Speaker Pelosi and House Democratic Leadership Hold Press Conference on... CSPAN February 26, 2021 5:18pm-5:50pm EST
>> well we are still celebrating the incredible victory from the u.s. supreme court last june where three individuals who came in a one transgender woman were fired simply because of who they are and that includes a dedicated and compassionate funeral home director for year and when she told her employer should be transitioning to live as the woman she has always been they fired her. it includes folks like gerald bostick. >> that good evening everyone. at the end of this week we think back to how we began when our country crossed a very sad number and that was over 500,000 people had died of the
coronavirus and so many millions more have been affected. tonight we are in the rules committee awaiting their product that they will bring to the floor, legislation that saves lives and saves the livelihoods of the american people. it's a great day for us when we take this vote. we will take a vote to reduce the spread of this virus to put as we keep saying vaccinations in the arms of the american people, money into the pockets, children into the schools, workers back into their jobs so that we can go forward. i salute president biden for his american rescue plan which will do just that, rescue the
american people from the loss of jobs, the loss of income, the loss of life first and foremost. i want to salute the committee chairs who did such excellent work putting together this legislation with great precision so that it would honor the 51 votes privilege. it took time. it took knowledge, it took values and it took strategic thinking to get the job done and then it was handed over to the chairman of the budget committee who we could not be better served. if i could make a statement about national values and why it's important to us as a nation to be selective in the priorities we have in our budget and i believe that is how chairman yarmuth has always had as a narrative in his leadership
as chairs the budget committee. it's my honor to yield to him so that he can give us a report as to where we are on this very very important reconciliation bill, a budget which is a statement of our values to save the lives and livelihoods of the american people. >> thank you madam speaker. this process began 25 days ago when we introduced the reconciliation resolution. we made remarkable progress in those 25 days and they want to echo the speaker and complementing all the committee chairs. when you think about the committees that have been involved in this process everybody from the agriculture committee energy and commerce education science veterans affairs across-the-board you realize three things. one is the breadth of the impact of the pandemic in both personal and economic terms and the many
ways in which the pandemic has affected this country in virtually every corner of society and finally third of magnitude of the response that is required and i think that's what you see reflected in this legislation. an incredible piece of work that deals with the pandemic and all of its manifestations in a way that will surely be effective and not only stopping the virus in stopping the pandemic, helping citizens get through the economic challenges that they have had and also helping state and local governments in rebuilding the economy, getting set to rebuild the economy. i think we all realize why this legislation has such broad support. just this week a poll of 76% of the mac and people support the bill and republicans everyone from the chairman of the fed to major business groups, 150
ceos to education groups, labor groups and you can't really name one aspect of society that has not gotten behind this piece of legislation. we believe that this is something that meets the moment. it meets the challenge and it's a great victory for the american people and it will get us finally out of this terrible crisis that we have been facing. >> thank you very much mr. chairman. i know you guys have done a lot of work and i hate to disagree with the chairman. he said this started 28 days ago. mr. chairman u. mean literally in terms or your work on the budget committee, i get that but it's important for us to remember this started almost a year ago and a year ago we saw a crisis confronting the american people.
individually children, families, grandmas grandpas, businesses and our economy generally. so we have responded five successful times and two that have died in the senate which if they had passed in the senate we may not have needed this bill. and five times we passed legislation to respond to this crisis overwhelmingly in a bipartisan fashion and we will see shortly whether some are going to stay the course and respond to our people and our economy. more than half a million of our fellow americans have now died from this disease. it's hard to contemplate anybody
thinking that somebody would attack us and kill 500,000 of our people but that's what covid-19 has done. 10 million more americans are out of work than at this point last year. today's vote is a crucial step in our fight to beat covid-19 and build our economy back better. i hope we will see the senate passed its version and turned it around within the next two weeks. we need to pass this bill prior to march 14 so millions of people are not falling through the cracks. we are determined to send the american rescue plan to president biden cosmic dust before march 14 so he can begin providing american workers this is a schools and communities, men, women and children with the assistance they so crucially need. economists agree that we need a
bold plan, not just another temporary measure. the chief economist of moody's analytics that another relief package is needed to get the other side of the package. the joint analysis of the american rescue plan by the hamilton project in brookings estimated it would list economic activity by 4% this year. that's the kind of shot in the arm the economy needs madam speaker. the gdp would remain the pre-pandemic level for the next several years however so delay is not an option. failure is not an option, retreating from the supportive the american people with the five bills we pass in a bipartisan manner is not an option and the polled by reuters over 90% said the american rescue plan would boost the economy significantly.
