Источник
Выбор редакции
10 июля, 21:57

Congressman Donald McEachin Delivers Weekly Democratic Address

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Donald McEachin of Virginia delivered the Weekly Democratic Address.  In this week’s address, the Congressman discussed the urgent need to pass House Democrats’ George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to fight systemic racism and the vital role of environmental justice in protecting disproportionately impacted communities of color.  Video and audio of the Weekly Democratic Address can be downloaded here. Below is a full transcript of the address: “Hello, I am Congressman Donald McEachin, and I have the honor of representing Virginia’s Fourth Congressional District. “Americans today are recognizing we must do more to address two critical and intertwined issues in our nation: the unfinished work of racial justice and the need for environmental justice to protect our communities. “People across our country are still protesting in the streets because they believe in a better America, an America where equal justice under the law is more than an empty platitude.  “Our communities are tired of watching African Americans maimed or killed with no accountability from our justice system.  Americans tire of the endless hashtags and of shouldering the compounding weight of our collective grief, pain and rage.  They deserve for their Congress to rise to meet this moment in our nation’s history, to make clear once and for all that no one should be above the law because they wear a badge. “I urge the Senate to join House Democrats in hearing the loud, unyielding call for justice and pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to end the pervasive bias in policing and demand accountability from officers to the communities they serve. “Unlike the Senate Republicans' proposal, the American people deserve serious legislation that combats the epidemic of racial injustice and police brutality.  They deserve a bill that contains meaningful and mandatory measures to end this country’s persistent pattern of police misconduct. “This crisis is not new, but this moment has to be different.  We cannot go back to business as usual until America shows with action that Black Lives Matter.  The present moment has laid bare what we have known all along: the real and urgent discussions happening today about racism in this country are long overdue.  “Never have the deadly and insidious effects of systemic racism been clearer than the past few months as we have all weathered a pandemic that has disproportionately assailed and killed Black and brown people.  The COVID-19 crisis proves that evidence of systemic racism is not always as graphic as cellphone footage of police encounters gone wrong, but its effects are just as destructive. “Addressing racism and justice for all certainly means that one’s own community, one’s home must not be a health risk.  It is no secret that the same racist economic and political forces that previously redlined Black and brown neighborhoods into environmentally hazardous areas still exist today. “To begin to address this reality, I worked alongside Representative Raúl Grijalva, Chair of the Natural Resources Committee and with environmental justice communities across the country to introduce the Environmental Justice for All Act, legislation crafted by the people, for the people to give them a voice and a means to fight back against the pollution that threatens their children and their families. “We spent the last year and a half listening and learning from the stories of these communities, stories that should never happen in America. “Stories of Black and brown communities located adjacent to toxic waste sites and factories spewing noxious air, grappling with alarming rates of asthma, cancer and even death. “For too long, we have denied those communities a voice and a means to fight back against the pollution that threatens their children and families. “But this Congress, in the House Democrats’ Climate Action Plan drafted by the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, we make clear our commitment to these communities to work collaboratively to right these wrongs. “We make clear that the concerns of communities most affected by pollution and health disparities must be centered in our policymaking and ensure that environmental justice is our future.  And we make clear to the polluters that are poisoning the air and waterways in environmental justice communities that enough is enough. “House Democrats know that the clean, sustainable future we are fighting for cannot exist without a democracy that truly provides equity and justice for all.  And while President Trump eliminates basic and necessary environmental regulations, we are working hard to ensure Americans, no matter their zip code or race or income level, are protected from environmental devastation at a time when they need our support the most. “Communities that have disproportionately suffered from environmental injustice and are now hardest hit by the coronavirus crisis need the government to treat them as a strong partner in the decisions that will affect their neighborhoods and their well-being, not relegate them to an afterthought. “Together, we will work to protect our environmental laws, to research and address the cumulative impacts of pollution on overburdened communities and to prioritize frontline communities in new federal spending to deploy clean energy and infrastructure. “And together, we can ensure a better, brighter, more sustainable future for Americans across our country, while delivering justice to communities that have long been denied.”

