tv Newsmakers with Representative Steny Hoyer CSPAN January 15, 2017 10:00am-10:35am EST
host: from last night's "saturday night live," back for the new season this january. thanks for being with us. our inauguration coverage begins at 7:00 a.m. on friday morning on c-span, a full day of coverage. we will give you a rent proceeds to the proceedings as donald trump is sworn in as our 45th resident. "newsmakers" is next. enjoy the rest of your weekend. have a great week ahead. ♪ [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> next, "newsmakers" with house minority leader steny hoyer.
in the confirmation hearing for alabama senator jeff sessions. then rex tillerson testifies to become secretary of state. our guest this week is maryland us steny hoyer, the number two in leadership among the democrats in the house of representatives. he joins us on a very busy friday from a studio inside the capital. thank you for being our guest. mr. hoyer: always good to be with you. host: the associated press chief reporter and the reporter from the washington post. reporter: with the vote in the house today setting the stage for repealing the health care law, we would like to know what the democrats posture is going to be as far as replacing the law. will you cooperate with republicans on that endeavor? mr. hoyer: our position as we
-- against of you appeal. that does not mean we are against making the affordable care act better, more effective, higher savings, more accessibility. it is to say there ought not to be a repeal before you have an you improve orw from the republicans standpoint, replace. you ought not to repeal and that is what the republicans have been attempting to do, i guess this is the 65th or 66th opportunity for them to do so but they have taken it and they have not replaced it. they have no fix it -- no fixes to make it better or to make sure americans have health care security. that is what concerns us greatly. it's not a question of cooperating with republicans on repeal, which is there stated objective, the stated objective
of the president-elect and the leaders in the congress. we are not for that. be willing, as we have been for the last seven years, willing to work with our republican colleagues on how you make sure americans have as good a system as they need to have health care security. reporter: thank you for doing this. your colleagues in the senate have said they would like to see republicans come up with their own replacement options first they are responding to an offer from republicans. do you agree with that? mr. hoyer: we have not seen any alternatives and we share our colleagues in the senate's position, show us what you want to replace it with. show us how you want to get to americans health care security. we're not just talking about people in the exchanges, we're talking about all americans with
health care insurance and those who do not. we are saying show us the beef. show us your alternative. show us how you are going to do it trump says to give you the best health care coverage ever. that's easy to say. how we werew us going to do that. in a recent kaiser poll, 80% of americans who responded said you need to have a replacement before you have an appeal and that's what we are saying. one problem the affordable care act has had is congress has not been able to appropriately adjusted, proven -- and prove it, and tinker with the because republicans have refused to do so. mr. hoyer: correct. reporter: one reason is democrats pushed it through on a
partisan basis without any republican votes at all. do you now view that as a mistake? mr. hoyer: no. i think it was a mistake we didn't have any republican by and on their part. they decided early on that they were going to take a partisan position and not cooperate with the president. fact, you may recall that senator
baucus who was the chairman of the finance committee tried to work with senator grassley and gave senator grassley eight months. senator grassley said let me see if i can cooperate, let me see what alternatives we believe would be credible. eight months into that waiting on senator grassley, he said no. so the republicans had every opportunity to consider this in committee. amendments were offered in committees. there was no rush to judgment on the bill, no shutting
republicans out of negotiations or the ability to offer amendments. my view is we were prepared during the course of the adoption of the affordable care act and we have been prepared ever since to work into -- work on improving the product. cantorl recall eric offered a
proposal, brought it to the floor and was about to have it come forward on the made sureh would have one of the emergency provisions we put in the law which had not been funded sufficiently, his effort was to take money from one part of the aca and put it in another section. foundation opposed that effort, the freedom caucus opposed it.
