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Mitch McConnell
  Campaign 2018 Senate Majority Leader Mc Connell Post- Election News Conference  CSPAN  November 7, 2018 5:46pm-6:05pm EST

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because we believe this god's creation. when we build the infrastructure, we have to do so in a great way -- greenway. for these and other reasons, i look forward to working with you along the way. we are excited about our new members who will be coming next week to start in the new congress. thank you very much.
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>> good morning, everyone. i had one of the cable networks on this morning say this is probably a rare opportunity to see mcconnell smile. it is indeed a good morning for senate republicans. thenurse, for/night and this morning, i talked to leader pelosi and we discussed ways we might -- ways we might be able to find a way forward. n opportunity to work together a number of years. so, we are not unfamiliar with each other.
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we probably had a lot more dealings with each other. i want to thank the president. he was extremely helpful to us in states where he is in -- to us. in states where he is an excellent shape, he worked very hard and i believe it had an impact on the outcome. >> do you agree with the president's campaign rhetoric that birthright citizenship should be dealt with at a presidential level? >> i would be happy to give you my own views, but i generally don't do comment on the president's observations on the campaign trail. it ultimately i assume would be solved in the courts. >> the president said he would
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be willing to work with a with loc. what do you believe now are the top legislative priorities? finish this have to session. we have a number of items. we have the farm bill. we have funding the government. the one issue that leader pelosi and i discussed this morning would be something on infrastructure. it could be a lot of other things. i'm not putting you all down, but when we things together, it almost never makes any news. even in this current situation where we have republicans controlling all three branches, i have a long list of things we did on a bipartisan basis. the best appropriations process in 20 years. , on andinfrastructure
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on and on. there are plenty of things we have worked together on. had differences over things like taxes and judges, there were plenty of other things we did together and there is no reason that would stop. >> what big issues are you? -- are there? >> we will see. >> [inaudible] $5 billion for the president's border wall? what will try to achieve he wants done on border security and that will have to be done on a bipartisan discussion. have any observations
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on the kavanaugh affect? >> very helpful. republicans were core voters in states for us. i think it was like an adrenaline shot. i think the kavanaugh fight was extremely helpful. -- s noteworthy . president.ited the what kind of impact do you think ,he president's rhetoric particularly with women voters voters in those key races? i will try not to have us
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waste our time on routine questions about what the president may say at the -- at any given moment. i him here -- i am here to talk about the senate. we had a good day. i am proud of what has happened. the president was helpful to us. the exit look at polls, one of the most important issues with health care. did you take away from that the message that any effort to repeal a ca at this point is dead? ? at this point is dead? it is obvious the democratic house is not going to be interested in that. they need to get fixed -- get it fixed. they raised the issue of whether or not we were for or against pre-existing conditions. they tried to define health care on that issue.
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the rhetoric does not solve the problem. there are serious problems with obamacare and we are going to have to address that on a bipartisan basis. both leader pelosi and the president talked about fighting high prescription drug prices. do you think that is something that they work on? >> i cannot imagine that would not be on the agenda. is there anything senate what would senate republicans do in the event y to obtainrats trie president trump's tax record? s? >> the issue of presidential
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harassment is interesting. i remember when we tried it in the late 1990's. we reached president clinton. his numbers went up and ours went down. the democrats in the house will have to decide how much presidential harassment a will have to -- they think is good. i'm not so sure it will work for them. to go back to that, are you recommending for house democrats that the oversight might backfire on them? they are not interested in my recommendations. i and making a historical observation. the business of presidential --assment improved in the improved the president's approval rating in the 1990's. it is up to them to decide how they want to handle that. >> is there anything you will be doing and the coming months to increase the number of women who are being recruited on the republican side to run for
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office? >> it has been frustrating. we have had plenty of women candidates. we are hopeful martha mcsally will win. onell be trying to convince of our women to go on that judiciary committee, something i have tried and failed the last couple of congresses. a better job of recruiting women candidates and getting them elected. hopefully, we will have two new republican senators here shortly. talking about the house edersight, the president tweet this morning, that if the house continues their investigation, we will likewise be forced to consider investigating them over classified information leaks. can you respond to that?
