tv House Budget Committee Republicans Hold News Conference CSPAN July 18, 2017 8:28pm-8:50pm EDT
it was not that they came to us and we sat down and could not agree. they thought they could do it on their own. now it is clearly can't, and the door is open. it would be for the good of america. thank you, everybody. announcer 1: and earlier today, the house budget chairman diane black held a conference on the 2018 budget resolution which will be marked up in committee on wednesday. she was joined by other replica -- republican members.
mrs. black: so good morning, everyone, and thank you for being here. today we are introducing the house fiscal year 2018 budget, building a better america, a plan for fiscal responsibility. in past years, the budget has only been a vision, but now with the republican congress and a republican white house, this budget is a plan for action. and now is our moment to achieve real results for the people that we serve in building a better america. this is a plan to balance the budget. it's for economic growth. it secures our national defense. it returns power to the states, and it holds washington accountable. a budget is also a vital step to trigger reconciliation, and this
plan lays out reconciliation instructions to achieve two goals. one is pro-growth tax reform, to build a tax code that is simple, fair, and competitive. and two is to achieve $200 billion in mandatory savings and reforms to cut the deficit. this budget and these reconciliation instructions lay out a path to make real and lasting changes that will power our country forward. with deficits starting to rise again, and our national debt becoming unsustainable, the status quo is no longer acceptable, and we must be bold, and we must act. this budget lays out the steps, and i look forward to a successful markup tomorrow. passage on the house floor and final agreement with the senate. and if you want to read our budget, please go to balancebudget.gop. and it's now my honor to have here at the podium our vice chair, congressman todd rokita. mr. rokita: thank you,
chairwoman black, and good morning, everybody. todd rokita, indiana four. then on the committee for seven years now, vice chairman for three. and i want to say how very proud i am of all the lawmakers behind me. we have some very articulate new members and some excellent veteran members who have come together. we've been debating this budget internally for weeks now. i think with very, very good results. some hard decisions were made, but decisions that at every turn were made in the interest of this country and the betterment of it for future generations. i want to talk a little bit about what this budget does for growing the economy. right now the american dream is frankly slipping away for many americans. the last eight years have seen slower than expected economic growth, stagnant wages, and millions choosing not even to look for a job.
i am going to repeat that millions choosing to not even , look for a job. what has become of the situation, of this environment, of this country, and for many the sense of opportunity seems to be gone. there are a lot of people who say we should just accept this as the new normal. but this group refuses to do so because those people are wrong. this is an historic budget that rejects the losing attitude and promotes pro-growth policies like fixing our broken tax code, reforming regulations, getting at reforming our health care system, and returning trust to the entrepreneurs and innovators who in fact make the country great. not government bureaucrats or programs. now with these policies, our budget will increase economic growth, we estimate, by 2.6%. that will provide more revenues to help balance the budget but more importantly provide hope and opportunity for all
americans, and that's what we all should be about, democrat and republican alike. thank you. chairman. mrs. black: thank you, todd. and now next i'm proud to have with us today one of our freshman members from minnesota, jason lewis. mr. lewis: thank you, chairman black. i would, too, like to say how happy i am to work with all of these people and what a great job they've done. i came here to balance a budget. i came here to get us on a glide path to balance a budget, and this budget does that through mandatory reductions. first time in decades we've done that. if we don't do that, you are going to have $758 billion in interest payments in 10 years. we have got a debt crisis that we need to handle. we can't do nothing, so we took a bold action here and combining these very, very bold reductions with economic growth. and by the way, 2.6% economic growth is post-world war ii norms. doing that will get us to this balanced budget, but more
importantly it goes behind everything we are doing on this committee. we are growing the economy, getting more private sector investment and growing median family incomes. that's our goal on the budget committee, to get more growth so that everybody has a rising tide of economic growth. that benefits everybody in minnesota and across this country. so that's why i came here to do. that's what these folks came here to do. i am proud to work with them and proud to present this budget that builds for a better america. thank you. mrs. black: another one of our freshmen who have been very involved in the committee and also have served our country for a number of years, one of our freshmen, congressman jack bergman. mr. bergman: good morning, everyone, and thank you, chairman black, for your leadership and truly for the last month, chairman black's leadership going back and forth between the committee leadership, other groups has been exemplary and innovative.
