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tv   [untitled]    February 14, 2012 9:30pm-10:00pm EST

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now, developing the habits of cooperation is not easy. we have a lot of work to do. we are both committed to building a lasting framework of trust that will support a cooperative partnership for the next 40 years and beyond. [ speaking foreign language ] >> when the vice president first came to the united states on an
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exchange program over 25 years ago to iowa. he will travel there tomorrow to see some old friends. that visit illustrates how important the bonds between our people are. that's why we support programs like 100,000 strong to send more american students to study in china. many more people-to-people exchanges. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> it is a great pleasure to welcome the vice president and to celebrate the bonds of friendship between our governments and peoples. it is my great honor to introduce vice president biden. >> the comments and applause of secretary of state hillary clinton. we'll hear from vice president biden and his counterpart, the vice president of china. we went to china daily, which is the english version of the chinese newspaper carrying this headline the u.s. is getting a
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chance to meet the chinese vp. he's 58 years old and arrived at andrews air force base yesterday and he'll be traveling to iowa this week. in 1985 he spent some time in iowa studying the agriculture and pork industry in that state. so he's heading back to where he lived and with a family that he lived with to get a perspective of how things have changed since the mid '80s. this is "washington today" on c-span radio. some other news today. on wall street the dow was up four closing at 12,878. nasdaq up a fraction and s&p lost one. it speeds up the nation's switch from radar to an air traffic control system based on gps technology. the law also opens up the skies to military commercial and privately owned unmanned drones. the legislation faced opposition
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for labor unions because it set new rules governing union organizing elections at airlines and railroads. the law authorizes 63 approximately $5 billion for the faa over four years, including 11 billion towards the air traffic system and its modernization. ten of the 15 richest counties in the nation are in the washington, d.c. suburbs, with loudon and fairfax counties in northern virginia in number one and number two according to the website mainstreet, which created the list from data from the census in 2010. the median income in loudon county, northern virginia, $119,500. in fairfax $103,000. number three on this list, howard county, maryland. number four is huntington county, new jersey, and number five back to northern virginia with arlington county, maryland. the american league of lobbyists today backing a lawsuit that seeks to overturn president obama's prohibition on lobbyists, the league said the policy is an arbitrary act of administration and a restriction free speech, both of which are unconstitutional. the american league of lobbyists
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support this legal action according to the president of the group. the lawsuit was filed in the fall through members of an industry trade advisory committee or seeking to serve on one. today is valentine's day. the republican national committee has distributed 18 fake cards jabbing democratic politicians in a light-hearted way. one of the cards mocking congressman dennis kucinich from ohio says, i have a short list of valentine's this year. it has the bottom portion of his face cut off, with a knock at the fact he's short. another one bearing the image of debbie wasserman schultz says happy tuesday. that's as sweet as i get. some other democrats on these cards, attorney ar eric holder, and former new jersey governor jon corzine. president obama talked about valentine's day today. he talked about the payroll tax cut, but he started off with just a note about today. >> good morning, and let me start with a quick public
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service announcement for all the gentlemen out there. today is valentine's day. do not forget. i speak from experience here. it is important that you remember this, and go big. that's my advice. >> president obama today at an event dealing with the payroll tax cut. he later tweeted happy valentine's day to wife michelle. no word on how big he went. back with more on "washington today." audio stream of c-span radio, along with the live call-in in the morning, book tv
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and supreme court oral arguments plus podcasts all free with the c-span radio apps. welcome back to washington today on c-span radio. it is budget day on capitol hill. defense secretary panetta and the leadership the defense department both military and civilian saying they remained unified behind a revised strategy that would shift the focus from the long wars to future challenges in asia, the middle east, cyberspace and the proposed budget for the fiscal year na begins october 1st. we'll have more on the budget later on in the program. tim geithner is telling skeptical republican senators
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that it's not possible to correct the problems without raising taxes. the debate we had last year is ensuing again this year. the treasury secretary depending the 2013 budget proposal before the senate finance committee and saying the plan is the only option he sees for helping the economy as well as addressing the deficit without hurting the middle class. peter is writing about this from the hill newspaper. we'll have more with him after a few minutes. here's senator jon kyl questioning secretary geithner. >> let me ask you a couple other questions to get to the question of how to do tax reform. you talked about lowering rates and broadening the base and so on. the president had a good statement in the state of the union. everybody does their fair share and plays by the same set of rules. that's the basic premise here. how does the proposal in the budget meet this test when it eliminates the manufacturing deduction for certain taxpayers but then doubles it for certain other taxpayers but not for other manufacturing? >> good question. not everybody playing by the
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same set of rules. >> good question. >> while we serving a very limited number -- >> stop there. we're talking about picking winners and losers. you would increase or create tax incentives for building advanced technology vehicles at the expense of -- not for other kind of vehicles, correct? >> you're putting me in a slight difficult position because i said in the next two weeks we'll late out a more comprehensive set of proposals here.
