tv U.S. Senate CSPAN December 2, 2014 10:30am-2:01pm EST
understand that there's words for political support and grown with -- quote -- "bundling." about when we send a person who has never been to the country, has no familiarity with foreign policy or national security to a nation of this importance -- of this importance -- then, my friends, we are making a serious mistake. the hungarian prime minister is distancing himself from the values seder by most european nations. orban said they're receiving service from abroad, needing to be "monitored" as he considered those to be foreign powers. we're talking about the national democratic institute, freedom house and others. he calls them "we're not dealing with civil society members but paid political activists who are trying to help foreign interests
here." amazing. orban, who has fueled public projects, says he wants to replace welfare societies with a work fair state. mr. orban is cozying up to vladimir putin. he ihe has now entered a nuclear deal and is practicing the same kind of antidemocratic practices as what cements t seems to be he model, vladimir putin. so i would also like to point out that a letter -- i'd like to have entered it in the record -- to senator reid from the 15 former presidents of the american foreign services association who say that, as former presidents of the american foreign services association, the professional association of trade union of career members of the foreign service, we urge you to oppose
granting senate consent to three candidates. they mention george tooni snchts colleen bell to hungary and noah bryson mamet. i think we should pay ateption to these former members of the diplomatic corps. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mccain: i urge my colleagues for once to vote against a totally unsuitable nominee to be ambassador to a very critical country in the strugglstruggle that's going ton as colonel vladimir putin tries to extend the reach of russia and restore the old russian empire. we will be sending a message by this appointment that it really isn't that important. i urge my colleagues to cast a "no" vote. mr. president, i yield the floor.
i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call: mr. mccain: i ask that the quorum be lifted. the presiding officer: without objection. the question occurs on the noah bryson mamet nomination. is there a sufficient second? there appears to be. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
the presiding officer: any senators wishing to vote or change their vote? if not, the ayes are 50. the noes are 43. the nomination is confirmed. there are now two minutes of debate equally divided prior to the bell nomination. who yields time? the senate will be in order. who yields time? the senator from arizona.
mr. mccain: mr. president, we're about to vote on a totally -- the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. mr. mccain: we're about to vote on a totally unqualified individual to be ambassador to a nation which is very important to our national security interest. her qualifications are as a producer of the television soap opera "the bold and the beautiful," contributed $8 hundred,000 to obama in the last election and bundled more than $2.1 million for president obama's reelection effort. i am not against political appointees. i understand how the game is played, but here we are, a nation that's on the verge of ceding its sovereignty to a neofacist dictator and we're going to send the producer of "the bold and beautiful." i urge my colleagues to stop its
foolishness. i urge a no vote. mrs. boxer: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from california. mrs. boxer: you would think this is the first time the president ever nominated someone who is a political appointee. that is ridiculous. just because somebody is a producer of a very popular show that doesn't disqualify them. i could point out people who perhaps didn't work at all. let's be clear here. she is an intelligent woman, knows how to be successful. she'll do a good job and do vecialtion i think, in this -- and do very well, i think, in this position because i know her well and she knows how to make friends and she's not angry. i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the question is on the nomination. is there a sufficient second? there appears to be. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
there are now two minutes equally divided prior to a cloture vote on the coloretti nomination. who yields time? without objection, the clerk will report the motion to invoke cloture. the clerk: cloture motion: we, the undersigned senators, in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate, do hereby move to bring to a close debate on the nomination of nani a. coloretti of california to be deputy secretary of department of housing and urban verntle signed by 17 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent, the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is, is it the sense of the senate that debate on the nomination of nani a. coloretti of california to be deputy secretary of department of housing and urban development shall be brought it a close? the yeas and nays are mandatory under the rule. the clerk will call the roll.
and urban development, nani a. coloretti of california to be deputy secretary. the presiding officer: with respect to the nominations confirmed under the previous order, the motions to reconsider have been made and laid upon the table and the president will be immediately notified of the senate's actions. there are now two minutes equally divided prior to a cloture vote on the adler nomination. who yields time? without objection, all time is yielded back. the clerk will report the the motion to invoke cloture. the clerk: cloture motion, we, the undersigned senators, in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate, hereby move to bring to a close the debate on the nomination of robert s. adler of the district of columbia to be a commissioner of the consumer product safety commission signed by 18 senators. the presiding officer: by unanimous consent the mandatory quorum call has been waived. the question is: is it the sense of the senate that debate
the presiding officer: are there any senators wishing to vote or wishing to change their vote? if not, the ayes are 5 and the nays are 40 and the motion is agreed to. the clerk will report the nomination. the clerk: consumer product safety commission, robert s. add ler of the district of columbia to a commissioner. the presiding officer: under the previous order, time until 4:00 p.m. will be equally divide in its usual form. a senator: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from south dakota.
mr. thune: are we in morning business? the presiding officer: we are postcloture on the adler nomination. mr. thune: very good. madam president, i want to speak today about some of what's happening here with the agenda and where we might be headed. and i think it's important to point out that the democrats here after election seem to be in disarray. we've got fractures that are emerging on the left and the right. senate democrats and the president are blaming each other for the democrats' devastating election loss. the president is threatening a veto to -- on a bipartisan tax extenders package that was negotiated by the house ways and means committee chairman and the senate democrat leader. and the senior senator from new york told an audience last week that passing obamacare was a mistake. to quote the senator, "unfortunately democrats blew the opportunity the american people gave them. we took their mandate and we put all our focus on the wrong
problem -- health care reform. it wasn't the change that we were hired to make." madam president, i could not agree more but it is quite an admission from the third-ranking democrat in the senate. back in 2009, republicans tried to tell democrats that we should focus on the economy and that any health care reform should be targeted at helping those struggling to afford health care rather -- rather than upsetting the entire system. the democrats refused to listen. now it appears at least some of madam president, the president tried to sell the health care law as a benefit to the middle class. at a 2010 tele-town hall, he told his listeners that. he said once this is fully in effect, middle-class people will pay less for their health care, unquote. as many have found, the president's health care law has actually forced them to pay more. i have lost count the number of
letters i have got from constituents in south dakota telling me how much their health insurance has gone up since the so-called affordable care act passed. one constituent emailed me in november to tell me, and i quote -- "please do something about the affordable care act. health insurance is no longer affordable." in march, our family health insurance policy went up $150 a month. now we received notice of another $12 increase in january of twist for a total monthly premium of $857. this is more than our mortgage, and we cannot afford it." end quote. now, madam president, let me just repeat part of that last line. this is more than our mortgage. how are middle-class families supposed to afford what amounts to a second mortgage payment each month? the answer, of course, is that they can't. the president can talk all he wants about the supposed
benefits of his health care law, but the fact is obamacare has made life worse for this south dakota family and it's made things worse for millions of families across the united states. since bek was signed into law, family health insurance premiums have risen by about $3,000. that's a strain on any family budget just by itself. but it's even worse when we realize that the average family's income has dropped by nearly $3,000 over the course of the obama presidency. on top of this, obamacare has forced millions of americans off health insurance plans that they had that they liked. frequently they have been forced to pay more for their new plans while getting less. thanks to obamacare, americans have lost access to doctors that they liked and trusted. they have lost access to convenient hospitals. they have lost access to medications. that's just the damage obamacare is doing to americans' health care. that's not to mention the damage
it's doing to the economy at large. as the senator from new york made clear in his comments, he thinks the democratic party erred in passing obamacare because what americans actually wanted was not health care legislation but jobs legislation, and he's right. the democrats went ahead with obamacare anyway, not only has it not helped the economy as the president said it would, it's actually hurting the economy. just take one small part of obamacare, the tax on life-saving medical devices like pacemakers and insulin pumps. this tax has already been responsible for putting thousands of americans out of work, and it's on track to eliminate thousands more jobs if it isn't repealed. and then there is the obamacare 30-hour workweek rule which is eliminating hours and reducing wages for thousands of american workers. and the numerous obamacare regulations that are making it difficult for small businesses to hire new workers. madam president, as democrats
are now realizing, obamacare was a big mistake. what democrats should have done, as the senior senator from new york admits, was focus on creating jobs and opportunities for middle-class families. the recent gallup poll listing the overall health of the economy as america's top economic concern was just the latest poll in which americans have listed jobs and the economy among their main worries. the democrats have spent years ignoring the need for jobs and focusing on their own political priorities. as the senior senator from new york said, and i quote -- with democrats focused on health care, the average middle-class person thought the democrats aren't paying enough attention to me." end quote. well, madam president, that average middle-class person was right. in a few short weeks, republicans will take over the senate. we will be running things very differently. our first priority will be passing legislation to create jobs and opportunities for american workers.
a significant part of that will be working to undo the damage obamacare has done to the economy. we will work to repeal the medical device tax and restore the 40-hour workweek. madam president, i hope democrats will join us, and i have a feeling that many of them will. as we have seen opposition to these damaging obamacare provisions, it's not limited to republicans. democrats have joined us before to attempt to address these issues, and i look forward to working with those same democrats and others in the new congress. and as for the president, i hope he will finally admit that his law is hurting americans and join us in undoing the damage. fortunately, his actions so far have not demonstrated much openness to cooperation or any sign that he understands that the american people are calling for a new era in washington. madam president, democrats have spent the past several years focusing on the priorities of the far left wing of their party instead of the american people's priorities.
