tv Speaker Paul Ryan Discusses the Congressional Agenda CSPAN January 28, 2017 1:50am-2:32am EST
other. >> go to book tv.org for the complete weekend schedule. >> after a three-day retreat with congressional republicans philadelphia, changes to tax policy were discussed. this is 40 minutes. [applause] good afternoon, packed house. thank you for coming. i am here with anna palmer. thank you to all of you in the room and all of you joining in livestream land for our first playbook interview event with speaker paul ryan. we are kicking off this latest
series with a timely conversation to provide insight into the new washington and what to expect and what you need to know as we kick off the trump administration. these events are a life extension of the playbook interview, which we do in the playbook often, where we host conversations that we run in playbook for you to read. we are looking forward to hosting many conversations throughout the year. before we get started with the program, i want to extend a special thank you to our partners uber for making this possible. here to say the keywords, head of federal affairs at uber. thank you for joining us. [applause] thanks so much. thanks for having me. i lead government relations for uber in washington. over the last week or so, there has been a parlor game in d.c. oncomparing the 2009
inauguration to this inauguration. i will not leave you in suspense. there were more uber writes this time. we did not exist. not until 2010. in the first five and a half years of our existence, we clocked about a billion rights. we clocked our second billion right after 2016. today, there are about 700,000 americans driving on the uber platform. they earned $9 billion last year and 5000 of those drivers are from the great state of wisconsin, from which hails our 64th speaker of the house, paul ryan. but as he tells me, there is only one uber driver in janesville. i been given a task. thank you for having us. there is a lot to disagree about in washington right now, but one thing we can agree on is it is a humdinger of a time to be here. we are thrilled to help with this conversation and thank you.
[applause] >> thanks for making this conversation possible. without further and you, the speaker of the house, paul ryan. thanks for joining us. [applause] also chief fashion critic. we get started, we want to remind everyone to tweet your questions. jake has our handy device and we will track them here on stage. from philadelphia last night where republicans held their legislative retreat. you are fresh off of -- >> just came back. >> you had the president, the vice president, peyton manning -- go packers. .e thought we would be busy
what is the banner headline out of the retreat? we are going to be big and bold and go get it done. you have an agenda. we asked the country for permission to solve big problems, we ran on a coparent and specific agenda and now we have been given an opportunity and trust from the country to solve those problems and that is what we are about. conversationibrant about how to fix these problems. we have come out of this with unity among house and senate republicans in the white house. not just a commitment to work together, but demonstrating we are working together hand in glove to make sure we get this right. anna: we you have a pretty good story to tell? holes show the message is resonating around the country. you are working well together. but then there are things like steve manning, one of the top aides to president trump and he said "the media should be
embarrassed and humiliated and keep its mouth shut and listen for a while." mr. ryan: when did he say that, by the way? anna: the new york times. through a media outlet, actually. they don't understand this country, they still don't understand why donald trump is the president of the united states to us is a guy who represents the american government. do you think that is appropriate? getryan: i'm not going to into that stuff. i do believe as a conservative, generally speaking, the media has overtime had a bias against conservatism. but that's just what we are used to dealing with. i am used to it. all i care about our results and getting things done. i won't comment on these things. i don't care about distractions.
we want to get things done. in thisbig problems country, but they are solvable problems and we think we have good solutions and we have to perform. the country needs it, congress has not worked like it should. have a broken government, we have an opportunity to fix it. i am excited about that and i'm not interested in getting pulled off into distractions which will take us off our goal of solving problems for people. your jobs that make harder? it seems distractions come up with crack not if i don't let it. jake: one interesting element of the trump printed t -- presidency is he has you pegged. he has been in crowds of people, saying, where his paul ryan? he is out running legislation. he has you typecast. what is something you have learned since trump took office
that you didn't know about him during the election? i didn't really know him. i have just recently gotten to know him. i think i met him once for 30 seconds in 2012. shook his hand briefly after he got the nomination for maybe an hour during the campaign. that was it. we got to know each other quite well the last few months. man, a veryere smart, capable guy. he has a different style, we all know that. jake: -- speaker ryan: he will be unconventional, but what i have enjoyed the past few weeks is he takes this seriously. i think he realizes the awesome responsibility. i think he understands how big a deal it is and what i love about it is that he is convinced he can be transformative, and he wants to deliver. the guy never stops working. he is endless.
