tv Speaker Paul Ryan and Leader Mitch Mc Connell Hold News Conference CSPAN January 27, 2017 12:54am-1:16am EST
[chanting] >> they are not going anywhere. their body,, -- their choice! >> my body, my choice! >> house speaker paul ryan and senate majority leader mitch mcconnell spoke to attendees at the republican congressional retreat on thursday morning about the party's legislative and policy agenda for the first 200 days of the trump administration. here's a look. speaker ryan: good morning, everybody. how are you?
well, on behalf of the leader here, i want to congratulate the leader on his sweater. we are bringing argyle back. we are very serious on this. [laughter] speaker ryan: we are actually having a fantastic opportunity right here in philadelphia, where our constitution was inked, where the declaration was signed. we are talking about how we improve people's lives and get our country back on track. house republicans and senate republicans are working on a plan and a bold agenda to get moving and to work with our new administration. we are very excited we're going to be hosting vice president pence, president trump, and we have prime minister may coming as well. we have a lot in store. our members are excited. we have a big, bold agenda that we are working on. that is what we are here in philadelphia to discuss. with that, i turn it over to the majority leader. senator mcconnell: thank you. one of the things that is going to be explored here is the new relationship with the united kingdom, one of our earliest and oldest allies.
with their changes and approach to trade, it opens up the opportunity for the president to discuss with the prime minister, the possibility of a bilateral trade agreement with the british people, interesting new topic. in the senate, as you know, we are concentrating on getting the president's cabinet in place. we will have a busy week in that regard, starting monday. we will also be taking congressional review our actosal -- review proposals from the house and taking those up as well as we begin to change america and go in a different direction. speaker ryan: questions? casey? >> health care -- voter fraud -- are you on the same page? speaker ryan: we are on the same page at the white house. we will be hearing from the president today. we've been working with the administration on a daily basis to map out and plan a very bold
and aggressive agenda to make good on our campaign promises and to fix these problems, to repeal and replace our broken health care system, to reform our tax code system, to get jobs and growth to clear out the , regulatory underbrush so we can get growth going. we are on the same page with the administration. we have worked with the administration on the kind of timetable and legislative agenda we have for 2017. so yes, we are on the same page. ,reporter: [inaudible] how surprised are you every time there is a new tweet from the president? speaker ryan: this is going to be an unconventional president. i think you know this by now, casey. i think we're going to see unconventional activities and i think that is something we are to have to get used to. senator mcconnell: let me just add, for myself i don't tend to , be reacting to daily comments. what the speaker has done, which i entirely concur with and the , administration is on board with, is to lay out a game plan through the august recess of what we want to try to accomplish.
for myself i intend to stick to , a plan and make as much progress as we can. reporter: [indiscernible] the president has demanded that mexico pay for the wall. the mexican president said they will not pay for the wall. donald trump just said the mexican president should cancel the upcoming meeting to mexico if he will not pay for the wall. do you think the president should try to salvage this relationship with mexico? senator mcconnell: i don't have any advice to the president about that issue. we are moving ahead. as the speaker pointed out to our group yesterday, with roughly 12 to $15 billion, we intend to address the issue ourselves. and the president can deal with his relations with other countries on that issue and other issues.
speaker ryan: i think we will be fine. [inaudible] the president's opinion appears to change from day-to-day -- speaker ryan: i would not describe it that way. you will see different emphasis, but with respect to the core agenda that we have laid out for our members, that we are planning and coordinating, we've done this in conjunction with the administration. we ran on these issues all of 2016.
speaker ryan: so there is surprise here. the president agrees with the agenda, not just the issues, but the timeline. so that has not changed. reporter: the president said publicly he does not like it. has he told you specifically? speaker ryan: we are in a good place with tax reform. it can get complicated in the details. once we go through how test reform works and what it will take to get the kind of competitive tax rates, i think most people would agree that this is the right approach. we will work the legislative process through. reporter: [indiscernible] reporter: president trump signaled he wants to look at and may be modified the ban on torture. is this a debate your members want to have and what is your take on the issue? sen. mcconnell: i think the director of the cia has made it clear he will follow the law.
