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tv   Campaign 2020 Joe Biden Remarks on Reopening Schools in the Pandemic  CSPAN  September 2, 2020 10:25pm-11:09pm EDT

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with your phone calls, facebook comments, text messages, and tweets. 10joe biden spoke in willing -- in wilmington 10, delaware. he called on president trump to provide emergency funding. mr. biden: good afternoon, folks. welcome to the queen theater. i'm here today to talk about a crisis. a crisis being felt across the united states of america. and jill and i have just been briefed, as you know, in this room by our public health and education experts about what it is going to take to be able to
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reopen schools safely and effectively. back-to-school has always been a special time. it is in your family and mine, but particularly in mine, all the years jill and i were married, she was going back to school, too, as a teacher. she would be the first one to tell you this should be a season of promise for our country. times when classrooms are crackling with the possibilities of the new year, students' hopes, all about the future. but this year, we are facing the most difficult circumstances. we are seeing a lot of heart and grit from our educators, our students, to try to rise to the occasion. but our government has not come up to that bar. hasn't shown much grit or determination.
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to be clear, if president trump and his administration had done their jobs early on with this crisis, american schools would be open and open safely. instead, american families across this country are paying the price for his failures and his administration's failures. like many of you, because you are reporters, you have friends, children, you're probably hearing the same thing i have been hearing. they are struggling to figure out how to do the right thing. they are worried. they are worried like the devil. what does it mean for my kids? is this setting my child's education back beyond just a semester? what impact will it have? how is my child going to catch up? what if i am not doing enough to help my child succeed? all those questions, the self-doubt has been engaged. president trump may not think this is a national emergency.
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but i think going back to school, for millions of children and the impacts on families in the community, is a national emergency. i believe that is what it is. protecting our students, our educators, communities, getting our schools open safely and effectively, this is a national emergency. but president trump still does not have any real plan for how to open our schools safely. no real plan for how to help parents feel secure for their children. he is offering nothing but failure and delusions, start to finish, american families and children are paying the price for his failures. failure to take this virus seriously early on in january, february, as it spread around the globe. failure to take steps we needed in march and april to get this pandemic under control, to institute widespread testing and tracing to control the spread. failure to provide clear,
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national, science-based guidelines to state and local authorities. and failure to model even basic responsibility like socially distancing and wearing a mask. and failure to make sure educators and administrators have the equipment, resources, and training needed to open safely under circumstances we find now. donald trump and betsy devos have not stepped up. we are all seeing the results. millions of students are starting a new school year in the same way they finished the last one, at home. at home. parents are doing their best, but more and more are finding themselves at wit's end, struggling to balance work, childcare, and education duties. or worrying about their loss paycheck and how they will make ends meet while trying to keep
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their kids on track with remote learning. educators are taking on countless hours of additional training to learn how to use remote learning tools so they can still be there for their students, but they are worried about all the kids who used to count on our schools. all those children who needed so badly, particularly those who need more than education. they provide meals and safe places to spend the day. you now, we are all concerned about making sure covid-19 doesn't further exacerbate disparities, the disparities that already have existed in our educational system. for so many poor children, so many communities of color, it is unacceptable. and it cannot go on like this. we all want our schools to reopen safely. with a plan that prioritizes health of students and educators and staff.
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i laid out my plans back in june and july, a roadmap for how to reopen safely and effectively. you can read them by going to we need straightforward, common-sense solutions. but trump refuses to act, starving schools of the needed funding, funding they need now. now! they needed it beginning of the summer. now trump's fema director is cutting schools loose. just yesterday, fema announced, after helping three districts -- i think it was three -- they will not help pay for cloth masks, ppe for school settings, cleaning. those basic health needs. sanitizing everything from laboratories to classrooms. and safety costs for school that do not qualify for emergency assistance. this is an emergency, mr.
