tv U.S. Senate CSPAN April 15, 2013 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT
a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from california. mrs. boxer: i ask that the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. morning business is closed. under the previous order, the senate will proceed to executive session to consider the following nomination which the clerk will report. the clerk: nomination, the judiciary, beverly reid o'connell of california to be united states district judge for the central district of california. the presiding officer: under the previous order, there will be 30 minutes for debate equally divided in the usual form. mrs. boxer: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from california. mrs. boxer: mr. president, in the midst of another tragic occurrence in our country where we are all holding our breath to
learn the facts and praying, i wanted to say that the business of the senate is moving forward in terms of judges and how important it is to have judges in place so that criminals can be prosecuted and justice is served. and tonight in front of the senate is judge beverly reid o'connell to be district court judge for the central district court of california judge reid o'connell was approved in the judiciary committee by a voice vote. she has had a very diverse legal career. i want to say that she served as an exemplary superior court judge in los angeles. she will be an excellent addition to the federal bench. she is a lifelong southern californian. she grew up in northridge where she was valedictorian of her high school.
she went on to attend ucla and pepperdine law school where she was managing editor of the law review, and she graduated magna cum laude. she began her career in private practice, spending five years as an associate at morris and foster. in 1995, she joined the department of justice as an assistant u.s. attorney where she spent ten years gaining critical criminal law and trial experience. judge o'connell excelled. she was the deputy chief of the general crime section responsible for supervisorring all the attorneys in the criminal division. she was the lead attorney on a case at that led to the indictment of the highest ranking member of a major drug trafficking organization on u.s. soil. and for her work she was awarded the d.e.a. administrator's award for exceptional service. she's received numerous other awards from the d.e.a., the f.b.i., and local governments. she was appointed superior court
judge in los angeles by then-governor arnold swartzen nagger in 2005 and judge o'connell is the assistant supervising judge where she's responsible for supervising three courthouses and 22 bench officers. she's an expert in criminal law. she presides over all aspects of friendly criminal cases before the superior court. and in addition to being well-respected for her demeanor on the bench and her stellar intellect, she's known by her colleagues as a great manager and supervisor, attributes which will serve her well at the busy central district. judge reid o'connell is very active in the southern california legal community. she create add program that brings inner city students to the superior court to educate them about the legal process and to spend time with judges. she teaches continuing education courses to california judges on
criminal law. she is an adjunct professor at the law schools of pepper dye dine and -- pepperdine and loyola. she received the a.b.a.'s highest rating unanimously, saying she's well-qualified and will make an excellent federal judge. while we are in the midst of some very contentious debates and i hope and pray we will move forward with a background check amendment that was crafted by our colleagues, senator manchin and senator toomey, while we are worried about everything that's happening in the country, particularly what's happened today at the boston marathon, i know we are going to move forward tonight because we need to make sure that we have qualified judges on the benches to deal with crimes, to deal with justice every single day, and i really believe that judge reid o'connell is a wonderful choice for these very difficult
times. and i urge my colleagues to support her nomination, and i yield the floor. mr. president, before i do yield the floor, i wanted to just say for the note of anyone who's been following, that on monday nights i usually speak about climate change. i am not going to do that tonight. i am going to put that off until next week. i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
mr. reid: mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the call of the quorum be terminated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: mr. president, i like every member of the senate am shocked and saddened by the news from boston today. of explosions near the finish line at the boston marathon. my thoughts go out to all those who were injured, and my condolences go to the families and friends of those affected by
this tragedy. i commend the first responders, observers who rushed toward danger, to help those who were hurt. who continue -- we continue to monitor the news from boston. president obama has spoken to a number of people including the mayor of boston, governor duval prick and -- duval practice and pledged every resource possible to bring to justice the perpendicular freight tax raters. he'll be speaking in about 0 minutes, he meaning president obama, to the nation. i'll do whatever i can to are support the people of boston and the commonwealth of massachusetts as we all will, all will during this difficult time. mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that all time be yielded back on the nomination and following a moment of silence for the tragic events that took place in boston earlier today, the senate then proceed to vote on the confirmation of the nomination. the presiding officer: is there
objection? without objection, so ordered. the senate will observe a moment of silence. silence silence silence [moment of silence] the presiding officer: the question is on the nomination. mr. reid: ask for the yeas and nays. the presiding officer: is there a sufficient second? there appears to be. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
the presiding officer: are there any senators wishing to vote or to change their vote? if not, the yeas are 92. the nays are zero. and the nomination is confirmed. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from alaska. a senator: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak for up to ten minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. begich: i understand there are two bills at the desk and i ask for the first reading en bloc. the presiding officer: the clerk will read the titles of the bill for the first time en
bloc. the clerk: s. 729, a bill to protect law-abiding citizens by preventing criminals from obtaining tpraoeurpls. s. 730, a bill to prevent criminals from obtaining firearms through straw purchasing and trafficking. mr. begich: i ask for a second reading and object to my own request and all en bloc. the presiding officer: objection having been heard, the bills will receive their second readings on the next legislative day. mr. begich: i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today it adjourn until 10:00 a.m. on tuesday, april 16, 2013, that following the prayer and pledge and the morning hour deemed expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date and the time for the two leaders be reserved for use later in the day. following leader remarks, the senate be in a period of morning business for one hour with senators permitted to speak therein for up to ten minutes each with the time equally divided and controlled between the two leaders or their designees, that the majority control the first half and the republicans controlling the final hafplt -- half.
