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tv   Public Affairs Events  CSPAN  November 11, 2016 2:00pm-4:01pm EST

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♪ >> ladies and gentlemen [inaudible] ladies and gentlemen, please
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welcome [inaudible] [applause] mr. patrick j. hallanan. executive director armor -- army cemetery program. [applause] mr. roberts one, polish legion of american veterans. [applause] honorable robert a. mcdonald, secretary of veterans affairs. >> ♪
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ladies and gentlemen, the president of the united states. >> ♪ [cheers and applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, please remain standing for the precession of our nation's colors and those of our veterans service organizations. as we watch on the colors, the u.s. navy band will play the national emblem march. please place your hand over your heart or render a hand salute. >> ♪
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let's please remain standing for the player -- prayer for all veterans. >> let us pray. almighty and eternal god who give us the freedom we enjoy in this great nation, come visit us
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in this most sacred garden where many of our veterans have gathered and many of our veterans and nations heroes rest. fill our hearts today with thankfulness for our veterans to answer the call to the -- to defend the honor and just causes of our nation. we thank you for their toriotism, their devotion liberty and justice, human dignity and rights, compassion, and self giving. we thank you for their diversity and for their unity in mission. let all who would forget more reach out -- war, reach out and compassion to those who must always remember. may the night more -- nightmares of all wars cease so that healing can take place. may each american find reason to seek to heale, and
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rather than destroy. renew our sense of unity, hope, and faith through times of testing and difficulties. god give us the joy of -- joyous spirit of celebration of our nation's veterans and their families area blesses now with your presence in the name of our god, who challenges us to care. amen. i would like to invite roberts one, national commander, polish legion of american veterans to lead us in our pledge of allegiance. >> a pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for ,hich it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty, and justice for all.
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>> please be seated. it is now my distinct pleasure to introduce the members of the veterans day national committee. the committee was formed by presidential order in 1954 to plan's annual observance in honor of americans veterans and to support veterans day observances throughout the nation. please hold your applause until i have introduced these special guests. if able, these stand when your name is called. robert swan, national commander, polish legion of american veterans, usa thomas stevens, national president, korean war veterans association. nationaly guide, commander, american g.i. forum. crawford. eberly, american express
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and as of four. karl singer, national commander, jewish war veterans of the usa. president, vietnam veterans of america. national president, paralyzed veterans of america. brian duffy, commander-in-chief, veterans of foreign wars of the united states. harold chapman, national commander, amvets. stampfer, blinded veterans association. commandant, marine corps leads. donald larson, national president, fleet reserve association. nationalnaldo, commander, legion of valor of the united states of america. smith, military chaplains
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association. donald youngblood, national commander, army and navy union of the usa. executive director, noncommissioned officers association. douglas bolt, national vice commander, the american legion. national riley, commander, disabled american veterans. legislative, deputy director, national association of uniformed services. rand, jr. adams, national president, the retired enlisted association. ver, military order of the verbal heart. and daniel atkins, national
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president, military officers association of america. the associate members are located in the boxes to my left. i would like to ask the president and national commanders that comprise our associate membership to stand and be recognized. ladies and gentlemen, please recognize our veterans national leadership with your applause. [applause] it is now my president -- pleasure to invite our host for 2016, polish legion of american veterans, usa. he polish legion also known as honored.
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founded after the ending of world war i, holding its first official convention in 1921. today they celebrate over 95 years of providing assistance to veterans and their families. chartered by congress, it represents over 3 million american veterans of polish descent who have served in all wars and conflicts of the united states since its inception. trainedwledgeable and service officers as well as representation and washington, d.c., it continues to provide assistance to deserving veterans and their families. with posts in chapters around the country, veterans and ladies axillary volunteers donate in the service and provide aid and support to hospitalized heroes. has scholarships
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available at the national and state levels providing financial aid to qualified students. they are represented today by their national commander. please welcome mr. robert swan. [applause] >> thank you. welcome, mr. president, mr. ,ecretary, veterans, friends and all of you gathered here today. honor that i am able to speak to you on this special day as the -- this marks the 95th anniversary of the polish legion of american veterans. lobbying, polish legion of american veterans, congress unanimously voted and proclaimed polish legionnaire polaski and honorary u.s. 2009,n and on november 6,
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president barack obama signed which law 111 -- 94 proclaimed him the seventh in history to receive this posthumous award or honor. he would like to wreck -- recognize the country should all servicemen and women who have provided while they were on active duty. volunteeringd which helps many veterans in and at the a hospitals homes and even individual families in need. the valued principles gained while in the military offers .any a pathway to success as a veteran or friend or family of a veteran, we know that our military members go through while serving and we know how hard it was and even is now when our service members return home. we are uniquely interested in helping in many ways but [inaudible]
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bear hospitals and homes are always in need of support. although membership in the veteran service organizations are declining i am pleased to see younger veterans are still joining or creating a newer, more specific organizations where they are able to continue to help our nation's veterans. now may we salute alabama military service members and their families that made that ultimate sacrifice. thank you for the honor of speaking to you today. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, please honorable ronald mcdonald, secretary of veterans affairs.
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>> mr. president, fellow veterans, honored guests. spielberg'sscene of saving private ryan, he kneels in front of captain miller's grave. captain miller gave his life in combat to save private ryan's. ryan says to miller, and all veterans, i have tried to live my life the best i could. a hope that at least in your eyes i have learned what all of you have done for me. -- i have learned what all of you have done to me. i imagine myself saying that every veteran resting here. i hope that in your eyes, i have earned what all of you have done for me. we would all do well to kneel at any one of these markers and repeat ryan's words. we would all do well to turn to
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a veteran and ask, am i earning this? today, rightgo here in arlington, president obama made a sacred vow to veterans. america will not let you down, he said. we will take care of our own. and then he fulfilled that bow. that vow. singleted the largest budget increase these as his first year. under his leadership, the ba budget has nearly doubled. he opened the doors to nearly half a million veterans who had lost their eligibility in 2003. he supported three presumptive conditions for veterans exposed to agent orange. today, even though there are 2
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million fewer veterans that in 2009, there are nearly 1.2 million more veterans receiving some type of ba care and care and-- va services. 1.2 million more veterans are enrolled for va health care. 1.3 million more perceived disability compensation. half-million more veterans have va homelands and we have seen a -- seven seat -- 76% increase. we have cut veteran homelessness in half since 2010. veteran unemployment has dropped. [applause] by over half in the last five years. for post-9/11
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veterans has dropped by 70%. america will not let you down, the president said. we will take care of our own. he stood by that commitment year after year after year, and for good reason. met sergeant first class corey rims berg when president obama introduced him during the each we 14 state of the union address. the president had met corey four and half years earlier in france . corey was one of the elite rangers who had parachuted into commemorate the d-day landings. then, corey returned to afghanistan for his 10th tour. the president next saw corey in a hospital bed in bethesda ow
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navel. he had been grievously wounded outside of kandahar. corey could not speak. he could barely move. but he gave the president a thumbs up. three years later, when the president and i traveled to phoenix, president obama quietly took a detour. .e needed to see corey corey had made miraculous problem -- progress in the trauma unit. this time, with help, corey said whatuted, and you would expect. rangers lead the way, sir. that is the epitome of rare combination of qualities that characterizes the very best among us. a dogged sense of duty, indomitable courage, and plain
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american grit. president obama admires that in corey. he admires it in all american veterans. it is why he loves them. ladies and gentlemen, our honored guest, the commander-in-chief and the 44th president of the united states, barack obama. [cheers and applause] president obama: thank you so much. thank you. much.you very thank you so much. thank you. thank you very much. please, thank you. thank you. please. thank you.
