tv Newsmakers with Representative John Yarmuth CSPAN July 31, 2017 10:01am-10:36am EDT
susan: our guest on newsmakers is congressman john yarmuth. he represents louisville and the house of representatives and he is the top democrat in the house budget committee. our two reporters, economic policy reporter for the new york times and dave who covers politics for the washington post. we are keeping with a really late night in washington dc or early morning, we are watching what happened in the senate and that's where i want to start with congressman yarmouth. john mccain cast the deciding vote that seem to put in and to the republican plan for health care reform. the system still has big problems investor deal with. how you see this playing out. rep. yarmuth: it is great to be with you. i did not watch the old whole thing but i happened to
wake up when they were about to declare the bill dead. and watch the speech is afterwards. i think it is going to depend on how republicans feel and what positions the administration takes. the republicans know we have to fix the aca, the individual market, which is where the problems exist. they know that because they sabotaged it. interestingly, in their initial bill in the senate republican bill, they had the reinstitution of reinsurance programs. they had cost-sharing reductions which are in the affordable care act. those are things they set out to use to sabotage the functioning of the bill to begin with and now they are trying to reinsert them. i think the optimistic sign is that those provisions would form the foundation of a bipartisan approach to fixing the individual markets.
that? rep. yarmuth: that is a really good question. three month after it was supposed to be done. the appropriated have artie begun. they finished all the 12 appropriation bills in the committee and we voted on that last thursday night. it is a good question. i'll doubt if they love her pass the budget resolution in a house is right now it makes no sense. what they will end up doing is passing a skinny budget, got to find a new word. like we did earlier in the year, for the fiscal year, i know they want to use reconciliation to try and pass tax reform. my guess is that what we will do. the bill on thursday filing of the budgetary cap as part of the budget control act of 2011. actually what that bill last thursday night was a legal and the other appropriations bills, once we get back from august recess, we only have 12 legislative days but between fan in the end of the fiscal year to get all of that work done. my guess is they will do a skinny a budget agreement with reconciliation construction and some kind of continuing resolution to get funding through the end of the fiscal year because i don't see how we go regular order into the appropriations in that short amount of time.
david: what happens to the 2017 reconciliation construction? rep. yarmuth: once the reconciliation construction surpassed for 2018, the 2017 ones are invalidated. i don't think that matters right now. effectively the instructions used to do health care reform are moot. alan: what did you learn about the republican views of the reconciliation process going through imagining when democrats take back the congress. that allocation saying they will move with 51 votes and put in a lot of what we wanted without going through the 60 vote committee process. what you democrats take from that? i wish we wouldn't
do that. i wish we would take the position that any massive important piece of legislation should be done in a cooperative manner. ultimately i know we are polarized in unprecedented ways. i was part of the process in 2009 and 2010 and we actually reached out to republicans, that is one of the myths used in this debate currently that we never reached out. i remember meeting in which it was just the members there and are chairman of the time said to the republicans, is there anyway we can write a health care reform package that any of you can support. they just coldly said no. in the senate there were a lot of republican amendments accepted. a lot of concessions made in the attempt to get republican votes.
none of them worked. it is not good for the country whether it is democrat or republican where you pass a bill that is only partisan votes. i would hope that would be the lesson. the other part of the lesson is don't be sure you can control your caucus or conference. in a narrowly divided body you don't have to lose too many votes. >> was the next opportunity you see for cost-sharing to be passed? the white house threatened publicly to let the subsidies stop this bill would've funded them as a way to -- where's the next vehicle the markets might be stabilized. rep. yarmuth: >> first let me say in this dynamic, what we are talking about for the most part, we're talking about troubled markets in states run by republicans and
where the state administration decided not to try and make you affordable care act work. withholding the csr payments, the area would be penalizing republican red states of a lot of their voters. the next opportunity would be to do it as part of a massive negotiated spending package sometime in september. i think we will do the debt ceiling as part of that negotiation. i think there are opportunities to take those steps that can for the individual market. >> would democrats make raising the debt ceiling conditional on the csr? rep. yarmuth: i don't know if we are there yet. we haven't had a discussion about that with our leadership yet.
