Vice President of the United States Mike Pence spoke with Brian Kilmeade about the latest on the New York City terrorist attack and why the Trump administration has not labeled terrorist Sayfullo Saipov an enemy combatant. Plus, VP Pence explained how the tax reform plan being unveiled today will reduce taxes for all Americans and stated President Trump has been clear about his red line on the corporate tax rate being lowered to 20%.
Listen here for the full interview:
BRIAN KILMEADE, FOX NEWS RADIO HOST: And, joining us right now it's our privilege to bring the vice president of the United States. If there's somebody more respect on our Capital Hill or by the president I don't know who it is. Mr. Vice President, welcome back.
MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Brian, it's great to be on the program and congratulations on your book. I can't wait to get through it.
KILMEADE: Thank you very much and I'll definitely get it to you if you're allowed - I can never know what the rules are with politicians. If I can actually send it to you or not. I don't want to get you in trouble.
PENCE: Don't worry, I'll get one on my own. I've read a biography in the past of Andrew Jackson but I'm really looking forward to reading yours.
KILMEADE: Thanks so much. Mr. Vice President, I tell you I know you're as strong on terror as anyone when you were in Congress let alone now. Have we - have your policy now mirroring President Obama's policy of going through the legal system instead of putting him through the military system?
PENCE: Look, well first off let me - let me say as the president has said that our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of Tuesday's terrorist attack in New York City. We are bringing the full resources of the federal government to bear to support the efforts of the New York City Police Department to follow through on the investigation.
And, we're going to hold this assailant responsible and if there are any more involved we're going to hold them to the very strictest account. This was a barbaric act of terrorism and it will not stand. And, it is in a very real sense, Brian, we believe, of indication of aggressive posture President Trump has taken in taking the fight to ISIS on their soil on our terms.
As you reported very well on this radio program and on the airwaves of Fox and Friends as we speak thanks to U.S. Armed Forces and our allies ISIS is on the run. We have overtaken the so-called capital of their caliphate Raqqa. There's more fighting to be done but Tuesday was a grim reminder --
PENCE: ... that our enemies are still - are still afoot. They're still inspiring violence that threatens our people and I can assure you President Trump and our entire administration, our Armed Forces will not rest, we will not relent until we destroy ISIS at its sore so it can no longer inspire or make possible these kinds of acts of violence.
KILMEADE: But, Mr. Vice President, he said -
PENCE: I would say that very clearly. But so there's nothing - I got to tell you there's nothing about President Trump's policies that mirror the last administration. I mean, ISIS came to life, was literally conjured out of the - out of the desert policies of the last administration -
KILMEADE: But they brought the battle here, Mr. Vice President and we're not treated like that.
PENCE: Well, they did.
KILMEADE: He's a - he say's he's a soldier of the caliphate. As Senator Lindsey Graham said, "Why are we treating him like a criminal?" Here is Ed Davis. He said the way the Boston bombers were treated he said this is the call he got after they got the Zarnia brother. The other one was dead. Cut 24.
ED DAVIS: There's a clause in the Patriot Act that takes the process out of the civilian courts into a military style process. So, in the case of (inaudible) I got a call from the United States Attorney who ordered me to give orders to my officers not to read the suspect their rights.
And, they brought a special team in of intelligence and military personnel because they thought that this may be an ongoing plot. So, there is - there is a possibility of doing that in the law.
KILMEADE: Why didn't we do that? This guy - yes go ahead.
PENCE: Well, Brian, the president made it clear that he was open to sending this assailant, this terrorist to Guantanamo. In fact I think he - the president tweeted this morning that he would have loved to send the New York terrorist to Guantanamo but the process takes longer and justice delayed is justice denied.
KILMEADE: But we Mirandize him. He's got a lawyer. Why did we -
PENCE: We want to see - we want to see - and the president has made it clear he believe this is a case where death penalty is warranted, I agree with that in the strongest possible terms. I mean running down innocent civilians, killing eight, injuring more than 11. This was a barbaric terrorist attack and we want to bring this person - we want to bring this person to justice as swiftly as possible. And, that's what informed the president's decision.
KILMEADE: Right. It's just that I want to question more (ph).
PENCE: I really want to take issue, Brian. I mean the truth is as I began to say moments ago, literally the precipitous withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq created the vacuum in which ISIS was created -
KILMEADE: Oh, I hear you.
PENCE: Literally overran more than half of Iraq. President Trump came into office and he said we are going to destroy ISIS, we're going to - we're going to allow our military to take the action there, take the fight to terrorists and if anything this vicious terrorist attack in New York is simply a confirmation that in President Trump we have the right leadership.
