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tv   Reps Omar Pressley Ocasio- Cortez Tlaib Hold News Conference  CSPAN  July 16, 2019 6:36am-7:00am EDT

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>> in response to the president's tweets and recent comments, democratic representatives ayanna pressley, omar,nt omar, -- ilhan rashida taleo and alexandria ocasio-cortez held a press conference.
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xenophobicace of the remarks from the occupant of our white house. i will always refer to them as he is only occupying space, he does not embody the grace, empathy, the compassion, the integrity that that office requires and the american people deserve. that being said, i encourage the american people and all of us in this room and beyond to not take the bait. distractionsruptive concern issues of care, and consequence to the american
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people. that we were sent here with a decisive mandate from our constituents to work on. everything from reducing the cost of prescription drugs to addressing affordable housing crisis. peoplering the american have more than health insurance, but health care. more recently, thanks to the partnership of chairman elijah cummings and the advocacy of myself and a coalition of advocates, we held the first hearing for childhood trauma and sitting in that hearing as we heard about the many manifestations and iterations of childhood trauma in the wake of the public health crisis and epidemic that is gun violence, in the wake of ptsd, in the wake of those battling substance abuse disorders and a host of other things, it was impossible
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not to think of the trauma inflicted upon children every day at our border. at the end of the day, if we approve -- improve the conditions of children in a cage, they are still in a cage. we are viscerally, vigorously and fundamentally opposed to the criminalizing, vilifying, mass detention and deportation of migrant families for simply doing what is their legal right, to seek asylum. in the tradition of who we say we are as a country, a beacon of refuge,d hope and of this is simply a disruption and a distraction from the callused, chaotic and corrupt culture of this administration all the way down. we want to get back to the business of the american people and why we were sent here,
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reducing the cost of prescription drugs, addressing public health crisis and violence,hat is gun addressing the racial wealth gap. and yes, making sure families stay together. i would also like to underscore the fact that despite the occupant of the white house's attempt to marginalize in silence us, please note that we are more than four people. we ran on a mandate to advocate for and represent those left out and left behind. our squad is big, our squad includes any person committed to building a more equitable and just world. that is the work we want to get back to. and given the size of this squad cannots great nation, we , we will not be silent. now i will invite representative
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omar to offer words as well. omar: thank you congresswoman presley. this country was founded on the radical idea but we are created equal and endowed by our creator with inalienable rights. yes we have a long way before we fully live up to those values. preciselythis reason but we have to take action when a president is openly violating the oath he took to the constitution of the united states and the core values we aspire to. ,s martin luther king said always say to america is the true to what you say on paper. i believe this is a moment in our country. the eyes of history are watching
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us. right now, the president is carrying out mass deportations across this country in each one of our districts. right now, the president is committing human rights abuses at the border, keeping children in cages, and having human beings drinking out of toilets. beenpresident, who has credibly accused of committing multiple crimes, including colluding with foreign government to interfere with our election, this is a president who has overseen the most corrupt administration in our history and pursued an agenda to allow millions of americans to die from a lack of health care while he transfers millions of dollars in tax cuts to corporations. has said president who grab women by the pussy.
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ofcalled black athletes sons -- president who has equated neo-nazis with those who protest against them in charlottesville. this is a president who has openly violated the very value our country aspires to uphold, equality under the law, religious liberty, equal protections and protection from persecution. to distract from that, he is launching a blatantly racist electedn four duly members of the united states house of representatives, all of whom are women of color. this is the agenda of white nationalists, whether it is happening in chat rooms or
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happening on national tv and now it's reached the white house garden. he would love nothing more than to divide our country based on race, religion, gender, orientation, or immigration status. because this is the only way he knows he can prevent the solidarity of us working together across all of our differences. the only way to prevent us confronting the problems our country is facing, whether it is health care, climate change, student debt, or our endless wars. this is his plan to pit us against one another. this is how he can continue to enrich his friends and distract us from the detrimental policies that his administration is pushing forward. so we can either continue to
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enable this president and report on the garbage that comes out of his mouth, or we can hold him accountable to his crimes. we can continue to turn a blind eye of the multiple crimes he's accused of. we can stand while he violates people's rights and the responsibility that his administration has for the deaths of children on our border, or we can take action. i have not made impeachment central to my election or my tenure, but since the day that i've gotten elected, i said to people, it is not -- if he will be impeached but when, so it's time for us to stop allowing this president to make a mockery out of our constitution.
