tv Newsmakers with Representative Mark Walker CSPAN September 10, 2017 10:00am-10:35am EDT
of a channel in miami. we will have more on this tomorrow morning on c-span's washington journal. tomorrow is also the anniversary of 9/11, so we shall be focusing on two issues. 16 safe is the homeland years after the horrific attacks on september 11, 2001? >> tom frazer who is the director of georgetown university study of emergency and disaster management, will be looking at hurricane irma disaster relief efforts. tomorrow morning, seven a.m. eastern time, 4:00 for you in the west coast to read newsmakers is next, with congressman mark walker. thank you for joining us this sunday. have a great week ahead and have a great weekend. ♪ [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017]
ncicap.org] creeper ncicap.org] creeper ncicap.org] >> newsmakers is next. this past at action week by president trump and his administration, starting with attorney general jeff sessions talking about efforts to end the deferred action for childhood arrivals program. that is followed by president trump talking about the daca program, and the legislative agenda while meeting with congressional leaders at the white house. later, the education secretary, the the devos talks about title ix reforms on sexual conduct in colleges.
>> this week on "newsmakers" representative mark walker, a republican of north carolina. in the studio, we have a reporter from bloomberg news. she has the first question. >> on friday, an important bill was passed. you voted no against the bill. can you explain your boat and -- can you explain your no votes and your position on this legislation? rep. walker: thank you for the opportunity of being with you today. i did vote no on this particular package, primarily because, along with other republicans, we felt concerned this was not a good attachment to any kind of debt ceiling raising. steve mnuchin met with republicans three or four months ago, back in june, and we specifically asked for some kind of long-term reform to raise the debt ceiling. in 2014, only 24 republicans voted for the debt ceiling to be increased. we understand the importance of
it. all we are asking is that some reform be attached to it long-term. nearly all of us footage for the relief package on wednesday, but when we start attaching things that drive is deeper into debt time after time, a lot of us have problems with that. >> raising the debt ceiling, funding the government, these are issues that are now pushed off for about nine weeks. how do you approach these negotiations knowing what you know now about how senate and house leadership carry themselves, and are meeting with president trump on this? how can you as the committee chairman say that these are going to be our top pieces to negotiate? what do the next couple of weeks look like? rep. walker: we are going to do the same thing we have done the last several weeks and be proactive and specific. we have narrowed it down to 19
different reforms that we feel could be included. not even altogether, just pick one. i was very disappointed today, in the treasury secretary's response to our questions in the conference meeting that we had. concerning specifically one question i personally asked, what does the debt ceiling look like in december? the treasury secretary could not answer that. many of us found that troubling. >> what are going to be be top priorities for you out of those 19? i know that you outlined the lengthy list in a letter to rid what are the top issues? rep. walker: yes. we have listed out several that we consider top issues, considering the perspective. depending on the conference general, the ways and means committee, we are number one on the list -- allowing that debt ceiling to be raised while also protecting the taxpayer. i spoke to the chairman of the ways and means committee, kevin brady, and we discussed this. we are trying to find ways to include that in some of the legislation.
this has to happen. other things like making the cbo more transparent, putting some kind of reforms on medicaid for capable bodied adults. those are the kinds of things that we feel like should be included. to help with the long-term increase to the national debt. we cannot sitans, through the obama and ministration for the last eight years and talk about increased debt, and then when it comes to our turn, we are on track for much ending the democrats were in charge. it is ludicrous and insincere. >> given the list of demands from your group, when you go to negotiate the next time around, what do you say to people who say, you are just forcing the president and republicans to rely on democratic votes to get something done. rep. walker: i think if they would incorporate some of the reforms we wouldn't be reliant on democrat vote. that is the whole point, is that if we are able to attach some reforms, we would have both of those 90 people who voted
against this particular package in the senate today, we would have the bulk of their support. the majority of those 90 people would support it if there was some kind of republican reform attached to it. that is the whole issue time after time. this has been going on for six or seven years. it is not a matter of it is a poison bill, we understand that if we have spend the money and we do not want to default on our sovereign debt, we understand all of that. if we do that and not put anything attached to it, it is very disconcerting. that that is what a lot of us were troubled about this. >> congressman, republicans do not have a supermajority in the senate, so they would need at least eight democrats to vote for whatever legislation comes out of the house. do the house representatives have an responsibility to design the legislation in a way that votes in theocrat senate and have you spoken to your democratic colleagues about the reforms?
