House Speaker Pelosi News Conference CSPAN July 17, 2019 1:11pm-1:29pm EDT
yesterday our country lost a giant of the court. a voice for justice, equality, and the rule of law. justice john paul stevens. he was a true guardian of the constitution. he made history not only as the longest serving justice but as one of its finest. our country mourns his loss. he will be lying in state monday. the service will be tuesday, and again, it is a great loss to our country. last night i had a particular pleasant experience which is to
sign the legislation which enabled us to use the washington monument as a backdrop for the moon launch. pretty exciting. i hope everyone will take advantage of observing that as we observe that historic event in our country, the world's history. it's pretty exciting. so here we are. as you know we campaigned on for the people agenda, lowering health care costs, bigger paychecks, cleaner government. and to that end, bigger paychecks, this week we'll have three bills on the floor raising the minimum wage. raising the minimum wage. it increases wages for up to 33 million workers and lifts 1.3 million americans out of poverty. it would help secure fairness and equality for women, many of whom will be the beneficiaries
of this giving nearly 20 million working women a raise and help narrow the gender gap that wage gap that disproportionately impacts women. we're also proud to pass this bill on the anniversary where america declared all men and women were created equal. we also will continue to deliver on our promises to workers today we'll honor our promise to be -- to the hard working men and women of the labor as we lift the cadillacs tax protecting health benefits that workers have negotiated and next week the house will move to pass the lewis act ensuring that millions of americans who received retirements will receive the retirement and benefit securities they have earned. we're very pleased at the outcome of all of the back and forth on census. proud of the testimony the house
counsel made before the superior court, because the census is a pillar of our democracy enshrined in our sacred constitution to ensure that we are all equally counted and represented. and so we will continue to follow the facts and hold the administration accountable for the policy decisions. this is not about citizenship. this is about patriotism, and now having instilled fear, hopefully we can allay the fear by having the people sign up for the census. as we approach the 200. day mark as the transformative majority coming up soon, house democrats will build on the bold promise we have made on our for the people agenda. we talked about lower health cost by preserving the prescription drug benefit, lowering the prescription drugs and preserving the preexisting condition benefit. and some of that legislation
will be coming up next week. raise worker's wages. i talked about that. reduce the role of big dark money in washington, hr-1, but part of hr-1, we have divided into parts, save our federal elections, the voting rights act and the rest and we're hoping to get some of these passed discreetly. senator mcconnell has called himself the grim reaper. these bills are alive and well with the public, and public opinion as lincoln said can make almost anything happen. so we look forward to that. questions? >> reporter: thank you, mad m ne speaker. robert mueller will be here next week at this time. what is your expectation hfor hs testimony, and is there a chance that there might not be any other clarity on the findings of
the special counsel's report? >> well, i think the report has brought some clarity, and his own public statement brought further clarity, and now when he speaks about it more people will know what is in the report. i think we should approach it with all of the appropriateness and seriousness of purpose. this is about our country, our constitution, and the separation of powers, obstruction of justice, issues like that. so i would say that, again, it's about patriotism. let us listen. let us know where the facts will take us, and let us have this be as dignified as our constitution would require. and then we'll see what happens after that. we go where the facts lead us. >> reporter: how -- >> >> reporter: you said the opportunity to punish the president. we have to send him a message.
we're not going to allow him to make america a racist country. why is he wrong in the approach he's taking? >> you mean in terms of bringing up an impeachment? >> well, for an impeachment, articles of impeachment to succeed, i haven't really actually seen his articles of impeachment. we'll deal with that resolution on the floor. but as i have said over and over again, with all the respect in the world for mr. green, he's a very prayerful person, and he cares very much about our constitution, and our country. so as i say, with all due respect in the world for him, we have six committees that are working on following the facts in terms of any abuse of power, obstruction out of justice and the rest that the president may have engaged in. that is the serious path that we are on. not that mr. green is not serious. but we'll deal with that on the floor. >> reporter: will you table it? >> i don't know what we will do,
but we will deal with it on the floor. >> reporter: on the debt ceiling. you've been talking to steven mnuchin. what is the pathway on that of spending caps and what are the stumbling blocks to get this done? >> let's start with next week and engineer back. we would like to have something on the floor next thursday. that is -- so that we can send it in a timely fashion to the senate so that they can go through their shall we say particularly senatorial process to get it done in time before they leave. so if we're talking about next thursday being on the floor, we have to back up until this friday to have an agreement reached so that we can duly note it because under the new rules, we don't count weekends in the 72-hour notice. so we'll have to have snag we -- something we can post sometime
this weekend so the time ticks away in order for us to go to rules to committee, rules and to the floor. so when we have an agreement, we'll write it up, and we have to do all of that by friday evening. >> what are the policy issues that are stalling this? >> it's all about money. right? and so -- >> reporter: is there a certain number? >> i think i said yesterday, if you read my letter it was clear. our concern is that the additional initiatives that have been added for veterans whether you approve to the policy or not, they have become the wall, and we need to cover them. we don't think that should be coming out of the regular base and so we don't want the veterans' resources to be competing with each other or competing with other very valuable domestic priorities.