following morning business the senate resume gun safety legislation. the senate recess from 12:30 p.m. until 2:15 p.m. to allow the weekly caucus meeting. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. begich: if there is no further business to come before the senate, i ask it adjourn under the previous order. the presiding officer: the senate stands adjourned until senate stands adjourned until
>> certainly general petraeus thought that his private communications were going to remain private. we all should have that reasonable expectation that when we are communicating with one person, we are not communicating with the government. and we are not laying out our whole life to the government. we should have that privacy. >> we want a government to be trustworthy but we don't want to say to the american people trust the government. and thatcher defense. as we see new problems we should pass laws to protect people's
privacy and their fourth amendment rights rather than say the government hasn't abuse those yet, why are you concerned? or, the courts may come in and save the day. okay, they might but while we're here why don't we make sure that the law catches up with the fourth amendment. >> does the government need a warrant to read your e-mails? tonight on "the communicators" at 8 p.m. eastern on c-span2. >> orphaned at age 11 she lived with her favorite uncle, james buchanan. years later he becomes president and because he is unmarried, she serves as white house hostess. she's the first to be called first lady on a regular basis and is so popular that she sets trends in clothing, and children and ships are named after. we will look at her life and that of her predecessor, jane pierce, along with your questions and comments by phone, facebook and twitter. first ladies tonight at nine eastern on c-span and c-span3, also and c-span rated and c-span
dot radio. >> the president for americans for tax reform grover norquist was joined by house majority leader eric cantor and other republicans during a text a press conference on friday. this is 15 minutes. >> thank you everyone for coming today. this is our annual americans for tax reform tax date did press conference. my name is ryan, i'm director at americans for tax reform. before turning it over to grover i wanted to briefly go to the handouts that you have on your seats for our c-span audience and others that may be watching this that are not live here today. you can find all of these handouts on a website which is www.atr.org. we have a handout on 100 years of the income tax. this is the 100th anniversary of the income tax in its modern
forms we have a handy chart comparing with the income tax look like when it was first out of 100 years ago and how much it is grown today. we have the top 10 tax hikes in president obama's budget. he released his budget this week. it's a trillion dollar net tax increase relative to current law over the next 10 years. we have broken out the top 10 worst tax increases in the. we have a break on just the energy package. tax increases that are in this obama budget, so we have that. we have top five worst obamacare taxes that are coming online this year in 2013. so people haven't seen this in the tax filings so far, you will definitely see it next spring. you already paying it right now whether you know it or not. so to have that picture of the of a full list of all of the obamacare tax increases. there are 20 new or higher taxes in obamacare. and, finally, we have a map of who controls what in terms of state legislatures and governors
and all that, so unified public -- republican control, democratic control, or split. so with that, i'll turn it over to grover norquist, president of americans for tax reform. again you can find all these at www.atr.org. >> thank you. you cannot change the world without handouts. i wanted to make sure everyone had that. great information either here in the room or online at atr.org. this is the 100th tax a press conference. some of us were here at the first one, but in 1913 some idiot thought this would be a good idea. and when it first for the income tax in, the top rate was 7%. they went from a low of one up to seven. today of course the lowest rate is 10%. and to get into the 7% bracket back when i first thought of this income tax you had to be making in today's dollars $11 million, put you at 7% today
for a lot less you can be paying a 10% marginal tax rate. .. and the democrats in the senate have a budget with one-half trillion dollars increase over the next decade and the president, obama, has one minute trillion, not only are we being hit over the next ten years, starting now with a massive set of tax increases, we are threatened with new ones. today we will hear from a number of congressional leaders who
have been taking the leap in trying to stop these tax increases and begin the process of britney is back. we have now house majority leader eric cantor. >> good morning. three days officially before tax state. i think this brings us to the tables around the country where families are sitting down finally having to sign the return. many are having to write the check. having spent entirely too much time in preparation and entirely too much money, resources being spent, i think it brings on the point that finally now is the time for tax reform. and i have met several members of the ways and means committee that are here that believe strongly working with german camp that we do have an
opportunity this year to reform the tax code, to make it simpler and more fair for our working families. as the judge said, the realization that the president has proposed his budget finally. yet much has not changed. he continues to call for more tax burdens on those families sitting around those kids and tables. we in the house as republicans disagree that we ought to take more out of the pockets and checking accounts of the people who are in the money. washington just imposed a steep tax icon working families. earlier this year. it's time for us now to do something for them, not just take their money. so i commend the efforts of americans for tax reform and look for to working toward that goal. thank you. many people around the country are trying to hurry to get there
tax returns and by april 15th. i would point out, the president ran overtime, legal time by two months to put his budget in. democrats in the senate ran over about four years in presenting their budget. if you cannot get to it by april april 15th, just concluded. it's okay. i wanted it to you sometimes in two months or four years from now on we will call it even. if i could call congressman kevin brady from texas from the house ways and means committee. >> thank you very much. america's tax cut is broken. now is the time to fix it. his tax cut is unfair to families, riddled with loopholes , complicated, and it is a drag on america's economy. committed on the ways and means committee and house republicans to fix this broken tax cut this year. our challenge is to create up pro-growth tax code that
jump-start the economy and encourages families and individuals to work smarter the ability of america to finally compete again on a global marketplace. so tax reform, fixing this tax cut is all about growth and it's all about opportunity. my challenge to the president, you say you want a close loopholes, sikas been more money. we say we should close loopholes so that we can lower tax rates for families and businesses. come to the table. we may disagree, but come to the table now and stay at the table with us in the house until we can fix this broken tax cut and let's commit to do it right now. thank you. >> we have some breaking news, last night and this morning. i want ask the digital liberty
to talk about the irs and your e-mails as you think about sending an e-mail to day and pay your taxes of the next several days. >> so i wanted to bring your attention to a disturbing revelation about the practices of the internal revenue service. not only are they bruising your income, but they may be reading your e-mail. the aclu has recently discovered that if you should in that the target of an irs investigation, their policy is to check your e-mail without knowledge. according to the intelligence document, irs claims that a just not need a warrant to read people's e-mails, text messages command of the private documents, simply because their stores with a third-party service provider. our digital coalition partner american civil liberties union exposed those. under the electronic and acacias
privacy act of 1986 government officials on the need a subpoena, meaning a judge has never seen the request, to redeem notes that have been opened or are more than 180 days old. the only e-mail i have under 180 days old bat is unopened is banned, so that is a more requirements for your spam, but not your personal e-mails these "-- stored in jail for couple of years. the time restraints, the irs thinks it can reach agreement. the aclu found that the irs maintains a belief that the fourth amendment does not apply to e-mails because internet users to not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in such communications. in response, the chairman in a pointed letter to the irs may have said that they don't target people's e-mails or social networking permission, but that does not mean they're not reading your e-mails command does not solve the philosophical
problem that the virus does not believe american citizens have fourth amendment rights online. the year 2013 all-american internet users believe that they have a right to privacy for their digital documents, he knows, clouds storage, and they're social networking information that is marked as private. digital fourth coalition is a partnership with the aclu, americans for tax reform, center for democracy. we are fighting to give fourth amendment rights recognized by all government agents. >> thank you. we are now joined by congressman devon nunez from california also with the ways and means committee. >> thank you, grover. thank you for continuing to fight this battle. i want to say that today and this year we will bring in over two and a half trillion, more money, more revenue than this government has ever brought in in its history. my guess is it may be higher than that. this is under the old tax scheme.
and so when you listen to all of the government calculators, cbo, a joint tax committee, all fine and good people. right now as you look at their budgeting, they are saying that tax revenue will continue to grow. i argue that we stand here year from now we will actually have less revenue than we brought in this year. why? because a lot of people at the end of the year, word about what the tax system would look like and paid a lot of taxes are the. i think we should all be concerned about this because it does not matter at this point how much revenue we raise our how many taxes we raise. i don't think without economic growth that we can never get to the three and a half trillion dollars of revenue to get this budget into balance. we should all be concerned about that as americans. so as we look for work on tax reform, be will have to have broad and comprehensive tax reform if we ever want to raise enough money to actually fully fund the government which doesn't mean higher taxes.
