tv Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi Says Sessions Recusal Shows Something is... CSPAN March 5, 2017 2:25pm-3:30pm EST
of $5,000. join us at it about a.m. eastern on march 8 for the announcement. this year he asked middle and high school students to reduce documentaries telling us what is the most urgent issue for our new president and congress to address in 2017. we received over 2900 entries, from 46 states, plus the district of columbia, england, germany, singapore and taiwan. students competed for a chance to win $100,000 in cash prizes in first, second and third place categories. you can log onto our website 30 minutes before the big announcement to view all 150 winning documentaries at studentcam.org. what's the enactment of our 2017 grand prize winner wednesday, march 8 at 8:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. friday, house minority leader nancy pelosi was interviewed by politico about
the house democratic agenda. attorney general sessions, and the investigation into russian involvement in the 2016 elections. this is one hour. >> ladies and gentlemen, please welcome anna palmer and jake sherman. [applause] anna: good morning. happy friday. i am anna palmer. this is my co-author jake sherman. thank you for coming out this morning. we are very excited that house democratic leader nancy pelosi joining us this morning. it could not be a better time to sit down with the california democrat, a couple days after trump's joint session, and after attorney general jeff sessions just recused himself from
investigating on the russia interference in elections. issuese will talk about leading to the first 100 days. before we get started with the program, i would like to extend a special thank you to our partners at the peterson foundation. also next week a sneak preview that we are announcing. we will have mitch mcconnell in an event next week. the peter g. peterson foundation is taking that conversation possible. here to say a few words is the president and ceo of the peterson foundation. mr. peterson, thank you so much for joining us. [applause] >> thank you. [inaudible] we are a nonpartisan organization. [inaudible]
let me start with a brief context of our fiscal situation. 2007 we had a deficit of $261 billion. it affects the budget in two ways. we had a significant budget -- revenue shortfall. revenue fell considerably. you actually also have a spending increase due to employment insurance, and other public assistance. the deficit exploded to a high of $1.4 trillion in 2009. in 2016, we had a return to a more normal economy. revenues rebounded significantly. spending was relatively flat. some decreases in discretionary spending was offset by increases in entitlements and interest.
the debt was at $587 billion. we are still at a significant level of the deficit. unfortunately the future is not nearly as right. over the next 10 years this is path. in 2023, we will be back to deficits that exceed $1 trillion this is an unwelcome trend. what are foundation is focused on is the long-term, which is more bleak. if you look at a long-term, the best way to look at that is as a share of the economy. 60% is considered a reasonable level by many economists. the european union requires all members have to be below that level to join. here is where we are today at 77%. this is the highest level since world war ii. this is a long-term path we are on. 141% by 2046. that would be the highest in history by far and unsustainable and dangerous path for us to be on. what is causing this are 3 basic
drivers. what is demographics. we have about 76 million baby boomers beginning to retire. a big population coming through the retirement system. increasing longevity so that , group is living longer. that means more years in retirement. lastly, our inefficient health care system. seniors consume a great deal of health care. the system is highly inefficient. how does this affect the economy? it starts by affecting the budget. these are the top 7 budget categories in 2016. i believe the label offer a minute. by 2028 that budget item becomes the third-largest. by 2046 it becomes the second largest. by 2050 becomes the single largest item in the budget. anyone want to guess what that is? interest. that is on pace to become our single greatest priority in the budget ahead of all of these important programs. another thing it does is called crowding out.
discretionary spending is where a lot of these advancements are in the economy. in 1970, most of the budget was discretionary. 61%. this year it will be down to 30%, and by 10 years from now it is down to 20%. the growth of these mandatory spending programs and interest on the debt compounding is squeezing discretionary spending. the other fact is it takes away capital from private investments. it reduces physical flexibility. if we have another crisis, we are less able to handle it. it also risks the safetynet. without a sustainable budget, the safetynet and those who depend on it are put in without a sustainable budget, the safetynet and those who depend on it are put in jeopardy. some good news, there are a lot of solutions. our foundation is nonpartisan.