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president. this is an emergency. and donald trump and his fema should treat it as one. if i were president today, i would direct fema to make sure our kids k-12 get full access to disaster relief and emergency assistance under the stafford act. i would make sure ppe and sanitation supplies qualify as emergency protective measures, which is a phrase they use, to fully be eligible for federal assistance. on top of that, i would be working with the leaders of congress now, today, to pass emergency packages for schools so they would have resources they need in order to be able to open safely. money for ventilation. i heard that a lot when i have those health-care experts up on the zoom. money for ventilation and other health measures, but also more money to hire more teachers.
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every recommendation we got was they should be divided into pods, smaller classes. smaller classes mean more educators are needed. keeping classes socially distanced, small. money for more psychologists and counselors. i introduced legislation a long time ago calling for -- i proposed legislation a long time ago -- we have one school psychologist every 1507 children in the school. and the health care, the mental health our children need now. the anxiety they are feeling at home, going to school, not being able to go to school. the nation's superintendents of schools have estimated they need at least $200 billion to support k-12 schools throughout the year for safe reopening.
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we need the money to hire educators as well for our four-year colleges and universities, community colleges, hbcu's, minority serving institutions. democratic leaders are ready to get this done. they have already proposed legislation. mr. president, where are you? where are you? why aren't you working on this? we need emergency support support funding for schools and we need it now. mr. president, that is your job. that is your job. that is what you should be focused on now. getting our kids back to school safely, keeping schools safely able to remain open once they open. not whipping up fear and division, not inciting violence in our streets. get off twitter, and start talking to the congressional leaders from both parties. invite them to the oval office. the oval office.
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boast about -- you always talk about your ability to negotiate. negotiate a deal. eight deal for somebody other than yourself. now i'm happy to take questions you may have. i guess staff is going to call on whoever, fire away. >> thank you, mr. vice president. two quick questions for you if i may. ahead of your trip to kenosha, wisconsin, your running mate senator harris said the officer who shot jacob blake, based on what she has seen, should be charged. do you believe that and do you
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feel that the same should be involved in the death of breonna taylor? mr. biden: i think the judicial system should work its way. there is a minimum need to be charged, the officers, as well as in breonna taylor. i think what happened in portland where one of the trump guys riding along in vans and shooting rubber bullets or paint balls and someone was shot by someone in the crowd with a bullet, killed. i think that person should meet the legal requirements and what that calls for, should be investigated and followed through on what needs to be done. let the judicial system work. let's make sure justice is done. >> quickly on a different topic there is a new book by "new york times" that said when president trump made a visit to walter reed, vice president pence was told to be on standby in case of president trump had to receive
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anesthesia and vice president pence said he did not recall being told that. as vice president, were you told to be on standby or any kind of special alert when president obama was going in for a medical appointment and any concerns that walter reed visit that president trump made did not follow prior protocol about presidential visits for medical examinations. mr. biden: i'm not going to speculate. nothing this administration does is normal. i'm not being facetious. who in god's name knows what this is all about? i don't know. and i'm not going to speculate. i will let the experts do that. and so the only time that i have been on notice is when the president is out of the country and i'm in the country, not that i should wait for something that
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i need to immediately be aware of anything, but that's something that might be called for. it wasn't called for. reporter: on your visit to kenosha tomorrow, local democratic officials including the governor had discouraged president trump from visiting and yesterday, the president of the local naacp said they didn't want to see either candidate visit. since this is such a sensitive situation. why is now the right time for you to go to kenosha and what do you hope to accomplish tomorrow? mr. biden: i have an outstanding call with the governor and dealt with staff because it has been overwhelming requests that i do
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, because what we want to do is heal, bring people together. is to doe in going just that, be a positive influence on what is going on, talk about what needs to be done, and start to see if there is the beginning of a mechanism to bring folks together. we have to heal. this is about making sure we move forward. so, i have got advice from city members of the congress, the senate go as well. meet withoing to community leaders as well as business people and other folks in law enforcement and start to talk about what needs to be done. i am not going to tell kenosha what they need to do. is that the president's
