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tv   Washington Journal Tia Mitchell Erik Wasson  CSPAN  February 15, 2022 3:07am-4:05am EST

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continues. host: we will look at the week ahead in washington with two veteran reporters. we are joined by tm mitchell, the washington -- tia mitchell, a reporter for the atlanta journal-constitution. and erik wasson. the house is out this week, the senate is in. do you think the president will make the announcement this week of his supreme court choice and what do you think the process looks like in the coming weeks
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on that? guest: i will start. i think that no, i do not think he is ready. kind of going off of comments that came out of the white house and after he met with democrats on thursday. it does look like the president has narrowed done the list of four candidates he's seriously considering and looking into their backgrounds, and perhaps the interviewing process could start this week, perhaps. but i did not think he has set down -- set down with those final candidates. i think it will take at least two more weeks for him to be ready to publicly announce who he is going to nominate. host: once the announcement is made, will it be a shepherded through the committee and a senate floor?
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guest: the senator of new mexico, we saw over the weekend he released a video saying he is recovering from a stroke. it will be a couple more weeks before he can even return to the senate, so that is driving the timeline. if you do not have a functioning majority in the senate, the democrats, unless they can convince republicans, which they are trying to do. they reached out to romney and lindsey graham and others, to trying to get that crucial bipartisan support, but they would like to have lujan back to make sure. so looking at march or april before we see a floor vote. host: tie this into the rest of the president's agenda, what is ahead in the spring. your article you wrote about black voters' approval of biden
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declines, and you wrote about their lack of enthusiasm. what does the president have to get done to get those numbers back up? guest: i think that what black voters would like to see, and that is different from biden can actually do right now, but i think in some of the things that any voter would like to see it are outside of the president's control, such as prices coming down, the cost of gas coming down, but if that happens it will help his approval. if he could get a part of the build back better agenda past, that -- passed, that would help. if some of the infrastructure dollars could start ruling out, or -- rolling out, that would help. and the american rescue plan is still being implemented, even though it is almost a year since it passed, that money is rolling
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, out still but that will also help. host: the present is a speaking on thursday, heading to the midwest to talk about the infrastructure law. correct me if i am wrong, my understanding is that is a basic authorization bill. because the new spending for the year has not been approved, none infrastructure money is rolling out yet. guest: some of it. some of it is going through the appropriations process. the senate has a two-step process. appropriating is where the rubber hits the road. they are trying by march 11 to implement the long-delayed fiscal 2022 spending bill. an if they continue tod get that out, billions still needs to be
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moved. i do not zero brookins trying to -- i do not see republicans tried to block that. but there is talk of giving the pentagon $25 billion, you know, above last year. that republicans want the same further domestic special agencies, it will be higher, they want more than. he. host: you are writing about joe manchin continuing to be a key factor, certainly on the senate side, the headline the white house shifts to get mansion -- g et joe manchin's a vote. he's concerned about inflation. what are you writing about? guest: he continues to cite inflation as one of the main objections of the build back at her plan, the $2 trillion agenda that passed the house in november. the analysis of that shows a
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minor inflationary impact, about .1% over two years. the part with money going to parents is the most dangerous part. so one thing the administration can do is to resell this as an inflation fighting measure. under calculations, it reduces the deficit over 10 years, including irs tax enforcement which has been controversial. but you could keep the tax increases on the wealthy reduced to spending and have up to $1 trillion debt reduction. so that would have an advantage. the democrats in the midterm election. white house aides are weighing it. progressives would not be thrilled with that. you have to cut housing,
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education and so forth out of the agenda in order to make the numbers work. host: we touched on nominations a little bit. tia, you are writing about lisa cook, one of the federal reserve nominees. the headline was fed's nominee in harsh spotlight on the cusp of history. who is lisa cook and for have been the objections to her nomination? guest: she is economist andan -- an economist and and professor at michigan state. she was on the council of advisors during the obama administration. and now she is appointed to become the first black woman on the board of governors for the federal reserve. but they have brought criticism from the right in ways that question her resume, despite all of her accolades. she is a marshall scholar. she studied at oxford in london.