we did something called the solutions initiative. tell us what you would like to do the budget, and we will score. here is the path we are on. this is the american enterprise institute, bipartisan policy center, center for american progress, and the economic policy institute. they all successfully stabilized the debt. they did a lot of different things. this proves there are many ways to solve this problem. i wanted to touch base on the current reforms under consideration and put them into context for you. health care and the aca are front and center. health care is a key fiscal issue. 70% of our future spending growth is in the health care. 80% of our gdp has been on health care. spending has tripled over the
last 20 years so it's on a significant growth path which has effects on our competitiveness wages, etc., in terms of the aca that generates considerable revenues. it generates considerable revenues over the next 10 years the projection is to generate 1.2 trillion in revenue. significant medicare savings built-in of about $800 billion in the subsidies as the medicaid expansion cost about $1.6 trillion. we will see how this comes up but there's significant physical components that need to be dealt
with. secondly, corporate tax reform, to put that in some context, over the next 10 years the total federal revenue base is about $43 trillion. corporate taxes, income taxes is only about 10% so only dealing with about $4 trillion over the next 10 years. a lot of discussion about potential reforms, preliminary as you know but lowering rates, has been a significant goal of republicans. that would cost about $2 trillion over 10 years according to some of the proposals. the border adjustment tax would raise $1 trillion and the house
republicans plan calls for revenue neutrality. we will need about $1 trillion more through growth or other parts of tax cuts. discretionary spending is a big part of the discussion. keep in mind as i said earlier, discretionary is only about 30% of the budget. we are going with a relatively small piece compared to the rest. it is also not a fundamental driver. discretionary spending, here's the long-term cap for that. it's not a fundamental driver but obviously we can make changes to it as we see fit. it's much lower than it has been and we are already at a historically low level. that's not where you need to go to solve the problem. it's not just a few key takeaways, we already have a historically high level of debt that is growing at an unsustainable level. that has a huge effect on our economy, affecting incomes, growth, etc. many solutions that exist, any way to solve this problem but policymakers take on the challenges this year and hopeful they will consider our fiscal outlook in that context. thank you very much. i want to thank the leader for speaking with us today. [applause] >> thank you so much and thanks to the peter g peterson pearson -- peterson foundation for making this conversation possible. before we get started, i want to remind everyone if you want to tweet at us and get jake's attention on the ipad or questions or thoughts as we go through the conversation and without further ado, please welcome nancy pelosi to the stage. [applause] congresswoman, thank you so much for joining us. >> my pleasure. >> so no shortage of things to talk about as we said before you came out here so we will jump right off. you began this week in kind of a spat with the president but most notably, you are one of the first people to call for jeff sessions, the attorney general, to resign. yesterday, he recused himself,
you're not happy with that. of t people to call for jeff sessions, the attorney general, to resign. yesterday, he recused himself. you are not happy with that. >> let me thank the foundation and michael for hosting us here this morning and enjoy your presentation and it's for us to address it deficit. our ll of us are to make contribution.
whatever you want to do, it must be paid for. because from the start, the interest on the debt was money just totally -- it wasn't an investment, just money down the drain and even when president reagan was president, to say we have to reduce the deficit because it is an opportunity cost that would create growth d would increst and --
president bush was in the agreement that came right before president clinton became president. pay as you go, it was an investment, it was a tax cut, pay as you go, and that meant -- president clinton's budgets were in surplus or in balance and we came into president bush, tax cuts for the high end and give drug, medicare part d soared. eficit we went from a debt reduction. so when president obama took office, $1.4 trillion before he took office. and now 70% since then.
but the problem is but on as pays you go, you want to invest n education. and paying for everything that we do. i agree with what michael said. that's the way to -- and i would say this in closing, nothing reduces it to the treasury than investments to education, higher education, lifetime learning for our workers. that helps -- that brings money into the treasury. cut pell grants and head start. under their budget, maybe 100 kids, that's a false economy, because again, the investment
into education, again research and development, all of those things to keep america number one and help people aspirations and when we send people to the table, any good idea is welcome, but it has to create growth and educe the deficits and jobs. >> i want to follow up on that before we get to jeff sessions. [laughter] something called the border adjustability tax, which for those who have not been following it like we have, it basically means that the country will begin taxing imports instead of exports.[br] they want to use that to pay for tax cuts.[br] what do you think of that?[br] rep. pelosi: it's a transfer of wealth, but they want to give tax cuts to the high-end as usual.[br] i grant people their position.[br] their position if you want to create jobs, you give tax cuts to the wealthy.[br] if you want to balance the budget, you give tax cuts to the wealthy.[br] whatever you want to do, you
bring in money the they really care about thn- values.[al h el c if you say we are going to hold president -- oh they have a if but we though what the speaker thinks and the speaker wants to do the border adjust built tax, for those who haven't been following this, basically means that the country will begin taxing imports rather than -- and they want to use that to pay for tax cuts. what do you think? ms. pelosi: they want to give tax cuts to the high end. it is in their d.n.a. and i grant people their position and their position is if you want to create jobs, you give tax cuts to the wealthy. whatever you want to do. if it does trickle down, it will be good. and so be it, we had buttons made, so be it. we have a different view that you increase the paychecks of america's working families and to inject the money into the economy and create jobs and bring revenue.
