? >> listen. sometimes it is wrong to do the right thing -- sometimes it's hard to do the right thing. the president asked us to extend these policies for a year. mr. hoyer, senator reid, we need to extend all these policies for at least a year. we agreed with them. that is why the house passed the bill. to kick the can down the road
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because we are getting close to christmas is not the right thing for the american people. >> if there was some sort of compromise inked, do you think you can move this bill with a minority of your conference? not a minority, but you would have more democratic votes? the senate bill would pass if some republicans and a lot of democrats -- would you be willing? >> i do not believe that to be the case. i do not believe that to be the case. nothing can happen until we have someone to sit down and work with to negotiate. this is why i asked president obama yesterday to call senator reid and ask him to appoint conferees. we can sit down and we can talk. we can resolve these differences. >> speaker boehner, many of you have mentioned the quarterly reporting requirements.
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would you be open to a three- month extension? >> we are not like to sit down and negotiate with ourselves. senator reid will appoint conferees from the senate side so that we can sit down and resolve our differences and do so quickly. thank you, everybody. >> will you be here over christmas? >> speaker boehner and republican conferees on the payroll tax hike. on c-span, we will continue taking your phone calls. our phone lines are open for your thoughts on whether the speaker should accept the legislation and pass that. the numbers are -- from president obama at the white house at 12:15 eastern.
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also, the daily briefing at the white house. our facebook poll is up. should speaker boehner accept the bill? also, by the way, you can use twitter. we will see if we can take a look at some of those, as well. the scene has shifted a little bit since the briefing this morning with john boehner. mitch mcconnell called on the house to pass the senate version did his statement was released this morning. we have posted that on our website at c-span.org. the president has spoken with speaker boehner. the white house just released a statement on that saying speaker boehner called the president this morning and the president said, "the only viable option is to pass the bipartisan compromise that received the support of 90% of the senate."
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the president told the speaker he is willing to work immediately. we will hear more from the president at 12:15. now, we will hear from you. george, republican caller. caller: i have been following this for the last two or three days. it almost makes me ashamed i voted republican in the last election. ibm proud of my -- i am proud of my senator for passing the tax cut for the poor, the unemployment for the unemployed that are seeking work, and for the elderly. i have an elderly mother dying of cancer and she needs her medicaid. this is really bad that you have a few holding hostage to the
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american way of life. now it is vindictive. it is terrible that you have 39 republican senators -- which i voted for one of them -- saying pass it. host: the senate version would prevent the increase in the social security tax, the payroll tax, for two months. here is david in north carolina, democratic caller. caller: yes, sir. a simple solution to this. if the republicans would drop all of the attachments they have added to this piece of legislation and pass this as a stand-alone bill. come back next year and then debate and hash ou the keystone pipeline and all the other attachments. let this go as a stand-alone piece of legislation. let them show that they are
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truly concerned about the tax cuts for american citizens. those that are unemployed that need those benefits to make ends meet. politics with this. drop all of the additions. vote on this as a stand-alone piece of legislation. come back next year and hash out all the things they have added to it. host: the version does include the keystone pipeline, at least a 60-day window the president in the will make a decision -- window in which the president will make a decision. next is olympia, washington. it's an independent scholar -- an independent caller. caller: i agree that they need to drop all the extra stuff that's in that bill and pass the stand-alone bill.
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the republicans have been doing this since obama was elected. everything has to come up to the 13th hour. they are doing it again. i guess i would rather see the -- see it fail than see the tea party control the united states. as a former payroll person, i understand how hard it is to implement all these short extensions. a short extension is not the right thing to do. however, is better than no extension. i would bet a month of social security that if the senate comes back in, they will not reach an agreement until the very last possible minute, because that is what the republicans do. they are not interested in getting anything through. they want to get rid of obama and that is the bottom line. host: "the washington post" had
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some details this morning on how much the payroll tax cut would mean. they write that your next paycheck would be smaller. from 4.2% to 6.2% of your wages. that's nearly $20 per week for a person making $50,000 per year. next is detroit on our republican line. go ahead. hi. caller: i support democrats at large, but i feel that boehner should support the senate bill, notwithstanding the [inaudible] american people are so sick and tired of this demagoguery. we should clean our own closets out first before we can tell others to do so. there are a lot of things going on. all these representatives and
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senator that we do not like -- such as kicking cans down the street, pulling plugs for the extensions of the payroll tax bill. we need to get together and quit all of this nonsense in washington. thank you, c-span. host: thank you for the call, michigan. here is pontiac, michigan on on the line for democrats. make sure you mute your television. go ahead with your comments. caller: me and my husband are disabled and we have seen a lot going on. i am kind of upset. we are trying to do the best we can.
