Transcript of Transcript: Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer Hold News Conference on Trump’s Budget Proposal

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76 views 26 Feb 2020

00:00:06

OK. Good afternoon. I'm proud to be joined by my dear friend and great colleague, these wonderful, excellent and superb Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi. And thank you all for coming. Now, if President Trump's State of the Union was a manifesto of mistruths, as Speaker Pelosi so aptly put it, President Trump's latest budget proposal is a blueprint for destroying America. One word 9 letters sums up the president's budget. H y p o C.R. i s y hypocrisy.

00:00:50

In his State of the Union address, President Trump talked at length about health care, claiming amazingly at one point he will fight to protect patients with pre-existing conditions. We know the president just lies, lies about protecting health care and his budget is proof in the State of the Union. If the State of the Union is what he says, the budget is what he does and the two are from different planets. I like to say the budget is the truth serum.

00:01:25

And now the American people can clearly see that he is a fraud who is not fighting for them under Donald Trump? The average American is struggling to keep up and his budget would make life harder for them. President Trump likes to talk about the forgotten man and woman. Well, in this budget, he's forgotten about the very people he promised to help in his State of the Union last week. So let me go over a few of the areas on health care.

00:01:58

The president said he'd never cut Medicare and Medicaid. He slashes both 1 trillion in cuts to Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act, hundreds of billions of cuts in Medicare. And the president even proposes a 35 million dollar cut to see d.c's Infectious Disease Rapid Response Reserve Fund. This is the fund currently currently being used to respond to the Corona virus outbreak on education.

00:02:27

The president's budget would devastate our nation's students, both K through 12 and college.

00:02:32

His budget cuts. This cuts the Strengthening Institutions program that assists historically black colleges and universities and other minority serving institutions. Typical hypocrisy at the State of the Union, he was bragging how he helps HBCU use his budget cuts. Some cuts them. It cuts after school and summer learning programs for two million young people. Rural education grants will hurt 18000 school districts across the country. If the president in the president's budget, hundreds of billions of dollars would be slashed from student loan forgiveness, he actually makes it harder for kids to pay back their debt.

00:03:15

Instead of a limit of 10 percent of income per year, it goes up to twelve and a half. Under his budget, that's how he cares about students and the overwhelming burden of debt they have. He slashes federal housing assistance. He slashes federal disability insurance. So if you're an American struggling with student loan debt or health problems or housing costs or hunger. The president's budget says you're at a loss. Meanwhile, if you're a millionaire, billionaire, a corporation, a big oil wildcatter, the president's budget says you're in luck, you're in clover.

00:03:52

And lastly, the president's budget doesn't make it harder to fight climate change alone.

00:03:59

It would exacerbate, make worse the prime climate crisis, not just not fight it, but make it worse. He cuts EPA funding by more than 25 percent.

00:04:08

He cuts renewable energy funding, clean energy like wind and solar, 75 percent, and cuts funding for climate research, gas and screen monitoring and emissions reduction activities. In this anti-science administration that he leads president's budget. President Trump's budget even cuts disaster relief for FEMA by twelve point two billion dollars. And so much of the disaster is caused by climate. The earth is on fire. Antarctica. Had a 64 degree record temperature this week, and what is the president's response?

00:04:48

He douses the fire with lighter fluid of weakened pollution regulations and then proposes cutting the fire department. We know how much he cares about the oil companies, but his budget makes clear he doesn't give a hoot about the future of this globe and is fine, leaving to our children and grandchildren a globe in much worse shape even than it is today. Speaker Pelosi. Thank you very much, Leader Shioma, for your leadership in fighting this budget. The budget, our federal budget should be a statement of our national values.

00:05:25

What is important to us as a nation should be reflected in how we allocate our resources. The budget in terms of our legislative work is the heart of the matter. Where it all begins and this is a heartless budget. It's a heartless budget. And some of the ways that the distinguished leader spelled out and I think it does bear repetition to say what he is doing, slashing a half trillion dollars for Medicare. Every city from the houses that I'm protecting, Medicare does through a half a trillion dollars out of Medicare and from Medicaid.