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mcdonald, distinguished guests, and most of all, our extraordinary --erans and her families your families, the last time i stood on these hollowed grounds on memorial day, our country came together to honor those who had fought and died for our flag. before, our nation observed armed forces day, honoring all who are serving under that flag at this moment. and today, on veterans day, we honor those who honored our country with its highest form of service. you who once wore the uniform of , navy, air force, marines, or coast guard, we owe
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you our thanks. we owe you our respect. and we owe you our freedom. we come together to express our for the gratitude sacrifices and contributions in you and your family made on the home, and it out posts around the world. but america's gratitude to her veterans is something always grounded in something greater than what you did on duty. it is also an appreciation of the example that you continue to set after your service has ended. citizens.le as veterans day often follows a hard-fought political campaign. an exercise in free speech and self-government that you fought for.
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it often lays bare disagreements across our nation. the american instinct has never been to find isolation in opposite corners, it is to find strength in our common creed. to forge unity from our great diversity, it to sustain that strength and unity even when it is hard. over,en the election is as we search for ways to come together, to reconnect with one another, and with the principles that are more enduring than transitory politics, some of our best examples are the men and women we salute on veterans day. of young example americans, our 9/11 generation who as first responders ran into smoldering towers, then ran to
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her recruiting center and signed up to serve. the example of a military that meets every mission, one united team, all looking out for one another, all getting each other's backs. it is the example of the single most diverse institution in our country. soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coast guard who represent every order of our country, every shade of humanity. immigrant and nativeborn. muslim, jewish, and nonbeliever alike, all forged in the common service. it is the example of our veterans, patriots, who, when they take off their fatigues put back on the camouflage of everyday life in america and partners andsiness bosses, our teachers and coaches
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and first responders city council members, community , role models, still serving our country with the same sense of duty and of valor. a few years ago, middle student -- school student entered an essay contest about why veterans are special and this is what he wrote. when i think of a veteran, i think of men or women who will be the first to help an elderly the street. across i also think of someone who will defend everyone regardless of their race, age, gender, hair color, or other discriminations. office, it years in particularly appreciate that he included hair color. but that middle school or is
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right. our veterans are still the first to help, first -- still the first to serve. they are women like the retired military policewoman from buffalo who founded and amvets post and is building a safe place for homeless female veterans with children. [applause] they men like the veterans from tennessee, one in his 50's and one in his 60's hiromi to say they would happily suit up and ship out if we needed them. "we might be just a little old," they wrote, "but we will be proud to go and do what we were taught to do." whenever the world makes you cynical, whenever you seek true humility and true selflessness, look to a veteran. look to someone like first lieutenant irving lerner.
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irving was born in chicago to russian jewish immigrants during world war i. he served as a bombardier in the army air corps, flying dozens of missions toward the end of world war ii. when he returned home, irving did what a lot of veterans do -- he put away his medals, he kept humble about his service, started living a quiet life. one fall day, walking down sheffield avenue on chicago's north side, a stranger stopped him. he said, "thank you for your service" -- and he handed him a ticket to see the cubs play in the world series. [applause] now, it's a good thing irving took that ticket because it would be a while until his next chance. [laughter] irving worked hard, managing the
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warehouse for his brother-in-law's tire company. he got married -- to a sergeant in the women's air corps, no less. he raised four children -- the oldest of whom, susan, is celebrating her 71st birthday today. and on a june morning many years ago, another one of irving's daughters, carole, called to check in. her mother answered but was in a rush. "we can't talk," she said, "your father is being honored and we're late." carole asked, "honored for what? and the answer came: for his heroism in the skies above normandy exactly 50 years earlier. irving's children never knew that their father flew over those french each heads d-day, he never mentioned it. check inthey call to his children always say thank you for saving the world. , sharp as ever at 100
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years young, always replies, i have a little help. whenever the world makes you thecal, whenever you doubt correct -- that courage and goodness and selflessness is possible, stop and look to a veteran. they don't always go around telling stories of their heroism, so it's up to us to ask and to listen, to tell those stories for them, and to live in our own lives the values for which they were prepared to give theirs. it's up to us to make sure they always get the care that they need. as bob mentioned, when i announced my candidacy for this office almost a decade ago, i recommitted this generation to that work. and we've increased funding for veterans by more than 85%. we've cut veteran homelessness almost in half. today, more veterans have access
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to health care and fewer are unemployed. [applause] we helped disabled veterans afford prosthetics. we're delivering more mental health care services to more veterans than ever before because we know that not all wounds of war are visible. together, we began this work. together, we must continue to keep that sacred trust with our veterans and honor their good work with our own, knowing that our mission is never done. it is still a tragedy that 20 veterans a day take their own lives. we have to get them the help they need. we have to keep solving problems like long wait times at the va. we have to keep cutting the disability claims backlog. we have to resist any effort to outsource and privatize the health care we owe america's veterans. [applause]
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on veterans day, we acknowledge, humbly, that we can never serve our veterans in quite the same that they served us. but we can try. we can practice kindness. we can pay it forward. we can volunteer. we can serve. we can respect one another. we can always get each other's backs. that is what veterans day asks all of us to think about. the person you pass as you walk down the street might not be wearing our nation's uniform today. but consider for a moment that a year or a decade or a generation ago, he or she might have been one of our fellow citizens who was willing to lay down their life for strangers like us. and we can show how much we love our country by loving our neighbors as ourselves. may god bless all who served and still do.
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and may god bless the united states of america. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, please remain standing and joined the united states navy band in seeing "god bless america or co- america."ess
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god bless america lovethat i
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stand beside her and guide her through the night with a light from above the mountains to the prairies to the ocean white with foam my home sweetica, home my home sweetica, home ♪
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[applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, please remain standing as we retire the colors. retire the colors. >> ♪
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>> this concludes the 2016 national veterans day observance. please be seated for the departure of the president of the united states. thank you for joining us today as we celebrate and honor all serve.ved -- all who [cheers and applause] ♪ [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
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♪ >> the replaying and ceremony at arlington national cemetery is how the church honor the men and women who served in the armed inces originally observed 1918, more than 116,000 americans died in the great war. members of congress at the program and active across the country at various veterans day events and tweets representative -- eliot engel honoring our veterans on a beautiful day at the younger's ceremony. senator wicker of mississippi tweeting about his activities on veterans day speaking with vets at the local veterans day program. grateful for each and every veterans noble service. senator rod -- rob portman. i'm proud to support our ohio veterans in the senate. virginia foxx north carolina
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tweeting, america's the land of the free because we are the home of the brave. paul ryan, and house speaker grading veterans outside the capital, this was earlier, they straight2 hours raising $1 million for veterans who suffer from ptsd. >> this is 22 hours, mrs. 22 pounds. -- this is 22 pounds. great to meet you. >> 22 hours. >> now a form on the election results in what is ahead of -- for issues like health care, immigration, and other domestic
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concerns. also the what to expect from into the new session and the priorities of president trumps administration. >> good morning and thank you. we should -- it is a very packed schedule, we will jump in very quickly. , whattle of this panel is did we choose? the revolution, what is next. you have them in your program, filion this morning for -- filling in this morning for michelle bernard, our white house correspondent john bennett. i want to start with you because you are the representative of the second, third, or fourth most reviled industry in america. the polling industry. should you just declare
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collective bankruptcy and go home, what is next for the polling industry, what did we miss, and keep it snappy. for numberooting one. we will make polling great again. [laughter] ofthere is many stages grief. i also say a couple things. first is the polling failed but here is what it failed at. tofailed to give certainty an uncertain event. i think that is in a lot of ways the problem with polling right now. we can go through the methodological issues. it is well-worn territory and something we need to think of as an industry. for all of you we also think about what you are as a consumer and what you are looking for. i will say this going into this election.
