Sens. Durbin, Corker on chances for budget 'grand bargain'
Key lawmakers on 'Fox News Sunday'
- Duration 13:50
- Date Mar 17, 2013
Key lawmakers on 'Fox News Sunday'
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Hello again and happy Saint Patrick's Day from Fox News in Washington.
The president that -- Republicans and Democrats in both the house and senate this way.
But for all the talk about grand bargain there was no sign the two parties are any closer to bridging the divide over our nation's -- We want to discuss the chances for a deal with two key senators.
Dick Durbin the Senate's number two Democrat joins us from Chicago.
Tennessee Republican Bob Parker is in -- -- -- Development while the president was meeting with members of congress top house Republicans and senate Democrats.
Put out there budget plans which -- dramatic differences.
Let's take a look at them.
The GOP -- would cut the deficit four point six trillion dollars over ten years all through spending cuts.
The democratic plan would cut the deficit one point eight trillion.
-- was spending cuts and half through tax hikes.
Senator -- let me start -- -- will senate Republicans -- a tax increase if you get serious entitlement reform and -- Well tonight senate Republicans and our Republicans want to see a 75 years solution to entitlements and I think Republicans are going didn't -- to -- wanting to see tax reform so.
To the extent that generates revenues and how that scored obviously that will be debated as we move ahead but I think all of us understand.
The real issue driving the deficits that we have -- our country are the entitlements and that's what we wanna see saw we want to see these available for generations.
Generations to come but just real quickly you understand the price for entitlement reform in any deal would be a tax increase.
Would you buy that and what do you think -- the prospects that -- -- -- deal sometime before the summer.
Well again I think I think -- by the way is a chance on Monday on how the president is saying the right things and we have an opportunity over the next four or five months I think that you know we'll know.
When the president is serious by virtue of a process a set up where he is actually at the table or whether he has they designate.
And whether he begins to say publicly to the American people to all Americans that.
He understands that Americans are only paying 13 of the cost of Medicare and that has to change for the pro going to be here now on the road but look Chris.
I think -- I think Republicans if they -- -- and -- -- reform.
Would be glad to look at tax reform that generates additional revenues and that doesn't mean increasing right.
That means closing loopholes that also means.
Arranging our tax system so that we have economic growth and I think we've been -- that from -- -- well senator Durbin I heard some -- there from senator Parker let me ask you.
Our senate Democrats willing to make serious -- reforms to entitlements.
If you get out and tax revenue and what do you think that the prospects for a grant park.
-- Chris let me tell you I think Bob just gave an honest and constructive answer.
It really eat what he articulated is what we did in the polls and Simpson commission.
And what we've done ever since we said let's put everything on the table I want to thank Bob for saying it.
We've got to of course pass this budget resolution in the senate.
Patty Murray's done extraordinarily good job and then we're gonna move to the next stage and that is the grand bargain stage that's what the president is trying to set -- Both sides sitting down on a bipartisan basis.
Not eliminating Medicare is I'm afraid the Paul Ryan budget would do but making sure that it's going to survive for generations to come.
Putting revenues on the table that are fair and won't penalize the working people across America.
And making sure it's a balanced approach I think what Bob -- just sent from his side.
Is a basic set of principles that both parties can relative.
And does real specifically because I -- -- -- down on this are you saying that you would accept.
Structural changes -- -- -- not doing away with Medicare but structural changes and cuts to -- Let me just tell you what we're facing in 1012 years Medicare goes broke that's unacceptable.
We want to make sure that Medicare is there for generations to come and that means making some reforms and some constructive changes.
The Paul Ryan voucher approach is destructive of Medicare it won't survive millions of Americans will lose their benefits but there are ways to approach it.
To reduce the cost of medical care and still keep our promise to seniors across America.
Part of the problem in this debate is that the parties it seemed to be disagreeing about the importance of dealing with our national -- I want I want apply.
What President Obama said this week and also what he said back as a candidate into the tonight take a look.
We don't have an immediate crisis in terms of -- -- -- for the next ten years.
It's going to be in a sustainable place.
We now have over nine trillion dollars of debt.
Debt that we are gonna have to -- back.
30000 dollars for every man woman and child.
It's unpatriotic and.
When candidate Obama said that our national -- was nine trillion it's now sixteen trillion.
So the question is if it was unpatriotic at nine trillion.
Is it sustainable at sixteen trillion.
Chris here's the good news we've reduced the long term deficit.
By about 2.4 trillion dollars that's included only 600 billion dollars in new revenue this part of the fiscal cliff.
We still have to do more but we've taken the edge off the crisis I'll concede that what the president is pointing to -- us we need strong economic recovery.
We need to put Americans back to work that's our first priority deficit reduction I would put as the second priority and one that is coupled with economic growth.
So I think we can do both.
Make sure we have deficit reduction but don't cut too much too fast.
Take for example sequestration.
American jobs will be lost this is not the right thing to do not the right time to do it.
We've got to face -- -- sequence it so that we do have economic growth and Americans paying taxes.
That really helps us recover senator -- some Democrats and you just heard this.
Sort of from Dick Durbin but I've heard it in more extreme forms from other Democrats say it's more important.
To have economic growth -- than to deal with the national debt your response.
Well I think we should have economic growth and obviously we'd like to see that happen and I think reducing the deficit helps create economic growth so.
Look at I think it's ridiculous to say that cutting one point two trillion dollars over the next decade when we're gonna spend 47 trillion dollars of your money.