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you're right to say we are proposing to preserve a very limited number of core investments for the united states. we're doing that because we think there's a compelling economic case for doing that and we're going to eliminate dozens and dozens -- >> excuse me, i just got five seconds left. treasury department is where i get the statistic or the citation for the proposition that the people that would be hit by the so-called millionaire sur tax according to your definition, 80% of whom or business owners. is that a correct statement? >> i'll have to go back and look. it is roughly 2% of tax paying individuals and slightly higher -- only slightly higher portion of tax paying small businesses. now, again, if we don't do that, though, who are you going to ask to carry the burden? >> all right. are these job creators or not?
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are these the people who hire people? >> another way to think about this is -- >> yes or no? >> yes, they will apply to -- a small fraction. >> is it true that the majority of businesses especially coming out of a recession are created by -- majority of jobs are created by small businesses? >> you are right that small businesses create a substantial fraction of jobs. again, we proposing chang that affect a tiny fraction of small businesses and look at the record of job creation by small businesses -- we have a recent experience of this, which is the period of the second half of the 90s when they face similar -- the record of job creation was very, very good. >> just some the exchanges earlier in the day with senator john kyl and tim geithner on capitol hill.
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let's drill down some of the numbers. the president's budget proposals includes a number of tax increases that targets the wealthy. part of the debate that the white house has been ensuing over the last couple of years, including higher taxes on investment dividends and capital gains. the so-called buffett rule would ensure millionaires pay their taxes although it was not included in the budget proposal. peter schroeder is joining us live on capitol hill from the hill newspaper. thanks for being with us. >> my pleasure. >> first of all, what kind of reaction did the president's budget get from people like senator kyl and the testimony today from the treasury secretary? >> the reaction immediately from republicans up here on capitol hill was not one of pleasure. they were eager to criticize the proposal saying it piles on debt doesn't do enough and increases taxes some people say are essential to get the economy running giving their running small businesses and trying to create jobs. meanwhile your treasury secretary geithner among a
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number of other administration officials trying to defend this proposal saying it's the right thing for the economic right now and includes some targeted stimulus but also down the line includes provisions it they say will address the deficit and help get the nation's fiscal footing right back on the right track. >> you have two sides of this argument, the democratic whip and the house of representatives steny hoyer saying that the president's plan does in his words create a path to stabilizing the country's debt and stirring job creation. you heard from paul ryan calling the budget irresponsible, and it seems to be part of debate is how do you create a path towards economic stability while also reducing a $16 trillion debt that will grow over the next 5 to 8 years? >> that's exactly right. that's the fundamental if you were seeing here which is the issue of taxes versus spend sg one you hear about a lot on capitol hill. the president is trying to make the case for targeted increases for especially wealthier
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individuals in the country to rein in the deficit. secretary geithner said on the hill he doesn't see a way to handle this without including some measure of tax increases, but at the same time republicans are saying tax increases are exactly the wrong way to go about this. instead we need to focus more on making changes to entitlement programs and looking for places to cut spending to be serious about getting control over the deficit, which they maintain is the biggest problem facing the economy right now, which they use to counteract it right now to keep the economy going. >> the other part of the debate is overhauling the u.s. tax code. the secretary said there's no plan and really no likelihood in this election year that the white house and republicans will come to an agreement on this. what does that tell you about the state of washington? >> that's exactly right. the treasury secretary says the white house plans to produce a broad framework for recommending changes to the corporate tax code that basically said don't expect anything major in terms
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of reforms of the individual tax code. when asked why the white house isn't pushing hard for tax reform this year, he cited the summer talks that the president had with house speaker john boehner to strike a big, comprehensive deal. ultimately it went nowhere, and geithner said we didn't get anywhere in the summer talks, so we don't have a real reason to expect trying to do it again right now in a campaign year is more fruitful. >> give our audience a sense of what's in the budget. we heard from senator sessions who said this is increased spending and taxing wealthier americans but no glide path towards it. what are the highlights? >> it comes in at $3.8 trillion. the areas that you're going to hear a lot about are some things you touched on earlier. there's a few targeted increases
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in taxes on the nation's wealthiest earners. it allows the burk tax cuts to expire at the end of the year but at the same time the budget also does include a pared down version of the jobs proposal that the president rolled out a few months back and includes some target investment for education and infrastructure and technology that the white house wants to drive more dollars into. at the same time the white house is maintaining that the budget as is in the out years a few years down the road will start to turn the tide of the deficit. obviously reps around convinced of that, but the white house nonetheless maintains after a few more years when the economy is back on more solid footing, the budget is set up to tackle the deficit as well. >> one final question is and you bring it up in the piece and we talked with peter schroeder with the hill newspaper. we've seen the demonstrations in athens in greece. it seems there's a solution to the debt crisis over there and now it's a social issue.
