tv White House Press Secretary Holds Briefing CSPAN October 5, 2021 1:35am-2:07am EDT
a congresswoman. watch book tv's coverage of the twain first annual national book is full sunday at 2:00 eastern on book tv on c-span two. >> next, white house press secretary jen psaki took questions about president biden's agenda priorities. >> increasingly over under this administration, that was then. there was concerned with president biden took office about his business dealings with china, has he invested himself of his stake -- [indiscernible] as of april he had not yet done that. at some point, -- do you have an
update on that, his ears all that. >> i point to his representatives on that. i would say, i think you're referring today to the announcement of the speech by investor tie about save one. i think it is important to note here that this approach differs from the approach of the prior administration and argue. -- it wasn't targeted to address the tedious problems we had. this initial steps will help, they are going to realign our training -- trade policies from the piercy -- from the prc to our priorities. >> the president said during the campaign that now his family would have any business relationships with a foreign group corporation or foreign country. wouldn't it be dead if they let
the american people know if hunter had? sec. psaki: you should talk to his representative. i'm not yelling. you should talk to his representative, that remains is policy. he has been working to one that down. beyond that, talk to his representative. >> dr. fauci has indicated that in the time -- people should be willing to give up personal civil liberties for the greater good. we are also seeing very disturbing images out of australia? -- does president biden support what the australian government is doing in their country? would he consider similar measures in the united states if covid goes up over the winter? sec. psaki: the president has been pursuing his own policies in the united states leading to at least 80% of covid -- of the
population getting at least one shot. we will continue to abide by and conduct her own policies. >> the present acknowledge today [indiscernible] sec. psaki: the president's red lines continue to be that he will not raise taxes for a one making less than $400,000 a year and he wants to give the middle class in this country some breathing room. what he wants to do is have a conversation, hear from everybody on what their top lines are and what their priorities are. these were his initial proposals. a conversation to move the ball forward. that is part of the conversation i will have with progressive
members. >> could you talk about tomorrow's trip to michigan? sec. psaki: tomorrow he will be traveling to michigan, as you well know it was a state that benefits greatly from both the bike partisan -- bipartisan infrastructure plan and the -- michiganders spend 60% of their time commuting. this impacts people across the state every day. many people do not have broadband access. that is something that will help level the playing field for people whether they are in suburban or urban areas. 40% live in child care deserts. there are more details and we are happy to provide more to you, but this is a state that would benefit greatly from the president's pulled and ambitious
agenda. he wants to talk about the components in these bills that will make peoples lives better, even as we are having important conversations about the legislative logistics. >> for international visitors, the administration is looking at the cdc to guide which will be as accepted. right now, the cdc says the guidance can be applied . -- two vaccines that have been listed by the world health organization will there be any change to this guidance? for example, the russian vaccine, will it be expected? sec. psaki: we are going to have an update on our international travel guidelines as we get closer to november. early november it remains the timeline we're focused on. i will leave it to our health experts to outline specifics. >> a couple of weeks ago, after
the last update on those guidelines, canadians can fly from vancouver to seattle but cannot drive across the border. that has had a big impact on border communities across the country. [indiscernible] sec. psaki: it is determined by our public health officials. our objective is to return to overland travel, just like where looking to returning to international travel but we , leave it to them to make that determination. you said that there is -- potentially things that could -- >> reconciliation is a risky way to get this done. you said that there is potentially things that could happen.
democrats control the senate, therefore you have the majority to knock down any amendment they could offer. i am wondering if you could identify what the risk is, particularly in that context of what republicans would say is that they do not want to go down this path, rather than a set time limit. reconciliation would force you to put an actual dollar amount on what the debt ceiling increase would be? sec. psaki: the reason would be a separate reconciliation bill not the same as the reconciliation package that we have been debating and talking about. which by the way, we have been working on for months now. the reconciliation process would mean starting from scratch. why wouldn't it be the preference? for everybody involved.