00:06:02

Nine hundred billion dollars. So if you're sitting at home at your kitchen table and you're a senior or use those as being you're in your family on Medicare, you're getting cut. And if there is long term care and thought in your family's budget, you are getting cut. Two thirds of long term care. Two thirds of long term care is paid for by Medicaid. This is a middle class benefit. Those cuts endanger the health of seniors and Long-Term Care need for them and their families.

00:06:35

And these Medicaid cuts also hurt rural hospitals. People seeking opioid addiction treatment, veterans and their families. More than a million veterans are on Medicaid. Nine hundred billion dollars cut from Medicaid. At the same time, the president is, of course, fighting to overturn the Affordable Care Act, which has meant the preexisting condition benefit so important to all of those families. But in this budget, what could possibly be his motivation to cut all that money from the TVC that you mentioned at the time of the Corona virus and the threat that that is cutting members money from c.D.

00:07:16

The Center for Disease Control using the full title, the prevention element of the Good Health of the American People. What could pop? What could he be thinking? Maybe I'm using that term loosely. The president said he would fight for farmers. We all want to fight performance. But at a time when farmers are declaring bankruptcy at record rate, the president in this budget wants to slash the safety net by nearly 60 billion dollars and ransack the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

00:07:51

His budget also takes food off the table of hungry families of both rural and urban communities by cutting more than one hundred and eighty billion dollars from the SNAP program SNAP program. Some farmers can argue that farmers in the Midwest will say we are farmers and we are on food stamps at such a sad thing. Their economies depend. That's one Senator Dole and Senator McGovern leaving began. All of this was to help people make their heppell security, but offered to help farmers have their economic security as well.

00:08:25

Countless groups representing seniors and working families and more have denounced the budget from the L Alliance for Retired Americans to the Young Invincibles young young Synvisc with a young lobbyist. You've probably seen them. We've had 10000 events to fight the repeal, the Affordable Care Act, which the young they weren't at all of them, but they were significant at those meetings. The young little lobbyist, some of them born with a pre-existing condition, many of them on Medicaid. They write, We are disappointed, though sadly not surprised that the president has once again broken his campaign promise.

00:09:03

We absolutely reject this vision for our country and we call upon our legislators to reject this budget and the dangerous values, its values, our children's lives depend on it. And the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare Rights. This budget will leave seniors and other vulnerable senior citizens hungrier, sicker and poor. Reveals the president's cruel priorities heading into the 2020 election. Chairman mentioned earlier that there are benefits to the high end in our economic life in our country.

00:09:41

The president in his what he has been doing, what he talked about in his State of the Union and what this budget is about increases the national debt, passes that expense on to our children so that he can give tax cuts to the top 1 percent in our country. It's absolutely shameful. Again, this budget supposed to be a statement of our values. Once again, this president is demonstrating how little he values the good health, financial security and well-being of hardworking American families.

00:10:18

This budget is an insult. The hopes and dreams and aspirations of America's working families. It increases the national debt. It must be rejected. And by the way, it isn't a complete abandonment of a budget agreement that we had with the domestic and defense priorities. Clearly, this administration cannot be trusted. I love that. We're ready for your questions on this subject. First. Yes. What did you make of the president's request for two billion dollars of wall construction funding?

00:10:57

Well, look, we have fought him on the war successfully in the budget. Then he tries to go around and declare an emergency. Everyone knows that that is not what the emergency legislation was called for. We're going to fight every penny, the war construction. We don't want to take it away from military families. What's interesting in this budget, all the military families and all the military support that they took out last year, they didn't try to backfill this year.

00:11:26

We didn't let them in last year's budget. So who is this going to hurt? Our nation's military, our nation's military families for a war that is a vanity project that he said Mexico would pay for. Yes. And just a credit to that point, the distinguished leader has been very clear. But this is about child care centers at military bases, facilities for the quality of life for the families and for the security of our country. As he said, Mexico is going to pay for it now.

