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John Delaney’s Interview With CNBC [Full Transcript]

John Delaney

CNBC Digital Video: Consultant John Delaney Sits Down With CNBC Editor At Giant John Harwood

WHEN: Thursday, December 27th

WHERE: CNBC.com’s Speakeasy with John Harwood

John DelaneyPicture supply: CNBC Video Screenshot

John Delaney leaves Congress in a couple of days, however not in defeat like so lots of his colleagues. The rich former monetary government is leaving to ramp up his marketing campaign for president. Sure, you learn that appropriately. The outgoing consultant from Maryland’s sixth Home District seeks the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. Certainly, Delaney has been the one and solely declared Democratic candidate for the final 17 months. After simply 4 years on Capitol Hill, Delaney launched his bid in July 2017 in hopes of overcoming his absence of any nationwide base or profile in any respect. It hasn’t labored but; regardless of frequent visits, Delaney acquired his 1 % help amongst Iowa Democrats in a current Des Moines Register ballot. But Delaney presents the brains and savvy that took him from a blue-collar upbringing to turning into the youngest CEO on the New York Inventory Trade in 1995. Now 55, he additionally brings a checkbook that allows him to finance his marketing campaign a minimum of by means of the earliest 2020 contests. He manufacturers himself a sensible problem-solver, able to bringing each events collectively to ship on progressive objectives reminiscent of common well being care and reductions within the carbon emissions that trigger local weather change. Delaney sat down with CNBC Editor-at-Giant John Harwood in Chevy Chase, Maryland, at Mei-Wah, an Asian restaurant close to the workplaces of the finance agency for midsize companies he ran earlier than first operating for Congress in 2012. A partial transcript from Speakeasy with John Harwood that includes Rep. John Delaney follows.

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John Harwood: What’s that makes you a Democrat?

John Delaney: I’ve an actual social justice orientation. It in all probability comes from my roots and my religion. My spouse and I are lively Catholics. We determine very a lot with the social justice mission of the church and I feel that has made me far more oriented to the Democratic Celebration. I additionally am considerably, regardless that I’m a capitalist and I’ve spent most of my profession within the personal sector as an entrepreneur beginning companies, I consider strongly that there’s a task for presidency to organize our residents for the world and to create a security internet for these which are inevitably left behind.

Harwood: Now, if you say you’re a capitalist, do you get the sensation that the drift of your celebration is in a unique path, or not?

Delaney: Properly, no. Not essentially. I truly assume the Democratic Social gathering is fairly aligned on most issues. Identical to any political get together although, it’s huge and there are individuals who align extra with the democratic socialist a part of our get together and whereas I share a few of the objectives that they’re making an attempt to realize like common well being care and ensuring school is reasonably priced and issues like that, I occur to consider that non-public financial system is a tremendous innovation machine. And has actually been one of many issues which have completely distinguished our nation from different nations all over the world. I feel it’s considerably of a false option to have to decide on between capitalism and supporting the personal financial system, but in addition having authorities have a task in serving to individuals’s lives.

Harwood: There’s an entire bunch of individuals serious about operating for President in your aspect, however you’re the one one who’s truly declared and carried out it. Why?

Delaney: Sure. Properly, I feel I’m the fitting individual for the job and have the correct imaginative and prescient for the nation, however not sufficient individuals know who I’m. That’s why I needed to declare early. To ensure I might get on the market and introduce myself to the important thing voters in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Harwood: How would you describe the form of the sector and your home in it?

Delaney: I don’t know. I don’t actually give it some thought in these phrases, partially as a result of I’m a unique type of Democrat. In the event you take a look at the issues I’ve labored on within the Congress, they’ve been progressive, they’ve been massive concepts that type of I feel will actually change this nation and make the longer term higher, however I’ve persistently labored on discovering widespread floor to get them achieved.

Harwood: Was that a deliberate evocation of Invoice Clinton once you stated a “different kind of Democrat”? That’s the phrase he utilized in 1991 when he was making an attempt to redefine the Democrat get together as considerably extra average. Is that purposeful?

Delaney: No, it’s not purposeful. I didn’t truly understand he had stated that. Individuals attempt to typically label me and since I labored with the opposite aspect I used to be ranked the third most bipartisan member of Congress and due to my enterprise background they assume I’m a average and centrist. I’m, to some extent, as a result of I feel the facility on this nation is absolutely within the middle.

Harwood: Do you need to be referred to as a pro-business Democrat?

Delaney: Pay attention, I’m a pro-jobs Democrat and if you wish to be pro-jobs, you, to some extent, should be pro-business. As a result of enterprise creates all the roles on this nation. I take into consideration type of this notion of capitalism and making an attempt to make it extra simply and inclusive over time.

