DPCC Co-Chair Jeffries: We Have An Affirmative Economic Agenda For the American People
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, Co-Chair of the House Democratic Policy & Communications Committee (DPCC), appeared on CNN’s At This Hour with Kate Bolduan to discuss A Better Deal: Better Jobs, Better Wages, Better Future – a bold, new Democratic economic agenda that was released today. Below are excerpts from the interview. Click here to watch the video.
“One is a recognition that things are broken in terms of what's happening with working family, middle class folks [and] those who aspire to be part of the middle class. Quite frankly, these folks are being screwed all across America by an economy that's not working for them, it's working for the wealthy and for the well off, that's why they deserve a better deal, better jobs, better wages and a better future. We are starting with a recognition that over the last 40 years the productivity of the American worker has increased by more than 285 percent. During that same period of time, wages increased by less than 10 percent. The productivity gains of the American worker are not going to the American worker, we are going to aggressively deal with that issue and confront wage stagnation, we are going to aggressively promote job creation and economic growth, we have a target of ten million jobs and we are going to work hard to lower the cost that the American people are experiencing, such as the out of control prescription drug prices.”
“I have every confidence in both Leader Pelosi and Senator Schumer to help bring things home in the way they brought things home in 2006. There is a new generation of members of Congress all across the country, the north, the south, the east and the west, reflecting the gorgeous mosaic of the American people who will also be carrying this message forward. There was a phenomenal amount that was done in a limited two year window, first of all, we rescued the economy from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, that was step one. We enacted historic health care legislation, the Affordable Care Act that dramatically has improved things for the American people, Dodd-Frank reform…and some criminal justice reform as well that was important to African-Americans and others in the inner city. There was only a limited two-year window. Then, of course, Republicans took control in 2010. We are not going to look backward, we are going to look forward. We have an affirmative economic agenda for the American people that is going to increase their pay, lower their cost and make sure that every single American has the tools for the 21st century economy.”
“The overall majority of Democrats that I work with understand there is a cloud of illegitimacy that is hanging over the White House as a result of the possibility that there was improper or illegal collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. We have a Special Prosecutor who is in place, Bob Mueller, very well respected by Democrats and Republicans, people on the left and people on the right. We should allow that investigation to take shape and deal aggressively with the economic problems facing the American people. This has always been a country that has rewarded hard work and those who play by the rules, but for far too many Americans that fundamental contract has been broken, we recognize that, that's why the American people deserve a better deal. That's what Democrats are going to deliver.”
“You have five million people who are out of the work force who would like to get back into the work force. You have another five million Americans who are working part-time, even though they would like to find full-time employment. That's one of the reason why we are targeting ten million jobs in terms of good paying jobs that will allow people to provide for themselves and their families a comfortable way of life. Things are moving in the right direction, largely as a result of the leadership of President Barack Obama. We still have a long way to go. Wage stagnation is a problem, under employment is a problem, the high cost of a college education is a problem, the fact the pension system is eroding in many parts of the country, particularly the industrial Midwest, that is a problem. We have solutions to deal with those issues, we recognize the contract with the American people connected to the American dream has been broken, that's why they deserve a better deal, better jobs, better wages and a better future. We are going to deliver that.”