the economy and jobs. that's what the american people have been saying over and over, that they want their elected leaders to be focused on, and i hope in the new congress that we'll start or mark the start of a new era in which democrats join republicans to help create jobs and opportunities for americans and remove obstacles to success. the american people have waited a long time for relief. it is time, madam president, for congress to give it to them. madam president, i yield the floor. mr. sanders: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from vermont. mr. sanders: madam president, it seems to me that the american people in this particular moment in our history must make a very fundamental decision, and that decision is do we continue the
status quo which includes a 40-hour decline of our middle class and a huge and growing gap between the very, very rich and everyone else, or do we fight for a bold and meaningful economic agenda that creates jobs, raises wages, protects our environment and provides health care for every american? madam president, the question of our time is whether or not we are prepared to take on the enormous economic and political power of the billionaire class, or do we continue to slide into economic and political oligarchy? that is the question which the american people must answer, and
i hope and expect that they are prepared to answer with a resounding yes and a desire to move this country in a very different direction. madam president, the long-term deterioration of the middle class, accelerated by the wall street crash of 2008, has not been a pretty picture. today we have more wealth and income inequality than any major country on earth, with the top 1% owning more wealth than the bottom 90%, with one family, the walton family of walmart, owning more wealth itself than the bottom 40%. madam president, today in the united states, we have the highest rate of childhood
poverty of any major country on earth, and we are the only major country on this planet that does not guarantee health care to all people as a right. the united states once led the world in terms of the percentage of our people who graduated college, and that in a global economy is an enormously important issue. we can't create jobs unless we have a well-educated work force. madam president, we we were oncn first place in terms of percentage of our people who gawded college. today we are in 12th place. madam president, i think as most americans understand, we once were the energy of the world in terms of the quality of our infrastructure, our roads,
bridges, waste water plants, water systems, rail, but today, as all americans know, our physical infrastructure is literally collapsing before our eyes. madam president, real unemployment today is not 5.8% 5.8% -- that is official unemployment -- but when you include those people who have given up looking for work and those people who are working part time when they want to work full time, real unemployment is 11.5%. youth unemployment is 18.6%. and african-american youth unemployment is over 30%. today millions of americans are working longer hours for lower wages. madam president, when we try to understand why the american people are angry, it's important to understand that in inflation
adjusted for dollars, the median male worker, that male worker right in the middle of the economy, earned $783 less last year than he made 41 years ago. $783 less than he made 41 years ago, despite all of the increases in productivity. madam president, the median woman worker made $1,300 less last year than she earned in 2007. since 1999, median middle-class family has seen its income go down by almost $5,000 after adjusting for inflation, now earning less than it did 25 years ago. why are the american people angry? that's why.
a huge increase in productivity. all of the global economy, and yet the median family income in america is $5,000 less than it was in 1999. madam president, it seems clear to me that the american people must demand that congress and the white house start protecting the interests of working families and not just wealthy campaign contributors. we need federal legislation to put unless of our unemployed workers back to work, to raise wages and to make certain that all americans have the health care and education they need for healthy and productive lives. in other words, we must have a vision for the future that talks about what this nation can become, in terms of jobs, in
terms of income, in terms of education and in terms of health care. madam president, let me just very briefly describe some of the major initiatives that i intend to fight for in the new congress, and there are 12 major initiatives which if enacted will transform the middle class of this country. number one, we need a major investment to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure, our roads, bridges, water systems, waste water plants, airports, railroads, schools, et cetera. it has been estimated that the cost of a bush-cheney war in iraq, a war we should never have gotten into in the first place, will end up costing us some $3 trillion. madam president, if we invested $1 trillion in rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure, we
could create 13 million decent-paying jobs and make this country more efficient and more productive. we need to invest in infrastructure, not in war. two, the united states must lead the world in reversing climate change and making certain that this planet is habitable for our children and grandchildren. we must transform our energy system away from fossil fuels and into energy efficiency and sustainable energies. and when we do that, make our transportation system energy efficient, make our homes more energy efficient, move to wind, solar, geothermal, biomass, we can also create a significant number of good-paying jobs. three, we need to develop new economic models to increase job
creation and productivity. instead of giving huge tax breaks to corporations which ship our jobs to china and other low-wage countries, we need to provide assistance to workers who want to purchase their own businesses by establishing worker-owned cooperatives. study after study shows that when workers have an ownership stake in the businesses in which they work, productivity goes up, absenteeism goes down, and employees are much more satisfied with their jobs. four, union workers who are able to collectively war be a gain for higher wages and benefits earn substantially more than nonunion workers. today corporate opposition to union organizing makes it extremely difficult for workers to join a union. we need legislation which makes it clear that when a majority of
workers sign cards in support of a union, they can form that union. five, the current federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour is a starvation wage. we need to raise the minimum wage to a living wage. no one in this country who works 40 hours a week should live in poverty. six, women workers today earn 78% of what their male counterparts make. we need pay equity in this country, equal pay for equal work. seven, madam president, since 2001 we have lost more than 60,000 factories in this country and more than 4.9 million decent-paying manufacturing jobs. we once led the world in terms of our manufacturing capability, yet in state after
state we have seen significant losses in manufacturing jobs and when people walk into a store, it is harder and harder for them to purchase products made in the united states of america. madam president, the time is now for us to end our disastrous trade policies that's nafta, cafta, permanent normal trade relations with china -- because these policies simply enable corporate america to shut down plants in this country and move to china and other low-wage countries. madam president, we need to end the race to the bottom, and to develop trade policies which protect the interests of american workers and not just multinational corporations. american companies should start investing in this country and not simply in china and other
low-wage countries. point number eight -- in today's highly competitive global economy, millions of americans are unable to afford the higher education they need in order to get good-paying jobs. 40, 50 years ago we had a situation in this country where some of the great public universities of our nation, the university of california, city university of new york, state colleges all over america were virtually tuition-free, and anybody could go to those schools, regardless of the income of their families. today, for many, many families and young people, the cost of higher education is simply unaffordable, and either students choose not to go to college because they can't afford it, or they come out of school deeply in debt, a debt fastened on their shoulders for
decades. madam president, quality education in america from child care to higher education must be affordable for all. without a high quality and affordable educational system, we will be unable to compete globally in the international economy and our standard of living will continue to decline. we have got to invest in education. the idea that we are laying off teachers is completely absurd. point number nine -- the function of banking, the banking system, is to facilitate the flow of capital into the productive and job-creating economy. that's what banking is supposed to be. people save, people put money in banks, that money he goes out into the economy so people can buy homes, create
businesses. financial institutions cannot be an island unto themselves, standing as huge profit centers outside of the real productive economy. in other words, banking must be a means to an end, improving society, creating jobs, providing people with decent housing, not simply a means by which financial institutions make more and more profit. madam president, today six huge wall street financial institutions have assets equivalent to 61% of our gross domestic product, close to $10 trillion in six financial institutions. these institutions underwrite more than half the mortgages in this country and more than two-thirds of the credit cards.
the greed, recklessness and illegal behavior of major wall street firms plunged this country into the worst financial crisis since the 1930's, and every day we open up a newspaper -- our newspapers and we see another major banking scandal. the truth of the matter, madam president, is that these financial institutions on wall street are too powerful to be reformed. they have too much money, they have too much wealth, they have too many lobbyists, they make too much in campaign contributions. our goal must be to break them up. they have too much power, too much wealth, they must be broken up so that our financial institutions begin to serve the needs of the american people and not simply the c.e.o.'s and the stockholders of wall street
firms. number 10, the united states must join the rest of the industrialized world and recognize that health care is a right of all and not a privilege. i think many americans don't know that we are the only major country on earth that does not guarantee health care to all people as a right, and yet within this dysfunctional health care system, we today have 40 million people who have no health insurance, we have more people who are underinsured, we have millions of people with high premiums, high deductibles, and at the end of all of that we end up spending almost twice as much per capita on health care as do the people of any other major country on earth. madam president, the time is now for us to declare that health care is a right of all people, an privilege. we need to pass a medicare for
all single pair system. -- single payer system. point number 11. madam president, millions of senior citizens in this country live in poverty and we have the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country on earth. i hear a lot of discussion on the part of my republican colleagues and some democrats that we should be cutting social security. well, i strongly disagree. in my view, we must strengthen and expand social security, not cut it. and that is terribly important, especially at a time when more and more seniors are slipping into poverty and we have millions of seniors who are trying to survive on $12,000, $13,000, $14,000 a year, making decisions every single day about whether they buy the medicine they need, whether they heat their homes
adequately, or they buy the food that they need. we should not be cutting these programs, we should be expanding these programs. the 12th and last point that i would make as part of an agenda that we builds america and rebuilds our middle class, is at a time of massive wealth and income inequality we need a productive tax system based on ability to pay. it is not acceptable that every single year we have major profitable corporations who pay nothing in federal income taxes, and it is not acceptable that we have corporate c.e.o.'s in this country who make millions of dollars every year who enjoy an effective tax rate which is lower than their secretaries'. that is grotesquely unfair and it must be changed. further, we have got to address
the disgrace that every single year our country loses over $1 billion in revenue because corporations and the wealthy stash their money in offshore tax havens all over the world. the time is long overdue for real tax reform which says to the wealthy, which says to large, profitable corporations that they have got to begin paying their fair share of taxes. so let me conclude, madam president, by getting back to the point that i made in the beginning of my remarks. and that is that we are in a pivotal moment in american history. the very, very rich are becoming richer, the middle class is disappearing, and today we have more people living in poverty than at almost any time in american history.
