tv Washington Journal CSPAN September 30, 2010 7:00am-10:00am EDT
of a new survey of independent voters. and then look at new rules covering debt settlement companies with a washington post reporter. host: last day of the fiscal year. congress has left town. they passed a continuing resolution to continue funding the government. that is what we will be talking about this first 45 minutes, about the congress, what they have completed. we want you to grade at the congress here on "washington journal."
what has congress accomplished? we want to get your view on that. congress finished up last night passing a continuing resolution, both in the house and senate, which is a spending bill. vicki, tells what happens? she is with the hill newspaper. guest: the senate picked up the bill first last night and moved it really quickly over to the house. what they did was pass a bill to keep the government running until december 3. host: what it passed with republican support on both sides? guest: it was passed with republican support. more republican support on the senate side. it was passed with one house republican voting for it and 22 democrats voting against it on the house side. host: who was that republican? guest: that is a good question. i actually do not know who it
was. host: the government will continue at its current levels through december -- december 3. why? guest: the main idea is they are coming back for a lame duck session so it is something they want to do at that point. i think democrats want to evaluate the post-election season and what is happening. and then they will determine how much longer and they will do another cr for. it could be into the new year. after make the decision at that point. they will be dealing with the bush era tax cuts at the time, so what does compel members to come back to town for the lame duck session. host: the last couple of weeks about congress, it seems the conversation has been so much about voting on tax cuts and whether to have tax cuts and what the middle-class is. can you talk about that a little bit?
guest: there are two bushehr tax cut, from 2001 and 2003 -- two bush era tax cuts. democrats and house would like to extend the middle-class tax cut, for anyone making about $250,000 or less. the administration and some democrats in both chambers have said that they would like to let the upper bracket income tax cut expire at the end of the year and some of the democratic colleagues disagree with that and pretty much all republicans said that they would like to see all the tax cuts extended for at least a year while the economy continues to recover. host: who has had control of the political conversation on this issue? has it been the administration, has been the republicans in congress? guest: i think both sides have . ally been battling for it
it seems like republicans are getting back in from democrats on the whole idea of getting these tax cuts extended at least for a year for everyone, arguing that a lot of small businesses fall into the higher income bracket, it would affect them. i would probably almost give just republicans a couple of extra points just for keeping the dialogue a little bit on their side. and democrats are trying to make sure that they are saying, look, we are going to come back. we are going to make sure we extend the tax cuts. we will do this. but we will have to see what we are going to do about the upper brackets. but a lot of the democrats, especially leaders, say they think it is too expensive to extend the upper bracket tax cuts. host: now the talk about the lame-duck session did you know when that is going to begin? guest: they will come back
november 15. host: how long will last? guest: another good question we will have to see. i assume they will be in until thanksgiving and then will probably come back until december, if they need to. i have a pretty heavy agenda. they did not move very quickly through this tax cut debate in this post summer session. so we will have to see how fast they move. it could be one of those years where everyone is here until christmas. i think there were reporters joking on the hill yesterday that we will be here until mid years. so it is hard to see. but i would assume some time into december. host: i noticed the vote on the continuing resolution was to 10- 29 -- two runs and 10-209. -- 210-209.
i apologize, it was 238-194. it was the motion to adjourn -- why was that one such a low vote counts? guest: there was just a sense that members know that that would last vote of the day pretty much. it would be the last big vote. it seems like a vote was well in hand despite some house republicans disagreeing with the contents of that bill. so, it sounds like members decided they could just leave town before hands. host: when it comes to the lame duck session, what else will be on the agenda? guest: obviously we have the bush tax cuts. we have the cr. we will see if they do appropriations bills. the senate is probably the most backed up.
there is a china currency bill the house passed last night that the senate says they will do. they do have a pretty big agenda. they still want to do food safety, child attrition issues. i think they said -- child nutrition issues preventing this said there were 20 bills on the docket. we will have to see what they get to. it shows there will be a pretty busy lame duck. but i am sure it will be dominated obviously by the bush tax cuts because they do expire at the end of the year so that's absolutely have to be done. it's called thank you for spending a few minutes with us -- host: thank you for spending a few minutes with us. now it is time for you to chime in. allow 30 days between your
clarence in baltimore. caller: good morning. host: clarence, we're listening. caller: i would give congress say d--- congress a d-. they are not finishing. host: what would you like to see them do? caller: i would like them to pass the middle-class tax cut so it can continue. they will probably do it after the election. host: clyde in detroit. independent line. caller: i would give the republicans an f, democrats a d. i am a true independent. hi wish republicans and democrats stop calling in on the . dependent minline congressmen are all
millionaires, they are not for the tax cuts because it affects them and it is a big joke. i am in line with the opinion of the "usa today" editorial. host: peter on the democrats' line. caller: i think they are trying to do the job right but when you have one party saying no to everything they do -- if we do not have that democratic control of the senate, which is 60 votes or better, we won't solve anything in the next election because what is going to happen if the republicans to take charge, you are going to have the democrats doing the same thing, saying no to everything, and we will have a lock up government again. the only chance we've got to save this government is give complete control to the democrats for two more years and did the job is not done, then change everybody. maybe we will have a chance to save this country from deadlock which we are in now and which we will stay and even if the republicans take over. host: karen and tennessee.
you are on the air on the independent line. caller: i think all of congress needs to be fired. they have not done their job. they get up there and they talk about this and that and yet they can get absolutely nothing done. host: would issue would you like to see worked on? caller: i would like to see them work on the settlement for the indian tribes. i would like to see them work on taxes on corporations sending jobs overseas. i would like to see the work on the tax cuts. like theyesn't seem are doing anything to help the average american citizen. host: the bronx, john, democrat. caller: i give the republicans
an f for failure and i give the democrats a b-. the-is because they have not worked strong enough in order to go against the recount -- recalcitrance of the republicans that will have ideas. they are a responsible. they are for tax cuts for the rich and they hide behind small businesses when in fact the small business bill that went through a recently will do much more for small businesses than anything the republicans are talking about. it is just ridiculous, the influence of corporate money in the congress is bad for the nation. and the republicans need to wake up and start trying to govern instead of just being against everything, even if it is bad for the country. they are awful.
democrats, b-, but republicans, i don't see how anyone can vote for them. they are awful. host: louis, memphis, democrat. all right, louis, go ahead. all right, louis, we will put on hold until you can get the volume turned down. birmingham, alabama, kevin, independent line the. caller: thank you for c-span. just a quick comment. here we go again with a lot of people calling in a really don't know the facts. everybody, you know, pick off all of the last caller or catches 20 seconds or something -- everybody's opinion about what obama is doing or the senate. late last night the senate just passed an extension through
third of december. there are still working. everybody tried to keep the country moving forward. people themselves, we have the voices sometimes it is better for us not to say nothing at all because we put our on foot in our mouth a lot of time and we just have to keep our eyes on what is going on, keep in touch with the people in the white house. really, we all have to play our role but we can't jump on first thing in the morning with all the negativity. let congress do what they need to do first and then lets both out who is not doing their job to continue moving forward. that is all we can do. thank you foresees. but host: this tweet -- host: this tweet. from "politico" this morning, baucus urges irs to look at gop-
i am an independent. we are all independents. we should join the conclusion that the democrat and republican party are screwing all of us and we need to the venture the wake up to that fact. host: ohio. lt on the republican line. caller: kudos to the last speaker -- not building on what he said that he is correct. i would give both parties and incomplete. they have not been there enough. they have had a lot of absentee's and they just pulled another one. they are going on a field trip for a month when they should be taking care of the business. none of them have applied themselves properly. they have wasted the taxpayers' time and a lot of time we needed for the economy on things that don't help but actually harm. if i had to act to give them a great, neither one would complete the year.
the problem is the oligarchy of the past puts bubble world on a track against god. chicago board of trade, that is what they do. interest. when it comes to israel, if you support israel and give them the weapons and the money and egypt, too, and you don't take care of new orleans -- the democrats have been bought out, too. not all of them. but this system just ain't going to work. nothing wrong with islam. when christianity went astray god created islam. flu was in memphis. -- a host: that was laws in memphis. caller: i like to hear democrats like to themselves like obama does every day.
democrats get an f because they are failures, failures at everything. the reason they are failures is because they are cowards. they have always been. republicans get n a because of a stopped this, and is not say from taking over america and destroying at -- stopped this communist nazi. host: the front page of "usa today," speaker boehner. it is in the lead story this morning and "usa today." kim and columbus, ohio.
the democrats. caller: that is one reason why we have some times with the republicans, you can't deal with them because a lot of them work on just what that man was saying, they are so far out there we do not know how to get by with these people. what i want to say about congress. i would give b-plus to the democrats. it can see the republicans fighting on all of this -- a shutdown of congress. if you don't hear that right now, if you let these people did in and they do it. " we've got some sinister republicans coming in through the tea party and if you don't get that now -- i hear what you all are saying about barack obama and the democrats. but you can clearly say that the republicans are trying to stop everything.