PENCE: We have the right commander-in-chief who's taking the fight to the enemy.
KILMEADE: I just hope - I hope next time we get them, we don't Mirandized him. We hold onto him until our interrogators are - feel as though they understand what - who he's talked to and what he's capable of. I don't think, as much as I respect New York, I don't think they know everything he knows.
And, they - now has a lawyer and he's smiling with an ISIS flag and he's going to start using our legal system. Even though I know he's going to get convicted and maybe killed, I want to know what he knows and I'm not convinced we can do that now. Are you?
PENCE: Well, let me be - let me be - let me be very clear with all of your millions of listeners around the country, we are going to get to the bottom of this terrorist action, who inspired him, who worked with him. There are - there is an aggressive investigation underway. I was briefed again on it this morning.
I was at the CIA yesterday. As I said, your listeners should be confident. We are bringing the full resources of the federal government to bear in support of New York law enforcement. We're going to get to the bottom of this. We're going to hold him to the strictest and swiftest account and justice.
And, we're going to find if there were any others involved and I can't really speak at this moment about that, if there were any other involved, we will hold them to the strictest account. We're going to bring justice to these people. That's how we protect the American people.
KILMEADE: I want to talk about tax reform, I know you do, too. You're going to - later on you're going to be with Governor Scott in Florida but I also know that you have a - the House is finally ready to unveil tax reform. Can you let our listeners know what we - the takeaways?
PENCE: Well, it's been more than a generation since we've - we've passed the kind of tax cuts and tax reform to really liven the American economy. I mean, john F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan did it, and what really begins today in the House of Representatives, and we believe will - will be completed before the end of this year is going to be a historic tax cut that's going to building on the momentum that we already see in this economy, Brian, it really is remarkable. After eight years, of less than 2 percent economic growth, we just posted the second quarter in a row of over 3 percent growth because of the policies President Trump's been advancing in terms of rolling back red tape, unleashing American energy.
But this tax cut plan, will reduce taxes on individuals, it'll simplify the tax code and it'll lower business taxes in America like the business I'm visiting in Florida, to make it possible for American companies to compete with companies around the world. It is - it is remarkable to think that in the most powerful economy on earth, we have one of the highest business tax rates on the planet.
President Trump is committed to change that, bringing middle class tax relief to working families to simplify the tax code, and the great news for the America people is that all starts today with the introduction of the House tax cut bill.
KILMEADE: Some specifics, if I can. The 20 percent the president spoke about, is that a red line, and is it true that you're considering a phase in of it, a gradual decrease?
PENCE: Well, I think the president - I think the president's made it very clear to members of Congress that lowering the corporate tax rate from 35 to 20 percent is absolutely imperative. That puts us in a competitive position, the president - we were talking about going to 15 percent early on, the president made it clear we'll do 20, that's it.
So, people - people, I think, understand hoe firmly the president is committed to that. But the other part of this, don't forget, I grew up in a small business family. My family was in the gas station business, Brian, and - and my family, like - like literally millions of business around the country - my - my folks filed their taxes as individuals, that was business income. And we're going to make sure that we also lower the taxes on people that are reporting large incomes that are business income, we're going to lower that to 25 percent.
I mean, if you look back at 1980's, the majority of jobs that were created, the last time we - we passed historic tax relief, were created in small business America. I'm just saying (ph), 20 percent on big corporations, so called, C-corporations, but we're going to go to 25 percent on - on so called past through small businesses. And - and the combination of this, we - we think - we think the combination of this, it's going to be hard to calculate how - how much the American economy is - is - is going to rally around the tax cuts that we're going to fight to get on the president's desk before Christmas.
KILMEADE: Right, and I know you've got to run, you've got to do another interview, but I understand, Steve Scalise told us today, that it's going - the top bracket is going to stay at 39.5 percent. Would you actually say that too?
PENCE: Well, we'll - I know the House of representatives is going to be unveiling heir plan today, President Trump has made it clear that he wants to focus this tax relief on middle class Americans and on job creators and businesses across this country. And we think that what House Republicans unveil today is a great start in that direction, we're grateful for the leadership of Speaker Ryan, of Chairman Kevin Brady and all those that have been working tirelessly with the administration. The Senate will be moving very quickly on their version of the bill and in the weeks ahead, we're literally going to fight everyday to give the American people the kind of tax cuts and tax reform that will make the American economy great again.
KILMEADE: Mr. Vice President, thanks so much for putting us on your schedule, always appreciate it and you say they're going to get it done before the year's end, that will make a lot of people happy. Thanks so much.
PENCE: Thank you, Brian.