so we have a different point of view and how we go to the table to debate that is the battle of the budget. show me your values, show me your budget. if it is for tax cuts for the rich and everything else has to thrive or not in that world and the deficit has to depend on that, then make it pay. e border tax is a real regressive tax on working families and we have practical -- maybe somebody in our caucus has not yet come forward. but it is not a place to go. and i don't know it has any success on the republican side. but you described what it is. let us have a border tax to bring in money that is going to
have -- affect the consumer, in other words, if we charge, pass it onto the consumer. again affecting consumer consumption in order to give a tax break to the wealthy or lower their corporate tax. we agree we should lower the corporate tax. and one reason to do is not only make our companies to get them to pay some tax. that's a whole other session. and we may want to get around to -- >> jeff sessions. do the he -- we need to tax reform. we all agree and we think how we do it should be in a way that brings some of that money home and invest in infrastructure, bring it home at a lower tax
rate so folks will come home and pay tax. the other part of that is several years ago, we did repatriot funds with the fund that the companies woman invest in jobs in america. they got the lower tax rate and didn't turn around and invest in jobs. and when they said we need to repatriot funds and by the time they didn't invest. they said you are right. but this time we will. and i think that we have to have hat more firmly committed with the repatriot tration and the lower rate. but the tax issue is -- so many people talk about the all the things they believe in. addressing the climate crisis, gun safety, women's right to
choose, immigration reform, all those kinds of things. when you see the election, if they were paying more taxes. all of those things slip away. and that's what happens. people have to say that it is in their interest to have all of those things, which keep america number one. the education of our children. the safety of the neighborhoods in which they grow. the discretion that their families -- say the most important issues facing the congress are our children, our children, our chirp. the health and economic security of our children, safe and clean areas where they can live and thrive and share fullfulment in our country continues to be the great country that it is. all these things come back to the budget and what is important s how you ininvestigate your
resources. show me your values. who did you want to talk about? [laughter] >> the news of the day, the week, jeff sessions -- >> thank you to the peter -- [laughter] >> peter son g. peters foundation, they have remarkable factual work and michael, thank you for your leadership. > jeff sessions. and seriously though, you have called for him to resign and has recused himself. is that enough? >> we talked about a budget being a statement of values and we move into the leadership of our country, we have to talk not
only about the authority of the person's position but the moral authority of an administration narrowt we see is a very ecusal, a very narrow, i'm going to recuse myself on the election. there is a whole russian, personal and political of trump and his administration and his campaign. so this is in fact the meetings were innocuous, why did he denny he had them. he is the top cop. he is the highest law enforcement officer in the country. supposed to tell the truth. what does that say to the lawyers in the department of justice and what does it say to the american bar association and
alabama, they have standards of standards of professional conduct. , this is just totally unbelievable. and they are making excuses and splitting hairs and this and that, and we haven't seen the end of that. and as you see in the reports in the media, you take it for what it is worth -- [laughter] >> o', no. >> i think the president's attacks on the media are author tarnian and wrong. y point on this, the media has reported, has interviewed -- called a number of members of the armed services committee and hasn't found anyone yet in
addition to sessions who has en visited and asked for a meeting. >> 26 members and sessions is the only person that has met with him. you have been in congress with a little bit, have you ever met with the russian ambassador? ms. pelosi: not with this russian ambassador. >> help us understand the process. ms. pelosi: everything is about timing and the fact is that when these meetings were occurring, t just with attorney general sessions, but with others in the administration, it was very clear since the summer that the russians were hacking our election system. so it wasn't as if they were saying, hi, let's talk about the
ukraine. ukraine, that's a very serious matter. so here's the situation. first of all, i keep saying every week, let's take a deep breath. it's about this is about america. it's not about democrats or republicans. it's about our country. it is about our national security, which we must protect and defend, our nation and our constitution. it is about our values, our moral authority, how we are perceived in the world. when we find out that a country -- and i said at the convention, maybe some of you were at the monitor breakfast at first day of the convention -- the russians are hacking our system. i don't know this from an intelligence point of view because i couldn't talk about it if i did. but i know because it would cost me a lot of money to investigate
it their hacking of the democrats campaign committee. they were doing the democratic national committee. it is the russians. and took a number of weeks before the highest level, but that was self-evident and everybody knew it that the russians were hacking our system. in the fall and before the election, the highest level of confidence of our intelligence agencies said that the russians are hacking our system and it's a disruption to our election. everybody signed off onto it except the fbi. the fbi said it's too close to the election. this is the first week in october. it's too close to the election. it might affect the election. what? two weeks later, fbi director comey sent a statement out that they were investigating emails of hillary clinton like 10 days before the election.