we must, we must enact a bill that reflects their urgent needs of our country and meets the crisis we confront. that is a moral imperative as well as the legislative imperatives. and i now yield to mr. clyburn. >> thank you mr. leader and thank you madam speaker and mr. chairman thank you so much for the tremendous work you do give in to this effort. as you have heard over 70% of the american people are in favor of this plan. in fact earlier this week 178 ceos have written a letter to the congress asking that we pass this plan. the vast majority i think 56% of
small businesses have asked us to please pass this plan. the american rescue plan builds the foundation for coordinated public-private partnerships and a compassionate response to the needs of families and communities for us to get beyond this pandemic. i feel certain that we will pass this bill tonight in a solid way and i hope that the senate will also respond to this with a solid response so that the american people can begin to feel better about themselves and their future. with that i yield back to you
madam speaker. i will gladly entertain your questions and the speaker will answer them. [laughter] >> thank you very much mr. clyburn. and the distinguished majority leader as well as the chair of the budget committee. other members of the leadership are here and intellectual resources with any questions you may have. we all gather in the legislation that members will be receiving that comes from the rules committee where it is still under consideration but it's a great -- we are going to make a giant step forward tonight. any questions? >> madam speaker do you agree with some of the members of the democratic party that believe the senate should either overruled the parliamentarian on
minimum wage or break up the filibuster is part of this package? >> i would ask any of my colleagues who want to answer this question to join me. as a matter of practice i don't get involved in the rules of the united states senate but as a matter of values i can just say we will not rest until we passed the 15-dollar minimum wage. we have been engaged in the fight for 15 for a long time. this is legislation that affects the majority of women and 60% of the people making minimum wage are one women. many are moms and it is so essential for us to do this and whether it happens when we send this over there, we are sending it as a symbol for the difference it will make in the lives of the american people but not just a symbol but as a solid
proposal. if it doesn't prevail because of senate rules we will persist but we will not stop until we very soon pass the 15-dollar minimum wage. >> madam speaker? >> yes maam. >> when you'd look at this issue specifically raising the minimum wage it's an issue that could cost democrats the house and senate in 2022. there's a level of capacity that's allowable of apathy that develops among people that vote democrats in the congress and hope it will change will argue that democrats aren't doing enough to pass it. >> we are determined to make it pass. i don't want to answer the hypothetical. we have come here to get the job done. would you like to speak to that?
>> do i want to? [laughter] >> we are going to do this. i think the speaker is correct and that's way we are keeping it in our build. if we are going to be political about it i think we are doing this because we are responding to the american people. we are at the body in congress that is the closest to the american people and we think that $15 an hour ought to be the law of the land. you'll see what the senate does. if they don't agree we'll come back. an independent stand-alone piece of legislation and we want to pass it again and hope that they respond. the other thing is that parliamentarians rule. they will abide by the rules and
i think the president is not going to navigate overruling the parliamentarian and we will see what happens with the alternative after we pass it. >> let me say that we have been on this for a long time. when we won the house in this century the first time in 2006 in the first 100 hours, not days, the first 100 hours we passed an increase in the minimum wage. it had not been increased for 11 years and we passed an increase in the minimum wage. he was part of the january 2007. they went to the senate and have the supportive senator and we urge them to pass the legislation because it was so
necessary. this is not a provision in the bill that is accepted or not by the senate. this is a value, this is a priority. we will get it done and again we will study what the opportunities are to do that but let's not be distracted from what is happening in this legislation. we have a family of four getting $1400 times four, fit the $600, for a family of four and individuals getting the 1400 to bring it to $2000 for this series of direct payments. half of the poor children in america will be taken out of poverty with the child tax credit and especially addressing younger children in poverty, under 6-year-old children in poverty. these current income tax credit
brings abe woon to those who are working and get the earned income tax credit. the unemployment insurance which expires the middle of march will be extended as well as the expanded benefits for that. not to mention or to mention the funding for schools so that our children can go back to school safely and the funding for the vaccine and its production, distribution and administering it into the arms, that's funding of tens of millions of dollars so you are talking about crushing the virus is legislation goes down the road to doing that. if you're talking about putting money in the pockets of the american people this is going to be a boon for our country and working families and if you're talking about getting our
children back to school safely, billions of dollars to do just that in a way that is safe and addresses those schools which are in drastic need for better ventilation and separation and the rest, if we are talking about helping the food insecure -- millions of food insecure children in america, it addresses the food security money and those who are insecure with housing on the verge of addiction, the funding is there. a better way to attend to small businesses. this is a spectacular piece of legislation. while the senate has presented presented -- prevented us temporarily from passing one aspect of it let us not be distracted from what is in here because this is a great bill. any other comments on the bill? >> then you comment on the
electoral implications of this the more important question is what kind of price will republicans in congress and outside who are opposed to this help to the american people and opposed to raising the minimum wage what kind of price are they going to pay? >> is that your sales pitch to progressives in your caucus who two weeks from now may have to vote without having a minimum wage? we have a consensus that we are here to get the job done for the american people. this is about any sales pitch. this is about who we are and so many aspects of the bill have been constructed by our members. it's a great opportunity for our country. >> is that with or without minimum wage? >> absolutely. >> when the bill comes back. >> who called on you?
