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tv   The Story With Martha Mac Callum  FOX News  October 1, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT

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will -- 700,000 -- the president paused and held memorial, how does he intend to mark this next terrible mile stone and what >> the president said many times, he feels incredible responsibility for everything happening in the country, including our fight and battle with covid-19. that's why he is focused on this. his number 1 priority since the first day he came into office. i note that we saved according to outside experts tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of lives because of the actions his administration took including at this point we're 77, 78% of the public having received one vaccine. obviously we'll take a moment to pause when we hit 700,000 that is a striking horrifying number of lives lost to a pandemic.
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people that lost loved ones, parents, grandparents, children and many cases. in terms of what the president will do, we'll have to get back to you when we have more on that. go ahead. >> is it the president's way of saying enough is enough? >> he's going to make the case for why. it's important that everybody come together and move forward on both pieces of legislation to deliver for the american people. i don't think the president will say enough is enough. that's not his vernacular. he feels it's important now to go directly, go to the hill, go to the democratic caucus and make his case correctly and answer questions and talk about how we can work together to make the lives of the american people better. >> seems to be a lack of trust. progressives are looking for assurances that there's a path forward that negotiations will
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continue on the reconciliation bill. how do you govern if there's a lack of trust among democrats? >> i don't know that i would put it in that terminology, a lack of trust. i'll leave to it members of congress to describe how feel about each other. there's views and opinions in the democratic caucus. that's a healthy part of having a party a healthy part of having a democracy. what we know is the president has worked with members of this caucus to get the american rescue plan done, to move his agenda forward to this point and that when we're talking about this stage in the process, a pivotal stage in the process, we're litigating details, having debates about key components of two historic bills that will change the lives of millions of people, it's healthy to have discussions. healthy to push and healthy to be advocating for your point of view. there's a misunderstanding of how democracy and policy making
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works when you suggest otherwise. >> is the president's goal still to end fossil fuel subsidies? >> that's his goal, yes. >> the president spent most of his week doing negotiating behind the scenes here at the white house and meetings and on the phone. today he's making a public trip to the halls of congress. is this a make or break moment? >> this is a moment where he feels it's exactly the right time to go to the caucus and make a case why it's important to work together to get this agenda done. he wants to go back to the substance and talk about how the components of each of these packages will make a difference in people's lives. he wants an engagement as you can note, he's had a lot of people come to the white house. he loves the in-person engagement. when there's a vote, when there will be a deal, there's a lot of
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work going on behind the scenes about that. this is just his own effort to make his case directly to the caucus. >> is he trying to send a message by literally meeting members where they are? >> what message would that be? >> that's my question. >> okay. i think wasn't sure what you were asking. look, he was in the senate for 36 years. he's making clear that if they partner together, if we work together, we can get this done for the american people. going to their caucus -- it's something that he did in the senate. it's not unheard of. something that presidents have done in the past. as i said earlier, these are his proposals, this is something that he passionately believes in. both pieces of legislation. it's right for him to make the case for both. >> one last one. during most of the day yesterday, it was clear the votes were not there for this
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infrastructure bill. we saw white house officials and the president working throughout the day to cobble together the votes to pass the legislation last night only to see the inevitable happen with the speaker delaying the vote. so what in the president's view did that accomplish and was it worth it to push for the bill to be passed on that arbitrary timeline? >> if the speaker were standing here -- i wish she was -- she would tell you it wasn't inevitable. when you legislate and working with a small margin, which she is in congress to get something done that titlelines, self-imposed deadlines can help crystallize for people and help you make problem. we think it did that. as we said in a statement last night, we're not there yet. we're still working toward it. that remains the case today. >> yeah, jen. thanks. what more can you tell us about the trips next week -- >> martha: we'll keep a close ear on this news conference and
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briefing from the white house obviously. a story that is moving quickly. democrats are battling over who is in charge, which part of the party is in charge, who is going to blink first on this move to transform the u.s. economy. >> we're laser focused on trying to make sure that we establish universal pre-k, universe sal healthcare. >> there's no negotiations on the table. >> when has speaker pelosi failed on a legislative initiative that she and a democratic president strongly support? >> very few have seen the president in the nine months and he should come to a caucus. >> martha: so that worked after that last criticism, the criticism is he's been too passive. you've heard that in the press
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briefing today as well. now movements on that. we're waiting for the president. he's about to move from the white house over to capitol hill any minute to try to do some wrestling with his former colleagues and with some of the new members who are some of the more problematic figures in this wrestling match that's going on right now. we have neil cavuto joining us to watch all of this unfold on this friday afternoon. first we want to go to congressman kevin brady who is a top republican on the house ways and means committee which has jurisdiction over many of the program that we're talking about like social security, medicare, unemployment, taxes. all of that. congressman brady, great to have you with us today. as you listen to that press briefing with us and you wait for the president to arrive on capitol hill, what do you think happens next? >> yeah, good to see you, martha. i think everyone knows what's going on here. the speaker has invited the president to try to join her in