i don't know if he was going backward in time -- it's too late the first week and yet 10 days before the election he could make that statement. it had an impact on the election, too. two days before that, rudy giuliani said it was coming. everybody knew that there was something completely out of order that was going on. for him to say, i was just meeting with him what the normal course of a senator meeting and ambassador, the russian ambassador everybody knew was hacking our system, is beyond naive. it's almost pathetic. for him to go before the congress -- did you don't feel about elections? no. they be heated, maybe he didn't.
them? "no." with he did not tell the truth. you see other people in the trump administration who have met with the russian ambassador in view of one of the biggest intelligence officers in russian government in washington, d.c. this is a big deal because at the same time the president of the united states is saying i'm not sure about the sanctions. he is flirting with removing the sanctions, which for a time all of us have been trying to strengthen the sanctions and talking to heads of state in europe, saying we had to stick with the sanctions in order to change the aggressive behavior of the russians. he is flirting with that. a historic trinity. raising putinat,
at the expense of who we are as a people. the list goes on. what do the russians have on donald trump that he would do that? i want to know who knew what and all this, but it's important for us to find out and we must have that investigation. the very idea that top cop would go to his colleagues in the senate and withhold the truth -- this is not an unsophisticated person. this is a prosecutor himself. he knows what's there. this is a reflection of the weak moral authority of the president if they support what he's doing. that is what we have called for. this recusal is an admission that something went wrong, but it's not sufficient. and there are two things. one is the recusal as a surrogate of president trump's
campaign, then candidate trump's campaign and having communication with the russian government, knowing that they were hacking our system. that is one thing. that is what the recusal is about however narrow it is. the other part of it is the possibility of perjury, which is punishable by law for anybody else. certainly we should have that at least standard for the highest-ranking law enforcement person in our country. the russian influence is not just about this election, it is about what they want to continue to do here what they are doing , in germany and france. they are undermining democracy. these actions by the trump administration make them a ccomplices to it unless they help us get to the bottom of it. what are the republicans in congress afraid of?
they don't want to see the president's tax returns -- the first time since gerald ford. they don't want to investigate in a wholesome way the disruption of our system? what are the republicans afraid of? this goes right to the republicans in congress to their doorstep. the public sentiment is everything as they hear from their constituents. perhaps maybe they will be more inclined to seek the truth. anna: you talked about the moral fabric of this administration. certainly donald trump has acute interest, we will say, a value in your leadership. let me read a few quotes. "while i've been watching nancy's tape, i think she's incompetent actually." when you look at democrats in the party, it is getting smaller and smaller." when he talks about fight on capitol hill the other night and
says it's time to do away with those and come together with bipartisanship, what do you make of that? jake: he appeared to point your way. did you notice that? rep. pelosi: i have a hard time just watching what's going on. [laughter] i am going to have to look at a type of that. -- a tape of that. jake: i thought your head was kind of down for a little bit of that. rep. pelosi: first of all, i said he has done nothing. nothing for jobs. nothing on infrastructure. nothing on tax reform. nothing on -- he is going to renegotiate nafta. he has not notified congress to that effect, which you have to do to trigger the clock ticking. he said he would do it in the first 100 days. even after the clock starts ticking, it takes about 90 days. he is 42 days into it. he has done nothing except put wall street first, make america sick again, instill fear in our country and our communities with
his immoral and in some cases unconstitutional issues related to immigration with deportations and the ban, and done nothing to loosen the grip of russia on our political process, letting them get away with that. that's all he has done. when somebody asked me about what i think is his agenda, i use the word loosely "think" about these things. [laughter] i said at the press club when we did our pre-buttal. i think this is what gets under his skin. i said he reminds me of the story about yogi berra. in those days, he had a bad report card. you had to have mother and father signed the report card