democrats, republicans, the american public. we have a bill that we could vote up or down to raise the debt limit. it is a much easier, cleaner, less risky process. republicans can still bring up a range of amendments about a range of issues. extending the process they can , be unlimited. that is how the process works. to us, that does not make sense as a preference. we are not ruling out options, the clear, clean, fastest, least risky option is crystal clear to us. >> i wanted to talk about what we touched on earlier. you spoke about efforts to shore up energy in u.s., but there are a couple points. [indiscernible]
some of our closest allies are in line. for fuel or i wonder what we are doing to deal with this crisis internationally. months ago, but in the past week, he would circle back on what message we would convey. we want to accelerate beyond -- a few months ago, a sort of gradual increase in production. sec. psaki: i think one of the questions i was asked was about our national security advisor who meeting with the saudi arabians last week in those meetings, the study of abm meeting was focused on yemen, but he and his team reiterated the imperative of supporting recovery. included in that is the price of oil.
we are in regular touch with opec. i did not mean to convey we were only in touch months ago. we are in regular touch with opec members, since we are not a member, that has been ongoing. >> at the risk of asking another question about the debt ceiling, you have said that you believe enacting the law is the only way. or invoking the 14th amendment not solve the problem. sec. psaki: as was reported, we will look at a range of options. that they wouldn't be accepted by the treasury secretary or by legal restrictions. we note that the only path for here is through congress acting. there is a simple process that can be done in the next few
days, before we hit friday to reduce uncertainty, make sure the on american people don't have to worry about their bank accounts, retirement savings. all republicans need to do is get out of the way, let adults be the -- let the press be the adults in the room and take a bow. last night on 60 minutes, there was investigation into this situation the members of military been in. nine out of 10 of them have had their forgiveness rejected when they applied. the president has the power to solve this problem from the -- for members of the military. will he use that law? is there anything else the initiation can use? what does >> what you are referring to is the public service loan forgiveness program. it is promised to professionals to do hard work. fixing this program has been a priority for this administration from the first day.
that is why in the coming weeks, the department of education plans to announce a major overhaul of the program. through series of executive actions it will for -- restore the opportunity -- for public service and not-for-profit professionals to get a prior payments made on federal loans for their studies counted towards this regardless of the program under which the payments were made. they will have more, but this is something that we want to reform address and make better for the people who should benefit from it. >> with the president saying that he cannot guarantee that the debt ceiling will not be breached, is the white house taking preparation, in the event of that happening? you have outlined that it would be catastrophic. >> is the white house making
plans in preparation for the work? sec. psaki: he also said after he made that statement i cannot imagine that would happen. that is an important context for people to understand. it requires congress acting. that is the one path forward. that is why we are talking about it, why he gave remarks today, why we are pressing forward to get this done. >> is the white house or administration preparing for the worst in case that does not happen? sec. psaki: there isn't another option. it has to pass legislatively. >> can you comment at all on the outage of facebook and instagram today. is the white house aware, looking into that, what is going on? sec. psaki: we are aware, we are monitoring, but i do not have any updates. i would point you to the companies for that. >> avoid potentially triggering markets affecting the american people.
