Full Text Political Transcripts March 16, 2017: President Donald Trump’s First Budget 2018 FY

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

TRUMP PRESIDENCY & 115TH CONGRESS:

America First – A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again

Estimate #1—FY 2017 Appropriations Request:  Department of Defense to rebuild the U.S. Armed Forces and accelerate the campaign to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, and Department of Homeland Security for urgent border protection activities.

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Full Text Obama Presidency February 2, 2015: President Barack Obama’s Speech Unveiling the FY2016 Budget

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 114TH CONGRESS:

Remarks by the President on the FY2016 Budget

Source: WH, 2-2-15

Department of Homeland Security
Washington, D.C.

11:27 A.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you so much.  (Applause.)  Thank you, everybody.  Please, have a seat.  Well, good morning, everybody.   It is good to be here at the Department of Homeland Security.  And let me thank Jeh Johnson not only for the outstanding job that’s he’s doing as Secretary of DHS, but also for a short introduction.  I like short introductions.  (Laughter.)  Give him a big round of applause.  (Applause.)

This is a great way to start the week, because I get to do something I enjoy doing, which is saying thank you.  Nobody works harder to keep America safe than the people who are gathered here today.  And you don’t get a lot of attention for it — that’s the nature of the job.  But I know how vital you are, and I want to make that sure more Americans know how vital you are.  Because against just about every threat that we face — from terrorist networks to microscopic viruses to cyber-attacks to weather disasters — you guys are there.  You protect us from threats at home and abroad, by air and land and sea.  You safeguard our ports, you patrol our borders.  You inspect our chemical plants, screen travelers for Ebola, shield our computer networks, and help hunt down criminals around the world.  You have a busy agenda, a full plate.  And here at home, you are ready to respond to any emergency at a moment’s notice.

It is simply extraordinary how much the Department of Homeland Security does every single day to keep our nation, our people safe.  It’s a critical job, and you get it done without a lot of fanfare.  And I want to make sure that you have what you need to keep getting the job done.  Every American has an interest in making sure that the Department of Homeland Security has what it needs to achieve its mission — because we are reliant on that mission every single day.

Now, today, I’m sending Congress a budget that will make sure you’ve got what you need to achieve your mission.  It gives you the resources you need to carry out your mission in a way that is smart and strategic, and makes the most of every dollar.  It’s also a broader blueprint for America’s success in this new global economy.  Because after a breakthrough year for America — at a time when our economy is growing and our businesses are creating jobs at the fastest pace since the 1990s, and wages are starting to rise again — we’ve got some fundamental choices to make about the kind of country we want to be.

Will we accept an economy where only a few of us do spectacularly well?  Or are we going to build an economy where everyone who works hard has a chance to get ahead?

And that was the focus of my State of the Union Address a couple weeks ago — what I called middle-class economics.  The idea that this country does best when everybody gets a fair shot, and everybody is doing their fair share, and everybody plays by the same set of rules.

The budget that Congress now has in its hands is built on those values.  It helps working families’ paychecks go farther by treating things like paid sick leave and childcare as the economic priorities that they are.  It gives Americans of every age the chance to upgrade their skills so they can earn higher wages, and it includes my plan to make two years of community college free for responsible students.  It lets us keep building the world’s most attractive economy for high-wage jobs, with new investments in research, and infrastructure and manufacturing, as well as expanded access to faster Internet and new markets for goods made in America.

It’s also a budget that recognizes that our economy flourishes when America is safe and secure.  So it invests in our IT networks, to protect them from malicious actors.  It supports our troops and strengthens our border security.  And it gives us the resources to confront global challenges, from ISIL to Russian aggression.

Now, since I took office, we have cut our deficits by about two-thirds.  I’m going to repeat that, as I always do when I mention this fact, because the public oftentimes, if you ask them, thinks that the deficit has shot up.  Since I took office, we have cut our deficits by about two-thirds.  That’s the fastest period of sustained deficit reduction since after the demobilization at the end of World War II.  So we can afford to make these investments while remaining fiscally responsible.  And, in fact, we cannot afford — we would be making a critical error if we avoided making these investments.  We can’t afford not to.  When the economy is doing well, we’re making investments when we’re growing.  That’s part of what keeps deficits low — because the economy is doing well.  So we’ve just got to be smarter about how we pay for our priorities, and that’s what my budget does.