with mother being more lenient , and the father being more demanding. it was a terrible report card. and he says, yogi, don't you know anything? yogi says, i don't even suspect anything. [laughter] i just don't know what he thinks and what he knows. what i do know is that got under his skin and that was his comeback. jake: does this get under your skin? rep. pelosi: not at all. anna: have you had any interactions with trump? what have they been like since he has moved into the white house? rep. pelosi: i spoke with him right after the election, but in terms of when he went to the white house, you know what happened. we go to the first meeting at the leadership house and senate, democrats and republicans. i will skip to the meeting part of it. the meeting started with him saying that he won the popular vote. even if you thought you did, we
-- why? -- we are talking about a legislative agenda. we are talking about a new president of the united states. show us your values. i won the popular vote. jake: he didn't. rep. pelosi: it doesn't matter. it matters that he thinks he did. here's the thing. i mean, look, this is trivial. it is just a reflection of what is important to a person -- the size of the crowd, the size of the vote. neither being factual statements. this is what we have to deal with. when a person who doesn't know the size of the crowd or the size of the vote makes a statement about my leadership, i don't trust his judgment. here's the thing. he says i won the popular vote. i said, that is not true. there's no evidence to support that. we knew somebody was standing in line for which turned out not to be true as well.
then, when i challenged him, he said -- that doesn't even count, california. 3 or 5 million who voted illegally and that doesn't count. you know what? that's what was important to him. that's how he started the meeting, so this is a problem. what we need to do is talk about how we do go forward to grow our economy, and to reduce the deficit, to have america be respected and preeminent in the world. and we are not going to have -- it's amusing, but it really isn't funny to see how he prioritizes things. again, nothing. i remind you that when president obama stood on the steps of the capitol in 2009 january 20, i want swift, bold action now to create good paying jobs, train our kids for jobs in the future, the list goes on. one week and one day after that
speech, we passed the recovery act. one week after that, the senate did. four weeks after the inauguration, february 17, the president signed the recovery and reinvestment act, creating or saving 4 million jobs. he signed the lily ledbetter insuranced health state program, many more. even president bush, though i didn't agree with him, when he took office and made his speech at the joint session, he had a tax plan that he had created and presented. this president has nothing to present and it's a stunning thing. the republicans have been baying at the moon for seven years about the afford will care act. we have not seen a plan in seven
years except to repeal and cut it back. show us something. why wouldn't he have something? he talks about infrastructure in his speech. he didn't even offer particulars. this is where we go from here. he says we are going to do these things, but not an initiative. when people say, can you work with them? show us something to work with. so far we haven't seen it. jake: let's talk about that. let's talk about working together. one thing that anna and i have been talking about with democrats and republican's on the hill, and it's funny because a lot of capitol hill republicans realize that despite your disagreements with george bush and john boehner, there's been many occasions in the last decade where you have had to bail them out on votes, on a whole host of issues where you have kind of done so begrudgingly at times, but you have done it. i want to ask you -- on issues like the debt ceiling and government funding, which are both two big issues that we see coming up here in the next 4-6
months, talk about your mind and how you see this state of play and how you see the mood of democrats about cooperating with the president on such huge issues. rep. pelosi: i'm glad you brought up president bush. even though i disagreed with president bush profoundly on the war in iraq and what could be worse than that, we worked very much together on so many issues. we passed the biggest energy bill in the history of our country, a stimulus bill relating to refundable tax credits for poor people, you wanted pet far, and we did a number of things together including the dreaded tarp, which his numbers -- his members abandoned him on. president george w. bush the best president on immigration in terms of respect he has the people of the policy advocated.