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is it fair to compare what greece is going through, or is that political rhetoric? >> it's rhetoric you hear a lot on capitol hill. there's a handful of republicans that were repeatedly citing greece whether talking about the president's budget saying this is a road map to that sort of situation. right now it doesn't look like we're in the same sort of situation. i don't think you'll find anybody in washington in either party who will say the nation's fiscal trajectory is perfectly fine and sustainable. even geithner was agreeing with reps with the fiscal situation. that's about whether it comes down from via increase taxes or down by cutting more spending. >> peter schroeder is live on capitol hill tonight and writes for "the hill" newspaper. appreciate your time tonight. >> anytime. >> we'll continue our discussion on the budget, the debt and deficit and one area where there are spending cuts but also sparking debate on capitol hill. the defense budget. secretary leon panetta and army general martin dempsey testifying on capitol hill before the senate armed services
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committee and essentially defending the blueprint to slash the size of the army and marine corps and cut back on ship building and fighter jets as well as weapon systems. it would add up to $125 billion in spending for military operations and pentagon. another $88.5 billion for the wars in iraq and afghanistan. some more numbers for you. the total is $32 billion less than this year's budget, which is a reflection of the drawdown in the two conflicts as well as what we've seen in september 11th with the terrorism attacks and the clamor to reduce the deficit to the associated press. general dempsey acknowledging
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the inherent risks of a smaller budget and the impact on national security, which is one of the questions joe lieberman brought up. he's an independent from connecticut. >> there is risks here, and i appreciate general dempsey in response to senator mccain's question, you would make a risk assessment first. the guidance that the department did, issued in january is really the equivalent of a follow-on to a defense review in the quadrennial review we require a defense risk assessment. i hope we don't act on this request and that the appropriations committees don't act on a budget request for the department of defense before we get your risk assessment because i think it's that important. but for now since, secretary, you said quite directly with kind of a directness we've come to expect of you that there is risk here. you can't cut this much money out of the defense budget without risk. so i wanted to ask you and general dempsey in advance of the formal report, what are the two or three top risks that you
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are concerned about that this budget places on our military and on our national security? >> senator, first of all, i'm abiding by the law. the law that was passed by congress that required the reductions that we've proposed. and i think, you know, just to your comment, we have tried to step up to the plate and do our duty here. i think in weighing how you address this issue, you've also got to take into consideration the national security threat that comes from the huge deficits and the huge debt that we're running. we're running a debt now that's comparable to our gdp. at some point the congress and the president have to address that larger issue. what i'm doing here is basically
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doing my part as dictated by the congress. with regards to the threats, as i said, you can't take a half trillion dollars out of the defense budget and not incur some risks. the main concerns that i see are that we are going to have a smaller force. and when you have a smaller force, the ability to move that force where you have to is not going to be as easy as it would be with a larger force. the ability to move quickly, to be agile, to be able to deploy them, i think we can do it under the plan we've presented, but it clearly is an additional risk. the risk on mobilizing. if we face a serious crisis and we have the need to mobilize, our ability to mobilize quickly to pull the force together, as we had to do, frankly, after 9/11. our ability to be able to do that and respond quickly and be
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able to deploy that force involves some risks. i think we've designed a way to do that by keeping a strong guard and a strong reserve, but nevertheless that's an additional risk. the risk of -- i mean, we depend an awful lot on technology here. i think technology is very important. but our ability to develop that technology, to make sure that it works, to make sure that we have that leap ahead capability is something that involves some risk. and lastly, as i said, when you shave the budget by a half a trillion dollars, it leaves very little margin of error. >> right. >> and that, i think, is probably the biggest risk of all. >> if i have time, senator, i'd like to respond because i will preview my risk assessment for you. and i did not assess unacceptable risk in my assessment, and i don't believe this budget incurs unacceptable risk. i will tell you that i am prepared to say that sequestration would pose unacceptable risk. and here's why.
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it's important to note. it's pretty clear -- there's physics involved. in this budget, we have decided to offramp a certain number of service men and women. and we've about maxed out our an ability to do that with the proper dignity and respect to the force. so 15,00,000, 15,000 a year is enough to ask to leave and still have influence. that's kind of maxed out right now. it's pretty clear to me that we're going to have challenges with infrastructure and changes to it, whether this committee and others agree with our recommendation for brack. so if we fix those two variables in sequestration, i can't get rid -- not get rid of, but i can't ask soldiers, sailors to leave quicker than they're going to leave. and i can't touch infrastructure. sequestration leaves me three places to go to find the additional money, operations, maintenance and training. that's the definition of a hollow force.