it actually will mean lower taxes. so thank you for all the great work that you're doing. >> thank you. as we look at this to my mention that income-tax started a tax on only the very rich and became a tax on almost every american, this is what politicians call trickle-down taxation. they start by targeting 155 people with the alternative minimum tax and then hit 4 million, perhaps 30 million. they did the same thing with the funding of the spanish-american war, only the truly rich who had long distance phone calls and 1898 were paying. very soon every american was pain long after that war had ceased to continue. and we now have a president who promised that he would never tax anyone who earned less than $250,000. that lasted 16 days into his first term. he raised taxes on people who smoke cigarettes, not all of whom are most of them in more
than $250,000 per year. his promise only to tax rich people lasted 16 days into the administration. he is now repeating now with another tax increase on americans to use tobacco products with another tax increase targeted at middle-income americans. we're now joined by congressman pete / him. >> if you are working a production line at a facility in carol stream illinois, which i just visit earlier this week, you understand or you come to understand the impact on taxes, on your ability to improve in your marketplace, to improve the wages that you are gaining and to improve opportunities all around you. has been stated already today that we have one of the least competitive tax jurisdictions in the whole world. the u.s. used to be at the head of the pack. by doing nothing of the past 30 years in actually fallen behind. here is what we need to do. look out over the marketplace in
the united states and avoid those jurisdictions that have failed. i come from a state that has failed. the state of illinois fell into the trap in a big fiscal drama of raising taxes and proposing the dow was going to be the remedy. here's what happened. taxes went up. the underlying spending problems were not dealt with, and now illinois has a higher than average unemployment rate. the second amount per capita debt of any state in the union. san billion dollars in unpaid bills to my current bills after the new revenue came in. a credit rating that has been downgraded and on and on and on. and that is in stark contrast to other states around illinois that have had more dynamic and awful tax policies, high your view of taxpayers, and are in a much better fiscal situation. we don't have to look into tax theory to find out what works. lower tax rates and a simpler tax code are remedies for
prosperity. >> illinois and california and minnesota and maryland and massachusetts and new york are examples of what not to do. no one's life as a complete waste. some people serve as bad examples. some states do the same. politicians have one of two choices, reform government or raise taxes in order not to reform government. sadly at the state level a number of states, california, illinois, decided they would rather raise taxes and reform their state government. other states are deciding to reform government rather than to raise taxes. we are now joined by congressman kevin brady though, i'm sorry. if i could ask chairman of the republican study. >> thank you for your lead and
the fight against higher taxes. as we can see, yet again by the submission of this budget which was 65 days later, president obama has an unquenchable appetite to raise taxes city can grow the size of government. if you look at the budget the house passed, not only do we balance in ten years, but we do it by calling for a pro-growth tax reform that actually create jobs and it's our economy moving again without raising taxes. then when you look at the senate budget, the president's budget, they raised taxes by more than a trillion dollars and never get to balance. it shows you the choice of two different approaches. we have been calling for a pro-growth tax reform that lowers overall rates so that we can finally get our economy moving again and create jobs that have been proven to work every time it's tried, and i am very encouraged that the chairman and his full committee is committed to moving on tax reform that actually gets our economy moving again. if you look at what the president has been doing on taxes, he love siding behind
straw man and calling for taxes on millionaires and billionaires . you read the details and it hits hard-working middle-class families in the get. obamacare alone, 20 new taxes, most of which hit middle-class families. just last week the president was on billionaires' role in san francisco, raising more money from his friends when the president parties with billionaires' and rock stars at the white house he denies that same right to hard-working taxpayers and school groups. so what we will be filing again monday is the buffett rule. what that does, it's a bill will be filing in the house at noon, the companion bill in the senate. the house pass this bill overwhelmingly last year. and this as a people like warren buffett really feel they're not paying enough in taxes, put your money where your mouth is and there will be a check up box on your irs form to send in as much money as you want, but it will be used to cry the size of the bloated government but to pay
down the national debt. we will see if anybody wants to put their money where their mouth is. so that rule will be filed on monday. thanks again for your lead. >> and we should all read the earlier writings when he was starting to become a wealthy man on the importance of marginal tax rates when you invest. seems to have forgotten that in later years, but he used to read about it quite extensively, and he was right at the time. we are joined by congressman read gribble from the great state of wisconsin. >> good morning, everybody. it has been interesting for me as a former businessman to come here to congress two years ago and listen to the talk about taxes and tax code and you hear colleagues on the left saying, well, the problem is the rich don't pay their fair share. the problem is, corporations don't pay their fair share and the people on our side say, well, that's not the problem. the fact that this 47 percent or
50 percent of american people don't pay any income tax of all. no one to know, there are only partial truths. the real problem, this is the problem. this is the irs tax code. it is filled with some much complexity and fiscal year 2008, the irs received more than 160 million phone calls trying to get answers from tax preparers and citizens about how to do there taxes. there were only able to answer 53% of the. ladies and gentlemen, this is the problem. we can talk about raising taxes, lowering taxes. at the end of the date the product at the government provides is just that, a product, service. a price that the american people pay are the taxes. it is interesting. my colleagues on the left say we need to raise the price. yet the first thing general motors did is simplify the sale. then made it simple. 0% interest in a 0 percent down,
simplified the sale and then reduced the price. what that did is it brought in revenue said that the manufacturing business to say, these are economic principles that are so simple that every single american understands. anybody who has ever walked into a shopping mall gets it. for some reason policy writers here in washington don't. i think grover for the work that you have done and i hope that we can continue to work for real tax reform so that the american people don't have to deal with this anymore. >> the reason why the irs gets all those phone calls, not safe to send an e-mails. [laughter] we're now joined by congresswoman virginia functional carolina. >> well, the good thing about being the last this you don't have a lot to say because everything has been said, and it
is hard to repeat it all. i wanted to point out, i was going to say in some of my comments, the tax code is four times more than our bible. and if you look at it, not only is this implausible in terms of the size of it, but look at the fine print. it is impossible almost to read. so not only is this huge in terms of numbers of pages, but the print is fine. so it elias the real has to of what we're dealing with your. something that has been very little mention has been the amount of time that people have to spend working on their taxes. as a majority leader mentioned, the weekend before tax day on monday. i am sure all of you know lots and lots of people who are
spending this weekend working on filling out there taxes, gathering up their receipts. a minimum of 13 hours is what the average person spends on trying to comply with the tax cut. and 60 percent of us find it so onerous that we cannot even do it ourselves and we hire someone else to do it. so think of what you could do with those 13 hours. you could drive to disney world from here. you could have a really good time, spent time with your kids, spend time with your family. most of us find our time extraordinarily precious. i know i do. i don't want to have to spend my time worrying about filling a my taxes. another point, americans and not spending more on taxes than on food, clothing, and housing all put together. what a sham. what an indictment of a society
when that is the case. that should not be. it absolutely should not be. we should be working to lighten the burden, and we are. the republicans are doing everything we can to lighten the burden off. again, one of my colleague said economic growth, it's foundational. and until we revise the tax code , until we have a simpler, more fair tax code we are simply not going to see the economic growth that we need. tax -- our tax cuts should not require taxpayers to own a secret decoder ring to figure out how to do there taxes.
>> not the last speaker. travis brown is joining with us, the author of how many walks, how to trillion dollars moves between the states and allied matters. we tend to think about federal taxes and estate taxes matter a great deal as well. somebody has steady this and help lead the fight in changing its state-by-state. travis brown. >> thanks, grover. if you want to look at the path forward on national tax reform, start by looking at leaders right now within the state. in the first time in a long time we have got something intelligible from the internal revenue service that shows exactly how taxpayers like you this weekend, are moving between and among and across the states. so we're talking about with how money walks, the availability to
track over the previous 15 years , exactly what tax policies at the state level have been popular, measured by real responses from those moving their homes and their pocketbooks to states, generally what we find across all 50 states is that taxpayers are fleeing a high tax states and flocking to the low tax states. why would that be the case? well, the price to work at the state level is variable compared to the price of work that we put and impose on our federal tax code as just mentioned, being fixed. that means it's no surprise that when you look at the nine states in america that have not had a personal income tax, there price for work is up to of over 13 percent thanks to california, lower than the price of work elsewhere. so you have, in aggregate,
$146 billion being, adjusted gross income to those nine states without a personal income tax, and the reverse is also true. nine states with the highest personal income tax rate or per-capita income tax burden collectively lost over $100 billion between 1995 and 2010. there is no reason to guess and wonder what should go -- what principles and programs should go into our national tax reform system. you can turn to the state and see the results of the state revenue growth, growth of state product, and exactly on how our taxpayers are moving, migrating away from california, new york, and illinois and moving to places like texas, tennessee, and florida. finally, there is a reason and all of this information now available at the county, city, and state level.
