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tv   Washington Journal Jim Tankersley  CSPAN  July 15, 2020 2:38pm-3:20pm EDT

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return on monday to resume legislative business following their state work period over the holiday. they will consider the defense authorization act with the votes expected as early as 11:30 a.m. eastern .the senate convenes at 3:00 p.m. on the nomination of russell servingho has been in an acting capacity since january of 2019. advanceded debate and has nomination on a partyline vote of 47-44. 5:30 p.m., they will vote on the nomination. watch live coverage of the house when they return on c-span, coverage of the senate on c-span2. host: new york times tax reporter joins as for a conversation about the joe biden's campaign of ads.
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the first was released last week. explain the pitch that the camp is making with the spending and economic investment plans? guest: sure. what joe biden is trying to do is counter president trump on the economy. the president won the election on part of a populist pitch to american workers at feel left behind in the current economy, in particular by making an appeal to the midwest about manufacturing jobs. new plan he put out last week is called "build back better." live laughtle like love, but for the economy. with the former vice president wants to do is promote more of what he calls a buy american youth host. he is going to get the government to spend hundreds of
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billions of dollars more on american-made products. he is going to take other steps to make the country produce more things here so there are more manufacturing jobs, something that presidents and presidential candidates for a long time have promised. the former vice president is leaning into it here in an effort to take away some of donald trump's industrial midwestern support. host: $700 billion investment plan came out last week, followed by yesterday a $2 trillion plan linked to climate change and economic recovery. dive into that. guest: it is a different topic, you might say. as anyone who has paid attention to the way democrats talk about climate change over the last decade knows, it is being framed by biden as a jobs issue. he is talking about making things in america. in this case, electric vehicles, overhauling infrastructure. he wants to get america entirely
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off of fossil fuel production and on to clean energy. spend $2plan to trillion increasing investments in american infrastructure and creatingn in hopes of what he says will be millions of union jobs in the clean energy sector. the president's campaign and --ers worn would threaten warn would threaten jobs that already exist in fossil fuel. host: what else are you expecting? guest: we expect two more big speeches. he has promised this is going to be a big bold plan. seeingch step, we are the former vice president being willing to spend more money. had the comparatively smallest plan in terms of new federal spending in the
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primaries, but he is moving more toward the visions of candidates like elizabeth warren or cory booker in the way he is a federalideas like guarantee program for federal workers which would expand the federal workforce. ftc in theike the fdr era. biden is certainly nowhere close to the level of spending that elizabeth warren or bernie sanders had during the primary, but he is signaling a willingness to aggressively tax very high earners and the wealthy in order to fund what his campaign calls investments middle-class.e of four are two out plants in and we are at $2.7 trillion in spending.
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who is going to be taxed? how much does he expect to raise from that? where else could this money come from? guest: he had in the primaries a plan just north of $3 trillion in tax increases. that is growing now. he is talking about reversing that of the trump tax cuts benefited large corporations and the wealthy. he would raise the corporate income tax rates, raise taxes on capital gains which are largely paid by higher earning investors. i think the campaign has drawn a , people that we would consider the upper-middle-class, or truly the lower rungs of high earners will not see tax increases under his plan. what he is promising as he can do all of this on the backs of the rich and big companies. that is something that democrats in the primary raced to see who
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could tax the rich more. proposalsa lot of democrats have lying around for different ways to tax wall street, or multinational corporations, or wealthy individuals. it appears biden is going to be deploying more of those then he said in the primary, but nowhere close to a bernie sanders level of tax. host: the biden economic pland and economics in general are the topic. you can call in. the phone lines are open to democrats, (202) 748-8000. republicans, (202) 748-8001. , (202) 748-8002. i would be remiss not to ask about your forthcoming book, "the riches of this land:
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the true story of this country's middle-class." what are you writing about and why are you writing about it? then 10 years one has an economics reporter in washington a sickly chasing this question of why the economy does not work for the middle class in the way that all americans had hoped and expected after the golden era of the decades following world war ii when we pulled millions into the middle class and delivered on the american dream. economyound is that the has stopped working for everyone because we stopped breaking down the barriers that exist that keep talented people from getting ahead. what economic research and history shows us is there is a group of workers who, when they surged into better opportunities , the entire economy benefited. that includes women, workers of color, immigrants.
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empowering them is the key to revitalizing the economy both overall for the middle class, and particular coming out of a pandemic recession when we know that black workers and hispanic workers and women have been on the front lines, essential workers for health impacts and economic impacts. investing in them, getting them back to better opportunities, reducing racism and sexism that has held them back, that is going to help not just those workers, but everybody. it is going to help white workers in ohio. it is going to help men and women. it is what history shows us lifts the entire economy up and i think it is the recipe for another golden era in america. land""the riches of this out just in time for your late summer reading. derek, lake land, minnesota. caller: good morning, america.
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i have a couple of comments. i am not complaining about this. washington journal i have been watching for 30 years. times reporters on, maybe you should probably have a segment with barry weiss talking about a resignation. a newspaper that is supposed to be about the first amendment is not about free speech. it is very bad over there in your newsroom. your editors have been sticking up for -- i will get on. host: let me just say, jim tankersley, do you want to comment about the editorial side of the paper and how much involvement or interaction you have with that? guest: i don't. i know some of the folks who work in the editorial, but they are a different department than ours. don't have a comment on what is going on on that side.
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say i have always felt supported by my editors at the new york times. i have written a lot of stories that a lot of people have disagreed with. i know conservative americans are upset about what has happened with barry weiss. i have written a lot of stories that upset liberals. they complained to my bosses and they have always supported be no matter who was angry at me. host: to your economics question. caller: i would say that there is no firewall. that tookeporters down the opinion editor in the past. weiss'uld read barry resignation letter. free presshat, the has no free speech. that is crazy. let's talk about the economy. biden's plan to bring electronic vehicles and electric vehicles, we have done that before with
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obama. calleduld look at a book -- by michael shellenberger. fantastic guy. he was the original green new deal guy in the early 2000's. he saw the corruption what happened. obama brought in $80 billion and it went through a handful of people -- basically you invest on lobby the government and get a return of x. these guys made off like bandits. $80 billion from a handful of and it didn't do anything. in every country, look at france, germany, electric prices will go up. host: derek in minnesota. jim tankersley, is the joe biden campaign concerned that these plans are picking winners and losers? that was a part of the concern when the solyndra issue came up. guest: i think it is the concern
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anytime the government gets involved in trying to promote a particular center of the economy good not just the obama administration, it is something the trumpet ministration has tried to do. they are aware of those arguments. their argument is that this is where the economy is going. a low carbon future is --, but there is a race across the world to be leaders and technology. governments are getting involved everywhere. the flipside to that argument is exactly what the caller said. there are choices you have to make. electricity prices will likely go up in the event of certain climate policy. it is also true that electricity prices have been fairly muted over the last decade or so because of technological advances in hydraulic fracturing. not all predictions have come to
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pass about any of it. , i used tollenberger cover energy the chicago tribune and i have been steeped in all of the arguments. i will say the economic arguments about clean energy have evolved. the administration -- the current administration has policy that favors particular types of energy. they very much are actively trying to help coal. that is something we have seen from presidents across time, they try to promote the things that they believe are most important to the national economy. democrats are reacting to some of that, and more aggressively pushing their own visions. host: the caller mentions the green new deal. $2 trillion certainly does not go as far as the green new deal. were any of those folks involved in coming up with the green new deal involved in helping joe
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biden create this plan or any of the other economic plans? isst: what joe biden has had a deep veil of secrecy over who exactly are his closest advisors on the economy. there is a rule among people who are part of various -- some of the taskforces advising him that they are not allowed to speak to the press about their involvement. it is also true that he has had a public process, a unity process with his former primary arrival bernie sanders. many of sanders' allies have joined with joe biden's allies to present recommendations for policy. those include some green new deal folks. i think that it is unclear as of yet just how much impact those recommendations will have. they have clearly had some. material ofis the
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the campaign. futureen staffs a administration with, what policies he chooses to emphasize over others if elected, those are the things that it is difficult to tell now, but you can look for clues based on people around him and who he seems to be drawing guidance from. host: fort worth, texas. this is evelyn, a democrat. caller: thank you for taking my call. my concern is regarding the economy. how our relation is globally -- the way i understand, since president trump has been in we have poor relations , european countries countries. especially china.
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i understand about china, they have been planning and make trade deals with other countries like south america and the asian-pacific areas. -- president trump has basically isolated us from everyone else. i was concerned about that. host: let's take up that concern. that is a big topic. how much is joe biden looking to reach out to these countries? a big part of the plan he announced last week was the buy american policy, the make it in america policy. guest: joe biden is trying to walk a line wherein he adopts the things you like about the president's approach to trying to promote domestic manufacturing while also talking about trying to engage america with the world. is a concrete policy
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question the caller is alluding to, the obama administration had negotiated the transpacific partnership. an agreement with pacific rim countries for trade. nixedent trump has america's involvement in that. haveiden, the last that i read although i have not talked with the campaign the last i read, the campaign would not seek to reenter that but seek to renegotiate the terms of the tpp in order to create a better deal for america. it is a thin line. he is trying to both say he wants to be more engaged on the global stage and have more influence on trading partners than president trump has, while at the same time saying he will be just as hawkish about bringing jobs back to america. host: this is from the editorial board of the washington times, " bidens liberal borrowing.
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tip toen owes a hat president trump whose 2017 inaugural day speech included the following, buy american and higher american. the policy over friday, the president could simply have referenced the old saying imitation is the sincerest form of flattery." charles out of fort collins, colorado. caller: good morning. i am glad you alluded to the tpp. i think they should bring that india to takede away some business from china. put pressure on china who will put pressure on north korea. we have too many eggs in one basket in china. besides that, it troubles me
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when i see americans about taxes. if you look back in the fdr years, a lot of the corporate taxes were 70% and higher. was we were doing very well back then. we are seeing with marginal rates and everything, our tax so low. it is not bringing jobs back. maybe a little, but you are not going to cut taxes and create wealth in this nation. the supply-side trickle down, i do not see it ever working and it never has. even during fdr. when you're they tried to and it didn't work. greed,ee this corporate middle america since the 1970's, the income disparity keeps growing. now we have unrest. when people don't see hope, when
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people don't have jobs, you have revolution. [laughter] host: sounds like a topic you might address in that book you are writing. guest: i do. read about every day as my job as an economics reporter, i would say there certainly is a real -- there has been a robust debate of the last three years, but not much evidence that the president's tax cuts have brought jobs and investment back to the neat -- back to the united states at the rate the president promised. i would say the data are clear that promises have not come true about how much investment would return and in particular, how much new would come in from abroad. to deal not seeking with what the caller is talking about the racing corporate taxes anywhere near that corporate high.
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he was talking about going back to where they were before the trump tax can't -- text cap -- acknowledgment that the previous rate was uncompetitive compared to other countries around the world and their corporate tax cuts. nerdy aboutg politics, but it shows the incrementalism that continues to dominate on both sides. president trump wiped out , but he took it from a high of 35% to 21%. joe biden is talking about crawling that back. that is the game they are playing. that is where the debate, the terrain of the debate. host: from corporate taxes with visual taxes, since it is tax about thewhat we know joe biden plan when it comes to individual tax rates?
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guest: he would raise the top income tax rate back to where it was before the trunk -- the trump tax cuts. talk aboutis rivals doing much more than that. democrats in congress have about as much as a 70% top personal tax rate. democrats whony were running on the primaries, has not talked about reversing the tax cuts that lower and middle income americans receive. which were, as a share of the overall tax cuts, relatively small but still meaningful to the vast majority of americans. thing that may be in the interest of your viewers and -- for california and new york, places with higher taxes, joe biden wants to restore the --
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state and local tax reduction which would amount to a tax cut for upper middle and higher earners in high tax places like new york city under the bay area. to go back tog, the question of why the economy booms so much at different times , it can be hard to tease that out. we can look back and say taxes were higher in the economy was doing better, but we can't call that causal. there is empirical evidence about what was different in those years after world war ii and how much did it help the economy grow and help income grow. i am not going to give the whole thing away, but the answer has a lot to do with reducing discrimination and opening up occupations to people who had previously been told, and hey, you can't be a doctor. i think there is a lot for
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america to do that has some, not entirely to do with tax policy. host: "riches of this land: the true story of this countries middle-class." about 20 minutes left with jim tankersley. taking your phone call. caller: good morning. good to see you guys going to work today. i want to say a few different c-span, i am- losing faith in you. i have been watching you guys for four or five years. i have been watching you since before trump. i notice you guys seem to be biased on a lot of programs shall, guests you bring on, specials about communities you put forth. host: what is an example of that?
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i promise if you keep watching you will find somebody who you do agree with. caller: i do. when you guys do that, it is only for about two minutes and then you put democratic people on there for the rest of the 58 minutes. whether it is something good or bad on any aspect, i sit and watch you guys do that. women oft's from the the president's lives or whatnot. i don't hear anything ever about misses trump. when your new thing comes out about the first lady, you don't even mention her. host: i promise you, in the first lady series, if we can get an interview with melania trump, we will certainly do that. i promise you, stick around. i hope you do keep watching because we do our best around here to bring you all sides of
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the discussion. caller: i hope so. i will keep praying for that. news orjust watch one read one paper. it does seem that sometimes you guys do do that. it is better than some, but try to stay down the line. decidesthat when trump he is going to let medical andjuana for all 50 states, american veterans will quit passing away and committing thende, stop this nonsense , i think it will be better. oft: this is stephen out chester, new york. caller: good morning. i would like to ask a question regarding the corporate overseas --fits under the biden plan
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[indiscernible] host: -- guest: i'm sorry, i had a hard time hearing that. i am have long -- i am having trouble hearing you too. i think the topic was corporate profits being brought back and when. that general topic. if you can talk about that, maybe that is a possible debate point in the 2020 election. now isso, the way it is that corporate profits held overseas have been subject to a one-time repatriation tax. then, there is a very complicated system of attempting to tax corporate profits on
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various types of income. it tries to be a global minimum tax, i think the easiest way to describe both what joe biden and the democratic party in general the bitedo is increase of that tax. i do not know that we are going to go back to the old system, even if democrats take power of both the house and senate, and also the white house. there are a lot of proposals hanging around among leading andcrats on capitol hill, within the campaign about how to more aggressively tax corporate profits that are earned and held overseas. that is obviously going to be a big flashpoint and a big -- for some of the plants joe biden is offering. -- some of the plans joe biden
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is offering. caller: first, i would like to say i have been watching you guys for over 35 years. thank as i'm seeing time go by and i have seen stuff gets done in office, one thing i do bring to point when i have a discussion with any democrat is when donald trump got into office, democrat hated him and more or less, some republicans hated him and i do
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believe it is because he did not want to play the game and he said some things that maybe he shouldn't say but i watch his actions. with joe biden becoming the president, possibly, what is joe biden going to do to change? he has had all this time to correct these things and i see the good that donald trump is doing even though he may word things not the greatest way, but his actions are proven and how is it that joe biden is actually going to make america down a and of equality, for jobs everything else, given his track record that i have seen over the past 40 years? a great question, a fundamental question of this campaign, and i have been reporting on the economy long enough to know that it is something people are tired of. i would ask quickly, what policies you think have been
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both effective that the president has pursued for helping the economy? host: i think the caller hung up. guest: sorry. i would just answer then. a very good question, i was looking for a little more context for it. to sell toden has the american public is the idea that he can be effective with hascies, many of which he been talking about for a long time, some of which he has not been talking about for a long time, both reversing long-running trends of paying for americans in the middle class or of an economy that does not deliver to their expectations, but also to know how to finish the work of lifting the country out of a deep recession, which is hard. one thing joe biden has been emphasizing in recent weeks is the obamaerience, and administration, they inherited a
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recession and he was the tip of the spear for the recovery efforts. it is also true that the recovery from the recession was disappointing, it was slow, it took a long time to filter down to hard-working, regular americans, and i think that is a big challenge he has, is to basically convince the american people that this is going to be different, this is going to be a faster recovery and that he has more aggressive or ambitious plans, something new, that will help the economy grow in the way and deliver shared prosperity in the way that americans want it to. host: does he go deeper in the campaign trail about being the tip of the spear on recovery effort? does that mean he worked with congress to pass legislation or he was -- guest: he was in charge of and permitting the stimulus bill in 2009. back when he was vice president, i interviewed him about those efforts. he was proud of a lot of the work he had done but he was also candidly acknowledged when asked
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about it, it had not done enough quickly enough for the middle class. he talked a lot about the middle class, he talks about his roots in scranton and he talks about american workers, he was the head of president obama's middle-class task force that was established upon the start of the administration. tohink he is going to have make that connection that the caller was talking about, how are the policies this time going to be sufficient and good and effective in solving these problems, that would be a challenge for any democrat in this environment, i think it is also a challenge for president trump, he didn't inherent a recession, he inherited a employment -- an economy where on the planet was low and he is going to have to make the case that his policies are sufficient to bring the economy not just back from pretty good to better, but from very bad to good again.