it wouldsed it because make the afford will care act did not want to make it better. what they wanted to do was repeal it. hand at the of democrats were unwilling to work in a bipartisan fashion to adopt what almost everybody thinks is necessary, and that is to have a health care system that makes sure every american has the kind of coverage they need so that when they have a serious illness, they and their families are not put into bankruptcy. seriously, lose their lives because they were unable to get health care. coulder: i wonderfully look forward to the spending bill that will be coming up with the deadline at the end of april. do you worry there's a chance republicans will use that opportunity to get us through the end of the fiscal year to push for additional money for
borderless security -- border security. mr. hoyer: i'm not sure what they are going to push for, but the fact of the matter is, unfortunately, we have another short-term funding bill the republicans demanded in the last congress. the year before that, we had an omnibus and funded the government which game -- which gave some stability and predict ability to the operations. unfortunately, for technical reasons, the republicans decided not to do that. a pop it would have more leverage. and in fact they do have more leverage. want to cometors to a bipartisan agreement both in the house and the senate, but i am hopeful speaker ryan and leader mcconnell work with the democratic leadership and democratic members to come up with a funding bill which will take us through september 30, the end of the fiscal year,
a bipartisan bill and not a partisan confrontation. reporter: if republicans do use the opportunity, as some gop members and transition team officials have signaled they might to put a down payment on the border wall, how will democrats respond? would you oppose that even if a government shutdown is looming? senate passed a conference of immigration reform bill in which they provided for border security and a system to get us to a border which was secure, not porous, and we therefore knew was coming into our country. i think there is universal agreement that is absolutely essential for this country tonight who comes into this over theirs control borders. i don't think there's any dispute, it's just how you get done. there are many experts that
think this wall will not be as effective as donald trump says it will be and, it is ironic that donald trump who asserted emphatically and repeatedly that mexicans were going to pay for , in wall, that now conjunction with the republican leadership, going to ask the taxpayers to pay for this wall. but we will see what they propose. order security is a high priority for democrats and a high-priority for republicans and a high priority for the american people. we will have discussions about how best to attain that, but unfortunately, the comprehensive immigration bill, which is very much a part of border security in my view was rejected out of hand by the republican leadership. you touch on something that is important going forward -- there's a perception of what
the president-elect has promised people and that we are starting to see signs there's a difference what was promised and what seems to be coming down the pipeline legislatively. how can democrats telegraph to voters that there is a divide here and take advantage of the situation? in politics, perception is reality in a lot of ways. how do you regain the perception that you guys have the right answer? mr. hoyer: somebody said, and it's a very catchy phrase, himld trump's voters took .eriously some of his supporters said it is pie-in-the-sky we don't believe we's -- we don't believe he is going to do that but will like the fact that he says it. we like the fact that is his objective. right, perception is reality, but if a candidate says
and going to do this, i'm going to do that, going to provide you with the best health care any greaty has ever had, infrastructure, we are going to build up the fence and cut taxes , any rational human being would understand all the objectives the president-elect put forward were not attainable as a manner.l, real life maybe some more attainable but not all of them together. we democrats have a responsibility to tell the american people the truth. we have a responsibility to say this proposal will not work. but we also have a responsibility to put forward alternatives that we think will work and i think that's what we will clearly do. reporter: me ask a follow-up to that. any soul-searching any party does after an election, i know you're party is doing that, but
the kinds of questions that need to be asked, they philosophical, operational or tactical? allhoyer: i think they are of those. philosophically, i have said the republicans operating philosophy is the country will be better off if everyone is left to their own devices, essentially and the less role government plays, the more successful the economy will be, the more successful the country will be. our philosophy is we are in this together. we understand that to the extent we make sure everybody in our country does well, has the opportunity to succeed, has education in good health care, availability of housing for their families, and the availability to get the education to make not only their own lives better but there -- but the corporate life of the country better, i think that's a
philosophical difference between the two parties. , we believethat very strongly in the free market. market hase free proven itself as the most successful way to manage an economy for the greatest number. other economies did not work and have failed. but we are in this together. we need to make sure our fellow citizens do have health care, do have an opportunity to have an education to the extent of their abilities and kids. that is the philosophical difference. is thetical difference republicans made a determination when barack obama became president to oppose it. mitch mcconnell said what was his most important objective over the next four years? it was to defeat barack obama for reelection, as opposed to working with barack obama to create jobs, initially to stop the hemorrhaging of jobs that
-- 878,000 jobs the first month of the obama presidency or because of -- the last month of the bush administration which emerged 400,000 jobs that year. to make sure the environment and climate change were addressed. not to make sure we had the strongest defense we could have an defeat terrorists, but to defeat obama. that was strategy and we certainly disagree with that. we are going to be prepared to work with the president-elect if we think his policies are positive for the american people, not simply knee-jerk opposition for opposition's sake. reporter: trump gave democrats area as of hope on places like