one of the agreements that is been made on a new -- informal basis between the republican and democratic leadership is that any kind -- in terms of a clean debt ceiling bill, any amendments or other provisions would be mutually agreed upon. we wouldn't insist on something republicans couldn't accept and they wouldn't either. i suspect that agreement will hold. that being said, republicans at least in the senate wanted to reinstitute the cost-sharing reductions. what republicans want to do is essentially reaffirm the legality of the question in reductions. again, i think that's a possibility at least on the senate side, republicans agreed with doing that. >> omb director mulvaney has called for changes to the budget process and changes to the cbo's to be tied to a lift with the
debt ceiling. you see any need for changes to the process? rep. yarmuth: >> i would certainly be open and have told the chairman of the budget committee that. i told tom price that when he was chairman. i think the process is not functioning not because the actual methodology is functioning because of a lack of political competency basically. what you need is essentially political courage to put these things together. i don't think the process is what's holding us back. >> do you think senator mccain possible last night in the sentiment could potentially herald the new era of bipartisanship? rep. yarmuth: that would be wonderful. it sure could. i think it is unlikely, i think we are still in a very sadly
polarized situation on the hill and in the country. part of the reason is, i think of it of the flaws in republican thinking and our approach to health care is they are really severely handicapped by two core philosophical beliefs. one is that the free market is always better and the federal government can't do anything right. as long as you're in that mindset, finding a governmental approach is going to be really difficult if you don't believe the government can do anything and are only interested getting the government out of the particular field like right now, many republicans are trying to do with the air traffic control system. this consistent ideological bias that has made it very difficult
for governors to govern effectively. >> this very long we began the democrats saying that a might run on 2015. democrats and number of discrete policy proposals they would vote on and did vote on. how much more do you think democrats need to put together for 2018? should discrete bills you can get a vote on if they have the majority, how much do people know about that in 2006? were they aware if democrats would raise. does this stuff penetrate? rep. yarmuth: that's a good question. in my particular race, i don't think that was the issue at all. i actually never used that. i wasn't quite aware of it. i think your incumbent candidates that here probably use that.
i was mainly focusing on two things, that was the iraq war and the problems with the bush administration and the unfairness of the bush tax cuts. i was basically running on effectively a more shared prosperity with the economy work for everyone and also against the foreign policy. my experience wouldn't tell you how much those things work or don't work. i know to talk about an aspirational message. remember the three pillars of the better deal are better jobs, better wages and better future. i think the aspirational aspect of that narrative is something that is really important. i we will flesh out that slogan with a lot of individual specific policies.
we already have some and there , will be many more to come. ultimately we are trying to introduce the concept of a better deal and a better future before we actually get into specifics. >> you will have discrete proposals that you will want democrat to vote on. do you have a sense of anything democrats could introduce that could get acted on. rep. yarmuth: first of all we are definitely going to be talking about infrastructure as a way to create good paying jobs. and infrastructure proposal that doesn't rely on enormous tax cuts for already wealthy investors. that will be first and foremost one of our policies. we are going to be talking about retirement security. we will talk about education and job training. those are things that are solely needed.
we have to figure out a way to match our workforce with the jobs of the future and i think the first party/politicians who, -- who, with an effective program to do that are going to be very successful. that is what the american people are looking for. they understand the economy is changing rapidly and i think that's part of the frustration of many people is that many people feel dislocated and disconnected from where the world is going and we have to figure out a way to do that. >> do you think infrastructure is something you can work with president trump on? he sees that as a possibility to work with democrats. rep. yarmuth: it remains to be seen. i think we would be more than willing to do that. what i've seen out of the president so far is somebody seems to be totally content and obsessed with governing for the people who voted for him and that's it.