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>> well, i thank you both for your answers. they're helpful to me. with all respect, i consider this budget to represent unacceptable risk to our national security, and i hope members of this committee across party lines will work together to reduce that risk in a fiscally responsible way. thanks, mr. chairman. >> the comments and questions from senator joe lieberman, a member of the senate armed services committee, leon panetta, defense secretary, and general martin dempsey testifying on capitol hill in the first of three days of congressional hearings for pentagon leaders, discussing the pentagon budget. leon panetta saying both military and civilian leaders within the pentagon remain unified behind a revised strategy that essentially shifts the focus from the long wars to future challenges in asia, the mideast, also concerns about cyberspace. the budget for the fiscal year, by the way, begins on october the 1st. news from capitol hill about rand paul, republican from kentucky, is delaying a senate
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debate over a two-year transportation bill to make a statement on egypt. after unsuccessfully trying to block a judicial nominee, paul refused to offer consent to quickly move ahead on the senate's $109 billion transportation bill which the president offered his support for last week. the move expected to delay consideration on the plan until later this week according to politico, the reason, senator paul wants to offer an amendment to the senate transportation bill that would cut off aid to egypt if non-government employees working with the u.s. government are detained or held in the country. as we're seeing right now with the transportation secretary's son, ray lahood, his son remains in egypt. and unless the senator decides to consent to move forward for the transportation bill, the senate would be stuck in a 30-hour holding pattern. so just part of the parliamentary procedures taking place on capitol hill as senator paul trying to make a point about egypt. here's more from his comments on the floor earlier today. >> mr. president, many senators are concerned that i may be
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delaying a vote in the senate. this is not true. i offered yesterday to vote on my amendment with ten minutes of discussion. i've offered to vote immediately at any point in time, but i do think it's worth ten minutes of our time and ten minutes of americans' time to discuss the plight of u.s. citizens in egypt. i do not think that ten minutes is too much to ask that we discuss, debate and vote on whether or not egypt should continue to get aid from us while detaining our citizens. egypt is unlawfully preventing u.s. citizens from leaving their country. i do not think that ten minutes is too much to ask. we've sent over $60 billion in aid to egypt over the years. and they now hold 19 u.s. citizens virtually hostage. will we ever learn? will we ever learn that you can't buy friendship? 19 u.s. citizens who traveled to
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egypt to help egypt, to help egypt em bris democracy, to help egypt have an elected government and enjoy the freedoms that we enjoy here and the success that we have enjoyed here, having a democratic government. they are now being prevented from leaving egypt. some of these pro-democracy workers, in fact, are now seeking refuge in the u.s. embassy. this is a tragedy. this is something that we should make a clear and unequivocal statement about. does egypt wish to be part of the civilized world? or do they wish to descend into the lawlessness of the third world? now, some have argued that we don't need these provisions, that there are already provisions in place to keep egypt from getting aid. well, apparently the egyptians around listening, and they need to listen very clearly. the amendment that i have proposed will end all aid to
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egy egypt. economic aid and military aid. we give over $1.5 billion to egypt every year, and we cannot continue to give aid to a country that is detaining illegally our u.s. citizens. now, some have said the provisions that we already have take care of this. there's a couple of problems. the egyptians aren't hearing that message, so the message needs to be louder and more firm. we will not tolerate any country holding u.s. citizens as hostage or lawlessly. i think egypt needs to know that america means business. and that's what this debate is all about. and so i don't think it's too much to ask the senate to consider this proposal on egypt, spend ten minutes, and let's have a vote to send a message to egypt. >> the comments of senator rand paul, republican of kentucky, his legislation would block financial aid to egypt until the
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white house certifies the egyptian government is not holding, detaining, prosecuting, harassing or preventing the exit from egypt of american workers. and again, as you're hearing from senator ball, because he was unable to get a quick vote, he is now essentially holding up legislative business in the u.s. senate until this issue is resolved. so it's certainly something we'll continue to follow in the next day or two. this is "washington today" on c-span radio. u.s. officials and defense analysts are concerned that a covert war of assassinations between israel and iran could escalate out of control. the israeli prime minister blaming iran yesterday for car bombings of israeli diplomatic vehicles in new delhi and in the georgia capital. the attacks coming following the deaths of several iranian nuclear scientists, the most recent on january 11th in a car bomb that took place in tehran that iran said israel in orchestrated. and so this back-and-forth raising a lot of questions in a number of capitals around the world including here in washington. it came up at today's daily

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