go look at the irs in u.s. census bureau analysis. finally there is a reason to continue to remind us in the state that we should turn to our governors who celebrate independence day and that the anniversary of our national income tax. >> thank you very much. to your point on state tax, very important. there are some real differences among the 50 or 57 states. in those states that are deciding not to reform but raise taxes again, california, minnesota, illinois, maryland, d.c. @booktv sorry, well, d.c. as well. to massachusetts, things are dramatically different than in those states such as louisiana where the governor is looking to abolish state income tax in working with the state legislature there. kansas' which is also working to phase out its state income tax,
north carolina under the leaders from the state legislature. the state senate, moving to abolish the state income tax business and individual income taxes in those three states. we are seeing governors pushing for cuts to the income tax in wisconsin, michigan, indiana, ohio, and a number of other states. a very dramatic differences. in d.c. they talk about gridlock trying to go in opposite direction. in the states because so many have united democratic or republican control, the states are actually passing legislation and a number of states, higher and higher taxes. looking to abolish the state income tax. we are going to be a will to see them. what works? did people move from illinois and indiana? from indiana and illinois? what happens? so with that we take a questionnaire to.
additional fonts. we have had great presentations from our congress type people. yes. >> cpi was the big issue. the chairman. how you support the idea. >> a very good question. cpi is the idea have two changes. one is, it reduces the benefits that people would have when they retire. social security. reduce the benefits so that they would not grow as rapidly because they are indexed to inflation using an inflation rate, cost-of-living rate that is lower. it reduces spending. about $100 billion over a decade. the other half of it, which is why you get different people objecting to changed cpi for different reasons, the other part of change cpi is it brings back what we thought we had gotten rid of under reagan which
was jimmy carter's record. back in the 70's when the government inflated the currency and everybody was getting higher wages because you were getting paid more dollars that were worth less. you're not getting any better off, but you're pay went up to% in '78, '79, '80 each year. pearwood go up 10 percent, inflation. making the same amount money purchasing. the government said, you are now in a higher tax bracket. that is what bracket creep is, the idea that inflation will push you into a higher tax bracket. look how rich i am. well, not because you get a pay increase. so what changes cpi does is reduce the growth of some benefits in social security and brings back partial bracket creep. i think that bracket creep was a particularly pernicious way for the government to raise money because the government and let
the currency, you didn't do that. some third party did, and they printed more money coming into the currency, with a were responsible for pushing you into a higher tax bracket when you were not any better off than you were the year or two years or five years before, and then they take a bigger percentage of your income because they're treating u.s. if your rich people because the money is worth less. so that is why some people look and say we are against it because it is a benefit that and some people look at it and say, we are against it because it is a sneaky way of raising taxes. my concern is changed cpi is what this administration has chosen to throw out like marbles that everybody speak to ignore the fact that for four years they had no recommendations written down, serious recommendations to reform entitlements. in the republican house has now three times past the ryan budget. the ryan budget gives
significant savings by reforming entitlement, not getting it, by reforming them, as clinton signed the legislation with the republican house and senate in 96 to block grant. and when he did that, ended up saving money. child poverty fell. we ended up with 50 states taking different approaches on how to be helpful on welfare. less dependency and more people and needed help getting help and your people who did not need other people's tax money getting that. that reform was very helpful and is central to the entitlement reforms that the republican house has passed. with the president has not done is actually put together a budget as well thought out as ryan's. certainly not the save the same amount of money. but the ryan budget has put forward, you can balance the budget without raising taxes. the ryan budget does that. republican house has voted for a budget that balances over the next ten years, balances, now reduces the growth of debt, over
ten years without a single tax increase. the president's budget and the democratic senate but is it raises taxes dramatically and never balances out into the history of the world forward tens of thousands of years out. never balances. so we have entitlement reform. it has been voted on and passed by one body. the president tossed this out knowing that no democrat in the house or senate will vote for it and hoping the republicans would say something nice about a tax increase inside it. i think it is an and serious effort that the president really wanted intel and reform he would go to the democratic senate and say, come up with something that i can sign and you can pass. then you can talk to the republican house and say, we have an entitlement reform. how about you? when you have a vote on this in the senate, as we have the last couple of years on the president's budget, close to zero democrats will vote for it. it's not serious.
[inaudible question] >> to parts that don't have to be attached. one is a reduction in the growth of spending. that is not the way out would reform entitlements. i think the republican approach to reforming entitlements rather than just snipping at them is a better proposal. what i would suggest is that -- and change the cpi, because it is $100 million tax increase at least over a decade and grows in out years, unless it was matched by at tak tap in similar or larger size, it would be a tax increase. the present house is not ready for a tax increase. any bill for a budget which has entered talks about a tax increase. ..
>> how do we expect to compete in the world at 35? that's not sustainable. but the real danger and what the president's talking about is do you really want to take gm and fortune 500 companies from 35 to 25 and leave every small business in the country at 44? because personal income taxes, a lot of american companies are what is called a subchapter s. most smaller businesses, mom and pop shops, professionals, play personal income taxes as if they
were a company. so you take away from them the deductions and credits that the corporate guys were trading away from lower rates, and they don't get lower rates. so this can be done in a way that really damages small and independent businesses by keeping their i rates higher than international averages and higher than larger corporations, and while the corporations have some of their deductions and credits taken away, it's replaced by lower rates, and then the independent small business men and women, have fewer deductions and credits and higher rates than they have had in the past. so, you can get into the weeds on this. it can be very, very damaging for small businesses. i think it's unlikely that you could do a corporate only tax reform because so many american businesses are independent businesses that pay personal income taxes. you kind of have to do both at
the same time. or if you don't you have to recognize if you take away deductions and credits on the individual side and leaving the rates up, it's not revenue neutral overall. yes? >> you would not be supportive of just doing a corporate tax reform that is revenue neutral? it has to be comprehensive that includes individual side as well? >> as long as the whole legislation was revenue neutral. you can make it revenue neutral on the corporate side and it's not revenue neutral on the individual side because of what you do to subchapter s companies? so if it's revenue neutral it would be fine for people who made pledges to the voters, 219 members of the house, saying i'm not razor taxes net. tax reform is fine and consistent with the commitments to voters. think there's a challenge of corporate only.
not impossible but can be difficult and have to make sure you're not disadvantaging smaller companies by making them wait on tax reform. >> shift gears a little bit. [inaudible] >> obama wants to have the platform for tax issue so he can help elect more democrats -- [inaudible] >> i think a smart elected official would go an -- assume it could be either. so, talk to him and check out and see if he is on the up and up on the budget stuff, and in which case, yes, but be aware that might not be the case, and should be careful about that as well. you don't want to walk down a conversation that starts with tax increases that can grow and
grow and grow, and dominate the conversation. the argument that the president can't be bent to the will of the american people, though, is counterfactual. i spent most of 2011 and part of 2012 being told by all the smart people in the world there was no way to get a 2-1/2 trillion reduction over the next decade on spending. it had to be part tax increase, part spending reduction in order to get the deficit reduction commitment that was demanded by the republicans in the house for the increase in the debt ceiling. at the end of the day, we got 2-1/2 trillion in spending restraints. the caps and the sequester, have been repeated efforts by democrats in the senate and the white house to try and undo that agreement of august 2011, but it's held. the sequester is holding.
