Weekend Wake Up with Chuck & Julie, Ken Buck, June 17, 2017

Station:    KNUS, 710 am

Show:        Weekend Wake Up with Chuck & Julie

Guests:     Buck, Ken

Link:         http://knus-weekend-wakeup.podbean.com/

Date:         June 17, 2017




HOST CHUCK BONNIWELL:  Let’s go to to the man of the hour, — and just on these issues –Congressman Ken Buck. Welcome to the program, Congressman.


HOST JULIE HAYDEN:  Good morning! Hey, happy Father’s Day weekend, to you!

BUCK:  Thank you very much. [I] appreciate that.

BONNIWELL:  You’ve written a book, Drain the Swamp. It’s getting a lot of attention.  And the — one of things that you note and go through is how all the offices are bought by contributions, and it’s really — you go to the NRCC and, really – you indicate in the book, the NRCC is really just a – it’s for the leadership to continuous[ly] control. That’s really the whole point of it. But I want to go to another one, because that’s been, I think — you know, lots of folks have been able to get your views on that. I want to go to a couple of the other chapters, if you don’t mind.

BUCK:  Sure.

BONNIWELL:  Because a lot of what’s written in the book is really eye-opening and it is kind of “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington”.

HAYDEN: Yeah! Can I ask, first, I mean, have you had to get special protection unit or something like that? I mean, are you –? How has it been?

BONNIWELL:  Are you under protective custody?

HAYDEN:  Yeah, exactly?

BUCK:  You know, I have to tell you, I have the same friends I had before the book. There aren’t many of them, but I –

BONNIWELL:  [laughs] Your mom.

BUCK:  [laughs] That’s right.

BONNIWELL:  Your dog. That’s about it. Well, let’s go–.

BUCK:  No, I think some people are not pleased. But that’s okay. They need to have their world shaken up a little bit.

BONNIWELL: Well, let’s go to chapter 5, “Beating the Beltway Bullies”, in which you talk about the vote on the TPP — Transpacific Partnership — and how it was amazingly amalgamated with an increase for the trade assistance, trade adjustment assistance –TAA program — which is supposed to be quote-unquote to help American workers displaced by trade agreements, but it’s really just a labor union payoff, and then with cuts in Medicare. Why don’t you describe the Byzantine combination of those three things, and how the good guys actually won one.

BUCK:  Sure. Well, I don’t know if the good guys actually won one, but what happened was, the — what they did – what they tried to [do was] give something to everybody to get the votes that they needed for this. So they had a vote on what appeared to be training for workers in America. And if you voted for that, you actually were voting for giving the President authority to engage in trade negotiations which he had already engaged in. And, um, several of us –.

BONNIWELL:  So, those both go to the left side. I’m not sure where you’re buying votes. I mean, giving Obama more power, okay. Giving labor unions more money, that doesn’t – where do the Republicans get their side in any of these wonderful –?  Or is the Republican side to increase the power Obama?

BUCK:  Well, the — some Republicans believe that we needed more trade deals. And I happen to agree with President Trump, that many of the trade deals have been bad trade deals. And so, — but the Republicans, some Republicans in the conference wanted to increase the trade deals, and the Democrats wanted the training program for labor unions.

BONNIWELL: But they were also happy to give power to Trump – oh, [not] Trump – Obama, because Obama was going to the one negotiating agreements and giving you a up and down, yes or no vote. And how did Medicare manage to fit in to all that?

BUCK: So, let me just back up. They were not happy with trade. The labor unions see trade as undermining American workers.

BONNIWELL:  It does!

BUCK:  And so labor unions were against that.  And the Democrats would not have voted for a straight-up trade bill. Um, and –.

HAYDEN:  Let me –.

BUCK: Go ahead. I’m sorry!

HAYDEN:  Well, no. Go ahead, because I had a question, but a little bit broader topic. But go ahead, and you can –.

BONNIWELL:  Well, how did Medicare fit in there?

BUCK:  The Medicare is just another issue and potential funding screen for the training programs and it was again, a rather confusing road because I tried to give something to everybody in — and in the process, really, I think everybody was mad about one piece or another of that vote.

BONNIWELL:  I love that part where [reading from Buck’s book] Boehner himself comes “strutting down the center aisle towards me, grimacing, clearly unhappy with how the vote was going. ‘Buck! Put your card in, and vote ‘yes’!’ ‘Sorry, sir! I’m going to vote against this one.’ ‘What?!?!’”