he couldn't persuade his party. this isn't about republicans or democrats networking -- -- not working together. no, it was not like that at all. we had a responsibility to find common ground. i did that with speaker boehner as well. on the subject of the debt ceiling, this shouldn't even be a question. this is in the constitution. we take an oath to protect independence that the debt of america is not in question. i don't know how much is in the leadership of the committee on the democratic side of ways and means and finance, but they are making clear to the administration that we want a clean debt ceiling, lifting of the debt ceiling. that doesn't mean that we are going to have a debate about whether we are going to lift it
or not, because even the debate lowered our credit rating a few years ago when that debate took place. we can't have that. we can't have that. from a standpoint of that, we stand ready to work with the president to lift a clean debt ceiling, not one bar down in ideological who knows what? i don't think anybody knows what. just clean. i forged two places in congress -- the appropriations committee and intelligence. two places where we really largely worked in a bipartisan way. the appropriators will be able to come to terms, i think, with the appropriations bills. it's just a question of what comes from on high. what's coming from on high when you see the president say we will do $54 billion on defense -- we all want to have the defense we need. what is your mission?
what is this for? we also measure our security and the health, education, and well-being of the american people, and that's a source of our strength as well. in terms of our economic and the health of our people. you cannot take $54 billion and upset the agreements that have been carefully crafted of parity between domestic and defense, but also recognizing that on the domestic side, it's included homeland security, intelligence, state department, veterans affairs, some of them may going -- some intel may go into the defense side, but some on the domestic side. we have all of the domestic agenda but is really a defense function. if you say we are going to hold
that harmless, you have very little to invest in education, research and development, science, judiciary, transportation, housing, all the other responsibilities to meet the needs of the american people. the battle of the budget is a fight that we have to have. i have a lot of confidence in some of the republicans on the appropriations committee as they know what our responsibilities are. we anna: we are running short of time so we will move on to legislative priorities. clearly not a lot of agreement with donald trump on a lot of things you said that so far. a $30 billion spending package. pending obamacare by the spring. do you think he is unrealistic in terms of how fast he thinks things can actually get done? [laughter] rep. pelosi: well we have to start. that would be a good place. if we get started at the election. i talked about president obama
from inauguration day. but we didn't start on inauguration day. you start the day after the election, so it would be unrealistic to say things would happen so quickly if you never start. [laughter] jake: makes sense. rep. pelosi: the thing is just to go to the affordable care act, because somewhere in the bowels of the capital, there may be a proposal for a formal care cash for the affordable care act -- for the affordable care act. jake: the republicans have put their alternative health care plan in a closed locked room so their members can receive it. by the way, to be fair, they knocked you guys for being secretive and now they are doing something similar. rep. pelosi: no, they may have not. that is not fair. we had scores of hearings. we didn't have anything locked down any place.
for d the senate marked up 22 days. that is one of the longest markups in history. that is not to be fair -- i do't know. in any case, you gave me the chance to point out the difference and i thank you for , that. [laughter] the fact is we had regular sessions where we were required, mandated that we drilled down every word in the bill so that people could understand, comment, amend whatever it was in it. they knew that. that was then, this is now. now we have a situation where they want to repeal and replace. the only thing repeal and replace has going for it is alliteration. [laughter] they don't have the votes. jake: you don't think it will happen?
rep. pelosi: they may come up with something, but here's the thing. we have said the purpose of doing the affordable care act was to lower costs. even if everyone loves their care and insurance, the rising costs of health care in our country was totally unsustainable to individuals, to families, so small business, corporate america. it was totally unsustainable to the public sector. local, state, and federal government. michael pointed out the continuation of that path is largely the biggest contributor is the cost of prescription drugs. that is another subject. the point was to lower costs, expand coverage, more benefits, and increase access. 20.4 million people didn't have health insurance before.
what is really important, and what i think the republicans may care about while not really caring much about the 20 million is the 155 million people who have more benefits at lower costs through their employer. 155 million who get their health care from their employer -- many of them have pre-existing medical conditions. they say we are going to keep that. we are going to keep the cap and the 26-year-old. you can't do that unless you have an insurance plan that has money coming in to do it. the other part of it is this is a free market initiative -- romney care, heritage foundation, individual mandate. you have got to have the pool in order to have the resources in order to be able to afford the coverage. now one of the things that is endangered by going down this path is all the above, but also
what the affordable care act is took $800 billion in savings from the medicare program and applied it to the longevity of medicare, the prolonged solvency, maybe 10 more years. it also strives to close the doughnut hole, that means the cost of prescription drugs are lower for seniors. we still want to do more. it still has the free checkup in the beginning so that seniors are healthier because they have that free checkup to begin with. that lowers costs. the sooner you intervene, the healthier and lower the costs. that's at risk. the biggest problem i think they will face is what happens to expanded medicaid. medicaid is where a lot of expansion was for lower income people. it is an initiative that people
think of as poor children, which is important, but the largest amount of money is spent on seniors and people with disabilities, that would also be people who need rehab, opioids, the rest of that. over 50% of the money spent on long-term health care for seniors either in nursing homes or daycare, etc., is for medicaid. i will just close by saying kasich said thank god for medicaid. that's where were going to get the money to deal with the rehab and the opioid issue has intensified the need for those resources. they have always said medicare should weather on the vine. -- wither on the vine. the speaker has had in his budget the removal of the guarantee of medicare.