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the firemen and policemen are getting laid off. it is really, really bad. it is hurting us more than anybody else. we cannot do nothing. we just pay our bills every single day and they just keep on and on. they should have enough to cover something because they keep on cutting. something has got to happen. host: thank you for sharing your story. is jerry in indianapolis on on the line for independents -- i in indianapolis on the line for independents. caller: everyone has to do like franklin roosevelt. he sat down at the table. he got everybody jobs. building houses, hospitals. he did what he could. i read the text book about
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franklin roosevelt. the republicans have got to sit down and serve the people to give the people what they want. there are people struggling. host: jerry, thank you for your call. more of your calls coming up as we wait to hear from the president and his comments on the payroll tax cut. we want to show you the briefing from just a short time ago over at the house with leader earlier -- with leader hoyer and other democrats. >> merry christmas. we are here to talk about a happy new year for 160 million americans. it has now been two days a sense
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house republicans said in an emphatic note to the bipartisan compromise and walked away from america's working people. democrats have spent that time trying to get a vote to avoid a tax hike. republicans have been arguing about process and politics. if we do not get this done before january 1, a very short time, taxes will go up for 160 million middle-class americans. unemployment benefits will expire for 2.3 million americans. 48 million americans, seniors on medicare, will have the security of having their doctors available put at risk. we ought not be creating that type of uncertainty and anxiety among the american people. the stakes are too high to be
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arguing about politics and process. the republic against contention that the two-month compromise is somehow -- the republicans contention that the two-month compromise is somehow unworkable is untrue. speaker boehner, who just appeared here, said he and his members want a one-year extension. we want that, too. he talked about a bill. that bill had no hearings in the ways and means committee. had no market the in the ways and means committee. it was past three days after it was introduced -- was passed three days after it was introduced just three days ago. expected the senate to take it home. they did not. what did they do? they came together, reasoned
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together, and voted together. 89 senators came together and said we ought to pass a compromise to give us time to work out any differences that remain. every family in america understands that. step back and let's see how we can get to where we want to be. that is a one-year extension. yes, a two-year extension. eliminate the uncertainty for american families and then get right were on a one-your version -- not wait until february, not walk away. let us not have a conference while we hold hostage 160 million americans with fear that their taxes will go up on january 1. let us not hold hostage 40 eight
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million seniors who will fear -- hostage 48 million seniors who fear their doctors will not be available to them. what does not hold hostage the 2.3 million americans. the american people are waiting. they are watching closely and intently. there was a cartoon in "the washington post" today which said that speaker boehner said, "you know, we did not get 12 presents under the tree, so i will take away the two presence you've got." mr. speaker, let's give them the two presents and work on getting the others. that's what they want us to do. that is what the senate did. that is what almost everybody in this country, including "the wall street journal" says we
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ought to do, mr. speaker. perhaps rush limbaugh and grover norquist do not think that's what we should do, but americans think that's what we should do. i am pleased to yield to the ranking member of the budget committee who grapples with these issues every day and knows how difficult they are to resolve and knows that sometimes, you make an agreement on what you can agree on and then continue to work on that which you cannot. chris van hollen from maryland. >> thank you for joining us today. i listened to the speaker of the house, who was just at this podium a short time ago. as i heard his remarks, it was clear that he is not listening to the american people. just like the house republicans did not listen to the american people when they threaten to have the united states default on its debts for the first time in its history and just like
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they did not listen to the american people when it came to taking up the jobs bill. they have refused to act on it. that is not really surprising anymore. i would have thought maybe, just maybe, they will listen to some of their senate republican colleagues. 80% of them voted for a bipartisan compromise to make sure that 160 million americans did not see a tax increase come january. they worked together on a bipartisan basis to make sure the 2.3 million americans would not lose their unemployment benefits, and making sure the 48 million americans on medicare will have a doctor. the senate republican colleagues worked together to do that. we have heard from the editorial page of "the wall street journal" and we have heard from carl rove -- from karl rove. virtually the entire country, with the exception of the speaker of the house, recognized
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the right thing to do is provide certainty and make sure payroll taxes do not go up on january 1. the way to do that is to take up the bipartisan senate bill. in fact, they should not have been at this podium. we should all be upstairs in the chamber of the house of representatives. that's where the people's house transact its business. if you go up there right now, you'll find the main doors are locked. there is no speaker and the chair. there's nobody presiding. yesterday, we went to the floor of the house. we ask for unanimous consent to bring up the bipartisan bill. we could have had this bill to the president's desk last night. if we open up the house chamber and take up that bill, the bipartisan bill, we can have the bill to the president's desk tonight. the keys to those doors are in
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their hands and the keys to the problem are in their hands. everyone in this country knows this is not democrats versus republicans. this is senate democrats, senate republicans, the president, and the american people saying to the house republicans, "what are you doing here letting the clock run down and raising taxes on 160 million americans?" the president of the united states -- the last refuge of a house republican party that cannot get its work done to start pointing fingers at other people. the bipartisan bill is not at the white house. the president is not sitting on the bipartisan bill. the bipartisan senate bill is right here in the united states congress. the speaker of the house and the republican majority have the power to bring that bill up. let us get the work done. the president is waiting to sign
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the bill. he has made it very clear that he will sign it. we can put this whole issue to rest by this evening if the house republican leadership would move out of the pressroom and moved upstairs onto the floor of the house and to the american people's business. that is what we should do. then, of course we should get on. the president asked for a yearlong extension of the payroll tax cut in september. the speaker of the house and republican leadership said no. they thought it was a bad idea. interesting to hear them say today is so important to the economy. that is what people have been saying for months. they belittle the the whole idea of the payroll tax cut. they said it would not do anything to the economy. today, they have a different story. they recognized the american people knew that if you raised
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the payroll taxes right now, it would hurt the economy. people got tired of hearing them protecting tax breaks for the very wealthy americans and corporations while refusing it to 160 million americans. that's why they have changed their tune. now they say you have to do what we said we should not do. that is what we have called for. we also know that if you do not get this done now, you will see taxes go up on 160 million americans in just a very few days. let's not let that happen. speaker boehner and the house republicans have it within their power to go up and open those doors and pass the bipartisan bill and get the job done. introduce my colleague, the vice chairman of the democratic caucus. >> thank you, chris.
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this latest republican overreach is so hard to comprehend that it is breathtaking. just three days short of christmas, nine days short of watching 160 million americans see their taxes increase, i think the citizens of this country are listening. they are watching. i am going to choose my words very carefully. the house republicans plan to scuttle the deal to help middle- class families is irresponsible and wrong. what is playing out in washington this week is about political leverage and not about what is good for the american people. there's no reason to hold up the short-term extension while a more comprehensive deal is being worked out. the refusal to compromise now threatens to increase taxes on hard-working americans and stop unemployment benefits for those
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out of work. it angers me that house republicans would rather continue playing politics than find solutions. their actions will hurt american families and the detrimental to our fragile economy. speaker boehner is under enormous pressure. he has gotten a lot of feedback from many republicans who say, "we just do not want the payroll tax cut." as a matter of fact, many republicans would say, "we really do not want the extension of the unemployment compensation or the rest of it, anyway." congress can work out a solution without stopping the payroll tax cut extension for the middle class, without jeopardize in seniors' access to health care, or threatening unemployment insurance but i wanted to use words carefully -- insurance.