At the end of 2013, I signed a bipartisan budget agreement that helped us end some of the arbitrary cuts known in Washington-speak as “sequestration.”  And folks here at DHS know a little too much about sequestration — (laughter) — because many of you have to deal with those cuts, and it made it a lot harder for you to do your jobs.

The 2013 agreement to reverse some of those cuts helped to boost our economic growth.  Part of the reason why we grew faster last year was we were no longer being burdened by mindless across-the-board cuts, and we were being more strategic about how we handled our federal budget.  And now we need to take the next step.  So my budget will end sequestration and fully reverse the cuts to domestic priorities in 2016.  And it will match the investments that were made domestically, dollar for dollar, with increases in our defense funding.

And just last week, top military officials told Congress that if Congress does nothing to stop sequestration, there could be serious consequences for our national security, at a time when our military is stretched on a whole range of issues.  And that’s why I want to work with Congress to replace mindless austerity with smart investments that strengthen America.  And we can do so in a way that is fiscally responsible.

I’m not going to accept a budget that locks in sequestration going forward.  It would be bad for our security and bad for our growth.  I will not accept a budget that severs the vital link between our national security and our economic security.  I know there’s some on Capitol Hill who would say, well, we’d be willing to increase defense spending but we’re not going to increase investments in infrastructure, for example, or basic research.  Well, those two things go hand in hand.  If we don’t have a vital infrastructure, if we don’t have broadband lines across the country, if we don’t have a smart grid, all that makes us more vulnerable.  America can’t afford being shortsighted, and I’m not going to allow it.

The budget I’ve sent to Congress today is fully paid for, through a combination of smart spending cuts and tax reforms.  Let me give you an example.  Right now, our tax code is full of loopholes for special interests — like the trust fund loophole that allows the wealthiest Americans to avoid paying taxes on their unearned income.  I think we should fix that and use the savings to cut taxes for middle-class families.  That would be good for our economy.

Now, I know there are Republicans who disagree with my approach.  And I’ve said this before:  If they have other ideas for how we can keep America safe, grow our economy, while helping middle-class families feel some sense of economic security, I welcome their ideas.  But their numbers have to add up.  And what we can’t do is play politics with folks’ economic security, or with our national security.  You, better than anybody, know what the stakes are.  The work you do hangs in the balance.

In just a few weeks from now, funding for Homeland Security will run out.  That’s not because of anything this department did, it’s because the Republicans in Congress who funded everything in government through September, except for this department.  And they’re now threatening to let Homeland Security funding expire because of their disagreeing with my actions to make our immigration system smarter, fairer and safer.

Now let’s be clear, I think we can have a reasonable debate about immigration.  I’m confident that what we’re doing is the right thing and the lawful thing.  I understand they may have some disagreements with me on that, although I should note that a large majority — or a large percentage of Republicans agree that we need comprehensive immigration reform, and we’re prepared to act in the Senate and should have acted in the House.  But if they don’t agree with me, that’s fine, that’s how our democracy works.  You may have noticed they usually don’t agree with me.  But don’t jeopardize our national security over this disagreement.

As one Republican put it, if they let your funding run out, “it’s not the end of the world.”  That’s what they said.  Well, I guess literally that’s true; it may not be the end of the world.  But until they pass a funding bill, it is the end of a paycheck for tens of thousands of frontline workers who will continue to get — to have to work without getting paid.  Over 40,000 Border Patrol and Customs agents.  Over 50,000 airport screeners.  Over 13,000 immigration officers.  Over 40,000 men and women in the Coast Guard.  These Americans aren’t just working to keep us safe, they have to take care of their own families.  The notion that they would get caught up in a disagreement around policy that has nothing to do with them makes no sense.

And if Republicans let Homeland Security funding expire, it’s the end to any new initiatives in the event that a new threat emerges.  It’s the end of grants to states and cities that improve local law enforcement and keep our communities safe.  The men and women of America’s homeland security apparatus do important work to protect us, and Republicans and Democrats in Congress should not be playing politics with that.