he is shown no willingness to try and gain favor or support from anybody other than his base and he has never reached out to anybody in congress to get anything done on the democratic side. if he persists in that attitude that he only is going to work for the people who go to the rallies and applaud for him, then i don't know. even if we agreed on some and policy wise, it may not help. >> just on other potential areas of agreement, trade is one where democrats have similar views. the potential for steel tariffs might suggest the you may retaliate on kentucky bourbon of all products. you make of that? rep. yarmuth: that would be the shame and we would be penalizing very thirsty people around the world if we did that. i think that is one of these
very significant pitfalls with a trade policy on an ad hoc basis. it does lend itself to anecdotal repercussions and reciprocation's. i would say this is why it is useful to trade deals. i voted against tpp not because i didn't think there were a lot of good things in it and because i thought the theory behind it was not valid, that if we didn't determine the terms of trade in asia, then china would. the problem is that i couldn't go to my supporters and workers throughout my district and say this time it's going to be different, and by that i mean trade deal sometimes are great as long as you enforce them and we never enforced any to any
extent. i think whether we proceed with this trade agreement in the european union, if we try to revitalize or retrieve some of the tpp provisions, i think that could be a very productive bipartisan initiative as long as we make wind is a country we will enforce the agreement so we are not truly at a disadvantage even know on paper we are playing on an equal playing field. susan: we have seven minutes left. >> i want to ask you, in terms of tax reform now, where do you think things will go now that health care is off the table? will there be urgency to get something done there? are you expecting any kind of possibility of democratic ideas getting into a tax bill? rep. yarmuth: i think it's highly unlikely there will be a comprehensive
tax bills it's all republican initiatives. that is just not going to fly. this recent experience shows republicans of their trying to do that. these vague policies out of the white house disturbed me. initially a one-page paper and last week, six paragraphs with very general principles on tax reform. in tax policy, everything is related to numbers and specifics. what concerns me is it doesn't seem to be any significant strong leadership on the issues. that is a recipe for chaos. particularly with something as complicated as tax reform. the proposals that the white house put out, cutting corporate taxes and business taxes to 15% and allowing them to pass through which means every sophisticated high-end company around the country will restructure their life so they
can pay a 15% tax rate, those of the types of things democrats will never support. but i think democrats would be amenable to a moderate reduction in corporate tax rates. i think the average rate of the oecd countries is about 27%. i think president obama was willing to go to a 28%. i think that by itself is something we can work together on. >> how low would you go? rep. yarmuth: i might be willing to go to 25%. i would have to look at with a loss of revenue would be versus the potential gains in economic activity. that is the trade-off. then you get into the personal situation. if you're talking about doubling the standard induction, which basically for most people makes the home mortgage deduction irrelevant.
it makes the charitable deduction irrelevant. all of a sudden you have every nonprofit group in the country lobbying the congress against that. then you of the homebuilders and realtors, everybody in the real estate industry on your case. i think the pressure against those types of changes. would be a norma's. -- enormous. everybody remains committed to a tax system that is simpler, that is more fair, that allows middle-class people to keep more income and working families. it may be as a little bit more. they really add to the economic inequality in the country. the carried interest provision which allows them to pay 15% taxes.
when warren buffett is offended by. those things we're actually getting on the table i think hopefully we could negotiate on a bipartisan basis. susan: about three minutes left. >> how would you finance and expansion of health care? we are talking about ways to relieve taxes on the middle-class class people, the way we funded the aca is through higher taxes hit a lot of people. that is something, you can hear republicans are ready attacking democrats for, because they can't pass a repeal, the threat that your taxes would explode under a single player plan. what mechanism makes the most sense? rep. yarmuth: i think if you expand medicare what you do is you asked employers in corporate america since you're going to be presumably relieving them of the burden of thousands of dollars per employee, you asked them to pay more taxes.
i think most ceos i talked to, unfortunately most of the month sam the record right now, but most would tell you we would gladly pay several thousand dollars per employee to put them and all of our people on medicare. i think what you will see in the next probably five to 10 years is we are going as a major push for medicare for everybody and it's going to come from corporate america, not from a political system. corporations are competing globally with companies that don't have to pay for their directly for their employees health care and i remember a few years ago, general motors said their health care payments were the largest single component of the cost of a car. businesses again are saying this is a really sustainable, particularly when we are competing worldwide. i haven't run the numbers. i know there is one report that said if you went to medicare for everyone it would add $32
trillion to the cost of governmental expenses over 10 years, but that is basically taking all the money spent in the private sector and transferring it into the government, so i'm not sure systemwide whether there is an opportunity to save money. susan: we have a minute left. let me ask you this, you return home for august break with an electorate out there. what you think you'll find? rep. yarmuth: what i find on a weekly basis when i go home is an incredible amount of angst. this administration has traumatized a lot of the country and they fear for the future of our government. they are concerned about the cost and status in the world. they are just barraged by these many scandals and crises that occur on an almost hourly basis.