00:12:00

But in addition to the harm that he's doing to military families, just getting back to Medicaid, almost a trillion dollars in cuts in Medicaid, that's over a million veterans are on Medicaid. Hundreds of millions of veterans are on food stamps. So this really is shows just a cavalier attitude to the needs of America's servicemen and women and their families when they're in the military. And when they retire on the issue of Medicare. Both of you have been around a long time and you voted for cuts to Medicare in the past.

00:12:38

You know, we opposed whatever your gang of six, your use of Medicare for a civil war. Let me correct you right there, because you should not go any further down that path in friendship. The fact is, in the Affordable Care Act, we got rid of some waste and abuse in Medicare and use that money to prolong the life of Medicare. Medicare was not how we funded the Affordable Care Act. Medicare was happy. Wherever Care Act is how we strengthened Medicare.

00:13:11

So don't buy into that false premise assumption. And Medicare is that we increased the longevity of it. And that has been one of the things they say all used Medicare that we did not we did not drug was making the same arguments about this approach.

00:13:28

He goes, he didn't know what.

00:13:31

Wait, wait, wait. Oh, he didn't put a nickel of that back into health care. Not a nickel. That's the difference in Medicare. So he's not you. He may use that argument, but he will use it forcefully. This is very important that we have clarity on this subject because we're talking about America's working families. We're talking about Medicare, which is essential to the not only the health, but the financial security. We're also talking about Medicaid, which is a middle income benefit, although people think of it being for poor people.

00:14:03

For children. Yes. But as I mentioned over, it's about two thirds of it being of long term care being covered by Medicaid, which is now being cut by almost a trillion nine point nine hundred billion dollars. But also to put this in a perspective about what that means to America's working families. Why are they doing this? They're doing this so that they can give advantages to the high end. We want to see balance in all of this.

00:14:32

We want to see where we can find savings. Let's object to everything we spend to harsh scrutiny so that the results for the American people are the best that they can be. But don't get in front of an audience and say, I'm here to protect Medicare, Social Security and people. And we say Medicaid, too, and then put a budget like this forward and then try to say we did something on the health care bill, which we did not into this subject.

00:15:01

So I'm promises doesn't to your budget. You're in on that third line.

00:15:12

I don't blame them. What do you want that regulatory exposure? That's what I thought we'd see both sides of the room. So obviously not discussing this one. Well, come on.

00:15:30

Speaker Pelosi says it well. You want to know the values of a president. Don't listen in with this president in particular to the State of the Union address. Look at his budget. And it shows his values are so off base. Left to his own devices, he would do this. We stop. We fight him. But make no mistake about it, this is just what he wants to do. And the American people should know about it loud and clear.

00:15:56

And we have a saying in the house. Show me your budget. Show me your values. That's where it is. And this is really a statement. So at undermining of the values of America is as a community what we are about respecting what the needs are of America's working families. This is really important because it is also part of the anti-government attitude of the Republicans. See if they can diminish Medicaid, diminish Social Security, take away the disability benefits, reduce the disability benefits and Social Security.

00:16:35

What's that? What is the advantage of that? And I might add, because our distinguished leader talked about education, there is nothing that brings more money to the Treasury than investment in education, early childhood, K-through-12, higher education, health, postgrad and lifetime learning for a worker. So when they say they're making a cut in education, they're making they're increasing the national debt and undermining the aspirations of the American people and the competitiveness of our country. This subject you are you are you to this subject?

00:17:12

No. I know you have to go on. You said that one levels for the defense and non-defense side framework agreement. The non-defense side and not the defense says, how would you address this? Well, we're going to write our bills according to the agreements that we have with the administration. And as we did this year, we were able to avoid a shutdown, even though the president was threatening one because we honored the budget agreement in a bipartisan way.