We need to fund the department, pure and simple.  We’ve got to put politics aside, pass a budget that funds our national security priorities at home and abroad, and gives middle-class families the security they need to get ahead in the new economy.  This is one of our most basic and most important responsibilities as a government.  So I’m calling on Congress to get this done.

Every day, we count on people like you to keep America secure.  And you are counting on us as well to uphold our end of the bargain.  You’re counting on us to make sure that you’ve got the resources to do your jobs safely and efficiently, and that you’re able to look after your families while you are out there working really hard to keep us safe.

We ask a lot of you.  The least we can do is have your backs.  That’s what I’m going to keep on doing for as long as I have the honor of serving as your President.  I have your back.  And I’m going to keep on fighting to make sure that you get the resources you deserve.  I’m going to keep fighting to make sure that every American has the chance not just to share in America’s success but to contribute to America’s success.  That’s what this budget is about.

It reflects our values in making sure that we are making the investments we need to keep America safe, to keep America growing, and to make sure that everybody is participating no matter what they look like, where they come from, no matter how they started in life, they’ve got a chance to get ahead in this great country of ours.  That’s what I believe.  That’s what you believe.  (Applause.)  Let’s get it done.

Thank you.  God bless you.  God bless the United States of America.  (Applause.)

END
11:43 A.M. EST

Full Text Obama Presidency March 4, 2013: President Barack Obama Speech Announces Cabinet-Level Positions for Budget Office, Environmental Protection Agency & Energy Department

POLITICAL BUZZ


OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 113TH CONGRESS:

Remarks by the President in Personnel Announcements

Source: WH, 3-4-13 

East Room

10:27 A.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT:  Good morning, everybody.  This afternoon, I’ll hold my first Cabinet meeting of my second term.  And there will be some new faces, and there will be some familiar faces in new jobs.  But there will also be some seats waiting to be filled on a permanent basis.  And today, I’m announcing my plan to nominate three outstanding individuals to help us tackle some of our most important challenges.

One of those challenges is building on the work that we’ve done to control our own energy future while reducing pollution that contributes to climate change.  And few people have played more of a role in addressing these issues than current Secretary of Energy Steven Chu.  Steven has helped us to speed the transition to more sustainable sources of energy.  He’s given more of our brightest young scientists the opportunity to pursue the ideas that will shape our future.  So I could not be more grateful to Steve for the incredible contribution that he’s made to this country.

And now that he’s decided to leave Washington for sunny California, I’m proud to nominate another brilliant scientist to take his place — Mr. Ernie Moniz.  There’s Ernie right there.  (Applause.)

Now, the good news is that Ernie already knows his way around the Department of Energy.  He is a physicist by training, but he also served as Under Secretary of Energy under President Clinton.  Since then, he’s directed MIT’s Energy Initiative, which brings together prominent thinkers and energy companies to develop the technologies that can lead us to more energy independence and also to new jobs.

Most importantly, Ernie knows that we can produce more energy and grow our economy while still taking care of our air, our water and our climate.  And so I could not be more pleased to have Ernie join us.  And he will be joined in that effort by my nominee to lead the Environmental Protection Agency.

Over the last four years, Lisa Jackson and her team at the EPA have helped us to reduce emissions of the dangerous carbon pollution that causes climate change, put in place the toughest new pollution standards in two decades.  Lisa is now ready for a well-deserved break.  And I want to very much thank Bob Perciasepe, who’s not only been a great Deputy Administrator, but has also been acting as the Acting Administrator.  So, please, Bob — everybody give Bob a big round of applause.  (Applause.)

As we move forward, I think there is nobody who can do a better job in filling Lisa’s shoes permanently than my nominee who’s standing beside me here — Gina McCarthy.  (Applause.)