and with the health of the billionaire class, they are exercising their power politically because citizens united, a disastrous supreme court decision, has given them the power to buy elections and control to a significant degree our political process. and we as a nation have ultimately got to make a decision about whether or not we are going to continue that process, where the middle class continues to decline and the very, very richest people become richer, or whether we are prepared -- and this is not easy stuff -- to stand together to take on the billionaire class and their greed and to say enough is enough, this country does not just belong to the top 1% or the top .1% but it belongs to all of us, and i hope very much that the american people make the right choice because if they do, we can bring about a
transformation of this country so the government begins to work for all of the people and not just the billionaires on top. and with that, madam president, i would yield the floor but before i do that i've been asked to make the statement that i have seven unanimous consent requests for committees to meet during today's session of the senate, they have the approval of the majority and minority leaders, i ask unanimous consent that these requests be agreed to and that these requests be printed in the record, and with that i yield the floor. the presiding officer: without objection. under the previous order, the under the previous order, the
>> the hill is reported of the potential nominee for defense secretary saying president obama appears ready to nominate former deputy defense secretary ashton carter. he is considered among the top candidates. recently other top candidates have removed their names from consideration including homeland security secretary jeh johnson, michele flournoy and senator jack reed of rhode island. the white house. the white house is no one else has yet been scheduled but we will keep you updated on the c-span networks. >> and company retired as abc
news white house correspondent on her over 40 years of covering the white house and the administration of gerald ford, through barack obama. >> we watched him listen to a group of second grade go through their bill and i interrupted the president to whisper to him and i was stunned. i wrote it down, 9:07 a.m. nobody interrupts the president. the president stood and said he had to go and he went to a side room and then we heard, we discovered that it was two planes down. two plane crashes in new york. ari fleischer came out to the pool, the parking lot outside the school to stay with you. the president will come and talk. i said no. they are our live cameras in the cafeteria. he did want to scare the children that he did go into the cafeteria. he said it's an apparent terrorist attack. i must return to washington. we raced to the plane. we were pushed the board
quickly. the door slammed and the pentagon was hit. >> sunday night at eight eastern and pacific on c-span's q&a. >> last night the candidates in louisiana's u.s. senate race runoff held a debate. mary landrieu is trying to defend her seat against republican congressman bill cassidy. the election is saturday and both the cook and the rothenberg political report's list race as leans republican. in just five days louisiana voters head to the polls in the runoff election for the u.s. senate. >> tonight the two remaining candidates. now live from the studios of adobe isv come here's tonight's moderator. >> moderator: getting a thanks
for joining us for the nation's final u.s. senate debate between senator mary landrieu and congressman bill cassidy. we have a panel of questioners tonight from already come stations across louisiana. greg meriwether of debbie afb in baton rouge, cynthia arsenault in lake charles, and doug warner in shreveport. during the debate we'll take questions from twitter, join the conversation and tweak your questions using hashtag for final debate. we encourage you to tweak, give youyour commentary. unc tweets flash on the bottom of the screen at hashtag the final debate. for tonight format the candidates have one minute to respond to questions at a moderate discretion. there is a follow-up with no set time limit. we begin with the candidates specific questions, one for each, and i look of the draw tonight that goes first to senator landrieu. senator, you may preclude a you'd like to talk about congressman cassidy's work but i must to you when i hear from the
castor supporters, the feedback i get is make sure you ask berlin to about her travel and the idea that you had reported almost $35,000 in expenses for air travel, private charter planes that were billed to the senate office instead of your congressional campaign. going back to 2002 when the rules changed. why isn't there an inconsistency in judy many the congressman bring all 63 months of records for his work at lsu when we don't know how you traveled in the first six years of office? landrieu: thank you for the question. i thank the panel for hosting us in this very important debate. i brought the records tonight for the time that was not given just a few weeks ago. i have turned over all the records. it was a bookkeeping error. i have taken full responsibility for it and it has been completely repaid. the very big difference is that congressman cassidy has had on
his own payroll for the last six years entering into an agreement with one of our hospitals and there's also been a record of the work that he has done. that is a very serious matter. so one was a bookkeeping error which i took full responsibility and have turned over a complete set of records with this document tonight. any of the situation is a congressman that has taken over $20,000 a year in addition to his congressional salary, and it maybe even more than that if they paid for his medical malpractice insurance without reporting it properly, without turning over any records. i don't think from what i can see he brought them tonight. i think that's a shame transfer we don't allow props for one thing in fairness. let me ask a quick follow-up. landrieu: our records propst? than i should have brought this thing to give to you. >> moderator: the $5500 for
one charter flight from new orleans to lake charles, that's one specific charter that jumped out at people. if that happened in the business world, most businesses people would been left out of the if it suggested having that kind of expense charge to accompany. landrieu: first of all every senator and congressman gets a budget. we can allocate our budget within those guidelines as we see fit. these were legal expenses. the only difference is it was a bookkeeping error of misallocation. that is a far cry from the congressman that is padding his own payroll. >> moderator: has the scrutiny -- will get to the other issue. has the scrutiny this game in the race change to be at all about how quickly you arrange for a charter? landrieu: first of all i will rethink it of course because of this. but also i want you to know that nothing was illegal. it was a bookkeeping error, not
allocating it. i have fully reported it. i take full responsible and to turn over all records. i hope tonight we will get to a much more serious matter in this debate. this story just broke this week. i would've talked about it before but the story just broke this week of my opponent who has shown himself or told us he was a doctor for the poor, but he is not a doctor for the poor. is a doctor for himself therefore let's get to that in. congressman cassidy come after your election as we will establish there was enrichment with lsu and we would continue working and teaching medical students, residents at $20,000 a year, seven half hours the week. lsu has produced timesheets for 63 months -- excuse me, 16 of the 63 months you worked about say they can't find the almost other 50. on more than a dozen locations it reflects hours in the click on days when there were votes in
washington. address if you would the questions this is race about how you could be in two places at once. cassidy: simple. the charges are actually false. my direct supervisor and i have made multiple comments regarding this. i would note the landrieu camp whenever they can take these comments and twist them around. i am proud of the work i've done with lsu. flying to d.c. encoding that evening. now, that's it. the work i've done with lsu, teaching medical students actually benefits the poor and uninsured. there's an irony here. senator landrieu justifies her vote for obama could do it without a past without her by saying she's for the poor in the uninsured. even though demonstrably obamacare has hurt the economic prospects of the poor. now, that said, there's also this issue of transparency. we suddenly get the record but
actually it was illegal with the senator had done. it actually violated the senate ethics laws. either question to finish up with. is what i was doing benefited the poor in the uninsured, who didn't senator landrieu when she is those taxpayer dollars to pay for private charter jets to a campaign event, who did not benefit? >> moderator: let me follow up. i'll tell you what. we can't respond at this time. we do have questions that you can ask one another later but in fairness i think we better stick with the format. at me follow up though, caucus been. this was supposed to be documented. did you personally signed these timesheets? and the other question i have is, given louisiana's sort of colorful political history if you will, is it understandable there would be some questions raised about, you know, some potential for abuse in some cases if they were not safeguarded when a congressman
was employed by entity a state government? cassidy: senator landrieu pointed out, they begin to push the story out this past week. they've done whatever they could to keep the story alive. so clearly senator landrieu is going to try to make this a story even though i'm sitting there and helping the poor and the nature. my boss and i have made multiple statements about this in the public. >> moderator: let me interrupt. did you sign the timesheets? cassidy: i did try for it looked as though it might've been people, there was conjectured to design all of them. but you were there . cassidy: doctor's handwriting transform speak directly to the question of -- let me ask you this. if you're elected to the senate, would you like to be employed by lsu? would your leave of absence -- would you like to go back to lsu? cassidy: i love treating patients. i love teaching. i'm the only one in the lsu
system. there are other sort gastroenterologist but i'm going to us that particular subspecialty. so i bring value but it always serve at the will of my employer. if i get the opportunity to teach and to continue to treat the poor and the uninsured as i have for the last 25 years in the charity hospital system, i would like to continue. >> moderator: i have a feeling we will revisit it but we had to go on to a first question from greg meriwether. >> thank you, guys. nuts talk about the pain-capable act. congressman cassidy, start with you. to protect an unborn child of 20 weeks. proponents say at the point child begins to feel pain of these proposed the bill would feel the pain of an abortion from the procedure. you supported the bill. are there any provision for exceptions what you think that an abortion should be considered? and also at what point should the government kind of draw the line?
