tv Washington Journal Max Cohen CSPAN December 12, 2022 2:26pm-3:01pm EST
>> tonight senators chris coons and todd young both on the foreign relations committee will be on a panel discussing u.s. competition with china and the chips act. the aspen security forum hosts. watch at 9 r 9:30 eastern on c-span2, online at c-span.org or with our free mobile video app, c-span now. >> there are a lot of places to get political information, but only at c-span do you get it straight from the source. no matter where you're from or where you stand on the issues, c-span is america's network. unfiltered, unbiased, word for word. if it happens here or here, or here or myrrh that matters, america is watching on c-span. powered by cable. >> host: this is max cohen, he is a congressional reporter with the organization punch bowl news joining us to talk about weekend
in congress. thanks for joining us. >> guest: thanks for having me on. >> host: a lot of publications cover capitol hill. what sets punch bowl apart? >> guest: sure. we're focused on leadership, and we're 100% focused on congress. we're really trying to cater to those on capitol hill. >> host: okay. where are leaders right now when it comes to establishing a federal budget for 2023? >> guest: good question. government fundingal runs out on friday, and there's still no top-line deal. there was some progress over the weekend. chair patrick leahy announced there was some progress, but the sides are still around $26 billion apart on this top-line number, and that's out of a larger $1.5 trillion plus package. we're probably going to have another week long continuing resolution until the 23rd where they'll try to work out a weeklong deal in that i'm to period. >> host: why is the debate over $26 billion if it's $1.5
trillion overall? >> guest: republicans is have traditionally gone along with pairing defense spending with thee increase in nest domestic spending. they don't want that continuing increase. they say democrats had enough increases with the inflation reduction act and ore reconciliation programs. democrats are still holding on that line. so there's still disagreement. we expect will the not to be a government shutdown, but it really depends whether there's a year-long omnibus or a year-long continuing resolution which would be pretty impactful for the pentagon and other departments. >> host: let's set those two apart, the dumps between having an omni -- the difference between having an omnibus and a c.r., explain that. >> guest: sure. the omnibus would change the funding to however much is negotiated in this time period, the continuing resolution would keep study at the fiscal year 2022 numbers, and defense
secretary lloyd austin has a written to the congress saying if it's kept steady, we're not going to be able to combat the threats the united states faces. democrats are trying to i say, look, the military says it's an issue. and then a c.r.? >> guest: without ann increase. >> host: several leadersid said they would introduce their own version. where is that, and what's the concern about a having a lot of different types of packages out there? >> guest: democrats were going to introduce theirs, leahy has said they're going to hold off. that's seen ass a good sign because when they start releasing their own frameworkings, political messaging. trying to score points, they're not positioning on what they can agree on. the fact that it has not been released is seen as a good sign.
>> host: max cohen is our guest, and if you want to ask him questions about the workings of congress particularly in these last couple of weeks of december, 202-748-8001 for republicans, 8000 for democrats, and 202-748-8002 for independents. if you want to text us your thoughts this morning, 202 the-748-8003 is how you do that, and you can always post on our facebook page and also our twitter feed asit well. we've talked a lot about leadership, you said your publicationyo covers leadership. kevin mccarthy is still in a current effort to try to get people to the decide to become house speaker next year. where is that in the process, and what is he doing to get to there? >> guest: he's still a couple votes short of the 218 he needs to be elected house speaker. we reported on a meeting he held late last week with members of the house freedom caucus and other far-right house members who are really holding back on support for mccarthy. he's trying to meet with these
people. matt gaetz is among hem, andy biggs, he's running for speaker, and currently they're saying they're a hard no on kevin mccar hawaii. .. karen what is her sense of what concessions is making to the various people he's talking to an order to gain their support? >> guest: he will have to make some pretty major rules, concessions. one instance is a motion to vacate the chair which is mechanism used by the freedom caucus during speaker boehner im a term which makes it, which lessens the power of leadership and that something my car they