go ahead. >> when the bill comes back do you fear that some in your caucus will say we want the perfect bill? the [inaudible] explain more. >> no. i just answered your question. does anybody think that there's any chance that we do not pass this? >> they are is uniform support with this transformational legislation in the house democratic caucus. there is no fair to partly cloudy view of the american rescued plan. it's a sunny aspirational because the $1.9 trillion plan speaker indicator will crush the virus provide direct relief to
the american people, increase the direct payment to a total of $2000 provide $25 billion in assistance to renters and homeowners who were struggling, increase the food security ebt program by 15%, provide three to $50 billion in state and local assistance so we can protect public programming, public safety, public health, public education, public housing public transportation and the provision of the public good that those are just the highlights. that is not the fine print because it's a once in a century pandemic and the caucus under the leadership of speaker pelosi is right nice with the full support of everyone that it requires a once in a century continuing comprehensive and compassionate congressional response and that's exactly what
the american rescue plan represents. >> i think that our unity around this bill comes from the stories that we have heard in our districts and i just want to talk to one woman whose story has come to my attention and my district and how it transformative this bill will be for her. she lost her job shortly after the pandemic, lost her apartment and lost her childcare and didn't have a way to be able to feed her young child or afford diapers. with this bill, and i'm so grateful to the leadership of my colleagues and the speaker who will say to her one of the one in four americans who have been forced out of the workforce, one of the people of the 140,000 jobs that were lost in december, every single one of them was held by a woman and
predominately women of color. this bill will say to her there's a child tax credit that can help lift your child out of poverty. there will be a survival check to help you put a down payment on a new apartment. there will be food available for you. there will be vaccines and testk to your job. this is what this bill means to americans, that we see them and that is why we are so united behind this and it's just not the democratic caucus, it's the american people. because we are seeing them and we are meeting their tremendous suffering and loss with tremendous solutions and help. so i am so grateful to this caucus and to the work that has been done and we look forward to delivering this to all of those who have struggled through this
last year and to restore that hope to our community. that is my -- supported by our caucus. >> this is an important bill for our caucus in their country but i want to thank chairman yarmuth and the budget committee members who have done the work to get us this far and the committee chairs in addition to the members of the leadership high knee. this bill has the support of our caucus because it meets the needs of our community. that is art guiding principles and we know that. we know that it has the public support. his charm and yarmuth mentioned the question is will the other side acknowledge that? will they acknowledge that this bill provides benefits because and i'm not the only colleague on this this stage who has had conversations with local leaders, who enthusiastically
support this bill as chairman jeffrey said because it protects the public good, public transportation, public education, local money for our local communities. that's why this bill is good in addition to the money for vaccine distribution that meets the needs of our communities. it's important and our colleagues recognize that and that's why share the confidence and the sunny view as the chairman mentioned that we will pass this bill and we will pass it again because it is good for the american people. >> if i could build on the vice-chairman's point i had my thanks to speaker pelosi and senator clyburn. three of the four county executives in my district which is a very conservative district all republicans all three support this legislation.
i think it's important not to miss the bipartisan support for this package as soon as you step out of their public and caucus. the fact of the matter is that county executive town supervisors and people in the frontline who are responsible in many cases for administering the vaccine in being a public health provider to americans, they get it. they understand that this is a long dark night but there is joy in the morning if we can come together around this rescue plan for the american people. it's not just is the republican caucus and us, it's the millions of republican voters who have said they support this legislation. 75% of the american people, 75%. that includes large numbers of republican who say we needed and we need it now. i would point to the broad bipartisan support of this package. >> thank you.
i thank the members of the leadership for just that, their leadership in all of this and all that entails. i also want to and knowledge as i have to the chairman of the budget committee and many other chairs who are part of constructing this proposal, this legislation and i want to thank their staff because we have work 24/7 on the part of the members but especially in the part of the staff so please convey your gratitude of leadership to the staff. in any case i also want to acknowledge the staff of the
country but one the big provisions of this bill is the support for our heroes, honoring our heroes and you've heard they say that many times. honoring our heroes, putting money in the pockets of the american old and crushing the virus again in putting hours children safely in schools but the schools can't function in all the other things can happen unless we support our heroes and those who work at the state and local level. our health care workers, are transportation, sanitation, food workers are first responders, our teachers, our teachers, our teachers and when we talk about the funding in the bill for education in light of covid that is one piece of it but over 90% of the funding for education comes from state and local government and that's why we have to have that supported the legislation as well.
it's a revenue lost because of shutdowns and because of costs from covid that were unanticipated and the health care workers people talk about our heroes and how do we thank them? we thank them by letting them keep their jobs. more than 1 million of local employees have been, have lost their jobs because of the loss of revenue from the shutdowns so in any case every way that we come out this challenge that we have this bill addresses it and pretty soon it will be passed in the congress and the house sent over to the senate to be further past and go to the white house in time for the march 14 deadline. i would like it well before that. the sooner we pass the bill and
it assigned the sooner we can make the progress that this legislation is all about, saving the lives and the livelihoods of the american people. thank you very much. good evening. [inaudible conversations] >> net neutrality is an issue that was a huge huge divisive issue between democrats and republicans during the trump administration which overruled net neutrality of the obama administration now the biden at has decided to step back from
that and allow the states to go ahead with their own individual net neutrality rules. we are likely to see if the federal government doesn't act femal complicity of the net neutrality rules popping up state i stayed again the whole tech landscape. next the opening day of cpac with senators lankford and former wisconsin ger