cassidy: what of the clear distinction industries is i'm pro-life and senator landrieu is pro-choice. i do wonder% right to life and she gets as you. she's 100% for the pro-abortion groups and i get a zero. this is a very kind of my gosh, there's a clear choice in this campaign. as regard to the pain-capable act, i know that child is born week 20 can survive outside the womb. is evidence that child at the week is able to feel a 20 weeks is able to feel pain. at that point we can all agree whether we are pro-choice or pro-life that is a life and should be saved and it shouldn't be aborted. i am pro-life spent it would be aborted? cassidy: of course. if the mother's life is at risk i am pro-life and that is one of the choices senator landrieu gets the zero from. >> senator landrieu, you're quoted in politico as saying 20 weeks not the norm for a child to live outside of a hospital.
do you support abortion at 20 weeks? landrieu: i do not support abortion, period. i think it's tragic. i do not believe the government, however, should make those decisions. i think abortion in almost every case is immoral. i believe that the government should not make the choice. that is why i fall more under the label of pro-choice and pro-life. these labors -- labels on upper acted because i think the person, family, doctor in consultation with the doctor or god should make that decision. my record has been misconstrued. i am the co-chair of the adoption caucus. i have two adopted children. we both have adopted children, and the congressman knows this very well. we both have adopted children and i support adoption. i do not promote abortion and never have. he should also know as a doctor that 20-26 weeks is a very, very
fragile time for a child. but the answer is i don't want bill cassidy in the hospital room. i don't want the government and hospital room come and they sure don't want congress and hospital room. the mother, father and the priest should be in that hospital room. >> trifled let's go to cynthia arceneaux. >> we've all witnessed the events of ferguson, missouri, unfold before our very eyes. this has brought the issue of race relations center stage in america. what are your feelings on race relations? specifically i'd like for you to answer, would you say things are better, worse, or the same? and what do you think needs to be done to bring about true healing? senator landrieu, let's start with your response. landrieu: that's a very important question because our country is built on multiethnic unity for us to be the strongest
country, diversity is a strength, not a weakness. i actually think that race relations have deteriorated a bit in this country. i think we have to continue to work on it decade after decade, generation after generation. what happened in ferguson was a tragedy for michael brown's family as well as for the officer and his family. so i hope the ferguson committee will continue to talk, review police actions come and continue to dialogue. this country's strength is our diversity. it's not our weakness. i think we need to do a better job as a nation trying to understand each other and work together. >> congressman cassidy, would you say things are better, worse or the same? cassidy: compared to when we had jim crow laws, clearly it's better. new orleans which is profoundly african-american has a white mayor. baton rouge parish which is part of matt white has a black city parish president.
so we have made strides in terms of acceptance and understanding of others. is a more to do? of course. the parable of the good samaritan is about the good samaritan reaching across racial and religious divides to create unity with another person who is in need. that sure should inspire us to attempt to reach across and make things better. senator landrieu made a statement that we somehow, barack obama was not being of the ashman viewed as a vote because when the history of racism in the south. i think just because you disagree with the president doesn't make you a racist. when senator landrieu by implication said we were sexist and racist, she's been elected to public office since often college. i think we've made great progress. is there more to do? of course there is more to do. ..
landrieu: i was asked why is president obama so unpopular in the state. i said he was unpopular among some people in the state because of his energy policies, and i went on to explain he is not for keystone, i am. he shut down oil and gas drilling. we are all for it. and then i said those words. he has spun them out of context for his own political benefit, and i'm not the only one tired of listening to his rhetoric. >> moderator: we, time -- cassidy: i think people can look at the videos themselves and
make their own decision. we don't have to have a he said/she said. you can just look at the video, and you can see what she said. >> moderator: all right. let's go on to doug warner from ksla. >> good to see you both again. congressman cassidy, i'll begin with you, the way i'll phrase it for you, with your tv, newspaper and radio ads you've basically run a campaign against president obama, yet he'll only be there for a fraction of your term if you are elected, it'll be another four years after he's out of office. what do you want to do with this job, if elected? cassidy: yeah, continue what i've already done. keystone xl pipeline, i was able to get the cassidy bill through the house on a bipartisan basis where it passed and went through to the senate where, unfortunate, senator landrieu could not get it passed. whatever senator landrieu says, you can talk to my patients, i've been working for the last 25 years. i would like to repeal and
replace obamacare with something that actually works for people instead of working against them. i've worked in the public institution as a physician. i'd like to be on the veterans' committee so i can look at the v.a. system, bring in my expertise as a physician working in the public hospital system. how can we give power to the patient and not leave it with the bureaucrat or an administrator as both obamacare does and as the v.a. system does? using my life experience to benefit all americans. >> moderator: senator landrieu. landrieu: it's interesting that he would want to be on the veterans committee, because he voted against the veterans hospital when he was a senator at, in louisiana. he voted no against the medical complex. and now he has the nerve to say that he supports the veterans hospital? let me say one more thing. i don't believe he will be elected, but if he is, he will be doing a lot more than fighting president obama. he will be fighting subpoenas, because he padded his payroll.
he took money without accounting for it. and he doesn't have a supervisor, and he did not sign the sheets which you know, john, because you have them. he does not have the signatures, he did not account for his work, and he will not turn over his records. i mean, this is a real serious issue. and he just will talk about everybody else's record but his own. and so, you know, whatever happens in this debate, these questions must be answered. cassidy: if i can respond to that. >> moderator: please. cassidy: the truthfulness can be judged by this: since i voted against the v.a. hospital in new orleans, i wasn't in congress -- lapp lan the legislature. cassidy: i'm sorry, i'm speaking, please. i wasn't in congress when that was approved. what senator landrieu's referring to was the lsu hospital, which i thought was too big. the v.a. hospital was totally a different issue. so you can judge the truthfulness based upon that. but i'll go back to the question i asked earlier, if i had been
working to benefit the poor and the uninsured, we can ask who benefited, the poor and the uninsured. senator landrieu, when she was taking taxpayer-paid-for charter flights to campaign events, who benefited there? senator landrieu? >> moderator: address that point, that it was a vote not so much against the veterans hospital as, for example, what david david vitter felt -- landrieu: that is a part of the complex. when he was a legislator. i didn't want say when he was in congress. and now he shows up to take credit for helping veterans. i helped to lead the fight with charles boustany from the western part of our state to build two new clinics from lafayette and lake charles. but, john, i really want to get back to this issue of truthfulness. >> moderator: we're going to have an opportunity in a minute for you to ask a question of one another. let me bring up a pie chart, if we could, of how we spend our money in america. this is, these numbers will
change slightly. this is president obama's proposed 2015 budget. social security 20%, defense 19, unemployment 16, medicare and medicaid are 21. i've soon estimates a bit higher than that, but the point is when you get to what we think of as the rest of the government, nasa, the cdc, the park service, it's 11 president or so -- 11% or so. there were times when the deficits were going crazy that this little portion here didn't equal the deficit. you could have wounded out what we think of as the government, and you wouldn't have balanced the budget. social security and entitlements, you have talked, senator, a lot about social security. but if we don't cut benefits or raise taxes or do something, we're on a path where these entitlements will devour the economy and the budget, aren't we? lapp lan well, first of all, let me please respond that my opponent and many of the republicans have decided they don't want to fix that because they want to continue to give tax cuts to people that makeover
a million dollars. they want to find a space on that pie chart to cut out for the koch brothers and their friends and continue to give them tax cuts and not pay for it and run up the debt. they also brought us into two wars that they put on the credit card. so the republican party is just as much at fault, and we both need to work together. now, what my opponent wants to do is give tax breaks to millionaires and raise the social security age to 70. i'm not going to do that. it will hurt people in this state. people cannot work til they're 70 years old laying concrete, paving over highways, building bridges, you know, lifting heavy objects even inside a hospital or a restaurant. they cannot do i. he -- do it. he voted for it four times. i'm not going to do it. there are other ways to solve this problem, and let me say the annual deficit under president obama has been reduced by 50%. not the debt -- >> moderator: but isn't that partly, isn't that partly because of the deficit ballooned so greatly in his first year?
landrieu: not necessarily, no. no, it has not. the stimulus package lifted it up, but it has still gone down over time because of a revived economy and because of good budgeting. now, we do have a debt problem, but raising the social security age to 70 while he pads -- >> moderator: going to get congressman cassidy to respond. all right, congressman. cassidy: working for 25 years in the public hospital system i had many patients, and the only thing they had was their medicare and social security. my mother's 92. she lives with me, or 91. i understand the importance of these safety net programs. my commitment to you is to work to preserve and strengthen these programs. now, the problem is, is that obamacare -- which senator landrieu voted for, would not have passed without her -- cut a $716 billion out of medicare to spend it on obamacare. we've got to do something or else medicare and social security will go bankrupt. and when that happens, when that happens, the benefits that you
are receiving will decrease by as much as 25%. now, there's things we can do. louisiana's own senator 20 some years ago came up with a plan for medicare which on a bipartisan basis has been brought forward again. if you want to keep medicare exactly as you have it now, you can, but if you go into this new program, the cbo estimates or the congressional budget office, it saves money for the beneficiary, and it prolongs the life of the trust fund. i will preserve your benefits. >> moderator: i ghei you both leeway there, but you said you wanted to respond. landrieu: i wanted to respond. the $750 billion document or number that he suggested was supported by both republicans and democrats. the money was waste and inefficiency. it went back into the medicare program. as he knows for a fact to strengthen medicare. it still does not excuse his wanting to solve that problem,
john, not on the backs of the koch brothers, not on the backs of billionaires, but on the backs of the poor and the elderly raising the social security age to 70. it's wrong. there are other things that we can do. cassidy: let me, can i respond to that? >> moderator: certainly. cassidy: it's a matter of fact that the money was not put back into the social security, into the medicare trust fund. my team tweet that out right now. it doesn't have to be kind of like he's not telling the truth and i am. we'll tweet it out and you can see it, just like that video of chuck todd. >> moderator: let me ask you this, and maybe we can try to do this as quickly as possible. give me your view of what tax reform, just a rough outline of what tax reform might look like. who would pay more and who would pay less? landrieu: it can't be revenue neutral. the revenues make up a percentage of the federal government at the lowest rate since world war ii. it's 15%. when our budget was balanced, it was about 21 or 22%, the last time we had a balanced budget.