came into this processy havinga pretty hard line on. he doesn't want to be yanked away like these members are proposing but thinking of how we have to move on that to make it easier for thatt mechanism to happen if you want to support. >> host: one of the things jim, has an op-ed on the "wall street journal" today set to become the chair the oversight committee and investigations seems to be one of the things that will focus on in the next congress. what is a plan from republican leadership to focus on investigations would also make legislative efforts as well? >> guest: when you have divided government, oversight is always going to take center stage because there will be little agreement between republicans and house, democrats and ascend overlarge bills. oversight will take a front seat but republicans have to be wary of their members, lose seats like new york, long island and they've come up publicly and said webl don't want this to be about hunter biden, about the
border, afghanistan and wee want to focus on inflation. it's unlikely use agreement across the houses on stuff like inflation or other large legislation. investigation will be front and center. sl whether some swing districts is beside the point. >> host: mosier since a source a conference republican conference overall in such a focus on investigation? >> guest: i've spoken to incoming chairman jim comey about this and he said look at the oversight committee is 8% of our conference, it's going to take up the majority of their time but he sang this is our job as the oversight committee. republicans say we campaigned on oversight. they said voters want a check on the biden administration. they want to look into covert funding, origins of covid, the afghanistan withdrawal. the first press conference jim gohmert and jim jordan held was on the biden family and business dealings. they have beenam upfront about . that would be a major focus and they said this is what the base
voters what. >> host: our guest with us either way the website is punchbowl news news ifne you'reo check out their work. lets you from frederick in florida, independent line with our guestin max cohen of punchbl news. go ahead. >> caller: good morning. i'm a 94-year-old american citizen. both my parents were immigrants who came in through ellis island. and at that point they were both required to have a job before they came to this country. also they needed a sponsor. when did this all changed and what are the laws now that pertain to immigration? it doesn't seem to be any particular law, just open border. we are perplexed as to the situation at the time.
would like some answers from someone. thank you. >> guest: so emigration obviously is a big issue for a lot of republican voters. there is some legislation being proposed currently some deals being made between kyrsten sinema and thom tillis for immigration reform. that's unlikely to pass in this current congress but another major issue throughout the biden administration's been the treatment of refugees, title 42 is an order which the biden administration could expel refugees because of covid concerns, across the border, cleaning refuge. but democrats have said this is inhumane.s it's clear immigration is a a major concern for voters here. >> host: it's one of those things jim, the first thing illicit when it comes to the sinks to investigate next year. a large focus of the committee i would suspect.
>> guest: certainly. and as you mention the border is a major rallying cry for republicans. that's one of the issues they saw as one of the top campaign promises, , we're going to lookt the border. another rallying cry among republicans why is joe biden not visit the border. >> host: one of the things you would obviously was hakeem jeffries now did he become a husband you really next congress. what does hee faces leader especially amongst his conference? >> guest: he's following the footsteps of nancy pelosi who is about counter. he is going after trying to fill her shoes and command the respect of the democratic caucus which is no easy feat after nancy pelosi has ruled with an iron fist of sorts for decades. he's also going into combat republicans. they are back in the majority. another big focus is taking back the majority as we mentioned. republicans have thinpu majorit. they underperformed in the midterms and jeffries will have to combat republicans at every turn while alsoo focusing on a
campaign strategy to win back the seats so we he can become speaker in 2024. >> host: one of the differences in style is when it comes to speaker pelosi was a top-down approach. what approach could jeffries employed when talking to democrats or rallying democrats? >> guest: the need for generational change. the age difference is a stark difference in the new era of generational leadership here for democrats. hakeem jeffries katherine clark and pete aguiar and they're all in their 50s or 40s whereas pelosi, clyburn and hoyer are all in their '80s. just by that measure there are newer members thatmb are spokeny wanting to connect with the freshman classes. those elected in the blue wave of 2018 and be more cognizant of members interest rather than a top-down approach you mentioned but the leadership likes to keep out among themselves so we'll see. >> host: speaking of the democratic party one of those democrats last week a a former democrat we should save kyrsten sinema deciding to become an