00:17:50

House and Senate, and that's what we will do. Again, one more on this subject and demonstrated it. Yes. Are you actually saying that Medicare benefits are cut because the president says these are cost control items? Are you really? Are you really arguing that Medicare will get you the details? There are cuts in programs that benefit Medicare that go to Medicare. Absolutely. Yes. Thank you to both of you. Said it is a priority of yours.

00:18:16

What do you make of the fact that Michael Bloomberg is spending a billion dollars or more and the Democratic primary is good? Okay.

00:18:26

Look, both of us stand strongly in our whole caucuses due from one end to the other that we want to do everything we can to get rid of Citizens United, that we want to go back to the days of real campaign finance reform. And we stand for that. Plain and simple. And we will if we get the majority, if, God willing, the speaker keeps the majority. I think both have a good chance of happening. That's going to be a top priority.

00:18:53

Top priority for us.

00:18:54

Now, we passed H.R. 1, an H.R. 1. We did three things when we ran and two thousand eighteen for the people. We said we were going to lower the cost of health care for America's families by lowering the cost of prescription drugs as we protected the preexisting condition benefits, lower health care, bigger paychecks by building the infrastructure of America in a green way, a resilient way for the future. We thought in those two areas we could find some common ground with the administration because the president said he was going to negotiate like crazy on reducing costs of a prescription drug.

00:19:29

I guess like crazy means not at all. And hopefully we can still find a pass on both of those lower cost of prescription drugs and and building the infrastructure and three cleaner government. I don't know that we have much hope with him in that regard. However, it was about lowering the influence of dark special interest money in elections, as well as giving opportunity for small donors to weigh in. But everybody thought that his or her voice counted as much as anyone else's.

00:20:00

Was John Lewis's provisions in there to end voter suppression and the rest of that?

00:20:05

We had three bills. You had three bills on the floor right now in terms of election security, and that is the SHIELD Act, the Safety Act, elements of H.R. 1. Why are the Republicans so afraid of stopping foreign interference in our elections? Why are the Republicans so afraid of protecting the integrity of our elections and protecting the. We did get money over 400 million dollars in the US. It's not an omnibus mini bus tour that we passed at the end of last year.

00:20:40

Donald Sterling over his objections because he is standing in the way of the election integrity that we need as far as Michael Bloomberg is concerned. I think that his his involvement in this campaign will be a positive one. And by the way, just one other point on that H.R. One, we have asked countless times for McConnell to let us bring it to the floor, to bring it to the floor.

00:21:07

He won't do it. He's against any campaign finance reform. He's for all this dark money flowing in dark.

00:21:13

Yeah, me on that. Oh, please.

00:21:16

We also took out of H.R. 1, one important element, which was the Voting Rights Act. And we've sent it over separately. The Voting Rights Act to correct. To answer what? The challenge that the Supreme Court gave when it undermined seriously in my view that the Voting Rights Act, but said Congress can correct this. And we did. And he won't bring that up to an across the country. Those who are interested in the Voting Rights Act are paying keen attention to the fact that he will not even bring up the Voting Rights Act, which we passed when we passed originally in 0 6 0 7 president.

00:21:54

I mean, it was 0 6, but can't be effective in 0 7. President Bush signed it. It was overwhelming, I think unanimous in the Senate, in the House, 400 votes, something like that. And now we can't even get it brought up on this. Both bills are part of McConnell's legislative graveyard. Last question, Bernie Sanders is on the top of your list. Well, because all of you. The primaries are primaries. And there are always lots of sturm und drang.

00:22:23

You will see in a few months, Democrats will be strongly united together and we will be focused like a laser on beating Donald Trump.

00:22:32

The enthusiasm that you last saw in 2008 to elect Barack Obama, you will see among Democrats this summer and fall to get Donald Trump out of office. And we in the house that we've set a model for how to win elections by winning in the most gerrymandered voter suppressed political arena you could ever put together net gain of 40 seats. So we think we are an engine that can help us win that election, whoever our nominee is. Thank you.