that's the problem with republicans. they continue to cut, cut, cut programs for everyone, for the low income, for the middle class and then turn around and give tax cuts to the wealthy. we have to do both. we have to administer money to the overall pot -- add more money to the overall pot, and then we have to take out waste, fraud and abuse and do it efficiently, not by sequester. >> moderator: congressman, the senate says we don't have enough money. cassidy: she supports the president 97% of the time, she's already voted to raise taxes by $1.6 trillion already -- >> moderator: give me, if you would, your version of tax reform. cassidy: republicans have proposed and what the president's bipartisan debt commission suggested is that we do away with exemptions and loopholes, we broaden the amount of money that's being taxed, but we lower the rates. and by so doing, you actually lower rates but create more revenue. that's from the president's own
bipartisan debt commission. that's a good idea. landrieu: i didn't say to completely only solve the problem by raising revenues. every group, independent group that's looked at this says it has to be a combination of some additional revenues by shutting down offshore loopholes, which he supports, and many people in the republican party. you can also take out waste and fraud and abuse and then cut the budget as well as raising revenues, john. i did not say we'd solve it by adding money alone. >> moderator: well, congressman cassidy, wrap this up. cassidy: what would you cut? lapp lan there are a number of things we can reduce, fraud in medicare was something that john mccain and your leaders in the republican party supported. that was a bipartisan effort to try to take out some washington and fraud and abuse, put -- some waste and fraud and abuse, put it back in the program and strengthen it. but i am not going to stand here and allow them to give tax break after tax break after tax break
for people that makeover a million dollars a year and then put the burden on the people in louisiana who have incomes of 50, 60, 70, $80,000. it's not -- cassidy: if i may respond to that? senator landrieu voted for $1.6 trillion in new taxes over the last six years supporting barack obama 97% of the time. i've opposed all those taxes. you can disease for yourself who is sticking -- decide for yourself who is sticking up for the taxpayer. >> moderator: let's go to greg meriwether with a twitter question. >> will you support drug testing for welfare recipients? >> moderator: senator landrieu first. landrieu: i have voted, i think -- i have to go back and look -- for drug testing for welfare recipients. but you might also want to ask for drug testing for people that have, you know, special contracts or for other people that get special benefits from the government. i just don't think that, you
know, picking on welfare, the population of welfare is right and is appropriate. so if other people that get special tax breaks from the government, you know, or other subsidies from the government want to also be drug tested, i think that would be fine. but beating up on the poor is not going to solve the problems of our country. educating people, giving them access to higher education, working for jobs for the middle class. and this beating up on the poor and blaming them for the problems of the world are really, it's not right. i guess my catholic faith just really comes out. it's just not right. cassidy: how exactly would it be beating up on the poor? most people have to take a drug test before they take a job, how exactly is it beating up -- landrieu: well, look, i didn't want say i would oppose it, i just think that it has to be allocated fairly. if you're going to do that, then i'm not talking about jobs. you're talking about a
government subsidy -- >> which is basically their primary source of income, like a job. landrieu: it is, but you're comparing apples to oranges. one is a job, the other is a government subsidy. there are many people that get government subsidies, many. film industry, millionaires. so if you want to put everybody that gets a government subsidy and drug test them, fine, i don't have a problem with them. but comparing a program, a government program to a job, they're two different thicks. >> moderator: we need to get to congressman cassidy. cassidy: in the house we voted to allow states to begin pilot programs. the state would be able to put in a pilot program in which they would be able to do drug testing. there's at least some evidence out there that people who can't hold a job do go on public assistance, do get on drugs, and because they never pass a drug test, they never get off of public assistance. that is unfair to hard working taxpayers. but i will also say the doc
who's been working in the public hospital system for 25 years, i'll also say it's unfair to the person to enable, toen able them to continue -- to enable them to continue in a self-destructive lifestyle. at some point government becomes the problem. if you give a measure of accountability and you couple that with the opportunity for someone to move out of that lifestyle, you save their lives. it is not generous to the person to allow them to continue in that self-destructive lifestyle, it is generous to them to allow them to move to another level. and that requires accountability. landrieu: let me just say this, it is outrageous, outrageous to suggest that people that are receiving food supplements for their children are drug abusers. there is no evidence to suggest that that particular group of people use drugs any more than anyone else. it is outrageous rhetoric. and it is not going to solve any problems. should people be responsible in their life? yes. should wealthy people be responsible in their life?
yes. middle class and the poor. but they're beating up and demeaning a person that is just in between work or a woman who went bankrupt because she couldn't get health insurance because he wouldn't give it to her or a person in a family that should get health insurance but because he and bobby jindal said no, they have insurance for themselves and their children. they said no to 252,000 -- cassidy: can i respond to -- >> moderator: i need to get a response -- landrieu: so then they go to get food stamps ask now he wants to drug he's them? it's outrageous. cassidy: i didn't want say that. lapp lan yes, you did. socialcassidy: when i say the he voted to allow states to do a pilot program in which automobile-bodied adults, able-bodied adults would have the level of this accountability, we begin to hear
all these terrible things about what republicans are about. no, we're trying to protect hard working taxpayers. i'm all for caring for the poor, folks. i've been doing it for 25 years in the charity hospital system and will continue to do so. i'm very aware of their struggles. >> moderator: we have to move on. let's go to cynthia arceneaux. >> congressman cassidy, i want to backtrack a little bit to the affordable care act. there's some parts of obamacare are popular with many voters including coverage for pre-existing conditions and also the ability to keep your student who is 26 or under on your health insurance. if the affordable care act is ever repealed, would you at least be willing to support those provisions that are so popular? cassidy: yeah. the provision for someone who's 26 and younger to stay on their parents was actually originally a republican idea. so there are portions of the health care bill that can be
repurposed. but the underlying premise of obamacare is that government knows best, that government should be able to tell us how to live our lives. now, i have learned working in the public hospital system that when the patient has the power, the system lines up to seven the patient. but when the bureaucrat or the politician has the power, it lines up to serve the bureaucrat or the politician. a good example of that is the phoenix v.a. where allegedly administrators were cooking the books so that they would continue to get their bonuses even though veterans were dying prematurely. the simple premise of obamacare is that government can tell you what benefits to have, therefore, how much to pay. i spoke to a family in ham only, their people -- hammond, their premium has gone from $12,000 to $21,000, and now they have a 20% increase upon that. they are insurance poor because obamacare says the government knows best. government does not know best. landrieu: let me respond to that. >> moderator: cynthia has a slightly different version -- >> i do have a different version
for senator landrieu, and it's touching on the topic that congressman cassidy just started on. on the other side of that, there are a lot of people who feel that they are now forced into a situation where they're overinsured, and they're paying for coverage that they don't necessarily need or want. what do you say to those people whose premiums have gone through the roof? landrieu: well, first of all, let me say this: no law is perfect. i have said that i voted for this affordable care act because it was much better than the system that we had. which was government,s, including the federal government, having a soaring, rising, never-ending costs and people dropping insurance because they couldn't afford it. that was happening before the affordable care act. so what i've said is i voted for the affordable care act. it should be improved. but the congressman misleads everyone when he says this is a government-run system. it is a private sector,
public/private partnership where people can choose the insurance in places that it has been put in place by republican governors and democratic governors and the health care has been expanded. it is working. for the first time in our country from independent sources, costs are coming down. and in louisiana, cynthia, what he doesn't say is 88% of the people in our state qualify for a subsidy. they're paying an average of $89 a month. so it is a perfect law? no. but it's much better than people taking medical bankruptcy or mothers having to choose between getting a mammogram and taking care of their breast cancer or feeding their children or paying rent. >> moderator: okay. landrieu: it is an awful system that he supports -- >> moderator: all right, let me -- your time has expired. congressman. cassidy: yeah. gallup had a poll today because under obamacare the deductibles are so high, an individual can have a deductible of $6,000 that they found in this gallup poll, you can google it, that people
are forgoing needed care now more than before obamacare. get that. obamacare passed, gallup's poll out today -- and we can tweet that -- presumably these deductibles, that's what's proposed in the article, they cannot afford it. but it is a policy that if you don't take, you're going to be fined. the government is going to tell you what you have to have, how much you have to pay and if you don't get that policy, 1% of your income or a set amount of dollars will be taken from you. that is government-run -- >> moderator: hold on one second. we're up against the gun a little bit. i'll give you 30 seconds to respond, senator. landrieu: i was? sleeve port -- i was in shreveport the other day and a woman hugged me and said i want to say thank you. for the first time in my life, i have -- and my five children, and i've been working here for 12 or 15 years -- have insurance policy. i only pay $159 a month.