it hurts my heart. the other thing, the tea party seems to get such big news. i never understood that. and then they take these pictures and show them all over the country. do you know how embarrassing that could be? i think when barack obama gets back in in 2012 i think we will have a whole lot more country because of what they see this man has done. the republicans have tried to get every race -- they put down the gays. i don't know who is going to be next but they have given us all a reason to get up and go vote. host: bob, republican, boston. caller: first-time caller. i give congress a-plus. i do not like what they have done. they have done everything they said what they were going to do. they have not hidden anything. their agenda was laid out and
they decide what they were going to do. they had all the votes they needed to do it. they did not need any republicans to help them. they voted for a lot of the stuff themselves. so they did a good job. what they got from that is the tea party. people say, we don't really like what you have done. so i give them an a. host: the next caller comes from fargo, north dakota. greg on independent line. caller: how are you doing today? i watch c-span all the time and i watch congress all the time on theire. and it is just two kids fighting over balls. nothing ever really gets done. they have pitted every american against each other for jobs and everything else, corporations taking over this entire country.
it reminds me of the kings and the queens and all of their majestic people around them that, when they get bored they just go out to the peasants in all the land and take whatever they can get. what everyone to. just so they have more. they have disrupted the whole morals of this country. you can see it in the television. in the programs. they are not even appropriate for kids nowadays. what used to be rated r is now rated pg-13. it is ridiculous. texting and all of that -- i was watching a program the other day -- i am not going to say who the judge was -- she said they should bury this text message in time capsule. this used to be a forward-
thinking country and now we have a bunch of illiterate people who can't even spell, can't even talk right and use the slang. it is so we kind of moved off the congressional angle there -- host: we kind of moved off the congressional and gold there. -- angle there. a email. buddy and north carolina. -- in north carolina. madison heights, michigan. david, democrat. it caller: thank you for taking my call. i give the democratic congress a + + and republican congress a failing grade.
we have had eight years of failure from them. two more years, 10 years of failure. host: would have the democrats done to earn your a + +. caller: they save america from told disaster two years ago. they implemented so many great programs. they saved on unemployment and they saved the american car companies. but they had to clean up the republicans' message that the gentleman from texas was wrong, it is the republicans of that lie, not the democrats. so, i hope america opens up their eyes and vote democrat. thank you very much. host: "the washington post" this morning. some democrats see reason for optimism, but is it just false hope?
the next call comes from wisconsin. lorin, a republican. caller: first-time caller. i watch you a lot. i can watch every morning. but just hearing the last five minutes of the democrats calling -- you can see the big troll hatred -- vitriolic hatred of ideology that i have discovered over the years you cannot argue with them. liberalism. you come up with a blank. but the truth of the matter is that congress gets an f, both parties because obama should be able to at least -- not leave the congress this year without
extending this tax cut. i just might add, that wouldn't it be appropriate to say the hatred that has been drummed up over the years toward george bush, the democrats will not extend those tax cuts because his name is on it. thank you very much. host: c for congress -- that is a tweet. cape cod, massachusetts. joe of independent mind. caller: a valid point. congress gets an f. they need to address campaign reform. neither republicans, democrats, or independents can be taken seriously when they are taking stock money and millions and even billions of dollars from
entities that would put to their agenda and special interest. no candidate can be taken seriously. we need campaign before before we can get behind a candidate. as a republican, democrat, independent, as an american. how can i take a candidate seriously if they are taking soft money from people whose interests and not aligned themselves with the people of this country. thank you. host: one member of congress is ted poe, republican of from texas and he has been on the house floor more than any other member in the 111th congress. well, tuesday he was on the house floor and he was talking about an import issue, domestic violence. but you might like to see this video. this is ted poe's speaking on the house floor and there is a young gentleman behind him -- and this goes on for five minutes. this young gentleman behind him, as you can see, is not quite interested in what ted poe has to say as perhaps some other
people are. just found that a little bit amusing to watch this young fellow not off from time to time as congressman poe spoke. i am sure it is not a reaction to what the congressman had to say, i am sure he was comfortable and just a little bit on the sleep beside britta that is from tuesday. virginia. brian, republican. go ahead. caller: first-time caller. i would like to comment a little bit about congress. i have listened to a couple of the comments made this morning. the problem we have right now is that republicans and democrats cannot get together on any issue that we have relating to this country. it is a shame that they can't do that. and i think that this health care reform that they have passed, that the democrats have passed, has really affected our
country and has affected me also as a citizen. it because i am a police officer. -- because i am a police officer, and just this year alone might premiums, ever since they passed the health care plan, my premiums have gone up twice. actually talking about going up again in -- where it. costs -- going up begin in january. this is the biggest reason premiums i have never had and i have been a lot enforcement 22 years. it's, you work for the city? is it -- host: do you work for the city? is it the city paying less or the premiums going up to the cause has increased to both? caller: well, the blue cross and blue shield, i have never seen it go up like this. the reason they have given us is because of the health care that
has passed. they are talking about it may go up again in january. this is the biggest raise we have had toward insurance in the past 20 years. like i said, i have been a lot enforcement 22 years and this is the first time i have seen its. in all of the police officers, it is affecting everyone in our community. i would just like to see the republicans and democrats try to get together on some issues. i do not like this health care reform that they have passed. i just would like to see them get together on some issues. host: would you like to see the health care bill repealed? caller: yes, i would. host: do you know who your congressman is? caller: it is periello right now. host: he is a democrat and pretty much behind in the polls. caller: robert hurt is running
against him. i had not seen where periello as i do anything for law enforcement or anybody in our community. host: gerri of independent line. -- on the independent line. caller: the previous caller is against the health care bill but what people have to remember is that the health care bill -- insurance companies are just fighting it and they will raise premiums and everything they can do right now to hope to get it repealed. congress -- and the senate, we don't want to go there. i think they are trying to really work for the middle class. all of us out here have been
paying higher taxes. if i was making $100,000, the percentage of tax i would pay per dollar would be less than what we are making. at $50,000. and people need to sit down and look at these things. and this is what obama is trying to change. he is trying to make things more fair for everybody. and the republicans -- i have watched them in hearings and in committees -- and they will come from those things and go on the senate floor in front of the cameras and a lie about what was said in those hearings in committee meetings. it is just terrible. host: this tweet from ed williams --
the next call, michael from brooklyn. democrat. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call but i would have to say congress overall, i would have to give a b +. if you went to great both parties, republican party is just out of touch. they completely f. i see representative john boehner every day with no agenda, just the same rhetoric over and over. to be fair, the system of american government fails because there is no way the democrats want republicans to do well and the republicans don't want the democrats to do well and the people in the middle get all washed up. you can't say the president has not done a lot in less than two years. you have financial reform, health care reform, expanded college loans. one thing that would do well for this country, four years, if you
cannot replay or reduce something in four years -- another president' has taken eight years to do. we should find a way to have the presidency to be six years and you would have an opportunity to see things change. but it is a shame to watch people really denigrates the president. i was watching a young man yesterday at a town hall meeting, the president had a barbecue. i happen to agree with him. i think the president should tell people, there is going to be a tax hike. for everybody -- you are going to have to pay more if you make more. i do not see how that is socialism, why that is the problem. host: the front page of "the wall street journal" this morning. mcdonalds may drop its health plan. it warned federal regulators it could drop its health insurance plan.
"wall street journal" this morning editorial. brooksville, florida. loretta, republican line. caller: good morning. i really can't understand where some of these people are coming from. it that so much has been done in this administration. healthcare needs to be repealed. all the stuff that is in this ridiculous bill and the earmarks, they are finally seeing what some of this stuff is in here. the pork is just unbelievable. it is just totally irresponsible. the taxes have no end.
we cannot envision all the taxes put upon the american public for any time a transaction is done, and deposit is being put into your account. if you will be paying 1% on all of this. it does not sound like very much. but you know what? this government is going to be in our pockets, in every avenue here. it is unconscionable. the immigration. this government is not sticking up for at the very least arizona, texas, the border states here. they need to stop holding hands with dictators. the allies are unconscionable. host: we will leave it there. wall street journal -- aig to
current senator and right in at 36%, and democrats at 22%. last call. pittsburg, john. caller: how is everybody today? i listened to the callers and the baffles me that we continue to direct our anger at congress and you really have to look at the root problems behind the scenes. who is pulling the strings, is corporate america. and i give corporate america and lobbyists a + +. they create loopholes in their favor. i am so much in favor of raising taxes on the mega wealthy because they created the laws and a law should be corrected, it has made them wealthy. host: how you -- defined mega
wealthy. caller: i saw an interview on fox, which i don't watch ridley, but party markets to startle people is a billionaire and that man has not only been an extremist on the right side but he is a bigot. and there is a guy who is against raising taxes on the wealthy because he wants to protect his wealth. that is all of these laws and they keep pushing through congress. congressmen are nothing but talking heads. you've got to look behind the curve and see who is pulling the strings and it is corporate america and the lobbyists. america, gets focused. it is not congress. that's why i give corporate america and their lobbyists a + +. host: from "the new york times" this morning. four suicides in a we take a toll on the fort hood -- on for good.
in the article, it goes on to say that in addition to gibbs, are made charged four other soldiers in connections with the killing. their release limited information about the case although a pretrial hearing for one of the accused soldiers began this week in washington, all of the striker brigade -- home of the stryker brigade.
up next, republican from texas, kevin brady. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> i trust that following my testimony, both sides will work together on this issue in the best interest of the american people, as you always do. >> whether poking a little fun at congress or dealing with issues more seriously, celebrities have often. in washington. take a look at some other causes with the c-span video library. nearly every program since 1987.