i imagine some of them are also concerned about the long-term debt? representative walker: to be fair, they are concerned. you are exactly right. i have spoken with several democrats and there is a growing concern as far as how fast we are adding to the national debt. i have spoken to senate colleagues as well. to the heart of your question, should the house be crafting legislation with the mindset that if we get 60 votes out of the senate, my answer to that is no. i do not think the senate is sitting around wondering if their legislation is going to get past. further, the house should not be worrying where others are on this. where the senate or the administration or the people in the house are, we have to do what we are supposed to do, fulfilling the promises we made to the american people. not to be flippant about it, we need to work ultimately to get the law passed, but to sit around and craft legislation specifically in order to get eight or nine votes from the
democrats in the senate, i do not think that is where we have to be. december, ahead to when we have to vote on this again, the acquisition will be really involved in this. you mentioned there were conversations with house republicans, with the determination, with mick mulvaney, they were advocating yes votes on this massive package as a way to get something done. start working on tax reform, i understand that they were making that argument. how do you work with the administration while supporting their priorities but also wanting to say we need to have these fiscal reforms? rep. walker: forgive me for putting it so bluntly but , getting something done from my mindset doesn't include adding hundreds of billions of dollars to the national debt. as far as working with steve mnuchin and mick mulvaney, i think the burden -- they are encumbered to work with us. offer fromclined the
steve mnuchin and june, my question to him today was not answered, which is -- which reforms were considered? how many meetings did you have to discuss the concern for republicans to not raise? the debt ceiling? why did we not have discussions about these in attached? it was not answered. it was very specific, i hope that they will hear, as they did this morning from the base of the republicans, that they need to engage us, in talking about some of these reforms. right now, we have been shut out, and i'm hoping that with nine -- 90 republicans voting against the bill today, they will pay attention to it. >> congressman, 90 republicans voted no after this meeting with the treasury secretary and mick mulvaney, the budget director. do you think those two administration officials turned yes's?- any no's into
>> that is a tough question to speculate. if i were to give you an answer, i would probably say they lost a few votes rather than gaining a few. >> why? representative walker because of : steve mnuchin's inability to answer some of the basic questions that came from members. in his closing statement as far as why we should be voting for it, it fell flat and created farmers throughout the conference. i do not think they did a great service to their position and it took kevin mccarthy coming in to try and rally the troops, which he does well. he laid out and articulate vision of why this was important. >> how can you change this dynamic? there is a lot of legislation that is going to come up in the next few months, not only the things that have been pushed off until december, it also tax reform, immigration legislation is going to be on the agenda as well.
how do you change the dynamic not only within the conference but also working with the administration? how do you get the treasury secretary and the president to take the demands of conservative seriously? >> i don't think there is any guarantee. but we promised the chairman back in may, that we would take the fight forward. the exert words were that we would be proactive instead of reactive. we will continue that. i think one of the things that helps is that when you have the bulk of conservatives that voted against something that the administration had signed off on, i hope that sends a clear signal. i don't know of anything else we can do to make it stronger. a lot of these conservatives have constituent bases at the heart of the support for this administration. i hope that somewhere along the line there will be more
discussions as far as, where is the breakdown? why did this happen with unanimous or majority support to get some of these things done? such as this vote today? we have to be out there vocally. you don't have to be back -- you don't have to do that any disparaging way. or a name-calling way, but i do not believe that we are not in a place thate can sit on our hands and wait around anywhere. >> or a signal to the adminiration that they need to work with democrats in order to get things done. they did get the bill passed today, with help from the minority party to read rep. walker: if you are looking that fr a democrapersctive, then wouldgree bumyobs to focus on what elieve a rublicans values in repuican pnciples. ifoureounting onemra to getomethi de,or me that icoterproctive. >> one of the big developments this week was a deal rich -- a
deal reached by president trump and congressional leadership to get to this legislation that passed on the floor on can you friday. talk about the dynamic within the conference and how you felt , gettingy in the deal past with democrats, it was a pretty surprising development. the fact that he did not decide to go with the idea from speaker ryan and majority leader mcconnell. with speaker ryan's leadership, it doesn't seem like any sort of direct challenge right now, republicans are quick to say they support him, but do you think he could do anything different in the future? rep. walker: when you say he, you were referring to the president or mitch mcconnell? >> could speaker ryan do anything different? rep. walker: i think speaker ryan is the best policy person in the house. i think there are probably areas where we have got to be, not just speaker ryan, but our entire conference has to meet -- be more demonstrated in our