so for some people it's working very well. do we have to fix it, can we tweak it? yes. but all he's voted for is repeal 50 times. we need to fix it, not repeal it, and i am proud to have tried to help everyone, the poor, the middle class and the wealthy, get insurance. particularly because he and bobby jindal closed the public hospital. >> moderator: let's move on to doug warner. >> it's been widely reported that america's infrastructure is crumbling, namely highways and bridges. in fact, i believe it's one out of every nine bridges structurally deficient. hopefully, you didn't drive over one on the way here tonight. i say that because louisiana is $12 billion behind in bridge and roadway repairs. and i get that from senator robert addly, the senate transportation committee chair. the primary source is the gasoline tax that hasn't been raised since 1993. do we need to raise this tax, and if not, where does the money come from to fix this problem? and we begin with senator
landrieu. landrieu: first of all, one of the bills i've already passed that will fix some of the problems at least in louisiana is the gulf of mexico energy security act which for the first time gives louisiana a portion of offshore oil and gas revenues that are used to secure our coast, to rebuild our marsh which is eroding at an alarming rate and can be used for energy infrastructure. so i've thought about this a long time and tried to bring and have been successful in bringing money to louisiana. we should look at the gasoline tax. i'm not prepared to say raise it tonight. but additional funding has to be brought in to fix this infrastructure. but let me tell you what $800 million is laying on the table right now which my opponent won't vote for, and that is the marketplace fairness act. just collecting the sales tax on online purchases that the chamber of commerce, the business council, the shopping centers, main street, small businesses are put at a definite disadvantage because of taxes not being collected. so if you're looking for income,
if you're looking for income -- which he's probably not going to support any of because he just wants to talk about infrastructure but do nothing about it -- if you're looking for income, i'd suggest -- >> moderator: all right. your time has expired. let me go to congressman cassidy. cassidy: yeah. republicans have already proposed that we would expand drilling on the outer continental shelf, and a certain percent of those royalties we put into infrastructure. it's paying at the wellhead. now, there's a two gold to this. one, it generates dollars which would create jobs, it would also increase the amount of drilling in the outer continental shelves because states would be able to keep a portion of that money. now, the senate, the democrats in the senate oppose the bill, and they didn't want drilling to happen off the atlantic coast, for example. unfortunately, some of those who led the charge are people whom senator landrieu's given a substantial amount of campaign contributions towards. over the last six or seven
years, senator landrieu has given $400,000 in campaign contributions to people like robert menendez who have led the charge against drilling in the outer continental shelf. if we can pass that, dedicate some of the royalties to building highways, we can create jobs and build highways. landrieu: can i respond to robert menendez and clear his name, please? [laughter] robert menendez does not support drilling off the coast of new jersey, and if he's waiting for some people in new york and new jersey to build our highways, we'll be waiting a long time. do you know what bob menendez did do? he led the fight to save 450,000 people from having their insurance rates go through the sky. so you should thank senator menendez and not criticize him for doing something that your leadership wouldn't do. cassidy: can i respond to that? >> moderator: please. cassidy: yeah, he got passed in the senate the grimm-cassidy amendment which fixed flood insurance so premiums would not go through the roof.
i do thank senator menendez, he used my bill to save you money. secondly, i can say he's also trying to ban drilling off of the entire atlantic coast. not just new jersey and new york, but also virginia. virginians want that drilling in the ocf. it creates jobs and money. >> moderator: we've reached the point where we come to a question from each of the candidates to one another. and by luck of the draw, that comes first from congressman cassidy to senator landrieu. cassidy: oh, senator landrieu, recently you said before that you would vote for obamacare again tomorrow. jonathan gruber, who's been described as the architect of obamacare -- the guy that wrote it -- recently said on several videos that he considered the american people stupid as they wrote the law in such a way as to raise taxes on the middle class, basically forcing people out of the policies that they were told they could keep if they wished. and he just said just credit it to the stupidity of the american voter. two things.
first, when did you know that mr. gruber and the obama administration had written this so as to deceive the american people, and now that you do know it, would you still vote for obamacare again tomorrow? landrieu: i would say to dr. cassidy if he didn't have this issue to talk about, he wouldn't have any issue to talk about. that's all he's talked about this whole campaign. let me just say again this law is not perfect, it needs to be fixed, it needs to be improved, but it is better than the system that we had. and mr. gruber was not the first person, mitt romney, the presidential candidate for the republican party, instituted a version of the affordable care act in massachusetts. the affordable care act was modeled after a heritage foundation report and the full implementation of the massachusetts plan. and it is proven to work. it's not working in louisiana because bobby jindal and bill cassidy are standing in the way every step and every day. but it is working in arkansas,s
it is working in california, it is working in new york. and the saddest thing is that our state, the people of our state who need it the most, who are poorer than connecticut and new york, has to pay for everybody else to be able to go see their doctor and get -- >> moderator: your time has expired. let me let the congressman respond. cassidy: and my question was unanswered. when do you understand jonathan gruber had deliberately written this so as to deceive cbo, and now that you wrote that, would you vote for it again tomorrow? landrieu: i don't even talk to jonathan gruber. i talk to my constituents, and my constituents that i represented for 18 years were tired of not being able to afford insurance, tired of waiting eight hours in an emergency room, tired of having to choose between their rent, their food and their health care, tired of seeing people take bankruptcy. as a doctor, you should know this. it is heartbreaking to me that he would claim to be a doctor for the poor, but yet when they
come to him begging for help, he closes the door in their face, and he says no. and then he pads his own paycheck with their money. it is really, really outrageous, and i hope -- >> moderator: give the congressman a chance to respond. landrieu: i hope that people will look into this record. cassidy: so, again, mr. gruber did say they wrote it to deliberately deceive us, the american people, and i would like to know at some point now that we know that was the intent of the writers, would you still vote for it tomorrow. >> moderator: all right, let's move -- i think we've established -- landrieu: i don't agree with what mr. gruber says, i listen to my constituents. >> moderator: everybody at home can decide whose answer they liked. you have a question for congressman cassidy. cassidy: i think this is dr. double dip or something. landrieu: it is. california cast yeah, i saw your records. landrieu: did you fill out the
records that you received $20,000 for annually for five years which is over $100,000 a year, did you fill out those records? cassidy: so, first, it's not $100,000 over a year -- landrieu: it's over five years. cassidy: yeah, i filled out the records. whenever you go to clinics, you fill out charts and sign sheets. that said, i've made multiple statements regarding this, and whatever i've said has been twisted and misconstrued. again, i truly have been trying to help the uninsured and the poor for the last 25 years. never shutting the door on them, but going out of my way to help. now, senator landrieu may not care for that. again, obamacare has not been the answer for many people. and so me doing this, it's a privilege to do it. i hope to continue to do it. but if not, that's -- landrieu: john, i need to respond to that. cassidy: but that said -- landrieu: okay. cassidy: -- i would go back. if what senator landrieu wants is transparency, i'll ask the question again: when i treat
patients in the public hospital system, clearly those patients benefit. when she takes charter jets on taxpayer dime to campaign events, who is it that benefits? >> moderator: senator landrieu. landrieu: john, i want to respond. i hate to use this word, but i have to. that is a blatant lie. the sheets that we have that have been given out to the public, your signature is not on them. there are 16 that have been released to the public. his signature is not on many of them. and the signature that is on some of them is questionable my not his. -- questionably not his. the records were not completed, they were not filed. i don't know anyone in this state that works on salary for 20,000, 40,000, 100,000 that doesn't have to do the work to receive the check. there are no records. he said he would keep the records. these e-mails have been given out. it is public knowledge. so i think that you owe the taxpayers an explanation for why you took $174,000, which is your
salary, plus $20,000 plus, we believe -- and until we get all the records -- they also paid for his medical mall plaques. he's -- malpractice. he's the only doctor in the congress that has this sweetheart deal, the only one. cassidy: again, i've been making multiple comments, and my boss has as well. which senator landrieu has consistently twisted around to put in the worst possible light. but, again, for 25 years i've been caring for people in the hospital for the uninsured and poor. if we want transparency, we can say who's benefited. in my case, it's my patients. i'll return to my question for senator landrieu. when she takes charter jets that you and i pay for to campaign events, who benefited from that? >> moderator: let's move on. we'll go to cynthia arceneaux for our next question. >> let's talk straight to the heart of the american people where they live. the average american is struggling to pay the bills, to keep a roof over their heads and