if this is such an economic risk, why give mcconnell any say at all? why let mcconnell off the hook or republicans off the hook, this is their debt, that they chopped up themselves. this is a period of time, where we could easily solve this in the next two days and easily do that through allowing democrats to be the adults in the room despite the fact that republicans spent like trump and sailors over the past four years before president biden took office. it is easy to get done, we did not need to start a long procedural process. we are not ruling out options. we have to get this done. we have to get it done to make sure that people do not worry about their retirement savings or their college savings for their kids. it is easy to get it done and we do not think republicans should be let off the hook. >> you said the president has not yet [indiscernible]
when was the last time that you spoke on the debt limit? sec. psaki: i don't have any read out of a recent call from them. >> [indiscernible] sec. psaki: they have been great vocal, we live it to them on how they want to reach out and engage with members. >> [indiscernible] sec. psaki: we are going to a state and a part of the state they could benefit from these packages. because they are hugely popular. people do not think of the roads as partisan, for good reason, nor do they think their childcare is partisan. that is why the president wants to make the case in michigan. reporter: good faith negotiations require trust. the infrastructure about -- infrastructure vote further --
when you say the president wants to play constructive role in moving this forward, does not also include him building trust within the democratic party? how would you do that? sec. psaki: the way the president sees this, we are in the midst of a legislative process and this is how the process works. less about trust or not trust, that has been thrown out a lot of the past week. the president proud of his proposals. the members of congress argued for their priorities some with , strong emotions. good for them because they're passionate about what these issues are and help these packages could fundamentally change things for people across the country. cursing out this is a recognition of the important moment this is. in his view, this is how the process plays out. there's going to be votes, there's going to be arguments, there's going to be disagreements, thought is democracy. we have seen it work this way, a bump in the road, look at the affordable care act, dodd-frank,
the american rescue plan. these were not smooth legislative processes. they rarely are. we are rarely -- and we are in the minute middle of it. >> why now to go out on the road and do an event like this? sec. psaki: i think the president felt and we all felt that the last week or two what was important was for him to be available. 10 meetings tomorrow to have conversations. he is obviously still doing that. it is also important to remind people, as the sausage making has been the dominant storyline the last few weeks, what this is all about. why he is fighting so hard for. why there is important debates and discussions about what is in these important packages, that is what he will do in michigan. i expect he will do more in the weeks ahead. >> i have two questions on the oil spill. is there a national emergency declaration being prepared? sec. psaki: it would be asked by the governor and granted by fema. i don't have any updates on
that. we are continuing to closely monitoring. we are in close touch with the governor and his team, but i would point you to fema if there is an update. >> is there an effort to stop offshore drilling? how does this underscore that effort [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i think one of the reasons that there are also existing oil leases -- not that it was your question -- that are still ongoing. that has not changed. you referenced ongoing litigation. i think the president has identified addressing the climate crisis is a core priority for him and this administration and taking every step possible to do that remains a priority. i would not say this changes that. that has been the case before this and will be the case even as we work to ensure recovery is complete. go ahead, andrew. >> last week, chairman thompson
said that his committee would be making referrals for criminal contempt in the event trump administration witnesses failed to honor the subpoenas that have been served. in past administrations, these sorts of referrals have not been acted on by the justice department. i know the president has said that the doj will act independently of the white house, but will the biden administration break with recent precedent and actually follow the law in this case? sec. psaki: these witnesses have not failed to appear, so we are not quite there in the process. we would point to the department of justice. there have been cases, i know this wasn't your question but since you asked about january 6, broadly, where we did not exert executive privilege, for example, in the matter of doj officials who have been called to testify before congress, but
obviously issues that are of the purview of the department of justice will remain there and we are not quite at the point where anyone has failed to appear. >> past administrations have not followed the law and acted on these sorts of referrals. whether or not one will happen in the future -- sec. psaki: i understand your question, of course we are going to follow the law, but i'm not going to get into hypotheticals that are not relevant to this current state of play. i would point to the department of justice, but i also wanted to note where we have broken with some recent past president and -- past president and how we approached, just to give you an example. >> need to update on that department of education on whether the president can [indiscernible]
wondering if there was a holdup and what the holdup is. sec. psaki: i don't have any other updates. i would say that obviously lowering the cost of college or relieving student debt is a priority. if congress wants to send us a bill that would relieve $10,000 in student debt, the president would be happy to sign that. there has not been action on that today. -- to date. part of his proposals have been lowering the cost of college, giving more people access to college who would not otherwise have had it, which shows his commitment to the issue. >> [indiscernible] especially migrants fleeing from haiti.