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strong arming democrats in to accepting some version of that $3.5 trillion of tax hikes and spending. i predict he will fail. the infrastructure bill is being held hostage to that. if i were one of the few moderate democrats in the house, i'd be asking the president three things. one, if we're supposed to be taxing the wealthy and big corporations, why are we giving them so many tax breaks and hand-outs in this bill. secondly, why are we crippling small businesses with about five didn't tax hikes and thirdly, with inflation on track to be the highest in four decades, 40 years, won't all of this government spending make it worse for families. unfortunately the president can't answer any of those. >> martha: it's interesting, congressman. the way you lay that out and what you mentioned in terms of small businesses having five new
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rounds of taxes in this bill, if a version of it passes. and the havoc that that would wreak on so many people that fall below the 400,000 threshold because they're involved in small businesses and pass-through income. i wouldn'ter if it wouldn't be a favor to the president when he doesn't have to deal with that when election time comes around. >> i think you're on target. the president will lose one way or the other. because this whole package collapses because of the infighting among democrats or this house and his agenda collapses next november when the american public gives the house back, maybe the senate back to the republicans as well. one way or the other, this agenda is going to end. right now i will tell you, the test in washington is not about speaker pelosi's leadership. it's about whether there are any moderate democrats left in the house that will stand up for their local small businesses and
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for american jobs which as you know will likely be shifted overseas when this president races our business rates to the highest among the highest in the world. it's crippling. we're trying to get our businesses worked out of this pandemic, get them back on their feet. help them hire more. this just crushes them at the worst possible time. >> the progressives have a lot of power right now. bernie sanders and alexandria ocasio-cortez, they're pulling the weight of the party to prevent this infrastructure bill, which they're probably could be enough republicans to pass potentially. so this is representative john yarmouth of kentucky. this is how he sees the ability of congress to have the power of the purse. listen to this. >> it's not a question of what we can afford. the federal government can
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afford anything that it feels it needs to do. we have an opposition party, the republican party, that doesn't think the federal government has any obligation to do anything about providing child care, early childhood education, paid family and medical leave, any of the things that are in the build back better act. >> martha: they've got ten through 5.4 -- senator mansion brought this up yesterday -- the $5.4 trillion since march. at what point is it enough? we're already in the works on 5.4 trillion in spending since march. >> yeah. that claim is nonsense respectfully. the truth is, government has all the money it needs. it just doesn't have all the money that they want. they want that from you as taxpayers. the truth is we're not in that pandemic emergency anymore.
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that spending needs to end. we need to get back to normal in our budget as well. the focus, defeating the virus and the rebuilding this economy, there's nothing in all of this $3.5 trillion to do either. even in the smallest sense. so look, this is -- what worries me is these are crippling tax hikes that we think will destroy about three million u.s. jobs, going to drive prices up and expand welfare in a way that we're going to hook -- democrats will hook a new generation of americans on government dependen dependency. it's bad for these and the businesses for workers that can't find what they need. >> martha: let me ask you one more with regard to the infrastructure bill. i think democrats will find a way to thread this needle, whether today or over the weekend. they have to say that they got something here. the infrastructure bill, you
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would be a no on that infrastructure bill, i believe. and tell me if that is correct. do you agree, do you think there's ten house republicans that would vote in favor of the infrastructure bill? >> you know, i don't know how many house republicans would vote yes. i think it's fairly limited. mainly because in the house these are not separate. the tax and spending bill is tied to the infrastructure bill. and i'm convinced the infrastructure bill goes forward, so will the tax and spending bill here. i'm also convinced that if moderate democrats say wait, like joe manchin, we're not going to support all of these taxes and all of this spending and that goes down. then i'm convinced they'll have to bring infrastructure forward. so look, for republicans, we support roads and bridges. we don't support roads and taxes.
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in the house, that's what this vote is. >> martha: okay. congressman brady, thank you. good to have you with us. >> good to see you. >> martha: good to see you too, sir. we're waiting as we see in the bottom part of the screen, a gorgeous day on capitol hill on this friday afternoon. great day for a drive from the white house over to the hill. that's exactly what the president has decided to do. he's been criticized in recent days for playing too much of a back seat role on this. he's happy to listen and people come in. joe manchin, i thought this was an interesting comment, he said the president when he met with him said look, you can vote your conscious on this. let's bring in neil cavuto, host of "your world" and "cavuto coast to coast" on the fox business channel what a nice treat to have you with us as you get ready to take over at 4:00. what is going through your mind as you listen to the press
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conference at the white house and what congressman brady had to say? >> well, i'm just kind of surprised by the late engagements on the part of the president. if you want something as president, you work your hiney off for it. this is the capitol hill, getting people to the white house is tradition among those that try to pitch bipartisanship and the effort to get you what you really want. john kennedy in the early 60s when he was pushing for tax cuts that were more of an effort to his own party than republicans but he worked them both. i'm thinking of ronald reagan who had to win over skeptical ronald reagans. he was making trips to the hill to get conservative democrats, the bowevils to go his way.