despite the historianics of not having easter egg hunts or not letting kids go through the white house, not letting the blue angels fly. they do that and looks silly, the boy who cried wolf. and at the end of the day we taxpayers won the fight, and those who believed in d.c., you had to raise taxes, in order to get any spending restraint, were wrong. we got suspending restraint without the tax increases. obama -- president obama is again saying'll never let you cut the budget unless you give me more tax increases. he said that the last three years and has lost several times on that fight. so does he want to have spending retrain or spitelement reform? -- restraint or entitlement reform? i don't think so. just look backwards. his first two years a democratic senate and we homecoming up every morning, could have
reformed entitlements and all day he didn't and went to bed and did that 700 days in a row. and if somebody could do something for 700 didays like diet or quit smoking, you can say i don't think they're serious about losing weight or these things they might talk about, like entitlement reform because they say they're going to. this is mark twain roz observation. he was, skin tackle about playing the harp in heaven. some people want to reform entitlements after their dead but not now. [inaudible] >> i think the republicans should continue to put forward what they did do, which is the legislation they passed in the
ryan budget, which is dramatic reductions in spending by reforming government. doesn't chop things up. doesn't say tomorrow it's got to be 10% less than yesterday. it reforms government to become less expensive, which it clinton did with welfare reform. [inaudible] >> you keep asking nicely, and if the white house is serious about reforming entitlements, maybe it could happen. it may be the sort of thing that has to happen after you elect a different senate, and maybe the kind of thing that has to happen after you elect a different president. there's no reason not to presume good bill and say, if you're serious about coming and working with is on the ryan budget, we can do that but if you want us to walk into the room where the price of admission is to raise
taxes on the american people, that's not a worthwhile effort. a number of republicans have been tricked into walking into that room in the past. they manfully walked out and said, you were trying to take me, this will not happen, and we avoided that in '11 and '12 but when you walked into the room, all the democrats wanted was tax increased. there will no spending cuts on the table inside those rooms. i talked to the guys who were there what did you talk about? in '12, the supercommittee? kerry, now the secretary of state, wanted 1.6 trillion in tax increases to handle the 1.2 trillion deficit reduction and spend 400 billion on new spending. that was the deal they were offering. it was reported at, they're talking about cutting spending and raising taxes. no. that never was what they were doing. but i'd peek into the room. i wouldn't walk into the room, bought everytime people have walked into the room, somebody tried to take them. and again, people have fallen
for this. '82 and '90 and. reagan got taken and bush got taken. good, smart, dedicated people were fooled. my promises i'll hold the football for you, charlie brown, and they do it. yes? >> referred repeatedly the president got -- your analysis seems to be there was no tax hike, there was only spending cuts. how does that square? >> looking at what people actually voted for. certainly taxes went up because we had the bush 2001 tax cut lapsed and were extended a couple of timed and then lapsed again january 1, this year. the bush 2003 tax cuts were extended but lapsed january 1st of this year. the amt patch, which was extended six times, over and over again, every two years. it extends for two years and then going to lapse.
so on january 1st, just a few months ago, three major tax cuts all automatically disappeared. didn't take a vote. matter of fact the republicans in the house at least twice, maybe three times, voted to extend all of those tax cuts permanently. so they were on robert. -- they were on record but unless the senate did the same thing, wasn't going to health nothing any congressman or woman could do to protect the lapsing tax cuts. so on the first of january, this year, there was a $500 billion tax increase for 2013. largest tax increase in the history of western civilization. then in the next day they voted to pare that back 85%, and what happened and why we're in a completely different world than five months ago or a year ago is instead of having temporary tax cuts that disappears every two years, we now have a permanent
collection of tack cuts, 85 publication of the amt and the bush tax cuts, and because they're permanent, the power is gone. what the president -- the mistake he made was heed a all the power in the world in november and december, everybody comments, the president can do anything he wants. the run republics can't make him do anything. human being only get an extension of the amount of tax cuts he was willing to dribble out, and he took 15% off the table and made 85% permanent. and he thought he won the fight because he had a mandate or was popular or virtues or persuasive. he won that because he had this great big tax increase and nobody else had that, and then he gave it e. then we went to the sequester and he says, everybody has to do what i want. and opponents says, no, we don't. ey wi did last time. last time you had in is n your hand and now you don't have it anymore.
so he could have spent the last four years of his presidency in control of this city because he could threaten every year to bring the tax cuts back at any level he wanted to. he made it good for the country. in the sequester, the republicans wanted less spending had all the power because there was an automatic $1.2 trillion spending cut unless somebody did something different. and the president kept suggesting different things, mostly involving tax increases, and opponents said, no, and the sequester is in. so now the president has given away the power he had because of the tax increases and doesn't have that anymore, and now you're back to arguing on equal level in a country where the american people thing they're overtaxed, the government spends too much and they move to and from based on how heavily they're tacked.
so that's how that played out and why taxes were increased, nobody voted for it, which was very awkward for people who felt very uncomfortable being in congress when taxes went up and all they could do is vote know. the good news is we're no longer skating on the wrong side of the ice or in the odd position of alice in wonderland. everything is right. you can only raise taxes if the house and senate vote for a tax increase and the president signs, and for the fact four years that isn't going to happen. thanks, guys. good luck filling out your taxes. >> two bombs explode at the finish like of the boston marathon. killing two and injuring more than 100, at cnn and others are reporting one of those killed may have been an eight-year-old. the chair of the senate intelligence committee dianne feinstein says there was no intelligence on the attacks. president obama has been getting
updates from the fbi the department of homeland security and held a short briefing at the white house earlier today. >> good afternoon, everybody. earlier today i was briefed by me homeland security team on the events in boston. we're continuing to monitor and respond to the situation as it unfolds. and i've directed the full resources of the federal government to help state and local authorities protect our people, increase security around the united states as necessary, and investigate what happened. the american people will say a prayer for boston tonight. and michelle and i send our deepest thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims in the wake of this senseless loss. we don't yet have all the answers. but we do know that multiple people have been wounded. some gravely. in explosions at the boston marathon. i've spoken to fbi director
mueller, and secretary of homeland security napolitano and they're mobilizing the appropriate resources to investigate and respond. on a day like this there are no republicans and democrats, we're americans, united in concern for our fellow citizens. i've also spoken with governor patrick and mayor menino to make it clear they have every federal resource available to care for the victims and counsel the families, and i made clear to them all americans stand with the people of boston. boston police, firefighters, and first responders, as well as the national guard, responded heroically and continue to do so as we speak. it's a remind sore many americans serve and sacrifice on our behalf every single day without regard to their own safety in dangerous and difficult circumstances, and we salute all those who assisted in responding so quickly and
professionally to this tragedy. we still do not know who did this or why. and people shouldn't jump to conclusions before we have all the facts. but make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this. and we will find out who did this. we'll find out why they did this. any response -- any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice. today is a holiday in massachusetts. patriots day. it's a day that celebrates the free and fiercely independent spirit that this great american city of boston has reflected from the easterliest days of our nation, and it's a day that draws the world to boston streets in a spirit of friendly competition. boston is a tough and resilient town, so are its people. i'm supremely confident that
>> certainly general petraeus thought his private communications were going to remain private. we all should have that reasonable expectation that when we're communicating with one person, we're not communicating with the government. and we're not laying out our whole life to the government. we should have that privacy. >> we want a government to be trustworthy but we don't want to say to the american people, trust the government, and that's your defense against being abused. and as we see new problems, you should pass laws to protect people's privacy and their fourth amendment rights rather than say, well, the government hasn't abused those yes. why are you concerned? or the courts may come in and save the day. okay. they might, but while we're here, why don't we make sure the
>> now a look at president obama's 2014 budget proposal. one includes a change in the way the government calculates the cost of living adjustment for social security. this is 40 minutes. >> adam green is our guest, cofounder of the progressive change campaign committee. thank you for being here. tell us what your group is about. >> guest: the progressive change campaign committee is a bold progressive.org is a national grassroots organization, about a
million members and electoral work, supporting people, and it's advocacy work. if you work deeply with campaigns, earn their trust, build an arm y, then we have these great partners once the new washington, dc and can work legislation around economic issues like healthcare reform, and social security. >> host: we saw president obama unveil his 2014 budget last week. here's a story from politico. looks at your response on the obama budget. a trio of groups is washing democratic lawmakes if they could face challenge from the left in the next election but it's unclear how serious the threat it, what is your response to the president's budget and how do you want to see members of congress come down? >> guest: may be unclear to politico, it's clear to us.