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it's time for us to impeach this president. so now we're going to have alexandria ocasio-cortez. -- congresswoman alexandria ocasio-cortez. rep. ocasio-cortez: good afternoon, everyone. i'll try to keep things as brief, i guess, as i can. who knows when i get on a roll. when i was a little girl, my father took me to the reflecting pool here. we were on a road trip from new york to florida to visit family, and i told this story before but it was my first time ever visiting washington, d.c. it was my only time visiting washington, d.c., for years, if not decades.
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and he rested me on the side of the reflection pool and had my toes dip in the water and he had me look at the washington monument, had me look at the capitol, had me look at the entirety of the capital of our great country. and he looked at everything and he pointed to all of it and he said, this belongs to all of us. this belongs to you, and it belongs to me. so the first note i want to tell children across this country is that no matter what the president says, this country belongs to you. and it belongs to everyone. and today, that notion, that very notion was challenged. this weekend, that very notion was challenged. so i am not surprised when the president says that four sitting members of congress should, quote, go back to their own
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country, when he has authorized raids without warrants on thousands of families across this country. i am not surprised that he used -- uses the rhetoric that he does, but he violates international human rights and takes thousands of children away from their families. i am not surprised that he has turned our public education system, under the leadership of betsy devos, into a cash cow to enrich himself and his friends. i am not surprised when he corrupts via the secretary of transportation. i am not surprised at what he's doing. but i also know that we're focused on making it better because we don't leave the things that we love and when we love this country, what that means is we propose the solutions to fix it. we love all people in this country, and that's why we believe health care is a human right. we love all children in this
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country, and because we do, that's why we fight for education for all children through college. and so we'll stay focused on our agenda, and we won't get caught slipping because all of this is a distraction. it's a distraction from what's most important and our core values as american citizens. with that i'll hand it over to rashida tlaib. rep. tlaib: thank you to my sisters in service. thank you for being here. as we know the recent tweets and words from the president are simply a continuation of his racist, xenophobic playbook. we cannot allow these hateful actions by the president to distract us from the critical work to hold this administration accountable to the inhumane conditions at the border that is separating children from their loved ones, caging them up in illegal, horrific conditions. i represent the third poorest congressional district in this country. one that is made of working people who have been targeted by
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this administration and their actions and words are hurting them today. i was elected to fight for them, fight for the 13th congressional district. they sent me here to congress to fight back against the corporate assault and corruption in our country. this means supporting an impeachment inquiry of this president and his actions by the administration and his appointees. sadly, this is not the first, nor will it be the last time we hear disgusting bigoted language from the president. we know this is who he is, and we know that he and his administration are constantly engaged in actions that harm residents and american people in our country. many members of congress have called for his impeachment because of his utter disregard and disrespect of the united states constitution and despite this and other many attempts to distract us, i remain focused, we remain focused on holding him accountable to the laws of this land and accountable to the american people.
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i urge house leadership, many of my colleagues to take action to impeach this lawless president today. and now we'll take two or three questions. mary. reporter: thank you very much. the president said today many people agree with him and support these comments. i'm wondering if you can speak directly to those supporters of the president and explain why these comments are so harmful and hurtful. and on a personal note, have you -- can you discuss the impact of these comments. have you had to up your security? are you feeling increased threats? rep. pressley: i would just the -- say that the experience that he offered is in contradiction to the experience that i every day, including in the airport. there were many who approached me and said, i disagree with some of your policies. i am an independent. i am a republican. i think what he did was wrong.