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i wanted to use my words carefully. i used those of senator scott brown and others. let me use the words of ordinary americans. "$40 per paycheck is the difference between my family paying our mortgage each month and losing our home." that is from a citizen in ohio. "$40 means the difference to me in buying gas or paying my electric bill. i am disabled, so i am on a very tight monthly income." that is an american from or egon. "$40 a paycheck allows my son to have a hot lunch at school." that is from a citizen in hawaii. from a citizen in alaska, "it means a home cooked meal for my
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family of five. it means new shoes for two of my kids." i think americans are listening. americans are speaking, including republicans, to say it is time for us to get this done to move forward. we believe that every member of congress in the house and senate can deal with a two-month extension. everyone should know how to walk and chew gum, including those who have to process the payroll tax cut claims. we're three days from christmas, nine days from seeing one of the largest tax increases on americans who work in our history. it is time to get this done. let me yield to the ranking democrat on the ways and means committee, senator levin. >> thank you. i am fourth because i am supposed to be cleaned up. our message is very clear. the republicans should come back to washington and clean up the mess that they are creating for
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millions and millions of people. these numbers are so stark. 160 million. these are the magic numbers. 160, 2.2, and 4.8 million. we have quoted senators. let me quote a couple republicans in the house. "my republican colleagues are flat out wrong." rep gibson, "i also pledges for the two-month stopgap." the republican house leadership will not people vote on that. they should come back and let us do so. we have introduced a bill that now has 178 sponsors -- >> 180. >> 180.
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now the republicans need to join in and not give a holiday gift to millions and millions of americans of an empty promise. essentially, they are saying to taxpayers is an empty box. for millions who are looking for work and who are threatened with the cut off of their unemployment insurance, it is an empty box. and for seniors who want a doctor to see, it is an empty box. let's come back here. i went home yesterday, and i was doing an interview, and an anchor at one of the stations -- i guess he should remain nameless because i was somewhat surprised -- essentially yelled out in front of the entire group there, what do that house
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republicans in the world think they are doing? what they are doing is shorting the needs of millions of people. so we are here to say to the speaker, let us vote. you know why he does not want us to vote? because it would pass. >> thank you very much, mr. van hollen, mr. becerra, and mr. levin. this is not about politics. it is not even about policy. it is about trying to make sure that bad things don't happen to good people tend days from now. the senate has agreed overwhelmingly. the democrats in the house of representatives to a person support this expansion, unanimously support this expansion. and the president of the united states supports this extension. which means that if you try to
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make percentages of it, 4/5 of the decision makers agreed to moving this forward now to prevent the bad things happening to good people. yes, we could deal with the policy differences, yes, we could deal with the politics, but let us not hold hostage these 160 million, those 2.2 million, those 48 million people over the next nine days until one side is bludgeoned, which is what is being attended come into agreeing on that which for fifth of the decision makers have said we did not have agreement on. we do have agreement on this, let's move forward. questions. >> senate minority leader mitch mcconnell came out this morning in what he called a compromise moving forward. he said if harry reid would appoint conferees -- republicans would agree -- [inaudible]
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what is your reaction? >> from what you just told me -- and chris has a black. they're trying to show me what senator mitch mcconnell said. what what you told me is if senator reid appoint confereess, they would agree to a two-month extension. >> appointing conferees to negotiate the 1-year -- [laughter] >> say that again. >> sandy levin raises a good question. there is little doubt -- and a republican staffer in the senate said clearly senator mcconnell would not have made this agreement if speaker boehner had told him he would be opposed to it. clearly that would have happened. so, i think mr. levin might be right. i do not know if senator
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mcconnell has begun behalf of speaker boehner. i don't think speaker -- speaker boehner has said that yet. but certainly i am sure he may respond to that question a. let us see what he has to say. >> house republicans just stood here and told us the democrats would just come back -- if you could work out your differences in an hour and get a year-long tax cut. why not do that? >> if we could just work out our differences. they passed a bill. how did they try to work out their differences? no hearings, no markups, and just passed it, and jammed it through. knowing full well it was designed to fail. and what happened when it went to the senate? harry reid tried to put it on the floor and say, okay, here is their bill. who objected to putting it on the floor? the republicans. they did not want it voted on. and then what happened when the senate bill came to the house?