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host: robert is in utah, good morning. caller: good morning. jim if heke to ask , the goodin his book that the g.i. bill did after world war ii to build the middle 1980's, underhe ronald reagan, the g.i. bill was gutted, basically, and how much buildingd that do in our middle-class from that point forward? i will take my answer off the air, thank you. guest: thank you for the question. i talk a little bit about the g.i. bill, which was an building measure of the middle class, for particular americans. the full benefits were not available to everyone who had
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served, black americans did not fully benefit from what it was offering and i think that was a shortcoming that things could have been even better if they had been. a good exampleis of when the government set out to invest in human capital, as politicians like to call it, when it invests in people, as journalists like to call it, then it has a real shot at productivity and economic growth, but most of all, building individual people's american dreams, that can spill over to everyone at lift up the whole country. host: back to 2020 and economic debate, from the rose garden yesterday, president trump going after joe biden on several fronts, but one has to do with what we were talking about, is work during the obama administration and the president pointing out what didn't get
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done back then, here is a minute of the president. pres. trump: america lost nearly 10,000 factories while joe biden was vice president. think of that, 10,000 factories. he wrote something today and he made a statement today that i wrote down, pretty accurate. years,en was here for 47 eight years, the last eight years, not long ago, as vice president, he said, one in five miles of our highways are still import condition. we are doing a good job in highways, but why didn't he fix them? why didn't he fix them? tens of thousands of bridges are in disrepair and on the verge of collapse. it is probably not a right number but we have bridges that should have been fixed. why didn't he fix them? he was there for eight years with president obama, why didn't they fix them? tens of thousands of bridges. this is what he wrote.
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we wanted broadband, high-speed -- why didn't he get it? three years ago, not a long time. he didn't do any of the things, but now he says he is going to be president and as president, he is going to do all of the things that he never do -- he never did anything except make bad decisions, especially on foreign policy. host: president trump yesterday, you have watched joe biden's economic pitches to voters, how does he counter that question of why didn't you fix jobs in factories, why didn't you fix the infrastructure? you had the time in office. there are two issues embedded in the critique there. the first is about manufacturing and it is true, the obama administration inherited an economy that was shutting factory jobs and they did not rebuild what was lost. it is also true that present time, even though he had seen manufacturing job growth, saw it
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in the first two years of his presidency, has not come close to getting back those jobs that were lost. in as, unfortunately, ratcheting down in america over the last several decades where a recession comes, website manufacturing jobs, then there is either little or no rebound in the jobs in the recovery that follows. the president has seen a small rebound but not anything close to what you promised. the second part of the critique is something that joe biden and donald trump have in common, they both wanted to do massive info structure spending while they were in office. the obama administration did some of it with its stimulus bill, but it did not get a second infrastructure bill through, which present obama wanted for much of his time in office and president trump has been promising a large info structure bill, which he has also not gotten through. that has been the case, both of them have dealt with, for part
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of their times in office, a congress that was in part controlled by the opposition party, but also true that both the obama and trump administrations briefly controlled all the levers of fiscal policy in washington and infrastructure never seems to get done. questiont is a great why the obama administration was not able to do more infrastructure in the time that it had, and i know the answer, the answer is would prioritize in terms of legislation, i think that is a great question for president trump and i think it is the same answer, that he had other priorities that came first and there is only so much you can get done even when you control the house and senate. host: only soma because we can take your will try to get one or two more in. ,atrick in california independent. good morning. caller: good morning. mighty ms. patrick -- my name is patrick. i'm very disappointed with the
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media, what is going on over here. i agree with fellow republicans everybody i think turns off the tv's, they are starting to turn to the real news. host: that is patrick in california. the last minute or two we have here, we started by talking about the bull out of economic plans by the joe biden campaign, do you have a timeframe on -- of when that will happen and what will you look for in those next plans? guest: i think we will see them before the summer is out and i think there is a lot of interesting things to watch. the first is how far will joe biden go toward the sweeping, aggressive, larger ticket proposals that some of his rivals had during the primaries? key is adopting more, but we will see. the second is there has been a shift in the way joe biden talks about the economy, he has always talked about structural change
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in the economy, but he is talking more about making investments to promote closing the racial wealth gap and to promote economic justice across racial lines. i think that is a product of the protests we have seen in the last couple months. i will be interested to see how that involves not just in a race plank of the economic platform but throughout his platform and it will be interesting to see, finally, what the president proposes, what new economic ideas he has for a second term, what agenda he has for restarting the economy from the depths of what remains a difficult time for millions of american people and businesses. host: economics and tax reporters, the new york times, his forthcoming book coming out in august, the riches of this land, the untold to story of america's middle class. appreciate your time. guest: thank you so much.


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