can't call yourself a democrat and support cuts for social security benefits. we're cutting into the core of the democratic and progressive legacies and we can't be for cutting social secure benefits. that's why democracy for america, moveon.org, and others, are making very clear from the start that it is democrats in congress support the president's plan to cut social security benefits we'll actively seek to recruit, fund, and support candidates and we have asked our members, would you be willing to step up and rub -- run for office. and over 1500 people among our members have said yes. over 700 in democratic districts. business owners. state legislators, school board members.
so we will get into the recruiting business, hopefully against tea party candidates, because nothings more core than social security. >> host: there is a danger in luigs seats held by democrats right now? if you run a more liberal democrat, are you concerned about losing seats that democrats now hold? >> guest: no. we're not. the reason is that we never asked people to take positions that are outside of their district and we're living in such a weird time that politicians in d.c. just aren't there on issues that are popular back home. so nothing, not a single thing more popular back home than social security. i we had a democrat willing to cut social security benefits they would we more prone to lose, and if we had a strong person, like rick wine, that would be wild by popular. especially in letter states where there's more culturally
conservative voters, we will -- support progresstive candidates. >> if you want to talk to adam greene, here are the numbers to call: >> host: president obama last week unveiled his budget and talked about what he sees as a need to make modest cuts in medicare in order to save the program. >> both parties, for example, agree that the rising cost of caring for an aging generation is the single biggest driver of our long-term deficit. and the truth is for those like me who deeply believe in our social insurance program, think it's one of the core things our government needs to do, if we want to keep medicare working as well as it has, and we want to preserve the iron clad guarantee
that medicare represents, then we're going to have to make some changes. they don't have to be extras tick d drastic ones, and instead of making drastic ones later, we should make some manageable ones now. >> host: president obama last week. what's your response to the president saying medicare, in order to save it, got make. >> guest: that's just wrong. it's a little bit weird. it's a weird premise but it's a horrible policy. we have been talking to members across the country. people have personal stories about what social security and medicare mean to. the last week we talked to someone who, after paying off of his bills for the mock has 3.71 left in this bank can't. -- bank account. and our message this is not a math problem. these are real lives.
for people like sam there's nothing left to cut. stop picking on grandparents, widows, veterans, especially over the last couple of decades, corporations paying no tax and the rich paying much less than their fair share. things like millionaire tax, which is -- never gets put in the budget of the president. real corporate reform, so we finally have wall street pay their fair share not in the president busy government but he is willing to ask grandparents to pay more. so it's just wrong. and it would be devastating for democrats to support the president's budget in its current form. >> host: here's a tweet from bold progressive. what's your twitter handle? >> guest: bold progressive. >> host: least lack at a photograph. you can't call yourself a democrat and support social security benefit cuts. >> guest: yes.
reteam. we're drawing a line in the sand. if a democrat is willing to take on this 90% popular issue, on the republican line or be prepared for a primary, and i would say this also. we have done -- we do our homework and we have polled kentucky, ohio, maryland montana, all these red states, and even the red stateses, when you ask the question, would you be willing to cut social security benefits, by and large 60% say. no if democratsening not be there, we can convert them. ...
thankfully the tea party was not in the market but that's our plan b and plan a is working with congress books like ellen -- and mark takano from california who started this which basically says we will vote against any and every cut to social security and medicare and medicaid benefits and that's an absolute promise. it's the strongest possible language. some people said you'd never get over a dozen and now we are approaching 40 members of congress who are bold enough to say we will make this promise to her constituents. no benefit cuts.com invited to
be a citizen and let us know if you want to tell your member of congress. >> host: one of our followers on twitter right-wing radical right's mr. green is it moral for this generation to leave its debt on children? >> guest: is debt moral? that's a good question but i think the answer is it's immoral for us to essentially use the time we have to let the rich not pay their fair share and not let corporations pay their fair share. it's immoral to go as long as we have with the growing disparity of wealth in our country and do nothing about it and come up with the only solution being to cut benefits for widows etc.. that's immoral but let me put one fact out there again. right now congresswoman jan schakowsky from illinois has something called the millionaires -- and it says we have gone beyond
the clinton era tax rates of 59.6% and we will ask people making over million dollars to pay 45%, 10000045%, 100000000.48%. if you're lucky enough to making a billion dollars a year in income, 49% which is below the ronald reagan tax of 50%. that would put 1 trillion extra dollars on on the table. what's that mean? we can take things like our grandparents social security benefits cuts off the table. we support the more progressive approach and that more popular with voters not asking the guide -- >> host: sandy is asking can you be specific in telling us what percentage of income the rich should pay so the numbers from chairman schakowsky's office is what you stand by? >> guest: absolutely for individuals. there is a wall street gambling
tax all the financial transaction tax. many corporations today have these insane loopholes that allow them to pay no taxes are very few taxes and they should pay their fair share and tax reform would ask people like mitt romney who is now on this tax day paying 14% or less in taxes and we pay a lot more than that asking those people to stop hiding behind loopholes. if we do these things we don't have to cut and if it's for a grandparents and widows etc. and that is what we are asking democrats to stand behind is the principle. if they won't stand behind that they shouldn't call themselves democrats. >> host: adam green, director should t.j. communications and director of moveon.org. he did that from 2005 to to 2008 and has served as the press secretary for the national democratic committee in oregon during the 2004 presidential campaign and communication
structure for the new jersey democratic party back in 2003/ 2004. new mexico democratic caller joining us now. hi betty. >> caller: good morning libby and good morning mr. green. a couple of years ago i had the pleasure of calling and while you were appearing on c-span program so thank you for the wonderful work you do representing progressives. thank you again, sir. you are so right on. the american public needs to realize that corporate tax rates and the tax rates on the wealthy are the lowest that they have been in 60 years. this needs to be changed. it needs to be changed dramatically and certainly not on the backs of the working poor and the elderly. i can't thank you enough for what you are doing. you reiterate exactly what the journalist bartlett and steele said.