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presidents that work something work it hard. i'm reminded of the student in college studies from the test the night before and realizing it's a big exam. why didn't i prepare for that. he's not prepared and it's clear. >> martha: really interesting examples. provides a lot of context for how these things have worked in the past. i was also thinking about the obama healthcare deal, which vice president biden was very involved in. bart stupak was the democrat hold out. he was not happy with the abortion language in some of the -- what would be provided for under the terms of obamacare. it really looked, neil, you covered it, i covered it as if he was never going to budge. that's the kind of thing that is in the back of my mind. ultimately he did. they need a win here desperately. they've had a very tough run
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with covid and afghanistan and inflation and the border crisis. you remember vice president biden was very involved in that. we all know what he called it, a big blank deal. >> they knew the math then, martha. they knew it was going to be only democrats voting nor the affordable care act but they had wider margins in those days. now they don't have that liberty right now. that is the big question with this infrastructure-only vote whether it comes to pass. there could be a quite a few progressives that opt out of this entirely. we just don't know how many. they might make up for some of them by getting some republican votes. we don't know. that is the one that joe biden really wants. because they got to put up a w. they have to put up something that shows something has come of all of this back and forth. that is the one that might potentially have the votes.
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if they keep delaying it and if they keep sort of trying to pass -- pacify each side until the $3.5 deal, they have -- the senate doesn't have to vote on this as much as we get a frame work going on. i don't know whether that is a sign that they're showing some flexibility, i'm probably reading too much into that. it's very clear at this stage that, you know, if this keeps getting pushed off, the one that is bipartisan, the package that has widespread public support could go down in flames because of grudges that have prevented an easy vote to see what could be an easy and important win nor the president. both go down in flames. not good for him or the party. >> martha: yeah.
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a great point. they really got hamstrung by progressives to put the two bills together and not just deal with infrastructure. i keep going back to the debates, neil. i remember at one point now president biden was pressed on being too liberal. are you progressive. are you catering the progressive wing of the party. he said no, i'm the nominee. i'm the party now. that kind of decisiveness -- no, i'm the party, i'm a moderate democrat, which is what he was arguing in that moment. i don't know -- maybe we're about to hear that voice or the members of the house will hear it. you can imagine a scenario where joe biden said i worked across the aisle my whole career, progressives, i understand you're not with me on it but i'm going to find ten republicans to vote with me to the american people, to appeal to the american people to sort of find that middle ground as well feels like an incredibly divided
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country and certainly washington. i don't know. maybe some people find it refreshing. >> neil: you have to have skin in the game. i'm old fashioned this way. presidents that want something work at it. they do the kind of things that maybe we say are passe today. personal. get in their face. what can i do to make this happen. lyndon johnson was famous for that. we have to get back to the basics here, that maybe this president is forgetting that if he's saying that i'm different, i beat bernie sanders, i'm not echoing or doing the things that bernie sanders wants when in fact right now it does appear that it is a bernie sanders-led effort, these got to act like it. presidents have that bull horn and his chance to really leverage that. i'm a huge believer in personal equity in something. the little thing i try to do is personally invite guests to my
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show. sometimes they return the letter ripped up in a million pieces but my point is, i think you got to make a connection. i don't think the same applies to the leader of the free world. the idea of sweat equity manneders and the president has been standing back and letting others speak for him. if he believes the infrastructure package is important, dammit, make sure you're conveying it's important and get to the legislators and you make your pitch. i think they just got to get to that active role here that the president has refused to do. maybe for valid reasons. he was trusting that this could be done without him. but obviously can't. if he can't close the deal and it fails, it's going to be on him. it's not going to be on anyone else. >> martha: i'm just -- i want to point out to our viewers and i want to apologize for the camera is all over the place.
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it's not a photographer's fault. all of these members of the house are moving to come back into the capitol. these are the tunnels that we all have traversed. these folks traverse all the time under the capitol building as they're moving in place as they get ready for this meeting. as they go through the business of the day, the cameras are trying to capture the looks on the faces as they go by. everybody is masked which makes it more difficult than usual. to try to get a read on where this is going. this is dramatic. it's a very dramatic moment. in is the agenda of president biden. there's in notion, neil -- i'm going to chad pergram in just a moment. chad will tell us where this is right now. just in terms of the philosophy and the goal of the biden administration, this tremendous outlay of money. as he puts it, the
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transformation of the u.s. economy that is at stake here, neil. the larger version hoff this bill -- nobody knows which elements would survive in a smaller version. we haven't been told any of that. >> neil: what is interesting about it, too and may be my age, but when i heard the 1.5 trillion figure that senator manchin had thrown out there was insulting, that only 1.5 trillion, i can remember when that i was the entire budget of the united states. i can remember when ronald reagan assumed office, that was about our total debt. now it's close to $30 trillion. so perspective is everything here. says everything you need to know about our times where committing yourself to $1.5 trillion in the case of joe manchin if this passes has supported $5 trillion in added spending and he's looked upon as a corrupt figure in the party and should be punished because he's saying, you know, incredible things against uber spending.