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as everyone called me, the question is not to find out what is going on. it is to reassure them that they can know what is going to happen. to that end, i think we created an illusion for polling which is that that is happening down the road and because we have done this many polls and we have this much data, we have certainty and for better or worse, polling has iser been and is it now -- not different from weather forecasting. each day is another opportunity. onn on the day of the storm, election day, the exit polls got it wrong. we all went, those of us in the liberal media and i will plead guilty, we wrote stories saying that she won because that is what the exit polls told us we were safe to start writing. grexit is possible that methodological issues we talked about which go beyond online
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polling and all the rest to try to reach different offices by go to something else which is willingness of people to take polls is what i think led to the most let -- misleading outcome. i will say briefly i do not andk there was people lying saying i am voting for clinton versus trump. there is a term for it or who was never reluctant but is reluctant are difficult to reach. that is a problem that we cannot sell -- a soft by adding more calls or by turning to big data and to hire levels of analytics. your view? >> exit polls have been disastrously bad. the over represent your people as well as other method log -- methodological problems. exit polls state the had us down 4.
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i was getting calls from how we were using -- we were losing by four and then by 13. --e not had a lot of act confidence of exit polls. when you look at what it is used for that is the important thing. people want this crystal ball but in terms of a campaign you use polling for not the horse race, you want to allocate wanted resources to persuade his many voters as possible. what polling will tell you is bernie sanders has a hour and a half step speech. what part is most persuasive pollingch segment and was effective at telling us what we should do in that regard. discuss inve on and the aggregate, what do all the polls, should they tell us about where this country wants to be taken next.
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>> the most important polls is one we had on tuesday. that is the one we should look at in terms of where the country should go next. --46 presented [indiscernible] >> that is the poll that manners and clearly, we can talk about this in depth. the flaws they were exposed in the campaign with bernie sanders. they were out of touch with working-class voters and young voters. >> there is a real failure in this ason, i mean someone who lives here and is from here. we talk about bipartisan compromise, about people talking together and everyone wants that but there is one issue over the past when he years and has had
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consistent bipartisan support and that is trade. there is only one issue. there is only one issue that brings together sanders supporters and trump supporters and is the thing that is activating and getting people going more than anything right now and that is trade on the opposite side. people made the argument they do not understand how trade helps them. after 25ain point years of doing the same thing and seeing the same result we have to realize that maybe here in washington we are not really hearing people and you cannot educate people out of their firm believes, you have to figure out what is going wrong. >> do you think that the obama --te house feels like it is it understood the american electorate until the end? how are they, what will be there -- what will be the president's message to mr. trump today?
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>> i believe the obama white house thought they understood the electorate at least to the point of helping hillary clinton 270 electoral votes. until about a week and a half ago. while you may have heard on cable news that president obama is having so much fun on the trail and let's play this clip and he is so good at this and he is the happy warrior and he will push her over the finish line. i saw something else. i believe i saw a president for what he was, the campaigner in chief for what he was. i believe he realized the week and a half, maybe a week ago that she was in serious trouble michigan,vania, and in north carolina, in florida. and a president got him out there was michigan. i think the members scared him you saw him talking
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about the republican, the world is teetering on this election. -- he saysiticism what he is thinking and feeling. he does not posture a lot. was striking in his rhetoric on the stump. >> what will he tell president-elect trump in terms of, do you think he will say here is what you need to understand about the country you are taking over or will it just be promises of constitutional responsibility for a transition? >> i think the latter. president obama was impressed with how president bush and his team handled the transition. was thorough, professional, very in depth and he said we were ready to roll and a one, they want to ensure, the talked about this for months
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and when secretary clinton was comfortably ahead. they want to make sure that the they administration -- want them to feel in even more prepared than they were coming in the door. that is what today will be about, making promises about what you need, i am here for you, i told mike team x y and z and he wants continuity to the greatest extent they can get that. >> thank you. base of trump supporters and the allies, collection of your supporters, this is trying something here when i say they oath want to seem to roll back the economy to the last century in some way. that is not happening. can donald trump govern the country? >> i think the way you put it is
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completely wrong. that is why people watching do not understand what is going on out in the world. all of the things that were manufactured are still being manufactured, they are just being manufactured somewhere else and people are buying these products in these to manufacture them. -- it is like we are not like the days of ugly whips. tremendous tremendous they want to make the problem --
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products that their family buys. >> let me get to the notion of what pollsters are looking at.
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people buy things cheaper. leaving that third piece aside, people do not perceive any sense of job security and any sense that the job they have today is something they want to have for the long-term. you put those two things together and you have people who , most people have a college degree and some people without have no idea what things will look like and to say the folks -- to folks answers to have more trade and i am not talking about what people expect, i am talking about the visceral reaction of people raising a family. when you talk to them and we need to do more listening in addition to polling, you hear and uncertainty. why would i trust either side and either side has -- neither side has delivered. i am not saying that means roll
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the clock back. people want something real and tangible and that is the reason .hy received 2p actually million fewer votes than lizard john mccain in his words -- loser john mccain, in his words. 2004 and -- and 2016 looked similar. >> he got fewer votes. >> that sounds right. >> anything of something
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ofgible -- can you think something tangible to address the issues? -- how they will approach trade is different. putting -- thinking about putting carl icahn in charge of trade. differentders has a crew folks who would be in their negotiating it. ultimately if people want to be elected they have to listen to what people feel. we live in a rarefied environment. a affluent suburb. it looks like the gilded age here.