put their kids through college. what are you saying to the person sitting out there right now who perhaps is watching this debate and is really struggling with those issues? congressman cassidy, let's begin with you. cassidy: oh, yeah. there's so many families that are struggling right now, we all feel for that. again, i see that in my practice. and many times they're struggling because of the obama and landrieu agenda. for example, obamacare. now, senator landrieu says i bring it up often because it is so pervasive in our society. east baton rouge parish will no longer allow a substitute teacher to work more than 30 hours, 30 hours a week because they don't want the penalties and costs associated with obamacare. lincoln parish took 400 discuss code y'all and food service workers, reduced their hours from full time to part time, and they say explicitly they cannot afford the cost and penalty of obamacare. statistically, the lowest fifth of people earning wages have
suffered under the president's health care law. but it's also his appointees. his appointees, who senator landrieu votes for every one of them, who are trying to kill our oil and gas-related jobs that bring prosperity to families. they have been struggling. the obama-landrieu agenda's been part of that problem. we need to reverse that agenda. landrieu: can i respond? as chair of the energy committee and now as ranking member if i'm reelected to the senate, i have spent a great deal of time helping to build energy jobs in this country. i believe that america is on the verge of being energy independent which is why i fought so hard for the keystone pipeline. the republican leadership could not get that up for a vote, i did. i wish it would have passed, but we got it up for a vote in the senate, and that is the leadership that i bring. and when i get back to the senate, we will pass the keystone pipeline. that is important because it will signal energy jobs for america. and these jobs are not minimum wage jobs. so the people that are
struggling at home looking for work, many of these are labor unions that supported the keystone pipeline. in addition, i support full access to colleges and colleges and universities. my opponent will not support an increase -- >> moderator: all right, your time has expired. landrieu: he has not -- ten seconds. he will not support the pell grant increase, he will not reduce loans to students. not only does he block the door to hospitals and health care as a doctor, which is reprehensible, but he also stands in the ways of colleges and universities. he's joined governor jindal $700 million -- >> moderator: all right. now your time as expired. i'm going to give my producer a coronary, but let me ask this question. the state department says the keystone pipeline is 42,000 construction jobs and 50 permanent jobs. certainly, there will be ancillary jobs. it's easier and cheaper to transport oil, but is it really that big a deal? what is the fuss about because there are, you know, directly no direct jobs in the study for
louisiana. landrieu: let me respond to that. >> moderator: i'll give you both 30 seconds on that, then we have to go. landrieu: it is a big deal. it is a symbol of america's commitment to build the infrastructure necessary. we can find all the oil and gas we want. but if we can't transport it, if we can't move it from where it's found to where it needs to be, then we're not going to be energy independent. that's why there's such a big fight about it, and it is important. >> moderator: all right, congressman. cassidy: a keystone bill did pass one chamber of congress, that was the cassidy bill that passed, and senator landrieu could not get it through the senate. my dad moved to louisiana in his late 40s. did not have a college education. he sold life insurance to people who worked at the petrochemical plants. good jobs, we need those, but it's not just the 50, it's someone like my dad who then serves those who have those jobs and creates a prosperous life for his family. >> moderator: all right. cassidy: i can tell you, it is
more than the -- it is the 40,000 construction which is huge, it is more than the 50 permanent to someone like my father. >> moderator: we have 45 seconds for the next question from doug. >> dealing with the second amendment rights, this is to the both of you, in the wake of the school shooting in newtown, connecticut, with a semiautomatic weapon was used to kill 26 students and teachers. tell me your stance on gun ownership beyond basic handgun to protect your home or a shotgun to go hunting with. i'm specifically talking about semiautomatic weapons -- >> moderator: 45 seconds, senator landrieu and no response. go ahead. landrieu: i support people's rights to have guns to protect themselves and would support some of those type of guns that were used. what i have voted for which is common sense, supported by 90% of the people even in our state, is to close the loopholes so people with mental illness or criminals cannot get easy access to those guns. i voted for what we call the
toomey-manchin amendment. it is, you know, to close a loophole that needs to be closed. i support gun ownership, and i support the second amendment. >> moderator: congressman? cassidy: yeah. i have an a+from the nra, senator landrieu has a d. people who are mentally or criminal are not going to look at the law book to see whether or not they should have a gun. that bill would have penalized the law-abiding trying to address the issue of the non-law-abiding and those who were mentally ill. the better way to address those issues are to address the issues of mental illness. and i have a passion for this. families, almost every family watching has somebody connected to their family who has a problem with mental illness. we need to respond to that with compassion, but we have to also recognize that the way to prevent sandy hook wasn't manchin-toomey, it wouldn't have stopped it. it is to address the underlying issue. >> moderator: all right. let me -- before we get to the final question, let me ask this,
a little change of pace. given louisiana's colorful history, congressman, who is your favorite louisiana political figure or public figure in louisiana from the past and why in 30 seconds? cassidy: i think mike foster did a great job. mike foster created the community college system which really gave opportunity for folks trying to move to the next level of their education. and it was also a good deal for the state, it saved some money. mike foster, who ran an honest administration, put in some good government initiatives. did i agree with everything? of course not. but on the other hand, if you look at the legacy he did at the technical and community colleges, it is a great legacy. >> moderator: senator landrieu? landrieu: i would to say, of course, wendy position who was a great -- boggs who was a great mentor. her grace and strengths has inspired women and men in office. i just think that our state has been blessed by her leadership. we miss her, and she just did a marvelous job.
>> moderator: thank you. our final question from geg meriwether of wafb. >> last time i asked both of you about a personal setback and what you did to overcome it. this time let's talk about your professional career. we'll start with you, senator landrieu. what has been your greatest mistake in your professional career, and what did you learn from it? landrieu: i have given several speeches that didn't turn out very well and one in particular that i can remember when i was a young legislator, and i have never forgotten to be prepared. and to not take anything for granted and to be prepared, and that's stayed with me, and i've tried in all of my public presentations to provide good information. it was a horrible experience. it was terribly embarrassing, and it served me well to learn to be able to be prepared, know your material and show up and debate, and that would be it. >> moderator: all right. congressman.
cassidy: yeah, i have to laugh. romans 28, all things work for the good of those who love the lord. in retrospect, maybe it wasn't a bad problem. i was at an international conference, i was supposed to speak for 20 minutes, i finished my speech in four. i was so nervous. [laughter] i sat down and everybody looked at me, and they thought, wow. needless to say, i never got invited back. it was a total bomb. on the other hand, it created a possibility to serve my state and our country in public office. so i do think maybe there was, as my career as that sort of lecturer ended, it perhaps opened up the opportunity to serve in another means. it's been an incredible privilege to serve our state as a member of congress. >> moderator: thank you both for that. before we get to closing -- mine, by the way, was almost tripping over the leg on the monitor, but thankfully i avoided that. we have reached the point where we come to a one minute closing
statement. congressman cassidy goes first. cassidy: families are struggling, and they're struggling because of the obama-landrieu agenda. obamacare is just one example. we were told we could keep our insurance if we wished, and we have not been able to. premiums have increased in some cases by 300%. now, you cannot keep the doctor, even though we were told we could. people have had their full-time job decreased to part time or even lost their job altogether. similarly, epa regulations are coming after our oil and gas jobs, that are bringing prosperity to so many of us, and then the agenda expands into taking away our second amendment rights. i'll tell you, we need -- it doesn't surprise us senator landrieu supports barack obama 97% of the time. if you want a senator who will work to repeal and replace obamacare with something that gives you the power, who will fight against these job-killing regulations and who will defend your second amendment rights,
then vote bill cassidy. i represent you. i ask for your vote this coming saturday. >> moderator: senator landrieu. landrieu: there is a clear contrast in this election. my opponent, that has spent 18 months hiding from the voters and now will not submit records of his double dipping from a public hospital where he padded his own salary at taxpayer experience, over $100,000 and will not fess up and own up. he is going to be fighting more than president obama if he gets elected, which i doubt. he will be fighting subpoenas because this is going to be under investigation. the contrast is a senator that's worked for 18 years honestly, with integrity, delivering for every part of this state. he has been very disrespectful to the president and to the office of the president. we need someone that will respect all views, go to washington and work for the betterment of this state. on energy, on education and on health care.