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that says all you need to know. a $1.5 trillion offer, which used to be the size of the u.s. budget, the whole thing, that tells you where we are. that tells you that the only difference here is how insultingly deep in to debt you want to go without paying for it. that will be the final chapter on this no matter where it goes. >> you'd heard congressman yarmouth. it's just money. we have as much as we want in the u.s. government. that's an amazing statement. there was a time that 0 was -- maybe it is. that is a real head scratcher for a lot of folks. i would point out that we have to have -- the government has taken in more taxes in the current fiscal year than in the history of the united states government. so it's not that we're desperate for money as a government. there's no one that discusses the possibility that maybe we
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need to cut spending anywhere. it's also just a fact, this isn't an opinion, once these opinions go into place, they don't go away. they get more expensive over time. i hope you hang out with us. we're waiting for president biden. chad pergram gets the ins and outs of what everybody is saying. hi, chad. >> it's interesting to watch these members file in. this is a room in the basement of the capitol. it's called hc 5, this is where the democratic caucus has its meetings. this is the biggest meeting since biden came up several months ago. this is a high profile meeting. president biden is here. he's trying to salvage his agenda. that's why the president heads to capitol hill here in the next couple minutes to talk to house democrats. if the house had the votes to pass the bill, they would have voted by news.
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nancy pelosi got rolled by the left for now. >> you didn't believe me but i kept saying we wouldn't have a vote. i kept telling her we didn't have the votes. the speaker has been a great champion for this agenda. she's been pushing this agenda. >> liberals are winners now, but they took a hostage. the infrastructure bill. so far they're willing to detonate the entire biden agenda unless they get what they want. if there's a deal, progressives likely score a lot less in social spending. a loser for now is bipartisanship. moderate democrats and some republicans pushed for the infrastructure bill but reluctant to vote for a big social spending plan that they don't like. >> let's just remember, we're at zero until we pass something. it needs more time. obviously we haven't reached a point where we're agreeing. not necessarily the top line number, we need agree what the programs are and what we pay for and how we're going to pay for
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them. >> moderates may get a lower number on social spending. nancy pelosi didn't know about the agreement between chuck schumer and joe manchin. manchin wanted $1.5 trillion in social spending. martha? >> martha: thanks, chad. neil is with us as well for a couple more minutes, host of "your world." he's going to head out to prepare for that. neil, it's so interesting. the progressive, the strength of the progressives in negotiating here. it's no secret that many of them would like to see nancy pelosi in that position anymore. would like to see a different democrat party. that's part of what they're doing here. they're standing their grand, they feel pretty confident in their own districts, standing in a ground that won't hurt them politically. they're playing a very serious game of chicken here and there will be a winner and there will
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be a loser. >> neil: it could be them. think about it. if they are seeking the excellent and risk settling for the good, you're burnt either way. the fact of the matter is, time is wasting. if they get what they want, better half than know loaf. so if your a progressive, you said we never thought we would get this and now at a minimum we have $1.5 trillion, maybe two trillion. that's serious change. people minimize that. it's a lot of money. this, of course, racing at the same time, you know, with our debt ceiling and whether we'll be able to raise that all the more before october 18th at which point we're told we technically are out of money. out of options and out of luck. i don't buy the date itself, but we're close to it. this is occurring in an environment where interest rates a backing up. earlier this week we found out
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that 30 year mortgages are over 3%. that's still low. but as the economy improves, sputtering around all, that adds on to the cost of our debt. that is the one thing they have to be cognizant of. if you want to ram this through and you don't care about the debt, you might as well do it for the time being you have the opportunity to do it. if they don't and they want to re-visit this later and not saying that it's wise to re-visit the size of this now, it gets more expensive. we are looking at debt as this plan stands now that could be north of $45 trillion from the roughly $28 trillion that we're at now in ten years. that's a best case scenario that doesn't even take into account interest rates backing up prohibitively as they will.