so i think we're -- we are understanding each other, and when we have an announcement, we'll -- you'll be the first to know. >> speaker pelosi -- >> reporter: were you surprised that more republicans didn't side with democrats, and what do you think at the end of the day was achieved given that it was essentially a party-line vote? >> well, the fact is that it was a resolution of the house, and not legislation to go to the senate or be signed by the president. and it was for us to say, and by the way, in the most gentle way, you have no idea the provisions that some people wanted to have in that resolution. this was as benign if condemned the words of the president, not the president but the words of the president, and in doing so, it anchored itself in the words of ronald reagan.
ronald reagan, beautiful speech by ronald reagan which i reference all the time. and so you would have thought that that benign approach might have appealed to them. but when you say were you surprised? were you disappointed? my expectations are not great, but you always hope that they might do the right thing. and say that that language that the president used was not -- was beneath the dignity of the president, beneath the dignity of the people who was criticizing him, and by the way, we were offended that he spoke in such a way about members of congress, but we're offended he says that about people across the country all the time. go back where you came from. and that by it definition, those words, are racism. go look in the ap and other places where they define certain words. that's what that is. but we weren't saying he was racist. we were saying that the words that he used were racist.
so that was as gentle as it could be considering the inappropriateness and the disgusting nature of what the president said. so we did what our members wanted to do and had a very strong 100% vote on it. >> reporter: the president is clearly trying to cast this broader debate as a choice between him and your more progressive members. this fight has now dominated the conversation this week. you've had your resolution. the democrats are rallying behind these members. are you concerned that the president is goading you? >> no. you know what? with all due respect, let's not waste our time on that. we're talking about what we're going to do to help the american people. our caucus is unified on all of that. throughout the whole campaign, i said to the candidates, don't even mention his name. everybody knows who he is. you don't have to describe him to anybody. let's just talk about what we are going to do. and we're going to devote the whole month of august to our for the people agenda which was
successful in terms of connecting with people and their concerns. it still -- it's still the cost of health care, stagnation of wages and the distrust of government are still looming large as concerns for the american people, and that's what we're going to be about. we're not having him set our agenda. we're setting our own agenda. >> reporter: do you have any concerns that the focus on impeachment today and the votes on the floor related to it could jeopardize robert mueller's appearance? >> no. we did our resolution expeditio expeditiously. we'll deal with the mr. green's resolution, but we do have to have a third path. i do, i do think that the president is trying to and we cannot -- and you cannot and we
cannot buy into his fall that he wants to create over everything. because he knows. we all know the argument that can be made against us in terms of our philosophy, in terms of our priorities and the rest. and the president knows the argument that could be made against him, and therefore, he wants to distract from them. you have to give him credit. he's a great distractor, and that's what this is about. so it is -- let's just take it to a better place. let's take it to a better place. america. the president wants to make america great again, we all do. what does that mean? what is america? so many times we've come together and talked about america. america as our ideals in the constitution. an example to the world of a founding documents that rejected a monarch and put forth separation of powers, article one. the legislative branch having
that priority enlisting, and that is being dishonored by the president of the united states. what is america? we the people. we the people. nation of immigrants. by and large, and he is denigrating all the newcomers that come to our country in complete opposition to the beautiful words of ronald reagan in the last speech that he made to the country as president of the united states. what is america? this beautiful land from sea to shining sea and beyond. and god's gift to us that he is almost every day but certainly every week degrading and saying we're not going to deal with climate on the basis of any science. really? what is america? our values. and that's the debate we have all the time. and the battle of the budget, and the rest in terms of how we invest in our children's future. and how these things all come
together. under the guidance of our founders. we the people they said in the preamble to the constitution, but they also said e pler bus un m. out of many one. but they knew we had to be one. and that beautiful guidance is something we must constantly keep in mind as we engage in our differences. at the end of the day, we want to be unifying and not dividing. i wish the president would read that. thank you all very much. >> in just a bit here, the house science sub committee on energy holds a hearing on electric grid modernization.
we'll hear from the assistant energy secretary for cyber security, a scientist from the national renewable emergency laboratory, and the ceo of the energy storage association. that's live at 2:00 p.m. eastern. >> former special counsel roshlt mueller is on capitol hill next week testifying in back to back hearings about possible obstruction of justice and abuse of power by president trump and russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. for live all day coverage on wednesday, july 24th, starts at 8:30 a.m. eastern. watch live or listen with the free c-span radio app. >> if you want more information on members of congress, order c-span's congressional directory available online. >> this isre