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  House Speaker Paul Ryan Interview with Wis Politics President  CSPAN  September 12, 2018 8:35pm-9:09pm EDT

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to come this week on a measure that will change the irs definition of an way -- a full-time employee for insurance coverage from 30 hours week of 40 hours a week. also a debate on a spending package with funding for energy and water projects, the legislative branch, and military construction and veterans affairs. the measure passed the senate this afternoon. more live coverage of the house tomorrow here on c-span. reporter bob post woodward is our washington journal guest monday at 7:00 a.m. eastern, talking about his new book. at 8:30 a.m.ay eastern, former independent counsel kenneth starr joins us to discuss his book.
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week on c-span's "washington journal." >> at the u.s. capitol today, house speaker paul ryan sat down for an interview with jeff mayors. he talked about the republican agenda and trade policy. he also reflected on his tenure as speaker of the house and his plans after he retires from congress in january. >> this is probably the last time that we will interview as speaker.
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you will miss it? >> does it show? >> you look way too happy. you are a short timer. >> i've been here 20 years. doesn't feel like anything is short time. they're coming in the fourth quarter. by the way, was that not the best quarter you have ever seen? [applause] >> we only have a half hour. i will jump right into it. presidentce -- the signed an executive order for doctions for those who election meddling. are you confident in election security in wisconsin, in janesville, in milwaukee? are you confident? occur -- it will occur? >> i have no reason to lose faith in our system.
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i feel good about it. first of all, our systems in wisconsin's are good. -- in wisconsin are good. the rights of the penalties and sanctions on a one who tries to metal, what you worry about is -- to meddle, what you worry about is if you are federalizing too much? this is something that states and localities are in charge of. we want to make sure that we get technological standards and minimums, but you do want to federalize everything. that's why the administration is right to say we are watching, we are coordinating, and we will be penalizing if someone tries to mess with our election security. meaning weoming, know there are malevolent factors out there that are trying to meddle in our elections. i sent a letter to secretaries of state in the last election
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cycle sank, heads up, beware. forave now two more years election officials to prepare for such a thing. we are better prepared. >> are you happy with how social media are trying to govern themselves in this regard? do you think they need a push from you guys? >> i don't know the answer to that question. it is too soon to say. that is why we've been having hearings. which asserted having hearings a week ago. congress has a lot more to learn about this. >> let's talk about tax reform. that may be your legacy item. >> you. >> you think so? >> i think some. that's what i came here to do when i arrived. it is what i worked on for 18 years in the ways and means committee. it is something that i have been working for in congress. i longed believed we needed to overhaul the u.s. tax system if we are going to get faster economic growth that will be globally competitive. we did that.
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exactly what we hoped would happen is happening. much faster economic growth, faster wage growth, jobless rate at a 49-your low, the lowest -- free nine-year low, the lowest latino and a plymouth rate in --tory, more importantly, it latino unemployment rate in history. we are getting a lot of repatriation of funds. that is why manufacturing is seeing an enormous surge in growth and capital expensing. it.el very good about this is one of the things i spent my entire career working on. >> so you know this is coming. the cbo says -- >> they said revenues are up. they are hitting 50-your high. revenues are up -- 50-year high. revenues are up. this cbo report did not surprise me in the least. in said revenues are up faster because of growth.