search for names you might know any time. >> washington has -- had one of the most difficult mothers of all time. crusty, domineering, self- centered woman who you would think that the mother of the father of our country would have all sorts of quotes avert taking pride and pleasure in her son and what we really don't have any. >> the first of two programs with the author's soon-to-be published part of the of george washington. the first large-scale single volume biography of our first president on c-span's "q&a." this weekend and the december, listen to a landmark supreme court cases on c-span radio. >> the record indicates that at no time during the interrogation, and prior to his confession, was he advised either of his rights to remain silent or his right to counsel or his right to consult with
counsel. >> saturday at 6:00 p.m. eastern on c-span radio. washington, d.c., 90.1, nationwide at x satellitem 132 an online at c-span radio.org. april 2, 1865, confederate president jefferson davis led richmond with the union army on this trail. this weekend on a after ward's -- after words, james swanson. find our full schedule at booktv.org. >> "washington journal" continues. host: on your screen is representative kevin brady, republican of texas and a member of the ways and means committee and the rank and member of the joint economic committee. congressman brady, congress has departed town or is the parting as we speak.
there was no vote on tax cuts. is that a gift to republicans? guest: it is it's a gift for most families or businesses waiting for clarity on where taxes were going to go. the tax bomb that will go off almost $4 trillion the beginning of next year -- had families and small business is concerned. i don't understand how congress could go home without providing that clarity. number one, it is bad for the economy. clearly consumer confidence is way down. in fact, it went down for this week. it is at an 18-month low. lower now than before stimulus. families are concerned. businesses are holding onto $2 trillion cass. they lack clarity. for congress to go home is really unforgivable. but i think what it tells us is two things is, i think this
congress intends to raise taxes. they just don't want to do it before the election. secondly, i think anytime when voters are looking for more accountability, tell us where you stand, they have done just the opposite. i think it is a big disconnect. it is a mistake. host: is clarity as important as policy? guest: you have to do both of them right. clarity would help dramatically with our economy. i think getting the policy right, which is to not raise taxes on any class of citizens or small businesses, i think during a recession, frankly, or any time, just is not a good idea. you have to get the policy. and we should have done it much earlier. host: yesterday on this program we had a fellow member, democrat from new jersey on, and here is what he had to say about voting on taxes and tax increases and defining the middle class.
>> $250,000, i think, is a good figure. that is middle-class. we need to extend also for five years the capital gains, long- term capital gains taxes. i think it is important. i think it is a big kick for small business. and the other thing is, the dividends, qualified dividend's for senior citizens. they are going to spend the money. this is what we need to, in some way, excite the economy. and then the real compromise was 1-year extension, bring the income up to $500,000. it if i had to do that to get the votes, i would do that. host: kevin brady, is there room for compromise, in your view? guest: you know, i think the compromise are to be on how we get this economy back on track. i just can't see how you just -- jump-start the economy by keeping higher taxes of the professionals and the small businesses most likely able to
move us out of this recession. families in those tax brackets have an outsized impact on consumer demand and the job creators, small businesses -- about 60% of small business income will be captured -- the tax increases are where most -- they are at least a good number of where jobs are created. it is bad policy. and even worse, given the high levels of uncertainty. host: kevin brady is our guest. republican from texas and member of ways and means committee. we will begin taking your calls in just a minute. you can also send us a tweet ask twitter.com.
federal sunset at proposal. what is that? guest: it is an effort to put the government on a diet. it is not a dramatic by it. it more like taking off the pounds sensibly. but it is modeled after 24 states. to put an expiration date on every federal program or agency, where periodically they have to justify their existence or face elimination. what it does is it forces agencies to start treating taxpayers as customers. they are great at how good a job degraded at how it -- but they are graded at how good a job they're doing. we have almost five budget separate fiveai programd, 340 different economic develop programs, 140 separate job training programs. you can't convince me they are
all doing a great job and they are not duplicating each other. so this sets up a bipartisan commission to examine these agencies. what happens is if congress does not act, they face expiration. you really do put an expiration on them and it forces congress to both listen to taxpayers and delve deeply into how to trim the budget. i think it is a good bipartisan way to do this. host: how do you get to real budget cuts if we are not talking about medicare and medicaid and social security? what percentage of the guest: there is no question that we have to find a way. it is going to be difficult to do. there are good ideas out there on social security. medicare is not getting the attention that it deserves.
on the other programs, we should not avoid identifying savings in any program in america. overtime it adds up. when you duplicate that, the more savings it is. host: saying that in doing that -- the republicans were in control from 1994 until 2006. what do you tell the voters today if you want to have the republicans in the majority? guest: if you are looking for a change in the course of direction of this country, republicans have offered that. getting spending ought -- under control. reforming congress so that these bills have time to be read in the public can examine them. we want to make sure they have a
constitutional basis. a lot of what we are proposing are mistakes we made as a party the last time we had the privilege. the republicans spent too much. week lowered the deficit and that the economy back on track. that was overshadowed by the spending. the republicans cut that down to $160 billion. now the deficit is almost nine times greater than that. we were making great strides that the debt and deficit has changed. everything has to be on the table. we are not as strong on defense as republicans are. we waste money. we will have to be tough. voters are looking for truth tellers.
on spending, on the debt crisis we will face as a country. republicans will bring those issues forward. host: south carolina, republican line. thanks for taking my call. my comment is this. i am a republican. i agree with the republican platform on most issues. i do not think most americans are concerned about the texting that goes on them as much as they are concerned about how the money is being spent. what we have seen with this bailout is stupid spending. i do not think we can afford it
anymore. that is the main concern. guest: one of the parts of the pledge is to freeze all unspent tarp in federal spending. to give the money back so we do not make it the problem grow larger. but clinton said is true. the government to tarp the stimulus, huge record deficits have been spent without the american public supporting it. a new plan as trillions of dollars without the public supporting it. now the government has huge deficits. you need to be responsible to pay this back. they have to tighten their belts. the way we spend money is so wasteful under the economy in
the country. host: democrat line. massachusetts. caller: thanks for taking my call. a couple of questions. i am a c-span junkie. i watched c-span all of the time. a few months ago, the republicans put out a proposal that everybody agreed with, including the president. when it came time to vote, the republicans voted out their own bill. i cannot understand that. how can you defend by keeping the tax rates for the rich, a large amount of deficits go to what you are always complaining about. guest: thanks for the call. i do not know what bill you were talking about specifically.
sometimes the bill is put into that major bills, and you are forced to vote against things you support. a major tax increase or a massive waste will spending are examples. one of the premises i question is keeping taxes on professionals and small businesses to play a critical role in our economy is not smart. i question the premise that this tax increase will be used to reduce the debt. so far, look at the track record of this democratic congress and white house. $700 billion of new taxes. for every $1 they raise, they spent two to new spending. if the democrats are successful in raising taxes, it will go to
expand government's, sustain in ever -- even larger the government. christina romer wrote a piece in a magazine in june that said for every increase of 1% in tax rate, you will see a 2.5% decline in the economy. you have more unemployment and fewer jobs by raising taxes. this is the president's own economic adviser telling us that. maybe that is why we see the votes we are seeing in congress. many oppose these new tax increases.
an awful lot. a difference in how the republicans governed in the past. by repealing the bailout and the stimulus by going back to the pre-bailout and pre-stimulus level. by repealing obama care and replacing it and making sure that the frustration that voters have that these bills are being read and dozens put together, so it is impossible to know how a
lawmaker votes. that may be the biggest change in governance by republicans. host: independent line. good morning to you. caller: i have two questions for the rep. number one is he mentioned the tax cut for the wealthy will expire and it would affect the economy. we have had these tax cuts in effect since 2000 or 2001. if they worked so well, why are we in such an economic distress now? what i see in the newspaper that the tax cuts have been used to buy 500 foot yachts. there is another guy with a $50 million yacht. the chairman of china says it
cost $4 to make an ipod, and we charge hundreds of dollars. i think the problem is the profit. i think it is time the people of america know we need to share in some of these expected profits. why this and i've pot have to cost so much? ipod have to cost so much? guest: the tax cuts spur the economy under president bush -- did spur the economy under president bush. they were helpful in getting the economy back on track both in the recession, to help us rebound from the 9/11 in financial crisis. the president has been trying to deal with it, but i think his
policies are wrong. you are talking about billionaires' over seas but rather professionals in america that stayed in college to get that advanced degrees who have launched their own small businesses and have taken risks and run of their debt to try to survive, and now they are succeeding. why are we punishing the professionals of small businesses whose success have helped grow this economy? these groups pay an outside burden of our federal government. the top 5% wage earners pay a quarter or more of all federal income tax. they pay almost two-thirds. keeping the new taxes on them is not the solution. getting government spending under control is the solution. at what point does the national debt -- here is a question from
twitter. guest: we are in the yellow caution arizona. our annual deficits are worse than that. -- cautionary zone. our annual deficits are worse than that. -- we are running the third worst deficit on the globe. if it continues the way it does today, it will go of nearly 100% of our economy. economists tell us we will be at trouble. growth slows dramatically. from steady growth of america, 3.5%, will go to that sluggish european rate of 2%.
if you are satisfied with the economy today, you will be satisfied with it whenever debt consumes much of our dollars and resources. we will get in the red zone if congress does not change its ways. host: republican line, florida. caller: i have a couple of questions. they are not just mine. they are from a lot of people i talk to. why do we give more money to every country in the world? how much we give to all these countries in the world. i would like to have some way of getting that information on c- span so we know where our tax money does go. foreign countries. my second question is the imf.
i have a lot of literature from my congressmen in tallahassee. a very nice young man sent me quite a bit of literature. i scanned through it. it made me sick to my stomach. it dawned on me -- i do not know how much we have given this year. [unintelligible] alan boyd. guest: unfortunately, i do not know the answer to the first one. you may have been listening in on conversations we were having earlier this week, trying to figure out how much money we do spend in foreign aid. our government is so large, it is difficult to know. i think some is well spent on
security issues, stabilization issues, things that can prevent bigger problems from occurring. all too often, we miss the mark on that. i come from a small business background. chamber of commerce background and businesses tell you about 50% of advertising dollars is wasted. they do not know which percent. i am not sure we know which part is wasted. i have to check on what the funding would be on that for the organization. i do know that the u.s. plays an outside wall as well in the imf. their duties around the world -- i have to check on that for you. the initial question is how much do we spend and where does it go? host: here is an e-mail from
martha's vineyard. guest: i do not think we should increase taxes on anyone, especially professionals and small businesses, which is key to economic recovery. on the second question? host: what is a small business? guest: the government generally defines it as having 500 workers or less. i think most people look at small businesses as 25 workers or less. i think mid-sized companies with 300-500 workers. for the government, eligibility for programs, generally it is
500 workers or so, which is bigger than what i think most people think of. host:here is a tweet. guest: i have to disagree with that, especially given the recession. the tax on 9/11 that destroyed millions of american jobs almost overnight. i think every economist agrees that tax relief, especially on businesses, families, capital gains and dividends, which jumped -- jump-start the stock market, all of that was very helpful. whatever this president is doing, our president is doing right now is not working. we are 14 months into this recovery supposedly. our unemployment rate is higher
than when the recession ended. with thousands of fewer jobs than when the recession ended. many americans believe the economy is in bad shape and will not get in better shape any time soon. the threat of higher taxes is going to do more harm. host: you were in congress when the tax cuts were passed in 2001. what was the thought process behind allowing them to expire? guest: it was the result of a voting rule. to get past that 60 vote margin, there had to be limitations on the length and size of the tax. it was a function of the senate that it did that. the result is that you see a staggered expiration date. it is usually complicating for
people trying to manage their taxes. that is not the way you should do tax relief. the best way to jump-start the economy is to give certainty and prominence on these issues. we have to take a look at that as we go forward. host: democrats line, maryland. caller: i wanted to say a couple of points. it seems the bush and ministration, balancing the budget, to fund other projects, even though that money was supposed to be for social security. we have been spending that limits. that is a lot of deficit we have. to let the taxes
expire is not a worse economic idea than the war in iraq, which i think has cost us millions and billions of dollars at a time when we did not have the money to chase that ventured down. guest: i think protecting our security is not a risk. not just monetarily. it affects the lives of soldiers who do not return as well as those who do. we know the price of a terrorist attack in the united states. i do not think we had a choice. i supported the president in this war and continue to. this new president receive strong support from republicans
in securing this nation. it is our number one priority. the price of not securing it is far better. host: the next call is from atlanta on our independent line. caller: good morning. i am a first-time caller. i just wanted to say i am happy to finally hear a representative to come on to is meant that there was waste during the bush administration. now the president obama is in office, we have to spend and raised taxes in order to get this economy back under control. where i come from, $350,000 is a
lot of money. i know a lot of professionals that do not make that amount. we need to get a grip on the numbers. anyone making $250,000 or more, taxing them, to me makes sense. the 1% or 2% with money get their money through corporate loopholes. guest: i was talking about wasting spending and not wasted years. republicans had control of congress. no question about that. why would be punished the professionals and small-business people who create and do good jobs in america and we want to encourage more americans to be successful in their lives.
in dollars that will not go to reduce the debt. it will go to more spending and bigger government. i do not think it makes good economic sense. i know how government works. we start at taxing the millionaires today. then it is those that make 200,000 as wealthy. then 100,000. then it gets deeper into the middle class. if you do not control the spending, it will come back to more americans and families and small businesses with ever- growing numbers of taxes and we will all be poorer for it. host: here is what someone treated in.
guest: it was important to get the economy back on track. between state, local, and federal taxes until into the third or fourth month of each year, to pay their taxes before they start working for themselves, when i see the level of waste in how we spend those precious tax dollars, it is discouraging. when the government says we did the spending in you need to do the pain for it, and the way the government wastes those dollars, but you need to pay more -- congress created this problem on the debt. not by punishing wage earners in america. host: the next call comes from connecticut on the republican line. caller: it morning.
i was really discouraged with the new contract in america that was put out lately. nowhere is it mentioning so security. i wrote my first letter is considering social security back in 1961. there were two republican and democratic senators at the time. there was a ponzi scheme. it has gotten worse over the years. everybody tries to do something when it comes along and they tried to put band-aids on what is fundamentally a problem in the system. host: what would you like to see done with it? do you except social security? caller: i am 81. i have been accepting it for a long time. my biggest thing for this
representative, since he is from texas, there are three districts that were able to opt out of social security at one time. they have private plans that are superior then what sells a security returns. when president bush tried to go to an individual system, the republicans did not back him up on it. host: would you like to see a private system or option? caller: an option. people are paying far more for their social security now than they think they are. guest: this is a knowledgeable caller. there are counties that were given the option to opt out of
social security. they had a couple of votes. the second was overwhelming. they did not wait for the stock market or gamble it away but put it in an interest-bearing account. safe and secure. over the years, because they have invested in real assets, and the value of the money has grown, their social security benefits are now roughly 2.5 times bigger than traditional social security. rather than spending that money, they put it into real values, real accounts, that for their accounts. now they have very strong benefits as a result. i serve on so security subcommittees. we did town hall after town
hall. i am frustrated with my democratic friends on this. they would demonize the issue and refuse to sit down. they even threatened rahm emanuel and threatened democrats who wanted to work with us to come up with a way to preserve social security once and for all. both parties will have to solve social security. the challenges are so big the banks were talking about one model. we must ask the american public if that is a better way for the future, especially younger people, to create some value over time. i am convinced there is a way we can solve the problem. host: our next caller comes from
pennsylvania. caller: thank you. i am a first-time caller. i have a question for rep brady. why is it that the republicans, with the whole thing they say, regular people like myself, you do not tell the truth about the tax cuts. you want to privatize social security and veterans' benefits. it's our social security had not been tied into wall street, people would be in walking on the street. guest: those are the same scare tactics.
the truth is that we know it is going bankrupt. everyone knows medicare has serious financial problems. the truth telling is it is not acceptable. if we want those programs to remain sustainable, i think the public understands that. the government funded pensions were too rich for taxpayers to try to sustain them. we need to look at the entitlements. we need to make sure they are still around. host: last call from shreveport,
louisiana. caller: god bless c-span and all they do. i have not missed a c-span show in 10 years. a country divided, just like right before the civil war, i hate is. when we were going to do a health care bill, i am glad it was caught on c-span, we have got to sit down and work a health-care where it will work for all americans. we need to sit down and do the same thing with social security. nancy pelosi has been in charge of everything that has been spent out of washington for the last four years. she has been in charge of the money. republicans took a meat cleaver
to fannie mae and freddie mac. god bless you. you have been real nice. god bless america. guest: things. as we are finishing up, there was an earlier clip with a congressman on the floor speaking as a young child was nodding off. that was his great-grandson. he was with his grand paul all week. it has been a big week. i think he just got proved out. host: it was amusing to us. congressman paul was talking about a serious topic. he is proudly going to be a very famous grandson. he is nodding right over there. [laughter] guest: in congress, i felt the same thing. i sympathize with him. host: thanks for being with us.
next up, we will look at independent voters with a democratic congressman from alabama. here is a 2010 campaign update. >> there was a square off yesterday in the second debate for a senate seat. here is a little bit of what they had to say on the economy and federal spending. >> the war will be $1 trillion collecting from people who are ripping off the government and other uncollected payments to the government is another trillion dollars. stop giving tax breaks to the millionaires and billionaires. tax breaks that my opponent supports is almost another trillion. >> let's institute a spending cap in washington, d.c. it would be returned to 2008 levels under myself. the government should only hire
one person for every two that leave government service. let's give every american the possibility of designating up to 10% of their federal tax dollars toward paying down the debt. >> a reporter is joining us on the phone this morning with the associated press. any game changer moments from this debate yesterday? >> what was interesting for the listeners is they got to hear more of the stark contrast between the two and where they stand on economic issues and social issues. and they got into a nice tussle on the environment, immigration, and abortion. >> what are the latest polls showing? >> we have a third confirmation that barbara boxer is pulling ahead according to a public
policy institute of california. she has 42% against 35% on the arena. -- fiorina. >> has her base become more energized? how had she been able to pull ahead? >> the democrats have a big voter advantage. registration gives her that edge. she was the first to go on the airwaves. she had a negative attacks on her opponent while she was working at hewlett-packard. that has reached a lot of people but some advertisements has stepped up for fiorina.