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michigan orh wisconsin, it is a different reality. >> i do not quite understand, i hurdles to bring back these jobs, how does any administration bring back as many jobs as he is talking about and so many different places but hurdles, automation and corporate profits. companies want to have -- make money. i have been told by bosses my entire career that people are by -- my biggest expense and automation, you can make things faster and cheaper with machines. those are big hurdles to how he is going to revise this manufacturing economy. true.is likely to be i will say one thing that trump did what many would toue was a outreach
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african-americans and he said you don't have much to lose. you know who heard that, everybody else. peoplesay you are talking about here that and say, you know what, maybe they don't have anything to lose, but i hear that argument that says, there's no hope for a job, well, what do i have to lose, to go with the guy who says the could be jobs? >> so, i will start by going two years down the track, and then we come back. so what happens, you two, sort of avatars of the outsider here. what happens in two years, you know, when the mine is not reopened and the wall is not up? >> you mentioned that the
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democrats would do well in the midterm. that assumes he has not solidified the base. maybe the wall will be up. that is something that could be created. i obviously don't support it. it is, excuse the pun, a concrete accomplishment. >> and the willingness of a republican, fiscally conservative, small government congress. >> i heard mexico is going to pay for it. >> just theoretically, what if that doesn't work out? [laughter] >> first of all, to go back to your earlier question, a way that he could make progress and make a lot of people happy, satisfy his voters, and many people who did not vote for him, would be to push for infrastructure. but you are right, the congress may come against it, which comes back to what was originally called, "can you govern." regardless of who won, the answer is, you cannot govern but you can get things done, and i think that's what we have seen. the notion of governing in the traditional sense, the notion of, we have a leader, people have disagreements, and in the end we fall in line and we have handling at some point, that is
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not there at right now. >> i agree on infrastructure. the conventional wisdom was the first initiative of the hillary administration would have been an infrastructure program funded by tax repatriation, so there's clearly appetite on both sides to do infrastructure work. >> there is an appetite. i said it a minute ago. there is an appetite, among trump and nancy pelosi yesterday, sort of reached out to him on that one point and said, yes, we could work together on infrastructure. but his alleged colleagues in the republican majorities, they are not in the mood. paul ryan said flatly, that is not part of my agenda. we just did a highway bill. we just spent $300 billion over the next few years. we will not spend $5 trillion, the number trump has been throwing around. so i guess i wonder, just, does the electorate want this? where's the juice for this? how does this president with a
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narrow mandate, ultimately 290 votes in the electoral college, and a narrow loss in the popular vote, does he have a mandate? >> on this particular issue, everybody who, i'm trying to think of a major candidate who did not advocate some kind of significant increase in infrastructure spending. sanders had a trillion dollar plan. hillary clinton had a plan. trump had a plan. i do think this is an issue on which there was at least among the people running for president pretty broad consensus, that there needed to be an infusion. and it brings together industry people, it brings together unions who will get behind it, so the players in washington who are around this will come together pretty nicely. it's the paying for it part that is the messy part. >> the reality is, we now know which trump we are going to get. the eventual, angry trump, clearly part of who he is, and he will be looking to punish some segments of the republican party, some segments of the
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democratic party, and sort of get his debts paid. if that's the case, nothing will get done. there's another side of trump which we can also look to, the which we can also look to, the guy loves to build big stuff. we can argue about how he does it, whether he pays for it, that type of thing, but he actually has pride in standing beside big holes and new bridges and things like that. [laughter] so, if that's the trump that gets there, and he loves to stand in front of his new hotels, i think there's a chance that he would actually do that. he will say, this is cool, this is something we want to do, and i think republicans are going to come in line. because as much as we talked about how if hillary won republicans would be a huge obstacle, because she has no support there, if he says jump, they will say, how high. >> on these issues. >> absolutely.
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>> it will be interesting to see, and i think that's entirely correct. he loved to stand behind his projects when they are completed. what happens, and how does he respond, how does his team respond, when congressional conservatives say, we are not voting for that, we are not paying for that, and then he doesn't get his infrastructure built, how does he respond? the trump presidency, i hate to say first term, but it could pave it on how he reacts, and does he become the vengeful trump? >> from a polling perspective, if he came out strong on infrastructure and actually started to say, we are going to build this wall, i think his numbers would go up, and i think that is what will make congressional leaders change their mind. >> the other thing, he's not a traditional washington kind of personality, so we don't know to what extent he's willing to put together congressional coalitions that may have majorities of democrats involved. right-leaning republicans have traditionally tried not to push initiatives that didn't have majority republican support in
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the congress. to what extent is he willing to say, well, i have a third of republicans and a group of democrats willing to come along, i will put together the coalition on this issue. what is his willingness to do that? >> and what is paul ryan's willingness to then pass bills with democrats pushing them across the finish line? >> right. >> so you all would agree, he is, well, would you all agree, that he is the least ideologically rounded president since, since clinton, i guess, or maybe before? is he a nonideological president? are we actually going to get the sort of break of the gridlock, because he's a non-ideologue? >> so far we have talked about the optimistic side of him, but i think there's a real fearful side of it. i would not want to put him in
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that box, because of some of what he did, and talked about on the campaign trail, scares folks. and i think scares people who understand both foreign policy and domestic policy. so i don't think he's driven by ideology. i think he's driven by ego, and by his belief about what is right at any certain time. so certainly in terms of the traditional way we think of ideology, absolutely, the least ideological person. >> this is a guy who was first single-payer, and now is getting rid of obamacare. he said some very negative things about gay rights, but has been a supporter of gay rights in the past. used to be pro-choice, now he is pro-life. so where he is, his ideology to the extent he has one at all, and is there one, or is it just a performance, is trump just performance art, is an open question at this point. >> we don't really know. is trumpism an ideology that is still being defined and will kind of feeling the lines as we go, starting in 70-something days? or is he going to hew more closely to a traditional
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republican or even something farther to the right? i don't think we know that yet. >> where else do you think, other than infrastructure, the one thing he did mention in his victory speech on wednesday, early wednesday morning, what's your best sense of where he wants to go, top priorities, and where do you think the electorate said he should go? >> well, he clearly wants to go around taxes, there are initiatives he talked about a lot, personally and otherwise during the campaign. and obviously there will be a tremendous amount of pressure from the republican establishment to try to push forward tax reform, particularly at the corporate level. trade, i think there's a tremendous amount. to the extent he has a mandate from the grassroots people who voted, in small towns in wisconsin and michigan, other places that voted for him, north carolina, it is on trade. and he has to start something on that fairly quickly or i think his credibility with that constituency will fade very quickly.
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>> and to go a step further to what trump wants to do, if you look day-to-day, he wants to argue, he wants to negotiate, and he wants to build stuff, and the best opportunity for all three of those are infrastructure and trade. also, the area of foreign policy becomes a place where he's going to become interested in a real hurry, because of the way in which he will have control over a lot of those decisions, and that is what gives people a lot of positive now. we talked about -- a lot of pause right now. we talked about paul ryan, mcconnell, people who could be checks on him. that is a place may be for another panel, where he can find he can do things that he likes to do there. that is in the end, people across the aisle would agree, what drives them to do what he does, what feels good to him, what feels right. >> that unilateral ability to do things, i feel there will be a huge push on regulations at the beginning, executive orders,
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repealing executive orders around a host of issues. it will happen very quickly. >> yes. the president who spent so much of his second term focusing on three things, the pen, the phone, and the microphone, whatever, sort of the mantra there. it will be interesting to watch whether it republican congress that was so angry at president obama for his use of executive power, whether they will be internally consistent or probably not internally consistent at all in welcoming donald trump using assertive executive power. >> right. and if you look at the numbers on executive orders, they were becoming more and more popular for presidents. not just president obama, president bush, even president clinton. the thing about lawmakers, they hate executive orders except when their guy is the one signing them, so i would, you know, donald trump, he is a business guy, accustomed to making the call.