Now, you wouldn’t know from talking to her, but Gina is from Boston.  (Laughter.)  And one of her proudest moments was yelling “Play ball!” at Fenway Park before a Red Sox game.  But Gina has got plenty more to be proud of.  As a top environmental official in Massachusetts and Connecticut, she helped design programs to expand energy efficiency and promote renewable energy.  As Assistant EPA Administrator, Gina has focused on practical, cost-effective ways to keep our air clean and our economy growing.  She’s earned a reputation as a straight shooter.  She welcomes different points of views.  I’m confident that she’s going to do an outstanding job leading the EPA.

So these two over here, they’re going to be making sure that we’re investing in American energy, that we’re doing everything that we can to combat the threat of climate change, that we’re going to be creating jobs and economic opportunity in the first place.  They are going to be a great team.  And these are some of my top priorities going forward.

But as President, one of the things you learn very quickly is that it’s not enough just to talk a big game; the real test is whether your priorities are reflected in a budget.  And that’s where the rubber hits the road.  That’s where my third nominee comes in.

Since I took office, Jeff Zients has served as America’s first Chief Performance Officer and the Deputy Director of the management — Director for Management of the Office of Management and Budget.  He’s made our government more efficient.  He’s saved taxpayers a lot of money.  He’s stepped in as Acting Director of OMB not once, but twice, including leading up to the fiscal cliff.  So there’s no question that Jeff’s skill and versatility have served the American people very well.  I expect it will continue to serve us well in the future.

In the meantime, I am confident that my nominee for OMB Director, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, is the right person to continue Jeff’s great work.  (Applause.)

In the 1990s, when she was, what, 19 — (laughter) — Sylvia served under Jack Lew as Deputy Director of OMB — part of a team that presided over three budget surpluses in a row.  Later, she helped the Gates Foundation grow into a global force for good, and then she helped the Walmart Foundation expand its charitable work.  So Sylvia knows her way around a budget.

But as the granddaughter of Greek immigrants, she also understands that our goal when we put together a budget is not just to make the numbers add up.  Our goal is also to reignite the true engine of economic growth in this country, and that is a strong and growing middle class — to offer ladders of opportunity for anybody willing to climb them.

Sylvia’s mom is here.  And Sylvia loves to talk about her parents growing up in West Virginia and the values that they instilled in her as educators.  And I think that reflects everything that Sylvia now does.  And so I’m absolutely confident that she’s going to do a great job at OMB.  And those values are especially important to remember now, as we continue to try and find a way forward in light of the budget cuts that are already starting to cost us jobs and hurt our economy.

As I said before, the American people are resilient.  And I know that Jeff and Sylvia will do everything in their power to blunt the impact of these cuts on businesses and middle-class families.  But eventually, a lot of people are going to feel some pain.  That’s why we’ve got to keep on working to reduce our deficit in a balanced way — an approach that’s supported by the majority of the American people, including a majority of Republicans.  And I’m confident that we can get there if people of goodwill come together.

So I want to thank Steve and Lisa and Jeff once more for their outstanding service, for all the great work that they’ve done in this administration over the last several years.  I want to thank Ernie, Gina and Sylvia, and their families, for agreeing to take on these big roles.

I hope the Senate will confirm them as soon as possible, because we’ve got a lot of work to do and we cannot afford delay. But I can promise you that as soon as the Senate gives them the go ahead, they’re going to hit the ground running and they’re going to help make America a stronger and more prosperous country.

So thank you very much, everybody.  (Applause.)

END
10:36 A.M. EST

Political Headlines March 4, 2013: President Barack Obama Announces Trio of Cabinet-Level Positions for Budget Office, Environmental Protection Agency & Energy Department

POLITICAL HEADLINES

https://historymusings.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/pol_headlines.jpg?w=600

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 113TH CONGRESS:

THE HEADLINES….

Obama Announces Trio of Cabinet-Level Positions

Source: ABC News Radio, 3-4-13

Pete Marovich/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rounding out his second-term cabinet, President Obama on Monday announced his picks to run the budget office, Environmental Protection Agency and Energy Department.

The president named Gina McCarthy, who heads the EPA’s air and radiation office, as the agency’s next administrator, MIT physicist Ernest Moniz as Energy Secretary, and Walmart’s Sylvia Matthews Burwell as his next budget director….READ MORE

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