the first and foremost responsibility of the federal government is to ensure the security of our country and our people. the last few years has seen our military underfunded and readiness and training suffer because of that. we need to ensure that our military is capable, trained, and resourced to keep our country safe worldwide. this budget changes those shortfalls. we increase defense spending by $70 billion-plus compared to last year's level to give our troops the support and the training they need to defend our country worldwide and to strengthen america's leadership role around the world.
we also called for increased accountability in the pentagon and in the veterans' administration to better serve those who have given so much for our nation. we have the finest fighting force in the world. it is our responsibility to keep it that way, and this budget does that. thank you very much. mrs. black: one of my colleagues from 2010, someone who has served on the rules committee for a number of years, congressman rob woodall. mr. woodall: thank you, madam chairman. i'm rob woodall from georgia seven, and i came in six years ago with the chairman in the very big class of 2010. the very first cycle, designee of the rules committee to the budget committee. and we all sat around the room and we grappled with chairman paul ryan to try to rein in spending, to try to spur
economic growth, and we produced an amazing document. and there's not as much gray hair in this room as there is on this stage, but if you remember this press conference our spirits were high, but we weren't able to get it across the finish line. what the chairwoman has done in this budget is the beginning of a culture change in this town. this happens to be the first budget press conference, you wouldn't know the difference. if you've been covering them for years, if you have been covering them for decades you had to be , in this room -- it would have been an entirely different building when president clinton in his first half of his first term came together to try to move the needle on spending. the over $200 billion in reconciliation instructions that are included in this budget say that nobody gets a free pass. that's less than 1% of mandatory spending across this country over the next 10 years just to put it in perspective, but that nobody gets a pass, that america deserves an accountable government, and that we will go and we will look at every penny
for savings. no committee gets a pass. no district gets a pass. we've got to come together and make the tough decisions. so often, madam chair, we have put together great budgets, but this year we put together a great budget with the tools that the committee needs to actually turn that budget into action. mark this day down as the day the culture begins to change on the budget committee. i think you are going to see this for years and years to come, and it's going to make a difference to those families back home. thank you. mrs. black: i do want to thank all the members that are standing behind me and other members that are not present with us here today for all their hard work. listen, we have been working on this now for over four months, maybe closer to five months. this is truly has been a -- this has truly been a team effort and i want to thank the members of the committee. i want to thank the leadership team, the house appropriations committee, and the house armed services committee for bringing our conference together around
this top line discretionary number, and all of the authorizing committees, as congressman woodall said, who are prepared to tackle some of these big challenges in mandatory spending. as he said, this is a change in culture. when we came here in 2010, we all wanted to and desired to change the culture here in washington and to go after that mandatory spending, which is about 2/3 of our spending, and we have been unable to do that. so this is an opportunity to change the culture right here in washington. this is a budget that is a product of the entire conference and now is the time to put this plan into action. and so thank you again for being here. with that i am happy to take some questions. yes, sir. reporter: chairman black, does this budget have the votes to get out of committee and onto the house floor, and how confident should markets be about tax reform this year coming from this budget? mrs. black: well, i can tell you this budget will come out of our committee tomorrow. it will be a budget that will then go to the house floor.
we have been working with our members that are not part of our committee to help them understand the vision that we have in this building a better america. i love the work that has been done by our committee on this. and we will be working, all of the members, making sure they understand the significance and importance about what we have put in this document which is a vision for the future of this country. yes. reporter: have you had any conversations with your counterpart, senator enzi, about these mandatory cuts, and if so has he been supportive about this? mrs. black: i meet with senator enzi on a weekly basis, and we talk about a lot of things. this is one of the things we talk about as he is the budget chairman in the senate. and of course, right now the senate is working on a lot of different issues. he certainly understands where we're going and has carried that message back to the senate. reporter: mrs. black, did you ask cbo to do a macroeconomic
analysis of this budget, and did they tell you they were unable to do it? mrs. black: the cbo, as you all know, uses a static and that is something that the cbo has done for years. we also recognize that the cbo scores on the current law, and so there will be a difference in what we assume in our budget because we assume economic growth through things like regulatory reform and tax reform, giving power back to states. so it's not that we're in conflict with one another. we have different assumptions . and as the chairman -- vice chairman said, the economic growth of 2.6% is really -- maybe it was jason lewis that said that -- it was under what has been historical average over the last 50 years. so our assumptions of the 2.6% are really not out of line with historical averages.