mr. bartlett was quoted on c-span on a q&a program. he said if you hear any politician say at any time that earned benefits program, not entitlement that earned benefits programs need to be dissolved in the deficit don't vote for them. thank you sir for what you do. >> host: before we let you go adam green talked about getting members of the regressive change camp committee to run for office locally. what are you doing in terms of activism and involvement in your community? >> caller: i make sure that i call the white house number every chance i get and they probably get tired of me because i'm always calling it and letting them know what i feel about whatever the subject happens to be. i am in customer service. anybody that happens to talk about politics i love becoming engaged with them and as far as i write letters to newspapers.
they don't publish a whole lot of what i have to say because i am a little bit too progressive. we have a newspaper here in town that does solidly right leaning which a lot of what i have to say. i do what i can and i call the white house as often as possible >> guest: betty, thank you again. really inspiring people like you paying attention to our political dialogue and those who are taking action is a big step and writing letters and making phonecalls. i hope you have gone to our web site bold progressive.org and joined us. we need people like you is part of our cause. one of the functions we play is to kind of push the reset button on the conversation we are having in washington. oftentimes we are fighting within a right-wing frame telling the public the only thing to do is to ask widows and
grandparents to pay a little bit more and what we what we are trg to say is exactly what you said. over the last several decades wealth disparity the difference in pay between corporate executives and their workers has grown exponentially in increasing gone out of control. we need to again push the reset button make these factors clear input items on the table like wall street asking them to pay their fair share. working with allies in congress like elizabeth warren and -- >> host: surely a republican caller. where are you in ohio? welcome to the program. >> caller: thank you very much. i'm so excited to be on. i wanted to, then i wanted to say was i think people need to be more educated about social
security and it's not meant to be a living wage. it's meant to be a supplement and i don't understand because so many people call and they are struggling but we need to educate people from an early age that it wasn't something to be lived on. it's a supplement and so that would be for both parties to understand. the word progressive and scares me, move on, a big red flag to me. >> host: why? why did they scare you? >> caller: because their agenda it seems to me is not to fix problems but to continue to raise taxes just like their rich which many of them are that but i am sure that they hide somewhere and i don't mean to be mean. but i just think to me, they are
a scary bunch and that's all i have to say. thank you. >> host: your response? >> guest: i can tell you are earnest so thanks for calling in essentially said that social security the way it was meant to be was as an augmentation for people over 65. we think a lot about what is the world meant to be and how should things be and really retirement was conceived as a truly good stool. you had pensions and social security and some of what i talked about before is the idea that two legs if lakes of that still will have really been kicked in by big corporations in this country. there has been a real move to get rid of pensions and the amount that are paid to workers doesn't allow them to save very much. again, when decades ago corporate ceos weren't getting that much more for their
workers, certainly a lot more but today is exponentially increased. we are talking about hundreds of a percentage of an increase going from 30 to 12300 to one. as productivity goes up for workers and workers have done their jobs, they haven't gotten a piece of that wealth that has been accumulated at the top in the way things were meant to be it hasn't really. social security for a lot of people is their retirement and we need to really make structural changes in the country that finally start asking corporations to consider their workers and respect their workers and share the wealth with their workers and that is the down payment to the day where savings and pensions will be enough but we can't live in a world where that doesn't exist. we can't ask a guy having $3.71 in his account paying a little bit more. that is putting the cart before the horse. we need to protect social security.
that type of thing is very popular so that shouldn't scare you. we are looking out for people like you. >> host: what do you say to our ohio caller who uses words like fear and scared as she talks about moveon.org and the label of progressive's? what's that about? >> guest: yeah potentially when you hear those terms, again i mentioned this great dialogue we are playing in right now and one of the things that i put my finger on is that sometimes those who don't stand up for principle something to the opposite, something opposite of wanting to solve the problem and i reject that and here's why. i think it's somewhat true by the tea party when you have these red states a 75% popular position which is don't cut so should kerry and a 15% that says cut social security and asking for purity around the 15%.
that's just wrong and corporations are asking around the idea that we won't tax corporations which is a special interest. that's just wrong. on our side of the issue there is bipartisanship on main street. republican voters and independent voters, democratic voters agree on most of the positions. ask the rich to pay their fair share and hold wall street accountable. wall street bankers that broke the law should go to jail and social security should be protected for our seniors. things like that are popular on main street and we think we are kind of confusing washington d.c. with this commonsense approach from the outside in. our hope is for a day where republicans actually represent 50% of voters and we can have a good dialogue with them. to the extent that party is in transient and sticking up for special interest in the fringe we will ask them to give like elizabeth warren does to the
public wealth and through the legislative process of the legislative process wing. >> host: at ingrained co-founder of progressive change campaign committee. let's go to wilmington north carolina and hear from jack who is an independent. hi jack. >> caller: good morning oblivion good morning mr. green. i am calling on independent line and while i do agree that you make a lot of valid points for instance senator carl levin was on last week talking about asking what is the corporate great? 35% but actually the effective rate that they pay is more like between 12 and 14. and we also know that who i am listening to is, i'm listening to simpson-bowles and also david walker and the come back america initiative. on their side they pointed out that you have close to
$1.5 trillion tied up in credits and deductions that of all the filers 20% those that are wealthy enough to itemize will get 80% of that money. but you know yourself sir that 65,000 pages of tax code and every one of those lines of code have the constituency behind them that are willing to fight. you're never going to get all of that so i tend to feel that the president has made this old leadership and initiative on this and now the ball is in the republicans court to begin to bring true tax reform so that we can in fact see many of the things he speak about mr. green the fact that the corporations aren't paying them like the fact that the wealthy are not paying their fair share. however both of those bipartisan debt commissions have pointed out the fact you can't tax your
way out of this thing and you can't cut your way out of this thing. you certainly don't want to cut real happy until the out-years when the economy has started to be recovering the last thing i want to say real quick alan simpson pointed out and erskine bowles didn't flinch when he set up at the trustees of social security was the easiest problem to fix. if you don't do anything when he stepped up to the window in 2030 and get 25% less i'm interested to hear lastly what are your fixes to medicare which is the biggest driver of our debt as the president has said and god bless you and thank you for your time. >> guest: you've packed a few things in there so i will unpack them if i can quickly. let's start with your last name first. what are the solutions to social security and medicare? social security is has a $2.5 billion surplus and as you said that will take us through several decades so those who want to extend several more
decades there a couple of things. it's called scrapping the cap or increasing the cap and what is the cap? what amount of your income you pay social security taxes on. george soros and warren buffett and bill gates only pay social security taxes on the first $113,000 of their income in all the rest is tax-free. what that means we are asking grandma to pony up a little bit more. social security would be solid so one-stop shop easy fix and the effect of taxing the rich and not taxing the poor. medicare. the numbers in washington is they are not willing to address entitlements. that is not true. we are not willing to take money from grandparents pockets. to give you one example if we allow medicare and medicaid is to negotiate prices with the drug companies we would save
$130 billion. that's a lot of money. that's a lot of grandparents we are keeping from having less in their pocket on their little income. that is entitlement reform. that's not something progressives would willfully swallow as part of a larger package. that's something that is outwardly the progressive thing to do. we are stopping big corporations from ripping off taxpayers. let's do a series of reforms systemic reform to bring down the cost of health care. taking away her grandparents money is not going to do anything for the cost of health care in a bad idea on the health care cost level. you mentioned -- alan simpson is a millionaire. it erskine bowles is a millionaire. their commission is very easy for them to sit back and be completely out of touch with people who have $3.71 left in their bank account. it's very easy them for say hey