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current people are going to justat to their corners is a mistake. i spent my whole life including this city, bringing people together and bringing people and police officers together and business leaders and civic leaders together. that's my purpose in going. reporter: the fact that you are traveling to wisconsin at all, this is only the third time in the last few months that you will be on a plane. you have talked about how you want to make sure you follow the advice of your doctors in terms of campaigning safely but the question is why aren't you out there more. the president was calling your campaign schedule today? how are you willing to push it to get your message out and be among the voters at speak to them directly? mr. biden: my message is getting out based on the polling data
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shows and the millions of people who have watched what i have to say and the circumstance in which i have said it. i would like to get out more. but a president has the responsibility to set the right example how to go out and not go out and not wear a mask and not have large crowds of people not wearing masks or being a significant outbreaks of covid. and so what i have done is i have met with the -- via -- what i did this morning with the medical experts. and so, we have worked out a protocol how i get in the plane, what kind of a plane, how it is sanitized, how i engage people like i engage with all of you. it is always at a safe distance and everyone is wearing masks and vast majority of people i'm meeting with have come into my
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home, staff and the like, they are all tested as well. i'm just trying to set the example and wearing the protective gear, a mask, which i have with me. i'm able at this distance to take it off, number one. number two, make sure we proceed in with social distancing. and to do it the right way. reporter: they announced the moderators of the presidential debates. nbc's kristen welker. batting cleanup for the last debate. is there anything that could dissuade you and how have you begun to prepare? mr. biden: i have begun to prepare by going over what the president has said and multiple lies he has told. what i would love to have is a crawler at the bottom of the screen, a fact checker when we speak. if we wanted to do something. that would make a great, great
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if everything both of us said was instantly fact-checked by an agreed-to group of people. but that probably wouldn't get far in the debate. i'm looking forward to debating the president and i'm going to lay out as clearly as i can what i think we have to do is bring this country back and build it back better, and i'm looking forward to debate. reporter: thank you, mr. vice president. one of the things that i have heard a lot from voters is that a lot of them are worried and concerned about the ongoing violence including the situation in kenosha, wisconsin. i'm curious, you are not president now but donald trump is, but if you were president, what would you do to ensure that people are kept safe?
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>> first of all, i wouldn't incite violence and condemn it when it occurs. the vast majority of police officers are good, honest, decent men and women. they have the right to go home that night safely, the vast majority. but just those who are not good cops, all the police i have dealt with my whole life and i have been dealing with -- i have gotten overwhelming support from law enforcement throughout my whole career. they want to get rid of the bad cops because it reflects bad on them. number two, i would make sure that any violence, any violence, protesting is a right and free speech is a right. but to engage in violence, burning, looting and the rest in the name of protesting is wrong. and the person should be held accountable for their actions. and so what i would be doing i would be bringing people together in the white house
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right now and having that police commission set up and law enforcement at the table and have the community at the table and have people and saying, how do we get through this? because i believe the vast majority of the community at large as well as law enforcement want toll straighten things out, not inflame things. but this president keeps throwing gasoline on the fire every place he goes. i noticed -- i didn't watch much of it but i watched all the reports from all of you, from the press, and you know, when he was asked what should be done with regard to a young man shot in the back seven times in front of his children, i didn't hear anything. and went on down the line. i wish he would take responsibility. as much as he would like to be running against somebody else, he is running against me, joe
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biden, and the fact he is not acting very responsibly. you have outlined your plan to reopen schools safely but what happens in the interim? right now, millions of parents are facing this very impossible task of trying to work full-time and help their children full-time to learn virtually. what is your message to these parents and what can you do to help them? mr. biden: help is on the way. i have laid out a plan for child care, a plan for early education as well, so 3, 4, and five-year-olds are in school. but i'm not president right now. what we should be doing is providing for more help for