Выбор редакции
10 июля, 00:04

Transcript of Pelosi Weekly Press Conference Today

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi held her weekly press conference today in the Capitol Visitor Center.  Below are the Speaker’s remarks: Speaker Pelosi.  Good morning, good morning.  So here we are.  The Supreme Court, including the President's appointees, have declared that he is not above the law.  The path that the Supreme Court has laid out is one that is clearly achievable by us in the lower court, and we will continue to go down that path.  The decision enables – to enable the Trump Administration's – I don't even know what they are saying about it.  I hear he is tweeting one thing and then other people are saying another.  But whatever it is, it is not good news for the President of the United States.  It is a path that we will take.  So I put out a statement.  I don't see it here.  Do we have a copy of the statement?  Do we?  It’s not here.  So – but, anyway, you don't need me to give you a piece of paper to have what the statement is, but it took me a little longer to get out here because I wanted to read to the bottom, end of the decision.  And Chief Justice specifically speaks to the fact that the President is ‘not above the law.’  And that was something that was proclaimed in the decision, including two of his recent appointments.  Now, let me say: A careful reading of the Supreme Court ruling related to the President's financial records is not good news for President Trump.  The Court has reaffirmed Congress's authority to conduct oversight on behalf of the American people, as it asks for further information from Congress.  Congress’s constitutional responsibility to uncover the truth continues, specifically related to the President's Russia connection that he is hiding.  The Congress will continue to conduct oversight For The People, upholding the separation of powers that is the genius of our Constitution.  We will continue to press our case in the lower courts.  That is what happened this morning. Earlier this morning, for the sixteenth week in a row, over one million Americans applied for Unemployment Insurance – the sixteenth week in a row.  We have to open up our economy.  We can only do so by killing off the virus.  That is what is in The Heroes Act.  Testing.  Tracing.  Treatment.  Separation.  Masking.  Wash your hands.  Keep your distance.  As I said, that is what is in The Heroes Act.  All of the scientific pronouncements have spoken to the need for more testing and the urgency of tracing and the benefit of treatment so that people do not die.  Again, this Administration seems to be turning its back on science and instead saying: Open up.  Take a risk.  And oh, by the way, open up the schools.  Open up the schools.  As a mother and a grandmother, we all – everybody I know wants to open up the schools.  Indeed, a large percentage, overwhelmingly, the teachers want to open up the schools, but it has to be safe for the children.  And to be safe for the children, we must attack this coronavirus.  We must kill it off.  We cannot ignore it and we cannot call it a hoax and we cannot misrepresent the facts as to what the status of it is.   In order for the children to go back to school, our state and local governments have to function.  That is what The Heroes Act is about.  The first piece of it: honor our heroes.  State and local government, hiring our first responders.  Our teachers, our teachers, our teachers.  Our health care workers who risk their lives to save other lives, and now they may lose their jobs.  Over a million public employees have lost their jobs in the course of this coronavirus and we can change that if we make the commitment in The Heroes Act to state and local government.  And by the way, go there – Speaker.gov/HeroesAct – and see how much money goes to your community.  Your state, your locality, your county, your municipality.  And then recognize that it is only one‑half of what the Republicans gave to the top one percent in their tax scam.  Their tax scam costs twice as much as what we want to spend to open up government, to provide the services that people need, to open up our economy and to open up our schools.  The Secretary of Education indicated that children should go to school.  They have to take risks.  Everybody takes risks: you take risks to ride a bicycle, to be an astronaut.  There are risks.  You have to take risks.  No, we don't want our children to take risks to go to school.  We are supposed to mitigate for any damage.  We are supposed to keep them safe.  So, with stiff competition, that was one of the most ill‑informed statements – stiff competition though in this Administration on this and other subjects.  And the third part of it is, we are never going to have our economy come back unless we recognize that we must put money in the pockets of the American people.  And that is what we do with the third pillar of The Heroes Act.  Unemployment Insurance will expire in a few weeks.  In July, Unemployment Insurance will expire.  The Heroes Act extends it, extends it.  And, again, the last checks go out about July 26th, or something like that, but it is over by the end of the month.  We must renew Unemployment Insurance.  This morning, sixteenth straight week of one million people, over one million people applying for Unemployment Insurance.  And we have to put the money in the pockets of people with our direct payments, absolutely essential.  If we do not, if we do not help our state and local governments honoring our heroes, if we do not kill off this virus and if we do not put money in the pockets of the American people, our economy will only worsen.  Don't take it from me.  Take it from authorities on the subject who track this all the time.  So it is absolutely essential, absolutely essential, that we come together in a bipartisan way and get this done in the next few weeks.  It also has in there, resources that had bipartisan support in the country for helping the Postal Service – keeping the Postal Service going, keeping voting‑at‑home funded; and also, a very important part, putting people back to work, our OSHA provision for safety in the workplace.  PPP and its availability, or lack thereof, is very much a part of everything we have been talking about, about meeting the health care needs of people who are diagnosed.  It is essential to our teachers and our children going back to school, teachers, custodians, all of those who are responsible for the education of our children, which is of the highest priority for us all, safely – PPP, necessary.  And, again, we have a shortage of that. So we have to have commonsense weigh in on this, commonsense to listen to the scientists and not CDC regulations that are predicated on a tweet, on a tweet.  What?  We always want any guidance that we get to be updated by the scientific knowledge and the rest, but for this to be downgraded on a tweet, just tells you how senseless all of this is.  As we are gathering here this week, the – many things are going on.  The Appropriations Committee is meeting every day, starting Monday, over the next two weeks putting together our appropriations bills which, as you know, must be passed by September 30th.  That is the deadline.  The Armed Services Committee is meeting, I think right now, as we speak, and they are being briefed on matters that relate to Russia.  Right now, today, I guess it is a continuation of the work of the Committee on Energy and Commerce that is having its hearings.  Appropriations, Homeland Security – these are the subcommittees of Appropriations.  Foreign Affairs Committee on Europe is having its hearings.  Education and Labor: examining the impact of COVID‑19 on the future of higher education.  Financial Services: economic perspectives on alternative approaches to protecting workers during COVID‑19.  Oversight Committee goes into the life‑threatening impact of single‑use plastic on human health.  And then in Natural Resources, there is a meeting of Democrats only on the restoration economy, examining environmental and economic opportunities.  The list goes on: Homeland Security, Small Business, Budget, Veterans Affairs, Energy and Commerce, I said.  There are, like, three days of these meetings.  So, I am very proud of the work that the Members are doing to prepare us for the votes on the Floor when we call all the Members back.  Intelligence Committee, when we come back, will be marking up the intelligence bill.  But it is all in the works now.  So, we are getting ready for when they come back.  And as I say, many of these meetings are virtual.  Some are hybrid.  Some are actual – all of them important, and all of them to be acted upon when we come back, including the appropriations bill and almost immediately, the National Defense Authorization Act.  The urgency – it is more than urgent.  It is so necessary and so obvious of The Heroes Act demands.  It is an imperative that we put something together that passes out of the Congress, signed by the President, by the end of July so that people who have uncertainty in their lives because of unemployment, uncertainty in their lives because of just not having resources, will have the comfort of knowing and therefore the consumer confidence to spend, which is so important.  Anyway, it is just a very eventful time, sad about the, again, the sixteenth week of people applying for Unemployment Insurance.  Carefully reading the Supreme Court decision and responsibilities for them that they lay out for the Congress, which we will abide by in the lower courts.  And, again, seven to two, even the President's appointees saying the President of the United States is not above the law.  *** Speaker Pelosi.  Any questions?  Yes, ma'am. Q:  Leader McConnell said this week in Kentucky that he is open to direct payments – another round of direct payments to individuals making under $40,000 a year.  Can you tell us if you have spoken with him about this?  Speaker Pelosi.  No. Q:  It seems like a departure from his initial comments where he was saying, ‘We need to wait and see before there is more spending.’  And, now, does that make you more open to liability protections on a next relief bill?  Speaker Pelosi.  No.  Let me just say this.  Every day you see them opening up more.  We get overtures about, ‘Can this be in the bill.  Can that be in the bill,’ because they know there has to be a bill.  What doesn't measure up is, ‘Oh, it can only be a trillion dollars.’  No, we need a trillion dollars for state and local.  We need another trillion dollars, another trillion dollars for Unemployment Insurance and direct payments.  Something like that, but probably not as much for the testing, tracing, treatment, etcetera.  So, a trillion dollars is: okay, that is an interesting starting point, but it doesn't come anywhere near.  I don't know where the $40,000 came from.  I think there are many families depending on size of family and so many different things, that the $40,000 would have to be explained, justified and the rest.  But I think families making over $40,000 probably need assistance.  Again, just depending on their family situation.  We think there is a path to talk about protecting businesses and workers and customers who come in, and that is our OSHA provision.  But, again, let's hear what everybody has to say.  But don't say, ‘You all have to go back to work even if it isn't safe.  And by the way, we are removing all responsibility from the employer.’  I mean, that is just – no. Q:  You said ‘trillion.’  