i push the reset button and asked the rich to pay a little bit more. best easiest thing for them to do. it's horrible public policy. they are frankly illegitimate actors in our political dialogue in making these recommendations. it erskine bowles is a big corporate giant manner. [inaudible] we shouldn't cite them as the authorities and again the fact they didn't even put on the table asking that romney to pay 14% tax and put on the table the tax which would raise $1 billion shows the sku of their worldview. and finally you mentioned president obama. this gets to something that i call, we call -- what is your theory on winning the fight and engaging in the fight? if you start with a compromised position you'll need more than that in this case putting social
security benefit shouldn't be the compromised position. he has a certain boldness, not cutting a bad deal behind the scenes of not asking manufactumanufactu res what they would put out there by figuring out what has to be done in proposing it and then barnstorming the country and making republicans freak out because they're having to be held accountable to their voters every time the president is campaigning they need to stop summoning up the public will which is on his side which is a good thing but on this issue he has gone back to the weakest part when he has the least leverage when republicans had a fresh mandate in 2011. for some reason people like us have to say no stand on principle. he is a democrat. >> host: do you think there's a strategy behind the strategy that we are not saying in terms of the president offering a deal that republicans don't bite on it does that give them more leverage to track further to the
left? >> guest: some people call it this amazing mind game he is playing. with the republicans and i think it had little bit more plausibility before the election went again after the republican mandate of 2010 the supposed mandate he wanted to reassert his mandate. after the election to show he's a man of common sense. the election is over now and there is no incentive for him to do that. i thought it was more plausible. in this case the republicans have consistently made clear that they will not accept an iota more taxes on the rich. they have been giving multiple chances and if he was only concerned about the optics proving the point to the public he would be having private dinners with republican senators where he says no really i'm willing to cut social security benefits. let's cut a deal. that would be a necessary. the only thing that is in
pursuit of is cutting social security benefits which is what this president wants to do. people in the white house that i have worked with stewart down campaigns in the past are under this unfortunate idea that americans won't compromise for its own sake. it doesn't matter where there's a good compromise or a bad compromise. americans will just say it's a great feather in the cap of this president if he cuts a deal with republicans even if that deal with stealing money out of the pockets of grandparents and veterans. people want this president to fight harder and if it takes progressive movements like ours to mobilize 1 million people and pressure them to keep his plan to cut social security benefits this is what we'll do. >> host: adam green of the progressive campaign. let's hear from byron from tennessee, republican. hi iran. >> caller: i would like mr. graham to explain exactly what it progressive is. the reason i'm asking that is
because the communist party usa in the socialist party usa call themselves progressives also. i was also like to hear a comment on his comment about taxing the companies more, for them to pay taxes. i worked on budgets in the company i work for, those taxes are rolled into next year's cost so what you are talking about you would taxes to the consumer. i will get off a muddy comment. >> guest: i don't know what your business was. nothing against small businesses or businesses that play by the rules or operating good faith but when general electric pay $0 in taxes that's obviously a problem. we are investing more in egregious things like that.
what was the first one? >> host: he also talked about from his perspective seeing socialism and communism has eaten also labeled as progressive. >> guest: always happy to talk about less progressive means. it's the fundamental question is do you side with the little guy or that the guy in economic issues? that's it and that can be applied to pretty much any issue. are you willing to let the banks foreclose on people's houses or are where you stand with the victims as elizabeth warren did in the senate banking committee. on the health care issue, do you stand up to the big insurance companies that profit by denying people care or the pharmaceutical companies want to overcharge people for prescription drugs or stand up for little guy and allow health care to be affordable? on social security do you understand the ideas pickpocketing grandparents were fight for them and asking --
to pay their fair share? social issues are a little bit separate for us and being pro-choice is a prerequisite to any kind of thing we would support that we wouldn't make that the defining point of being progressive. we want to know someone is going to be there there fighting there fighting against big money interests that have taken over our democracy in so many ways working to rally republicans to defeat those interest. while you say some others that call themselves progressives one and fortune trend we have seen even corporate democrats who love to do the bidding of big corporations when they get into primaries call themselves progressives. it's very important that we stick up for the term that groups like ours but the educational function of informing our million members after doing due diligence for the true progressive isn't primaries and then getting some of those people like elizabeth warren allen grayson into governing. >> host: adam green you have
got involved in some other issues like gun reform, gun control legislation. let's take a look at the ad in the progressive change can pity -- committee aired in kentucky. >> i was born and raised right here in kentucky. i certainly country and we were trained to use guns safely. it's unthinkable that guns meant for war could be used against civilians and children. as a veteran i support keeping guns out of the wrong hands it is i don't know these guys. senator mitch mcconnell is funded by the government and he opposes commonsense reforms. senator mcconnell, whose side are you on? >> host: progressive campaign commercial. >> guest: this is an example of what happens when the president stands up for the progressive principles. his space can be along his side. to my knowledge the democratic
party hasn't spent money against mcconnell. one of our members, one of 20,000 gunowners on her list and elevating their voice. we are happy to be participating in the gun debate and now's announcing for the first time here we will be repairing that is across the louisville market. one small thing i would point out at the end of that ad. we -- between his special interests donations indisposition washington we hope it becomes the norm for all groups advocate on any issue to make sure they connect the dots. at the end of the day we have to make financial reform and make the case on guns health care on wall street and how -- and policies. >> host: where'd you come down on immigration debate? >> guest: they are great actors in the field. one group called lulac and others so my guess is there will be big action that we are not
going to try to -- the one thing i would say is this is an issue where republicans are coming into tension with their fringe base where it's obvious the future of this country includes a large hispanic population there republicans cannot afford for their political survival to be against this get consistently gravitated over to the other side. the dynamics that shake up here will be interesting and we see a lot of the undercurrents like issues on social security where the french majority -- >> host: let's hear from marty in florida, to mock that a caller. >> caller: hi. i just had a quick question. even while social security isn't rising very much every year with cola part b premiums are and right now my part b premium is
taking 11.1% of my entire social security check and if this continues i'm going to have to drop the part b coverage for my medicare. i will take you response off line if you have any comments. thank you. >> guest: you can treat me at adam green and i'm happy to continue the conversation after this is over. unfortunately present at obama's budget increases medicare for anybody in the future making the equivalent of $47,000 or more. that's going to be a hit for people like you and many people across the country. that's another reason we need to fight very hard to bring down the health care costs for seniors and hopefully increase social security benefits at some point and ask big corporations and the rich to finally pay their fair share. it shouldn't be coming out of your pocket. for those who agree with this point of view old progressives.org is their web site. you can help be the millionth member and it's an honor to talk with you today and play the role
that we do in democracy galvanizing members to take part in the election. >> host: let's hear from lewis in mississippi, independent. where are you calling us from? >> caller: . [inaudible] my comment to mr. green is i've heard about mr. romney's applicable tax rate but i wonder what his opinion is of the presidents tax rate of 18.2%? i believe he earned a gross income of $600,000 his income tax rate was only 18.2%. i would like to hear mr. green's response. >> host: lewis stay on the line for a moment with us. you are not only person asking that. bergman for congress tweets in and wants to know why the fred president didn't pay his fair share? there was no pain at