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people who are in fact trying to juggle the choice between do i stay home with my three, four, five-year-old, and take care of them in the middle of this covid problem, or do i go to work or earn a salary? what do i do? i have a major initiative to deal with child care and elder care, so people can be paid to take care of children as well as the elderly, a parent -- a husband or wife may be taking care of. as well as making sure those folks are able to get back to work. that is why focusing on day care centers and making sure they are safe and healthy now are as equally important as dealing with schools. and we should be providing all of the p.p.e. and all of the safety that is necessary to allow them to open. hundreds have been opened because some states have gone in
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and done that. there should be universal guidance coming from the president of the united states of america and should be basic standards to how, in fact and what circumstance you can open a safely a day care or child care center. the idea that this has brought home a number of glaring problems we have in america, this whole pandemic and what has happened in terms of jobs. the idea that we are in a situation where we have so many parents who have to make the difficult choice as a single parent or both working parents to decide whether one gives up their salary and stay home with a child under the age of five or six and/or leaves them with somebody that is not particularly qualified and goes to work so they can earn a living is a choice we shouldn't be making. we are the most industrialized country in the world that forces people to make that kind of
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choice. paydy should be forced to 7% of their income to provide for child care and be able to go to work. this is something that is a major element of my build back better program. in the meantime, the most important thing to be done is have c.d.c. issue straightforward guidelines under what circumstances you should be able to open up your daycare center or child care center now. and there should be clear standards and states should have the wherewithal to go out and inspect those facilities now. but one thing i haven't mentioned and warrants mentioning, you know, one of the things we did, remember when we inherited the great recession and we were going into the tank heading off the cliff heading into a depression, i was able to convince three republicans to change their vote and ended up
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with the recovery act which spent $800 billion. it cap best from going in -- it kept us from going into a depression. what did we do? we spent billions of dollars making sure that states were able to maintain their essential workers. everyone from the fire department, their school teachers, their doctors, nurses, public hospitals. now what's happening? this republican administration will not support that and the republican leadership in the united states senate will not support it. so what's happening? we don't have that help. it's not out here and states are in real trouble and to quote my good friend mitch mcconnell, he said let the states go bankrupt. states have to balance their budgets under the law. there is a reason why the federal government is able to run a deficit, to compensate in times of real economic crisis. and what's happening? nothing.
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nothing. and guess what? we came out of that recession with the longest spurt of economic growth of any administration in american history. but these guys -- i could go on. businesses, look at the money that was passed under the cares act for businesses. small businesses to be able to stay open. we have tens of thousands going out of business. why? because the money didn't get to small businesses. they are not open. we should be dealing with those businesses that have been burnt out and damaged. we should be providing federal help for those businesses to get back on their feet. this administration seems to think it's going to go away like angel dust is going to be spread around. i just don't get it. they have to know better. they have to know better. and we had an example in the last administration how much
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good you can do and how much growth can you general rate. i don't get these guys. not a joke. i have been doing this a long time but never seen a president lack as much leadership, inability to make a deal and i'm told the reason they can't get anything done in the republican congress is 20 members of the united states senate saying under no circumstances will they raise the deficit at all. that's wonderful. and we are in a position right now. look at other countries, doing one hell of a lot better and up to 186,000 people dead, 6 million, 300,000 that have contracted the disease. no end in sight. it's just irresponsible. talk about a no-nothing congress on the republican side. no-nothing president. i don't get it. i don't get it.
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it's going to change come january, god willing. reporter: what do you say to the teachers that are afraid to return to the classroom even if the protocols you propose are in place? mr. biden: i say that i understand their concern because so many of the teachers have pre-existing conditions that lend itself to the fact that if they were to contract covid-19 that they would be susceptible to be in real trouble. it is understanding why they are doing it. but the first thing to do is to make sure that all the protective capacity that we have available to us is made available and then make choices about whether or not let the districts make choices about whether or not they open fully and rotate and whether or not those teachers are able to teach from home and remote learning. but it's really understandable.