jake: you guys talk on the phone all the time. speaker ryan: he is endless energy. it is always about getting things done. it is always about this plan, that plan, this policy proposal. his mind is always fixed on fixing problems, delivering on his promises and i do really believe that he appreciates the awesome responsibility and can tell he is so focused on getting big results. i find it endearing, and i find it encouraging. the awesomelk about responsibility, some people have brought up that maybe he doesn't understand the awesome responsibility if after the election he is calling up the national parks service and complaining about this. speaker ryan: he is going to be an unconventional president. he has opinions on these things and makes that clear. but his energy and enthusiasm for getting big things done -- what i have always disliked are
people who are timid, who believe in something that don't follow through and are timid. he is not back. he is notafraid -- back. he's not afraid of getting things done. the fact that we laid out a 200 day plan. mitch, kevin and donald -- the president and mike pence and i basically laid out this plan. agenda for ally the things we want to accomplish in 2017. it is ambitious because we think problems toave big solve. the fact we are so court made it in getting this going is very exciting. anna: you talked about mike pence and his role, former house member, you know him well. how integral will he be -- is he more in touch with you guys than trump? will he be the broker between things that actually get done? speaker ryan: i have spent more time with these two and i have put the last two in the last
month than i had in the last eight years. i find them extremely engaged. mike is going to be a very strong vice president. joe was a strong vice president too, so was dick cheney. but mike will be in that echo on -- echelon. he is someone who understands the system. he understands how the senate and house work, personal relationships. he was a government. we are talking about how to do medicaid reform with obamacare, he brings a lot of expertise to that. profitablea hugely vice president. he got an office in the capital. a lot of people didn't. i'll ask you later who you took away from. let's talk about this agenda. you brought at,
presentation to the president of the white house and showed him what you want to do. and you presented it to the house republican congress and senate. what does that look like the next 200 days? speaker ryan: we have deadlines that matter. april 28, the expiration of the current cr, that dictates something has to be done. we have to finish appropriations there. i put in this plan, the dates of things we need to do and when we need to do them. budgets, two budgets, two reconciliations in a fiscal year. that has never been done before. that will consume a lot of time. then we have to respect the fact that the senate -- not that they take a long time to pass the bill, but they have more to do with all the confirmations. onupreme court pick thursday, i believe. i don't know who it is. anna: have you given recommendations? speaker ryan: we like the list he has quite a bit.
my understanding is that is the list you will select from. select from. we have built in a recognition of the supreme court, other judges on lower courts, cabinets, sub cabinets, two budgets, fiscal year deadlines. we assume there will be a debt limit in the summer. -- ortell you what your's 200 days are going to look like. there is tax reform -- we see that coming out of the second budget. anna: two budgets that haven't been done before. talk real with us about, what would you be ok with anything, but slips into 2018 question mark -- 2018? speaker ryan: the items can slip into 2018, that's something that needs to be taking care of. we have to repair obamacare and replace it with a better law, that has to be done. same with tax reform. there is also a deadline
involved with the budget. that has to get done. repairbudget, we want to the defense sequester. that has to get done. those have deadlines, they cannot slip. have things that don't such time sensitivity can slip, but we really hope to get it all done in 2017. we met -- mapped out a january through august timeline. there are a lot of judges. would really say that a fiscal economic issues are the pressing ones. we expect a supplemental coming up from the white house on the border. that will be attended to very quickly and early on. i think you are going to see border security beginning to rebuild our military, health care, tax reform with the budget cannot the things they
slip because of jake: the way the deadlines work. let's dig into the details. obamacare. you talked to many more members than we do, but from our conversations with numbers on capitol hill, there is a lot of -- you have been beating the drum on obamacare for a long bunch,d repealing it a now you have the keys to the car. i think people are beginning to feel like, oh my god -- soberingit is an moment. we have a responsibility to get it right. we keep telling our members is, we have to move quickly but not at the expense of getting it right. we have to move weekly only because we are in the midst of a collapse. if you look at the system -- what i think people need to do is put this in perspective. doing the numbers off the top of my head, gucci percent of the country are on the exchanges. those are collapsing. ,f those exchanges collapse 11.5 million people have nowhere to go.
