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tv   Washington Journal Cristina Marcos  CSPAN  March 8, 2021 3:10pm-3:46pm EST

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be in debating 13 bills and gaveled out heedly and now in recess subject to the call of the chair. waiting for members to return. when they do, we will bring you live coverage including congressional gold medals for capitol police who fought the attack of the capitol on january 6. a look at congress now. christina marcos, thank you for joining us. guest: thanks for having me. host: take us back to the senate final action on saturday. what did it change about the $1.9 trillion bill that the house will have to wrestle with this week? guest: there are two major changes that were made in the senate. the first one being the restrictions on the direct stimulus payments, that is a central part of the previous pandemic relief bills.
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rather than the maximum amount that one can qualify for to get a check is still incomes of $75,000 for individual. they used to be people up to 100,000. now that will beat cap to $80,000. a number of moderates were concerned there were some higher income people who were getting these payments when they didn't really need them. so that's one major change we will see. this does mean there are some people who got stimulus checks last year who won't get them. the weekly insurance -- unemployment insurance supplement. additionally in-house bill that passed a couple weeks ago, that
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would've been $400 per week. but now it's going to remain at the status quo of $300 which was another change pursued by moderates in the senate. >> how much work will the democratic leadership, does the speaker have to do and perhaps the white house to get this finally passed we think tomorrow in the house. ? >> guest: we've been seeing some progressives expressing displeasure at the two main changes, the on a plumbing insurance payments and the restrictions checks. i will no longer support this bill. the congressional progressive caucus said they weren't -- they weren't pleased terribly.
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they argue the change made was relatively minimal. they are willing to support this and go forward even if it's not their ideal bill in this case. host: phone numbers on the bottom of the screen. for democrats, 202-748-8000, republicans 202-748-8001. independents, 202-748-8002. we will also take comments to social media. we know the house rules committee plans to meet we think that tomorrow to prepare this final bill for action in the house. we will see what part of the day this bill will come up. who are you watching? we talked about the progressives. who are you watching from this point forward? guest: the progressives, some
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key members to watch our lawmakers like alexandria ocasio-cortez who's been relatively quiet in the last 24 hours. late last week when senate democrats first began the change the stimulus checks like the maximum amount -- maximum income in order to qualify for anything is now down. she tweeted restricting the number of stimulus checks and having fewer checks go out by democrats is an own coal by the party. which is how she complemented -- which is how she commented. whatever signal she gives will be key for how progressives in congress and from the country will perceive the spell. we are also watching centrists as well. is this a victory for them. do they see this going forward for how their approach on this relief bill.
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host: the democratic senator from west virginia making a whole lot of news yesterday into today with some comments about the filibuster. we know this covid bill avoided the filibuster through special procedures but the hell headline says he is firm on support of the filibuster, making it more painful -- but open to make it more painful to use. >> the filibuster should be painful. we have made it more comfortable over the years. maybe it has to be more painful. maybe you have to stand there. things we can talk about. whatever you take away in the senate, the ability for the minority, however it may be to have input, why do you have two senators in a rhode island in two senators new york or california? why is there one body the treats
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everyone hopefully the ability to intervene and be involved, the ability to represent no matter how large or small. so the bigger person doesn't take advantage of the smaller person. that's what this is all about. >> but just to be clear you would consider making it harder to invoke the filibuster so that you don't just automatically have 60 votes that you need for any legislation. >> i would make it harder to get rid of the filibuster. i'm supporting the filibuster. i will continue supported. i think it defines who we are is the senate. but it should be painful if you want to use it. you should make sure the place works to the point where i want to work with you. my republican friends are not my enemies. and my democrats are my colleagues, together we have to make this place work and it should be harder.
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don't make it painful for the other side. host: the future of the filibuster. what you think? >> it sounds like he is a little open as to some reform. non-illuminating it altogether as many progressives are asking, but as he explained there maybe there's a way to make it so rather than just you would need 16 order to overcome the filibuster, right now senators don't have to stand there for hours on end in order to hold up a bill. there may be other ways to do it , essentially put their money where their mouth is so it wouldn't be quite as easy for senators to hold up bills, to physically drain them. >> christina marcos is a congressional reporter. first call for her is james in
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atlanta. caller: thank you. with the democrats need to do is start playing hardball politics. they have an equal rights bill. they need to put this bill with the payraise and anything else they want. joe mansion's estate is full of drugs and addiction he needs for treatment. they need to put these bills altogether so everybody gets what they want. denying people the men wage raise. they are stopping what 99% of america wants. even republicans get the welfare checks, they get the
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unemployment checks. everything the democrats want. this is a bipartisan bill for everyone. if they don't want to work with democrats, they need to be ostracized because they are stopping progress because we put them in office to move this country forward. host: a little bit about the internal dynamics there in the senate on the democratic side. what do you make of that? guest: i think james is sitting on an important point that a lot of progressives are making. as it stands now, the equality act, that's another thing house democrats passed recently and something they also passed in the previous session of congress when mitch mcconnell was the majority leader and republicans controlled the senate. and what happened to that bill, it did not get any action from the senate. republicans did not want to bring it up in the first place.