trade, infrastructure and particular, couple of financial and regulatory issues where there could be common ground. seemed to havep more agreements with democrats than republicans. based on what you have seen so far, are you hopeful of dealmaking in those areas? mr. hoyer: i certainly am hopeful. president-elect trump essentially does not seem to ase an operating philosophy opposed to a transactional approach to dealing with issues. howhat, i mean what works, do i accomplish the objectives i want to accomplish? as a builder, that has been his life experience. how do i get this job done as opposed to philosophically saying this is where i stand and i'm not going to move whether it works or not. i think that gives us some hope. some opportunities may present
themselves where we could work together toward a common and. agree with you that his stated disagreement with the republican leadership of the united states and frankly paul ryan has pointed that out. not so much mitch mcconnell paul ryan has pointed out during the campaign. to be open to working together where we can on behalf of the american people, on behalf of the strength of our country's economy. let's get to more of the politics internally of the house democrats. there was a test up last year as you guys were going to the process of making decisions about your leadership that the party was not reflecting -- the leadership was not reflecting the values you hoped to translate to the public. do you think the changes made at
,he lower level of leadership can they speak to the american people and tell them what democrats embrace or to further changes need to be made to make sure you don't see the party is a group of coastal elites who are out of touch with much -- with what might be happening in the heartland? mr. hoyer: we ought not to be coastal elites and i don't think we are necessarily -- that's inaccurate -- we are not coastal elites. democrats have been elected on the coast, both the atlantic and pacific in greater numbers and the majority of our party is there and it is of great concern wet average working people, perceive ourselves to be and we are the party of average working people and we work every day to make their lives better, more we give them more opportunities. but there is no doubt working men and women in this country
have had a very tough time over the last 30 years. grown,global economy has and the competition has grown from overseas on low-wage workers, there's no doubt that there has been a challenge. in addition, average working people who are used to work -- used to making things, i have an agenda focused on expanding manufacturing in america, providing good paying jobs which have security for average working americans. the fact of the matter is technology, computers, robots, technology has displaced probably more people than is alleged for trade to have displaced. we have manufacturing facility that manufactured goods with one half of the numbers of people
that they had historically. challengeeen a real for individuals and families and they are upset by that and they ought to be upset by that. attentiono focus our on making sure every american can make it in america and their families can make it in america. clear.at message is it was a lot of frustration and anger. it manifested itself in voting for someone who told them he was going to make it all better. it's easy to say you're going to make it all better. we will see what his policies are. but there are areas we have been promoting that president-elect trump is talking about. in infrastructure, we think that is a critical thing to do. the american recovery and reinvestment act with no help from the republicans in the house of representatives.
area we may be able to work together to give comfort to whether they live on the coast were between the two coasts. donald trump was able to claim the populist mantle during the campaign and have political success from that. bringing it back to the politics of the health care law, a lot of people feel like democrats have had to pay politically high prices for passing that law and losing majorities in the house and senate. i'm wondering if you see a political opening if republicans are going to be the ones that come to him the health care system and all the problems that it inevitably had? can that be helpful to democrats politically? i think it can be helpful, but i want to stress democrats are ready to work with the president-elect, the republican leadership in house
and senate to constructively make the health care system a better system. we don't contend the affordable care act was perfect. we do content it has had substantial, positive effect on health care on millions and millions of americans not only in the exchanges or in medicaid, but in the private sector insurance through employers. however, it's not perfect and we are prepared to work together. the politics, americans ought to look at who wants to work constructively. is themy frustrations american public was very upset with congress over the last three terms and rightfully so. i think it was largely unproductive and frankly, i was disappointed they kept collecting the same leadership to that congress. say they didn't agree
with the affordable care act, you rememberbut john boehner after the 2012 elections, one of the big issue was the affordable care act and it was obamacare. who was elected with over 50% of the boat -- 50% of the vote? barack obama. in that vote, the affordable care act one and the republicans talk about repealing obamacare and the president-elect talked about defeating obamacare. the majority of americans by almost 3 million more votes than who voted for trump voted for the candidate who said she was going to keep and improve the affordable care act. from that standpoint, i think democrats can be confident we are representing the majority view as expressed in the 2012 election and the 2016 election for president. that does not mean i'm questioning trump's election,
just as al gore experienced, the electoral college controls who is elected president. but the american people by a significant majority voted for the candidate who is going to continue the affordable care act. reporter: i would follow up by asking if you reject the idea that republicans have a mandate to repeal the affordable care act? mr. hoyer: absolutely. they don't have any mandate to just repeal it as paul ryan said yesterday and president-elect trump said a few days before that. of course we are going to have an alternative and it's going to be contemporaneous with our repealing it. have that inot front of us. we did not have it first 60 four times they tried to repeal it or portions thereof and it remains to be seen what they are going to come up with.