Did you mean billion?  Speaker Pelosi.  Of what? Q:  You just said ‘trillion.’ Speaker Pelosi.  For what? Q:  ‘A trillion here, a trillion here.’  Did you mean billion?  Speaker Pelosi.  A trillion for what, dear? Q:  Oh, never mind. Speaker Pelosi.  No, I am saying ‘trillion,’ trillion for state and local, a trillion for Unemployment Insurance and direct payments, a trillion, with a ‘TR.’  Let's put it this way: $1 trillion for state and local.  That is half of the cost of the Republican plan in their tax scam, which added $2 trillion to the national debt.  So, yes, I am saying ‘trillion.’  And let me say another thing about trillions.  The Fed is spending trillions of dollars to shore up the stock market.  That may be a good thing to do.  We think we should spend trillions of dollars to shore up America's workers, and there is a path that is a good investment, that is stimulus, that keeps people from losing their jobs and helps people get jobs by being a stimulus and having consumer confidence, spending, injecting demand into the economy, job creating.  Chad and then you and then you. Q:  Madam Speaker, so you say that this was bad news for the President on the decision this morning, but – Speaker Pelosi.  I said it wasn't good news. Q:  It wasn't good news.  Speaker Pelosi.  Yeah. Q:  With that said, what will the House do now with this?  I mean, had they ruled differently, you would have conceivably had these records, you know, before the Financial Services Committee or the Oversight and Reform Committee, and you would have had to parse through these, go through another investigation?  Speaker Pelosi.  But why are we talking about what we would have done?  They didn't rule that way? Q:  So what will you do?  What will prevent you from doing some sort of a broader investigation, which some Democrats will tell you privately that they would prefer not to go down that road just before an election? Speaker Pelosi.  And some will tell me they want to go down that road.  But we have a path that the Supreme Court has laid out that we certainly will not ignore, and we will never stop our oversight that is our responsibility under the Constitution of the United States.  By all accounts for many of the, shall we say, constitutional authorities, this was – there was never any way they were going to give us the records right now, but they would give us a path to the records.  Yes, sir. Q:  Speaker Pelosi, it is very unlikely you’re going to see these before the election.  It is also unlikely that, in your case, the tax returns will go before the grand jury before the elections.  Are you disappointed that Congress and the American public will not see these records, almost certainly will not see these records before November?  Speaker Pelosi.  Well, thank you for that question because it takes me to what was really important about this decision.  This isn't so much about the President's records, although we would like to know how Russia funded his operation all those years, but that is not what was at stake.  What was at stake is, is the President above the law?  Is this court, a court friendly to the President, going to rule in favor of the Executive branch and say that there is no Congressional oversight, undermining our system of checks and balances? So, for us, that was what was important, and what is at stake is the system of checks and balances.  As I say in my statement, the genius of the Constitution. If, in fact, they would have ruled that he is above – not above the law – I mean, that he can do whatever he wants without any oversight from Congress, that would have been just devastating, to tell you the honest truth.  And we would still fight it.  We would still fight it, because they would have abandoned all precedents and the rest that has ruled in favor of Congress having oversight authority.  However, they did not, and the victory is for the Constitution of the United States.  The process will take longer, but that is not what is truly important here.  All I kept thinking is our Founders did this magnificently – magnificently: checks and balances, the separation of power, co‑equal branches of government.  And the Court sustained that this morning. Yes, sir. Q:  Given the unemployment situation and the rise in cases in the past couple of days, do you think it is possible to extend that unemployment benefit separate from The Heroes Act or some other package that you may have to work out before the end of the month? Speaker Pelosi.  The – people ask me, is it possible that you could do the state and local separately or, acknowledging the horror of what is happening with the spikes in the coronavirus, would you do that separately?  They really are all connected.  They are all of one piece.  We will be working on, and our Budget Committee has been making progress on this, on how we have stabilizers so that, if you reach a certain unemployment rate, or whatever measure is appropriate to the action required, that it would automatically happen so that there is no doubt.  But this Unemployment Insurance uncertainty is devastating to families.  So I don't know if that is the easiest thing.  I don't know that they support Unemployment Insurance.  But I do think that they will eventually support state and local government, and they are going to have to come around to something on COVID.  And by the way, much of what we have on these testing, tracing, treatment, etcetera, relates to addressing the disparities in our community, how low‑income families and people of color suffer in a disproportionate way because of their predisposition to it, because of their lack of access to testing early enough, and the rest.  So every piece of it is critically important.  And there is no reason why we should – should we just ignore testing and let this thing go?  Should we just say to state and local, ‘Too bad, fire people – fire people, diminish services to populations and also raise taxes’?  I mean, this is a very well‑thought‑out initiative, and it is all connected.  Open up the economy.  Test.  Treat the people.  Honor our heroes.  It is all connected.  Any other women who have a question?  Yes, ma'am. Q:  Thank you, Madam Speaker.  So you were just talking about congressional oversight.  So my question is about United States withdrawal from the World Health Organization.  Speaker Pelosi.  Yeah. Q:  Since you mentioned that the defund from the organization would be illegal, were House Democrats planning to take any action? Speaker Pelosi.  We are putting together our appropriations bills now.  I think the President's withdrawal from the WHO is senseless.  It is not only about the coronavirus.  It is about polio.  It is about other afflictions, diseases, diagnoses that we have worked together to try to eliminate or diminish.  So I think it is senseless.  As you know, it doesn't become effective until next summer, practically, 2021.  I think it is July.  We will be addressing it in our appropriations bill that is being written this week and next to counter that. Yes, sir. Q:  Speaker Pelosi, on Tuesday, at the HHS Appropriations markup, Congressman Cole criticized the fiscal spending year – next spending bill for forcing family planning guarantees to provide information on abortion to all pregnant women they serve, regardless of their religious belief.  I just wanted to get your thoughts on that.  Speaker Pelosi.  I haven't seen that.  I don't know what he said about it, but when I see it, I will let you know what I think of it. Q:  And then there is also a push to be able to take out the Hyde Amendment. Speaker Pelosi.  Well, let me just say this about the Hyde Amendment: for 40 years, since I was not even in Congress, I have been dismayed by the injustice of the Hyde Amendment.  It just discriminates against poor women and, largely, they are women of color.  And so I don't know if that relates to that.  I don't know what that is.  I don't think that it is in the bill.  I don't – you will have to – Q:  It is not in this bill, but there was a push to possibly renew the Hyde Amendment in the coming spending bills in the years to come. Speaker Pelosi.  But why are we talking about the years to come.  I, myself, would like to see it gone.  Gone.  I think it is gravely unjust, but it is not in this bill, as I understand.  So what was he complaining about, something that was not in the bill? Q:  No, he was complaining about – criticizing that family planning guarantees to provide information on abortions to all pregnant women that they serve, regardless of their religious beliefs. Speaker Pelosi.  I don't even know what you are talking about.  I mean, I just don't.  And I am an appropriator, and I served on Labor‑HHS for many years, and I am very close to the issue of family planning being a mother of 5 in 6 years to the day.  Yes, so I know something about this.  But I don't know what he is complaining about there. Yes, ma'am. Q:  Madam Speaker, this question is close to home for you.  The city of Richmond is obviously in sync with your desire to get rid of Confederate statues, but in Baltimore's Little Italy, the statue of Christopher Columbus was removed or taken down.  And I wonder if you have anything to share about that. Speaker Pelosi.  Well, I am not a big – you know, I don't even have my grandmother's earrings.  I am not a big, ‘Let's see what we have in terms of monuments and this.’  I am more interested in what people have accomplished.  I think that it is up to the communities to decide what statues they want to see, but I think that it is very important that we take down any of the statues of people who committed treason against the United States of America as those statues exist in the Congress, in the halls of Congress, in the Rotunda – not the Rotunda, I don't think, but in the Statuary Hall, and the rest, where many – some of them are.  But I am not one of those people who is wedded to a, ‘Oh, a statue of somebody someplace is an important thing.’  I don’t – again, if the community doesn't want the statue, the statue shouldn't be there.  It doesn't diminish my pride in my Italian American heritage and the fact that it was a country discovered by an Italian and named for an Italian, Amerigo Vespucci.  So I have that pride, but I don't care that much about statues. Q:  Shouldn't that be done by a – respectfully – shouldn't that be done by a commission or the city council, not by a mob in the middle of the night? Speaker Pelosi.  People will do what they do.  It’s a – I do think that, from a safety standpoint, it would be a good idea to have it taken down if the community doesn't want it.  I don't know that it has to be a commission, but it just could be a community view.  And sometimes it is something that has been there – that view has been there for a while.  But let's just say, I always say to young people – children – who come to the Capitol, ‘When you look around, you see statues to people and Washington monuments and the rest, who we respect: Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln.  You know, heroes.  They would want us to be talking about the future, your future.  So everything we do here is about you.’ It is not necessarily – they would want it to be about looking forward, not looking back.  So let's just think about what are the values, the vision, the perspective that we enshrine and how that benefits our children rather than having a big fight about, was somebody worth it?  We know they are not worth it if they committed treason against the United States.  Thank you all very much.