i ask for your vote, i thank you for your consideration. >> moderator: senator landrieu, congressman cassidy, thank you both for joining us this evening. remember, the election is this saturday. thank you for watching and good night. ♪ ♪ >> and the senate in recess now so members can attend weekly party lunches. this morning they confirmed nominees for u.s. ambassadors to argentina and awning ally and -- hungary. senators will be back at 2:15 eastern time with several confirmation votes scheduled for 4:00 including nominations to the equal employment opportunity commission and the consumer product safety commission. off the floor members continue working on a bill to found the federal government beyond december 11th when current funding runs out. we'll have more live coverage from the floor of the senate in about half an hour. and some news from "the hill" newspaper, senator rand
paul of kentucky announced he'll be running for re-election to the senate and he'll have a decision on whether or not he's running for the white house in about six months. the article quotes his statement saying he ran for office because he was alarmed by the problems facing our country. you can read more at thehill.com. and over on our companion network, c-span3, live coverage of the senate commerce committee holding a hearing on domestic violence policies in professional sports. we'll be hearing from nfl executive troy vin sent and others live at 2:30 eastern. >> anne compton, who recently retired as abc news white house correspondent, on her over 40 years covering the white house and the administrations of gerald ford through barack obama. >> we sat and we watched him listen to a group of second graders, and andy card came and interrupted the president, whispered to him, and i was stunned, 9:0 3w, andy whispers. nobody interrupts the president,
even in front of second graders. the president stood and said he, that he had to go, and he went into a side room, and then we heard, we discovered that it was two planes down, two plane crashes in new york. ari fleischer came out to the pool, we were now in the parking lot outside the school and said stay right here, the president will come talk to the pool, and i said, no, there are live cameras in the cafeteria, the president has to speak there. he didn't want to scare the children. but he did go into that cafeteria. he said it's an apparent terrorist attack and i must return to washington. we raced to the plane, we were pushed aboard quickly, the doors slammed, and then the pentagon was hit. >> sunday night at eight eastern and pacific on c-span's "q&a." >> and before the senate returns, a look at how lawmakers plan on keeping the government funded as tensions between the parties increases over the issue of immigration. >> host: and we want to welcome
back to our table congressman jim mcer the molt, sits on tennessee mcdermott. i want to begin with immigration because that's where we just left off. was it a mistake for president obama to make this move when you've got republicans upset about not wanting to work witheb him in a new congress? >> guest: the president was the most patient president i've ever seen in giving the republicans e every opportunity to deal with this issue. when they didn't, he did the right thing. he acted. >> host: we've got nine days for lawmakers to come together on a bill that keeps the government running. will democrats support any sort of short-term solution that republicans might put on the floor? >> guest: we don't run this congress. and we're going to have to support whatever they do. what's crazy about what they're doing is that they're making business go along one month at a
time. there is no business in this country that plans one month ahead. but this congress is forcing the whole economy by playing games with when things are going to happen, when they're going to have tax examinationings. we're going to have -- exemptions. we're going to have to pass tax exemptions or tax bills are going to go way up in this tax s&p. so they're going to do a tax bill and extension in the next 11 days. and the american people, the economy doesn't operate on a do you mean. it just doesn't snap into place. it takes time. so this one month at a time is, in my view, foolish. but it's all we have. what they're going to do. >> host: explain to viewers what's in this omnibus spending bill and why it's important to get it done. >> guest: well, basically, we go on a fiscal year which goes from october 1 to september 30th. so right now we have to appropriate the money to make that budget work.
we said we were going to put this much money here, this much money there, and we have to appropriate it. we have -- the appropriations stop on the 11th of december. so there'll be no money after that to run anything in this country because the republicans have held up this thing, and now they want to go another 20 days or whatever it is. they want to go to the first of the year. they want to go another 20 days, and then they're going to have this same fight again the 1st of january. it's inconceivable to me that anybody thinking would want to have the government in so much turmoil and people not knowing -- how can you run a department if you don't know how many people you're going to have? if they give you more, that's nice, but if they're going to cut you, how do you plan for what you're going to do? if you're the court system or you're the federal prisons or the national parks or you're the department of health and human services or you're the military, all these departments are
dependent on this appropriations process which is going to end on the 11th of december. >> host: do you think there could be a hit to the economy if there's a short-term solution versus a long-term one? >> guest: if you didn't know if you were going to get your paycheck after the 11th of december, you would stop spending right now. that means there will be a hit to the economy because all these departments are going to say we don't know what's coming down the line, so we're going to stop. and it is, it's a natural thing if you're running a department that you see that your funding is uncertain, then you're going to start getting conservative. and that will pull money out just at the time of year when the if you don't give money to employees today, they don't go out and buy christmas gifts. about one-third or one-quarter of the economy is spent in the month of december as people buy christmas gifts and so forth. but if you throw in a monkey wrench to that process by
pulling back money, you really are hitting the economy and making it bad for everyone. >> host: in january you start your 14th term as a member of congress. serving on the budget committee, what's our budget looking like, deficits and debt? where did that conversation go? >> guest: well, first of all, the deficit's been coming down. you don't hear anybody talking about that any more because it's coming down, it's looking good. but there are some things which we have not done and we're going to have to do and look at, and it's going to require more revenue. and i don't, i don't think that the republicans are willing to talk about revenue, so they're going to continue to cut. for instance, the national institutes of health. they used to get a hundred applications for grants for projects that needed to be done to prevent disease. and they would fund 20 of them, one out of five would be funded. now they're funding only six out of a hundred. and if you don't want health research in this country, then you just cut off the health
research. right now we have no plan to send anybody -- we can't send a vehicle up to our space lab. we have to go over to the russians and say here's their lunch, would you take it up to them, please? up to them?on't have a we don't have a space plan. that is the situation we are in. i think america is better than that here in a space program that makes sense, health care, whole areas where we should be doing nothing. what is in the: package and how will it impact americans? guest: i live in a state where we do not have income tax, so we have our federal income tax. but we do have a sales tax. we have an exemption for sales tax which dies if we do not extend that sales tax exemption, all the states for people who didn't sales tax, we have eyes
at 10%. we deduct that from our federal tax there if we lose the exemption, everybody in most states will get hit. companies that have used the money for r&d, research and development, they cannot deduct it from the task, so the tax if this extension is not made. there are all kinds of ways in which people with childcare, people who have been spending money for child care, child care they will not have it. even if you make eight or nine dollars an hour in a low income and low wage, you will get tax increases as you do not have childcare texas. morning, headline this lawmakers tussle over tax breaks. they say the temporary breaks include 50 separate provisions benefiting individuals and nonprofits. the vast majority fired at the end of 2013 but still can be claimed for 2004 if congress can agree soon on how to renew them.
extending the brakes third 2014 mean they could be blamed during the tax preparation season. is happening behind -- behind closed doors? some people would like to make these permanent. they are viewed every year right now, do we need this, this, this? some people say, let's make it permanent. other people say, no, let's get rid of them. a third group says, let's extend it until -- the plan that would come out would be an extension for january one. you will be doing it on the 2014 year, and have access to tax exemptions. we will have the same fight at the same time next year. you can take the program and put it in a can and bring it out and played again next december 1. we will be in the same ball of wax. let's get to calls.
pat is in california, a democratic caller. caller: i know the funding situation is facing hurdles mainly in immigration. i am concerned about dual citizenship here. there are too many chinese people coming to the country and having their babies and going , to come back to america to get a nice free education here. that will be a problem downstream. i am not a full and i know the immigration will go through. amnesty will be granted. why don't you guys put a timeline on it? give these people a year and a half to comply with the u.s. id laws. give them a year in a spare allayed by a minute, they are deported. or 10annot go on five years from now. it is bankrupting the country. guest: the president using his becausee power to
congress failed. the speaker refused to bring it up. if he had brought it up, it would have passed because they would have had the democrats backing it and enough republicans that it could have passed. he would not do that because if you did, then he can go back to his caucus and say to them, what are you doing dealing with nancy pelosi? a terrible person you are. so he would not deal with it. the president finally had to do suggesting it is not a bad idea, the timeline, but that would require legislative action, which means people have to sit down and compromise. that is the thing missing here. i have been here for a long time, 14 terms. there was a day when we would sit down and say, i would do this, and you tell me what you would do, and you would agree
and we would find a place in between and a great peer that is called a compromise. it is not a bad word or a bad thing. it is how everything in the world works very it you compromise with your family and your job and i compromise all the time everywhere. congress right now, compromising with the other side is a dirty word. texas, pat, a republican. i am 97 years old and i think one of the biggest problems we have in the united sharpton, along with lewis and jesse jackson. al sharpton has an invited to the white house over 43 times. sharpton owes 450,000 dollars in back taxes.
i remember when al capone was put in contrast, it was because they could not put anything on him but the income tax evasion. ,hat is what i am talking about al sharpton wants to tear this country apart. old to do anything about it, but i can at least talk to somebody. pat's opinion. cosman, the president announced he would like to spend more money getting bodycare is on police and better training them. he also put together a tax force -- task force. you think -- for what he is proposing? there will be a vigorous debate about that. some people like the body cameras and some people do not. i think there is an invasion of
tirelessly but if you have done something out in the public and you need a peace officer -- a police officer, you have done something that is public. take ald be you can so i thinkit, ultimately, people are worried that situations happen, it is he said she said kind of argument and it would be much better if you had a picture, and you can show exactly what happened. a lot of the disagreement would be hard to hold up. if you had a video that showed such and such happened and one person would agree you would have a picture to show and go to the i think there are some people whol think that it's bad because it takes the advantage away from the police. they can do whatever they want and other people will think it makes it better for the police
because it protects them. they now have a picture of what happened, and they can say here it is we were conflicted about whether we want the police to have the ability to protect themselves, and we can't pass gun control laws in this country for automatic weapons. now, if i was a police officer, i couldn't imagine why you'd want anybody selling automatic weapons. because if i'm up against an automatic weapon with a hand gun, i'm overmatched. so we, we put the police in a very difficult position. >> host: newport ritchie, florida, ann is next, an independent. hi, ann. >> guest: hello, representative mcdermott. hi, greta. this is a call, i'm kind of nervous. i lived in washington stays in eastern and -- state in eastern and western washington state, and i'm calli