independent. how is that we see but democrats overall? >> guest: it was a surprise not altogether shocking. anyone who watched her over the past? can see yourself moving away from the democratic lines and the democratic party if the chief issue mentioned was the filibuster. voting rights reform. that's a massive issue for the democratic base and she said i'm not going to budge on this issue. issue. just because it motivates the base. the filibuster must protect it. she broke with democrats there. cause a lot of anger from basin of the democratic members of congress and they see this move in terms of her reelection, the big invitation here issue and i had to face the democrat in the primary if she t runs in 2024 fr the senate and an independent run mean she can go right to the general. g how democrats approach that in a must win state arizona will be interesting to watch. >> host: one of those sharp criticisms came from bernie sanders who was on the send us your yes, it was asked about this. i'll play what he had to say and
get your reaction. >> you were a very important figure on the campaign trail for progressives ahead of the midterms as you normally are. i'm sure you're going to be campaigning for candidates in 2024. the outgoing arizona democratic party official, one of them says he expects democrats will run their own candidate against her. is that a good idea? would you support a democratic opponent against senator sinema? >> i support progressive candidates all over this country. people havee the guts to take on powerful special interests. i don't know what would happen in arizonakn will see who the nominate but certainly that something i will take hard look at. >> does she have the guts to take on powerful special interest? >> no, , she doesn't. she is a corporate democrat who has, in fact, along with senator manchin sabotage enormously legislation. >> host: would you say that kind of sentiment is shared by many of the democratic party at least in the senate or some are just bernie sanders? >> guest: few will say that
strongly publicly but now that she's left the party perhaps more will comeft forward. in private some democrats share that view for sure. they saw her as a thorn in the democrat side during the last congress 50-50. many type negotiations over packets like inflation protection act and was on stance she took stand up for some tax breaks have benefited hedge funds come her critics argued which angered a lot of democrats, you'd is a democrat labor would sanders used. the one thing i do want to flag is this is that change the balance of power in the senate as you go for next congress. there will be 51 votes votes for democrats, 49 for republicans but this does impact her decision on reelection. >> host: democrat in maryland, mrs. correll. hello. >> caller: how are you doing? how're you doing, max? i want to talk about the immigration bill in 2013 under
obama where 67 senators had voted for immigration bill, and i wonder whyon we don't talk abt that bill because maxine waters said ifbe john boehner had avoid a bill, a vote in the house of representatives that it would have passed. but was it because obama was getting too many wins or you know, i mean i know we're divided and all but we could have got immigration back in 2013. do you agree with that? >> guest: it's an interesting statement you made about what motivates leaders to put certain bills on the floor. there's an understanding that if your speaker of the opposite party you to o want to be seen s giving a president, democrat president to win. immigration debate has shifted. the rhetoric has increased. former president trump made it the centerpiece of hisp campaign
and we've seen a lot more pointed attacks and immigration to where republicans in congress and their skewed anything that was belittled as amnesty which is referred to treatment of undocumented immigrants or in the country or dream is perhaps. republican politicians are beholden to the base as is any politician and the republican base currently has a appetite for immigration reform. perhaps an era of nine or she o years ago might've been more right for compromise. negotiations being reported come we don't see that as having much legs in the waning days of his caucus of immigration reform might have to wait again. >> host: one of the pieces of legislation that the passed last week was national defense authorization act, goes to the senate. talk about with this expectation is. >> guest: we expect this to pass the senate sometime this week. there's going to be a time agreedic between democratic and republican leaders to see this through. we reported this morning and punchbowl news a.m. pacific in
syria message bill which means there will be a simple majority vote to bring the bill come to get on thean bill and then there would be one closure vote which requires 60 votes. this would be a relatively easy lift for senators that will overwhelm the passed the house bipartisan support last week and there's a lot for everyone in here your family out-of-favor congressional republicans, there's a provision which rescinds the covid vaccine mandate for servicemembers and military which was a big win for republicans, and democrats capable bit onit this one >> host: $858 billion in discretionary spending your part of also getting with a increase for the military. >> guest: and that $858 billion number isn't authorization for concerts not appropriate but that is $45 billion more than the by the white house requested earlier this year, showing in congress and their still broad bipartisan support for increasing defense spending even beyond what the white house requested. >> host: thisr is dave in michigan independent line. >> caller: good morning.