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i don't think there's any reason to believe he will not use executive orders liberally. maybe not at first. maybe once he starts dealing with congress and seeing how difficult it can be to get things done, maybe in a year or two i would look for that to pick up. >> you all think the electorate was voting for somebody who would just come in and break stuff, assert himself, and while they want congress, they want washington to work, which those of us who live inside the beltway, inside the bubble, took ap civics, think means one thing. maybe the country thinks it means something totally different, which is just some guy who will come in and get 'er done all by himself? >> let's go back to the most important part. it remains an incredibly divided electorate. he doesn't have a mandate, in terms of the traditional notion, in terms of the lyndon johnson 1964, ronald reagan 1980 type of mandate.
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having said that, yes, there are a lot of people who voted for him because they want to break stuff, and most important, they want to break stuff because they don't believe the consequences will be worse. by telling people who are desperate, who see their lives coming apart at the seams, and see their future coming apart, to say to them, you don't know how much worse it could be, their response is, no, you have no idea how bad things are right now. so i think that that is a mandate for both parties for the next couple of years, and for elections going forward. >> listen, the people don't, george w. bush, they would pull him, and then they would poll his issues and they were all unpopular. barack obama was not a particularly ideological candidate in terms of having super detailed policies.
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some of the clinton people would say they have many more detailed policies than he did in 2008. people vote for president for a lot of reasons. leadership. they want something they like. they didn't really get it this time, although they probably perceived both candidates as not particularly likable. but they, like ability is an important factor. leadership is an important factor. all these intangibles that go into picking a president, i think in many cases become more important than where you are on this issue, that issue. >> it's interesting to note just one, one exit poll which i think is being repeated by everybody, 46% of the vote from an electorate, 63% of which think he's temperamentally unsuited to be president and 60% of which think he's unqualified to be president. so, discuss. what is there to say about that? >> i think one thing that is important as we think about the
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trump presidency and what people said when they came in, it is a lot of the norms we have come to expect in washington. people have been pushing the edge of them in washington, and i think they are finding, it's not a locked door, it's an open door. and i go to the supreme court hold up. i go to the executive order, things like that. it is becoming pretty clear that the idea that we need to have a fully functioning supreme court, we need to not have executive power, that gets lost, and the norms that have held us together, if they get broken, could have electoral consequences. >> we may have time for a couple of questions from our audience. if anybody is feeling particularly crispy, please go first. see the microphone? thank you. >> i am jill weinberg with pbm. do you think budget deficits matter anymore? >> that was going to be my next question. thank you. >> from a political standpoint
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or economic standpoint, because those are different questions? >> of course they matter from an economic standpoint, but from a political standpoint. does trump and the republicans have to pay for tax cuts, for infrastructure, repealing obamacare, cbo says that would cost billions of dollars, etc. >> from an opinion perspective, the way people process things, issues like debt and trade inside of washington, and among a lot of folks, you say the word trade, you say the word debt, and people understand the consequences or benefits. i think for most voters, they are just a piece and you need to go to the next step, to say what are the consequences, and for that reason, i don't think debt per se or trade per se, going either way on them causes either opinion shifts or electoral shifts. you need to convince people that running up debt would be a problem, and i think if a president trump said, i need to run up a debt to pay for
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infrastructure and put the down payment on the wall before it gets paid back, people will accept that. >> i don't think, it is not, certainly in this election cycle it was not a driver among people i met out on the trail, or encountered. you know, part of the problem is, there is no, i mean, both sides encourage tremendous amounts of debt. bush incurred tremendous debt for his plans. obama incurred tremendous debt for his plans. nobody paid the political price for that. there isn't one. [laughter] >> somebody else standing at a microphone? >> yes. two questions. first of all, given trump's own background that many of his
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products were made cheaply overseas, and that he bought chinese steel instead of american steel, given his own background, why was he then consider such an effective messenger on trade, when his own record didn't really match his rhetoric? that's the first question. second question, now that we have had two elections in the past 16 years where the popular vote has been different than the electoral vote, why are we still holding onto the electoral college, something that many argue is a very outdated, anti-democratic system? >> you represented a candidate who thought the electoral system was broken. >> well, it is, we could have a whole for our panel about -- four hour panel about the democratic primary process and how it is broken, having to do with money and what have you. but in terms of trump being a
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messenger, i think trump was effective in saying, i operate in a certain milieu, i hang out with rich people, i give money to candidates, including the clintons, because that is familiar i was forced to operate. and as president, i will change those rules and function differently. i didn't find that all that convincing, but i guess many people did, at the end of the day. they said, we understand it, you are a business guy, you have to lobby, you have to do the things we find distasteful, but that is the nature of the beast. for the electoral college, i think it does have to be some kind of reform. i come from vermont. i do like to think it gives a small place a little more impact, but i think we need to do something, if it's only to go to some kind of proportional allocation of electors within a state, maybe that's the first step, i don't know. i would not be opposed to abolishing it. you have to look at the implications of doing that. we had 20-some odd battleground states, people running around.
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you have to understand, if you do away with that, do you have candidates only advertising and hanging out in populated centers? you have to think about the ramifications, not only of the election, but how that candidate relates to people in very estates, where are they going to campaign -- various states, where are they going to campaign, are people going to be left out? there are broader ramifications, but changes i think are necessary. >> that is precisely right. you are going to take the money and allocated all to california, new york, texas, florida, as opposed to being in places like florida but also other parts of the country, so you have to pick your poison in that respect. one other quick thing, going back to the first question. we have had two elections were the popular vote is different from the electoral college, but three of the last five elections have been elections in which one side thought they won and the
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other side thought they lost, at some point in the evening, and then really believed it, and that shifted. and that is sort of -- that sort of swing is something that was notable. for those on the democratic side, they were on the short end of the stick in all three examples, but i will also say, that is one of the reasons why a lot of folks are feeling a little traumatized from this election. not just that they lost, but that people thought they had won and people who thought they had lost won. >> we will move along. jeff weaver, thank you so much. doug, thank you so much. john, thanks for joining us. we will make a quick transition for our next panel. [applause] >> so now while we do that, i just want to have a little bit of housekeeping details. we will have three panels in the morning and two breaks during the day. we will have lunch at 12:45. if you missed them when you came in, there are three things, the conference brochure which has
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all the bios of our distinguished guests, the latest "roll call," which has been redesigned and looks terrific and has wonderful reporting, including john bennett's about the election. and then the new member's guide. the election impact conference has been held every other year since 1980, and inside this is a terrific amount of information about every newly elected member, the power structure of congress, and where the landscape lies. i will join my distinguished guests. i may have to be, can you hear me? all right. this gentleman doesn't need much of an introduction. so i will keep it short. eric cantor is at the moment a vice-chairman, and business executive.