Harwood: Do you assume the present degree of regulation of Wall Road and American enterprise is sufficient?

Delaney: I feel in some methods it’s and in some methods it isn’t. You already know, it’s arduous. Look, I don’t assume we’ve accomplished sufficient – we talked about local weather. I feel our efforts to place protections on our pure world in a basic sense, have been good and applicable. However have we executed sufficient to cope with what’s occurring with carbon and what that’s going to result in with local weather change? Completely not. Do I feel we’ve completed issues to strengthen the monetary system and make it in order that we will stand up to one other vital downturn within the financial system? Completely, the banks are a lot stronger than they have been.

Harwood: What do you make of the large gyrations we’ve seen in monetary markets during the last a number of weeks? Couple months truly.

Delaney: I don’t learn an excessive amount of into it. Markets go up and down due to how individuals take into consideration the longer term, but in addition how they consider how issues are priced. So I look extra at what’s occurring to individuals. What’s occurring to our residents. I imply final yr the Federal Reserve stated that half of our nation, if introduced with a $500 shock expense – which means they get up, one thing occurs to their automotive, their home, or their well being, their well being care, they usually want $500 – they don’t have the financial savings or they don’t have the capability on their bank card. That’s half the nation. That, to me, is a way more worrisome statistic than what’s occurred with the inventory market.

Harwood: And after 2020 if you hope to be President, what are the 2 or three most pressing issues for Democrats to do?

Delaney: I feel we should always construct infrastructure. I feel we should always increase the earned revenue tax credit score to place extra money in individuals’s pockets. I feel we should always repair our damaged immigration and felony justice reform techniques.

Harwood: Now how can we pay for the primary two issues that you simply simply talked about?

Delaney: I had a proposal to construct $1 trillion of infrastructure, absolutely paid for. 40 Democrats, 40 Republicans, Head of Freedom Caucus, Head of Progressive Caucus. And I paid it for it by tying it to worldwide tax reform, which they did within the final tax invoice, however they didn’t pair it to infrastructure. How a lot better would that tax reform, if inside it –

Harwood: Okay. That’s water underneath the bridge.

Delaney: However you’ll be able to re-reform it, and pay for infrastructure. So as an alternative of chopping company tax charges from 35 % to 21, in case you have been to chop it from 35 % to 25, which is what the enterprise group requested for, you might’ve had a $1 trillion infrastructure plan.

Harwood: So that you’d wish to take that company tax price up a couple of factors.

Delaney: As a part of launching a trillion greenback infrastructure program? Completely. I’d like extra earned revenue tax credit score. And I might in all probability pay for that – what I’d love to do is reform the capital achieve system. I feel capital positive aspects charges and atypical revenue charges ought to be the identical until you personal the asset for a really very long time. So I’d wish to create incentives for individuals to personal belongings for seven or 10 years, as a result of meaning they’ll spend money on start-ups, they’ll spend money on infrastructure, the sort of stuff we’d like that has a for much longer payback.

Harwood: What ought to the highest private price be?

Delaney: I feel the highest private price the place it was earlier than this final tax invoice was positive.

Harwood: 39.6 %.

Delaney: Yeah, that was high-quality.

Harwood: The place does strengthening the power of staff to arrange, and what staff can do as soon as they’re organized, the place does that match into your agenda?

Delaney: I’m pro-union. I feel unions are the one individuals who get up day by day and truly struggle for staff. They only don’t battle for the employees within the unions, they struggle for all staff. So I need to create a dynamic the place it’s a degree enjoying subject and unions have the best to arrange. However I additionally understand a variety of the financial system isn’t unionized proper now and that’s positive. Neither of my corporations –

Harwood: Ought to it’s?

Delaney: No, I don’t assume issues ought to or shouldn’t be. I feel individuals ought to have the appropriate to arrange, and if it make sense for them and the corporate, they need to do it. However neither of my companies have been unionized.

Harwood: You’ve been at this a yr and a half. You bought a really good column from George Will about your candidacy, however you’re at 1 %. What conclusions do you draw proper now concerning the viability of this enterprise since you realize that individuals are going to observe this and say, ‘Come on, he doesn’t have an opportunity.’

Delaney: We expect we have now a terrific probability. I’ve been to all 99 counties. We’ve received 25 individuals on the bottom in Iowa. I’ve acquired six workplaces open. I’ve acquired about 40 individuals on the workforce. We’re going to run a serious marketing campaign in 2019. I’m going to be throughout Iowa and New Hampshire.

Harwood: You’re self-financing it, sure?

Delaney: I’ve the power to finance my marketing campaign by way of Iowa and New Hampshire.

Harwood: Is the one measure out of your standpoint of the success of what you’re doing now’s for those who turn out to be President?