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>> martha: that's something. neil, thank you very much for pointing that out. look forward to seeing you in about a half an hour from now. thanks, neil. good to have you. >> neil: thanks for having me. >> martha: congressman michael waltz is with us from florida as the democrats gather. congressman, what are you thinking this afternoon as president biden we understand is about to make his way to the hill? >> well, this has just been a massive overreach on the progressive's part from the beginning. this is a massive bill, the biggest expansion of our entitlement and welfare state since l.b.j., since f.d.r. a combination of both. yet both of those presidents had massive super majorities and we have a split house and a split senate. yet they went for the home run
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anyway. now the chickens are coming home to roost. we've watched on the sidelines because no republicans were invited into any of these negotiations in the house. we've watched spoker pelosi talk out of both sides of her mouth, make promises to progressives, make promises to moderates, get pinned down on a deadline on the infrastructure bill and now, the chickens are coming home to roost. i have to tell you, you know, the neil's point, just the interest on our debt now is approaching the size of our entire defense budget. this is such a massive load on future generations. i look at it from a national security standpoint. the chinese theory of victory is not world war 3. the theory of victory is the united states imploding economically and no longer being able the afford to be the nation's super power or be the
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world's super power. that's what historically that's what we're on the cusp of doing right now. >> martha: yeah. you know, it just make me think about covid and this virus and about the origins of the virus and the work going to figure out what was going on in china when it was released and you look on top of that, the deaths from fentanyl that we talked about last night. 100,000 on top of the nearly 700,000 covid deaths. you think about the economic undermining of the united states of america as a result of these kinds of factors. you wonder what is going through their mind as they look at the idea of spending this kind of money. they're probably -- i mean, i would imagine -- >> yeah, they're putting the country in a ferrari and driving it off of a cliff. right off of the fiscal cliff. you know, manchin said it best
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actually. just yesterday, he said we can't afford -- we can't afford the medicare, the medicaid and social security that we currently have. the current budget scoring has that going upside-down in five years and going insolvent. they're looking at doubling and tripling the amount and adding on top of it. it's just -- it defies any kind of common sense. >> martha: you're right. any other organization would have to prove that they were handling those programs efficiently in order to double the size of them or triple the size of them to add even more of these programs that will go bankrupt in a quick order. thanks, congressman. great to have you with us today. thank you. >> thank you, martha. >> martha: so we got breaking news from our correspondent at the white house, jacqui heinrich. just out of the briefing room joining us now. we're looking at the lower bug. soon biden heads to capitol
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hill. what can you tell us? >> the pool is still holding in vans. he's not on the move yet. that meeting with the president and the democratic caucus is expected really any moment after he gets out of here. it's being viewed by democrats in congress as a positive indicator that potentially the votes are coming together for this bipartisan infrastructure bill. congressman dean philips told me that it's illuminating because the president doesn't come to a caucus meeting to make a pitch. they come to seal the deal. it feels close. speaker pelosi has been privately trying to gauge how many votes she has for this bipartisan bill to determine if she wants to bring it to the floor. pelosi doesn't like to bring a vote if it's going to fail. progressives have been vowing that they would vote it down unless the reconciliation package came with it. they were not happy with just an agreement. not just a frame work. they were saying that they
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wanted text and a vote on it. congress woman alexandria ocasio-cortez said that this morning. pelosi is working this in to her calculus, figuring out if there's enough democrats to get this across the line, are there any republicans that will also support it and what that calculation looks like. >> can you answer a few questions? >> i have a very important call. i'll come back. >> so again, a significant part of this effort to find a path forward as the president's appearance on the hill. this week white house aides were trying to get manchin and senate erma -- senator sinema to agree to the package. senator jayapal said the president's meeting coming up today on the hill wouldn't make a difference in how the
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progressives would vote. >> did the president way too long to get seriously involved in these discussions? this is happening so late that speaker pelosi is using a legislative trick to pretend that it's still thursday on the hill. >> jacqui, i'd say anyone that has been through a legislative fight before or covered it on the hill knows that the negotiations and the deal making always happens at the end. >> so meantime, committee chairman peter defazio confirms that the house is putting together an extension of the short term -- of the baseline funding for the infrastructure bill. it would extend it because the bipartisan bill hasn't come up for a vote. when that funding expires, it needs to be renewed every five years. then you have furloughs, 3700 department of transportation employees that are furloughed until an extension happens. we're waiting to see which
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course the house takes later on this afternoon after a meeting with the president. martha? >> thank you very much. we just saw some motorcycles pulling in to the archway -- we're on the north side of the capitol there as we wait for the president to be in route. jacqui says the pool is still in the vans. they've not left yet. we'll keep a close eye on that. we want to catch that when it gets in motion. i want to bring in liz peek and also steve hilton, host of "the next revolution." clearly there's a revolution part of this deal that many mostly progressives would love to see in terms of the change of the way that the american economy functions, a much larger government, a government that takes care of people from cradle to grave.
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sounds like a cliche'ed statement. liz, this involves day care where all taxpayers would cover the cost of day care for everyone, for all of their neighbors and everyone else regardless of whether or not they have children themselves and where people can take 12 weeks off every year if the need arises every year for family leave and paid $1,000 a week for that family leave regardless of how much they make. your thoughts, liz on this transformative proposal and where it stands now. >> well, obviously it's in trouble. thank heavens it is. i think that joe manchin really was right. we have large entitlements programs in this country already, medicare and social securities, both of which are in financial trouble. it offends me that they're willing to go and create entire new entitlement programs worth trillions before even fixing the ones that we have. we don't even have ahead of
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social security right now because biden fired the fellow that was running it. these people are not serious. the entitlements that they want to bring on are very bad for our country. let's take family leave. this is something that private companies, over half of private companies already offer. that is on the upswing. we have a very tight labor market right now. companies are competing for workers. this is one of the ways that they're doing it. they're improving the benefits that they're offering people. why should the federal government, why should taxpayers underwrite what corporations are already trying to do in order to attract workers? it doesn't make any sense. it won't benefit the working poor, which democrats claim. it will benefit people that can afford to take time off. that's what has happened in places like california where they have similar programs. it's really not well-thought
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out. perhaps its well intended but it's a mistake. >> martha: so steve, liz makes a great point. when you look at these programs, a lot of companies especially now, companies across the country need workers. so workers are in the cat bird seat. they can make requests. they can't say oh, i'd like to work from home, i would like to work from california. so why at this moment would we be taking over what would naturally incentivize them to provide extra benefits for employees and taking that burden off of then? we're going to make them pay for it first but make them pay it back. >> exactly. that's the sort of central democratic idea with all of this stuff. they keep saying that we're going to cut taxes for working americans. what that means is instead of cutting their taxes, they're going to raise their taxes, give some of it back in welfare
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payments and call it a tax cut. it's ridiculous. if you look at these specific programs, putting the burdens on businesses, particularly small businesses not just through the programs and the bureaucracy but the tax increases. there's a deeper point as well. i'm a new american citizen. perhaps i have too much reverence for the constitution, but let's look at the constitutionality of this. you have something in the constitution called the tenth amendment, which dictates that things that are not specified in the constitution are the preserve of the state's respectively or the people. we may think family leave is a good idea or child care is a good idea or home health or whatever. should it be done by the federal government in washington? this is a massive centralization of power in washington that really should belong at the state level, the local level. they want to turn america into a virgin of the e.u., which is what the british wanted to get
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out of with brexit. too much centralization of power there. that is an aspect of this that we have to focus on. it's not american to centralize so much power over daily life in washington d.c. >> martha: it's a great point. that's what is meant, liz, by transforming the economy. it would. these ideas that are proposed would. it's the goal of people that are in favor of these would make us look like the u.k., more like france. you look at what has happened to the economies of those once great, great nations and it has been a negative impact on their -- the success of their economy and thereby the success of their individuals. >> that's exactly right. those high taxes have stunted the growth. i was thinking the other day, martha, remember how absolutely horrified everybody was about brexit because oh, my gosh, all of the elites knew this would be a terrible thing.
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the u.k. getting out of the e.u. what has happened? the u.k. is doing very well, thank you. they're concluding their own trade agreements, getting rid of the red tape and taxes and fines and fees that were imposed by the e.u. that is not the model that we should be looking at. the e.u. has lower birth rates. one of the arguments for things like paid leave is that we need to increase our birth rate. ours is doing okay compared to the e.u. and also women at work. the unemployment rate for women is lower than it is for men. i don't understand the argument here. again, what also is strange to me is joe biden is a big labor guy. unions are spending a fortune to promote this reconciliation bill. unions are the ones that should be bringing things like paid leave to companies and saying, you know, we want this and going back to workers and say look
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what we did for you. i don't understand why they want to government taking responsibility and credit for those kinds of benefits. that seems really antithetical to their desire to build membership ranks. >> martha: great point. we're waiting for the president to leave the white house and make his way to capitol hill. a lot of pressure on him over the past few days. he's in route, i'm told. a lot of pressure on him to get more involved. steve, a broader look at the biden presidency. what was anticipated and what the reality is in terms of his personal involvement. it goes to the heart of what i said, i'll all falling apart. i've always had this central critique of biden based on my experience working in politics and government. the politicians that do badly in the end are the machine politicians that don't believe in anything. they don't have principles or a
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strong vision of what they want to achieve. biden has done whatever is necessary to climb the ladder and he will go with wherever the power is in his party. what that means is that when there's something to get done like this, he doesn't really care. he wants a win. he doesn't have a strong view. bernie sanders does. the moderates do. bide den is just trying to get something done. if you look at afghanistan. if you look at the border. look at these crises that are starting to envelop the administration. and when there's a crisis, they don't know how to reresponsibilitied. probably unfortunately going to see more of this with biden in charge and kamala harris is no better because she's the same kind of same politician. >> martha: stand by, if you would. liz peek, steve hilton, great to have you with us as we wait for the president to arrive on capitol hill. you can see everybody standing
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by with their phones and notebooks ready for this moment. he's going to speak to the democrat caucus. who knows if maybe he has some awareness of a deal that is in the works here. i want to bring in chris wallace, that is watching this along with us. anchor of "fox news sunday." good to have you with us. we await the president. your thoughts on where this stands right now. >> this is a pretty interesting moment. the fact that the president has decided now finally, he's had a lot of meetings in the white house but finally he's going to come to the hill and meet with the house democratic caucus, a divided caucus. it's a risk for him. sometimes presidents come up and they meet with the members of their own party and they come up with nothing. generally speaking, you do expect them to close to deal. i don't know whether he will -- that this is cooked in the books and he knows that he has a deal and he knows what the respect of this meeting will be.