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interest rates, because the fed is normalizing, is clearly a factor. but it is what i have been say forever and a day. discretionary spending is lower than in 2010. we held the line on discretionary spending. it's entitlements. it is baby boomers retiring. it's our country not ready for it. it's inflation. and economy not ready for it. biggest taxssed the reform bill. the senate does not pass it. we are still below where we were eight years ago on defense. i would strongly argue that defense is the number one priority of the federal government. it is the number one responsibility. we had a serious readiness crisis. it had to be attended to. . we are in the midst of negotiating our second big
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appropriation bill. corporate tax receipts go down and that adds to this growing gap. you can't be happy with a trillion dollars deficit projection. >> we knew it was coming. you know i? do you want me to say everything over again? >> while we all have to pay the piper -- won't we all have to pay the piper? >> corporate receipts are down. didust dropped the rate 21%. u.s. corporations will stay u.s. corporations. invest in the united states. that means better living standards. we are already seeing that. as a result of more people going to work, wages going up, more
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taxes are coming in the door. that's why revenues are up. they may not be up among the sea ps, but thehe c cor growth it is producing, the people coming out of poverty paying taxes, that is really good. that is what this is producing. so let's keep our eye on the ball, which is we need to get control of our entitlement programs. the good news in that story is good reforms can mean that we can better fulfill the mission of these important programs, health and retirement security, without bankrupting the country. that's why the kinds of reforms we have been talking about are necessary. >> but that would depend upon -- even the senate did not agree with you -- that would depend upon having broader control of congress that you have had. >> we failed to pass our budget, our reform bill on health care
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by one vote in the senate. that is correct. >> what are the spring -- what are the prospects of raining that in? >> the election will have to that.ine if we keep the house majority, which i think we will, then you have to have a big and majority in the senate to pass health care reform. >> do people in janesville, do people in wisconsin, is that what they want? do they really want their benefits taken away or curtailed? >> i think they want to see an end to double-digit premium increases. they want to see medicare on a path to solvency. they do want to see 200 million people at a to medicare to accelerate its bankruptcy. if you take a look at our proposals, they would have lowered health-care premiums, preserved pre-existing conditions, done more to give people more choices. we are down to one or two choices in the individual
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market. our incremental projects on health care, since the building not pass, we got rid of the individual mandate, so we are not forcing people to buy something they don't want. our risk pool worked really well in wisconsin. >> is no longer there, but yes. >> it works really well in wisconsin. they got people pre-existing conditions a formal coverage. it dramatically lowered the premiums for everybody else in wisconsin. we are putting up back in place now and with federal funding. better stabilized health-insurance market in wisconsin as a result of the governor's new approved waiver to restart risk pools, which is what we wanted to get done a lot earlier. i'm glad that the governor is getting a waiver to do that. that will help us a letter wisconsin.
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>> in a way, doesn't that cement the aca as being around? is --hink what it does what is happening with the experience of the aca in wisconsin is so many counties are down to one or two plans to choose from and escalating premiums. if we can go to the pre-aca situation or we had a risk pool so that people with pre-existing conditions could get affordable coverage, like we had with hearst, than the rest of the individual market, more insurers will come into the marketplace and more competition to bring prices down. that is what we had before the aca. going through the waiver route, we have association health plans coming online now because of the administration. -- buy theirp health insurance in the
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wisconsin restaurant association or the national restaurant association together coverage. we moved to a more incremental approach to improve the situation because we did not at the big bill passed in the senate. >> but these big ideas seem really difficult. if they could not happen in these two years, how will they happen? >> like i said, we are getting things done. the risk pools are happening. the association health plans i just described are happening. >> but the really big ideas. >> that's why the senate will need a few more votes. >> you think that could happen. >> technically, just one. >> you think that could happen? >> absolutely. audience,we go to the i have to ask about you. >> here it comes. oh. >> what the heck are you going to do? >> i'm still here a speaker.
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i need to wait until i am finished and then spend time figuring it out. and i will spend plenty of time. i know will -- i know i will hunt a lot. i'm going to be a volleyball coach come january. [applause] i'm going to do those things and then figure it out. that i have to wait until i am done in my own mind to even look at those things. >> do you have any regrets about how this has taken place? >> no. i'm really at peace with things. for this job,ng but i am honored to have had this job. i am honored to have been able to get our team put together -- to put together an agenda, to take it to the country, and then have unified government and the opportunity to put this agenda in place. a have passed 853 bills, little more than that, about 860 bills in the house the session.
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that is an incredible pace. we haven't seen a kind of pace in decades. , since before bush i. the senate stated in august and they are getting a lot done. we are getting so many things done. we got tax reform done. we got regulatory redone. we got career technical education done. we got the poverty stuff that i have been working on for years done. we are this close on opioids. we are this close on our infrastructure bills. i really feel like we have had an enormously productive legislature. date is making an enormous, positive -- it is making an enormous, positive difference in people's jobs. in this phase and stage in my life and family, it is the perfect thing to be doing. >> i find it incredibly hard to believe you would divorce yourself from politics and policy. >> i won't divorce myself from politics and policy. i'm just going to not been congress anymore.