>> how much money as she put in so far? >> $5.5 million. her net worth is between 25 and over $100 million. that is the estimate. she could put in more money if she wanted to. >> what about the money barbara boxer has put into this race? she has received a lot of fund raising from president obama. >> first lady michelle obama is expected to come out to california next month to help barbara boxer fund raised. the president has been out already. she has a lot of support because of the california establishment. she has been around for three terms and has made a name for herself. >> how much money has she spent on her campaign? >> i want to say a 12 to one advantage.
i believe they were about $90 million in fund raising. >> you mentioned president obama had been out there several times. michelle obama will come out later in october. are they short of high-profile republicans paying attention to the race of her opponent? >> it is still a competitive race. she has made several trips outside of the state in trying to get backing. remember the u.s. chamber of commerce has said we will help her and put out ads against boxer. you do have supports from business backing. >> the governor's race in california is one of the most competitive and expensive races as well. what is the update with meaghan
whitman and the maid she hired for many years? >> the former ceo of ebay put in the most money than -- any candidate in history for the gubernatorial race. a lot of it has been put towards hispanic voters which will likely make a 15% of the voters this election. she seems to be making headway. what happened yesterday is that a los qantas attorney gloria aldridge representing her former made seeking a claim that she whitman knew she was an illegal immigrant and fired her for political gain when she was running for governor. it is hard to say on this. we are waiting on more
development and to see proof that whitman could have known that the housekeeper was in the u.s. legally -- illegally. we are waiting for copy of administration leaders that may have tipped off that her maid had a discrepancy in her social security number. the story is still developing. >> judy lin with the associated press. thanks very much. >> thanks. >> for more information on campaign 2010, go to our web site at c-span.org/politics. host: our next guest served in congress for 18 years. he was a democrat -- is a democrat and is currently chairman of an organization in washington. he is also a blue dog.
a new study was done on independent voters. congressman kramer, tell us how you define independent voters in this study? guest: we put this research forum to gather, up with former members that were original blue dogs. in north alabama, there was reaction to the clinton administration. the democrats were super majority. as a former member, we put the research together. one of the issues we wanted to tackle is to get a conversation going with the independent voter. many talk about where the voter
is coming from. why are they independence? what are they frustrated with? why are they so angry? in this poll lead to be released yesterday, a lot of bad news from both sides of the aisle. people are angry. the number of people calling themselves are rising. they believe the government is broken. neither party gets it. the rhetoric is dominating this. they blame the news media, the 24 hour news cycle for constantly listening to the far left and far right. host: what are people angry about it? guest: the priorities. if you look at how they describe
their member of congress, and a open ended question on what were you would use to describe how congress is working, how would she wants year member of congress to work differently than how they are working. this is what the blue dogs are all about. we want give-and-take. we want people who do not look at their party agenda first. we want them to look at their district. we want them to work across the aisle with each other. what struck me was after almost losing my job in 1994, i was not representing the way i was working to my district very well. it was very connected to the federal government. i used my relationships.
i had many republican and democratic friends around congress as well. that lost boys of the middle is what we wanted to capture in this poll. i think they captured it very well. economic issues are of men the most concern for them. they view the agenda as being too political and partisan oriented. they are worried about their jobs. a lot of them are in tough situations. they are in jobs that they are not that happy with. the national debt and deficit. it is important to them. when you ask the question of what frustrates them the most, they say the cost of health care is what they go home and worry about. they worry about their economic situation. i think we have our work cut out
for us. we make sure that the middle of the line voter is not lost in this shuffle. in this survey, they believe that two parties had become polarized into extremes. guest: that is right. party agenda this far not about them. economic issues, where is my job coming from? my child that graduated from college, will he have a chance to get the job we want him to have. what is happening to this country? they are anxious. i do not think they see the role in absence of that. host: we are talking about how independence think, and we especially want to hear from independence. here are the numbers to call.
the party lines are up at the top there. please allow some time between your calls. you were a blue dog, a conservative democrat. guest: when we put this group together in 1994, there were 18 of us this started talking to one another. we said we are not standing up to leadership the way we should. we are not working as well with our friends across the aisle as we need to be. we are not projecting that there are these middle of the rovers. we intend to see a bipartisan group.
ops we were not able to do that. capri after many years in the wilderness. we were not able to do it. host: the democrats had a huge majority compared to today. but the group has grown. they wield more power? guest: they do, but they get lost in partisanship. the way they work is the way the american people would work. i do not think they are projecting out as well as they can. in the next congress, we do not know what is. to happen in november. many may lose their jobs in -- what is going to happen in november. many may lose their jobs.
we will see which party survives. i would think the blue dogs would be in a good position to get this thing done. host: how did congress rate, the democrats, republicans, obama? guest: 36% thought the president was doing a good job. 13% of the democratic caucus were doing a good job. 5% of the republicans were doing a good job. terrible numbers for democrats, republicans in congress. profileo.j. simpson's would be more of a positive reaction. host: if you just look at those numbers, democrats are twice as popular as republicans. guest: those numbers are so incredibly low.
36% is looking pretty good for the president among independent voters. i do not think the president would see it that way. it depends on how frustrated people are with both sides of the aisle. host: a look at all of the back numbers guest:. guest: vothere is a website funded by the late anne wexler and robert walker, a well-known republican from pennsylvania. host: are the republicans going to take over in november? guest: it remains to be seen. anybody who runs for office will want to see where the independent voter is coming from a host:. the first caller is from
fayetteville, north carolina. caller: i have a question and it is basically saying, blue dogs are a distain to the democratic party. they do not stand for democratic principles. i am a democrat through and through. we have a disdain for blue dogs. the last election on the vote for health care, they almost screwed it up big time. that is what we democrats vote for. if you want to be a republican, you should go join the republican party. stay away from the democratic party. host: we got the message. it is like a republican may be called a rhino. guest: i have gotten that reaction from back home from my democratic basis.
we are elected not to carry an agenda or a party, -- so many people came up to me in my much more conservative district. i have republicans come up to me and say i vote for you because of the job you do. it is a profile to represent all of the people there and a fine ever jobs by the issues and not the party agenda. host: where does the term blue dog come from? guest: we struggled for months on a name to call ourselves. it was about capturing and angry, frustrated, conservative democrat. we were not looking for a label that would be identified as a republican or democratic label.
we decided that a yellow dog was not quite. there was a louisiana folk tale that there was a dog strangled until he turned bloat and they cast it aside. that captured the image that we wanted with this artist from louisiana who gave us permission to use that wild-eyed blue dog look. host: brunswick, georgia, republican line. caller: you sound like a very nice person, but i was like for you to enter me this question. how can you call yourself an independent -- all a democrat has to do is say listen. i am going to vote differently,
because i am an independent. when it comes right down to its, you always if you have a deep behind your name, you are going to vote democrat. they go to you and say what can we do to make you change your vote? you get a little freebies and all. guest: what i would say to you is my democratic base does not consider me much of a democrat from time to time. the republican base is in response to the way you vote. my voting profile was right down the middle. i often voted with my republican friends when we had a republican president. i hope i did and what i hope a
lot of blue dogs do is vote on where your district is coming from. not on where your party comes from. i regularly step in my leadership and one person cannot get votes on tough issues. i think a lot of our blue dogs do that regularly. host: rock hill, md., independent,. caller: it really amazes me. i am in my sixties. i have been in business for myself for the last several years. people are running based on their principles. the blue dog democrats and blue dog republicans. what we see is there is so much ideology. the gentleman that just called and said he is a true democrat -- that is ideology.
an old truck conservative republican is an ideology and friedrich ultraconservative republican is an ideology. -- ultra-conservative republican is an ideology. we have lost all common sense. the average person in the country that has money to spend for himself is. to make sure it is spent the right way and it will help the nation. the senate, congress, president, republican, democrat, can spend money for our interest to drive this country and make a successful and prosperous is totally crazy. guest: that is an independent voter if ever i have heard one. that is the response of a get back home from a lot of my
constituents that consider themselves independent voters. what is interesting about the poll released is getting to the independent voter and the voter likely to vote, start talking to those 1000 people that have that conversation. when you get to that job description of what they want a member of congress to do, they want someone who is not afraid to be independent of the party. they want a problem solver that is flexible and a decision making progress on issues. that is where i think the independent voter sit out there and this is not going on in congress. they get frustrated and turned off by other parties. [unintelligible] host: some say we do not believe in a two-party system. guest: when we ask how long you
have considered yourself as an independent, 68% say we always considered ourselves an independent. 32% say some version of a new type of voters. that number, a growing number of independent voters is a very significant trend in this country. host: how you define them? did they use it to be a republican or democrat. they have voted once or twice for the other party? guest: mills are subjective issues. -- but those are subjective issues. they say they were turned off by the parties or the partisan rhetoric coming out of d.c. they're tired of hearing of the party agenda is on the 24 hour news cycles.
they want people to come here, give-and-take, solve the problem. host: what percentage of the american population is independent according to your polls? guest: it is a growing number. they thought around 30%. one person compared that with numbers in the 1970's. a huge growth in the numbers of people who consider themselves independent voters. host: another continuing resolution was passed. do people back home care? guest: they do not understand it. they believe congress does not regularly come up with a budget for themselves the way they have to in their household. back home, and we have a lot of
dot employees. they're just depend on the ability of the federal government to consistently pass things they can rely on. they see the party is jockeying to promote each party agenda rather than looking after the budgets host:. if you were currently in congress, would you have been encouraging the democrats to vote on the tax bill the guest:? ?- guest: yes, i would have. host: north carolina, republican line. caller: the morning. let me see if i can throw out a couple of things to get our arms around this situation. i am not a member of the tea
party, because there is no such thing. i share some of the thinking that they supposedly have. we are in a big mess as a country. look at the economy, immigration, all of the things going on. i just wrote a $900 worth of checks and send them out yesterday. -- sent them out yesterday. one is charlotte n.c. maybe that check will get their midnight tonight, so i will not have enough funds in my checking account. i have to transfer money from my money market account to cover the check i sent to make sure that -- and host:
-- host: what is your question? what would you like to see congress do? [unintelligible] host: thank you. guest: he is struggling at home, trying to find a way to pay his bills. you see congress stays through the nice and passes this because they cannot get the budget done. it has been a tough year. people around the country are anxious. they look at everything around the economy. they even look at environmental issues. i think they just view that congress has gotten so bogged down, they cannot address basic issues that affect their household. .