Выбор редакции
09 июля, 18:01

Pelosi Statement on Supreme Court Ruling on Congressional Oversight

  • 0

Washington, D.C – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on the consolidated cases of Trump v. Mazars and Trump v. Deutsche Bank, in which the Court asked the lower courts to further develop the record to assess the House’s need for the President’s financial records: “A careful reading of the Supreme Court rulings related to the President’s financial records is not good news for President Trump.  “The Court has reaffirmed the Congress’s authority to conduct oversight on behalf of the American people, as it asks for further information from the Congress.  Congress’s constitutional responsibility to uncover the truth continues, specifically related to the President’s Russia connection that he is hiding. “The Congress will continue to conduct oversight For The People, upholding the separation of powers that is the genius of our Constitution.  We will continue to press our case in the lower courts.”

Выбор редакции
09 июля, 04:51

Transcript of Pelosi Interview on MSNBC's Live with Joy Reid

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi joined Joy Reid on MSNBC's Live to discuss the urgent need for the Senate to take up the House-passed Heroes Act and other news of the day.  Below are the Speaker’s remarks:  Joy Reid.  Welcome back and, as promised, joining me now is the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.  Speaker Pelosi, thank you so much for being here.  We’re glad that you made it. Speaker Pelosi.  My pleasure.  Joy Reid.  I don't know how much of that last block you listened to, but there's a lot of outrage out there about the fact that the CARES Act, the Paycheck Protection Program – Speaker Pelosi.  Yeah. Joy Reid.  You know, Steve Mnuchin refused to say who got the money, now the information is trickling out – I don't know how people got around him – but you know, finding out that Kanye West got money, that Jared Kushner's company got money, that big-time pastors close to Donald Trump got money.  I know your team put out a statement about your husband being a passive investor in a firm.  How did that happen and how can it be prevented in the next program? Speaker Pelosi.  Well, first, let me just say that the issues that we have right now, much of it, will be ameliorated in The Heroes Act, and that’s what we’re pushing for now.  When the CARES Act, which was, again, an initiative on the Republican side, on the Senate side and we weighed in to improve it.  We turned it from a corporate-down, trickle-down bill to a bubble-up.  Tens of millions of jobs have been saved through the PPP.  Millions of loans have been made.  But the premise, it was supposed to be predicated on the idea that your business could not be sustained unless you had this assistance and you had to attest to that.  We had a hard time getting information from the Treasury, as to who was getting one loan or another.  Now, we’ve gotten some of it, as you say, trickling out.  But, what we saw in the first tranche was very bothersome to us.  That's why Maxine Waters and Nydia Velázquez – Maxine Waters, Chair of the Financial Services Committee; Nydia Velázquez, Chair of the Small Businesses Committee – insisted in the next tranche that we would have a set aside of $60 billion for low – well, women-owned, minority-owned, veteran-owned, Native American-owned businesses.  We still aren't pleased with the results of that.  But it took us into a better direction.  Nydia Velázquez, long-time Chair or Ranking Member of the Small Business Committee, has been insistent on us getting the facts so we can see where this, all of this, is.  And the – well, you asked about – I'll just go to my husband.  Look, 20 years ago, he was an investor, small, under ten percent investor – has nothing to do with running the company, A, or, B, knowledge of it asking for a loan.  But if that company could not attest that their sustainability wasn't – didn't necessitate that, they shouldn’t have asked for the loan.  But it's a hospitality industry and as you know, the hospitality industry has taken a very big hit in all of this.  Joy Reid.   Yeah.  Sparker Pelosi.  But these big – what I think – I think it's interesting to subject every dollar we spend to the most – the harshest scrutiny.  But there is other big money that Mr. Mnuchin has that we don't know how he's allocating it and the rest of that.  And that's where we want transparency, too.  Big, I’m talking about big money.  Eighty percent of these loans went to small businesses.  There are big businesses that you point out that should not have gotten this and they should give it back if they cannot attest to the fact that the jobs would have been lost, their business would not have been sustained without this.  But the bigger chunk of money is still sitting there with Secretary Mnuchin with no accountability at this time.  And he promises he's going to give us the accountability.  We're still waiting.  But as we do The Heroes Act, we can clean some of this up.  There is collateral benefit, there is no question.  We talk about collateral damage happening when good intentions go array.  There is some collateral benefit, but it shouldn't be.  And, again, if you cannot attest that this is about the sustainability of your business – and I have heard the Secretary say that, so I don't know why they did not implement that.  Joy Reid.   Yeah.  Sparker Pelosi.  But there is a lot of good that did come out of PPP.  I'm not saying it would have been our choice to go down that path, but tens of millions of jobs have been saved and millions of loans have been made.  My problem with it is, if you want to know what my problem is with it, why are the banks making all this money on these loans? Joy Reid.  Right.  Sparker Pelosi.  Or they're grants if you live up to the standard, the criteria that are set forth.  Joy Reid.  Sure.  Sparker Pelosi.  And that's why in our second bill, we had that – Nydia and Maxine, Madam Chair and Madam Chair insisted, in their wisdom from their committees, that there would be funding given to community development financial institutions who have knowledge of the community, of small business and underserved communities.  So, it is not just big banks giving it to their friends because that's who they know.  But where that money goes and is lent from is as important as a consideration.  And that has to be part of whatever we do, and we have to hold the Treasury Department accountable for that.  Joy Reid.  Sure.  And I want to play you, you know, Mitch McConnell, obviously negotiating with him can't be easy because he's made it very clear what his priorities are, judges and helping the very wealthy.  Here he is talking about the House bill that you just talked about, that the House is putting together for the next round.  Take a listen.  Leader Mitch McConnell.  And they did come back a couple of days and throw together a $3 trillion unserious package that would have doubled what we have already done.  I can tell you confidently it won't be $3 trillion.  That bill is not going anywhere…I predict the next effort will be more contentious than the last one.  We're four months closer to the election.  There is a lot more elbowing going on.  Joy Reid.  That man's wife took in a considerable PPP loan for his family.  You also have the fact that he and Lindsey Graham and others are refusing to extend or resisting the idea of extending the plussed up Unemployment Insurance for the little guy, for the regular person that's unemployed.  Can you negotiate with somebody like him or would the Democratic Caucus be better off holding a bill until after the election, depending on how the election goes? Speaker Pelosi.  Well, we can't hold the bill.  We’re going to have to insist.  Moscow Mitch is too busy protecting the President from any statements that have been made about the President's all roads lead to Putin.  Moscow Mitch, there you have it.  He doesn't like it when I say that, but I'm saying it anyway.  Here's the thing, on June 30th, state and local governments across the country had to balance their budgets.  We developed The Heroes Act, called, ‘Heroes’ because that's who they pay, health care workers, transit workers, teachers, sanitation workers, food supplies and the rest.  That's who they pay.  And that date has gone by, but we hope to make, in our bill, retroactive so that states – think of all the – and there are like a million public employees who have been fired because of the coronavirus.  And this money, to the states and the localities, tribes and territories, this money, you go to Speaker.gov/HeroesAct and see any place you may have lived, gone to school, have friends and family and see how much money goes to them to do two things: offset any expenses they had from the coronavirus and secondly, make up for lost revenue because of all the shutdowns from the coronavirus.  Joy Reid.  Yeah.  Speaker Pelosi.  And then think of this, all that money, it's a lot of money, all that money is one-half of what the Republicans put in their tax scam in 2017, giving 83 percent of the benefits to the top one percent.  And you know what?  Adding $2 trillion to the debt, no stimulus for the economy.  So, let's understand who we're dealing with.  For him to squawk about $600 when he's giving $2 trillion away, all that money is – I think it is just an excuse.  They don't like Unemployment Insurance.  Okay, so I said 30th of June; on the 26th of July the unemployment checks will stop going out.  Joy Reid.  Right.  Yeah.  Speaker Pelosi.  And we have to have this money by then.  So, who is he going to take it from, the unemployment checks, the direct payments to people who need help, state and local governments, which hire our heroes, who meet the needs of the people? Joy Reid.  Yeah.  Speaker Pelosi.  Who is he going to take it from so he can give it to the highest – top one percent again and again? Joy Reid.  It is quite a good question.  Speaker Nancy Pelosi, we truly appreciate your time tonight.  Thank you so much.  Be well. Speaker Pelosi.  Thank you.  

Выбор редакции
09 июля, 04:16

Pelosi Statement on Retirement of Lieutenant Colonel Vindman

  • 0

Washington, D.C. — Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement on the retirement of Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, following a campaign of intimidation and persecution from the President: “History will remember Lieutenant Colonel Vindman as an American patriot, who proved his heroism both on the battlefield when he earned a Purple Heart and in the House impeachment trial when he spoke truth to power. “The shameful firing of Lieutenant Colonel Vindman from the White House was a clear and brazen act of retaliation that showcases the President’s fear of the truth, which continues to this day.  The firing was one of countless instances of the President putting his personal interest above our national security. “It is sad that America is losing this patriotic soldier because of the President’s cruel vindictiveness and disrespect for the Constitution and our national security.”  

Выбор редакции
08 июля, 18:44

Pelosi Statement on Supreme Court Ruling on ACA Contraceptive Coverage Case

  • 0

San Francisco – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to weaken the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive-coverage requirement by allowing private employers to opt out of providing contraceptive coverage for their employees: “The Supreme Court's decision to enable the Trump Administration’s brutal assault on women’s health, financial security and independence is a fundamental misreading of the statute.  The Affordable Care Act was explicitly designed to prevent discrimination against women and to ensure that women have access to preventive care, including contraception. “It is unconscionable that, in the middle of the worst global pandemic in modern history, the Administration is focusing on denying basic health care to women that is essential for their health and financial security, instead of protecting lives and livelihoods. “The Democratic House will continue to fight to uphold and strengthen the ACA and just last week, passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act to further lower health care costs and strengthen coverage.  Access to affordable health care is a matter of life-or-death, and Democrats will never stop fighting For The People at this devastating time.”