HAYDEN:  [laughter]

BONNIWELL:  “’I’m going to vote against this one,’ I repeated. And he went off in a huff.”  But those people who voted against it got reprisals, didn’t they?

BUCK:  That’s absolutely right. Yeah. They – because of that vote, they went after me for the Freshman Class President position.

BONNIWELL:  The all-important President [position]!

HAYDEN:  And when you say “they”, this is not the Democratic Congressional Committee going after you. You’re talking about fellow Republicans, right?


BUCK:  That’s right. Republican leadership did that and they kicked a number of people off the whip team. They took away Mark Meadows’ subcommittee chairmanship on Oversight and Government Reform. So, they targeted a number of people and tried to get their revenge for a vote, which is which is really pretty amazing. It’s it’s a — you know, the constituents elect us to go there and vote. And somehow, leadership thinks that they own that voting card.

BONNIWELL:  Well, let me ask you one thing. There is one critique of your book, that Boehner was adamantly for this – giving Obama the authority, adamantly for giving this TAA approval. And you sit there and kind of go, “Why?” And it takes about ninety seconds to check on “US Chamber of Commerce and Boehner vote.” the US Chamber of Commerce is the biggest of all of the swamp creatures on the Republican side, and probably maybe the most baneful. But I checked the index, and there’s nothing – nothing in Drain the Swamp — about the US Chamber and their baneful effect. They pour millions of dollars – tens of millions of dollars –. And in fact, [they] contributed to you in 2010, when you were running for Senate. What about the US Chamber of Commerce, which is really who John Boehner wanted to please?

BUCK:  Well I think John Boehner was trying to please a lot of different groups, but the Chamber was certainly one of them. And, you know, there are a lot of stories to tell about the swamp, and if I didn’t mention the Chamber, they certainly deserve to be mentioned, because they are one of the big problems in Washington DC.  They affirmatively go after conservatives. Tim Huelskamp lost his seat in the western district of Kansas because of the U.S. Chamber targeting Tim as a conservative and defeating him. And so, they play, and they play very hard. We have some groups on the right, like Club for Growth, that also target folks. But, yeah, the Chamber is a corporate cronyist organization that promotes corporate interests at the expense of conservative values.

HAYDEN:  Well, Ken, what do we – how do we deal about that? There has been a lot of talk, um, and we had Cheryl Atkinson in, and –was it Issue One? – or somebody else, also talking about the influence that the big-money plays. And I mean, I was – I thought I understood a little bit about things, and I was surprised. From somebody who is there, how do you fight back? How do we stop that, and allow people like you to go there and actually vote the way that the people want you to vote?

BUCK:  So at the end of the book, I talk about a number of solutions that I think we need to implement, and one of them we mentioned earlier – the paying for committee positions, chairmanships, and ‘A’ committee slots — and I think what you have to do is you have to make that unethical. You have to make it a violation of the House rules and not allow that.


BUCK:  And there are other things. But ultimately, we have this bipartisan bankruptcy going on. The Democrats and Republicans agree that, “We’ll fund your program, you fund our programs, and we’ll just leave the bill to our grandchildren.” And so, I feel really strongly that we need a balanced budget amendment in order to make sure that we don’t allow the overspending to continue. We have $600 billion of debt accumulated just last fiscal year. That is without a major war, without a major recession, and it is just absolutely unacceptable.

BONNIWELL:  Well, one of the questions I have, and I’m kind of hesitant in asking – you’re one of my heroes up there, in fact the only person in the congressional delegation from Colorado that I respect. I’ve respected you since you ran for Governor and ran a good race – not Governor, Senate – and lost in a very close one. But it is beyond me — it is beyond me that you’ve decided – and you have an A+ rating from Numbers USA, which is an immigration restriction [organization] – you got together with Ron Johnson who has an F- — and if they could give an F triple-minus on that one — for the quote-unquote Federalist approach to immigration reform, which is giving massive visas uses out through states. Everybody I know, who loves you, respects you, [is] abhorred – abhorred – by this bill.

BUCK:  So, have you read the bill yet?

BONNIWELL:  I can’t read the whole bill! I’ve certainly seen what it says. I certainly [inaudible], you know, I –.

HAYDEN:  Well, just go ahead and –.

