Transcript for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Democrat's focus and Matthew Whitaker's appointment
So New York senator Kirsten Gillibrand won a landslide victory last week in a midterm election where women ruled, and she joins us now to talk about where America can go from here. Please welcome senator Kristen Gillibrand. Thank you. Thank you all. So congratulations on your re-election. Thank you. Democrats have a little power now in the house, so where do we go now? We don't want to do what has been done. How -- if you were in charge, what would your priorities be? I think this election is an opportunity to actually meet people's needs and to help people. When I traveled across New York this last year, the number one issue was people are worried about health care, affording medicines, affording health care, so making sure it's a right and not a privilege. That means taking on the drug companies, it means taking on the insurance companies, making sure pre-existing conditions are protected. We also need to make sure that people can get fair wages for their jobs, making sure we strengthen unions, strengthen workers' rights, make sure that we reward work like having a national pay leave plan, having better pay, equal pay for equal work, having better benefits and better job training. And last but definitely not least, we have to get the money out of politics because none of this is possible if you have the continued corruption of the political process with the nonstop money that's funneled into campaigns by special interests who write the bills in the dead of night. So we have to take on money in politics. Campaign finance reform? Yes, we need campaign finance reform, publicly funded elections. But changing who's in charge, you have to bring it back to the people. This democracy is based on we the people and what we need in our lives. Unfortunately because of the money in politics, the special interests and the powerful have such an outsized influence in outcomes, so we need to restore our democracy to our founding principles, that every vote counts, which is why we're having recounts around the country right now which is really important and the people should be in charge. It has to go back to the local level and that means getting the special interest money out and meeting the needs, helping people, caring about other people's kids as much as we care about our own kids. The supreme court has that citizens united thing. It's not going in that direction. It's going in the other direction, more money in politics. That's right. That's why you need to change the player's lists. We need to try to get money out of politics and restore what our fabric of democracy is about which is making sure everyone has the chance to live the American dream to work their hardest to earn their way into the middle class. That's what's not happening and that's what people voted for. They want change and they want to restore our democracy. There are a lot of Democrats that want president trump out of office. According to exit polls, 77% of Democrats want him impeached. There's talk about having more Democrats in power. How are you going to use that power? Is impeachment a bridge too far for those Democrats in power? We certainly need oversight and accountability. The Republican congress refused to hold president trump accountable on any of the issues that you mentioned, whether it's Russia's involvement in the election, whether it's self-dealing or lining the pockets of the cabinet members and of trump and his family. You've never seen, in my opinion, an administration that has nor corruption than this one, so they have to do their jobs. Is that a win for Democrats? It's not about winning or losing. It's about our democracy. It's about this country. Do you want to stand up to someone who's taking on the free press, someone who's undermining the rule of law, who's undermining the freedom of the judiciary. These are issues at our core, the balance of democracy, the balance of power. The president has been trying to undermine it every chance he gets. Plus, he's put so much hatred and division into this world, into this country, whether he's hating on transgender troops or DACA kids or -- Blaming firefighters for fires. Right. He's dividing the country on racial lines. Impeachment is not going to work though because you need two-thirds of the senate for that, right? We need oversight. How do you get the guy impeached? It's the duty of the house of representatives if the president is implicated in a crime. People are waiting for the Mueller investigation to be completed. We need that transparency by the Mueller investigation. What needs to happen the day we get back into congress which is tomorrow, we need to pass a law that protects that investigation because there's a bipartisan bill waiting to be voted on in the senate today that would make sure that that investigation is protected, that all the documents would be preserved. Mitch Mcconnell has already said, senator, that that plan, he will not allow to go forward. Hopefully the American people will continue to speak out about this because again, when you put in place someone who has attacked the Mueller investigation -- which by the way, Whitaker's appointment is illegal. It's unconstitutional. The fact that he's on the record calling the Mueller investigation a witch hunt and a sham shows that he's biased and should not have that role today. So you need to protect the Mueller investigation, make sure Mueller can't be fired without cause and protect the documents. More with senator Kirsten
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