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so, she is -- the criticism has been that she has specialized in economics and the impact of policy on people and their livelihoods and ability to amass wealth, but she does not have enough of a background on monetary policy and control of inflationl. the has been the -- of inflation. there has been what has been against her. but her defenders say you can have people from different expertise because part of the federal reserve's mission is to manage, or at least a factor in how policies made affect wealth for individuals. so it will be interesting. i think there are republicans willing to support her, but as the nomination process continues it's, you know, the criticism has been on the two women
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appointed to the federal reserve, not as much on the men. again, because lisa cook will be the first black woman in there has been discussion on how race and gender play a part in the criticism. host: tia mitchell covers washington for the atlanta journal-constitution. erik wasson covers washington for bloomberg. we are looking ahead to the week ahead in washington. 202-748-8001 is the line for republicans. 202-748-8000 for democrats. for independents and others, 202-748-8002. we are two weeks away from the state of the union, but it seems to me that the president would like some things in the win column in two weeks. what other priorities do you see the president emphasizing in that speech? guest: i think that infrastructure will be big for him because, again, that is his
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latest and biggest win. but i think a lot of what democrats are trying to portray to the american public is that they are trying to respond to the needs of americans, they are trying to address inflation, and have government fill in the gaps that exist, particularly as the covid pandemic endures. and i think that if the numbers continue to decline in the pandemic, you may see the president make comments about turning the corner to living with covid as something that exists in our everyday lives and what that might look like. guest: and i think he would like to have more wins. one that could be available is an agreement on the china competitiveness bill, the money for semi conductor chips, boosting the auto industries in the u.s.
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there is a big difference between the house passed version and senate version, and may that will be dragged into the spring. they would also like agreement on a funding bill. it would be a big boost, talking about potentially a 10% or 30% boost to domestic agencies -- 13% boost to domestic agencies. they would like to have that. this week they will be considering postal service reform. this has been an issue with the post office, the most popular government related agency in the u.s. government, and it has been feeling and having -- failing and having years of loss. this could put it on a sounder footing. so they are trying to wrap up things before the senate heads out. host: before we get to the calls, we will be covering a
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house hearing this week. the house is out this week, but the administration committee will be meeting to hear about the inspector general's report on the january 6 attacks, michael bolton will be testifying for the house administration committee on thursday at 3:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. also on our mobile app. do either of you have any sense of how they january 6 select committee, the timing of potential public hearings and when they will wrap up their work? guest: my colleague covers this and he reported over the weekend that april is the time when they are looking to bring this forward, really focusing on donald trump's election lies and the imaginations heated before the riots, what degree that actually provoked the riots. so we will see that, and potentially getting the
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testimony of mike pence and rudy giuliani. i think they are looking to really do the hearings in the spring and get it wrapped up ahead of the midterm election. host: a key race will be the senate race in georgia with rafael warnock. tia, you wrote about his recent town hall meeting, his first an office event of the year. how do his numbers looking georgia -- look in georgia? guest: our most recent poll shows him in a statistical dead heat with herschel walker, a former football star. but it is early. the good thing for were not -- warnach is his approval rating is higher than the president has. and he is doing better than herschel walker with independent voters. but herschel walker has donald
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trump's endorsement. so it will really depend on how the campaign unfolds after that main primary. herschel walker does not do a lot of in person events for the public, so it will be interesting to see if he starts doing more and answering questions, talking to the media, participating in debates. a more traditional campaign could be tough for herschel walker, he's not used to that spotlight, or as warnock has a year in the senate under his belt and he is a pastor, so doing that is his living. neither candidate is doing much on the campaign side at the moment, so that will be something for people to compare and contrast in a more direct way in the coming months. host: we have calls waiting, so we will go to brian in michigan on the independent line. good morning. caller: can you hear me? host: yes we can.
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caller: herschel walker has been in the big -- too, so it will not be a problem for that man. the main point, i've held top-secret clearance for navy intelligence. after 9/11, people like me, veterans, were calling into this station and urging our government not to enact the patriot act. with durham's report that is coming out, looking at it from friday, and it is like i suspected -- after 9/11 with the patriot act, they pulled it off the shelf and enacted it and i did not respect any major portions of it. when it comes to privacy rights, in the report mr. durham is continuing with it, but he has put it out enough to know that
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it was actually a hoax, guys. guest: there was new revelations about the cia spying on americans, something that is needing looked into by congress. they were not even forming the committees on intelligence, so continuing debate on privacy and security will roll on. host: jim in halifax, pennsylvania, go ahead. caller: i have a concern about one of mr. biden's things he is promoting. i understand he wants to spend $30 million on handing out crack pipes. i would like to hear their opinion on that. host: let me ask you about an
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issue that has come up, has not moved through congress. tia, the -- go ahead. guest: i think we need to be clear that the federal government is not handing out crack pipes, but what people have grabbed ont is the fact -- onto is the fact that there are programs for people who are addicted to drugs, and in the public health space some of the ways you try to lower communicable diseases sounds unorthodox but you actually help people by making sure whatever their addiction is they do it in a clean way. it is controversial but it does happen at the federal, state and local level, and that is what people have latched onto. but to say the federal government is handing out crack pipes is not accurate.