is cheap, performance is tougher and the american people ought to be looking at what are they saying they are going to do to make sure we have the affordable care we need to stay healthy and stay alive. do you have concerns over democrats relevance the next two to four years given that you are in the minority of house and senate and you no longer have the president and the veto that gives you leverage and congressional negotiations under obama? were very i think we relevant in 2005 and 2006 and we took back the majority and we were relevant because people did not agree with many of the policies george bush had put forward. the way the economy was operating. we were contrasting our policies with the republican policies and
i think we are very relevant in every aspect of the issues that are going to be considered by this congress and by this president over the next two years. frankly, we picked up seats in both the house and the senate. did we take the majority? we did not. got less as though we victories than the republican scott. we picked up seats and have a net appreciation of votes and we are moving forward. the party in opposition to that seats, so we are going to be relevant. we will raise issues we think the american people agree with us on those issues. hillary clinton got almost 3 million more votes than donald trump for the policies we have been pursuing and emoting and supporting. changer: will you tactics when the new president
seems to be a twitter or in chief? mr. hoyer: we will try to communicate with the american people in everyday -- in every way we can, including twitter. host: thank you very much. let's start at the beginning when mr. hoyer said democrats are opposed to repeal. as you are watching this tactically shape up in the house and senate, there are republicans expressing concern about repeal without a replacement in mine. where do you see this debate going and what the outcome going to be? this is one of those situations where we wondered if the repeal vote was going to make it through and to watch republicans be so skeptical that they would threaten it at the front and makes me think they are very likely to first of all missed the deadline day attached for themselves to write a repeal thanand it may be harder
they realized to even get their own party to coalesce around ideas. it may take them much longer than they anticipate. host: where does it all go then? reporter: i think that's unclear. i agree with everything kelsey just said. the republicans are like the dog that caught the bus with this health care situation and there is something to that. they did not think they were going to win the presidential election and now they have no choice but to make good on their millions of promises of repealing the health care bill as they have been talking about it nonstop. they can't not do it. but they're going to have a very hard time replacing it. they have numerous different plans. paul ryan will tell you they do havea plan but they don't one built sales support that can get through the senate with 60 votes including democrats and that's going to be difficult. on of your questions
percent or ground the relevance and the power of democrats in both houses. not justs do they have to oppose republicans but their own ideas? the have the opportunity to take advantage of the number of people who were upset and feel like the election did not work out the way they anticipated. we've seen a situation where a groundswell for support can change minds or influence what the president-elect thinks. we saw that with the ethics vote house publicans took to dismantle in a closed-door session or underline an outside ethics watchdog. and withingot upset two hours, republicans change their minds. democrats can feed that and it can work out well to their advantage. host: it seems as though there might be common ground areas. there was a strong statement about securing the border.
it's a question of how. reporter: immigration is an issue where it is hard to see a lot getting done based on experience under the obama administration where there was a bill that passed the senate in 2013 and failed house. the parties tend to mean different things we talk about securing the border. it's something everyone can 100% say they agree on but when you talk about how to actually do it, it turns out they don't really agree. we will see. i think infrastructure is a right area for agreement, but what is interesting in the way trump and the republicans in congress have started out is they are emphasizing those areas where republicans kind of agree among themselves and are leaving democrats out so far. toy have yet to get
infrastructure or any other area where there is more bipartisan potential. into we are heading inauguration week. what's the capital going to be like? reporter: i think it will be a little bit quieter than this past week. out, so we are looking toward the week where the senate will dominate and take their traditionally slow senate pace of handling things. confirmation hearings will continue. can you give us a sense of what the mood is like at the capital right now? reporter: it's hard to sum it up. it is frenzied. there's a lot of excitement among republicans but there's also a lot of uncertainty. are watching day today to see what their new president is going to be like. or they going to wake up to a tweet telling them to do x, y, or z?
there's a lot of uncharted territory, so it is an interesting time to be a reporter. you tohanks to both of returning to "newsmakers" this week. continues to follow president-elect trump and his new administration on the road to the white house. trump tower5, from come a conversation with two key trump administration staffers, kellyanne conway and sean spicer talk about their new white house position, their life and career in politics, and what we can expect from a president donald trump. first, we sit down with kellyanne conway, campaign manager for trump and pence and incoming counselor. into a set ofg it values and that is liberating.
>> then sean spicer on his new role as incoming white house director and press secretary. our a fleisher, dana perino, even marlon fitzwater, everyone who held this job has gone back and reached out and offered their advice and counsel. it's a pretty humbling experience when you realize you are in a club of 30 people who have held this position. beginning at 6:35 eastern on c-span and c-span.org. or listen on the c-span radio app. >> the budget is not actually legally binding. it is not a law. it has a guidance of what you are supposed to do and there are no repercussions if the budget is not followed. we passed the budget and then went and lived through the budget last year. on theght, the president
committee for the responsible federal budget talks about the process and what to expect from the trump administration. >> this issue is so hard for politicians to vote the right and doingg for things less or not paying for things and doing more. we borrow hundreds of millions of dollars a year. that makes sense when you are in a recession. not be borrowing as much as we are now. we have to make these hard changes and they involve straight up raising taxes, cutting benefits or reform entitlements. those are things every pollster tells the politicians to stay away from. >> on tuesday, the senate judiciary committee began a two-day confirmation hearing for alabama senator jeff sessions. been nominated to become the next attorney general of the united states. this portion from day one is two hours.