$650 billion tax cut to the wealthiest corporations. democrats said no, so ronald reagan said let's get $150 billion to all companies, and every democrat from all producing states voted on behalf of the oil companies. the blue dogs have been a pain ever since. host: would you consider yourself a yellow dog democrat? caller: i am for fairness in this country. basically the blue dogs have been on the payroll of lobbyists ever since john gross from louisiana. i am sure he was a big leader of this thing. host: you have been getting a lot of anger for of some of our democratic house -- from some of
our debordemocrat friends and liberal friends. guest: the divide between the democratic base, republican base. the republican base also has its splinters and challengers. the moderates are caught and the middle represented both sides of the aisle. some of this goes back to the with the districts have been drawn. we have a lot of sick very republican conservatives seats. it is the members in the middle that did not want to see them compromise. their job agenda it description is very different. your challenge is to come up here and do the job, represent all of the people, and then people get frustrated to some extent with the way you do that. what i do that kolbe is record the communicate with everyone back home, including the
democratic base that would often get frustrated that i was not voting with my party enough, they wanted to see me do this or do that. i reminded them i am there to represent everyone in my district, looked after my district issues. if we are so polarized one way or another, this does not work. that is what the independent voter is saying. they say i listened to the parties that day in and day out, and i just want people to compromise and give-and-take and make this place work. that is the challenge. host: you have spent most of your time under republican control. a few years under democratic control at the beginning and the end. what is the difference between when you were first elected in 1991 -- 1990 and between when you left?
guest: mainly when i served in the minority my district had thousands and thousands of jobs connected to the federal budget. we were in the home of the tennessee valley authority. the federal government reigns supreme in my district. my ability to advocate for those budget issues, the issues with the federal government and i needed relationships with my republican chairs when i was in the minority. i had to develop those relationships. i say get may be a more effective legislator. from 1980 to 1990 before i was elected to congress, i was in the courtroom prosecuting murder, rape, robbery cases. the democrats were a supermajority. the leadership pressures were
different. then that rolled into 1994. issing changes could. -- i think change is good. the senate cycle flows over as well. i have served during a time of great change. the democrats came back into the majority. i was a more senior member at that time and moved to the appropriations committee. i most valued my set of relationships with my colleagues that i have respect for on pulte sites of the aisle. hos-- on both sides of the aisl. caller: mr. cramer, why would vote for you in a
heartbeat. i would like you to come to texas and represent our states. i do not think anyone has defined as well as you have. i want you to know i appreciate it. secondly, i would like to ask you one question. let's get back to the economy for a second. i think that is important. obama wants to double exports. my question is, exports of what? i just bought a side-by-side frigidaire refrigerator. i am a local -- i bought it at a local pond store. it was made in mexico. i did what we all need to realize is we have lost our manufacturing base. guest: i wanted to ask the caller a number of questions. i wanted to ask himself how long
he considered himself an independent and what made him more considering himself an independent if he had not been one for very long. he is frustrated with the economic-related issues, trade- related issues of this country. we have lost their edge in manufacturing. my district used to employ more people and garment manufacturing, production of t- shirts, jeans, cotton. we have lost those jobs. those jobs are now around the world of the products are coming from all around the world as well. it is interesting to listen to those independent voters, their reaction to the way we should work here rather than the democratic base or republican base. host: when it comes to democratic voters and the health care legislation passed -- when it comes to independent voters and health care of legislation passed, what did you find?
guest: it was economic-related issues. but the cost of health care was important to them. we even had a question that let them react to an agenda of of continued reform of health care or left over health care issues, and that was way down the list from economic issues. i think the independent voters seems to look at the health care issues as an economic issue. i think perhaps they saw the agenda got a head of the economic issues. there were lost in the detail of what health care reform was all about. host: did you find they wanted repeal? did they want to continue? guest: we did not get into the repeal issue, so i cannot give you a clear answer on that. it did see the cost of health care issue is important issue to them.
caller: blue dogs to me are really republicans, but that is not my question. my question is that back in the beginning of 2009, all the republicans, the real republicans, stopped calling themselves republicans. look at the polls. they started calling themselves independents. to meet all the polls and keep focused on independent voters. i cannot believe that everyone is focused on the independent folkvotes, but there is not a te identity. to me i do not get the way the
blue dogs are going on with the independents are saying. they come from the republican party, but then they're independent now. guest: i think this caller and one of the other callers that got into historical profiling of the blue dogs. we did not come into existence until 1994. and the conservative democrats have found a way to come together from time to time to time. they are mainly from southern district experiencs. this time at the blue dogs are all over the country. the 54 members are from new york state, california, far west and far east and as well as the south.
let me say this, i think most blue dogs would not say they are independent. they consider themselves to be conservative democrats. they are democrats, but they are democrats that go their own way over the issues based on whether district is coming from. that is what i had to do in order to show my district i was affected for them and was not just a democrat, but was a conservative that will look after their issues, regardless of party labels. host: jackson, mississippi. democrat. caller: i would like to comment on blue dogs. the blue dogs did not do what is best for the country. they cater to their rich people, as well as rich corporations. these tax cuts that are talking about for the top 2% have been in effect for 10 years now. where are all of the jobs?
we have the blue dog democrat here, but he would be for expending those tax cuts for the top 2% or 3%. president obama is proposing we extend the tax cuts for the middle-income people. those are the ones that would stimulate the economy by putting it back into the economy. the rich, it is shown that you would get very little stimulus from extending those tax cuts. host: what is your second point? caller: the second is for the way c-span does it scuttling of gas. i notice when a democrat comes on, you make sure you counter a person with a person that is very clearly a republican. but when the republican comes on, you often put someone like a blue dog democrat or independent or someone speaking about foreign affairs you cannot really tell if they are a democrat or republican. the bias is very clearly in
favor of the republicans and conservatives. host: thank you for that comment. you have gotten beat up from both sides. do you think president obama has done a good job? guest: i think in some ways he has done a good job. the frustrating thing for me is to watch a democratic- controlled house and senate and dadministration. the president has good folks working there that came from the congress, the house as well as the senate side. i santhink they have struggled d had the confidence of the american people but there still challenged and that their leadership role has changed. it is corn to change after the november election cycle.
the president will only be the president for two years. conservative democratic members can support the president when it translates and makes sense and is good legislation for their district. it cannot support the president and that agenda when it does not make sense to their congressional district. there will be devised. often we go to the white house as a member in small groups to engage in in discussions about issues. i have a lot of nassim jobs. i regulate obsess about where the jobs will come from. -- i have a lot of nasa jobs in my district. you look at that as how it affects your congressional drastic, where your employees are coming from and you vote according to your conscience.