Выбор редакции
07 июля, 00:17

Pelosi, Jeffries and Meng Joint Statement on Passage of House Democratic Caucus Diversity Rule

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries and Chair of the Committee on Caucus Procedures Grace Meng released the following statement after the House Democratic Caucus voted to include a Diversity Rule in the Caucus rules that encourages Members to prioritize diversity and inclusion in hiring practices.  “House Democrats take great pride in the beautiful diversity of our Caucus, which is more than 60 percent women, people of color and LGBTQ,” said Speaker Pelosi, Chairman Jeffries and Chairwoman Meng.  “One of our Caucus’s top priorities has long been to promote diversity at every level of Congress, so that these halls better reflect the dynamism and vibrancy of the American people whom we are privileged to represent.  This Diversity Rule is another key step toward ensuring that our Congressional community will be more inclusive, diverse, open and representative of the full range of voices and values of our communities.” On opening day of the House Democratic Majority, Democrats voted to establish as part of the Rules Package a permanent House Diversity Initiative, which among other steps, created a new House Office of Diversity and Inclusion.  That office has worked over the past year on several diversity initiatives including the Diversity Rule, which encourages Members of the Caucus to prioritize diversity and inclusion in its hiring practices.

Выбор редакции
06 июля, 21:23

Pelosi Statement on the Passing of Jane Morrison

  • 0

San Francisco – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement on the passing of legendary progressive organizer Jane Morrison at age 100: “All San Franciscans are heartbroken by the passing of Jane Morrison: a historic and trailblazing force for progress in America, beloved by all who were blessed to know her. “Jane and her late husband, former San Francisco Supervisor Jack Morrison, lived their lives at the crossroads of some of the most pivotal moments of our nation’s history.  Jane helped elect several of our most transformational leaders, from President John F. Kennedy to California Governor Jerry Brown.  In 2012, I had the great honor to appoint Jane, who was born before women had won the right to vote, to cast our district’s vote in the Electoral College for President Barack Obama: a true measure of our progress as a nation. “Jane and her husband Jack were grassroots champions who brought good humor, boundless energy and extraordinary persistence to their lives’ mission to make our City and Country more just, equal and fair.  Jane was a volunteer in the truest sense: dedicating every degree of her time, energy and passion to achieving social justice.  For five decades, she was a godmother of progressive causes in our city who brought unwavering grace from empowering women to combating homelessness to championing the environment and the economic prosperity of San Franciscans. “Jane was a mentor and friend to so many.  Personally, I learned so much from her.  May her lifetime of courageous leadership be a source of inspiration to all in San Francisco.  And may it be a comfort to Gimmy Park Li and all Jane’s loved ones that so many mourn their loss and are praying for them at this sad time.”

Выбор редакции
06 июля, 17:47

Pelosi Statement on the 85th Birthday of His Holiness The Dalai Lama

  • 0

San Francisco – Speaker Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today in recognition of the 85th birthday of His Holiness The Dalai Lama: “Across the globe, millions of Tibetans and peace-loving people join together to honor His Holiness The Dalai Lama and to wish him a wonderful 85th birthday.  The Dalai Lama is a messenger of hope, whose spiritual guidance has been a vital force to advance warm-heartedness and compassion, promote religious harmony, secure human rights and preserve the language and culture of the Tibetan people. “Sadly, the aspirations of His Holiness and the Tibetan people remain unfulfilled as the oppressive Chinese regime continues its disgraceful campaign of persecution.  Congress on a bipartisan basis has long spoken with one voice in defense of those persecuted by Beijing and will continue to do so.  In January, House Democrats defended the rights of Tibetans to practice their faith, speak their language and celebrate their culture free from Beijing’s repressive grip by passing the Tibet Policy and Support Act, which makes clear the United States’ position that interference by Beijing in the process of recognizing a successor or reincarnation of the 14th Dalai Lama would represent a clear violation of the religious freedoms of the Tibetan people.  The Senate must pass this bipartisan legislation and support the bond of friendship that has existed between the United States, The Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people for decades. “In honor of this special day and of the dreams of the Tibetan people, America remains committed to opposing the acceleration of Beijing’s aggression toward the people of Tibet, as well as its brutal campaign against the Uyghur people, its suppression of free speech and assault on the ‘one country, two systems’ doctrine in Hong Kong, and its violent efforts to undermine religious freedom and human rights throughout China.  May this next year bring His Holiness The Dalai Lama, the people of Tibet and all those working to advance freedom in China and around the world a future of peace, security and prosperity for all.”