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they precluded a vote on the senate bill. so that when speaker boehner says, you know, just come together, very frankly, his bill did not attempt to do that. and he knew it was not acceptable to the senate or to the president. so, they passed a bill which they knew was not going to pass. >> that small? >> i do not think our differences are that small. they are very substantial, which i think all three of the members of the ways and means committee -- >> can i give one example -- >> i knew he would. but, no, the differences are not that small, which is why the senate, trying to get an agreement between senator mcconnell and senator reid with speaker boehner's participation, discussion both of them, could not come to agreement, which is why they said we are not going to hold hostage to these folks
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until we come to agreement. >> the wasn't one word passed between mr. -- and myself, never said a word. they brought this up and take eliminate 40 weeks of unemployment insurance, federal unemployment insurance. a small difference? it would have reduced the maximum weeks in michigan for the unemployed looking for work to 46 weeks. now, let's pass this bill and then sit down, have a conference, and work out the differences that are significant. >> on that point -- because i heard the republican majority leader say the differences were very small in these negotiations. just not true. the reality is there were some big differences. and let's remember, again, that
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the house republicans were opposed to a one-year payroll tax cut. but they realize politically they had to do it, so they decided to use the opportunity to try to get some of the extraneous and related provisions through. even today they do not support the payroll tax cut for itself. they continue to want to use these negotiations to further other objectives, just like they used -- tried to use the debt ceiling for other objectives. so, there is one of agreement, and the argument was started by the president in the sense he said let's do one-year tax extension. republicans have said, no, and that it is why they never got to gather -- beset let's do two months for sure and let's work out the rest. it is clear from -- that senator
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mcconnell has put the blame by calling on the speaker to pass it. hope you all would do something for us because they are not giving us the information. s the question, how does this plan is different in substance from the plan that got 89 votes. how does it differ in the lives of people who are about to have their taxes increased? if this process -- you have to jump over three groups, go through three channels -- i don't think the american people care. what they want to know is what substantively on this thing is different from what they are proposing now than what got a bipartisan group of senators to pass this by 89 votes. we are ready to do something. we saw the negotiations occur. so, time is running out, the clock is ticking. before christmas, before january
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1, by god, let us get this done. >> if i can, senator reid said he would do exactly what senator mcconnell said, passive, we will appoint conferees and work it out. >> on saturday you released a statement saying "a two-month extension of unemployment insurance and there will tax cut is fully inadequate, and the american people -- there is much more certainty and passion about economic distress." that was saturday. now we are here on thursday and this is the right way to go now? >> we want a two-month extension so we can work out provisions, including unemployment insurance. what is in the two-months, i think, needs some further review. but it has to pass for us to have that. >> you were wrong on saturday? >> no, i was right.
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i want the unemployment insurance further reviewed. during these two months we will do exactly that. them all of you folks have covered congress. the american people operate on this. every day. they can't reach agreement right now, and they make some interim agreement for the next day or day after and say we will solve the problem. we do that all the time. frankly, we have done it 22 times keeping the faa operating. we did an interview because we can't reach agreement. unfortunately, a lot of politics there that has to do with frankly holding workers hostage to a labor provision that the republicans don't like. but when you cannot come to agreement on a full year appropriations bill, what do you do? pass a short-term one. this is not an unusual
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procedure. like sandy levin, everybody says what you all to do is pass a full year. if you can pass the full year, make sure the 160 million americans, 2.2 million americans, 48 million americans, are not hurt and the process. that is what he is saying. it is not like we have fallen in love of the two-month extension. we have not. but what we said, however, we are not want to be party to hurting those people in the interim while trying to reach agreement on what we think is the correct objective. >> the bill that passed the senate will reduce unemployment benefits in 11 states within the two months -- the democrats support reducing unemployment? >> look, there are things in this bill, as we pointed out, that we had to make concessions on. that is the process. we understand that. unfortunately, an awful lot of tea party activists who were
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elected to congress that cannot understand compromise. that provision is one of the provisions that mr. levin has concerns about. we have concerns about the pipeline division. frankly we understand that in order to protect the 160 million, the 40 million, and the 2 million, we have to make compromise and what are prepared to do so in the short term. so, yes, we compared to work out a long-term solution to do what -- >> , and that to the pro forma session -- coming back to the pro forma session tomorrow? >> asking if they were coming back for the pro-forma session tomorrow. 10:00. you can see it on c-span. that was that house republicans and house democrats from earlier. president obama will be speaking in a little bit -- they pushed it back about 45 minutes.
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perhaps there is discussion underway between the president and leaders on the hill. mitch mcconnell, the republican leader in the senate, this morning released a statement calling on the house to pass the statement and it is on c- span.org. part of it reads -- again, we posted it on our website. we will take a few of the phone calls. republican line. warsaw, missouri. this is douglas. caller: i am a career veteran and -- veteran, and i am a little bit old and getting a little bit tired of these democrats always blaming the republicans. if you all remember back when
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obamacare was put out, senator pelosi said we do not know what is in it but let us pass it and then we will read it. it looks to me like they are doing this again. we don't know what is in it, but let us go ahead and pass it for two months and then did you know we will be taking it down the road. why doesn't senator reid come to the floor and senator biden, to the floor and both of them in oceans -- open session debate each other and solve their differences and then go back to the parties and say this is the way it is going to be. you know, you can blame anybody, if you want. a lot of people -- everybody looks at somebody and they say it's not my fault, it is their fault. i have a lot of mistakes and i
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took credit for it -- and i am also disabled. host: kentucky, peter is on our democrats' line. go ahead, peter. caller: this is carl from chicago. host: i punched up the wrong lines. go ahead with your comments. caller: i have been listening to the calls this morning and a lot of people seem to have come in after the middle of the picture. let me put this in some context. of the president in september came up with a job package that included the unemployment and all of these other things, everything except for the keystone pipeline. and he proposed a way to pay for it. the republicans said flat out, no. no, you are not going to raise taxes, even a little bit on people who have income. they rejected it. if is a deadline approached, the house republicans said they were going to pass the bill that they passed. even before they passed it, the
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senate and the president said there was no support for it. they passed it anyhow. then wind -- when reid decided to put it to a vote, the senate republicans blocked it from coming up to a vote and instead they had the proposal -- the senate democrats put forth a proposal and the senate republicans put forth a proposal. both of those proposals failed. now they realize we are at an impasse and we are not going to get it done before the end of the year. so, both parties in the senate said, well, what can we do? a lot of this was politics to save face and leverage and it came out of the two-month extension. that is only just to keep the thing from expiring. what people are not understanding about what boehner is doing is that his proposal
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will not pass. his proposal is not even fully paid for. he proposed to pay for this by increasing benefits on some people on the net effect -- medicare and getting money supposedly out of the housing and mortgage industry that is still faltering. >> we appreciate your close attention to the debate so far but we do want to get other callers. next is nick from woodbridge, virginia. independent line. caller: i wanted to call to say there was a caller relief from the atlantic, a cpa, and she basically -- it seemed like she blasted the president -- saying the house had already passed a bill giving the 1-year extension. it seems as though what she does not understand is through tax and balances in the congress, the house passed a bill but they loaded it with so much stuff, it was impossible to pass it.