Is is that a step too far of course we need to do that and on top of that we need to build towards season -- reforms.
Which obviously are -- the huge debt down the road but look I think it was disappointing to all of us.
To have the president comment and talking the way that he -- bother why attended the dinner I've been on the phone calls I've met with the White House and I appreciate the outrage.
But in the midst of that to act as if this deficit issue is not that important.
Was a little disheartening but I do think Chris again I think we've got the best opportunity we're gonna have.
Under this president over the next four months to solve this problem.
And I look forward to working with Dick Durbin and others as we try to build on the commonalities.
That we have we have a lot of things that separate -- But there is enough commonality here I think to build off of that it's the most important thing we can do for our nation's economic growth and our long term security.
And that's what we need to be focused.
Well before we move on because you know I am getting that kind of hopeful sense from both of you and I just wanna pick up -- just button this up quickly with you senator Durbin.
Do you agree that this is the last best chance for our.
A big deal and how optimistic are you would that you're going to be able to pull it off between now and months and mid summer.
Listen if you're -- senator you have to be patient.
But I've been at this for years and this is an excellent opportunity.
But both sides have to come together and I think -- -- said well I've tried to say this morning is.
There -- elements -- this that we can all agree on a bipartisan basis.
I think when the president is trying to do is not a charm offensive but basically say the Republican I'm serious about this I will sit down with you and obviously work.
To come up with -- and board and let's not miss this opportunity.
But before you DL red lit it up tonight.
That had senator.
But I gonna say one thing I think we're all gonna know again.
When the president is serious.
Will be when he began using the podium to explain to the American people that the average American families only paying 13 of the cost of Medicare.
When he began to lay that out from his -- I've -- Sam that for years and -- department's been saying that for some time.
But when the president uses his bully pulpit to explain to the American people that the -- that families are only paying 13 of the cost of Medicare we will all know.
That we've begun the process of trying to solve this problem I hope that happens as soon as he gets back from Israel.
All right gentlemen before you deal with the budget you -- more pressing problem and that is a you have to pass a continuing resolution.
Before march 27 and you're going on recess at the end of this -- To keep the government running otherwise it shuts down and the question senator Durbin is.
Will the senate.
Pass a CR -- continuing resolution they keep spending at 984.
Which is what the spending level is of the house -- up the house CR.
Including the -- -- Chris what I left Washington on Thursday.
We had 99 amendments pending.
To this continuing resolution the budget for the federal government 99 amendments six of the amendments were on the issue of our relationship with Egypt.
This is all over important I understand.
But we have work to be done in just a short period of time I urge my senate colleagues let's -- -- in the amendments let's get to see our past we can do it we can do it quickly this coming week.
-- direct question would you accept will you pass a CR 984 billion which is the house level that includes the -- in this of buster times.
Listen we have we have put together.
The C -- that is acceptable in its in its dollar terms.
To the House of Representatives and I think we can agree on what -- -- All right gentlemen we're running out Tom -- -- asking each about a a question of a something you're involved and senator Durbin.
You're part of this bipartisan senate group that is working on immigration reform.
Are you gonna be able to come off with a plan that creates a pathway to citizenship for the eleven million illegals were now in this country.
And if so when he got to put the plan on the table.
We're working literally hours every week for Democrats four Republicans.
And we're making progress there are still some tough tough issues out there.
But I feel good about it there's a feeling in that room that we have a responsibility to this nation after 25 years to write an immigration law.
That we can live with for generations to come.
What's the biggest problem.
Well -- several problems -- you know we're dealing with border enforcement which is very important to Republican side of the table.
We're dealing with the question of the eleven million people paying their taxes.
Having a path to legalization and then ultimately to citizenship tough issues but we're coming together and I think we can do it I have a positive feeling.
And finally senator -- -- -- the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee added this week on Friday the Pentagon announced.
They're going to deploy fourteen additional.
Missile interceptors to Alaska to deal with the potential nuclear -- -- From North Korea what do you think -- the idea how serious do you think there's the threat from the North Korean regime.
And are we paying a price for the fact that President Obama scaled back on missile defense when he came into office.
Kabul look I applaud the efforts I -- the Senator -- and I know we have a group heading off to Poland.
On Monday to talk about this further I I applauded as I mentioned that they hopeful focused on base all on the eastern side with radar facilities.
And I think the question as Chris how does the not deployment of the fourth phase of our European based system affect us over time so there's some technical issues that we're going to be getting into this week with the Pentagon and the State Department but certainly -- think most all of us applaud the efforts to beef up.
Our missile defense on the West Coast do you think that that Kim Jong-un and the north Koreans are -- real threat to the US.
I don't think that threat is -- -- -- and I don't think they have the delivery mechanisms that are necessary to really harmless but I think it's really good that we're taken those precautionary measures to make sure that they cannot be damage I think it puts us on a place.
A different place as it relates to negotiating with them and at the end of the day Chris.
I know there's a lot of talk six party talks not all kind of things that are crying.
-- -- all of us understand the key -- this is going to be China.
They're the ones that can actually affect the behavior of North Korea because of the trade issues and and certainly -- support issues coming from China.
And -- North Korea right hopefully China sees the threat to -- nuclear proliferation and that part of the world.
In the event they're not able to stop what North Korea's doing senator -- senator Durbin thank you both we're gonna have to leave it there thank you for talking with us -- no doubt.
There's some tough bargaining ahead on the budget thank you gentlemen.