Выбор редакции
03 июля, 01:01

Transcript of Pelosi Weekly Press Conference Today

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi held her weekly press conference today in the Capitol Visitor Center.  Below are the Speaker’s remarks: Speaker Pelosi.  Thank you for accommodating the time change today.  Since we finished our legislation yesterday, we are getting ready for the next round of legislation to come to the Floor.  But it changed the nature of today. Here we are.  Tomorrow's a national holiday, getting ready for the Fourth of July.  I wear this flag pin quite frequently.  I have a couple different flag pins, but this one particularly fraught with meaning.  It says on it, ‘One country, one destiny.’  The American flag: ‘One country, one destiny.’  These were the words that were woven into Abraham Lincoln's coat.  It was an imperative then, ‘One country, one destiny.’  It is an imperative now, especially now, when we have such challenges to the well-being of our country. We have a pandemic that is wreaking havoc in households and across the country, hurting our economy.  In that regard, we must put aside bias and embrace science.  Science, science, science.  Testing, testing, testing.  An answer – an answer that helps us address the virus, the pandemic, and enables us to open up our economy in a way that is safe.  That's what's in the Heroes Act: testing, tracing, treatment, separation, hand washing, masks, science, science, science.  Also in The Heroes Act, so named for the heroes that it honors, by keeping them employed – state and local health care workers, sanitation workers, transportation workers, teachers, teachers, teachers, food suppliers, you name them, employees of state and local governments.  And many of them, especially in the health care sections, risking their lives to save other people's lives and, now, they may lose their jobs.  And in the Heroes Act are the resources to keep state and local governments running so they don't have to fire people, so that they can continue services.  Because that's what they'll have to do, raise taxes or lower services or some combination thereof. Also, in the Heroes Act, is – that we have to come together around, recognize our ‘One country, one destiny’ – is putting money in the pockets of the American people.  Direct payments, yes, but also Unemployment Insurance.  I also have in there funding for voting at home, supporting the Post Office, food – many people are going to food banks who never thought they would.  So, it's for every reason: personal, economically, patriotically, budget-wise and the rest, it's very important for us to pass the Heroes Act. When we ran in 2018, our agenda was a simple one: For The People.  For The People we would lower health care costs by lowering the cost of prescription drugs and preserving the pre-existing condition benefit, among others.  That's exactly what we did.  That's exactly what we did on Monday when we passed the Affordable Care Act enhancement legislation.  And a part of it was to lower the cost of prescription drugs by enabling the Secretary to negotiate. At the same time as we were passing that enhancement, the White House is in the Supreme Court trying to overturn the Affordable Care Act because they don't believe in science and they don't believe in governance.  So, if you put the two together, let's just overturn it.  And that may be what they believe.  But if that's what they believe, then they should tell the truth about it instead of saying, ‘Oh, we support the benefit of pre-existing condition existing.’  No, you fought to overturn it.  You've been trying to overturn it for the full time of the Trump Administration.  And now you've taken it to the Supreme Court.  And we will fight, we will fight that fight there.  But I’m very proud of the work of our chairmen to bring our agenda For The People, and the work of the committee members.  The second part of our agenda was the – was to lower health care costs, bigger paychecks by building the infrastructure of America, and to do so in a green way for the future.  It was a very lengthy bill, 25 hours of – in the Rules Committee – not in the Rules Committee, but in the amendment process.  And then a long time on the Floor.  I want to salute the maestro of it all, Peter DeFazio, but many other chairmen played a role in that and I’ve acknowledged them.  But this is a broad bill.  It's transformational.  It's the biggest and greenest infrastructure bill in the history of our country.  And it's about roads and bridges and surface transportation, for sure.  It's also about clean water.  Some of our water systems are over 100 years old, made of brick and wood and now this will be resources there to change that.  It's about infrastructure for broadband so that all children, all families in our country can have distance learning and telemedicine and all that that takes, whether they live in rural areas, which is a focus on rural, or urban deserts in that regard.  Interestingly, Senator McConnell complains, ‘this so-called infrastructure bill would siphon billions in funding from actual infrastructure to funnel into climate change policies.’  Exactly.  We're not siphoning off money.  We're building infrastructure for the future, not for the ’50s.  And we're doing it in a way that cleans – it’s a health issue: clean air, clean water.  It's an economic issue: transportation, transfer of product from farm to market and the rest.  It's a fabulous bill.  It would take too long to go further into it, but be sure it's the safest and greenest infrastructure bill.  We're proud of this legislation because, you know what, it advances environmental justice.  In our health care bill, it was about justice in health care, addressing the concerns of previously under-served communities who are now more drastically affected by the coronavirus.  Part of it was, again, in that regard, many of you were there when we were on the steps of the Capitol, rolling out the Solving the Climate Crisis Action Plan led by Congresswoman, Madam Chair, Kathy Castor of Florida, the most detailed, sweeping climate plan in over a decade, reflecting over 100 hearings across nearly every committee in the Congress. Lower health care costs, bigger paychecks, cleaner government.  And the cleaner government piece in the last few days, the centerpiece was the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which will fundamentally transform the culture of the policing – of ending police brutality and bring accountability to our police departments.  It will save lives.  It recognizes that overwhelming our men and women in uniform – overwhelmingly our men and women in uniform take great pride in the integrity that they bring to their job.  But some don't, and this bill addresses that.  And we're so proud that George Floyd’s family allowed us to name the bill for him.  They said it met their standards.  That was last Thursday.  And, last Friday, we proudly, for the first time, the House voted to grant statehood to the District of Columbia.   Our Members of Congress, again, our priority, and even – all elected officials – safety is our top priority.  If you're – if the people aren't safe, what is the rest?  The rest of it doesn't matter as much.  And as a matter of intelligence, force protection is a top priority.  To protect our men and women in uniform, before the initiation of hostilities, or in response to them, when they are in danger, their protection is of the highest priority.  And so when there are allegations of a threat to our men and women in uniform, we expect the President of the United States to give them that same force protection, that same priority.  And we are disappointed that that has not happened.  In the last – I called for Russian sanctions to be expanded.  In our last Russian sanctions legislation, you may recall, we had a strong bipartisan bill that was to be sent to the President.  But the White House said they wanted us to take out the sanctions on Russia that pertained to the intelligence and the defense sectors, the very sector that is accused of possible threats on our men and women in uniform.  We have to restore those.  Whatever else happens of this, we must restore those sanctions.  And we must act upon them. While we're in the international arena, as many of you know – I saw some of you there – this week, Beijing passed its so-called ‘national security law,’ which signals the death of the ‘one country, two systems’ principle.  When I say I saw some of you there, I meant the Foreign Affairs Committee hearing yesterday.  As one who has worked on human rights in China in a bipartisan way, with our colleagues across the aisle and across the Capitol, it was so encouraging to see the room was an overflow crowd of Members, from both sides of the aisle.  Of course, we had to keep our distance, and therefore the Members had to sit in the, shall we say audience, and others had to come in virtually.  But it was the fullest participation for us to review what is happening there. It was a proud and broad bipartisan participation to shine a light and condemn this law.  Congress, again, on a bipartisan basis, is united in our mission to hold Beijing accountable.  Last year, the House passed the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act.  And, yesterday, we passed Hong Kong Autonomy Act, which had already passed the Senate.  And that is to help end China's campaign of cruelty against Hong Kong.  You've heard me say it again and again: if we don't speak out against violations of human rights in China because of commercial interests, we lose all moral authority to speak out against human rights violations any place in the world. Getting back to the flag and the Fourth of July, we take that pledge every day in the civic arena.  The pledge to the flag ends with ‘liberty and justice for all.’  And everything that I talked about here, whether it was health care or job security or environmental justice or Justice in Policing or statehood for the District of –  we're talking about liberty and justice for all.  That has to be central to all of the legislation that we have put forth, and I’m proud to say that it has been in this array of bills that came forth between last Thursday and yesterday evening, and now we’ll come back – continue our work in committee to bring forth legislation when we come back.  Central to them all will be liberty and justice for all, especially poignant for us as we observe the Fourth of July. *** Speaker Pelosi.  Any questions? Q:  Thank you, Madam Speaker.  My question is about Hong Kong.  There's a new proposal that grants refugee status to Hong Kong residents.  Do you support that bill?  