that has to be dealt with quickly. then obamacare did much damage to the rest of the health-care marketplace, let like the employer market and the rest of the individual market. -- we seet to step in this as a rescue operation. inbring relief immediately 2017 before a collapse occurs, pullouts ande more double-digit increases. we anticipate that if we didn't do anything, the five states that only have one plan and the third of counties that only have one plan, many would see no plans. if we do nothing this year. we have to move in haste, but want to get it right. that is why we are talking about refundable tax credits and making sure all those pieces superiort as a far replacement of this collapsing system. jake: could you guarantee this will be done in 2017? speaker ryan: that's the point, it has to get done in 2017. people,i don't confuse
the legislating has to get done in 2017. putting the policy in place will take time. jake: how long? speaker ryan: that is really an hhs question and they haven't concerned -- confirmed the secretariat. the secretary yet. i think we can stabilize the non-subsidy market pretty quickly. but how long does it take to swap out a collapsing system for a better one, it is really in market question and not one we know the answer to right now. but if we delay even more, there will be a big collapse. that is why we want to have the legislating done so policy can be done as quickly as possible. anna: i get the deadline of how you want to move forward, but there is a lot of nervousness among republicans. yesterday, kevin mccarthy said he wants to repair obamacare.
put it in context for us because behind the scenes -- >> we want to repair the health care system. anna: he said repair obamacare but. speaker ryan: he said repair, which raised a lot of eyebrows. -- but, session where people are being led to believe just because of rhetoric that we are going to have a vote on tuesday and on wednesday, no one will have health insurance. that is not the way it works. that isn't going to happen. we are going to pass legislation to replace obamacare with a far better system, which will repair our health-care care system and we believe we have to act quickly because we have a collapse that is underway right now. yes, it is nerve-racking because happening nowis is nerve-racking. obamacare has become a spectacular failure. it will not work. if we didn't win the presidency,
the election, hillary clinton and shook schumer -- chuck schumer would be trying to pass new legislation to fix the mess in front of them. they would probably go to single-payer, we are trying to fix it with something better. the good news on this is, if we get this right, and i believe we will, with real choice, real competition, that brings down prices. that brings down prices and fixes a lot of problems. paycheck problems, workplace problems, if fixes the 40 hour work week, if fixes fiscal problems because at the root cause of help inflation, you are reducing the debt in the out years. getting this right fixes a lot of problems we have in our country, families, communities and fiscal balance sheets. that is why there is so much at stake. ,ake: tom mcclintock yesterday , severalst six hours
news outlets got a leaked recording of -- we now know what happened. said, we had better be sure we are prepared to live with the market we retreat -- we create. republicans will own it lock, stock and barrel. which is an interesting point. democrats took a long time and got into the minority. how do you ensure you are not talking about this for months and months and all of a sudden, you are at an election and you have a big political issue on your hands? speaker ryan: we have a responsibility to work for the people who put us in office. the people of wisconsin did not ask me to come to d.c. to point fingers and watch something blowup, people get hurt and say the democrats did it. we have a moral obligation to fix this problem. period. that is the old we take. to defend the constitution, to fight for the people we
represent and this is a fiasco that needs to be fixed. good news is, we had a plan we ran on 2016. that is the plane we are working on right now as we implement on the solutions. that is why i keep seeing concurrently, everyone has different language, we plan on moving these things together. so it is not just repeal and down the road we get to replace. it is repeal and replace at the same time. anna: talking about different language, there has been divided among republicans, including trump about how they talk about health care and law and, let's ensure everyone. you said you want universal access. the question everyone wants to know is, trump says he will cover everyone. you cover everyone? access ryan: universal is our goal. we don't think the government should tell you what you have to do with your life like your health care. what plan you have to buy. all, i don't think its constitutional.