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now the democrats do control the senate, democrats are warning they could see the same result even though they are in charge of the senate now were house democrats passed all these bills that are top legislative priorities that then go over to the senate but then don't become law. they are doing how can we go back to voters who gave us control of both chambers on the white house and say we control all congress and the white house but we still couldn't get everything done because of the senate rule. that is weighing heavily on democrats right now and starting to move the needle a little bit in the senate where there is talk of changing the filibuster rule because otherwise they do risk effectively seeing the same results as they did while republicans were in control of the senate. host: that caller also managing -- mentioning the minimum wage.
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there's a push for a bipartisan conversation on the minimum wage. what is next for the minimum wage? >> progressives are calling on the white house to present a plan for what they will do next because the white house hasn't said at this point how it plans to get that priority done. there are some republicans in the senate who've expressed openness to raising the minimum wage, not to $15 an hour, but for example is mitt romney in comp -- tom cotton introducing a bill. that would raise the wage to $10 overtime and index it to inflation. so it's higher than the current 7.25 dollars but not as high as 15 the democrats are pushing. congresswoman uriah paul -- jira
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yapal was making the case there are five senate republicans on this bill but she questions whether they can deliver 10 republicans to pass the bill to raise them men wage in the senate. so that's a question of whether there is room for compromise their if it can bring more than five senate republicans on board or if democrats need to limited the filibuster. host: jim is in north carolina, independent caller prayed -- caller. caller: hello. host: you are on the air. caller: good morning. i want to make you comment. when obama was elected any of the house and senate and got involved with a lot of smaller items instead of going for the big push, they need to understand let's get done what's most important first and then the little infighting we have
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going on in the senate and house is to go ahead and solve those other issues down the road. people do not like change. we all feel uncomfortable when something happens in our lives that's not the same. we can take a little bit at the time. let's take a little bit at a time and look at it is what it would do to the smaller business owners and whether or not they could go ahead host: host: with that cost. thank you for calling. before we go back to our guest, let's hear from the white house communications director who is on cnn yesterday talking about the minimum wage. [video clip] >> president biden supports raising them in wage. he believes strongly that is the level at which people in this country who are working full-time can make a living wage
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and not be living in poverty. he believes that's a fundamental matter of values. >> but you don't even have 50 votes for that. >> there currently no active discussions about lowering the threshold. these are details that will get worked out. the senate just passed our american rescue plan, a massive effort to get aid to people who needed across the country. the conversation is going to turn to how we tackle the minimum wage and the president is looking forward to working with congress to determine the best way to do it. the president is committed to raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. host: in what order is this? is the burning priority, will, up soon or is it months away? guest: we don't know at this point prayed -- at this point. white house democrat of signal it would be an infrastructure package.