There's a bipartisan bill on that.  And also, what is your overall reaction to mass arrests in Hong Kong during the July 1st protests against the security initiative? Speaker Pelosi.  At the hearing yesterday, I had the privilege, by unanimous consent, to participate in the hearing and listen to the testimony of the witnesses.  And I said there, one of my concerns about the law was, is it starting now that you cannot – you can practically do nothing?  You have no expression of anything, that would you not be susceptible to prosecution probably in Beijing.  So my question was, does this retroactive?  Does this apply to all of the protests for democratic freedoms that have happened in Hong Kong?  I don't know the answer to that.  The Chinese government does.  And unfortunately, they're not sharing that with us right now.  But I fear for it. But if you saw the security, so-called ‘national security,’ what it is is suppression of any expression in Hong Kong, really sad.  So I’m disappointed, obviously, in the arrest of anyone who is speaking out peacefully for democratic freedoms, wherever it is.  In terms of refugee – I’m not familiar with that.  But those people would qualify because they have, by this law, a well-founded fear of persecution in the place of origin from which they would come.  So, they would qualify on that score. I would rather we could make it right in Hong Kong so that that place of such entrepreneurship and dynamism and spirit of democracy – I told you before, when two million people were in the street, like a year and a half ago, I said to the President, ‘Could you say something about the young people in the street?’  He said, ‘Did you see the size of that crowd?  Two million people?’  I said, ‘Yeah, even more significant when you know that that is 25 percent of the population of Hong Kong.’  This is a real tragedy.  It's so sad.  But in the Congress, in the House and in the Senate, in a very unified way, we have all worked together.  It has been, for me, a joy to be bonding with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, both sides of the Capitol, on this very important issue.  The Republicans have been there every step of the way.  I hope the President will be.  Yes, ma'am.  I’ll do you next, Chad. Q:  Given the briefing that you had today – Speaker Pelosi.  Yeah. Q:  Do you think that the President should have been verbally briefed on the information related to Russian bounties? Speaker Pelosi.  Having nothing to do with the briefing that we had today, I think the President should have been verbally briefed on it.  But I thought that before the hearing and it has nothing to do with anything that we were presented at the hearing.  Of course the President should have been briefed.  This is of the highest priority, force protection.  A threat to our men and women in uniform.  The President – it was in his PDB, presidential daily brief, but he wasn't verbally – that doesn't mean that he should't have read that.  But again, having nothing to do with what we saw today. Chad.  Yes, sir. Q:  To that end though, I know that you're always limited in what you can say about these briefings here.  Speaker Pelosi.  Right. Q:  But I understand that this information should have been things that the Gang of Eight or others would have known about.  That said, can you comment if you did know about this? Speaker Pelosi.  I didn't know about it.  But I will say this: it was of the consequential level that the intelligence community should have brought it to us in that way.  But what is important is the President’s relationship with Russia.  This is, this is – at the same time as the White House was aware of the threat to the security of our men and women in uniform, the President was still flirting with the idea of having Russia be part of the G8, in total opposition to the wishes of the other members of the G8.  He wasn’t – they weren’t there, Russia wasn’t, because of their annexation of Crimea, their invasion of Ukraine.  You can’t be in the G8 or the G7.  So why was the President – why were they not raising this to a level to say to the President: this is not a good time for you to be saying Russia should be part of the G8, when in fact there is reason to suspect that Russia was threatening the security of our men and women in uniform. Garrett.  Yes, sir. Q:  To that end, what should happen now?  You mentioned potentially restoring those sanctions – Speaker Pelosi.  Yes. Q:  I know you just had this briefing, but do you think there are other steps that Congress should take in light of everything we are learning about this episode? Speaker Pelosi.  Well, let me just say, and Garrett referenced my statement about – I said it earlier, I think – when Congress, in a bipartisan way, passed sanctions on Russia, the Administration told us to take out the sanctions on the GRU, the intelligence, as well as the defense sectors of Russia.  Those should definitely still be there.  They were there in a bipartisan way.  It's just the Administration wanted them out.  I don't know why.  So, we should have those in there in any event.  As this proceeds, we'll see what other sanctions there should be.  But we want to remove all doubt in anyone's mind that just because it's Russia and just because all roads for the President lead to Putin doesn't mean that we shouldn't be taking careful guard of our elections.  Because 24/7, they are trying to undermine the integrity of our elections again.  And other concerns that we have about Russian behavior in cybersecurity, in actual security issues.  But we don't subject it to the same kind of scrutiny, this Administration doesn't, because it's Russia. Yes, sir. Okay, two then. Q:  On the domestic front, you're leaving now for a few weeks.  You come back July 20th.  Is there enough time to negotiate a compromise on the next COVID relief package? Speaker Pelosi.  Of course.  First of all, I’m not leaving for two weeks, so don't give my husband and my family any thought that I will be there for two weeks.  No.  We come back the beginning of next week, with the Appropriations Committee, starting actually on Monday for some subcommittees, my understanding – for sure Tuesday, so that they can put – the subcommittees can do their work on appropriations and then the full committee the week after can do their – each of those bills, so that when we do come back, we're ready to go to the Floor. Many people will be here.  Some will be virtual, some of it hybrid, some of it actual, some of the virtual.  We'll see.  But Congress will be intensely working, not just Appropriations Committee, but that is what must be done by September 30th.  That has a priority.   And last night, they didn't go too late.  It was a reasonable time.  The defense bill was passed, the NDAA, the National Defense Authorization Act, 56-0.  Completely bipartisan bill, we were very proud of that.  But, yes.  Now, we know what we have – everything we have in The Heroes Act is something the Republicans have voted for before.  Except one thing, which is a stronger OSHA standard to protect our workers.  But everything else in the bill they voted for before.  So, this is nothing new to them.  Some of it bigger, some of it fresher, but all of it something they voted on before.  How this works is the committees do their work and, then, what is unresolved gets kicked up to the four leaders, and obviously the President is going to sign the bill, would weigh in there.  They know – they've made their overtures.  They also have said publicly that this or that should be in the next bill.  So, we anticipate we will have a bill.  Yes, sir.  Q:  Madam Speaker, back, if I may, to the intelligence aspect of this.  The White House continues to say this is not yet verified, one of the reasons that the President – that it did not rise to his level.  It sounds like you're speaking about this being maybe a little bit more conclusive than the White House believes that it is.  Is that your view? Speaker Pelosi.  Let me just say this: you got the con.  The White House put on a con that if you don't have 100 percent consensus on intelligence, that we shouldn't be – it shouldn't rise to a certain level.  Well, we were practically – we would practically be investigating nothing if you had to start off at 100 percent, so don't buy into that.  And neither should the – does the intelligence community.  It's an investigation – it's gathering intelligence.  And they have enough intelligence to know where we have to go next with it. So I don't – I don't know what the point of your question is.  Just because they didn't have 100 percent consensus, should this be not briefed to the President of the United States when it involves the security and safety of our men and women in uniform?  As we said in our statement, Chuck Schumer and I, he should spend more time reading the daily presidential brief – the presidential daily brief, whatever – than planning military parades and preserving the relics of the Confederacy. Q:  Madam Speaker. Speaker Pelosi.  Yes ma’am.  Staff.  Last question. Q:  On that topic, you obviously care a lot about symbols and symbols of America.  I'll make this clearer: can you update us on where you think things stand with the Confederate statues remaining in the Capitol?  And, if you just assume that now that's left to the states because Leader McConnell is not engaging?  Speaker Pelosi.  No. Q:  And also, Vice President Biden said this week he believes there's a distinction for Jefferson, Washington.  Both of those men, there's a bust of Washington and a statue of Jefferson in the House side, which you control.  Do you believe there's a distinction or should there be a conversation about those representations as well? Speaker Pelosi.  I do believe that the people who have committed treason against the United States of America, their statues should not be in the Capitol.  And that is – we took down the paintings of the Speakers who were members of the Confederacy.  And there will be legislation coming forth to remove those same people who meet that low description, if you've committed treason against the United States of America.  It's not about Washington and Jefferson.  It's about Alexander Stephens.  Read what he said about people.  It's about the President of the Confederacy, whose statue is up there, who committed treason against the United States.  So, that's the clarity that we should have.  Some of it is the states have put them there.  The states may want to review.  But in the meantime, while they may be in the Capitol, we can decide where they are in the Capitol.  Thank you all very much.  Happy Fourth of July.  Take care.  Keep a distance.  Wash your hands.  Happy Fourth. Thank you. 

Выбор редакции
02 июля, 20:57

Pelosi, Schumer Joint Statement Following Gang of 8 Briefing on Russian Bounties on U.S. Troops in Afghanistan

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer issued this statement following a classified Gang of 8 briefing on reports of Russian bounties on U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan: “Force protection is a primary purpose of intelligence.  It should have the same importance to the Commander-in-Chief.  Any reports of threats on our troops must be pursued relentlessly.  “These reports are coming to light in the context of the President being soft on Vladimir Putin when it comes to NATO, the G7, Crimea, Ukraine and the ongoing undermining of the integrity of our elections.  “Our Armed Forces would be better served if President Trump spent more time reading his daily briefing and less time planning military parades and defending relics of the Confederacy.”

Выбор редакции
02 июля, 19:16

Transcript of Pelosi Interview on MSNBC’s Live with Stephanie Ruhle

  • 0

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi joined Stephanie Ruhle on MSNBC's Live to discuss the Administration’s handling of intelligence indicating that Russia placed bounties on U.S. troops in Afghanistan, the latest on the Congressional response to the coronavirus pandemic and other news of the day.  Below are the Speaker’s remarks:  Stephanie Ruhle.  I want to bring in the Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi because, in just about two hours, the key group of bipartisan congressional leaders known as the Gang of Eight will be briefed by the Trump Administration officials, getting an update on reports that Russia offered cash bounties to the Taliban to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.  This morning’s meeting comes as President Trump makes his first public comments about those reports.  And I want to get into it with the Speaker of the House.  Speaker, thank you so much for joining me this morning. So much going on.  What are you expecting in your meeting later this morning? Speaker Pelosi.  Well, hopefully we will get the truth.  The fact is that force protection, protecting our troops, is the first responsibility of intelligence.  And that there would be this idea that there would be a bounty on our troops paid by the Russians to the Taliban is something that was so necessary to be pursued.  Why would they have not told the President?  Because he doesn't like to get bad news on Russia.  And, again, why haven't they taken action these months later? So when we hear from them today, hopefully, there will be a level of participation that knows the facts and that we will have a Gang of Eight that is open to the truth. Stephanie Ruhle.  But how confident are you on that level of participation?  The President himself keeps calling all of this a hoax and has said nothing about Vladimir Putin or Russia or possible sanctions, if the President even learns more about it.  Just hoax town. Speaker Pelosi.  Well, his hoax.  He uses a hoax because he'll say this is a hoax, and it's a hoax that they are 24/7 trying to disrupt our election, as they did in 2016.  He says that coronavirus is a hoax.  The fact is the President himself is a hoax. So, let's recognize – now, let's hope that the Gang of Eight shows up open to hear the truth, the facts, the intelligence, and to – that Moscow Mitch doesn't show up, but the Chairman, the Leader of the Republicans in the Senate, comes with an open mind.  I will say this about that: the White House has done a con on saying, ‘Well, because all of the agencies of intelligence have not signed off on this, it wasn't worthy of the President's attention.’  No, the death of our young people in Afghanistan, or any place, is worthy of the President's attention, even if it's caused by his friend Vladimir Putin.  We have to come out of this with sanctions, additional sanctions on Russia. Now, at the President's insistence, when we did the sanctions on Russia before, he insisted that Congress pull back on the sanctions in the intelligence and defense sectors of Russia.  It's time for us to roll those back out.  Congress acceded to his wish in that regard, instituted sanctions but did not include intelligence and defense.  Those have to be reinstituted. Stephanie Ruhle.  Then what tools do you have at your disposal, in the House, to do something to punish Russia for this behavior.  Are there Republicans you can count on to get on board here? Speaker Pelosi.  Well, the Republicans have been, you know, shining the shoes of the President the whole time, House and Senate.  It's most unfortunate.  You just wonder what the President would be thinking if this kind of intelligence had come forth about any other country.  But every time it's Russia, as I’ve said over and over, with this President, all roads lead to Putin, whether it's undermining our election, yielding to them in Syria, whether it's weakening our allegiance to NATO, whether it's ignoring the annexation of Crimea, whether it's invading eastern Ukraine, the list goes on and on. And, by the way, at the same time as the President was aware of this intelligence, he was trying to get Russia to be back in the G-7 to make it the G-8 again.  They were ousted because of the annexation of Crimea and invasion of Ukraine, et cetera.  And the President was ignoring this and not only not pursuing the intelligence, but pursuing Russia being part of the G-7, now back to G-8.  So something is wrong with this picture.  As I’ve said, what is it that the Russians have on this President politically, personally or financially that has this behavior on part of the Commander-in-Chief? But, forgetting that for a moment, let's talk about our men and women in uniform.  Force protection: that is the purpose of intelligence.  The first priority of intelligence is to protect them, and if there are – there is reasonable intelligence to suspect all of this, we don't find an excuse not to pursue it, as this White House has done.  Just thinking of the families of those affected and the rest, we owe them so much more.  Stephanie Ruhle.  In your words, ‘All roads may lead to Russia,’ but that's not a road the President likes to go down.  He's having a press conference in just a few minutes.  And, while we don't know details, I can say with relative confidence, it's going to be about the economy.  We just saw almost five million jobs come back in June.  That's a big positive, however, that is still only 34 percent of all the jobs lost in this pandemic.  As someone who is pushing to extend jobless benefits and more stimulus, how do you read this report? Speaker Pelosi.  Well, first of all, let’s get the whole report.  What we also saw, this is the fifteenth straight week where we have seen over one million people apply for unemployment benefits.  This report is a report of the first part of June where the economy was opening up, unfortunately, not successfully.  And I think, when we see the whole month of June, sadly, it will show a different figure.  We're all for, you know, great news when there's a good jobs report, but let's see it in its proper perspective.  There is no question that we need more stimulus.  Just don't take it from me, take it from the Chairman of the Fed, from the Secretary of the Treasury.  In terms of the Fed, if we don't invest in terms of opening up the economy by testing, tracing, treatment, if we don't honor our heroes by putting resources into states and localities, if we don't do the direct payments, put money in the pockets of the American people, direct payments as well as Unemployment Insurance, we’re going to be in a worse economic situation. And, by the way, the unemployment rate now is the worst – worse than any time since World War II.  You know, of this whole period, has been terrible and this, still, this level is still worse than any time since World War II. So, this is – [Crosstalk] Stephanie Ruhle.  Absolutely.  Of course.  Speaker Pelosi.  We have to open the economy, but it's related to health.  And again, he calls the coronavirus a ‘hoax,’ ‘It's going to disappear,’ ‘It's going to be magical,’ ‘miracle’ or something.  As I say, this virus is efficient; this President is not. Stephanie Ruhle.  As long as we have this health crisis, we're going to face this economic crisis, and we need more stimulus.  But with that stimulus, we need oversight.  The House has passed the PPP extension, which helps small businesses, but in that language, there is no specific oversight language.  And there is still no chair appointed to the Congressional Oversight Committee.  Where do we stand on this?  Because every single day, another story crosses about really questionable money given out to businesses that don't make a whole lot of sense. Speaker Pelosi.  Well, the legislation that came over to the House yesterday was from the Senate, and they would not put oversight provisions in the bill.  In our proposal, we have provisions for the data to be revealed, A, and B, a carve out of 25 percent for small businesses ten employees and under.  They wouldn't go to that place.  The Republicans in the House would not give us unanimous consent to add that to the bill.  They also stood in the way of us having a truth bill when we did PPP before, when we extended the period.  And they stood in the way of our getting that.  But it is in the Heroes legislation, the need for the data. Now, a couple of days ago in the Financial Services Committee hearing, the Chair of the Small Business Committee, Nydia Velázquez, held the Secretary of Treasury accountable, and he said he would give us some data by Friday.  But they've been saying, ‘by Friday’ week in and week out. Why are they not revealing the facts?  And again, in previous legislation as well as in The Heroes Act, we have a call, a demand, a requirement that they reveal on a daily basis, on a weekly basis, on a regular basis the amounts, the number of loans and also the data as to who was getting this.  In addition to that, I think it's really important to your point about the chair, we have come to agreement over who the chair is.  It is now awaiting the final approval in the Senate.  But for a long time now, we have agreed.  And that's really important – an important point that you make.  I think people will be proud of the decision that we've made. Stephanie Ruhle.  Who is it? Speaker Pelosi.  Let me just say one more thing. We also, in the House, appointed our Committee on the Coronavirus to see where this money is going, chaired by Mr. Clyburn.  So, every Thursday, they have a hearing pursuing the facts in all of this as to where this money is going, how it is spent.  Stephanie Ruhle.  Okay, hold on a second.  They have a hearing every week, but every single day, we ask the Treasury and the SBA for all of the information about PPP, including the tiniest of loans, and we're not getting it.  Your fellow Congresswoman Katie Porter is calling on the head of the SBA to step down because of malpractice.  Do you agree with her?  Speaker Pelosi.  I think the President should step down because of dereliction of duty.  Stephanie Ruhle.  Okay, he's not going to do that.  Speaker Pelosi.  But the fact is the committees of jurisdiction, Small Business, Nydia Velázquez, Financial Services, Maxine Waters, have been on this case all along.  And it is the responsibility, after all is said and done, of the Secretary of the Treasury to honor the spirit and the letter of the law of our support for small businesses.  And we have in our bill extending until December 31st.  So, we recognize that more time is needed.  They go to August 8th, a recognition that we must pass The Heroes Act so that all of this, with the reporting and the rest, takes place.  It's no use sluffing off an employee of the President; it’s holding the President of the United States accountable for this.  And the top person in that regard is the Secretary of the Treasury who says we'll get the numbers by this Friday.  As I said earlier, that's an every Friday kind of thing, but you're absolutely right. And you know, when we ask about this in relation to data, in relationship to small business or in relationship to the coronavirus and the undue impact that it has on communities of color, and we say, ‘We want the data,’ and they say, ‘Do you know how hard it is to do that?’  So, we want the data.  And so if we don't have that transparency, if we don't have the evidence-based decision making about what has worked and how we go forward, we're doing a great disservice and not being as effective as we need to be. As I've said, this virus which is having a terrible toll on our economy and more importantly on the health of the American people is a very effective, very efficient, deadly virus.  I wish the President were efficient as well. Stephanie Ruhle.  Wow.  Well, thank you so much for joining us.  Thank you for sharing your thoughts this morning, Speaker Pelosi.  Speaker Pelosi.  My pleasure.  Thank you.  Thank you, Stephanie.