the administration takes the lead in the congress reacts to that. -- and the congress reacts to that. and i think the administration came around and we had a good deal that passed last night. host: is nancy pelosi and effective leader? guest: she is a difficult leader. in she was the ranking member of the house intelligence committee. we worked very well together. right after 9/11 we have a joint hearing there. i think she has a liberal base in the caucus that too often pushes an agenda that is not in the best interests of conservative members. i think they then have to react to that and stand up to the leadership would need to. i was in her office many times me, a, and i was even there when
foley was in the house. they took their tumble along the way. she has her work cut out for her. host: bud cramer, chairman and co-founder of the blue dog research forum. if people want to see the new poll done by the blue dog research forum, where can they go? guest: waexlerwalker.com. host: coming up next, a look at that settlement companies and new rules they face. here's a news update from c-span radio. >> new economic news out this morning. the commerce department reporting that the economy expanded at a feeble 1.7% annual rate in april to june quarter. that is a sharp slowdown from
the 3.7% growth rate lock in the first quarter. applications for jobless benefits dropped last week for the third time in four weeks. a sign that analysts say employers are cutting fewer jobs. that decline returns jobless claims to the same level they were two weeks ago. top regulators working on the financial overhaul bill appeared before the senate banking committee today with ben bernanke among those scheduled to testify. also, the heads of the fdic and sec. congress has left much of the substance of the new rules to the regulators. that will be live on c-span television and radio. american international group has made a deal to repay the
government. the treasury department will swap debt it currently holds for common stock and sell those shares over time. aig got a government bailout package worth $180 billion. and, at deepening financial crisis at the postal service get some attention today when the independent commission that oversees the postal service will deliver its verdict on a request for at 2 cent increase to 46 cents for the cost of mailing a letter. the postal service lost $3.8 billion last year. it is on track to lose 7 billion this year and next. those are some of the latest headlines on c-span radio. >> this weekend on c-span3, american history tv. discovering what the presidential elections of 1824 and 1828 or not only important, but also to of the most scandalous. after 90 years why the 19th
amendment still has an impact on race and gender relations in america. 48 hours of people and defense telling the american story. all weekend, every weekend. american history to be on c- span3. >> listen to a landmark supreme court cases on c-span radio. >> i believe the record indicates that at no time during the interrogation and prior to his confession was he advised either of his rights to remain silent or his right to counsel or his right to consult with cancel. >> miranda vs. arizona this saturday on 6:00 eastern on c- span radio. nationwide on x and satellite radio talk channel 132 and online at c-spanradio.org. host: i want to introduce you
to a staff writer with "the washington post." she is here today to talk to us about that settlement companies and some of the new rules those companies are facing. first of all, what are debt settlement companies? guest: they are very particular part of the debt relief industry. they promised to reduce the amount of debt that you owe it to your creditors. a lot of other firms and nonprofits offer to reduce short interest rates or the amount of payments. they promise to reduce the amount of debt that you owe. that has become under a lot of scrutiny in the past couple of months. they tend to be for-profit companies. some of the companies involved in this actually provide other services as well, but that settlement is a for-profit
business, and that has what caught the attention of many of the regulators. >> if you have credit card debt, please listen. a program has been introduced that could reduce your debt, decrease the amount you owe, and allow you to make one low payment per month. you may qualify for an assistance program that can have you get free. we offer the successful alternative to a bankruptcy, a credit counseling or taking on new loans. thousands of americans have qualified for this new program. call for a free evaluation now. it is confidential. it just takes a few minutes to see if you can join the problem. -- it just takes a few minutes to see if you can join the program. call for free consultation. it relieved and become debt
free. -- get relief and become debt free. host: how big of a business is this? guest: it is a very big business. custodies estimate they settled between $2 billion of consumer debt. -- companies estimate they settled between 2 billion of consumer debt. there are roughly 1000 companies that handle this kind of problem. host: do they all do the same thing basically? guest: the way it works is you call the company into your saddled with credit card debt. they promised to reduce the amount of debt and the way they do that is typically charge you a sign that be to enroll in the program. they also charge you a portion of years total debt that is zero. somewhere between 20% of the amount you owe. on top of the debt. a lot of time the service fees
are taken before one that has been settldebt has been settled. host: what is the advantage of consumers going into these groups? guest: there were changes five years ago that really made it tough for people that were under a crushing amounts of debt to file for bankruptcy. they're really looking for another avenue to take care of personal finances. that is when this type of industry began to blossom. they're looking at it as a possible way out. if i can negotiate to get 50% of the debt reduced, and it is a good deal for me at the end of the day. host: had many of these are sponsored by the credit-card companies? guest: they are typically independently financed and independently run. there were some issues of few years ago with the relationship between credit counseling firms
and credit-card companies. these are businesses that are looking to do this on their own, and in some cases, according to regulators, taking advantage of consumers. host: what are some of the new rules that just took effect this week? guest: this week that sec has said they must let you know, it's the entire program is expected to cost, and a good idea of how long will take you to look through the program. sometimes they will promise to as little as three years, but the reality as it can stretch out congress than that. they have to be more transparent in their practices. next month it will begin the inning and vance peace in the industry. -- banning advanced fees in the industry. host: have to the companies make money if they're not charging a fee? guest: that this argument of the
industry. they say taking on the customer typically is very difficult and expensive for them. it can cost up to $1,000 for them just to get someone to sign up any and all that person through the process. if they need the advance fees to six that -- they say they need the advance copies to survive we may see companies go out of business. host: how many companies are there in the u.s.? , and the clients are they certain? guest: the number of clients are difficult to say, but the industry groups estimate there are 1000 companies that are operating in this arena and has settled roughly $2 billion worth of consumer debt. host: there must be a lot of money to be made. guest: that is one thing they're hoping to do. that is another reason why
regulators began to look at them. there were some companies that were operating as legitimate firms, but this is an arena that is ripe for fraud. there are several cases with lawsuits against them. host: we are talking about the debt settlement companies and new rules that go to affect this week. ylan mui is our desk. -- is our guest. we have set aside a fourth line this morning. if you have been or are a debt settlement client, we would like to hear your story. we're going to begin with the democrats and houston, texas. go ahead. caller: good morning.
and i want to know about the reverse mortgage. for the people that when they go to -- are these government programs or pride that companies? -- or are they private programs? guest: that it's hard to say without knowing your situation. one idea that regulators are trying to crack down is some companies are trying to align themselves with government subsidies and government stimulus packages. that is something to be very careful about. in fact, for the debt settlement industry, that is one area that the ftc has been done before is insinuating they are involved with government programs when they're really not. this is something i would be
very careful about. host: these are not government programs? guest: these are not. there was a government report about some of them claimed there were part of government programs. this is not anything that is funded by the federal government at all. host: the next question comes from zero weatherford, texas. go ahead. caller: i think what you fail to tell the callers as some of these companies to have to have over $10,000 in debt before they even take you on as a client. then they fail to tell you that -- i will not give the companies i have talked to -- you can call the creditors yourself and can
negotiate. i owed $140,000 in medical expenses. i negotiated myself 6 cents on the dollar. they stopped the interest. i am still paying on it now, but a lot of the companies will not accept you because they will not make a profit unless you have $10,000 worth of debt or more. guest: that is a very good point. these programs are designed for people with very excessive debt. this is not something if you only have 3000 or $4,000 worth of debt. you can do this yourself. a lot of times you can pick up the phone, call your credit card company and tell them you are in a tough situation and may be able to work out a deal. what the industry will say is that a lot of people in this situation do not have the capacity, the knowledge for had to negotiate and how to handle finances. that is where these companies are stepping in to help them
out. host: joining us on the phone is the executive director of settlement companies. these new regulations we have been talking about that are going into effect, what is your view of these? guest: we recognize a good deal of these. we have require the types of disclosures and standards that the ftc is recommended. the one aspect we do not agree with is the advanced fee band. this is where we cannot collect any fees until we settle a debt. of course we cannot settle the debt for a consumer until they have enough money saved up so that we can actually negotiate with the trader and get the money over to the creditor. it puts us in a position where we are providing services month
after month for consumers but not receiving any payment for it. host: do you have any questions or david dukefor david leuthold? guest: there are some that operate with out an advanced fee. how do you feel about these companies and can the industry survive under that model? guest: there have been a few models like that, but frankly everyone i know that says that is only providing that feed program to a limited number of clients. -- that fee program to a limited number of clients. most of the company's that have
been providing some sort of fee based on how much they save the clients have also been charging a monthly fee along the way. this is one thing we would really love to be allowed to be able to do. again, the companies i know of that are now operating on that basis are only doing so on a partial basis. we will all have to do that starting at the end of october. it will be really interesting to see how many companies are able to effectively manage that process affectively. already we have seen a good number of companies that have decided and realize they cannot afford to continue on that basis and have gone out of business. host: what about the rules that you tell customers upfront, this is what it will cost? do you think that is only fair? guest: totally. that is one of the reasons i
helped co-found this company back in 2005. and right from the very beginning we have required that exact disclosure to be made to every client that has signed up for one of our programs. host: finally, what is the advantage of going to one of your company's it rather than calling the credit card companies yourself? guest: some people may be able to do it on their own, maybe with one creditor or two. most people that come to the program has six or seven creditors. even the national consumer law centeoss center looked at the question as can the consumer settle debts themselves? what they find is they cannot. they did find that some consumers would have a creditor and say i will settle your
$5,000 debt for $3,000, but what we want is $1,500 today at $1,500.30 days. what they find is the repayment terms were pretty impractical. host: do these companies sell in bulk like mortgages are sold? guest: no, most of the settlements we make with credit- card companies are on an individual basis. there are some companies we deal with we are able to maybe deal with 100 accounts at a time, but even those accounts have to be then be handled on an individual basis by the settlement companies. host: are any of your company's sponsored by the credit card companies? guest: not at all.
we are the only true independent industry that just represents the consumer 100%. we are funded totally by the fees that the consumer pays to us. host: david leuthold, thank you for being on the phone with us. the next call comes from philadelphia. edward. caller: good morning. i do not know how the credit card companies can survive. the company it -- the country is full of drug addicts, no matter what agreement unit with them, they will not pay anyhow. guest: there has been an issue for the credit-card companies are the past few years. the charge-offs rates, the rates of people that was no longer pay their debts have increased dramatically. at some point they were up to 12%. that has cost the credit card
companies a lot of money, and they're not very happy about it. it has also forced them to restrict the amount of credit they give out, particularly people in more risky situations. host: what amount go into debt or default? guest: in terms of going into the charge-offs for it is clear you not get any money out of the person, that is about 6% or 7%. the amount has increased. that is why there has been a lot of attention to these kinds of programs, because we really are in a time when consumers are realizing that the spending boom they enjoyed in the earlier part of this decade is really coming to an end, and now they're facing the bills and raising the debt they have accumulated in realizing they cannot pay it off. host: the charge-offs percentage has increased during this
economic time, during the last couple of years? guest: definitely. that has been one major reason credit card companies say they have lost money, and also the amount of credit america has outstanding has fallen by $100 billion. host: the next call comes from fort myers, florida. go ahead. caller: i have been on the debt management program for a few months now. i am with part of the united way. they did not reduce my balances, but they took a lot of my interests. it went from 20% down to 1%. i am sitting on a lot of interest. i am very happy with it. you have to close out all of your credit cards. i make one payment to them and they charge me a $30 per month peak. host: are you dealing with a
non-profit? guecaller: i believe it is non- card fit because it is part of the united way. -- non-profit because it is part of the united way. what they do is negotiate with each credit card company and set up payment program or they have less interest. guest: i am so glad he is making progress on his debts. the important thing he said is that he was able to work with a non-profit to negotiate down his interest rate. that is a different type of business. that is typically called debt management. what the debt settlement companies is reduce the amount that as of. there is a very fine line and difficult to understand. they are very different businesses. host: is a different than the
commercials that when you travel with irs -- when you have trouble with irs? guest: the commercials are typically ambiguous and you're not clear what they are offering. frequently felt devildebt settlt companies, and others to advertise on the radio and tv. host: if you go to a debt settlement company, how does that affect your credit rating? guest: the industry would say it could help your credit rating because if you pay off your debt will be in better shape than you were before. one concern that has come up is that during the process, some settlement companies have instructed their consumers not to pay creditors during this process, to wait and save up enough money and make a one-time payment.
