U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) this morning joined Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday” to discuss a number of topics including President Biden’s infrastructure proposal and how the humanitarian crisis at the southern border was caused by Democrats’ immigration policies.
On Democrats’ loosely defined infrastructure bill:
“There are Republicans who are interested in an infrastructure plan. Infrastructure in the past has been bipartisan – when it’s confined to infrastructure. The plan that you heard Secretary Buttigieg talk about is a massive expansion of the government. Only about six percent of the president’s proposal actually goes to what everyday Americans would describe as infrastructure. If Democrats are interested in roads, bridges, highways, and perhaps broadband, there is a deal to be had there.
“The sort of big, bold, utopian, European-style socialism proposal that they’ve laid out there is something they can try and do another time, but if they’re sincere about doing something on infrastructure, I think there are Republicans who would vote for it.”
On Democrats’ proposed tax hikes:
“The tax increases that are included in here are something that would be very crushing to the economy. You’re talking about increasing the rate from 21 percent to 28 percent, or a 33 percent tax increase on businesses in this country who are looking to create jobs. It doesn’t make sense after we just reformed the tax code in 2017 and tried to make our tax code more competitive in the global marketplace, to then raise taxes and make the United States the highest taxed place to do business in the world. I don’t think that’s a good way to grow our economy. It’s not a good way to create jobs. And the Democrat idea always includes increasing taxes. There aren’t very many times in history where I think you look at the economy and say let’s raise taxes to create jobs. If we want to do that, we want to keep taxes low so that our businesses can compete globally. There’s certainly no need for a big fat tax increase on businesses.”
On the crisis at the southern border:
“There were policies in place under the previous administration, Trump policies, that were effective and that were working. This administration made a decision early on to do the opposite of what President Trump did. They were warned by the Border Patrol in advance: if you do these things, this is what’s going to happen. This is now what’s happened. We’ve got the highest number of people coming illegally across the border that we’ve seen in 15 years. So, they can fix this. They’ve got to fix it. And it’s going to take willingness on the part of the current administration probably to eat a little crow and say that all of these abrupt changes from existing policies were wrong. But we have a major crisis down there and it’s worsening by the day.”
On protecting the Second Amendment:
“The perception out here in South Dakota – and other places around the country where the Second Amendment is something that’s deeply cherished and valued—is that the government is coming after people’s firearms. I mean, that’s the reason you can’t find any ammo or any firearms in a lot of our sporting goods stores here in South Dakota.
“I don’t think Republicans are averse to doing smart things, reasonable things, if they are actually addressing the issue. What Republicans don’t want to do is adopt policies that have nothing to do with solving the problem, but put additional burdens on law-abiding citizens who are trying to exercise their Second Amendment rights. Frankly, to be fair and to be honest, people on the far-left have been very hostile to the Second Amendment – to people in this country who are gun owners – and have been looking for every opportunity to get their guns.”