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like everything else, there is debate on both sides on a public health issue. you cannot say, do not facilitate people's illegal drug use, but the public-health experts will say they will use drugs either way so how do we do it as safely as possible to try to lower other types of risk. host: chris on twitter says, "if biden once my respect he will look into serious police reforms ." what is your understanding of where the issue is? guest: it is another thing that has evolved. in the senate, they were trying to work out an agreement and it stalled because democrats want more, especially when it comes to qualified immunity, which is what allows people who hold public office or public positions work for the government that shields them from being sued for conduct
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while on the job. that has prevented a lawsuit from going forward where police officers are accused of wrongdoing in the course of policing. democrats have wanted to curtail that immunity and that has been a divider amongst republicans and has caused police reform discussions to stall. host: those on the republican line -- those who are republican, use the line 202-748-8001. democrats, 202-748-8000. independents, 202-748-8002. from wisconsin on the independent like my go ahead john. -- on the independent line, go ahead john. caller: a question for either guest, looking at the current news and apparent move in the
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ukraine and looking at president biden's decision to withdraw all the staff from the u.s. embassy, just kind of wondering what washington's reaction is to that and as someone who has worked in health for over 45 years and just watching joe biden, i spent most of my year working with people who are 80 plus and, uh, one thing that comes to to mind is is president biden up to the task? i do not mean that with any disrespect, it's just we have not seen him do a lot of public speaking. his state of the union address is coming up, but it has been remarkably late. host: erik wasson, do you want
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to pick up on his comments about ukraine? guest: it is an evolving matter. they have tried to come together in the senate with a sanctions bill which would have tough sanctions on russia, potentially implementing the banking system and their access to international finance. the president already has flexibility under existing law, so this would be more of a statement. and there has been an ability with the nordstrom -- with the nord stream 2 pipeline and how we can constrain russia in europe. so they have been trying to get sanctions together in the last couple days. we may or may not see that with the house out. the timeliness of that is leaving things in question. it will be up for every voter to
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judge, when it comes to president biden. we know he has a speech impediment, do not know how that is factoring and, but it will be up to the voters to decide. host: a caller from pittsburgh on the democrats line. caller: i have a question. we are going to have a drug war. and has been 70 years trying to fight this. what is your take on legalizing drugs across the board? because we have been fighting this drug war for 70 years, it's cost of $700 billion fighting it, and we have not won the war or eradicated the problem. they need to get their heads out
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of the sand and legalize drugs, because the things that happen when we had an alcohol ban and stuff -- my take is we need to legalize drugs and we'll resolve the problem. both of you, do you have a comment about this? i will take your answer on the air. host: david in california, do you have a response? guest: chuck schumer, the senate majority leader, sent a letter out in recent days talking about a bill on cannabis. we have seen the house five times pass the state's banking act which would give cannabis sellers access to the financial system, basically tolerating recreational use. but these businesses have to be all caps right now, essentially -- cash right now, essentially, leaving them vulnerable to robbery.
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but this has recently been put into the house. mitch mcconnell has signaled he wants it out. there's also an issue on the left, where they want to see a government pass legalization and take care of jail offenses. there is ingredients for a compromise here. there are eight republicans in the state banking act, which could go along with sentence reduction. i'm not hearing a move to legalize other drugs, including opioids. in fact, there is a push to put fentanyl as a controlled substance. so we can see cannabis going towards legalization but not so much others. host: me asking about -- let me ask about another issue coming up in the house, the stock act. a headline says there is finally momentum to stop training in congress -- trading in congress.