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i don't know exactly what that will be, but you can't completely divorce yourself. i am a cause guy. i will be working on the causes i care about in some capacity. >> will you not miss? >> what will i not miss? >> from this place. >> press events in the rayburn room. [laughter] i'm just missing with you, jeff. i actually like this. really, it's the travel and the schedule. been this week in amarillo, houston, dallas, chicago, and janesville. d.c. and southin bend before i get back on sunday. i will miss the travel. i'm gone a lot. -- i gotn spring break this job, 12 weeks more a year on average, and i'm a busy congressman.
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so i'm not going to miss the travel. >> what is your advice for the next speaker? >> cafe vision -- have a vision. get the team to agree to the vision. hold people accountable to it. set a timeline and execute. >> i think it is amazing. there were a lot of predictions that you would not survive as speaker. how did you avoid that? >> i've been around here a while. learned, just from observing -- first of all, i never wanted the job in the first place. me. kind of helped in the first guy in decades to have gone from being a committee chair to jumping over to this job. most people go up the elected leadership route, which was something i never wanted to do. i think that different perspective helped me a lot. getting our members to spend basically a year, 2015, to assemble an agenda that we would
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agree to assemble and run on and hold ourselves accountable for executing it, that organizing theory is how we were able to make this place work really well. --n you had fits were starts fits or starts, different factions in the gop, coalitions wanting to go -- it is coalition government. i run a coalition government without the efficiency of a parliamentary system. back to this is not the plan we agreed on. this is where we are going. paris agreement from members that are vision and our agenda would be x, y, and z, i was able to keep everybody z when on x, y, and people wanted to focus on a, b, and c. >> a plan actually helps. ok, let's go to the audience. we will try to fit some in. tim has a question.
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>> with connor doing now? -- what is connor doing now? [indiscernible] what advice would you give to companies in wisconsin? >> they know my answer to this question. talked to a lot of our employers in wisconsin. i tell people to hold on, to be patient, and to bear with the fact that there is a plan and a strategy with a good landing point. i am not a fan of tariffs. everybody knows that. that's not what i think -- i don't like tariffs. i think the idea though to get better agreements with our allies, north america and europe, and those conversations are ongoing and they have already yielded some good
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results, get a good agreement with our allies, that this is the 21st century, that we did need new agreements for the 21st century. get those in hand, get those done, then rally the developed world to join us to go confront china, to get china to play by the rules. because china steals european electoral -- intellectual property rights just like they still american intellectual property rights. us andmp shipments to the canadians -- to the canadians like they do to us. it's hardball. it is tariffs. it is tough talk. but if it results in good agreements with our allies in a tofied developed world front go get china to play by the rules, that is a pretty darn good outcome. i would say be patient for that. >> you are saying to farmers to be patient? >> yeah. i talk to a lot of farmers. i was talking to a buddy of mine
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who is a bean farmer back home. he is the one who said to me i'm going to be patient. i think what he is try to do is a good deal at the end of the day. i was talking with some elevator guys in wisconsin, talking to the guys who have the grain elevator. they don't like the soybean back and forth. but they like the endgame and the fact that the president is try to get a fair deal at the end of the day for the country. >> raise your hands if you have a question. go ahead, sir. summary with the mike is right there. -- someone with the mike is right there. >> i would like to get your comments on that and whether you think that will make it to the
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house. bill ona fan of jeb's gse's. his got so focused on committee on flood insurance reauthorization and the rewrite of dodd frank. so they ran out of time and space. i think that issue will carry over to the next session. >> is this a shy group? there you go. >> saw something the other day about may be making the tax cuts and tax reform permanent? >> that's coming up the last week of the month. -- help me.ns is when is the market? is a tomorrow? yeah, it's any day now. we have been having scheduling
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problems. ways and means will have a tomorrow. we are not in next week. to make the individual provisions permanent. cbond so, again, given that report, we can afford that? >> the think the economy could use a huge tax increase? if we were to let those tax increases occur, we would be taking the small business pass through tax rate at two 44.6% when corporations are 21%. that would be devastating for this economy. >> will your colleagues in the senate agree? >> i hope so. [laughter] it's not reconciled. we will see. >> other questions? go ahead. is this a health care
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hospital question? [laughter] >> it could be. may be i should go back to all the -- >> how have you been? i have not seen you for a while. >> ok. >> he is retiring. you too could have a party together. >> you have had a great run and you have been a lot of help for us at the marshall clinic. we appreciate all you done. what is your advice -- we picked up 30,000 almost 40,000 people on the federal exchange. a lot of people who are never covered before. what is your advice to the health industry, especially those of us who are working in the real world part of this thing. >> i thought -- i wish that bill could have become law. people could buy the health care insurance of their choosing and we could have risk pools nationwide so that people could have disease management and preventative management wherever
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they want, freeing up the health insurance markets to be far more competitive for everybody else so they can get lower rates. that is the goal here. i do believe that can be attained. we did not get the big bill passed like we discussed. since you are marshall than you are wisconsin, getting the waiver for wisconsin set up wrist pulls back, getting duration plans, getting association health plans in place. just the tavern lake, the reorders, the restauranteurs, and america there are so many people who are now in the individual market but work for small businesses that will have a chance a just because of those three reforms. we have better days ahead. could be even better if we could get a bigger bill passed, but we had better days ahead.