position to speak out against what might be a title away from the other side at times. we have to hold our positions and articulate those well, not just from a visionary standpoint but for that execution that creates the opportunity to accomplish those. that is where i see us going that fall. i know that many of us are supported by this eager and we want to see him continue to do well, but we do need to have winsquickly, -- some quickly. if we have nothing to show for it, it will be very bad. >> congressman, you say that the speaker is a good policy person, is there a skill set that he is lacking for the job? rep. walker: speaker of the house is the toughest job in washington. i have learned that in the nearly three years that i have been in washington. incumbent upon him and all of us to think about how
b,get from point a to point the action it takes to be able to accomplish that. creativity ist, wonderful, but i think we have to do better at execution. >> congressman do you think , republicans are going to be able to overhaul the u.s. tax code this year? rep. walker: i do. to use the action verb "overhaul" would be subjective as far as who is interpreting what level of overhauling will be happening, but i expected it to happen before thanksgiving. >> will it be comprehensive reform or merely tax cuts? rep. walker: i think it will be reform. kevin brady deserves a lot of congratulatory remarks because of how hard he has worked as chairman of the ways and means, even through the health care he continued to stay diligent in trying to put the best reforms possible. that is why i think the framework is there. it is reasonable to believe we
could get this done by the end of november. >> does steve mnuchin's position on the debt limit in parol his help on crafting the tax legislation? >> i think it is a fair position. we just got off a meeting and getting ready to vote today, i think we will need to see a stronger vision from him. when it comes to tax reform. as opposed to the talking points, we want to know what it looks like. i am not saying that he is not the person for the job that he needs to do a better job than what he has done for the debt ceiling. . >> stronger vision? rep. walker: it is his responsibility to understand from the policy side, not just from his perspective but the , process of what it takes to get things done through committee, and to be available, working alongside the committees
of jurisdiction to a compass -- accomplish this. >> does this deal with president trump and the democrats cause you anxiety when thinking about the future of tax form? tax reform? might go off,e the president, and try to find another way to bring immigrants into what is now a republican-focused tax reform plan? rep. walker: i don't blame the president for trying to bring democrats to the positions. positions we believe will put the country in a better position moving forward, whether it is tax reform, defense, issues of immigration. i understand it, and i applaud him for it. i do not think this will be a pattern, him working with chuck schumer and now think of those he it it? we were. was it uncomfortable? it was. i don't think this one time making this kind of move establishes any kind of long-term concern at this if
point. it's a pattern, it would be, but not at this point. >> according to nancy pelosi, the president agreed with her on passing the dream act. where are you on that? representative walker, i want to make sure that it is accurate. sometimes we hear that he has agreed on this or that, but we want to be sure. not to do a total class, this is something that i think the did very well, passing the concern to congress because it is a legislative issue, something we should be able to handle. >> what should the scope of the legislation be? should it just be legal status of the so-called dreamers or also the people that would fall into the dapa atterbury? . category? those who have children who are daca recipients. should it address the millions of people that are here undocumented? rep. walker: i think those are several pieces of legislation,
, not one decision, but i will add that with republicans being in charge, it is incumbent upon us to pass some kind of long-term result to all of these issues rather than kicking the can down the road. we need to secure the border to make sure that we do not continue to live through the issue, but this is not something that we just look the other way and hopefully democrats will figure it out. this is something that we need to be in charge of, with the house and that the administration. it is incumbent upon us to be able to resolve this long-term. -- do youupport support the building of the border wall and mexico? >> yes, i do. i support securing the border. i think it is going to be part of the process of reaching any kind of long-term agreement on the things you just mentioned. >> the border wall is going to be a crazy better with debt ceiling and government funding. -- a crazy political battle. can you talk about how you will be approaching those
conversations? are you starting to outline what you think will be the top priorities in the conversation in terms of funding the government? what would you like to see included in the bill? rep. walker: i believe all of those issues are concerned. if you're asking me for my priority standpoint, tax reform is number one. health care has been at the forefront. we are having to see what kind inbandwidth or fight is left the house, after passing it one time. is there another way to try to accomplish passing it a second time. daca is also important, the debt ceiling. as i said earlier, if republicans across the board cannot resolve some of these issues, we may get a failing grade for this congress. if we are waiting until january or february to accomplish this, we have waited too long. all of those issues should be something we should be capable of. >> how worried are you about the leverage in december with democrats going to be supplying some of the votes for the debt
ceiling and having a government spending conversation as well? are you worried at all about the democratic leverage? >> i think some of our leverage was surrendered to the democrats and i am concerned about it or read but i am not worried about it. we will do what we think is right, try to create and lay out a vision. will we get the amount the votes that are needed? i do not know that we wheel, that is one of the concerns, we are not sitting here on the hamster will, but that is one of our concerns. >> you mentioned health care. you signed on to a petition that would not include a replacement for the obamacare law. do you think there is time for the house to go forward with that in september, knowing that the budget reconciliation vehicle expires on september 30?