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what is the issue? guest: members of congress can buy and sell shares in companies that they regularly, quite frankly. leno congress has control over so many aspects of our day-to-day lives, so any type of stock trading in an individual company will likely touch on some industry or sector of the economy that congress we know that became an issue last year during the coronavirus pandemic when we saw members of congress buying and selling shares in companies that stood to do very well during the pandemic as our working and home lives shifted or selling off companies that weren't doing so well because of those shifts. senator ossoff defeated david perdue and david perdue's stock trading was a factor in that race. now senator ossoff, his proposal
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to not only require members of congress to stop trading stocks but has very stiff financial penalties if they're found in violation. it would also preclude a spouse, which is something that house speaker pelosi has faced criticism for because her husband is an agentive stock trader. -- active stock trader. what has shifted recently is pelosi has expressed an openness to one of these policies before she would say, you know, even a few weeks ago she said this is a free country. we are a free market and members of congress should be able to participate in the stock market like everyone else. but now she said, if my members want it, let's find something. if that's what the will of the body is, we will go forward. i think that gave the green light to more discussions. now the question is again ossoff has a bill but so do many other members of congress, so which is the bill that moves forward?
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host: let's hear from james in south dakota, republican line. caller: yeah, how you doing? thanks for having me. i just had something to ask about economically. so the biden administration and democrats control congress, probably $8 trillion, we don't see anything from it. i would like to know that ok, pelosi, you brought up pelosi. she can spend $15 on a pint of ice cream and not care about the normal citizen. what about the trillions of dollars being spent? what do you think is going to happen to our u.s. economy because of it? because all the prices abroad are coming across higher and higher any way you look at it. i would like to see what you have to say on that.
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thank you very much. host: ok, erik waason, do you want to start first? guest: we are seeing a lively debate about the inflationary respects. a trillion dollars going up in one year, front loaded. directly increasing demand at a time when supplies were constrained. we are seeing bottlenecks at the port. if you look at your own life, many people are not travel, going to the movies. they're buying stuff online and that really was contributing to inflation. as far as the infrastructure bill, the other $500 million, that's considered by many economists to be a long term investment. we are going to see that rolled out as far as vivment in -- investment in bridges, tunnels, over the neck decade because it's spread out and morin of an investment, not necessarily really seeing it having an inflationary effect. we also saw the child tax
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credit. this was a real anti-poverty measure, reduced child poverty, but it led people to spend that money directly, whether it's diapers or food, perhaps contributing to inflation. so we are seeing that federal spigot turned off now. there is no stimulus despite erroneous reports i continue to see on 0line, no talk of another stimulus check going forward but it's really hard for the administration and congress to rein in inflation. it will be up to the fed. we are looking at owe -- potentially a 50 basis point in march. it's really in their court right now. it's going to be a very tough calculation. host: tia mitchell, any thoughts on that caller arys comments? guest: one of the things i think about when someone says i don't see the government spending affecting me, that's all relative because you can't step outside without, you know,
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driving on a roadway that was paid for with federal dollars. when you go to the hospital, most hospitals are subsidized with federal funding whether it's medicaid, medicare or you know, uncompensated care, funding that hospitals receive and our schools and if you are an older person, you might be on medicare or social security yourself. so there is a lot of government spending even without these one-off bills like an american rescue bills or even build back better, government spending is built into our everyday lives. but it's always a question of how much is too much and how little is too little? again that spending does affect things like how much we pay for everyday goods because, you know, as erik mentioned, the child tax credit checks and the stimulus checks could contribute to inflation. so it all plays out together, but are we going to say you know, stop government spending?