i believe all of our members are comfortable with the state of the law on the issue now. speaker ryan: torture is not legal and we agree with it not being legal. the lady in the glasses. reporter: [indiscernible] speaker ryan: the last part of your question is not policy from the trunk administration, so push that aside. we have a unique relationship with great britain. .e value this relationship the fact the prime minister is meeting with us today is a testament to the fact there is a very important relationship that we value. we believe going forward we can do more things like trade and help us increase each of our two nations. has laid speaker ryan out an aggressive agenda for the next 200 days.
not always senate is on the same timetable. could you address the agenda as played out and what might whether the senate can move at , the speed? sen. mcconnell: the two biggest issues are repealing and replacing obamacare and tax reform. both of those we anticipate having little to no democratic cooperation. so we are working with the house to make sure these measures are reconcilable. and the speaker understands the challenges of getting things through the senate. that has been true for 240 years. but we are aware of those challenges, and we think we can move forward. in addition, we have all of this other responsibilities the house does not have. 1200 presidential appointment subject to congressional confirmation, so we are big in the personnel business on top of other challenges of moving
forward. that is why you can anticipate two reconciliation measures in the first six months. speaker ryan: let me jump on that. we are in complete concert with one another. we in the house respect the fact they have a different rules system and it takes more time and that they have additional responsibilities than we have in the house, as majority leader's said including not just , secretary's judges coming through, low level employees. so our agenda is designed to incorporate that as well. that is something we have walked our members through so that they can appreciate the differences between the house and senate responsibilities. even with all of that, we have a very good agenda and timetable in store. yeah. lotrter: you talked about a of plans and agenda. can you give us one specific deadline that you think congress will be able on any of these issues, and also, can you tell cost of the wall will
be offset? speaker ryan: we do not want to set arbitrary deadlines on things. we want to get things right, we want to get things done the right way. there are statutory deadlines we clearly have to deal with. september 30 is an important statutory deadline. those things will clearly help guide us. the reason we have moved our agenda from a 100 day agenda to a 200 day agenda is to appreciate the last question, which is the senate has to do more things. we are anticipating a supreme court justice and they have to process that. that is why we have moved our agenda basically to filling most of the calendar for 2017, a bold and aggressive agenda, because we feel we have an obligation to make good on the commitments we made in this campaign. we are trying to fix peoples problems in this country. health care is collapsing. we have to fix it. the economy is nowhere near its potential.
that is why regulatory reform and tax reform are necessary. these are the things that people elected us to do and that is why , it will take more than 100 days. we anticipate a supplemental coming from the administration. we will anticipate a supplemental -- like any administration when they come in, to give that to the congress and then we will do that before the current fiscal year expires. reporter: [indiscernible] if you're during health care reform, tax reform, you have a lot on your plate. last year, without all that stuff, you guys did not get the appropriations passed through the house. the senate didn't either, and that was a big goal. will you have time to do the appropriations and what about the debt ceiling deadline? how do you plan to handle that? on theconnell:
appropriations process the , senate democrat last year with president obama in the white house believed it was to their advantage to not have been an appropriations process. if you recall, they prevented us from going to the bill a multiple times and on multiple occasions. i am hopeful that with a different president in the white house, they won't conclude that it is to their damage to prevent some semblance of the appropriations process. non- have a heavy appropriation agenda, as the speaker has laid out. but we hope we will have some semblance of a regular order, even with all of this and get , some appropriation bills through the senate so that we will have something closer to a regular order appropriations process. most members don't like being it completely irrelevant, and when you add the administration, it was particularly absurd in the
previous administration to hand them a blank check. so there were a lot of members who will try to achieve that and it will be challenging. speaker ryan: we budget a lot of times for appropriations. it is on the treasury. so with the treasury, we will find out when they anticipate the penetration of the debt ceiling and that is something we , will deal with in conjunction with the white house at that time. we don't do people shouting out, ok? reporter: [indiscernible] the difference between this president and president obama -- both made a big deal about how -- ress in the legislature it is quite the
opposite. president obama used his pen to exceed his power in our perspective. everything president obama did this new president can undo. , we like to see these things undone and it was like to see the power restored people in state, not the federal government and that is what the , new president is doing. he is restoring the proper balance and he is undoing a lot of damage that was done by the last president who exceeded his power. reporter: this is about the border wall. dealt with a lot , whether environmental lawsuits, private property owners who had issues, how will you guys deal with the same issues that you dealt with back then this time around? speaker ryan: i think if you take a look at the history of the secure fence act, the last administration frustrated the deployment of the fence. this administration is doing the opposite. they are facilitating the deployment of the fence. we agree with this. we voted for this in 2006.
