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tv   Washington Journal Bob Cusack  CSPAN  September 8, 2022 6:47pm-7:20pm EDT

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--queen elizabeth ii's death and legacy. and the political news of the day. the senior of climate and real estate correspondent for cnbc discusses the state of the u.s. housing market. the california democratic congressman on the democrats fall agenda heading into the midterm election and foreign policy challenges facing the biden administration. watch washington journal come alive at 7:00 eastern friday morning on c-span or on c-span now, our free mobile app. join the discussion with your phone call, facebook comments, text messages and tweet. >> they president biden will speak at the democratic national committee summer meeting heading into the november elections. watch live coverage from maryland's national harbor, beginning at 7:00 p.m. eastern on c-span, c-span now our free
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mobile -- mobile video app or online at host: up next, we are joined by "the hill's" editor-in-chief, thanks for waiting to finish it up its work. guest: thanks for having me on. the house has to do its business. host: you're on this morning to talk about what's ahead in the fall for congress, but i want to start on the midterm elections, so when we went into the summer for the democrats, and it was inflation, gas prices, the president's approval ratings in the tank, as we end the summer, the democrats get a couple of key legislative wins over the summer. they get a couple of wins in elections, including the new york special election, and the president's favoritability ratings go up. do you think that makes any less likely a red wave in terms of the house in the election? guest: yeah, i mean, you have to think that things are getting better for democrats. i mean, really, the last year,
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starting with the u.s. withdrawal in afghanistan, that was, that began a spiral for the president and his party that lasted up until a month ago, the baby infant formula, you mentioned inflation hitting record highs and gas prices, all that kind of stuff. so but then they've had a few wins, and they have some moment momentum. they won a couple of special elections that were deemed bellwethers. i think it makes more of a difference in the senate than the house. certainly the house shouldn't be privately said, hey, we can't be overconfident we're going to win the house, but history does favor republicans flipping the house. but the senate is a different story. republicans are already blaming each other. mitch mcconnell and donald trump going at it like they have over the last year, there's tension between rick scott, who heads the campaign committee, and mitch mcconnell, who openly has
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said that their candidates may not be the best. they have been struggling, and republicans are defend ago lot more seats in the senate, they have to run the table. they have to win key races and win most of them, if not all of them, to take back the senate. it's very interesting times. look pretty cut and dried. i thought three months ago the house was definitely gone, the senate was going to go to the republicans. now it's a different story. host: with the election season ahead, it's always this time of year for congress, the things they have to get done and the things they want to get done. what kind of pressure does this put on the democratic leaders, particularly in the house, to get done, and with chuck schumer in the senate, to get done before the midterm election? guest: some of the pressure was relieved when they passed the inflation reduction act and the message wars have begun on that bill, which was supported by
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democrats and, of course, by all republicans. anyway, i do think that they have a lot of other things that they want to get done, they want to protect gay marriage in the wake of the supreme court decision on abortion. that's something that the question is, can they get to 60, will enough republicans support that legislation. it remains to be seen. i think if they had to vote, they would be voting on it, but they do want to vote on that. there's legislation that would change after the january 6 riot, how the electoral count to verify the vice president cannot overturn a presidential election. that has the support of some democrats and republicans. but bill, it all comes down to senate floor time. the house can move multiple bills in a week. the senate really can only do one or two things at most, and they're focusing on nominations, both in committee and the floor. they take time. why are they focusing on
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nominations? they want to give president biden his team, but also they know nominations could be a lot more difficult if mitch mcconnell is the majority leader, so they don't want to get as -- so they want to get as many nominations done before the election as they can. that's why they have, on the schedule, the senate could be back for two weeks in october. schumer, charles schumer, majority leader, could change his mind on that, because usually in october all members are home campaigning. but in the senate, not every senator is up, so they could come back to do some unfinished work. but you're right, the most important thing is must pass legislation and that means funding the government by october 1. then the question is, what is in that bill other than the government? that's the big question. host: one potential landmine, if you will, or holdups or things that could be attached to the spending bill that could really grind it to a halt? guest: the first one is permitting reform. this is a bill that was looked
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to be promised to joe manchin in supporting the inflation reduction act. if legislation is not supported by environmentalists and certainly a key committee chair on the environment in the house has said he wants to block that bill, and he says, listen, inflation reduction act is in law. this permitting bill, which he opposes, is not in law. that could be a real problem, because progressives could band together and potentially vote it down. it's a problem for leadership. do i think there will be a shut down? no, i don't think it's in anyone's interest on either side. aisle to have a shutdown, but there's going to be drama until they get that bill passed. host: we'd like to hear your calls and comments, bob cusack of "the hill" is with us. 202-748-8000 is the line for democrats. 202-748-8001 for republicans. 202-748-8002 for independents and others.
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what's ahead this fall for the january 6 committee? guest: they want to have at least another hearing. i don't believe they've announced when that hearing will be. now, this was interesting, because before the august recess, there were suggestions from members on that panel that they would be wrapped up by the august recess, but they've had new witnesses, apparently, new information has come to light. so i think they're at least going to have one more. we'll see if it's in primetime again. but that investigation really has to wrap up and will wrap up at the end of this congress, and certainly if republicans, as expected, as they are favored, to win the house this january 6 panel will not exist in the next congress. they know that, and that's why they're looking to wrap up their work in a final report, and we've seen some interesting tension between the january 6 committee and the department of justice and the big question is, of course, will the department
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of justice indict president trump and others in his orbit? clearly, the january 6 commission is pressuring, and i think it's pretty certain that they're going to recommend something along those lines. so i think they want to make a closing argument in the fall when everybody is back from vacation and probably have one last primetime hearing, but we shall see. host: where do things stand on the defense authorization bill? that has passed the house, correct? is there a holdup on the senate side for that? guest: yeah, it's always tough to pass a bill of that legislation in the senate, because of senate rules and procedures. that's another one that's thorny. sometimes they will take other must-pass legislation, like the defense authorization bill and spending bill and potentially wrap it up in one big bill, when there's a will, there's a way to get things done quickly.
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so that's at the top of mind, too, of legislators and leadership's priorities, because that is considered a must-pass bill. but when you get into defense and various policies, amendments that you brought up by one senator, that can also slow down the process, and floor time is so precious in the senate, and it's certainly precious in the senate this fall, because chuck schumer has been very adamant in saying i'm not going to give you a time table, because he's still trying to put the puzzle together. host: one of the lead pieces in "the hill" is by your reporter, max greenwood, seven races that could determine control of the house. as you've seen these races evolve and get being tighter, closer to election day, which ones out there, what are you following the most? guest: i think you watch virginia. i've traveled around virginia, it's my home state, and you have congress woman luria, congress woman spanberger, these are
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democrats who won in tough races, in tough territory for democrats, and certainly they're targeted. along texas, you have a number of contests where you have texas republicans running latino and latina candidates, and republicans are saying, hey, we've got the most minority candidates than we've ever had, and they've made a conscious effort on that, and they think some of these republicans can win, and so that they are going to have a more diverse class of 2023 should they win. the thing is, with democrats, big picture is you've had over 30 of them announce their retirement, and it's really hard for incumbents usually win, and nonincumbents, it's hard to get to congress. any time you
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let's get to colors as well. let's go to melissa on the independent line. good morning. >> they you for taking my call. my question is to mr. cusack of why -- did the hill decide to run certain articles about things and not others? referring to the -- laptop.
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why did you guys choose to not publish the story when it was true. and it is true. and it still does not come out in -- the paper and see anything but it was true. >> we've written about hunter biden as laura -- as far as the laptop that emerged for the election there were a lot of questions about it. it was unclear where it was coming from. and especially after recent events, with -- in 2016 with the email controversy, you want to be responsible with what you publish. we would be perhaps that chairman of the oversight committee james palmer from kentucky. and if the house is split, he told our reporter that hunter biden is going to be a big part of his oversight land. so hunter biden is one that
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could potentially be subpoenaed. the department of justice is investigating hunter biden right now. so i suspect there will be or news in the new year. >> a tear from jared -- on the democrats line. >> high. i am registered democrat and i have a couple of real concerns. and i think it is going to hurt us in the long term. you guys -- and all of these guys that do not want to be -- with the republican candidates. that will be a big stake. it will not look good. -- what ever they afraid of that is concerning to me. the other concern that i have is you have biden. biden clearly is -- he is not 100%. and the fact that you are all hiding it the news media and everything is scary because it has a lot to do with the next election.
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people can see it and they can see it is being hidden. and that it will affect long term. there is more coming out about biden. so, the concern is, even all the relationships with china and all of that -- biden is definitely compromised. >> you want to comment on the report about john fetterman -- and the republican candidate. in the senate race in pennsylvania. >> that race has gotten nasty. oz is behind and the republicans are nervous about it. -- he had major health issues and he says he is recovering from it. oz and federman have gone back and forth over his health and that her man has said it is not appropriate for him to comment on his health. so this is where we are headed. i agree it should be, it usually
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the news that comes out of the debates is significant but does not change the race there are exceptions to that rule. if you're constantly dodging debates, we see that with candidates in the past. that does not look good. i think federman will debate. -- he has not debated yet but we just had labor day and this is when the season gets going. i anticipate to see a debate or debates -- the candidate who is winning. usually does not want debates.
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a big interview we write it up on the we are trying to branch out as you know, there was an article a couple weeks ago that streaming has taken over cable. that does not mean the cable will not be around there is a strong resident obviously but young audiences are embracing streaming. and we have plans for other shows. >> let's hear from marion in roasted georgia on the democrat line. >> high, thank you for taking my call. by the way mr. cusack i read the
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hill every day along a lot of other publications. i love the hill. it is where i quickly get all the news of the world and i she ate it. my comment to you is that -- i hear a lot of times callers calling in and i have to say especially republicans are so angry. and i wanted to just relay a conversation i have with a relative in mind that we all grew up the same way. and we were having a conversation. we have basically the same morals. and brought our children of the same way and everything. we got on the subject of policies he is a big truck supporter and i am obviously a democrat but we still get along great. and i laughed and said, you know, i think you talk to our patriots. do you think that i am a patriot?
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and there was dead silence on the phone. this is an intelligent person who is telling somebody that he loves that i am not a patriot. and he felt it was ok to do that. and it sent chills down my spine. thinking oh my goodness, even in family, they really feel that way. and in my mind, you know how you feel when you think well would they put me in jail if they were in power or something? even though i love him. so, to me, that is why this whole magazine is scary to me. thank you. bye. >> i have heard other stories like this from people whether it is family or friends. you use to not talk about politics on the dinner room table and now you do. politics has gotten more
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polarizing. it was not always -- it has also gotten more violent in recent years. not that there was not violence years ago, we saw january 6 we have seen -- shot on the baseball field. and both thankfully made it through those very difficult situations. but it is a very polarizing time in politics. you've seen a number of presidential candidates say that they will unite the country and i have to say on both sides of the aisle that has not happened. -- it used to be after elections people would say one side yes one side let's go and work for the country. and now that is not the case. it is looking at the next election. you do not see the -- remarks from the losing side. >> your calls and comments are welcome --(202) 748-8000 four
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democrats. (202) 748-8001 four republicans and all others (202) 748-8002 -- it is not only a news outlet but you have -- printed edition going back a number of years and online. you cannot log onto the without seeing an opinion he's there. why is opinion a big part of what you present editorially at the hill? >> yeah, we attract and solicit pieces on both sides of the aisle. whether that's members of congress or former members of congress, members of the administration. we've had obama, and i believe biden write op-eds for us. it's interesting to see what people want to weigh in with. sometimes some of those opinion pieces do quite well, and they're quite insightful. we
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have a team of great editors f. you're going to make a claim, you'll see in our opinion pieces, we link to the proof of that. so we're fact checking these opinion pieces, and i think that makes us more thorough, i would say, than others. and if we don't like a piece, then we don't accept it. so it's not like we take every piece. we actually reject a lot of them. that's an important part of seeing the voices, whether it's a columnist like juan williams on the left, or we have on the right, john fury, who used to be a top communications person on capitol hill. he's also a columnist, along with many, many others. >>let's hear from arnold on the independent line in lafayette, georgia. good morning. >>good morning. yes, i'm just trying to figure out why people are so ignorant of what's going on in our country. the commies had taken over the democrat party. and in the republican party, you have what are called
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rinos. those are commies. back in the 1950's, there was a guy named mccarthy. he said there's commies in our government. well, prior to j.f.k.'s trip to dallas, he gave a short speech, and in that short speech he said there's commies in my party. and they killed him. so since j.f.k., i was a democrat back then, and i started looking and weighing things, and i figured it out. democrats are nothing but commies. >>what do you think that's causing that sort of language on the right, calling people commies or fascists from the left, enter into our political dialogue so prominently these days? >>part of it, we're definitely in election season, even though it never ends, but it certainly ramps up in the summer before an
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election. we've seen divisions in both parties, really. i mean, you've seen bernie sanders is not happy with the inflation reduction act. did he vote for it? yes. but he was very unhappy. really wanted to pass a bill that cost roughly $6 trillion to $10 trillion, then he agreed to $3.5 trillion, and then it kept whittled down because you hear joe manchin. you hear the term rhinos, republicans in name only, and you've seen a number of republicans who have crossed donald trump, especially on impeaching him on the second time. but most of those members, including liz cheney, lost their primary. not all of them. so there's a real battle for the soul of the republican and democratic party. polls show there's a yearning for a third party. i do believe that if we have a rematch, which is a long way to go, of trump versus biden, i think you're going to see a third party emerge, because polls show that most people don't want either one of them to run, and there's concern
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about trump's legal cases and him running, which i fully expect him to run, and whether joe biden runs. he's 80 years old. some people are saying maybe we should turn the page. he'll turn 80 later this year. that's something to watch. but both parties are fighting with one another, and i think that has something to do with it. >>who do you think is in the queue if the likelihood of a republican takeover of the house happens, who's in the queue? who's next in line for democratic leadership? will that leadership at the top change? >>in the house? >>yeah. >>i think nancy pelosi, to get the votes, promised that this would be her last as far as leadership. now, what if they defy the odds and keep the lower chamber? maybe she has a case to say, listen, maybe i should stay on for a couple more years. but i think you got to look at
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someone like congressman jeffries, who is in leadership now. that are questions about steny hoyer and jim clyburn. democrats want to move up. will there be three more positions or will there be a race? will hoyer and clyburn be challenged? i do think there's some up and coming members to watch, like congress king charles iii king charles --congresswoman jayapal. those stories haven't yet emerged. everyone is waiting for the election, but they'll be positioning themselves between now and the election on both sides for leadership contests to see, hey, can i count on your vote if i run for this position? that's a big, big storyline, and that really blows up. that's a big post-election story. it's less of a preelection story. but once they're back for the lame duck session, and remember, there could be a runoff in georgia. the senate could be in the balance at that time. there's a lot going on actually after the election. you can argue there's more going on
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after the election than there is before the election. >>let's hear from gordon next up, kansas city, missouri, republican line. >>thank you for taking my call. i live in kansas city, kansas, but it doesn't matter. mr. cusack, explain to me what joe biden meant during the debate with president trump that the democrats had put together the biggest voter fraud organization anybody had ever heard of. what did he mean by that? thank you. >>i don't remember that line in the debate, but certainly has been something that's been discussed a lot between the parties on voter fraud. but at the same time, if you look at the proof, you look at trump's department of homeland security, the last election was the most secure in history, that's something that's going to be ongoing. and i think that's another element that used to be,
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people used to accept the results of elections and move on. and listen, democrats did it too. they were not happy when gore lost to bush, and there were some protests back then, and, of course, the larger protest, january 6, without a doubt was based upon the belief of people that there was voter fraud and it led to a deadly day. >>let's hear from florida, democrats line, good morning. >>good morning. i'm calling from plant city and i work in a public library, where i work. a couple of weeks ago there were a gentleman in line, he requested a d.v.d. that was only promoted on trump's channel. another lady that was in the line next to him kind of jumped in and says you know they're not going to have
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that here in a public facility. and this is something that they don't want the public to know about, and i guess it was based on voter fraud, so i won't give the title of the item. but i work in a place where people can openly and freely express to me their opinions about their political decisions or choices, and i'm having to stand there and hear it and be offended and not say anything, because i do work in a public forum. so i just hope that we can get back to a place where we can respect each other and not force other opinions on the public. thank you. >>bob cusack, any thoughts? >>i'm a big fan of the first amendment as well. i do think that in the rough discourse of politics over the last decade, there has been some concern. there's been concern about what
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you can say and obviously what politicians say matter, and sometimes they put their foot in their mouth. but i do think that, it's been talked about how some comedians have been gone off. i think it is the first amendment is a great thing, and it has limits, of course, but you can't say anything anywhere, but it that's why it's the first amendment, and i do think that some people have a good point about saying that it has been attacked in recent years. >>back to congress and the potential of a republican takeover. jim jordan told a business group last week, reported that he expects that the republicans to roll out some sort of plan for their agenda. do you have any inkling of what would be in the plan for a potential republican takeover of the u.s.
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house? something like a contract with america from 1994. >>yeah, the house republicans are going to roll that out. some republicans, not so much. mitch mcconnell says this is a midterm referendum basically on joe biden. house republicans are saying, no, we want to lay out what we're going to do if we have. so there's tension between mitch mcconnell and kevin mccarthy, the republican leader. we've been poking around on that. i think the central themes you're going to see in that document is to make the trump tax law permanent under the rules that passed that legislation. they're going to have to renew it, and there are certain parts that are expiring. i think one of the big questions is, are they going to try to repeal obamacare? that's been an ongoing fight. back in the early days of the obama administration, it's not stopped. now, of course, they're not going to be able to repeal obamacare, even if they have the house and the senate, because joe biden would veto it. but that doesn't mean that the house republicans, especially incoming
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class, at least some of them are going to want votes and say, i want to get rid of that. but this is going to be a broad, broad plan, and we haven't seen anything leak out yet, but you're going to see something this fall that i think is going to be -- well, certainly being polished. they have to make sure it's not controversial. rick scott laid out an agenda, senate republican campaign chair, mitch mcconnell did not like that agenda and made clear it was not his agenda. agendas can get a little tricky. >>what about the conflict between rick scott and mitch mcconnell? >>as the republican leader in the senate, mitch mcconnell has always had a big role in the campaign arm it's not like he doesn't know, and rick scott, a lot of people thinking he might run for president in 2024, there's concern that it's been about scott as opposed to winning the senate. but at the
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same time, he was picked, and he has the right to run the committee as he wants. usually there's more coordination, let's say, between mitch mcconnell and rick scott. certainly that has has led to tension between the two men, and that is just something you don't see very often, at least out in the open. sometimes it happens between a campaign chair, and sometimes the campaign chair is fired. it's not going to come to that, but it's rare for this tension to surface so publicly. >>a call or for more before we let you go. new york is next, matthew on the democrats line. >>good morning, gentlemen. >>good morning. >>quick question. was joe biden fairly and duly elected as president of these united states? >>yes.


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