日期:2021-03-31 10:32





Well, the president is absolutely open to the idea from Republicans, from Democrats, to make any piece of legislation better and stronger. But what is not going to allow for its efforts to make it more difficult and harder to vote and efforts to do that, people should question whether they have -- why they would be doing that? If they have the best ideas, they should make it easier for people to vote. But you know, this is the process of a bill becoming a law -- Chris, if Republicans want to come to the table have a discussion about what kind of package they can support to make voting more easy, easier and more success accessible, the president is absolutely open to having that discussion. Some Democrats are urging the president to push to kill the Senate filibuster in order to pass legislation to protect voting rights. Here's what the president said about that this week. If there's complete lockdown and chaos as a consequence of the filibuster, then we'll have to go beyond what I'm talking about. But, while the president says that the filibuster is a relic of the Jim Crow era, here's what Joe Biden said when he was in the Senate himself. Take a look. At its core, the filibuster is not about stopping a nominee or a bill. It's about compromise and moderation. And just last year, Kamala Harris, when she was in the Senate, led the filibuster against Republican Senator Tim Scott, an African-American, his plan for police reform. So, is the filibuster racist? Is it wrong? As the president said just last week, Chris, it's been abused, and in the first 50 years of the filibuster being around, it was used about 50 times. It was used five times that many last year. The president doesn't think that's how the filibuster should be used. There's an easy solution here, though, which the president would certainly advocate for, which is Democrats and Republicans, Republicans coming to the table with a willingness and an openness to discussing how we get things done. They want to come the table and talk about how to make voting easier, more accessible, let's have that conversation. The president is eager to have it. He's not eager to move with destroying the filibuster. He's eager to get things done for the American people, but he's also not going to stand by and prevent forward moving progress from happening. So that's what people heard from him last week. I just want to point out, because some people noted it after the news conference, if you're talking about abuse of the filibuster over the last two years, the Democrats were in the minority, so they were the ones abusing it. I agree, it's been used by both parties. I want to move on to the mass shootings in Atlanta and Boulder, Colorado, in the last couple of weeks, and since then, there has been a new push for gun controls. But Mr. Biden said, and I mentioned it at the top of the program, that one of the keys to being a successful president is understanding how to prioritize your agenda. Take a look. The other problems we're talking about from immigration to guns and the other things you mentioned are long-term problems. They've been around a long time. Some gun control and immigration advocates are -- pushed back on that and said, it sounds like the president is saying these are long-term problems, wait your turn.




Well, first, the president has been an advocate for gun safety measures throughout his career. He helped pass the Brady Bill into law, increasing background checks when he was in the Senate. He helped get an assault weapons ban in place. He led the effort in the Obama-Biden administration to put in place a dozen -- two dozen executive actions when bipartisan legislation failed. He's not new to this issue. It's an issue he will continue to advocate for. And, Chris, 90 percent of the public supports universal background checks. That's something the Senate should be able to move forward on and that the president will continue to push for. He knows that as president, you've got to walk and chew gum. You got to do multiple things at the same time and he's ready to do that. Finally, as we said at the top of the program, the president is going to lay out his -- the next part of his economic recovery program in a speech in Pittsburgh this week, including infrastructure, education, child care, a number of issues. Is that going to be just one huge bill, or is it going to be split up into two parts? And how big is the total price tag going to be? Well, first, Chris, when the president advocated for the American Rescue Plan, he talked about this being two stages: rescue and then recovery. What the American people will hear from him this week is that part of his plan, the first step of his plan towards recovery which will include an investment in infrastructure, we shouldn't be 13th in the world, I don't think anyone believes that the wealthiest, most innovative country in the world. And he's going to have more to say later in April about the second part of his recovery plan, which will include a number of the pieces you talked about -- health care, child care, addressing that. It's a crisis right now. The number of women who have left the workforce, he wants to help to address that. The total package we're still working out, but he's going to introduce some ways to pay for that, and he's eager to hear ideas from both parties as well. So, are we talking about two separate bills? And if so, just briefly, because we're out of time, is he hoping that infrastructure he can get past with Republican votes, and then he sticks what we're hearing is going to be $2 trillion in tax cuts in the second package, and then pass that through reconciliation on a straight Democratic Party line vote? Well, we're not quite at the legislative strategy yet, Chris, but I will say that I don't think Republicans in this country think we should be 13th in the world as it relates to infrastructure. Roads, railways, rebuilding them, that's not a partisan issue. That's a lot of what the president will talk about this Wednesday. Then he will have another package, another proposal that he will put forward in just a couple of weeks that will address a lot of issues that American people are struggling with -- child care, the cost of health care. So that's what they can expect to hear from him in April. But just to lock down, two separate bills, correct? Two separate proposals and we'll work with the Senate and the House to see how it should move forward. Jen, thank you. Thanks for your time this weekend. Please come back. Thank you, Chris.