reporter: given the difficulties with the intended health care reform this year, given october 6 date for reconciliation legislation come back to your committee, how optimistic, given what's happened between health care and the fact that september is going to be a busy month, that that actually -- that october 6 deadline will be met? mrs. black: we are going to be eternally optimistic the senate is going to get their work done. i know they are taking an action today on the health care bill. we can do our work in our conference and in our body in the house, and we'll anticipate that the senate will also do their work so that we will be able to work together for a conclusion, a good conclusion for getting this budget passed. yes. >> chairman black, this budget, looking at it for the first time now, the document, included the assumptions made on the ahca on the american health care act,
yet the senate doesn't seem to be, it doesn't seem it will move forward. how do you resolve that? is your budget already a little bit out of whack because what happened in the senate? and also, can you talk about the snap cuts and whether you think that will mean fewer people who will get those benefits? mrs. black: first of all, i want to say that when we do our budget, we have to do our budget on the assumptions that we know , and we have done them on what we have done and accomplished here in our own body. so if the senate is successful, and they are able to give us another number, we will readjust our numbers accordingly. as far as the snap program, we are going to leave that up to the authorizers, as was said by congressman woodall. each of the authorizers have worked with our committee on coming up with projections on what they believe they will do in their committee. when we set those numbers, those are numbers that we set in coordination with them, but that will be up to them to make those decisions about where they will meet those targets. and so obviously snap is one of
those programs that needs to be looked at very carefully because we want to be sure that every dollar that is used is being used for those that are the most needy, and that we look at every program to make sure that we are reforming them as necessary because we certainly want to take care of those that are in the most need. reporter: given that the senate has just abandoned a partisan approach to health care, is it wise for you guys to proceed with reconciliation for tax reform and for mandatory cuts, another partisan approach where maybe that's not viable in the senate, and maybe not viable here? do you guys still support that path for tax reform and cutting spending? mrs. black: we do. we here in the house will do our work, and i think that's very important that we do our work and that we show the senate that we can do our work, and then we will work with the senate because obviously that is the process, and that's what we will do.
but we cannot not do our work dependent on what the other body is doing, and so the american people want tax reform. we have talked about tax reform as part of our better way, and we will continue to work for tax reform here in our, in our house of representatives. one more question back here. reporter: you all have talked about being part of the class of 2010, which came in on the pledge to repeal and replace obamacare. now that that effort has collapsed, it seems very unlikely that it will be revised, at least in terms of the full repeal and replace. are you concerned about what that means for republicans in 2018? mrs. black: i'm not going to give up. i never give up, and i don't think we ought to give up. we don't know what's going to happen in the senate. it has been obvious in past history we have seen things turn around very quickly. we have done our work here in the house. we have given them our product and we expect we will get something back from them, and we are going to anticipate that they will have success. thank you all for being here
today. we appreciate it. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] announcer 1: house republicans unveiled their $1.1 trillion 2018 budget plan tuesday. inincluded $622 million pentagon spending and $511 billion in nondefense spending. it called for the overhaul of the tax code and $300 billion in entitlement programs like medicare, medicaid and social security. they will work on the republican budget blueprint for 2018. live coverage for the market begins 10:00 a.m. eastern on sees in three -- on c-span3. you can listen live on the free c-span radio app.
♪ announcer 1: c-span's washington journal," live every day with policy issues that impact you. we will continue our conversation on the federal budget. tom reed from new york will join us to talk about that and efforts to boost u.s. manufacturing. and the ohio democratic congressman on the proposal and the future of the democratic party. from theiam holden wall street journal looking at the future of nafta and the trump administration's work to renegotiate. be sure to watch "washington journal," wednesday morning. join the discussion. sunday night on afterwords, reporting on house near tactics are used. tactics are used.
she is interviewed by the washington post media critic. >> you don't stick up for mccain , you hammer the washington post who has not reported on this incident as opposed to say, why are you smearing john mccain? >> [indiscernible] >> i know it. >> i am not going to defend john mccain or donald trump. any behavior, and people misbehave you use media behavior -- it doesn't mean i am supporting him or cheering him on. it is a public thing. it is read as he is being supported or you must not like x or y. it has nothing to do with looking at accurate media coverage. i'm spoken out frequently about that for the washington post coverage.
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