believe in giving everyone the ability and resources to buy affordable health care coverage, including people with pre-existing conditions. if you choose not to do that, we will not have the government make you do something. we see it differently and want to make sure everyone has the choice they need and want and the resources to make a good choice to buy affordable coverage. that is why we are making sure to get all of this right. jake: let's move onto another thing you say you are going to do this year. you can sense the set -- skepticism. tax reform. you said in your speech on wednesday, tax reform means a broader base, lower rates and upset lobbyists. this needs to be an open meeting, basically. speaker ryan: that is right. jake: tell us what to expect. this will impact everyone across the country, people want to know is their mortgage deduction companies, part -- want to know what the landscape
is. speaker ryan: any tax reform plan worth its weight is going to have a broader base. because lobbyists, special interest, i have watched this system. they put in specific provisions that benefit in euro group of interests. what that means is you have to raise taxes and everyone else more to make up for that. have a tax code that basically says to all these people in america, send your money to washington and if you engage in -- in behavior we approve of, we will let you keep some of it. that is killing our economy, strangling growth, putting us in the back of the pack internationally. we have to fix this and yes, the people who lose in narrow interests, will fight back. but it is at the expense of the general welfare that we have these things. that is why i keep telling our members that you have to put the
chinstrap on and do this for the people we represent. pair you said you want to tax reform with infrastructure. is that still the plan? speaker ryan: that is what we were working on before. our thinking was, how do we pay for infrastructure in that spring budget? a separatee infrastructure bill that would not be in the tax reform bill. that is something we worked on before when we were trying to do a highway bill with chuck schumer and it went a different route. you still want to talk about tax reform, don't you? jake: yeah, let's talk about that. yesterday -- what we are seeing in washington these days must be difficult for you because yesterday started with donald trump saying at your retreat, seeming to back border adjustment, which means the government taxes imports instead of exports.
quite simply, how it breaks up. within several hours, his press secretary reversed that and said, well that is just one way. his speechn: actually said that. i can't remember the exact words. we are working off a blueprint we wrote last year. we are perfecting it now in the house. this is among the options they are looking at. we are having lots of conversations with friends in the senate and the white house on tax reform. just to clear up what is a border tax or border accessibility. remember one thing, we have the worst tax code in the industrialized world with respect to businesses and job growth. incentivizesth businesses to go overseas, to make things overseas or become foreign companies because of how bad our tax code is. 116 countries now, because they have consumption-based tax border and just their
taxes. they don't tax exports. if they are going to make something in their country, i am making this coffee cup in wisconsin, i won't tax it. all our other competitors do this. we don't. we do the opposite. when we make something in america and send it overseas, we taxes here and goes into their country and they tax it again. when they make something, let's say a coffee cup competing with a coffee mug. we tax the cup here and goes into another country, say japan, , they make a mug, they send it to america, under untax it. we are backwards. this is a trade policy, its tax policy. because we have a big trade deficit -- i know you want me to shut up. jake: no.
speaker ryan: what it ends up doing is it gives us a trillion dollars, give or take to lower our tax rate. basically, countries we have trade deficits with, mexico, china, they will help finance ourtax reform to lower taxes and we get our tax system on par with the rest of the world so we are not shooting ourselves in the foot. it is a tax on making things in america that we were are removing. jake: let's be honest here. i couldn't keep track, it was like the ball under the cup thing. donald trump tried to position this as him going after mexico. that's not true. no, it is an elegant solution to -- if you want to get money coming in from mexico to pay for anything, like a wall. because we have a trade deficit, with a border tax, as part of tax reform, you will get revenues coming in from mexico.