that has also cause controversy as well because any time you stop paying your bills, that can hurt your credit score. host: next call is from houston. we will move on to san francisco. go ahead. caller: good morning. i am one of the few people that have made it through the mortgage modification process and i have been in a debt solution process since november 2008. i put $94,000 worth of unsecured debt and to that program. as of now i have paid down to 48,000. guest: that is great. caller: it was expensive. obviously i owed money and wanted to make it right. i am still wondering about that, because some of the lawyer
companies get ahold of the fruit that nobody will negotiate on, and they start suing you. that is where i start running into the problem is i am not equipped to deal with that kind of venue. and i am not a lawyer and do not know how to go in and represent myself. that has presented a bit of a challenge. i have been very happy, with the debt solutions. they have helped me reduce the load almost by half. host: when you say it is unsecured debt. is that mostly credit card debt? caller: i have a successful companies i have been doing for 30 years. there was a local weather company. the sellers were native american. it was all american. i realize as ized they were thrg money at me. i thought we're doing a great
thing. americans, sari, you do not want to buy american. -- sorry, you do not want to buy american. i had to let it go and try to save myself. host: did you consider bankruptcy? how has this affected your credit rating quests calle? caller: -780 is long gone. i am not alone. and they will have to figure out how to scalfigure this out on a bigger scale. i am not alone. host: thank you for sharing your experience. guest: what this caller demonstrates is that the bigger question and the debate over debt settlement, any of the alternative financial firms is a
question of access. many people look at these companies and say should they even exist? why do people have all of the debt? but some people are in a really tough situation, and what other services that will be available to them to help them in their position? what some companies would say is they are in a long continuum of services for people that are in a tough spot. if the companies go away, who will help them? host: the new fcc rules that are in place include they must disclose how long it will take to see some results, how much it will cost consumers, potential negative effects of using debt-relief services, and key information about accounts must be disclosed. linda sherry is on the phone. are you supportive of the new rules? calleguest: i am extremely
supportive of the new rules. my organization has been working in concert with other consumer groups for many years to try to get rules such as this past to protect consumers. host: when it comes to advanced fees, are you opposed to those? guest: yes, they are system in which the companies take their money upfront. based on information from industry association from the industry itself, nearly two- thirds of enrolled consumers who paid in advance dropped out of the programs within the first three years and did not see any benefits from the program. the industry's own figures are joined this kind of thing, and we feel it is a program that does not help family finances, in the rose family finances. -- it erodes family finances.
guest: what would you say to consumers who find themselves in this tough spot? guest: i would say that that debt settlement avenue has not been available to them before the ftc past these rules because it has been a sham and as a paralegal at many consumers. -- fernández not really help that many consumers. -- and does not really help that many consumers. they can go into a credit counseling agency, and they will find they have budgeting services so they can take a look at their overall financial picture and see what is really happening and what is the next step. if necessary, they can then enter a debt management plan with these agencies. the sefees are very low and
usually on a sliding scale relative to income. host: are you satisfied with how the ftc has pursued settlement against debt settlement companies or would you like to see its stronger? guest: i think they have done a great job. i think they really understand that many of the companies are skirting a very fine line between hurting folks and certainly not helping them as the industry claims. there are clear aspects to the mission here, and that they are often used deceptive advertisement. and i think the ftc has recognized this and targeted the industry justifiably so. host: linda sherry, thank you for spending a few minutes with us.
tom in annapolis. ancaller: i started with $30,000 in debt. two years ago i tried debt management. i tried counseling. i eventually settled with every one of my creditors to shut down the accounts, drastically reduced interest rates and that have been plodding along. i am still in a situation where i may have to deal with the pay off. the one thing you have not mentioned is the fact that when you take a debt settlement reduction through one of these companies or negotiated on your own, that reduction in your debt is counted on your taxes, so then you have to pay taxes on that. i have had friends do this, and they did not realize that up front. what about putting this money in escrow when you make your monthly payments instead of -- every time i did this with an
institution, they told me i would not be eligible for the program until i was delinquent. why not put that in an escrow so the company does not get an upfront fee but it is still there when it is time for the consumer to pay down? guest: one thing i want to address first is the tax issue. that is something that has been talk about. and there has been some folks talking about potential legislation around whether you have to pay taxes on any amount of debt you do not pay. that is an open question. the other idea is the idea of an escrow account. when you work with the debt settlement from their required to typically to set up an escrow account under which you deposit money where you save up to pay off creditors. one of the concerns about the escrow accounts is that typically the debt settlement
firm may have access to that account, and may be able to take out their fees before you are able to save up enough money to pay off your creditors. the third-party account has been something that has cost many consumer advocates a restless night sleep. host: new york city, co-head. -- go ahead. caller: in your field, it do you deal with -- there is that freedom tax release. does that fall under the same settlement company that the tax relief company comes from do they all fall under the same regulation? guest: it is hard to know, but
if they're promising to reduce the consumers' debt, reduce the amount of money they owe, they could very easily fall under the same program as well. host: next call talking about debt settlement companies and new rules that are facing. this comes from colorado. caller: i would like to say that i am glad i was able to get through. i just got through working with the debt settlement company. host: what was your experience? caller: one of the things i wanted to mention is that i guess when you're dealing with several credit-card companies, i think they are on their own separate schedule on terms of how they are managing your credit card debt.
i have noticed that some of the companies are starting to send out settlement offers for which you receive four or 57 offers in the mail, which was one of the reasons i got into the debt settlement program. host: did you respond to the debt settlement offers? or did you say no? caller: i was under the impression that that was something that the debt settlement companies would do. host: what has been your experience now that you have been working with the debt settlement companies? caller: well, the company i worked with, the way it were set up is as long as you get money in their accounts, they cannot actually settle until you have
reached a certain amount of money in your account for the call at the credit-card company. guest: this is very standard. this is the third-party escrow accounts. the way that that works is there is a separate account that is set up, and what the debt settlement companies say is you need to save up this amount of money before we can even go to your creditors with a reasonable offer. the question is how difficult is it for consumers to save up that extra amount of money and how much of that money will go towards fees and how much will go to the credit-card company? the other side is while you're sitting at money, frequently credit card companies will not agree to negotiate with you if you pay your bills on time. there is some strange and disincentives to not pay your bills, which is something that can get you into trouble down
the line. a lot of times they're not willing to help you unless you are in trouble. host: have the credit card companies ever spoken publicly about these companies? guest: not that i am aware of, but it will stick to work with customers on an individual basis to at times were bad debt and payments. so that avenue is available to you if you have the financial literacy to negotiate with them. host: the next call comes from tampa. mary republican. caller: i would like to hear your comment on my situation, please. i am not employed and had not been able to find a job to do a debt settlement. i have been offered many settlements, they want big payments within two months.
not having a job, i am actually in foreclosure. wednesday i applied for a temporary job and there were going to hire me for the holiday season, minimum-wage, friday, saturday, sunday, four hours each day, 10 $120 each week. they called me yesterday and said they were not able to high year me because my credit was bad. this is the eighth time where the employer was willing to give me a job and said they cannot hire me because my credit is bad. i have tried to contact my legislators here in the state of florida. i do not know what to do. guest: she is in luck. there is legislation that is out there that i believe is passed. it is about this very issue, about how our credit reports impacting people's abilities to
get jobs and whether an employer is considering that during the hiring process. clearly that has impacted our ability to get a job. that is something that congress has looked at. host: virginia beach, curtis, a democrat. caller: i want to know about local banks, credit unions and if they have credit counseling. and if a bank that you hold a card with, is it a conflict for them to counsel you on your credit debt when they hold a credit card? guest: i would tell you that it is important to call up your creditor when you start to get in trouble. that would be my very first that. and i am obviously not a financial adviser, but i would say that is the first thing you should do is to call up your
credit card company and say i am having a problem, what can we do? that is where i would start before we go down some of the other rows. host: have a lot of the debt settlement companies been born to in the past few years because of the economic crisis we have had? guest: yes. when the association of credit- card companies formed, there were only 300 companies in the space. that has increased to 1000 companies. there has been a lot of growth in recent years. and really as the business began to increase after changes to the bankruptcy law that made it more difficult for people to go into bankruptcy, and then the fed into a crisis added on to that as well. -- and then the financial crisis added on to that as well. host: where are these companies based? guest: we have two large
companies in washington. they are really all over the country. they may have been offering some other type of financial service previously, it may be offering credit counseling, some of the other plants we were talking about, and then added debt settlement to their array of services more recently. host: st. petersburg, jeff. caller: good morning. i would like to find out more information or advice to young people or young family members that find themselves in debt. you have to pay your debt off, at the same time it seems like the banks have a lot of predatory lending practices towards the young people. you try to get them to pay it
off or they will eventually fall so far behind their stuck between a rock and a hard place. guest: that is a very hard question. one of them that is targeting done people as around student credit cards that limited the marketing students that credit card companies could do on college campuses, ltd. the way that credit card companies and college campuses could interact. there are things that are happening on a national scale to help protect some of the most honorable consumers out there. host: ylan mui has been with us talking about the debt settlement companies and new rules regarding the companies. thank you. please come back. please come back.