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and he won't apologize. but i am going to apologize. so i have experienced nothing in the wake of those comments. again, but words denouncing these xenophobic, bigoted words, but, again, this is a distraction and we should not take the bait. we can sit here and continue to recycle his hateful rhetoric of which i cannot say i am or inflatedprise outrage because he is, if nothing else, predictable. what we are focused on are the hateful policies that are draconian and oppressive and life-threatening and family separating that is being rolled out by this administration every day. reporter: can you respond to some of the president upon
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specific claims most notably, , that you are a communist and you are pro-al qaeda? rep. omar: you might have noticed when he said, go back to where you came from, there was an uproar through all of our communities because every single person who's brown and black at some point in their life in this country heard that. now, when he made the comment, i know that every single muslim who has lived in this country and across the world has heard that comment. and so i will not dignify it with an answer because i know that every single islamophobe, every single person who is hateful, who is driven by an ideology of othering, as this
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president is, rejoices in us responding to that and us defending ourselves. i do not expect every time there is a white supremist who attacks or there is a white man who kills in a school or in a movie theater or in a mosque or in a synagogue, i don't expect my white community members to respond on whether they love that person or not. and so i think it is beyond time, it's beyond time to ask muslims to condemn terrorists. we are no longer going to allow the dignification of such ridiculous, ridiculous statements. reporter: congresswoman ocasio-cortez --
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reporter: some of you made comments that were controversial. do you think some of those comments made, if they were inflammatory or controversial, if this situation would be different, if he specifically directed some of the same comments -- >> can you repeat that? reporter: the president took issue with some of the comments some of you made on a host of issues and turned them back around. had those comments not been made, whether controversial or not, do you think that would make the situation different, he would have the firepower to turn it back around? omar: i will take this and i think alex has a great answer so i will let her finish it. every single statement that we make is from a place of extreme love for every single person in this country. it is part of the mandate of why we ran for office and why we got elected. every single person wants to make sure they have people in the halls of congress that is
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fighting to make sure they have health care, that they have an education, that is suitable in the united states, that they have access to proper roads and bridges, that they have access to clean water and clean air. every single person here in the united states knows that we are fighting every single day to create a more perfect union and to fight on their behalf. now, when people say, if you say a negative thing about the policies in this country, you hate this country, to me it sort of speaks to the hypocrisy and alex and i were talking about this. when this president and until today he talked about everything that was wrong in this country and how he was going to make it great. and so for him to condemn us and to say we are un-american for wanting to work hard, to make this country be the country we all deserve to live in, complete
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hypocrisy. rep. ocasio-cortez: i don't think it would have changed anything because first of all, he made statements that were blatantly untrue. so whether he was citing comments or not citing comments, if he didn't have what he wanted to say he would make it up. this president operates in complete bad faith. he does not operate in good faith. so that's one thing. but second to the previous question as well, weak minds and leaders challenge loyalty to our country in order to avoid challenging and debating the policy. this president does not know how to make the argument that americans do not deserve health care. he does not know how to defend his policies. so what he does is attack us personally.
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and that is what this is all about. he can't look a child in the face and he can't look all americans in the face and justify why this country is throwing them in cages. so instead, he tells us that i should go back to the great borough of the bronx and make it better. and that's what i'm here to do. >> thank you so much for being here. we appreciate it. thank you very much. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2015] >> here is a look at our live coverage tuesday.
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on c-span, the house returns at 10:00 a.m. eastern for general speeches with legislative business at noon. members will consider a resolution condemning president trump for recent tweets and comments he made about four freshman members of congress. on c-span2, the senate is back to vote on the judicial new phnom -- nomination for the third circuit court of appeals and begin consideration for a series of tax treaties would amend agreements with spain, switzerland, japan and luxembourg. on c-span3 at 9:30 a.m., defense secretary nominee mark esper has his confirmation hearing before the senate armed services in theee followed later day by a senate homeland security and governmental affairs >> coming up this morning

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