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>> i would like to focus on finishing this session. we have left to do and like to see what happens next. >> have you had discussions with the president about that? can you rule out a government shutdown? >> we need to work this out. we have the most successful appropriations process already in 20 years. 75% of the government was funded before the end of september. we need to work together toward the end to finish that up. we are going to do the best we can to try to achieve the president's priorities and hopefully, we will not be headed down that path. doing a o you think of daca fix? i cannot imagine with all the
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things we have to do here to wrap up this congress, that we would revisit immigration. who knows? it is on the agenda. every year we have serious immigration issues. i would remind you all, the democrats had total control of 2009overnment in 29 -- and 2010 and never dealt with immigration. it seems a matter who is up or down, without able to come to a conclusion about what to do on immigration. the one thing i thought we agreed on was border security. most democrats voted for it 10 years ago. we have had a challenge on that as well. i cannot imagine we would do anything beyond trying to deal with this funding issue on the
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wall at the end of the session. a realpresident has made issue out the migrant caravan and the crisis at the border. president,ith the that it was a crisis -- do you agree with the president, that it was a crisis? that is an executive branch issue, how to deploy security forces to deal with that. i'm sure the president will handle it. it is not a legislative issue. it is a question of how you want to deal with security at the border. the president has latitude to do that and he is taking advantage of the opportunity. engage incrats aggressive oversight of the
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trump administration, and keep your ability to work with speaker pelosi on things like infrastructure? >> no. judge inlth care, if a texas rules to strike down -- all or part of obamacare, how will people respond? >> health care is still a pretty big mess. it is going to have to be addressed on a bipartisan basis. the democrats will control the house. i don't think anybody is satisfied with the status quo. the american people have given us a divided government, which they have given us since world war ii. they seem to like divided government. the message is figure out what you can do together and do it. health care is a crisis and
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needs to be fixed. think it is an issue to undermine the president and is there potential to get out in onnt of the special counsel this? >> on the senate side, the intelligence committee has been looking at that issue. we expect them to report at some point in the future. so far, they have operated on bipartisan basis -- on a bipartisan basis. i look for to hearing what they have to say. to them aboutoken their races? i tradedor scott and calls last night. not spoken to martha mcsally, although we traded calls pretty late at night. i decided to go to bed and talk to her this morning. you were going to have extra
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seats on the senate side. what will that enable you to do? is, i made itrity clear. the judiciary, the two supreme court appointments, overall number of judges. we are not through doing those this year. the president i think has done an excellent job of taking young men and women who believe the job of the judge is to follow the law and we intend to keep confirming as many as we possibly can for as long as were in a position -- for as long as we are in a position to do it. will you revisit your comments about entitlements this past week? they areade it clear
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not interested in dealing with entitlements. i do not think that will be on the agenda. >> your remarks? >> i have no idea. i have not really thought of that. we have a conference role related to earmarks on the senate side. i cannot imagine that will change. tax cut for the middle class be on your agenda next congress? sidey effort on the tax would have to be negotiated on a bipartisan basis. whatll just have to see they want to do in this area. we would have to do it together. we would not have the possibility to do it on a partyline basis. changes in thehe administration that are
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expected, can you give your view on what the confirmation battle -- battleground might look like? fillou confident you could a vacancy at the department of justice? would it be up valuable time? probably have more time for nominations in the next congress then we have had in this one. the areas of legislative agreement will be more limited obviously, between democratic and house republican senate -- between a democratic house and a republican senate i do not think we will have trouble finding time to do nominations. them.l process
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-- will bekes changes, we dealing with whoever is set up. -- thepresident democrats will be testing the waters the next couple of months. what effect will that have on the president's reelection? it will be fun to watch the democratic presidential , of which we have a number in the senate. chuck may have attendance problems from time to time. it will be interesting to watch. >> do you plan on running for reelection? >> i do. >> are you confident president trump willpo