along with 20 of people like her friend chuck schumer, the minority leader in the senate, voted for the secure fence act. now we will actually deploy the fence. and we will anticipate a supplemental coming from the administration shortly on how to finish construction and the funding of the fence. and if there are other barriers in the way, we will deal with those barriers but we think a , lot of the barriers can be done by executive order through the administration, just like last administration frustrated the deployment of the wall. reporter: a two-part question. one, where you offset the cost of the wall? and if so, how? number two, are you saying that by obvious recess you will vote have a tax reform bill enacted into law and an obamacare replacement? speaker ryan: as far as the offset we will wait and see what , the supplemental looks like. i'm not going to get ahead of
policy and a bill that has not been written yet. but the point is we will finance the secure fence act which is , the structure of the physical barrier on the border. we do have ambitious goals and ambitious timelines. our goal is to get these laws done in 2017. we as far get most of these things done by the august recess. but by and large, our goal is that by the end of 2017, we made good on so many of the promises we made to the people and the policies we ran on. again, the reason we are doing this is because their people hurting in this country. the reason we are doing this is because america is not anywhere near its potential. we want faster economic growth. a healthier economy, more wages. we are losing businesses left and right that are being bought by foreign companies are being inverted into foreign companies. we have to fix this so we keep american businesses in america. we also believe comprehensive fundamental tax reform can put american businesses in a better
position. that creates a lot of good jobs. health care, you all know the premiumoubling of increases, deductibles are so high, there three times the rate and size of those in the large group market. five states, only five states have one health care plan. one out of three counties in america only have one health care plan. that is not a choice. that is a monopoly. so we believe on behalf of the american people who are struggling under this law we , have to act. reporter: [indiscernible] sen. mcconnell: remember bill clinton said last year, it is the craziest thing you've ever seen. eight out of 10 americans wanted to want it either repealed entirely or dramatically changed. if hillary clinton was president
and chuck schumer was the majority leader, we would be revisiting obamacare. the status quo is clearly unacceptable. obviously if hillary clinton was president and chuck schumer were majority leader we would be , moving towards a single system but that is not our vision of , how the should be handled. the status quo is completely unsustainable. reporter: can both of you speak specifically overall about your agenda? can you say that the republican party, in the majority now, will not take actions that add to the deficit? at the end of the year, we are not going to have higher deficits from actions that you are taking? whether it be on taxes or obamacare or the infrastructure package? wheneverhe somebody comes in and has the power, it is easier to borrow and there is a lot of pressure. can you make that commitment now that at the end of the year you won't have passed the deficit spending? speaker ryan: we are fiscal
conservatives. what that means is that we believe the government should not live beyond its means. that means washington take less money and we spend less here. that means we have to get our fiscal house in order to prevent a debt crisis in the future. there are two things we can do this year that we think will move us in a great direction on fiscal policy. get health care fixed. the driving force of our coming are out of control health care programs that are collapsing. if we can fix health care and bring more choice and competition so we have better quality, lower costs, and more choices, it will improve our budget situation. then we can get people back to work. if we can get people back in the workforce, it is better for them. we need them in the economy. we need these people working for the sake of them in our communities. and that means we have more people working, more people
paying taxes, faster economic growth. those things right there are some of the best things you can do to improve our fiscal situation to prevent an oncoming debt crisis that we know is coming. we are fiscal conservatives. if we are going to be spending on things like the infrastructure, we will find the fiscal space to pay for that in the spring budget. so those are the things we plan on doing. these are the ideas and principles we ran on. and that is why we laid out for our members a bold and aggressive agenda to make good on these things, because at the end of the day, if we make good on these things we believe we will get the country back on the right check. >> thank you, everybody. we've got to go. >> thank you.
>> house speaker paul ryan will talk to reporters at politico on his plans for working with the white house and plans for congress. you can watch that my that 3:00 p.m. eastern friday on c-span. >> house energy and, chair greg walden and wanes and means brady spokeair greg on plans for repealing the health care law and tax legislation. here is some of what they said. >> what replacement options might be in reconciliation? rep. walden: