Skip to main content

Charles Schumer
  Congressional Democrats on Infrastructure at White House  CSPAN  April 30, 2019 9:10pm-9:19pm EDT

9:10 pm
isspan's the president available as a hardcover or an e-book. wednesday, attorney general william barr will testify before the senate judiciary committee before the mueller report and on thursday, he will testify before the house judiciary committee live on c-span3. house speaker nancy pelosi and senate minority leader chuck schumer met with president trump the country's infrastructure needs and a potential plan that both sides could agree on. afterwards, they spoke to reporters about the process
9:11 pm
moving toward. ms. pelosi: good afternoon, everyone. we just had a very productive meeting with the president of the united states. we came to this meeting with an understanding that there is great need in our country for rebuilding our infrastructure with the recognition that we stand at a pivotal place in terms of building infrastructure for the future. it's about jobs, jobs, jobs. about promoting commerce. it's about clean air, clean water. so therefore it is a public health issue. quality of life issue, getting people out of their cars and not being on the roads so much. and in every way, it's a safety issue. so we are very excited about the conversation we had with the president to advance an agenda of that kind. we did come to one agreement that the agreements would be big and bold. our distinguished leader from
9:12 pm
the senate will announce how big and how bold. senator schumer: thanks. [laughter] ms. pelosi: and what remains to be seen -- we agreed we would meet again to talk about how it would be paid for. but we are very pleased with the positive attitude towards recognizing the trillions of according to the american society of civil engineers, the deficit that we have in our infrastructure. and now we have the opportunity to work together in a bipartisan way building infrastructure for america has never been a partisan issue and we hope to go forward in a very nonpartisan way for the future. with that, i'm pleased to yield to the distinguished the gentleman from senate. senator schumer: it was a very constructive meeting. it's clear that both the white house and all of us want to get something done on infrastructure in a big and bold way. and there was goodwill in this meeting and that was different from some of the other meetings
9:13 pm
which we have had, which is a very good thing. first, we agreed that infrastructure is crucial to the future of america. we agreed it creates jobs. we agreed it keeps us competitive. we agreed that for 25 years, this kind of big, bold bill we could pass would make a better place. this is not a one year or two year. we agreed on a number, which was very good. $2 trillion for infrastructure. originally, we started lower and even the president pushed it up to $2 trillion and that is have -- that is a very good thing. obviously, the roads and the bridges and the highways, obviously, water, but also a big emphasis on broadband that every american home needs broadband and emphasis on the power grid to bring clean energy from one end of the country to the other and several other issues. we told the president that we needed his ideas on funding, that the last bill he proposed, which, a was smaller, but b took as much money away as it put in, wasn't going to work. so where does he propose that we can fund this? because certainly in the senate,
9:14 pm
if we don't have him on board, it will be very hard to get the senate to go along. we said we would meet in three weeks and he would present some of his ideas on funding. so this was a very, very good start and we hope this will go to a constructive conclusion. reporter: how hard is it to work with this president on infrastructure when he is stonewalling you on investigations? ms. pelosi: obviously, we are here to do something for the american people. we have said all along in our for the people agenda that we ran on, that we were there to lower the costs of health care
9:15 pm
for the american people, by lowering the costs of prescription drugs and hope to work with the president on that. we said we are lowering health care costs and bigger paychecks by building infrastructure of america and we talked about cleaner government. so the first two we think we can work with the president on. while we may have our difficulties in other areas. we cannot ignore the needs of the american people as we go forward. [indiscernible chatter] reporter: did that issue come up in this conversation? ms. pelosi: no. you can ask the same question of the senate leadership. reporter: right after the midterms, the president said he wouldn't be able to work with you if you are simultaneously investigating him. can ask you, what is a bigger priority for democrats, investigating the president?
9:16 pm
ms. pelosi: our priority is to honor our responsibilities under the constitution of the united states to meet the needs of the american people and to honor our oath of office. senator schumer: in previous meetings, the president has said if these investigations continue i can't be working with you. he didn't bring it up. we can come up with some good ideas on infrastructure and we want to hear his ideas on funding. that's going to be the crucial point in my opinion. and the house and the senate can proceed in its oversight responsibilities. the two are not mutually exclusive and we are glad he didn't make it that way. we'll take one more. ms. pelosi? pelosi: what has
9:17 pm
happened? you all turned into shouters. senator schumer: last question. ms. pelosi: i'll take one from a woman. reporter: [indiscernible] ms. pelosi: we have some of our leadership here and i have a rule when i go to a meeting with many members and that rule is, the purpose of the meeting is not to criticize the president of the united states and secondly that every person has a , chance to say what he or she came to say. so this is a collaborative effort and we hope it will be very bipartisan. but we will be meeting next about how it's paid for and that will engage the secretary of the treasury among others and the leadership in the ways and means and transportation committee. but some of it will spring from the committees of jurisdiction. for example, the transportation and infrastructure committee, which has its own funding mechanism. this is a technical question.
9:18 pm
but everybody who is appropriate to the solution will be involved. senator schumer: the last thing we are going to say we agreed , that the same group would meet in about three weeks and the president would present his ideas on funding and we would take it from there and if we had to break up in smaller groups after that, we would. ms. pelosi: i want you to take this home with you because one really important advance that we made in this meeting was the president acceptance or maybe just agreement, i won't say acceptance because he may have been thinking about this all along is that infrastructure should include broadband. and it's important to health care and it's to education and important to commerce. and his embrace of that in addition to transportation and water issues was very important. senator schumer: thank you very
9:19 pm
much, everybody. >> here's a look at her live coverage on wednesday. on c-span, the housemates are 10:00 eastern for general speeches. members will begin work on a bill that requires the president to come up with a plan on climate change. on c-span two, the senate is eliminationsder for digital districts -- judicial districts in alabama and texas.