revenues coming from every country we have a trade deficit because imports exceed exports. revenues come into this country from that and that goes to our tax plan. that is what he is making the point of. jake: everyone raises prices? speaker ryan: i could go into an , ihange rate argument but think currencies adjust. we have always seen this, over and again. our importers who sell into other countries -- let's take walmart. all of the world, they are not losing because they are in other border adjustable countries. we are putting u.s. on par with the rest of the world. when we do this, in means there is no reason to leave this as ary and manufacturer -- manufacturer. no reason to be taken over by a foreign company, no reason to outsource your manufacturing and it gets us a better tax code
where ours will be better than the rest of the world. i will wrap this up. in 1986, we started tax reform and it triggered great economic growth in this country, this world. the rest of the world reformed their tax codes. codee have the worst tax and we believe this leapfrogs the rest of the world and puts us at the front of the pack. a superior tax system will put us on faster higher productivity and more jobs. to askne thing i wanted you about -- you bring up walmart and individual companies will have talked to business about donald trump and how he is picking winners and losers, certainly the conservative that has not been the policy of going after individual companies and what jobs they are doing. how do you respond to that? are you concerned -- have you been hearing from companies? i am hearing every day about
people who are concerned about the fact that your stock prices, your lockheed martin down 5%. speaker ryan: i am focused on delivering results. the way i see it and most republicans see it, our job right now is to maximize conditions for economic growth. possibleica the best place to work, save and invest and grow a company. more economic activity, that is more effective than doing one offs and helping individuals. feels strongly about making a difference where and whenever he can. he has energy and is doing it. our job as legislators is to make sure we pass an agenda that delivers the results people sent us here to achieve. jake: let's talk about this wall for a second. you and republicans going back to 2009, 2010 have insisted on offsetting all sorts of spending. we don't know if mexico is going to pay, we don't know what that
is going to look like. how are you comfortable spending $14 billion in unpaid for spending, at least without some sort of mechanism to ensure it gets offset? speaker ryan: first of all we , see this as a national security priority, crisis proportions with respect to opioids, drugs, this poor border. this is a national security issue. we anticipate a supplemental coming from the administration on defense and the border. jake: when do you expect that? speaker ryan: well mulvaney has , to get in office and start working on office. i am hoping sooner than later. i am hoping within the first quarter we can get this done. but again it is getting them up , and running so this is supplemental. this is something we want to get on right away. we do believe this is urgent. we do believe this is one of the most promises the president made important running process office.
it is a promise he will keep, and we will help him keep it. anna: how are you sure mexico will pay? speaker ryan: that is what yesterday was all about. there are a medley of options on getting revenue from another country to offset things like this. jake: should mexico pay? speaker ryan: that is not the point. jake: it kind of is. why should mexico pay for it? [laughter] [speaking simultaneously] jake: but should mexico pay for it? why should mexico pay for a wall that we want, that they don't? speaker ryan: look, i am not -- no offense, but i don't want to get in the wedges. i won't take bait and drive , i will try and get things done, and i do believe we should have this. i voted for this in 2006 i think. we all did. it never got done. this is why we are upset. we say things that don't get done. this congress is about getting things done, restoring the trust with the country.
i'm not going to get into a quibbling about whether they should or should not pay for it. we said we would do it, now we have to deliver. anna: one of the things there has been bipartisan support on is criminal justice reform. republicans and democrats try to make that happened last year. do you think that is something you could get done in 2017? speaker ryan: yes, it is my goal. , theke with bob goodlatte chairman, a number of democrats, he had 11 bills he got out of the committee. they put a load out. those bills are pretty much ready to go. they will have to remark up and send them through the floor again. jeff sessions was helpful on this. i think we have got to get -- a good partner at the justice department for this. i think cory booker is the lead guy in the senate, this is something i think is a long time in coming, something we should do, that is one of the things i want to get done in 2017.
jake: moving into a different realm does the renewed torture , talk alarm you? this isn't a wedge. speaker ryan: donald trump says things like this. the president says things like this. i think you -- the president says things like this, and i think you and i and everyone has got to get used to that. jake: but these are like -- speaker ryan: like i said yesterday, we aren't going to change the log -- law on torture. it is illegal and will remain being illegal. jake: another issue that popped up today, john mccain said, if the president lifts sanctions on russia, he will make sure the congress codifies those things -- sanctions into law. speaker ryan: i think sanctions are overdue. obama was late putting them in place. i think they should stay. jake: i am trying to be equitable. go ahead. anna: i want to ask you -- speaker ryan: we can talk about border tax again, if you want.