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but the point i really want to make is this whole issue of job creation gets under my skin when i hear republicans talking about these job creators being these wealthy corporate -- but the real job creators are the consumers. the consumers are the job creators because without the consumer's buying the products that these corporations may, there would be no corporations to have anybody. i really wish the democrats would direct the rhetoric -- that the president would come out strongly and say the real job creators of the consumers. if we are going to help the job creators, we want to pass the payroll the extension and applied unemployment insurance and extend that and help out the 99% so that we can really create jobs in this country and not give all of the money to these corporate ceo's who basically the republicans in the senate and house are in their pockets.
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host: we will hear from the president about 1:00. john is a republican from lake wales, florida. caller: i have listened to this going on for 40 years. the democrats and republicans, they wait until the last minute to do anything. one hole to the other hostage. they put pass these bills. they never looked after the little person out here. they are always looking out for the own self. a man it goes to congress and senate making $45,000 a year and, of being a multimillionaire? >> what do you think. it said they extended for a year in -- should be extended
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for a year? caller: every year, holding the united states a little people hostage. it is ridiculous. they've got all of this time and they wait till the last minute and then they go bickering about which one did this. this bill, this one alone. host: rob on our independent line from ohio. caller: good afternoon. i have looked at this bill and i have trouble with it because we get two months benefits for 10 years of new fees and taxes on new home buyer mortgages. host: you are talking about the proposed method of paying for it? caller: we hear the democrats give us the benefit, but they
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don't talk about the cost. the cost goes on the new home buyers for the next 10 years. call,let's get one more on our democrats' line. paducah, ky. peter, are you there? caller: yes, i am here. this has been a good discussion. heard a lot of great things from your listeners. my question is -- and it has already been asked -- what does a massive oil pipeline have to do, how is it related to a payroll tax extension? the answer is, it is not. i feel this is the problem with our system. a good bill gets put forward and all of these senators and representatives get in there and cut these backroom deals. ok, you put my proposal and there and i will vote yes on yours.
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host: we will hear the chamber of commerce view of the keystone pipeline in a moment. a lot pofroll tax cut. and our facebook page, the poll is under way. you can weigh in on line yourself at facebook.com/c-span. we expect to hear from president obama coming up at 1:00 p.m. eastern. until then, part of the conversation from this morning's "washington the" of the keystone pipeline portion of the spill will tax cut bill. >> we want to welcome matt koch
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from the u.s. chamber of commerce and we want to talk about the keystone xl pipeline. first, let us just take a step back and look at it objectively and then we will get the chamber's perspective. what is the pipeline, where does it come from and what does it produce? guest: the proposed pipeline will run from alberta down to texas. it is about 1,600 miles of pipeline -- bringing in conventional crude as well as oil sands crude. we think this is an important project. it is also an opportunity to create jobs. but there are already pipelines coming down and there has been controversy over the past couple of years because there has been a permit request to this administration. looking at 1,600 miles of pipeline, 3 feet in diameter, low to the ground, and hopefully bringing in somewhere between 500,000 or 700,000 barrels of crude oil. host: is there anything like it
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now? guest: a pipeline that the obama administration permitted back in 2009 that was called the alberto clipper and comes from alberta and heads to the refineries in the midwest. and similar sorts of cross- border pipelines and infrastructure that have been built and put into place. host: let us get the chamber perspective. we have the background and we will share some of the thoughts from friends of the earth and others of those opposed to this. why do we need this? guest: for a number of reasons. the u.s. will need about 21% more energy in 2025 than it has, according to the eia. here is an opportunity to bring in 500,000 to 700,000 barrels of oil. it is important for our economy, for job security, energy industry. and it will displace oil from parts of the world that do not
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have our interests in mind when it is important to look to our neighbor to the north who has been a good partner, and a stable economy, and we have an opportunity to utilize this resource. host: an objective question because our audience may not be familiar. what is sand oil? guest: deposits of oil trapped in massive deposits on what might have been an ocean thousands and thousands of years ago that left oil and materials trapped in sand. what you have is basically a piece of sand with water and oil trapped in it. unlike conventional crude oil where you can drill and try to extract it, or you have the crude and the products -- you have to separate the oil and the sand and it is a little bit different method. it was costly for a number of years but frankly with the higher oil prices and more technology being invested in
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ways to separate that oil, the prices have come down a bit in what it costs to produce it and it has become more economical and worthwhile with the investment going on. host: respond to this information from the national resources defense council and friends of the earth. they both are opposed to this oil pipeline. they point out in the last year and year and a half along the kalamazoo river in michigan, 1 million gallons spilled. 126,000 gallons in north dakota and 42,000 gallons in the yellowstone river along the montana border. guest: it is interesting they raised the point, for a number of reasons. oil is still transported mostly through pipelines, more than any other method. and we need this oil. it will come from somewhere. this pipeline that will be built, those were pipe line incidents and they do occur. it is not a risk-free. but it still remains the most safe way to bring oil into the country.