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well, there is a lot of government spending that people really enjoy and wouldn't want to do without. host: you mentioned one-off bills. i have heard about -- she said should democrats start passing one item bills before the 2022 elections when republicans vote against such things as paid child tax, make the family value republicans answer, why they don't vote for family values. single items, both sides approve, no deals. is that a potential strategy for democrats in the spring? guest: that's been talked about, bernie sanders and others. i think the leadership, pelosi and others, have said let's try to make a law. there is still runway here to actually -- whether it's a bipartisan deal on things like the annual spending bill or a democrats only deal, special budget process on a build back better, whatever you want to name it. they still want to try to build it. as we get closer to the election
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you can bring up these things and have republicans vote them down, block them, go to the voters and say see who the problem is. they really at the end of the day aren't designed to necessarily produce legislation so much as to win the election. host: let's hear from jerry in new jersey, democrats line. caller: good morning. as a registered democrat, i am looking at russia and ukraine, the situation. how much should we be concerned that the media, you guys included, c-span is is not talking about the durham report that came ut that shows that the hillary clinton campaign spied, spied on an american president in the white house. nobody is talking about it. i notice fox is. nobody else. you guys ain't bringing this up. host: we read that story earlier and had a question about it earlier in this segment as well. we will hear from david in
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michigan, dls line. good morning. -- lms line. good morning. caller: good morning. john f. kennedy said ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country. i was just a baby when he said that and i am not a baby anymore. i spent the last -- i spent my life kind of dedicating myself to that, and i look up and what do i see? i see the urban core, our cocoon in a catacomb of critical social policy to ruin their minds, put drugs and guns in their hands, and up until recently incarcerate them. now let me ask you two -- and i
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can only start with you but the three of you really, why is the interlocutor immune from this question and that is when can we expect journalists to do journalism? we have a situation where the truckers have to do the journalism because the journalists are sitting on their ass taking -- host: we will let you go there, david. we will go to georgia, more is on the independent line. hello there. caller: good morning, america. i have one question. why are you -- the report conducted in 1972, came back saying that -- it should not be criminalized. they had to prove again because
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nixon wanted the -- so many people had marijuana. they would lock you up. host: we will let you go there. we talked about that. erik waason spoppedded -- responded to a question about that. bruce is on the republican line. go ahead. caller: yes, energy costs are way up. weren't these caused by the administration's policies for these reasons? we cut off the keystone pipeline. we discouraged shale gas and shale oil exploration. there is even talk of the fed discouraging investment in fossil fuels, that had nothing to do with internet purchases while people stayed home on the pandemic what is your thought on that topic? host: ok, tia mitchell or erik waason? guest: i think the higher fuel costs are mainly a supply chain
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issue and a demand issue. some of the other things the caller mentioned are things that existed even before or they existed as fuel costs thruk twaited -- fluk twailted. guest: it's a lifely debate. republicans have been not forthcoming with what they will do when they take over congress. they're fighting to put investment in fossil fuels. it's a lively debate. on the left, we see a lot of concern about climate change. in their view gas price redux duction, as far as democrat plans to deal with fuel, we have seen mark kelly talking with a gas tax holiday. that's only a couple cents on the dollar as far as 15 cents or
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so reduction that people may not notice. the public is very sensitive to gas prices. a lot of economists say because those numbers are literally on billboards in every community. maybe even more than food or other things you might knots on -- notice on your grocery bill. host: with the house out, we know both bodies have been briefed by the administration a week or so ago on the conflict in ukraine. are we expecting further hearings by the senate or house armed services committees? guest: i think there will be continued briefings. we saw this warning, dire warning, from the white house that russia could invade before the end of the olympics on february 20, so we could see within days this kind of major action. this morning the foreign minister was urminging putin to engage in diplomacy. that was being leaked to sort of
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signal that they want to back off but we will see. this is a touch and go situation. host: our numbers are 202-748-8001 for republicans. 202-748-8000 for democrats. and for all others, 202-748-8002. you can also send us a text. that's 202-748-8003. ow request go guests -- our guests are erik waason, congressional correspondent with bloomberg, and tia mitchell, who is a washington correspondent for the "atlanta journal-constitution." realistically to both of you, we are here in mid february and the election is still well off. does the administration, the democratic leaders on the hill, think they have time to get done what they need to get done on their democratic agenda? guest: yes, i think they do. i think they're looking to repkage the -- repackage the build back better bill. and pass it this spring. i've heard some talk on the hill