max, i got kind of a simple question for you, maybe. on our military spending, you hear money going out all the time. does nato play a a role and de play a role and brisket account of the process of what we get back other than an added boy from some of our stuff? is or an interest rate that is they get out how fuel we burn, how much, you got the army corps of engineers ado whole lot overseas and so forth. what kind of return of the getting for our money? if that accounted for and do they take it into consideration when they write these bills? thank you very much max and look forward for your call. >> guest: thank you for your question. you are talking about pentagon funding and audits of that come something we for progressives call a lotog for. congressman mark poe can tweeted for an audit o on the pentagon. we spend billions of dollars come hundreds of billions of
dollars on defense o spending ad i might not be as much oversight over that spending. other spending, we've also seen bipartisan calls among republicans for oversight of domestic covid spending, democratic spending in inflation reduction act, and the american rescue plan. it's fair to say across the political spectrum there's a lot of appetite for seeing where this money goes, how it is spent and connects us back to oversight for a second or we'll see republicans call for oversight itt ppp payment protection -- paycheck protection program spending which happened in the early days of the pandemic, a lot of front of their facing to investigate. >> host: from jean in florida, democrat's line. go ahead comic good morning, pedro. happy holidays. very happy to watch and listen to this way. i've been watching many, many years. i have a comment about kyrsten sinema, and have little letter that i am about ready to mail to her and i would like to take a minute just to read it to you.
may i? good morning. >> host: apportioned if you can. go ahead, first of all it saddened and disappointed me that you change from democrat to republican as a young democrat i have high hopes for these young people even this gentleman here. i love to see young people involved in politics. ii was born in pennsylvania. 89. during the depression with her franklin delano roosevelt, if it hadn't been for their family, if it hadn't been for then perhaps our family probably would not have survived and end up being the first grandchild to graduate from college, all that stuff. eifert proud to be a democrat the washington is that the middle-class of the united states. we older americans all thehe democrats we are out here and we want remember all the historical events and policies of the republican administration that followed many of the democrats. i want to become, i went on to become a teacher. i raise three children, five grandchildren and the first
woman and democrat to be elected to my local school board. i was 40 years old. i survived five elections, two teacher strikes and lots of humiliation of the democrats. here's what you want to say to you and to all the young democrats the got elected. good for you. remember your roots. just remember your roots, and those who had the courage to run before you, and without the democrats would not have social security or medicare, which the older democrats really appreciate. >> host: got you. thank you so much for sharing that with us. in a response? >> guest: one thing i want to bring up his kyrsten sinema has not always been a democrat. she ran for local city council in arizona as a green party member in the early 2000s she switched to the democratic party when she was involved in the arizona state legislature. that elected and u.s. house as a
democrat, elected to the senate as a democrat and is that an independent. this is someone running for office friend 20 years and has it three different party affiliations. she's not a democrat for her whole life. you have seen sinema look at what the political winds are throughout her tenure in office and change with what she thinks might get her elected. >> host: we are about to do the january 6th committee of wrap updo work and issue its fil report. overall what are we expecting as far as the end of the committee's work? >> guest: we'll get a comprehensive look at former president donald trump's role in agenda at sixth attack on the capitol. we will see some legislative recommendations to protect democracy against a further attack on the capitol. in my opinion i am tracking the close of the everton house and senate to reform the electoral count act which is a 19th-century law whichry deals with the county of president xi electors. that's more legislative leg than any report from the january 6th committee.