i suspect in going to continue to see that this week certainly hasn't helped with scaramucci's situation and the health care bill and the jeff sessions controversy. i expect i'm going to see a constituency that is very anxious about what's happening with their government. susan: thank you very making a stop at newsmakers. we appreciate your time. john yarmuth, thank you very much. friday morning as we are taking this late night last night. you are outside of the plaza, lots of members of the public. david: the striking thing about this whole process was the complete absence of people asking for a repeal bill on the streets. there is no public pressure for repeal. there was a little bit from industry conservative groups,
but a general vanishing of the ideas of the idea that repeal would be good as policy that it would be a political victory, but that wouldn't -- every protest i saw was fairly small, but fairly targeted. the coalition of groups focused on sending people to offices. 10 people at an office without a larger impact than a thousand people in the town square. last night was similar to that. fairly small but people telling individual scriptorium. much better for democrats than expected. alan: where were the trump supporters? why was there no mobilization? david: i think without barack obama as president, i'm not trying to be patronizing, without the idea this was being imposed by a person unpopular with republicans, the policy itself and democrats were able to point
attention at the fact that medicaid expansion was part of this, the various gains for medicaid -- for middle-class people, those were -- absent the political power of the presidency and these people, it just became part of the reality. republicans didn't have a vision for why your health care would be cheaper and better apart from the president saying it. i kept waiting for a response. i talked to conservative groups. the more libertarian republicans had won, below republicans came up with was not as compelling as defeat. no effort from the white house to mobilize supporters to get to capitol hill to have an opposing viewpoint. does that surprise you?
david: a little bit because this is not a president that has trouble drawing crowds. the favorite super pac of the president even propose the idea of having some protests during the longer recesses -- i should say rallies in favor of this and people weren't showing up. the key groups that have existed have shrunk since the beta the movement since 2009 and 2010. they are mainly focused on having these meetings with top republicans saying pass it. when they had a concrete goal it was something that didn't have purchase especially in the republican caucus. it was some and start over, which is easy for them to say, does run the 2018 election on the failure of obamacare. it's tough for them to say sorry you lost insurance but we need to fix is after the next election. susan: a big week for john
mccain. what were your looks at how he performed? alan: this whole drama. the speech he gave earlier in the week when he came back dramatically was quite poignant and a think people were surprised when he cast his vote for the motion to proceed, which seems to contradict the sentiment he was giving their. then it's the regular order and bipartisanship. but then at the final moment last night casting the vote to essentially kill the reform effort was quite striking. i think it surprised a lot of people and support his claim as a maverick from years past. an elder statesman with nothing to lose, probably not running for office again considering his health concerns. i think he was really standing up for what the senate is supposed to stand for. >> we want to ask about republican leadership with mitch mcconnell.
the senate leader in the seeker of the past did not deliver on health care. what's next for them with regard to their legislative agendas? david: the face of their public in leadership has a plan which is to get a -- force a vote on obama care. if they did's do so they would do that. there are seven republicans voted against that plan. as far as leadership moves, they don't have a plan that kind of run out of time in two months. there was a realization weeks ago -- months ago when they thought the house would be easy to move on tax reform. alan: i think health care is not dead and you it will never die as long as republicans are in charge. i think for the moment, there is more urgency for tax reform. we saw a joint statement from the republican leadership that they will be pressing ahead and
trumbull be barnstorming country later in august. we'll see if he can articulate susan: we did not have time to talk about all the news. thanks to both of you for being here. wille washington institute host a discussion on lone wolf terrorism. it you will be able to watch that at 12:30 p.m. eastern. about an hour ago, john kelly was sworn in as the staff. he had been the homeland security secretary. he was tapped to replace reince priebus. the president spoke briefly with reporters in the oval office.
>> we just swore in general kelly. job as do a spectacular chief of staff. oft he has done in terms homeland security is record shattering. with a very controversial situation, there has been very little controversy. i want to congratulate you on having done a fantastic job and we look forward to an even better job as chief of staff. thank you very much. we will see you in the wardroom. we are having a cabinet meeting. we've done very well, lots of records created. market, at the stock it's the highest it's ever been. the unemployment is the lowest
in 17 years. business spirit is the highest it's ever been. we have a tremendous space. we have a tremendous group of support. the country is optimistic. well,untry is doing very strongest stock market ever. business is very enthusiastic. we will proceed and keep going. we have a fantastic chief of staff, he's going to do a really great job. thank you very much. >> today he is 71 and he lives
in michigan. the ceremony is 3:00 in the east room of the white house or in a we will have it live for you on sarah huckabee sanders will be briefing reporters at 3:45 p.m. we will have it live here on c-span. communicators,he >> people were putting things online and there was money at risk area hackers started getting jobs doing security. i had to convince my boss to send me to death con for my job. we tried to make it sound more corporate and professional. a realuld just a row