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that's another thing democrats are eyeing. to pass under the reconciliation process and that would allow them to evade another a public and filibuster on that front. maybe they can try again to push them in wage, but their skepticism that the senate parliamentarian would let it slide this time around when she wouldn't let it happen again in another reconciliation package. there's pressure on the white house to outline the specific plan for how and when they would have the minimum wage legislation go through congress. host: dan from new york, republican call. >> good morning. i listen to all the soft science economic issues and social issues and these are all contingent on how we handle the virus and reality where we are
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now the virus what we know about the virus, three vaccines of dubious certainty at least, they have a lot of things going for them. there are some dubious certainty. since we only have a few months of data, we really have to concentrate now on where we started which was testing. we are not doing the testing, we don't really know the pattern. we don't know or we get all these data on television where they got this data from. is not following any clear-cut rules prayed the consequent to turn out to be we are planning for something that's going to happen and we don't know when it's going to happen. we don't know if it's going to get even worse than it is now. so how about getting back to the key issue directing your entire national attention now which is the characteristics of the virus, the characteristic so the
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vaccines and how long it is estimated for us to get out of this picture. several governors are ready now saying let's all dance together. we are going to fall into a bigger hole again. all these economic plans and congressional stuff going now will be meaningless. host: thanks for calling britain guest: -- for calling. guest: a big part of this relief package is about $70 billion in funding for coronavirus vaccine and distribution efforts. it is true there are limits to federal power. in texas and mississippi they are choosing to forgo mast mandates and allowing businesses to reopen. it is true there are limits even if there are these federal resources, governors or not
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choosing to continue pandemic restrictions and so -- until there is widespread heard immunity it will be more difficult to reach that point of relative pre-pandemic normality. host: we keep using the figure $1.9 trillion, several folks are sending texts and tweets like greg asking why is it still 1.9 with recent changes that should've trimmed the amount of spending? how much have we trimmed off? >> there hasn't been an official cbo report to come out with that, but democrats have been pushing for that figure because they argue it's what necessary to get the economy back on track in the states and localities have resources. the democrats pushing on the stimulus checks insurance
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benefits. host: chuck schumer did say over the weekend it would do it again. guest: it seems congress is most likely send this bill as soon as tomorrow. shirley before the unemployment insurance benefits expire. host: i wanted to read a quote from representative ill han omar . she talks about the senate and told the hill the democratic majority in the senate has to come up with a strategy. you're not in the majority just to sit and do the same republican majority did with all priority bills the democratic majority in the house sent to them. guest: she's making the point democrats now that they have control that they need to deliver on these priorities that they campaigned on.
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otherwise she and the other progressives say they risk being unable to deliver on these things. allowing certain document immigrants citizenship, voting rights, the list is very long. so they worn they don't deliver on these priorities the voters that send them to congress and gave them the white house it will be hard to explain to them next year and in 2024 that photo should keep democrats in power. host: judy is in rochester, new hampshire. caller: thanks for taking my call. the one reason why that bill was not smaller than what it should be is because of all the pork that was in there. although we are building to san francisco and silicon valley,
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they have a lot of money failing out a lot of states because they don't know how to control their budget to their patient plans and other things. i was upset when i found out my senators husband, who has one of the largest lawyer firms in the area and another state got $1.8 million from his firm. i don't think that was right when there's so many small businesses that are suffering. there's so much pork in this bill, of the pork should be taken out, it should only be for the virus, nothing else. when can congress get their act together and do what's right for the public, for the american people? now we have all these illegals coming across that we have to vaccinate them, being spread out to the country so the viruses can start up again and we will start all over. so that's my thoughts. host: christina marcos, your
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reaction. guest: there was a provision that would provide an extension of the bay area rapid transit system, but the senate parliamentarian ordered that provision had to be removed. that was something republicans were touting last week is something the argued was waste will spending and unrelated to the coronavirus relief. that's one provision that is no longer in there. the reason democrats do have that is because some any fewer people are traveling or commuting to work on a regular basis that a lot of these transit industries are really suffering. so the provision in this relief bill is providing support for trains, for amtrak, the airline
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industry to help them get through this pandemic. so there's already mute -- until there's heard immunity and people are more comfortable being in close contact. host: the expander $3000 child tax credit would help 10 million kids living in property -- in poverty. what are the chances for success? guest: the one thing the bill does is raise the child tax credit by thousand -- $1000. and of the $3600 for each kid after. that's another major provision of the bill to help families that are struggling. this is something democrats would like to make permanent eventually. using a big step forward. making that presumably very soon.
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>> adam's in indianapolis on the line for democrats. caller: good morning prayed thank you for excepting my call. my problem with the politics now is these politicians was to work for the people and at this point the american people are suffering, we have these old old politicians who been in office for years who don't want the country to move forward. they need to be out, they need to work for the people. they are not missing a check. the politicians not getting paid and are not out here suffering like we are. maybe they would change their mind. right now it's pathetic, it's sad to see. we got these old politicians the don't want the country to move forward. they need to be gone.
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every last one of them needs to be booted out and get someone in there has been a work for the people. they are not missing a meal or paycheck. host: let's hear from our guest. guest: there are some members of congress who have lived in poverty. kyrsten sinema, who got a lot of flak late last week for voting against an amendment offered by senator sanders up after raise the minimum wage to $15. she brought her thumbs down and to vote against that provision. she actually has a very compelling life story.