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i have to say so far it's not looked that way. it's looked like this is a democrative caucus that is sharply divided with the moderates and the progressives. it's so interesting because joe biden campaigned and won as a centrist. he ran very much to the center as compared to people much further to the left like bernie sanders and elizabeth warren and the democratic presidential race. but yesterday he's been governing and particularly in this domestic agenda much more in the sanders and warren manner because he's talking about huge spending, 3.5 trillion in social spending in addition to the 1. 2 trillion in hard infrastructure in addition to the $1.9 trillion that was already passed in the american rescue plan. that adds up to a lot of money. certainly more than i think a lot of people expected when they voted for joe biden and the
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primaries and in the election. >> martha: it's a mind boggling amount of money. impossible to wrap your head around how much we're talking about here in terms of spending programs that would be entrenched. that's the way it works. once you have a program that pays for everybody's day care, child care, it's very difficult -- who will be the politician that will run against pulling that back. it doesn't happen. the motorcades have pulled up at the capitol. chris, it's the progressives that have had more pull with this president as you just said than anybody anticipated when this election was over, especially given the margins in the house and senate. >> that's right. what has struck me, martha, biden didn't talk as a transformative president. he was campaigning as he was not donald trump. since he's become president, he's talked much more in
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transformative terms like f.d.r., like lyndon johnson with the great society and the new deal. the problem is he doesn't have roosevelt or l.b.j. majorities. a three-vote margin in the house and a zero vote margin in the house and yet trying to pass sweeping huge spending. that's a lot harder to do when you have literally no vote margin. you can't lose a single vote in the senate and three in the house. as a result, you have in the house progressives saying, you know, we're not going for this. they can block the infrastructure bill and then in the senate you have people like joe manchin and krysten sinema that can block -- you can see the president and speaker pelosi. >> we're catching a glimpse of him. stand by. obviously a big moment. nancy pelosi walking side by
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side president biden. we saw them have a moment together at the baseball game. they have a lot at stake. nancy pelosi has a reputation for being able to pull these things together at the last minute. this is -- the pressure is on as they move into the room here. there's james clyburn from south carolina who had a big role in helping security the nomination nor president biden. he was able to south carolina and got a win. if it wasn't for that, i doubt we would be looking at this picture right now, chris. as i mentioned before, i remember president biden saying in those debates, you know, when pressed on how progressive he would be, he said, you know, i'm the leader of the party. i am the standard bearer of the democratic party. it's going to way i want it to go. he's about to have a big test for that. >> that's right. in fact, when donald trump was talking about him being pushed around by the bernie sanders wing, his comeback was to say i
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beat bernie sanders. it's very interesting to watch now. bernie sanders wanted $6 trillion. he came down to 3. 5 trillion. now mansion wants 1.5 trillion. so nancy pelosi is trying to work out something that is somewhere in the neighborhood of around 2 trillion. still an enormous amount of money when you say couple down from 3 1/2 to 2 trillion. it's still a lot of money. and then the question becomes will the progressives vote for the infrastructure bill with the promise of a frame work or do they have to wait to see a vote, a passage of the social spending bill in the senate. if that will happen, we're talking days or weeks before that. kyrsten sinema is not even in washington. she's in phoenix. there's not been a word written on the legislative language for reconciliation in the senate. we're talking ant a bill. i'm sure it thousands of pages. that will take awhile to write. that would be a setback for joe
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biden, not necessarily fatal but a real setback be he can't get a deal with the progressive saying okay, with the promise of this frame work and your assurance, we'll pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill. if they say we have to see legislative language passed in the senate, we're going to be well into october before that happens, if it happens. >> martha: it's interesting to look at this $2 trillion number and whether or not it becomes a magic number that can put to rest progressives dismissiveness of joe manchin's 1.5. alexandria ocasio-cortez said we don't want a frame work. we want a vote. we want to vote on that bill before we entertain the idea of voting on the infrastructure bill. so do you sense that there is any progressive movement towards
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satisfaction at that $2 trillion number? >> the frame work of a vote, the promise of a vote, congressman jayapal is the head although aoc gets the press of the congressional progressive caucus, she's first said no, we ned a vote. she backed off and said maybe we don't need a vote. that's one of the runs that joe biden is up there. look, if we give you this number and we promise you and i put my name behind it, nancy pelosi puts her name behind it, can we pass the infrastructure bill, i think it's a very open question if that's what happens today, whether the progressives will say yes or say no. honestly that's not enough. we have to have a vote in the senate in which case it gets kicked down the road a long time. you know, every day -- time is never the friend of legislation. every day you have to delay so another day for things to crop up that keep legislation from being passed.