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he was the majority leader until 2014, and the u.s. -- in the u.s. house of representatives. he started in the virginia house of delegates in 1992 and moved over to the house in 2000. 2001 was when you entered office. you have a reputation for progrowth policies, and sticking to principles. and you were the early warning system, i think, of what we had happen on tuesday, because you lost in a shock primary challenge in 2014. let me start with where the other panel ended. do you think the country can continue to have elections where somebody gets the most votes but doesn't take the office? >> you know, i think our constitution is quite a document. it is a brilliant document, and
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i know there are parts of it that trump would speak to and say, that doesn't work. my sense is right away, if you want to change that document, that is a tall order, uphill climb. but i do think, and one of the comments in the prior panel said, if you want to go and concentrate all the dollars, all the conversation, all the money on the coast and in the big cities, that is what you will do if you get rid of the electoral college. and the beauty of our country is, it is diverse, and part of that diversity is geography. clearly one of the thematics coming out of this campaign is,
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there is a lot of country out there, and it does not think like this town things, like new york things, like l.a. thinks, and part of the richness of our culture and the brilliance of the vision of our founders was to make sure that we didn't get so single visioned and maintained that broad sense of vision that the country can offer. so i am thinking we are fine. david: ok. tell me, my six-year-old said to me, i told him i was interviewing somebody very important. he said, you always should start by saying, how was your day? i want to ask, how was your day yesterday? [laughter] mr. cantor: listen, i'm good. i'm really good. david: but how surprised were you, really? mr. cantor: i started the day, you know, by thinking, listen, i am no stranger to elections that can give you a surprise. [laughter] and, you know, i talked to my kids. i have three kids, two in this town and one in palo alto, and i told them, look, because they, as you know, there's been a lot of chatter, a lot of activity in the streets of the big cities especially.
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san francisco, washington, new york, where there were heavy concentrations of hillary clinton supporters, and they have now taken to the streets in demonstration. but i think my kids, having been through two years ago when my family went through, a real shocker, they too say, look, worse things can happen. we live in a great country. life will go on. and so, i saw the election returns, and like many of you probably could not sleep afterwards because of all the thoughts conjured up of what lies ahead of our country. as a republican, very heartened to see that both the house and the senate republican, now able to work with a republican white house. i did caution myself, in that positive vein of thought, and say, you know, there are no excuses now. my party has to act. david: yes. david hawkins, who ran the other
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panel, started his column at 3:00 in the morning and said, you broke it, you own it. i know you wouldn't agree with the first part of that phrase. mr. cantor: listen,, we can have that discussion. david: let's have that discussion. how do we put this thing together? one of the reasons i'm really excited you are here, is of course you are now a businessman, so both perspectives. we will get into that. let's start with that. this election, both the primary and the general, revealed a real gap between the political class and middle class in america. so let's start with that. because if you are advising the democrats, do you say, your only hope is obstruction? if so, that just perpetuates the broken nature of the institution. mr. cantor: well, you know, when you look at this election, and i can't really ask this question, who has read that book by ginny
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vance, hillbilly elegy? i just finished the book. i don't know if it was purposely written and published around this election, but what it is sort of indicative, i think, of a culture in a certain region of the country that perhaps is reflected elsewhere, of a broad swath of demographics that really has been disaffected and left out. for a variety of reasons, generational, just hasn't seen that kind of hope and aspiration and ability to rise that i think most of us would like to say that we and our kids had. and that is what donald trump tapped into, that disaffected sense, that anger, that notion that washington is really broken, when it comes to solving problems for that group of people. and it is quite something. if you look at the way that he
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spoke to the voters, and listen, i was one of the first, when he would say some of the things that were vulgar or distasteful, to speak out, as many people in this town did on my side of the aisle, denouncing that kind of language, or those kind of things. but, you know, peter thiel said it at the republican convention in cleveland, something that i am very -- found very, very wise. that was, media, for many in this room, media took trump literally, whereas voters took him seriously. and that, that is something to think about. because when he said some of the things that seemed so outrageous, there was this general sense that he was conveying to people who may not be living in this bubble of
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washington, new york, l.a., and the rest. so i think it is about not speaking in this washington garble, approaching problems, given our society as it is today of the 24/7 rabbit information flow, to penetrate through to demonstrate that you hear somebody. now you get to the point where you have to go execute on those visions you put out there, because there's not a lot of granularity yet as to what exactly that means in a trump white house. david: absolutely. now, do you think the legislative agenda is really going to be provided by paul ryan?
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mr. cantor: they have been working on tax reform now for some time. it goes back to later, when dave camp presented the initial white paper. i think they will be ready. i think most of us were taken by surprise at the outcome of the election, and i guess no one, neither party's ever really ready until the time comes. but i know there are some smart mines, hard-working people ready to take the mantle and drive. now, donald trump seems to me to be one that clearly is going to have an idea of where he wants to take things. so having worked in congress and being elected during the bush years when we controlled everything, i look back on those years, and the white house has a lot to say, and a lot of influence on what happens, so i do think there will have to be some initial trying to feel out whose role is what and how it will play out. david: let's talk a little more about the politics.
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on paper, donald trump is the last vessel for that kind of discontent. a billionaire, glitzy television guy, famous, yet people who come from much more modest circumstances who are traditional politicians were not able to speak to that. so how does the republican party absorb, process, and speak to that in legislation over the next two years? mr. cantor: if you are going to ask, how do we observe it politically, i would say "done," because certainly donald trump has brought those voices, those people with that disaffected sense, into the republican polls. i think, david, you put your finger right on it. that is the challenge for the party now. how do we go in, and i say, more practically respond to the problems that exist, and not always adhere to the just strict ideological view. so much of what i remember the struggle was when i was in office, and in leadership was to try and say to fellow
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republicans and conservatives, we need to be able to put our conservative principles of limited government, individual empowerment, free markets to work for people. and we have to be able to demonstrate the benefit of those principles, not just say because it is limited government, because it works toward balancing budgets, that it is necessarily good. and i do think that donald trump probably has a much better way of being able to convey that. mr. ellis: i don't think i know him very well. but the thing i feel i really know about him is that he wants to be a winner, and ideological purity may or may not be the path to being a winner. winning on legislation, winning on jobs, and of course winning reelection. mr. cantor: you know, my partner, the founder of the firm i am now with, on the board of directors as well, he actually was one of donald's bankers a while back.
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he actually predicted a month ago that he thought trump was going to win. many of us, i think most people were saying, that was not going to happen. and he said, because what donald is selling is not just, yes, we want to win, and americans like to win, but also he was selling, i am a good deal maker, i'm a good deal maker, i know how to go and get you the better deal. if you think about the swath of the electorate that came out that the party has had some difficulty bringing out, in the rust belt states over the last several decades, that's what they are looking for. they are looking for a shot in life. they are looking for somebody to say, i will deal you a better deck, i will give you a better shot to climb up the ladder.