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of august recess which has traditionally been a deadline. that would probably be the drop dead of get this thing into long. the fall is very tough in election year and doing anything controversial including our tax increases in the biden agenda and our people not going to be happy about that, especially millionaires and donors. i think they still have a window but they realize the clock is ticking. if history is a guide, they're very much vulnerable to losing the house and possibly the senate. host: tia mitchell? guest: i agree. democrats will try to get as much as they can get done and even last week we saw some movement. we have talked about postal service reform and violence against women and even the long-term spending plan. so i think they're going to try to get done as much as they can and then as we have talked about may do some messaging bills when
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all else fails but they're going to keep trying up until that august recess. host: let me play you the comments of house speaker nancy pelosi. we have asked about the nation's rising crime rate. here is what she had to say. [video clip] >> rising crime. appear to be some divisions among democrats how to handle it. your colleague trying to increase the police force in l.a. cory bush from missouri is saying it's time to di fund -- defund the police. you are the speaker. how do you think democrats should address rising crime? speaker pelosi dn that is not the position of the democratic party. community safety, to protect and defend in every way, is our oath of office. i have -- we are all concerned about mistreatment of people and
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that's why karen bass had the justice and policing act and we would hope to get some of that done, whether it's no knock or chokehold, some of those issues even if we can't get it all done. but make no mistake. community safety is our responsibility and i quote one of my colleagues from new york, a brand-new member of congress, way on the left, saying that defund the police is dead. that causes a concern with a few in our caucus, but public safety is our responsibility and i support what karen bass is doing and mayor adams of new york. host: erik waason and tia mitchell, the speaker saying defund the police is not the position of the democratic party, sounds like she's trying to get ahead of political comrgses on that issue. guest: i think that number one defund the police has never been
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the position of the democratic party. it's been the position of some progressives in the party but i wouldn't even say progressives have a consistent message on this. it's interesting just last week, representative cory bush had a meeting with journalists. i asked her directly about how to balance the need to address rising crime in cities versus concerns with progressives about police and policing. what she said to me last week was it's two separate issues. you want the reform. you want to make sure that dollars for policing is maximized. so to her and to a lot of people when they say defund the police, they're not saying get rid of all police forces. some people are abolitionists but some people are saying use that money in the best way to address the issues that are contributing to crime. so instead of sending a police officer maybe you are sending a social worker or a mental health
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team. so that's a lot of the nuance in the conversations about defund the police that sometimes gets lost in the messaging. that's i think what there are still on going conversations in so many different models but frankly in a lot of cities the police budgets have not been cut. they've only increased and there are still crime issues. host: further thoughts? guest: there are nuance positions but i think most people believe that the slogan defund the police was terrible, political malpractice, bad messaging in a lot of swing districts. it just sounds crazy, we are going to abolish the police and have chaos. they need to find a new slogan. pelosi is trying to edge them that way. there are nuance and interesting ideas about social work, how to deal with some of these root causes of carjackings, juvenile
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delinquency. how do you deal with these kids and get them on the right path? host: let's go to scott on the democrats line in maryland. caller: hi. so my question is about the stock act. i don't really think it's necessary because like if most or many members of congress are already millionaires and it's financially prudent to invest in stock index funds like the nasdaq or s&p, why do they invest in individual stocks? i understand that a lot of people are criticizing them for having big gains recently, but any idiot could have big gains in they're investing in big tech stocks. so i mean if you look at like the bigger track record, like beyond the last three years or so, you can see that any index like the nasdaq 100 easily outperforms any member of
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congress. nobody is is doing better. if you outlaw what they're doing, they won't learn their lesson that it's a dumb thing to do. they might be having gains, but their gains would be better if they invested in indexes, especially the nasdaq 100. host: all right, scott. to be clear, this is an update to the stock act that was passed back in 2015. either of you two want to respond? guest: they have to do disclosure now but people are trying to beat the indexes and the concern i think for government ethics specialists is that they're using inside information or actually looking to influence laws in order to ben knit their individual stock -- benefit their individual stock portfolio. the caller's argument could be in favor of allowing people to be in a broadways -- broad based index funds but not pick winners and losers in specific industries and stocks.