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look, look at what has happened in this covid crisis so far. 100,000 people have died who are above the age of 65. 100 and some out of the 180,000. the estimates range up to significant universities, one is going to be as many as 239 and other one said 312. i don't know that, but it's going to go higher. so i just don't understand why it's a political problem. what is the politics about not being willing to go in and help provide the protective capacity for people to be able to go back to work and go to school. i can't fathom it.
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reporter: thank you, mr. vice president. you talked today about reopening schools. i want to ask you about something you said last week, the potential of having to shut down the economy again. you were asked if you were going to shut it down if your health experts proposed and you said -- health experts advised you to do so and you said you would listen to the scientists. i am curious how you would do that at a federal level and how you would balance that call to shut down if your economic advisers saying, if you do it again, you could plunge the country into a deeper economic crisis. mr. biden: well, look, i have been saying this since last january.
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the idea that you are able to get the economy back on track without getting covid under control is completely counterintuitive, it's not there and can't have it. -- and can't happen. unless we are able to deal with the disease and drastically its impact on people's confidence to either go to work or walk into a business or do business, then it doesn't matter a lot. there is going to be no need in my view to shut down the whole economy. i was asked a question, if i was asked to shut everything down, i took that as a generic question if i'm going to follow the science. i am going to insist and insist now without any authority that every responsible person in this country when they are out in public or not the cohort they have lived with because they have been spreading to their wife or husband, that they wear
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a mask and wear a mask. you can take the mask off when you are 12, 15 feet away. i would follow, i would really make the case -- and by the way, when i find these folks talking about my freedom, i talk about patriotism. why do you wear a mask? to protect your neighbor, to keep someone else from getting sick and maybe dying. i call that patriotic. this is the united states of america. every generation has made sacrifices to help others in moments of crises. reporter: you suggest there would be some kind of federal mandate about masks? mr. biden: no. no. what i suggested was, i would ask every person in authority, there's a question whether the president under the constitution could mandate that everyone
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could wear a mask. during the primary, people were telling me, i would by executive order do. i'm a constitutionalist. you can't do things that the constitution doesn't allow you to do. what i would be doing is putting as much pressure as i could on every governor, every mayor, county executive and local official and everyone in business to put pressure on them to say what you are doing is irresponsible. make sure you wear a mask and maintain social distancing. and the vast majority of people accept that. quicker: one more campaign question. you raised $365 million last month. a record for a monthly all, barely. how are you going to spend it? mr. biden: you want to go to dinner? [laughter] mr. biden: no.
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what i'm having to spend a lot of it on is counter the lies that are being told by my -- trump's campaign and a new p.a.c. what i am trying to do is spend most of that -- by the way, i think the average contribution was like 40 bucks. we have over 1 million, 600,000 people who contributed, between 5, 10, $15 dollars. there is enthusiasm about wanting to make sure that we i would become president of the say that shows become president of the some genuine enthusiasm about wanting to make sure we become president of the united states. and so what i will spend most of it doing is trying to explain to the american people how i want to unite the county and what i want to do to make the country better and why i'm so confident we can do it and bring the country together and be in a better position than before this crisis occurred, because there has been so many fissures exposed as a consequence of what happened, and people are saying
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i didn't know that people in that circumstance didn't have that kind of help. so we have an enormous opportunity to bring the country together. and once again, lead the world. you heard me say it 100 times not just by example of power but power of example. thank you. that -- you said that you warned president trump that there was going to be a pandemic. if you do that, then why were
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you still hosting campaign rallies in march? mr. biden: i said, you have to take this seriously. you have to insist we have forss to china to find out ourselves. to talkot continue about the president of china doing a marvelous job, doing a great job. when it got up to march, i kept saying, look -- you remember i was the first -- i think i was the first, i may be mistaken -- person calling about the defense production act. we don't have -- it's amazing, we use a phrase like p.p.e., but protective equipment and gear and ventilators. use that authority now and don't wait and don't wait to talk about the need for us to have masks. that's what i talked about and i