you remove the guarantee, you don't have medicare. you say to seniors, remember when we didn't have medicare and you have to go shop for health insurance? here's a voucher, a small voucher for you to go do that again. they have big challenges because this legislation was not just about the affordable care act and health care. it was about the good health of america -- prevention, early intervention, and the rest. as i said, they have been baying for seven years and have nothing in the basement. even though they may have wanted to characterize it that way. we will see what they have to offer. or let's say it in another way, if it does nothing to harm the path of lowering cost, increasing coverage, and
expanding access, we have something to talk about. jake: let's do a rapidfire because we're running out of time. tax reform by august -- that's what the speaker says. that is what the white house says. is that possible? rep. pelosi: it's very hard. we all think we should have that, but we have not seen any initiative to go to the table. as i said, president bush had his tax proposal in the address, that would've been a few days ago, to be on the path. we will see what the half to offer, but they have a kettle of fish. they probably should not have kicked the can down the road on the debt ceiling, and doing again the budget bill, the appropriations bill just until the end of april. to have to do that or there will be a shutdown of government. and their head of the office of
management and budget was the leader of the shutdown and voted against opening up government at the time, so we will see what value they place on that. anna: you not talked at all about the border wall. will democrats oppose any funding package in any shape or form that includes money for building a wall? rep. pelosi: the border wall is unwise, immoral, ineffective, enormously costly. how are they going to pay for it? you know the mexicans are not paying for it. if we had some additional money to spend, technology, personnel, and the rest, there's a better place to go. i just don't see that. he talks about it like he's building a wall though. we will see what he has to say, but i don't think he has too much support on the democratic side. the republicans seem to be cheering away at him. as they were cheering away the overturning of tpp which over
200 of them voted for. yay. [laughter] jake: something that you guys cheered for at the state of the union, one of the few things in democrats cheered for in unison -- rep. pelosi: mrs. trump? jake: no, the infrastructure package. rep. pelosi: no, no. there was no content. the president, in addition to being a fearmonger, is a notion monger. there is no idea that comes forward that says, this is our goal, these are the facts -- he just says, we're going to have infrastructure. when he said there's going to be a public-private partnership, that was menacing. sayingaker is quoted as there has to be a 40 to 1 ratio
of private investment into the infrastructure. $40 from the private sector for every one dollar of the public. that's not going to have the impact we need to build our infrastructure. i said to the president from day one in every conversation, which hasn't been many. jake: how many have there been? rep. pelosi: depends on if you're talking on the phone or one thing or another. i made it clear to the in ministration that if this is a real infrastructure bill, let's talk. if this is a tax bill disguised as an infrastructure bill, that's not going to happen. when he says public-private partnership, that could be a good formula. let's see what is. if it's what we suspect what it could be, which is what the wealthy individuals getting tax credit to build something that will ownl won and -- and charge tolls, that's not a
go. taxpayers are funding it and paying for the maintenance and some of you making a profit off of it under the tax plan. that's not going to happen. we have several trillion dollar deficit in our infrastructure, which has never been partisan. we have always worked together in that way except when president obama proposed something and we no longer had the majority. but not as big of an infrastructure bill as we needed. whether it's transportation or highways are high-speed rail, we can probably spend as much money on water systems, which some are over 100 years old. bricks and wood. water systems. broadband infrastructure for the future. this is a jobs, jobs, jobs bill. we have to have some repatriated funds and perhaps an
infrastructure bank, perhaps a public-private partnership, but it can't be something that transfers wealth once again to the president's wealthy friends and then charges tolls for the consumers to pay for something they already funded through tax credits. but he did mention it. why doesn't he have a bill? anna: so we are definitely going to need to wrap. i cannot let you off the stage. you have oftentimes been critiquing the donald trump. the party has have a lot of infighting in different wings. you have a new leader at the dnc under tom perez. there has been some criticism of stagnant leadership under house democrats. do you have a strong 2018 ahead of you? what is your message to rust belt democrats? rep. pelosi: is that stagnation another name for me? [laughter] rep. pelosi: here is the thing. it really is amazing to me because the beauty of the democratic party is that we have
diversity in our ranks. who would want to be the head of a party that is a rubberstamp? when the press is saying there is division, well, we have competition about leadership and approach and style and the new realities in terms of technology and participation from outside. we have always been a party that has been from the bottom up. what is exciting now with tom perez and keith working together is a good thing because they , bring their talent to it, but it's not about the democrats. it's about america. but we see that gives us so much hope is that people see the urgency, understand elections have consequences. since the election, i don't know if you hear it, but we hear it all over the country. what can we do?