rep. walker: i don't believe i actually signed that discharge. we had some discussion and at this point we are probably leaning in the direction or in favor of them a but we will do whatever it takes. if we need to do or repeal only to try to continue, not saying i'm opposed, but i don't know if we are able. it is one thing, if it was to go either way, long-term. but in north carolina for example at the end of this year, , 94 out of 100 counties will only have one choice. this isn't something that is going to go away. we are going to have to deal with it sooner or later. >> is there some kind of market stable legislation that will come back from the senate, is that something you and your colleagues would consider? rep. walker: i think so. not to the point where the president is, looking for any kind of deal, but we want to continue to have the mandates removed on the individual and employer.
not keeping $180 billion worth of taxes, and we are willing to consider anything that the senate can get done at this point. if they cannot get the skinny even the promise of republicans in the house going to conference, it creates concern of what can get passed in the senate. we are staying hopeful that they get something accomplished. >> we have time for a couple more questions. >> the next couple of weeks, do you have any plans to push some of these spending reforms he -- that you would have liked to see attached to the debt ceiling? you have children's health insurance, the faa reforms, any plans to use leverage from the rfc, to try to get something else done in september? rep. walker: there is. i'm hesitant to lay out specifically what the strategy is. >> come on, you are on newsmakers, congressman -- [laughter] rep. walker: i did layout
earlier which maybe working with kevin brady. for the default prevention act in the ways and means committee. if we want to be consistent about some of these reforms, that we believe are very important, the debt ceiling, raising it is not the only avenue to be able to try and accomplish some of these things. >> speaking about spending and tax reform the budget is the , next obvious challenge for the house we have seen the budget resolution really struggled the last couple of months, and it is finally starting to get attention, maybe coming to the floor next week. how important is this vehicle, with billions of dollars worth of cuts in mandatory spending how important is it for the , house to definitively pass this? rep. walker: it is crucial. the house must pass this budget. i know that we have friends of ours on the left and right who still have some questions and concerns and some of those are valid. this is the vehicle for tax reform.
chairwoman diane lack has been incredible in trying to find long-term reforms on the mandatory side, in fact $203 billion over the next 10 years, and she is to be applauded for that. it passed unanimously with republicans in the committee. it is time to put it on the floor and if people do not want to vote for it, those folks need to go on record. >> do you think there are enough republican votes at this point to pass the budget? or to adopt the budget resolution, and do you and your committee support it? rep. walker: i don't know there are enough votes to pass it right now. according to the latest count, it may be in the ball park. the second question, yes, i do plan on supporting it. i believe the bulk of the republican senate committee supports it as well. >> one more question. >> congressman, one suggestion that came up yesterday from chuck schumer and president trump was to suspend the debt
limit altogether, do away with it. is that something you would support? rep. walker: no. it would not be something i would support, and i do not see it happening, i think it was just a conversation between a couple of new york buddies or -- it is not something that either myself and i believe most members in the committee would have a problem with that. >> thank you, congressman. >> thank you so much, congressman mark walker. >> thank you. >> we turn to our to reporters here. anna, let me begin with you. what is our take away from the conversation there with their chair of the -- with the chair of the republican finance committee? >> you can tell from the congressman's frustration how much tension there is in the republican party right now and how hard it is the way the two houses of congress are set up,
those dynamics the way the , democrats have been able to be very unified in their position, whatever his vision they take, whether it be on the debt ceiling or obamacare. it is hard for republicans to get anything done, counting on their own party. that makes for a challenging job for speaker ryan. said that we he should not craft legislation that can pass in the senate. but if they do not, it does not end up on the president's desk, so what are folks telling you about december? will democrats have a sit at the table or be relied on to pass votes? >> it is clear that they will have a seat at the table. he says that democrats do not have too much leverage but i have been hearing from members that they are nervous about the next couple of weeks and whether