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that could be where we are heading. guest: way add that there have been studies that show when you compare members of congress and their portfolios to average americans, they tend to do a little better. so again that's erik's point. the concern is not that members of congress don't is have risks involved like anyone else trading but are they a little bit insulated from the risk or making more educated trades because of the knowledge they have as members of congress and if so is that something that should be curtailed as a matter of fairness and ethics? host: let's hear from hugh, morristown, new jersey on the republican line. caller: yes, hello. i have a comment. i would like to remind people that last time inflation was this bad that -- in the early 1970's, president nixon instituted a price and wage
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freeze, and overnight the -- it worked. it worked fantastically. immediately the price increased. host: you are kind of breaking up there, hugh. either of you, is there any talk of that sort of plan? guest: there is no talk of price and wage control. the fed is still historically low interest rates. they have a lot of room to raise those. the ball is in the fed's court. we are not seeing talk in either party wage and price controls. host: another call from new jersey. liz on the democrats line there. caller: good morning. i am calling about when and if we fully get rid of this covid pandemic, since the united states suffered the most loss of life and millions and millions
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of cases of people who got infected and survived it, is there any talk of having a panel or task force to look over why we were so ill prepared for this pandemic? and of course some of this was brought on by the public ourselves by refusing to vaccinate, but i think we need to study why we were the first in the world for deaths and most of these dits were -- deaths were sort of discounted because they were 65 and older individuals. i am in one of the baby boomer groups. i think there is a large degree of ageism that has been out and about throughout this pandemic, where we are not really attempting to save lives,
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compared to western european countries. they save far more lives than we did. our death rate is far higher. is congress going to investigate at least to find out why we did such a poor job? host: all right, liz. tia mitchell, any thoughts on that? guest: a lot of points in what the caller said. number one we know that the coronavirus pandemic swipt a-- swept across the globe and -- but i think it will be studied both from a public health perspective, eventually will congress perhaps have some -- there is -- there are congressional committees looking at various aspects of the pandemic and its response even today. but that will endure for years as lessons learned moving forward because we know that pandemics happen and so we will want to be better prepared next time. but one of the issues in america
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in particular is because we are a federation of states and we have 50 states that all respond to the pandemic in different ways as well as the president at the beginning of the pandemic had his own vision for how he wanted to respond to coronavirus and all those things will be picked apart by historians, political scientists and public health experts for years to come. but there are a lot of lessons learned as we come upon perhaps a million deaths in america alone and america does surpass other industrialized nations in the level of coronavirus related deaths. host: just to lit our -- let our viewers know, in a couple of minutes we will be talking to the former surgeon general of the united states, jerome adams. steve is next in pennsylvania, republican line. caller: good morning. i have a question for both of your guests. you know, i am a republican. i supported trump in his win in
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2016. i would not support him again because of all that's happened since then, but when you look at the situation of what we have right now, with inflation, with prices going up, with crime, would it have been any better or any worse if trump would have been re-elected? agree that his way of messaging to people was terrible but his message worked. we had less crime. we had lower prices. and we seem to have less racial problems with him than we have now without him. that's my question. host: steve, we will hear from our guests. erik waason, if you would like to respond. guest: the president was talking about stimulus payment around $2,000 if he was re-elected. he spoke of that in the
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campaign. we probably could have seen him -- we don't know how the senate would have turned out and the republican presidency administration so if that was going through, it's hard to say whether inflation would have been any lower under trump. the policy would have been similar as far as stimulus, perhaps if he had a republican congress he could have done more on the gas and oil. as far as the other comments, i think it's very much an opinion about race relations and so forth. we saw a lot of the george floyd and other issues under trump, you know, it's hard for me to comment on that. host: tia mitchell? guest: crime started to rise in 2020 when trurp was still dush trump was still president. so that's another concern raised by the caller that it's unclear if things would be different under president trump. my question would be, what did trump leave on the table? what vision did he outline to
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address these issues that he was working toward before he left office? and in a lot of the issues raised, crime, race relations, i don't really remember a particular trump agenda that he had outlined before leaving office. host: all right. to ken in cincinnati on the republican line, sorry about your loss last night there, ken. go ahead with your comment. caller: that's ok, the bengals i am still proud of them. my question dealt with the ka neighed track -- canadian truck protests and this spreading to america. could this not have been easily solved by president trudeau changing the vaccination policy from mandatory to voluntary because i think this thing has been escalated way out of proportion. host: that bridge has opened up. both of you, will there be fallout, further protests like that? do you see that here in the united states? guest: i think in canada at least the vaccine mandates are
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popular. it is a democratic government. you can ask whether the majority has the right to decide questions or mandate things like that, but schools have had mandates for meeseles, mumps and other things for years and they weren't controversial until this current pandemic. yes, co-have backed down but it looks like the police are moving in now and sort of clearing it. could it happen here? sure, but i think having -- police would be prepared to not let our industry or government be taken hostage. host: tia mitchell, some final thoughts on that or anything else? guest: i agree with what erik said. in canada, the truckers didn't necessarily reflect public opinion and do we expect additional protests over vaccine mandates? of course, absolutely, because they are very controversial and politicized in america, but it goes back to a lot of what we
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said today. as we near one million coronavirus deaths in america, what is our vision for moving forward during this pandemic and with this virus that's not going away? the vaccine play a part in trying to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. host: tia mitchell covers washington for the "atlanta journal-constitution" and erik waason covers congress for bloomberg. thanks to both of you for
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