we have never seen anything like that after an election in a manner which we are seeing it. the urgency, taking responsibility, that gives us opportunity. our members are united regardless of who runs and personal ambition, which is part of a political party. they are united and they may have some differences about one subject or another in terms of their enthusiasm for certain things, but they are united by our values that center on america's working families. that is why they are democrats. that is the fight that we have with the republicans. trickle-down versus the middle class bubbling up. that is the debate. that is why we all come together. we have -- we may have less enthusiasm on one subject or another, but our unity is about those working families and that is our purpose.
it has always been our purpose long before any of these other issues came along. these other issues are part of our value system and we have the strength, the talent, etc. to accommodate all that. it amuses me to see the president -- oh they have a division. it is not a division. we are the democratic party. we are by definition diverse. we are by definition always challenging how we go forward. i feel very confident -- i don't know if you want to talk politics. [laughter] maybe we can come back another day. we feel confident that we know how to defeat a republican white house. we did so when president bush was there because we had a plan that will unify. no, we will put together a claim -- a playbook of listening to the people. people say where is your plan? if i can do with a plan, why do i come to you without talking to me? we are listening to all of the new possibilities since we won
in 2006, opportunity and technology are so great. putting together the playbook. that will be put together in a grassroots consensusbuilding way. we are almost getting to that. then we will put together the game plan. we won't show you that. we will show you that as it unfolds. anna: thank you. [applause] unfortunately we are out of time. those on livestream, please follow us on politico and online. thank you to the peter g peterson foundation for making this event possible. the thursday9th with senate majority leader mitch mcconnell. thank you.
>> on the sunday news shows this morning, president trump claimed that then president obama had ordered wiretaps on telephones at trump tower during last year's election was a topic of conversation. week, sarah huckabee sanders call for a congressional investigation into the allegation. reacting to the report, the former director of intelligence ,ames clapper on meet the press and house minority leader nancy pelosi on cnn's state of the union. >> there have been quite a few reports. jonathan and others are clear in
is not true-- it peer the new york times, bbc, have also talked about and reported on the potential of this having had happened. the thing is let's find out and have an investigation. it's include this as part of . that is what we are asking. >> was the principal source the bright art story which links to the new york times, but the new york times does not say anything definitive and donald trump does. there is nothing equivocating about what he said he and i just found out that obama had my wires tapped. that is not looking into something. he said it happened. the biggerthink thing is you guys are always telling us to take the media seriously. we are today. we are taking reports that the new york times and fox news and multiple outlets have reported, let's take a closer look and look into this.
>> let me start with the president's tweet yesterday, the idea that maybe president obama ordered an illegal wiretap of his offices. we had something like that happen, would that be something you were aware of? >> i obviously cannot speak officially anymore but i will say for the part of the national security apparatus, there was no such wiretap activity mounted atinst the president-elect the time as a candidate or against his campaign. i cannot speak for other title iii authorized entities in the government or a state and local entity. >> would it be information you would know? >> yes, i would know that. yes. something like this, absolutely. >> you cannot confirm or deny?
>> i can deny it? not to my knowledge. >> anything at trump tower? >> no. >> anything to change the subject from where the heat is. as one who has been engaged in the intelligence for a long time, i can tell you it is just ridiculous for president trump to say that president obama would ever order any wiretap of an american citizen. it is just not -- we don't do that. is a smear. you make up something and then you have the press write about it and then say everybody is writing about the charge. it is the tool of an authoritarian to always be talking about what you want them to talk about. then to take a to the core