there are twowo dueling bills, senate product which is held by susan collins, joe manchin, amy klobuchar, roy blunt which has over 37 bipartisan cosponsors. they can getsa over 60 votes. the house bill by the vice chair of the committee liz cheney and also has the administration committee chair phil lofgren. at the competing bill. can the senate negotiators get the reform act in the omnibus legislation if it gets passed at all? that's what i'm tracking. >> host: have we heard from any member of the committee or leadership of the committee about a definite criminal conviction coming for the former president? >> guest: we made the recommendation back in the final committee, earlier this year to recommend criminal charges against him orim president trum. unclear what the department ofid justice does with that. t that's what we will track and sits in the doj's jurisdiction. jurisdiction. the committee can make these t recommendations but they don't carry much weight. >> host: let's hear from him
it in texas, independent line. >> caller: yeah. i would like to say thank god for senatorfo sinema, but i fear that it's not enough. the democrats now have the opportunity along with vice president kamala harris to pack the supreme court. what's going to keep them from doing it? go ahead. >> guest: i think many democrats have come out against the proposal to increase the number of justices sit on the supreme court a lot of more moderate centrist democrats as of this is not a good idea. republicans can do the same thing. it's not always an adventure democrats so there's very little chance of democrats to increase number of justices. i don't see that happening. >> host: this is can't in illinois, republican. >> caller: good morning. now that the republicans will start looking into the biden's
and have ended up with millions of dollars from the chinese and these other countries that are our enemies, you hear the democrats saying we don't want no investigations, let's get on with th' people's business, we don't want -- who cares about the biden's? who cares about the millions of people crossing the borders illegally? who cares that we left hundreds of billions of dollars worth of equipment and afghanistan? my goodness, the democrats impeached trump twice, nine out of ten people couldn't tell you why. that's all nancy pelosi and her counterparts did was investigate. and now when republicans are going to start uncovering some of the stuff, the democrats say gosh, there's nothing there, let's get along with the people's business. well we are the people, the millions of people immigrating here are bringing diseases, we
are second hundreds of thousands of kids killed by fentanyl and we say there's a interest in the millions of people crossing the borders illegally? who's asleep? i mean my goodness the people out here want to know if the trump's were getting billions of dollars on the chinese, that's all you would have heard. now that they are going to uncover the biden's no one wants to talk about it. >> guest: the point that caller touched on in terms of democrats not going to investigate democrat democrats, we've seen that for decades consistent in american politics. when trump was in office you are many congressional t republicans say this was settled at the ballot box in 2016. get over it. you hear democrats we purpose outlined. line eifert democrats involved countering republican festers to come if republicans are more
focused onns hunter biden and biden's family and your own family at home. this kind of rhetoric is consistent and we'll see democrats play defense for the biden administration and safe this is deflecting for what americans want. this is similar to when donald trump was being investigated. republicans said let's focus on the business off the legislatur, this goes back to senator sinema but this is lori from maryland to have an elected official change parties if you're elected one party you should be able to change until your term is over. >> guest: interesting proposal. i would again stress that yes sinema is now an independent but it is our expectation to be the 51st democratic vote on many issues. but remember she voted to confirm justice cottone g brown jackson. sinema voted for the inflation reduction act, but in the rescue plan. sinema a soda for the vast majority of president biden's appointees, his cabinet to other judicial nominees. senator sinema i think as a role
that's closer to the democratic party than the republican party. sinema is chosen she doesn't want to be with either but any sort notion that sinema will caucus with republicans or become a republican are pretty far-fetched. so sorting yes she's independet now and she is still considered, keep committee assignments with the democrats. >> host: a process question from of you are saying who are your best source of accurate information? i'm not asking for next the leakage information as a congressional aide, congressional representatives, all of the above, none of the above. why should we believe any news outlet? >> guest: that's quite a question. yes, i was a diversify your new sources. c-span d is an excellent sourcef information for nonbiased news. i'd like to thank that punchbowl news is good resource as well but yes, we talked to congressional sources, aids, staffers, politicians are passively gather our news onn capitol hill. there are a number of excellent publications coming capitol hill. roll call, "new york times", the associate press, "washington post" could go on and on but i