[laughter] anna: not speaking about russia, but i do want to ask you about foreign policy stuff. your colleague, a democrat from hawaii, she went to syria and met with assad. speaker ryan: yeah, i saw that. anna: is that right? speaker ryan: i would not advise it at all. it was not a sanctioned trip. i did not know about it until after it happened. anna: normally you are informed. speaker ryan: yes, normally we are informed. and if it is a coda, we have to sign off on it. if it is an approved trip, you have to get approval you and for foundation trips, so that was not an official trip or a sanctioned trip. bashar al-assad is a butcher. the man is committing genocide against his own people. he should go. period. anna: should there be some kind of retribution against -- speaker ryan: i don't know about that. i am going to reserve judgment on those things. jake: is she a friend of yours?
speaker ryan: she is a friend of mine. but still just because she is a , friend -- jake: i know. i think we can take one question out of the audience. this is a dangerous game. there are 500 people, but we will have two questions. yes, sir. anna: she will come get a microphone for you. if you could just identify yourself. >> my name is kami bert. i am from pakistan. my question is about our president signing so many executive orders. i am sure you remember when newt gingrich became speaker, he didn't want to see anything that was not relevant with his agenda, but people believed newt gingrich, because he is a brilliant man. people don't believe that our current president -- he is a kind of joke.
he is just signing these things. what would you say that would make people to believe that trump means business? he is not just signing everything? jake: thank you. speaker ryan: yes, newt gingrich is a brainy man. [laughter] and he will let you know it. he is on doing a lot of damage -- undoing a lot of damage that has been done by the last administration. we believe president obama exceeded his powers in many directions and put in place bad policies. what is happening here is, he is undoing. remember, last year he famously said i have got a phone and a , pen. that works both ways. now it is the other way. this president is on doing -- undoing harmful, damaging regulations and executive orders done by the last administration. the purpose of doing these things is to restore law and order it is to make sure we can , enforce our borders we know , that we have people trying to infiltrate the refugee population among isis. that is a real problem. we have to deal with that.
we have got a real regulatory roadblock on business and job creation. so he is cleaning up a lot about that. this is about jobs and national security. the phone and the pen is being used to put it back in the proper place. jake: we're about to -- anna: i want to ask you a follow-up on that. in terms of talking to business groups, they say it's not good to have people go either way on the sick ticket orders. obama went to far, now things swing. do you think this is a moment for serious regulatory reform? speaker ryan: sure that is part , of the 200 day plan, fixing the administrative procedures act, the president agrees with this act, one of our smarter legal guys is a congressman from texas, u.s. attorney, has a bill we are moving to change chevron, which is actually giving agencies so much power. we are trying to reclaim that power back into article one. so that truly, he is asking
let's get rid of all of the , excessive rulemaking, abuse of the executive orders. that is what president trump is doing now. then we want to follow that up with a resuscitation of the article one powers, so your elected representatives as the constitution calls for are the ones writing the law, not unelected bureaucrats. that is the next wave of reforms that we anticipate bringing to after we are done with this batch. legislatively, it means congressional reviews. we start the we have got a first one wednesday. number in the queues. that is also a calendar issue. there are only so many days you can do these. we are going to do our side of that, which is congress rescinding regulations while the president rescinds what he can. and we go back to a regulatory reform platform to restore article one platforms. and bring more accountability to the u.s. government. jake: you have a lot of stuff to do and not a lot of time. speaker ryan: that is why i talk fast. jake: you are going to the out
how for dinner. the president may or may not be, we don't know. what are those events -- you like these events? speaker ryan: only when i do. my family is here. we are going because of the retreat. it is actually a funny dinner. it is just a big comedy thing. but i don't go to any of these other dinners. jake: your love for janesville is well-documented. anna: all right, well speaker ryan, we are out of time. we appreciate you taking the time in joining us for what has been a very busy week. a special thank you to uber for making this possible, and all of you in the audience and livestream, please follow politico live online and on social media for updates on future playbook events. have a great evening. speaker ryan: thank you. [applause]
announcer: on newsmakers this weekend, we hear more about the legislative agenda with bill cassidy of louisiana. he talks about the plan he and susan collins have introduced. watch the interview sunday at 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> let me tell you something. i have done everything i can to protect my country. i am not afraid of you and am not afraid of president bush and i'm not afraid of anybody. if i have to give in order to
protect my country, i will. he does that kind of mussolini thing with his arm and said, but i did not give that order, and we said, wait, just call him down. former senior cia analyst john nixon talks about his book, debriefing the president. >> saddam was a realist in the use of power and the way political power is exercised in the political power game, and i think he saw that when you are playing it at his level, the presidency, the top level in the country, when you win, you win big, but when you lose, you also lose big. >> sunday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span's q&a. hewitting us now is hugh