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we need to look at the fact that this would be the latest technology built, probably the most safe and technologically advanced pipeline to be built. the other point you want to look at is in order to bring that oil -- that energy, you need to have some way to get it here. you are looking at thousands and thousands of trucks or barges to transport the same amount of oil in this country. even the state department recognized it in what they published in august, saying while the pipeline is the lowest risk, it is still less risky from bringing in the oil from other methods. host: let us look at some information in favor of the pipeline. transcanada saying it could create 9% to 10% u.s. oil consumption, equal to u.s. imports from saudi arabia. 13,000 construction jobs, 7000 manufacturing jobs, at 118,000
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spin-off jobs, $100 billion in economic activity, and more than $585 million in state and local tax revenue during construction in that part of the country. guest: there has been discrepancy and people tried to raise concerns about some of the numbers, but you are looking at a minimal of 20,000 jobs just in the construction base. there are simply no two ways to look at that. 13,000 jobs transcanada agreed to -- they have an agreement in place. in addition, they have what has been some of the manufacturing going on to make the parts. and as you mentioned, we created an organization called the partnership to fuel america and which has been involved in organizing small businesses to be active in speaking up in
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favor of not only the pipeline but the oil sands developed -- development, and a lot of those companies, development, service -- businesses along the route, transmission, companies, the comfort inn in montana, home town computer services and south dakota and a number of these other places, those businesses understand this pipeline will bring jobs, will bring them opportunities to put people in their hotels, have people come to the restaurants, sell tires to the trucks they will use and a tremendous benefit to people up and down that pipeline. host: matt koch, from upstate in -- a native of buffalo, new york, new york, he worked in the department of energy and a veteran of the bush white house. you understand the politics. the white house said they were delaying a decision to the state department because it crosses international borders, in part to conduct a study to make sure it is safe. guest: we were really disappointed.
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we have been through -- they have been through numerous environmental impact statements. plenty of opportunities for public comment. they really isolated and looked at -- specifically in nebraska. there has been a real thorough examination of this. we felt the delay -- delay was not necessary. we thought they needed to make a decision. transcanada is looking at a $7 billion investment. it is a tremendous opportunity not only for jobs now but what they will bring in. to delay this further in these economic times is just unfortunate. we feel like we don't want this country to miss the opportunity. host: this program works with your calls and comments and e- mails and questions so we ask you to do so in a number of ways. send us an e-mail or joined the conversation on line. we will get to your calls in a moment. one of the related comments from this tweet --
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guest: that question has come up often get a lot of people raising the u.s. simply wants to export or refined products. the oil primarily is going to stay here. if you look at what the american demand is and what we need, how are refineries are not -- how they not only are retrofitted but designed to produce the products coming from oil sands, of course the companies want to be the to compete globally and of the global marketplace that dictates oil prices require or there is a need to exports of crude oil, that may happen. but i think principally if you look at what our demands are -- and we need more energy in our country, a lot more -- the market is here. that is why the canadians want to send it here.
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there are a lot of other countries looking for more energy, primarily in the east -- china and india. and when you have a huge demand year and a huge demand overseas, and canadians want to send it here, we would like to see it here. we think we can use it. host: background on what is the existing pipeline is. about 2,100 miles build at a cost of about $5 billion and producing on average about 435,000 barrels of oil a day. the extension of this pipeline would be built at a cost of $7 billion, adding an additional half a billion barrels of oil a day. a 1,600 mile pipeline. george is joining us from daytona, florida. republican line. with matt koch from the chamber of commerce. caller: i have to be suspicious and asked the obvious -- why own
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refinery? i come from the philadelphia area. i have been 20-25 years in the oil the industry. i understand the problems with refining, and the emissions and all of that stuff. we know the area where that oil wants to go is already producing or refining heavy sulphur fuels from venezuela. they are almost at capacity with venezuelan oil. where is venezuela's oil going to wind up? are we trying to get rid of venezuela in this country? and the original question, why doesn't canada build their own refinery? i will take the answer off the air. guest: i will try to answer it as best i can. speaking of the canadians, they are facing some of the same problems we had in trying to build a refinery in this country. certainly they had tremendous
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growth and their energy resources, but also, frankly, looking at the economics of building a refinery. we had trouble trying to some look -- sometimes look beyond the refinery expansion. breaking ground on a new refinery has been difficult to do in this country. trying to attract new capital but also what needs to be done for the permits. and the economics play out where the canadians get to the point where they can export the crude to the u.s. and if necessary a refining base that satisfies their own demands. in regards to venezuelan crude oil, i cannot speak to where that will go. we will import some into this country but if there are opportunities to this place that -- a more stable country that we have a better relationship, we will do that.
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host: this is from an e-mail. guest: i am from buffalo, new york, and i am proud to say my father is not one of the kock brothers -- he is a retired court reporter living just outside of buffalo. he is probably watching -- came home from church this morning and watching us. if i were that will it -- i would not be working for the chamber of commerce before christmas and talking with you. host: we are glad you're with us and we hope -- from annapolis, maryland. caller: what is the cost of refining the oil sands to the point where it can be transported -- by the way, i have no problems with the pipeline, i think it is the safest way. but what is the cost of refining
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-- refining it after it gets to the gulf refineries and what will the end price be at the gas pump for the american consumers? guest: a good question. certainly, as we were talking earlier, the oil sands have to compete in the global energy market and the global oil market as well and for a number of years, it was really costly to separate the oil from the sand and get it into the fashion that it can be fined. there is a process that they do, particularly in canada, to separate the oil. once it enters into the pipeline, it starts getting down to refiners, it looks and acts just like any other kind of crude oil. it is a little heavier. the refineries have been redesigned and number of years to handle the heavier oil. but it has to be able to compete in the global marketplace and
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compete against traditional typical oil products. the price will be dictated by what is happening in the market. certainly the refiners will take more on it if the price is competitive and they can refine it at a price that is the same as their other refined product. host: our guest, who handles oil sands and arctic issues for the chamber of commerce and i want to point out the governor of nebraska is a republican. i mention that because this tweet saying the state of nebraska does not want this pipeline because it puts one of their main water sources at risk and this is a republican state. fact or fiction? guest: there is some factor in that. there are a lot of concerns in places like nebraska and some neighboring states because of the pretension about someone else mentioning about oil spills and what could happen if there is a problem with the pipeline. but we think those concerns were aired and there certainly needs to be an opportunity to do that.