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so, yes, i think that will probably be the narrative or the prism through which this white house will look at what happens in this legislative process. mr. ellis: let's talk about the junior partner and all that, the democratic party. it seems to me in the last 36 hours people have been in a fetal position. there has been a very low representation of lawmakers, party leaders, out and about. they are still processing. help them process it. i mean, because we do want a two-party system, even you, i think so. so if they go to obstructionist, that may be the first instinct, but is that the right thing for them? mr. cantor: listen, the obstruction, you know, again, there's a much longer discussion about how that
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obstruction, how the minority party that i was part of camp -- 2007 to 2010, we face an an incoming president obama with a 70%-something approval rating, and we had to do the same thing, we had to pick ourselves back up and say, how are we going to work together, and there were plenty of tents on my part, john boehner's part when he was leader and i was republican whip, to say to this white house and the president, we want to work with you, after they invited us in. we tried. many of you remember the days, the stimulus, obamacare, dodd-frank, and the first shot was the stimulus bill. i remember vividly the president
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coming over to then-leader boehner and i to say, come to the white house, present us your ideas, we are putting together this bill. remember, this was shortly after the collapse of the markets in 2008. we want you to be part of it. and we did. we had session after session in the roosevelt room of the white house, and i remember being so anxious at the time, i even brought in a one-page white paper to the president. the president even said, you know, there's nothing crazy in here. we got a little juice out of that, thinking, ok. at the time, the discussion with republicans was, are we going to advocate for the elimination of the capital gains tax and all that, knowing full well you are dealing with a one-sided town here, and we didn't. but again, all that goodwill dissipated very quickly, and obviously we have our interpretation of it and they have theirs as to why. it just seemed we were left out of that bill. with that started the we are going to be against what you are doing if you are not bringing us
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in, which snowballed. and the overreach that occurred in my opinion, those two years in 2009 to 2010, allowed for the rebounding of the republican party in the house. i think that has lessens here for my party now. we don't want to go and commit an overreach as a party. the democrats, they owe it to their constituents and the country to try to be a part of things and at least try and work. i know president-elect trump has said he wants to do that. and see if we can make it work. my sense is the country has really had it with, you know, sort of blaming, two parties blaming each other and basically leaving so many people out. mr. ellis: let's talk about some of the specific policy areas. trade has been a bipartisan consensus area. sounds like the election sent a
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strong signal, a lot of people feel it's not working for them. i thought months ago that trump had been winning the argument on that and shifted ground. you, as someone in the business environment, now care very deeply about trade. how do you square those two things now? mr. cantor: spending a significant amount of time in asia, both in southeast asia, in china, hong kong, japan, there is a real priority that i see being placed on tpp prospects. much has been written in this country reflecting that notion, they see tpp more than just a trade sort of blueprint, they see it as a demonstration of american commitment to the region. and that is why most in the foreign policy arena think it is a really important thing.
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but then flip back to the voters that really came out this election and said, you know what, trade is not working for me, so i think, first of all, this lame-duck there's no question, there's no trade. and there's no tpp, in my opinion, going to happen. but with donald trump and his insistence we are going to go in and rework the trade agreements, i don't think there's many people who disagree that you can improve upon the existing agreement. i think it all depends on what you mean when you say "rework them." if you take a sledgehammer to the situation, i think it's really bad for our economy, and for america's role as an exporter, and the imports and what that will rebound to the american consumer. i do think there are ways to actually deliver on his promises, depending on who the ustr is and how he works with
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that individual to go about effecting things in a positive way. but sledgehammer, no. i think it is very damaging for us as a country. mr. ellis: it strikes me, that is really, barring a crisis, the first of the medic challenge for president trump, isn't it? these are an array of nations that didn't want to reopen negotiations, so you have to find a way to do that with a needle rather than a sledgehammer. are you up for that job? mr. cantor: no, i'm good. let's talk about taxes. tax reform has been on the table in the republican party. what are the parameters? repatriation? infrastructure? mr. cantor: i heard, walking in, one of the individuals of a prior panel questioned, are republicans going to pay for a tax cut? when i was there and still
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today, a few years, later, the rules are, we don't pay for tax cuts, sort of contrary to the philosophy we are about. but the infrastructure bill is something else. the infrastructure bill is something that will run into what i believe is an insistence by the fiscal hawks in my party that infrastructure be paid for and not just be borrowed, and that's where tax reform can come in, and that's where i think you have the marrying up of things that either both sides want, certainly the democrats and hillary clinton was out there saying she wanted to see an increase in infrastructure spending. donald trump wanted to see a big increase in infrastructure spending. so that will be the test as to how much of an appetite there is on the part of the fiscal hawks on the hill to go for that. and related to tax reform, in
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particular the international piece, when you get to that repatriation, most of you know, that's a very controversial subject, but i believe when you are talking upwards of $300 billion in terms of infrastructure, and that's -- who knows where the number will be, but that's really where the money is. i don't know where else you get it. and so i think that the prospects are pretty good for donald trump to drive the infrastructure package. kevin brady, paul ryan, others in the house, to design and put forward real tax reform. david: chuck schumer has already said he favors the idea of repatriating. generally, the accepted number is about $1 trillion overseas that could be brought back with a tax holiday or a lower rate. did you ever have any interaction with schumer and the
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democrats on that? mr. cantor: absolutely. there was a lot of discussion in a bipartisan way even two years ago when i left about that, about the marrying up of these two things. but it's not just a tax holiday. it is a putting in place an entire new regime, so you don't get nicked on the scoring. and if you are looking for tax enhancements, not necessarily revenue neutral, you need to go look at this one-time tax or fee on profits abroad in exchange for a reduced rate here at home for corporate america and the insertion of territoriality into the system instead of the worldwide tax system we have now. again, those two things in broad speech are very controversial. that will have to be worked out. again, when i go back to this statement, talking to the type of voters who came out this
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time, talking to them, what matters to them, this garble-ese i just went through is not really relevant, but it needs to happen in order to produce an infrastructure package that people around the country can understand and enjoy when they see improvements in their homes, areas. mr. ellis: you work with the bipartisan policy center on infrastructure. what is your view on what we need so we can drive up 95 and not be frustrated? where is that vision? how much money do we need? mr. cantor: the estimate is $1 trillion-plus. a lot of money. but interestingly, when i served on the executive council at bpc, we would go around the country to denver, i took them to richmond, hosted them there as to what virginia was doing with public-private partnerships.
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my sense is that there is liquidity out there in the private sector, and a lot of the institutional asset managers, ready to deploy capital to match long-term capital with long-term pension commitments. insurance companies, the same way. the capital keeps saying, first of all there is not a pipeline of projects, we used to call it shovel-ready, that exist across the country. and there's a lot of risk associated with that capital, particularly because of politics and permitting. so the work of the bpc executive council, and there is a report out there about some suggestions, heavily weighted to the states as to what you have to do to streamline things at the state level so you can see projects come forward and the process be more amenable to people willing to undertake risk.
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mr. ellis: so infrastructure, there is a lot of garble-ese to get to the new bridge, but let's talk about something that is very hot and emotional and you don't need a lot of jargon, which is immigration. now, you were a supporter of jeb bush, and you supported trump when he triumphed in the primary process. you tweaked him on twitter for softening his immigration stance in august. let's talk about the politics of that, and where you see a possible consensus. mr. cantor: well -- mr. ellis: long road, isn't it? mr. cantor: is certainly played a role in my primary loss. we were trying to do something to move the needle, and if any of you recall following it, as leader i wanted to try to address the kids, because i never believed that
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our country has the policy or law that allows us to hold kids liable for illegal acts of their parents. and just from a pure legal standpoint, if you don't even want to get to the human aspect, let's see if we can move that way. then again, that was too up the middle because both sides got upset because it was standalone, not comprehensive, and it was considered amnesty from my side in many instances. so, look, i think short of the first initial request for authorization to build that wall, and the money, you know, i guess, there's money needed until mexico sends its check, so we will see. but short of that kind of legislative action, most of the immigration policy will be dealt with at the administration level. i do think it will be executive order.
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and echoing the last panel, when they said, you know, one party doesn't like executive orders when the other does it. i do think that the immigration piece will probably remain in that realm. other than, again, the funding and appropriations necessary at the border for building that wall. david: so you -- so what does that mean, actually? what does president trump sign? where is he going with that? mr. cantor: you know, we will have to see. there were things said in the campaign in terms of refugees, vetting and other things, that you know, really, from the initial position that donald trump staked out on immigration, it sort of gravitated back toward the center over time. and if you think about the tools, the art of persuasion, negotiation, maybe that's what that was.