they will be able to -- whether they will be betrayed again. this deal between the democrats and the president has really shaken the caucus and again, the biggest issues of the year, the debt limit, funding the federal government the very first , spending bill that president trump will actually have a role in trying to shape. you have the border wall. you have daca, pretty much everything is coming to a head at the end of the year. everybody hates those holiday time votes, but it is pretty much unavoidable at this point, unless you can see some major development in the next few weeks. >> what did you make of the congressman's assessment of treasury secretary's performance on friday before the republican conference? >> that's an interesting dynamic of air, and i think it is not a new complaint. i have heard, especially conservatives, say they have taken their suggestions for senate reforms to the treasury secretary and house leadership
months ago, and they were not considered, they were received with a nod and, ok, that's a good idea, but not taken seriously. that created a lot of resentment, and i think you are seeing it double over today. as the congressman said, that is going to have implications for tax reform because it is steve , mnuchin in gary cohen that are heading up the tax or form reforming up the tax efforts in the white house. if those are the two people representing the administration in these conversations, that is a hard proposal to sell to the republican conference as a whole. >> what are you hearing about the timeline for tax reform? , the treasuryer secretary, they have all said that it will get done before the end of the year. >> speaker ryan on thursday, said he is not willing to commit to something coming out at the end of the month. meanwhile, the white house is saying that it was going to happen, it is going to get done, even earlier.
but realistically, when you look , at how difficult it is to get anything done, we talked a little bit about the budget resolution, which is required to have the gop's tax reform even start the process! and there is a lot of problems with this bill! even just thinking about the forces outside the republican's contrails, the hurricane that is about to hit florida, republicans in the house are trying to figure out how to bring a budget to the floor without even knowing how many members they will have next week. when he think about the forces with the hurricane, republicans are trying to figure out how to get a budget to the floor but they have a lot of managing to do here. >> they say that they would like to pass tax reform and speaker ryan often says that republicans are wired the same way when it comes to tax reform. they all prefer lower taxes, but when you get to be policy details, there is going to be a a lot of pushback and a lot of
people in different histories will be affected in the front ways. i don't think it is going to be very easy. >> anna anderson, on top of all like therepublicans chairman of the committee that we were just talking to, they would like to see another vote on health care? is that possible? must -- you saw so much frustration that i did not go anywhere and the senate. he goes to the other point that they don't have a responsibility to design legislation that can pass in the senate. if that is their attitude, then it will not. it is going to be hard to move those republican parties, and it is also white tax reform is so important, given the failure on health care. that is the main bold letter piece of legislation that they wanted to do this year.
>> one thing to keep in mind because we got this debt ceiling , funding deal done so early, you can't exaggerate how remarkable it is that they are so ahead of the deadline. september 30, and here we are. monday will be september 11, so there is extra time right now. they have a next her couple of weeks that they did not have planned. this was supposed to be taken up by really hard fiscal conversations. we have several other deadlines on other programs that are going september 30, to expire, but there's a chance we could see something else on health care bubble up. >> and attaching the continuing resolution to fund the government for the rest of the year, that is something that before this week, not really anyone was talking about doing before, right up to the deadline at the end of the month. if they dive back into the health care, i think they will get back into some of the hard feelings that were left after the failure of the plan in the senate. >> we will have to leave it
there. thank you very much to with of you for being part of newsmakers, we appreciate it. >> thank you. >> thank you. q&a, founder and ceo of "open the books" talking about how taxpayer dollars are spent and the need for government transparency. >> the veterans affairs, we have audited their checkbook and the last summer we found that up to 1006 veterans died waiting to see a doctor and the v.a. spent $20 million on a high-end art portfolio. costingchristmas trees as much as cars, $21,000. sculptures priced like five-bedroom homes, sculptures for $700,000 procured by a v.a. center that serves blind veterans.
worth $1.2 million, this is the type of waste that is in our government. >> tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. monday, marks the 16th anniversary of september 11 and our live coverage of the remembrances begins at 8 a.m. eastern on c-span two, live from new york city for the ceremony of the september 11 memorial. at 9:30 a.m., live coverage of the september 11th sermon at the pentagon and at 9:45 a.m., on his band three, live from shanksville, pennsylvania for the commemoration of flight 93, national memorial. watch live on c-span.org, on any of our c-span networks or listen live on our c-span radio app.