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there are also some environmentally sensitive areas in the hills the pipeline was boy to go through and a lot of people raised concerns, including the governor and senator joe hunt's -- johanns about the outlook for. there other pipelines that run through that awkward for -- aquifer. we think transcanada made a number of concessions and did a lot of work to alleviate the concerns. and what the state department's recent decision -- allowing nebraska and trans canada to work out the differences between what canada wants to do and the concerns from the citizens. host: the existing pipeline is just over 2,100 miles. daniel has this question -- how many miles does tar sands oil pipeline from canada already
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crossing u.s. territory? guest: i don't know the number. but there is the transcanada pipeline, enbridge pipeline, and other methods to get it into the country. it acts just like traditional oil, a conventional oil, and once it is in the pipeline, it gets distributed throughout the country so it is hard to say that you have specifically dedicated pipeline just for oil sands. earlier i was talking about in alberta they were planning on putting some of the conventional crude in the development in to that pipeline as well. host: i will stick one of these questions from but in north carolina asking how much will they will stay in the u.s., but he says also what will be the difference in price in the u.s. compared to the world market and who will pay for the pipeline? guest: transcanada is paying for the pipeline. they are building the pipeline
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themselves. as far as the price compared to the global market, again, our price is set by what is happening globally. at times when our prices are higher, we attract more imports. at time our supplies are doing well, even through u.s. 11 or other methods, it settled down based on what consumers will pay for it. so, i would not expect us this oil sands crude-oil would have any sort of higher price. in fact, having more supply and more availability and our access to flexible supplies will give us an opportunity to perhaps stabilise our market at a time there were big fluctuations and disruptions in the marketplace a more awesome the world. host: why not build a refinery in the northern state and what this be sold in the world market without benefit to american taxpayers? guest: no. i don't see the relationship of taxpayers. this is a company that has invested about $5.2 billion.
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you have state and local property taxes and other taxes are going to be paid to the great benefit of those people in those communities. the original question about refineries -- there are refineries in parts of this country. there is some refineries in minnesota, illinois, and michigan. they are already taking this type of crude oil. we talked about a pipeline that was previously built from alberta into the midwest. that was done becausethose refineries demanded they wanted that type of crude. there was a demand for it. the company build that pipeline in order to meet that demand. transcanada is looking at what the demand is for crude in parts of our country in the gulf region. they feel they can be competitive and bring in crude that will be competitive around the world. host: who will pay for the cleanup?
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let me add to that, from previous bills, who paid for it? guest: the companies are responsible. i am not a pipeline safety expert, but companies have some responsibility of that. also through tax dollars, there is money set aside to help pay for cleanups. and there is some responsibility, that certainly when you have government regulators, people in place to help resolve that and insure the cleanup is done to certain standards, but it is the company's responsibility. host: our guest is with the u.s. chamber of commerce talking about the transcanada pipeline and what is next in this process. the house included that with the overall tax measure, and the question remains whether the president will go along with it or whether this issue will be killed. what do you think is going to happen? guest: it is hard to say.
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we are hoping this will remain in whatever package is determined. it is been a messy few days. i know a lot of people in washington have made changes in their plans. all in all, we are hopeful like most americans that decisions can get made and people can get beyond this and a compromise can be made. at the end of the day, we are hopeful that this keystone provision will remain in the bill. host: the republican line, good morning, greg. caller: good morning, gentlemen. call. this is an excellent platform for americans to voice their opinion. obama will do everything in his power to kill this pipeline bill. there is a radical segment of
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the democratic party that will not allow anything like this to happen. we cannot build hydroelectric plants. we cannot drill in the pacific. there is a moratorium that is now lifting in the gulf. we cannot drill off the east coast. we cannot drill in nebraska. -- we cannot drill in alaska. every time there is a conflict in the middle east, gas and oil prices spike. it is the average american joe that suffers for this. everything goes up. inflation goes up. food goes up. everything goes up. it is harmful. we need this pipeline as a cushion during bad times when there is conflict.
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thank you so much for your time. host: thank you for your call. matt koch. guest: he raises a number of good points. i am involved working for the institute of energy. one of the issues that we promote it is our country needs a lot more energy infrastructure. there are different types of energy that's being developed in this country and we feel we need all of them. we need wind energy and alternative energies. without question, no matter what type of energy use support, we need energy infrastructure. we are certainly a lagging in the development of wind and renewable resources and also waged to move that energy around the country. one of the benefits of this pipeline is it will allow for this being developed in north
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dakota and wyoming to allow some of our domestic resources to enter into the marketplace. in addition, it is going to bring things like power in parts of rural america. north dakota has had tremendous growth in oil and gas, but for years, they have been looked at as a place for wind energy but there is no infrastructure to try to get that energy into the grid. we often face a banana syndrome -- build absolutely nothing anywhere -- where there are a lot of folks in this country who do not want to recognize that our country needs this energy infrastructure built. those things have to come from
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somewhere. we need this infrastructure. it is a challenge. it is well recognized by people across all energy sectors. host: how would you answer this question? guest: we would absolutely support that. we are a big supporter of domestic energy development of all types. it is been hard to find new places to drill in this country, but getting a refinery built in this country is very difficult. there has certainly been capacity added. equivalent to seven or 10 refineries built in this country because of expansion's. rebuilding on the existing footprint. we would support that. was a point that we need all types of energy.