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>> about five minutes. tony.name is i can't help but think about the death of john mccain and his comments about the decline of regular order. 1986.o this town in the order has certainly broken down. and john mccain's last moments, he spoke about going back to the regular order. tell me more on your thoughts about the institutions you are leading. paul: good question. i am worried we're seeing a deinstitutionalization of society. not just in america, but the world. you can cite a lots of things.
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by the way, this is not one person, it is a society, the internet, the 21st century. i think the tribalism that has occurred has occurred for a handful of reasons. but one of the harder aspects of 21stis that 20's -- century technology has proven that tribalism is effective. more to the point, people make money off of it. i am a jacket cap guy -- jack kemp guy. what i mean when i say that is that aspirational inclusive politics, which tries to unify. but internet, money, has proven identity politics and tribalism works. it is morally wrong, but
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politically effective. what bothers me is it is prejudiced on both sides. as conservatives, we used to think this was a left-wing thing. unfortunately, now it is done all over. this is one of the things i want to spend time thinking about. i am busy time to get appropriations done. i do not think about this stuff too often. what i want to think about is how do you make inclusive, aspirational, unifying politics. the stuff i believe in, how do you make it strategically valuable? what wins campaigns, elections. you have to figure out how to beat tribalism. of right, but strategically the thing to do. and we have a ways to go.
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i just did a thing with a colleague who wrote a book on justice. think of himon't as somebody they should read, the people on the left should read this book as well. >> but that isn't going to happen this year. , but what are you asking me, 20 days? but this seems to be more negative than ever before. paul: i am a catholic, look at what is going on. the deinstitutionalization of critical core institutions of society are under duress, not just government. we have to do more on our own with our families and communities and other institutions to teach our kids how important they are. , i believenservative we needed to do more to free up space for civil society to
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reinsert itself in its rightful place. in that big expanse of space between ourselves and our government where we lead our lives. go to janesville. in that big expanse of space between ourselves and our government where we lead our all of these organizations, all of these groups, that is civil society. the churches, these things, they are shrinking. we need to do more as a society to breathe life into those things. one of the things. i am not tried to make is a right-left thing, but one of the to make sure i deserve that space so that government does not encroach upon it in the institutionalize it. but as a conservative, we have to stand up for the things we believe in and make sure that we are civil with one another. identity politics and tribalism is an affront to get. how is that?
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>> that is a good place to end on a lofty ideal. i thank you for being part of this, being part of the wisconsin politics events this year. paul: it has been great. >> you can always get into an event for free if you just call. [laughter] paul: thank you, i appreciate it. [applause] [indiscernible]
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>> here is what we are covering live thursday. the houses and at 10 a.m. eastern on c-span. on c-span2, the senate judiciary committee debates the supreme court nomination at 10 a.m. eastern. in the afternoon, the house foreign affairs committee takes theegislation requesting white house turn over all records regarding the meeting regarding president trump and vladimir putin. in the evening, former british secretary of state boris johnson speaks at the american enterprise institute. , the ways and means committee works on new tax legislation. >>