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>> martha: chris, when you look at the biden presidency, eight months in, obviously it's been a very rough several weeks between the border and afghanistan and a larger background of inflation that has put a lot of pressure on americans as they go to buy the things that they need. what is your assessment of this presidency so far from a political perspective. he needs to be successful to maintain or do well in 2022. >> yeah, he's in some trouble. i very much dislike the idea oh, this is curtains for the presidency. any president has a lot of power and a lot of things come up and the narrative can flip. i think washington is too soon to rush to firm conclusions about what is happening. this has been a very bad month for the president. on some of the points that he talked about as being his strengths, that he was a foreign policy expert.
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the execution of our pull-out from afghanistan put the lie to that. one of the things he talked about is he spent the better part of a half century on capitol hill. he's a deal maker. if he's struggling with just democrats, he's not talking about persuading republicans here. if he's struggling to persuade democrats to pass his domestic agenda and he fails to do that, that contradicts that argument. a lot of things can happen between now and november. a lot of things can happen between now and next week. but i think he desperately needs a win. one of the things i never understood is when this bill passed with 18 or 19 republican senators supporting it, bipartisan -- the one truly bipartisan effort in the senate back a couple months ago, why didn't they rush it through in the house? they would have had a lot of republican buy-in, a lot of
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momentum and been very much to their advantage to pass it then. this is what i'm talking about. time is never a friend to legislation. what you've seen now is a build-up in opposition. so this is -- i'm not going to say it's make or break. that would be overly dramatic. it's a very important moment for joe biden and for his presidency to come out of this meeting if not with a deal with substantial progress and momentum towards making a deal in the next week. >> a great point. an interesting moment in team that they might have gotten the infrastructure deal done. progressives said no way, we're not going to take it unless we get the whole human fracture part of the package as well. maybe president biden looks back and realizes maybe that's when i should have been more aggressive in terms of presidential power at that point. we'll see where this goes. thanks, chris. >> thanks, martha. >> martha: let's bring in fox
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news contributor liz peek and steve hilton, host of the next revolution. good to have both of you back. you know, liz, just in terms of the president's power at this point, right? how do you gauge it? he's got this progressive wing that has obviously succeeded in gumming up the gears here. pretty dramatic way. so he walks into that room and he has to do some negotiating and no doubt a lot of behind the scenes stuff before he gets to this moment where he walks in. you know what do you see? a crystal ball here? >> look, i think there's a couple things. one, his approval ratings are terrible, martha. i think that doesn't give him the ability to be a big cheerleader for this legislation or indeed for his party. no one is going to rely on joe biden to help them win re-election in 2022 as things stand now. the other thing that we haven't talked about that should be talked about is that these
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progressives are not really like most traditional politicians. joe manchin is open to compromise. if you give him something on energy and don't bang up on coal touch, he will come up on the number. that's a traditional compromising politician. we have here real zealots here. it's my way or the highway. remember barney frank calling out bernie sanders for being in congress in decades and not getting anything accomplished because it was his way or the highway? that's what you see with aoc, bernie sanders, elizabeth warren to a lesser degree. these people tonightbroker compromise. historically they wouldn't be in a position of power. joe biden has put them in a position of power and has nancy pelosi. they're reaping what they have
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sown in my view. >> i completely agree. i take it one step further and say don't underestimate the vanity and ambition of bernie sanders. he's the one there that is setting the lead here in terms of how the progressive respond. i can imagine a scenario bernie says look, we're not going to compromise or come down to joe manchin's level. we want the agenda we set out. that's what we believe in. frankly, if that means that biden's presidency is seen as a failure, who cares? what it proves is if you have to get progressives in the white house. he can say in 2024, run for the presidency again and say this is what happens when you get a moderate. that's why you need me to make it happen. >> martha: very interesting. thank you both. great to have you with us. liz peek and steve hilton. thank you. have a great weekend. we'll watch this for some time. we watch what unfolds here. thank you at home for being with us this afternoon. that's "the story" of october 1.
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i think it's going to go on in to the evening and we'll see you back here at 3:00 and "your world" with neil cavuto takes you through the president's visit to capitol hill as he tries to get what he wants out of this deal. that is a deal. that's what he's looking for here, a win is what the the president needs. can he pull it out on a friday afternoon. have a good evening. >> neil: all right. the president on capitol hill right now and he is trying to get the democratic caucus to at least so far work on the democratic caucus to rally around a plan that will unite progressives and moderates even though they are miles apart. the pitch is pretty much the same. we need a win. now, does that win mean a vote on the $1.2 trillion infrastructure only package that nancy pelosi has promised or does it mean as progressives like to say that we wait and wait and wait until at the very least we get a frame


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