Senator James Lankford (R-OK) spoke with Brian Kilmeade about President Trump making a deal with democrats, why he disagrees with President Trump that the republicans should completely end the filibuster in the senate and shoots down the rumor that there is GOP conspiracy to undue the 2016 presidential election.
Senator Lankford on President Trump's deal with democrats on the debt limit not being good for the republican agenda.
(Lankford) The issue that we really face is anytime you do debt limit it's a very basic principle the debt limit exists so that the nation has to stop and debate debt and try to figure it out. This was just a way to be able to advance the dead limit in to ignore the debt rather as actually try to resolve the debt and just be able to move it and we loaded even more into December so it's now debt limits its flood insurance, it's all of our appropriation bills. All those are loaded all into one a big package now in December and making a cliff even higher.
Senator Lankford on President Trump wanting the Senate to end the filibuster
(Lankford) I've actually been out there on this for two years. I laid out a proposal two years ago when we did not know who would run the senate so we're talking prior to the twenty sixteen elections at that point no one knew which direction of the Senate was going to go. I made a proposal to everybody and just said here's a simple way to do it lets fix the filibuster by doing this one thing . Most people don't know there's two filibusters for every bill one to get on the bill and another one to get off the bill. I think that's ridiculous you cannot even debate a bill and get on it without sixty votes so i have proposed getting rid of that first filibuster entirely and whoever is in the majority should be able to get on a bill and debate it and once you start debating it everyone gets their voice everyone gets to engage in it they work they actually get it passed. But to have a group that can step back and say no you can't even discuss this topic on the senate floor I think is absurd. so I'm actually a proponent to say there needs to be a moment everybody is made sure that they get heard that's with the filibuster is supposed to do but it's not working as its intended to get rid of the first one entirely let's get on debates actually move on these things.
(Kilmeade) have you told the President this?
(Lankford) I actually have. I sat down with the President about a month ago, we talked about the specific idea and he was very very favorable to that and very helpful.
Lankford on President Trump telling DACA recipients that the government is not coming after them and why DACA is just one part of immigration reform
(Kilmeade) How do you feel about that being an isolated offering without being tied to the wall or any type of comprehensive plan?
(Lankford) I don't think that's where the President is, to be an isolated offering that is not connected. The President and I have spoken about this I would say the conversation is not to do just individual take care of what's happening with DACA but we've got much larger immigration issues. if we just work on DACA legislatively that will be no different than what President Obama did when he did a DACA statement and then our borders were flooded with people trying to come across the border and to try to get in before " the gates closed." We need to deal with border security, we need to deal with internal security, we need to deal with the e-verify system. What Tom Cotton and David Perdue have put out there is a good proposal to be able to start talking about how do we handle a merit based immigration rather than the just family connected immigration. All these things need to be a part of the conversation. DACA is one section of a larger conversation about immigration and I think we should handle it that way. I've had several folks say we can solve this in a week and I've said no we're not going to solve this a week ,this will be months of debate because it should be about reforming the immigration and how we do it, not just dealing with DACA.
Lankford on Steve Bannon saying republicans do not want to implement President Trump's populist agenda
(Kilmeade) What are your thoughts on Bannon's theory?
(Lankford) Hmm. That's an interesting proposal the accountability side of it I would say republicans at this point often are saying hey we're on the same team we may disagree on 5 or 10% of the issues but we agree on 90-95% of the issues and many republicans feel like they are getting the heat from the white house and democrats who disagree with us 90% of the time are getting off scot free. So we are allies with the President on most of the policies but not all of us think alike on every issue, that's just the uniqueness. I represent Oklahoma , we as Oklahomans don't agree with every issue with every person in every other state is the reason we have a diverse perspective but let's try to find the ways to be able to work together, if we disagree, let's talk it out.
Senator Lankford on where're there is a GOP conspiracy to undo the 2016 election
(Kilmeade) So there is no GOP conspiracy to undo the 2016 election?
(Lankford) No, there's not a GOP conspiracy to undo it. Obviously Ben Sasse doesn't agree with the President on a lot of areas and such. There are going to be individuals that are in there but there's no grand conspiracy to undo the election, quite frankly the focus is we always are guaranteed only four years of the presidency so let's get as much done as we can and hope we have eight.