BUCK:  My point is, my point is I haven’t introduced the bill. I – it’s just so funny!

BONNIWELL:  Well, I – okay, I am reading from the Washington Post.

HAYDEN:  Well, what is it going to say? Maybe that’s – yeah!

BONNIWELL:  Well, okay. Let me finish what I’ve got. I’ve got the Washington Post, the [article] “Federalists Push Immigration Reform”. I’ve got Ron Johnson talking about the one, how you give visas to every state. The states would all decide it. The federal government would purportedly oversee it. It would be massive diminution of jobs for Americans. And it is maybe the worst bill. And I guess I’ll read the final one — and if you’ll ever come back after I’ve criticized it [chuckle] — but it just seems to be, uh – it was supposed to be comprehensive immigration reform on a different level by giving it to all the states. And we know New York and California will be very judicious about the visas they hand out.

BUCK:  So, I haven’t dropped the bill yet. The concept I think is a good concept, and that is to give 2500 on the existing visas now that are being given out to each state to have those dates create an infrastructure where they track the individuals if they can’t I guarantee that they have tracked 97% of the individuals within the state to get no visas. The next year, so there is an incentive that it gives the states. The ability to say what we want to bring some of these foreign manufacturing jobs back, and we need some high tech visas for that purpose. So the state can actually create the different kind of visas that they want so they will get you know, make it 500 high tech visas in Wyoming may get 100 high tech visas and that they will go for different purposes, but it gives the states the ability to sort craft what type of visas and immigrants come into their state in addition to the state going to go.

You can travel anywhere you want to this world and this won’t be tied to specific jobs anymore, which may or may not be any good so they can go anywhere in the said quoting for the Washington Post, there would be an additional 250,000 visas, which states could draw okay based on the states population’s percentage of US total population. Wyoming won’t be getting very many of those California certainly will.

BUCK:  And that’s Ron Johnson’s bill that’s not the bill that that I am constructing right now. Okay what I’m saying to you is the person who applies for and get that visa has to be in that job in Colorado for that one year time. Or Colorado doesn’t get in Colorado has to track that person afterwards also involves my deal involves making sure that we have biometric measures, that we have mandatory E-Verify, that we have other procedures in place so that this is in the process, or someone comes in the country and we never know where they are two weeks later. So that is the process we have now with the federal when the issue visas and I think it’s a huge part of the immigration problem that we have.

HAYDEN:  Just one checking why go there at all?

BUCK:   because we have a broken immigration system. We have a president the first time and in decades is willing to create a border security that we will have confidence in, and we still need workers and in various areas in this country to grow our economy with the debt trends. I know that I would love to look little jobs over the world apply for law school just help if you right now.

BONNIWELL:  I know I know people or seven years old and learning cybersecurity jobs out there for 60,000 H you pay people good wages they Americans will do anything for those jobs – Anything, because they want to support their families and stuff to make a living out there.

BUCK:  there is a large portion of American workers who would welcome retraining welcome, increasing their family income and would work very hard to accomplish that. There also many, many American workers who have taken the incentives of the government programs and are not of the workforce, so it got a decrease the incentives that we have a good food stamps of the housing and and transportation. Other things I forgot to get those workers in the workforce

BONNIWELL:  when thanking to the question was hard for me to ask your question but to get a very intelligent, following the shooting in Alexandria now this thing people time and work better together. We have got to stop all of the horrible rhetoric. that he makes sign on the past week.

BUCK:  My thought is that we have in this country very well. While news programs that are fighting people’s emotions. We have 99.999% of our population that can handle back can process the information they’re getting, and we have a few unstable people who are dangerous and those you got it, was involved in the shooting last week appears to be one of those unstable people in and that’s very unfortunate but I don’t think we should try to limit the First Amendment rights of individuals. I think that politicians have to be more responsible and how they talk about issues, but I think this guy was a nut job and and unfortunately had access to guns and found a place where Republicans were practicing in checks to get those guns would you think that Mark says his remarks on morning Joe where he basically said that is not all tonsils are basically just felt I just got ago you know bipartisanship is somebody in the Federalist that is is Republicans criticizing Republicans for someone shooting Republicans. Yeah, I don’t agree with how tall are you getting politicians for the guy who’s at fault as the shooter was that I like getting back to you, but I recommend it to anyone. Thank you. We can take your child to clear. Bill Cosby because we come back and we can make the check usually last another week