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began to lay out for him. we actually had a conversation. i think it was march, maybe april. in that range, and he said biden wants to help. so i talked to him and laid out what i thought should be done to reopen safely and the things we should do. he was very polite and listened and said he would think about it and that was the end of it. so what i would begin to become really clear is that as the science began to show that this was able to spread much more easily than people thought. two issues. was the pandemic coming and what's the most way that did the most damage. and as that became clearer and clearer, we concluded we can't continue to have these large rallies. think about it. here we are, rest of the world , places have done extremely well in terms of dealing with this covid crisis around the
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world. you know, we have the five largest countries in europe have a population larger than the united states of america, yet, in the month of august, losing 1,000 lives a day and losing 57 a day, all of them, combined. combined. as we learn more and did learn more and why by march and april, we knew a whole heck of a lot more, why weren't we doing what needed to be done? why are we being told we have plenty of protective gear. and one big thing that i did push a lot on was on the need for testing and tracing and moving rapidly to make sure that you had the capacity to test and trace before it got so out of control. we need to do that now. but here's the thing and i end with this and i apologize for keeping you --
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>> [indiscernible] [laughter] mr. biden: the thing that i just don't quite understand is when it's clear that some of the things that the president says are simply not true relating to this crisis. and when enormous pressure is put on professionals in the administration from the c.d.c. to n.i.h. across the board, why do we think god willing when we get a vaccine that is good, works, why do we think the public is going to line up to be able to be willing to take the injection?
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he has lost so much confidence in the american people in what's said because they are finding out again today, plasma, well, that doesn't quite work the way we said it does. hell of a lot of pressure put on that person to say that. this president has sold so many things that are untrue, that are just wrong. in order to do anything, he looks at it in one way, if the stock market is high and it's moving and we are reducing the number of people who are in real trouble economically, it doesn't matter what i say, that's the objective. that's the objective. the objective is to keep the american people safe so we can begin to get back to normal and rebuilding our economy and bringing back economic growth. thank you all very much. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2020] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit]
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is a trump: biden's record shameful roll call of the most catastrophic blunders of our lifetime. he has spent the entire career on the wrong side of history. >> our current president has failed in his most basic duty to the nation. he has failed to protect us. failed to protect americans. onfellow americans, that is -- that is unforgivable. debatefirst presidential president donald trump and former vice president joe biden is tuesday, september 29, at 9:00 p.m. eastern. watch live coverage on c-span. watch live streaming at on-demand at listen live on the c-span radio app. >> c-span's washington journal. every day, we are taking your calls live on the air on the news of the day. we will discuss policy issues that impact you. thursday morning, the florida
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agriculture and consumer services commissioner on florida and campaign 2020 and the federal response to the pandemic. president of the foundation for research on equal opportunity talks about the u.s. response to the coronavirus pandemic and the herd immunity approach. watch c-span's "washington journal," live at 7:00 eastern, thursday morning. be sure to join the discussion with your phone calls, facebook comments, text messages, and tweets. >> on thursday, president trump holds a campaign rally in pennsylvania. watch live on c-span, online at or listen live with the free c-span radio app. next, a look at the u.s.-mexico-canada trade agreement.
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house ways and means kevin brady and down buyer spoke at an event hosted by rice university's baker institute. this runs an hour. >> good morning, good afternoon, depending on where you are listening from. i am the fellow for trade and international economics at the baker institute. i am an emeritus law professor from the university of arizona. very pleased to welcome all of you. on behalf of the center for the u.s. and mexico at baker, at rice. this is a first of our five the implementation of the united states-mexico trade agreement usmca, which as , everyone knows entered into force about two months ago on july 1.


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