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let's start here in america first. host: let me go back to friends of the earth who are concerned about the dirty tar sands oil, claiming -- guest: i think that is a reach. there have been studies done of this crude. it has slightly a higher profile of how it is been demonstrated, but the numbers have gotten better as this technology has gotten better. this resource has been a boon because frankly the people recognize that, recognizing that we need to develop this crude friendly way. the types of methods developed far exceed what was some of the message that were done 20 years ago as far as reducing footprint and having less
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environmental impact. as we continue to move forward bridge into these new technologies and find ways to get to that future where we can use alternative energies, we cannot turn our back on resources that are available. we recognize that technology and regulations are going to make things better. host: barbara is joining us. thank you for waiting. good morning. caller: good morning and thank you for c-span. i am totally against the pipeline. my family has been forming in nebraska since the 1800. -- my family has been farming in nebraska since the 1800's. we still had 80 acres there. we are very proud of that farm. the possibility of destruction from this pipeline is a very scary thought. i do not know a single nebraskan who is for this baloney. i think it is 7 million people's water system that could
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be affected. we only have one planet. let's stop destroying it. remember the bp oil disaster? they were telling us that situation was fined. -- fine. let's change our ways, clean up our act, and quit messing with the dirty energy and concentrate on getting something that will keep this planet going. or do you not care about that? do you believe in the rapture? are you one of those guys? host: we will get a response. guest: we certainly feel there is a need for all forms of energy. the bridge to a new energy future is not a short one. is going to take a while to get their. we need to develop technology to get all of these other
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alternatives as well. we need to continue to use the energy that we have now to bridge to the future. in regard to nebraska, i have been there a number of times to talk to folks. a lot of the feedback yard getting it is they do not oppose the pipeline. they oppose the route. some of those details are being worked out right now. the state legislature just passed a couple of bills, and regulators will meet with transcanada to try to look at different alternatives. 40 different route were considered during the phase that transcanada was looking at where to put the pipeline route. they settled on what they thought was the best one. at the end of the day, nebraskans have raised concerns about the route itself.
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but not against the pipeline itself. that is part of the process. host: let's go back to the map. we are talking about the transcanada pipeline. the source of the energy is where? guest: is in alberta. host: why the pipeline? why not just from trucks or rails? guest: a pipeline, again, by every sense of the way you can look at it, it is the safest way to get that crude down here. host: where does it go from the gulf coast? guest: what it does not show is a number of other routes that extend from the gulf refining regions to other parts of the country. there is a route that goes right up to mississippi and to the midwest. there are some dekko west and other parts of the country. there are a few that swings
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through the southern part of the southeast. just out here in fairfax, va., there is a pipeline and distribution point from their and other places in new jersey that help distribute some of that refined product in two refineries or toward gas stations and other places all around the northeast. host: i want to ask one other question. why not take it from alberta to washington state or california? it is a much shorter distance. and then distributed from there? guest: there are some refineries in washington. but the demand and the way to get more of this crude to more refineries -- the company made a business choice that this is the direction they wanted to go. to try to find ways to get the
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crude oil for those in the larger refining centers. host: next is mike joining us from michigan. independent line, go ahead. caller: yes, thank you for taking my call. i have seen a documentary. they show how they make it. it is a pretty good film. for americans, the bottom line is who is going to make this deal? is it going to be our trucking companies? is it going to be our welders? are we going to build this whole thing from scratch? are we really going to have american workers do all of this? that means a lot to me. i am a truck driver and a welter. -- welder. are we going to get in on this? is there a job out there for me? i will take my answer off the air. guest: thanks, mike. i think there are a lot of
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people interested in these jobs. we heard from people all over the country reaching out to us and over to the chamber to say -- "i have been out of work, so how can i get one of these jobs working on the pipeline? " we are certainly looking at this as a tremendous opportunity with a lot of job benefit by private sector investment. somewhere between 13,000 labor jobs in construction and anywhere from 6000 to 10,000 jobs will be created by truckers and other folks who will be bringing in supplies or selling tires and doing other sorts of things. but i want to raise another point about some of the benefits of construction. the areas that this pipeline is going to go through is going to see property tax benefits as well as other state and local tax benefit.
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when you look at some of these communities in south dakota, we had a gentleman who said "i live in a county of 5000 people. to have $500,000 of tax benefit is tremendous to us." we don't have any of the ways to create that type of revenue. as a result, he sees a great benefit to his business. we also hear from other builders and contractors and truckers who say this is going to mean we will build more roads, bridges, schools, recreational facilities, and things that we may not have had an opportunity to do before. so, this is a great boon not only for our community but for jobs in our community. host: respond to this comment from one of our viewers. there are a number of related tweets. guest: we are pushing for a number of alternative energy
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sources. this is a huge resource. we have found ways to make it more cost effective. as technology has gotten better, shell oil development and the potential for that in parts of the northwest and the southern part of the southwest of our country, the natural gas development that has happened in places like northern pennsylvania simply because this technology has gotten better. as the technology gets better, they will find less risky ways to do it. we do believe in alternative energy and we believe that we need to get their. -- there. we have a number of alternative energy companies, and we support and believe what they do. a lot of the infrastructure that is needed to develop the supply of energy is not here now. we need a bridge to get there.
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in the meantime, we need energy from somewhere. host: from your standpoint, are there lessons from the bp oil spill that can be applied to this? guest: i think so. there are certainly -- the impact has been there is more public awareness and more people engaged wanting to ask questions about what this means for this country bank regulators have had a chance to go back and look at some of the regulations as they often do and see if they meet not only wherever the new resources are or the new challenges due to technology. there have been some lessons learned. >> we will take you live to the white house, president obama speaking on the payroll tax cut debate. we expect him momentarily. live coverage on c-span. live coverage on c-span.
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