would say focused on the outlets whichu present you facts, which present analysis that a reasonable come try to stay with the outlets the present news as entertainment or sensational. >> host: from maryland this is independent line, michael. good morning you are on with max cohen with punchbowlrn news. >> caller: thanks for getting on the line. i want to quickly make a conservation to the program. one of your callers -- was talking about the immigration law why that change. in reference to immigrants need to get sponsored i just want to touch on that and say that immigration law is still active and it still in force. i am a legal immigrant. i had to be sponsored by my job before i got here. so that law is still active. that law is still valid and people need to get sponsors, need to get a a job for the g. just we need to recognize some
people may not and so you classify them as illegal migrants. all migrantsla are not legal or illegal.l. some may be legal or illegal so that immigration was still valid. thank you. >> guest: that's correct. there are distinctions of immigration law. it's a very complex part of government. there need to be visa sponsorships for some jobs, and also when open borders this talk about is important remember some of the immigrants were entering the united states are going to claim refuge. the united states government has protection for those seeking refuge, displaced migrants from war zones for economic reasons and thatl all need to be processed in u.s. immigration court. >> host: diane from a republican line, dalton, georgia, comic i would like to cite four four thinks if in please. number one, biden promised he
would have why china -- [inaudible] okay, i've been waiting for two years almost any cityfo would do it. i'd like to see him do it, okay? number two, the immigration, let me tell you something when you live in dalton and they come in and take your jobs and they threaten you and you have been near 70 years, they do not, cannot -- [inaudible] don't tell me something got to be donee here, okay? number two, biden is, he's paying everybody everything they want to get them back home and he ain't paying nothing to nobody else but the ones who promises stuff. he promises to bring them across the border. let's been through. everything. dalton, georgia, eggs is $5.38 a dozen. a gallon a gallon of mil?
you count that as a loaf of bread 15, almost four dollars a loaf. you tell him we need somebody in there that's going to help the american people, and i'm a senior citizen. >> host: that's diane in georgia. let's go backgo to the topic we started with. we talked about timelines and budgets. what time when i would look at and is christmas a reasonable expectation? >> guest: the first time what is the 16th this friday is one government funding runs out. expect there to be another weeklong step got -- stopgap funding bellicose to the 23rd. i'm looking at december 23 as the deadline here for negotiators to come to an on the this deal or continuing resolution. that's what i see legislator start to look okay christmas is coming up, the holidays, don't wantgr to take a week off until january 3 or do we want to be back your after christmas before new year's? they are still ways apart on negotiations but it's been my experience that as soon as they call it becomes a that can be pretty motivating in terms of getting the two side to come to
an agreement. it will be crucial stretch the 16th ofme the 23rd they need to get a pop on number on how much this omnibus is going to cost. very quickly. if it takes around a week and have to get big spending bills, thousands of pages passed in both houses of congress and signed by the president, we need to move quickly. who knows what happens between now and the 23rd but as i said with the holiday looming will cause these negotiations to quicken, we've heardns kevin mccarthy suggest wait until the republicans get the gavel and then call the shot. it's their reality. >> guest: there could be i think as you mention, republicans take of government january 3. democrats have a big incentive to pass a budget which will be more amenable to their interests before that timeline. the republicans in the senate like mitch mcconnell are say look you guys want to, to us now, less than what you want, that's to be better mcconnell argues that what republican house and democratic senate can come up with in 2023.
that's why democrats are going to try to get cromnibus a deal past even if us that every single priority because they see that as moresi beneficial than dealing with a mccarthy republican dominated. >> host:cc punchbowl news is a website. you can see his work and others work. thanks again pressure time. >> guest: thank you. play to to be on. >> we take you live to the capitol with us and is ready to gavel in. at 5:30 p.m. eastern lawmakers will vote to confirm a u.s. court of appeals judge for the third circuit. also this week members will take up the final version of the 2023 defense authorization bill. you are watching live senate coverage here on c-span2.