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part of it was for a time she and her family lived in the banded gas station. she said there were times that they didn't have running water. so she has that experience. most memos of congress to live -- some of them are very wealthy , some of them are millionaires. a lot of them are working to get this relief to people who need the most. host: silver spring, maryland. good morning prayed caller: thanks for taking my call. if the voting rights act hr one, if that doesn't get elected, they are to find themselves in the minority and they are not in a like that. the truth is with a 50-50 senate we are done for if they don't want to get rid of the
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filibuster. because without passing that with 51 votes -- without passing that with 60 votes to overcome the filibuster, 2022 is going to be a bloodbath because all the redistricting is favoring the republican side because they spent the last decade and a half filling the statehouses with republican legislatures that are going to redraw these lines. host: thanks for calling. before we get a response, i want to show you a short clip from washington journal. kind of like this caller was mentioning these potential outcomes for 2022, a redistricting could affect the midterm elections and future electoral college. here's what he had to say.
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[video clip] >> if you had run the 2020 presidential election under this projection bring electoral votes are also pegged to how many house seats each state gets, then joe biden would've won the presidential election with four fewer electoral votes than he did in the scenario we just saw. not overwhelmingly so, but big gainers. texas and florida are states republicans control in the process. they also control north carolina , a state that's gaining a seat. keeping in mind how narrow the house majority is now. that means republicans would likely only need to gain five seats to win back the house and that narrow margin really makes this a high-stakes process because republicans could conceivably gain all the seats they need to bring the house to
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a tie in texas and florida alone . that's before you get to factors like the larger political environment in 2022 and the candidates the parties recruit. host: any thoughts there? guest: that is a big risk for the house democratic majority as they've outlined there. those are only a handful of seats republicans we need to flip in order to regain the house and it's possible redistricting get them over the margin alone. in the senate where we have them taking out these positions. the reality is it's a very public and state, is to be more democratic but now the entire west virginia house delegation in congress are all republicans.
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there used to be a democratic legacy political family and then he lost reelection. so it's just joe mansion and arguably if he were not to run for reelection, democrats would be pretty hard-pressed to find another democrat who can win statewide in west virginia. he asked also recognize a few years to far-left he could risk losing reelection and so that's just a very delegate dance democrats have. in order to have a majority they have to win states that aren't as left-leaning and so they have to balance between those. host: we have one more call left. i wanted to ask about one more item coming up in congress early this week. they will get a big security review briefing following up on the january 6 attack. >> russell has been leading a
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review in the wake of the january 6 attack. is scheduled to brief house members in sessions today about his findings. some of the things we are hearing ahead of time, recommending more capitol police officer's. that's also something the acting capitol police chief is asked for. in two appearances in recent days. they also argue the need more officers in general. given the threat. also that there prepared for. they have at least some more officers ready to go in the event of an emergency rather than relying on law enforcement.
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host: mike in north carolina. caller: good morning. it amazes me. both parties do this, but democrats really love to do it and that his overreach. i'm going to go back to 1994 when bill clinton in the midterms. the one thing that allowed newt gingrich and the republicans to take back the house majority for the first time in four years was they overreached on guns. i think everyone will agree that was a major part of that. so actually it was a pretty good thing because it led to divided government, it led to a republican congress. i was never a big fan of bill clinton but compared to today he was a pretty reasonable moderate.
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but they passed some balanced budgets, they got some things done and clinton in new tour able to work together. they were able to get some things done. fast-forward to obama with obamacare. i can't remember what the total, i think it still holds the record for the amount of seats lost in the house at the midterms in 2010. we all remember. 53 seats i think the democrats coughed up when they're republicans took over the house. and here we go again. rinse and repeat. they will overreach on guns, they are overreaching on energy. the border is out of control already and we are already only six weeks into this presidency. i don't know whether it will lead to a compromise. i don't know if we are far too partisan to ever go back to a world of president reagan and
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tip o'neill or even bill clinton , it's amazing we look back fondly on how those men and parties work together then. that's my comment. host: final thought from christina marcos. guest: it is true that the democrats to carry the risk of potentially veering to far-left or being seen by voters as overreaching. that has happened in some elections were the party that controls both congress and white house get some big legislative priorities done and then take heat from the other side for it and then the other side wins the midterm election. so democrats are trying to balance that here. that's why centrists are pushing back on the more progressive aspects of the ledge live goals going forward because they warn
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that in order to keep their already thin majority that they need to be careful. at the same time it's a lot harder to achieve bipartisan compromise these days. a lot of democrats especially the wake of january 6 when there were more than 100 republicans in the house who voted to uphold the challenge to the electoral college account. there's a lot of questioning if the other side is actually working in good faith and if they don't have that faith, it would make it very difficult indeed to get very much done on the legislative front with both parties. host: christina marcos,>> "wash" continues. host: looking for your calls. here's what the wall street journal had to say about this. the federal debt is projecting to almost double by

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