law -- more humane alternatives resist. can i get your reaction to that memo and [indiscernible] sec. psaki: i haven't seen his memo at this point. i'm not sure when it came out. that is fine, please do. we don't see title 42 as an immigration policy. it is a public health authority because we are still in the middle of a pandemic and it is determined by the cdc. it is also true that there are several exceptions for title 42, including those who are fleeing persecution to express a concern of fear. those who have health issues. those are individuals who go through our immigration proceedings and process, so it remains in place because we are in the middle of a pandemic, but i think the short handing of that is not an accurate depiction of what our policy actually is even if it relates to exemptions. >> i have a question on climate change. during his west coast trip, the president called for bold action
on climate change in the response to wildfires and other extreme events. but the climate provisions are also a major sticking point in the reconciliation process between senator manchin and the progressive faction. what is the president telling fellow democrats about climate policy during these talks and is this an area where he is willing to make concessions? sec. psaki: it remains a priority, otherwise he would not have proposed it. there is also very broad support within congress for climate provisions that are in both the reconciliation package, as well as the infrastructure package. that includes historic investments in electric vehicles, electric vehicle charging stations, the replacing of lead pipes. to make sure kids have access to clean drinking water. as you know in the reconciliation package, it helps create a climate corps helps
make sure there is a climate standard, for key pieces for there to be pivotal addressing of the climate crisis. the president would not have proposed it if he did not think it was a priority. go ahead in the middle. >> [indiscernible] do you know if he wants to be president? does he want to play the role of president? [indiscernible] sec. psaki: we don't see it that way. we are in the middle of a process. this is democracy, it is not dysfunction, so we are going to keep at it. >> thank you. if i could go back to that question on inflation, you said the package will help inflation
over the long-term. the new york federal reserve president said he sees elevated inflation for at least another year. what is the timeline you are looking at for the long-term, especially since this reconciliation package could go into effect over the course of 10 years? how long should americans be expected to wait for those prices to come down? sec. psaki: the federal reserve and the oecd and others have said inflation is six acted to come down. they continue to say it is transitory. it is a tenure package, but what is important about the package is that several economists have conveyed it would help address inflation over the long-term, which is something i think is in the interest of the american people, the public, and future governments. >> in the last 24 hours, north korea's press agency say they have reopened the hotline to south korea. what concerns do you have about the proposed -- i don't know if
this is real -- the alleged missile? sec. psaki: we of course support and continue to support inter-korean dialogue and engagement and cooperation and we will continue to work with our r.o.k. partners to that end. as it relates to our engagement -- let me another missile launches -- so i don't miss that , we of course condemn any illicit missile launches. we are consulting closely with our allies as we assess the recent event and determine next steps. as it relates to our own engagement, which i think you were asking about, our goal remains complete denuclearization of the korean peninsula. we are prepared to meet without preconditions. we have made specific proposals. we hope they will respond
positively to our outreach, but at this point we have not had a response. >> it has been reported china sent 52 aircraft into taiwanese airspace. both strong statements from the state department and you don't appear to be listened to in beijing. what next? sec. psaki: we are also in touch privately, conveying clear messages through diplomatic channels, and that is probably the appropriate place for those -- no, the president has not. we have high-level officials who are in touch with a range of officials there. go ahead. >> on the pandora papers. [indiscernible] for instance, a month ago, president biden was discussing issues with the president of the ukraine. now he is reportedly involved [indiscernible] does this undermine trust
between washington and kia have? -- kiev? sec. psaki: let me reiterate, the president's commitment is to bringing additional transparency to the u.s. and international financial systems. it is something he has pressed for in his domestic agenda, but also something that in international forums he has focused on elevating is important to level the playing field, reduce corruption, ensure that we are doing that as a coordinated international body. i would not say it changes. maybe it makes it even more important to be on the international agenda. go ahead in the middle. last one. >> in relation to taiwan, i'm wondering can you say which u.s. officials have been raising concerns privately? sec. psaki: i would point to the state department, the department of defense to give you more detail. >> is there an update on a potential meeting between president biden and president
xi? sec. psaki: no, i just heard my voice, which was a little bit of an out of body experience. [laughter] obviously, there was a significant speech that was given today. part of our objective and our engagement as it relates to our china strategy is to maintain high-level dialogue. i don't have anything to preview for you at this point in terms of a meeting our next conversation, but certainly maintaining high-level dialogue at that level is a priority to this administration. thank you, we will do this again tomorrow. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2021] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]