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when he said, look, trust me, i'm going to be tough on this, and i have outpaced anybody on this by taking this position, and then we will get somewhere that makes sense over time. who knows? again, that's a question i know all of us are asking, because there has not been a lot of definition around the kind of policies that will be pursued under a trump presidency. mr. ellis: to quote mario cuomo, you govern in poetry, in this case maybe limericks, and you govern in prose. where are the softenings? talk about the supreme court, isn't that a potential hazard area for overreach? he has two factions here, which is we have to have a solidly conservative justice, but then it turns into an ugly fight. he has a real crossroads this year.
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how does he do that? mr. cantor: to his credit, he has been transparent about the kinds of people that he is thinking about and will offer up as justices for the supreme court. i think it's pretty straightforward on his part. yes, there will be controversy. there's always controversy. do the democrats want to filibuster that in the senate? if so, how long will that last? if they try and leverage that for something else, how does president trump react to that, and in the end will that nuclear option in place for other a have to bes applied to the confirmation of supreme court justices? rest assured, that will be worked out, and we will have a full-court in good order after the new administration and congress are sworn in. mr. ellis: so you are putting that high, if not the first
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order of business, right up high? let's talk a little about the house freedom caucus and your friends there. are they neutralized because of tuesday? mr. cantor: i think a lot of the -- a lot of the tension, and i think there probably was not just two but probably three factions, if you will, or broad movements within the party. i think all that has pretty much gone away now. winning has its way of curing a lot of that, and the former colleagues i have spoken with since the other night have said, we are going to get things done. i believe, not being close to it anymore, but i do believe they will do that, and given the opportunity with a president-elect who does not have a lot of experience in this town, certainly a vice president-elect, who i served with 12 years, many on the hill
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served with him and know mike pence well, he understands the process, so there's a potential for good partnership, because of that, you know, coming in of an outsider together with all the insiders here to get something done. mr. ellis: i have many questions, but i want to invite people. we have two microphones. if you make your way there, we will switch over to you and let you get a question or two in. if anybody's interested, go to the mic and i will point you out. let me just, as people are going to the mics, i was thinking what can i ask you now that i couldn't have asked you two years ago? i got a bunch of questions. let's start with this one. who are your favorite democrats to work with? and who would mike pence be looking for to sort of work more in a bipartisan way?
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mr. cantor: there plenty of individuals i can name that i worked with on foreign policy issues, especially as it came to middle east and israel. there are a number of democrats that would work on those things. there were other democrats who worked with me on business issues, the jobs act, if you remember. even infrastructure. so, again, a number of people. but as we know and there's so many people in the house, there's a leadership structure in place so that you can help leverage any conversation that you have to committees and the rest. so certainly committee chairmen and on the democratic side, chuck schumer is the one with the leverage, i assume, when he becomes minority leader. he's the one with whatever leverage there is because has the ability to stand in the way to stop there being 60 votes on things that are not subject to
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reconciliation. i assume this white house, incoming white house, will be very focused on making sure that he's kept in very close contact and shares with him the intention. chuck schumer is somebody who i met with regularly. i know paul did when he was budget chair and ways and means chair on immigration issues and others. i suspect that's the line of communication you should keep an eye on. mr. ellis: seems like pence will be the chief legislative liaison. mr. cantor: makes sense. mr. ellis: i see somebody with a question. we'll go to my left and then we'll go to my right. sorry, i didn't see you. >> donald trump broke many of the unspoken rules in the campaign around things he said and things that are not considered ok to say campaigning.
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and peter thiel says listen to what means. as you said this is the persuasion of politics. he's also indicated that he would break many of the rules of separating his own personal interests from the institution of the office. for instance, not putting his investments in a blind trust. curious if you think the republican leadership will act to try to influence him on that to maintain some of the codes that have been considered sacrosanct for the democracy. mr. cantor: i have no idea what everybody's thinking is. my own opinion is he needs to do that. he needs to go in and be as transparent as possible. that is the essence of who we're as a country. as i travel the world and i see these other governments, whether it is in brazil, in china, europe, or otherwise, the middle east, they look to us and know that things work here. and i think so much of that rests on you know what the rules are. people play by the rules.
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you have confidence in the judiciary. and the transparency of that institution, and certainly the transparency of our lawmaking process to guard against anything even having the perception of being untoward. i believe this election showed us clinton foundation and the rest and all that sort of hung around that controversy did have in it this notion that things were too opaque. so my counsel would be, and not asking me, my counsel would be certainly you have to be transparent. must put it and separate it out from your official duties. mr. ellis: over here. >> thank you very much for your comments and your insight this morning. we talked a lot about white middle class voter being
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instrumental in trump's victory from the rural areas. and your comments now you said those voters have definitely been accepted into the republican party. so one of the other things that we saw in trump's rallies from that group of voters were comments that were negative towards people of other races, people from other countries, people from the lgbt community. i would like to know how those beliefs and views and values fit in to the republican party moving forward? mr. cantor: which beliefs and values? >> views that could be considered very racist, negative comments about people from -- mexico, for example. those kind of negative comments that we really saw at the trump rallies and those people coming out at the rallies. mr. cantor: there's no room in the republican party for any of that. i think that you have seen president-elect trump, his campaign denounce a lot of that. didn't always get the coverage i think it should have.
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perhaps early on it wasn't quick enough in coming. but i do think you saw leaders on the hill, paul ryan, mitch mcconnell, and others denounce those type of statements, sentiments as soon as they arose. my position is absolutely no tolerance for any kind of racism, any kind of nationalism, any kind of any semitism of which i certainly have some unfortunately some experience. again, just zero tolerance on that. it should come from leaders when it occurs. mr. ellis: we've got just enough time for two questions. start here and the lady in red. >> hi, thanks again for coming. great to see you. i'm just wondering what you think will happen now with obamacare. just a small question. mr. cantor: how long do we have? no question -- i think it's
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already been discussed and it was probably in the works, we were in the works with it if romney had won, is reconciliation packages in this fiscal year geared towards obamacare repeal and replace. i think the latter piece is really important and very difficult. and then you will have the next fiscal year a reconciliation package geared towards tax reform. we talked about the need for that in terms of the infrastructure funding. there is clearly huge problems -- i get to see it now from the business side. companies that lois works with and whether it's in the insurance arena, the medical provider arena, hospitals, this is a very challenging environment that they are operating in, and especially if you look at the exchanges and look at individuals who are receiving these premium hikes.
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which has ripple effect in the private market insurance markets and the rest. so there's a real need to fix something. even if hillary clinton were elected, she would have had to go to the congress to fix something. these things are spiraling out of control and downward. there's a great opportunity i think out there for the republicans to step up and finally coalesce around an obamacare replace. and the devil's in the details. when i was on the hill worked a lot with many of the physicians as well as committee chairs to try and gain consensus. and i think they'll get there. i do. but it's, to me, probably going to be for them a priority and should be. mr. ellis: we're running out of time. i keep my promise to the lady over there. >> thank you, peggy, congressional correspondent for the "hispanic outlook."

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