Delaney: So when my spouse and I made a decision to do that, which is a leap of religion by definition, proper?

Harwood: Completely.

John Delaney: The place you need to say, are we doing it for the proper purpose? Proper? That’s the first query we’ve to ask ourselves. And we answered that, sure. Do we expect we have now one thing to say? Can we see a path to viability? And the solutions to all of these questions have been sure. And so long as I keep true to what I consider, which is that this message of unity, widespread objective and truly wanting on the details, being trustworthy with the American individuals about our issues, being trustworthy concerning the options and bringing individuals collectively to get these issues executed – so long as I keep true to that, there’s no means this might be a nasty expertise.

DIGITAL EXTRAS:

Delaney On His Expertise Operating A Firm

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Harwood: So, this restaurant is the place the place you used to return once you ran your corporation throughout the road?

Delaney: Yep.

Harwood: Inform me about that enterprise.

Delaney: It was my second firm. It was an organization referred to as Capital Supply, which targeted on financing small and mid-size corporations everywhere in the nation. Our area of interest was corporations that have been rising too quick for his or her area people financial institution, however weren’t large enough to be served by the large banks. I constructed a enterprise to focus on simply that a part of the market. It turned a very good sized firm. We ended up financing 5 thousand corporations. I took it public. I ran it till I made a decision to run for Congress. I spent most of my profession serving to small companies get the capital they should develop.

Harwood: So, why politics?

Delaney: Nicely, I do know this will sound slightly corny, however my spouse and I all the time considered our life as sort of a 3rd studying, a 3rd incomes, and a 3rd serving. I all the time needed to dedicate a significant quantity of my time to public service. It in all probability grew out of a few of the philanthropic stuff we have been doing. I simply felt prefer it was the best way for me to take advantage of transformative distinction was to take a few of the core beliefs I had plus my expertise within the personal sector as an entrepreneur, beginning companies, and actually deliver that to public service and never solely do issues to enhance our financial system, however to only assist as many individuals as I might.

Delaney On President Trump’s Enterprise Expertise

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Harwood: What have you ever discovered within the six years that you simply’ve been within the Congress that makes you assume that, individually, as an individual you’re able to be President, and professionally have the capability to impress the type of help that you must develop into President?

Delaney: I feel I’ve the right background to have the privilege to be the President of the USA. Rising up in a blue collar household, I’ve lived the American Dream, which is so central to who we’re as a nation and is what I feel most mother and father need for his or her youngsters. I used to be an entrepreneur, began these companies from scratch. My dad didn’t give me any cash to start out them. They didn’t have any. I feel it’s extremely necessary that we’ve a President who understands how the personal financial system actually works and is aware of how one can place the nation to achieve success. However I’ve additionally now –

Harwood: Do you assume we now have a President now who understands how the personal financial system works?

Delaney: No, I don’t. Pay attention, I don’t assume President Trump is a enterprise chief. I feel he was a enterprise promoter. I do know what I did as a enterprise chief. I created jobs, I paid all my payments, I innovated, I employed one of the best and the brightest. I made positive that each relationship I had was nearly as good as potential and that folks needed to do enterprise with me once more. And I don’t assume he did any of these issues, proper? However I do assume we’d like a President who understands the financial system, however I additionally rolled up my sleeves and went to the Congress. I’ve served six years within the Home of Representatives, so I understand how the federal government works. We shouldn’t be electing individuals to steer our nation who’ve by no means completed public service. And I feel, once more, that’s a problem with this President. I don’t assume he had any concept what he was stepping into.

Harwood: Let me return to Trump for one second. Do you assume that, as a model matter, Trump’s presidency definitely amongst Democrats has discredited the thought of a enterprise man turning into President?

Delaney: No, as a result of I feel the issues that he has achieved that has so offended Democrats don’t have anything to do with the truth that he was in enterprise. As a result of once more, I don’t assume he’s actually bringing a enterprise individual’s headset to the job. What enterprise individuals do is –

Harwood: You assume, simply to state it extra bluntly, you assume the entire concept that he was a profitable enterprise government is baloney?

Delaney: I feel he was a really profitable enterprise promoter, and he was excellent at licensing his identify. Proper? That was his talent in enterprise –

Harwood: And that may be a sort of enterprise talent.

Delaney: And I give him credit score for that. And he was profitable in that. I don’t assume that’s a set of enterprise expertise that’s actually wanted to be the Chief Government of the nation. The type of enterprise expertise which are wanted to be the Chief Government of the nation is to have some imaginative and prescient about the place issues are going and to place our nation to be as aggressive and profitable in that future as attainable. And that may be a totally different set of enterprise expertise. The opposite factor he doesn’t do is he doesn’t construct coalitions of help. One of many issues I all the time needed to do as a enterprise chief is get my workforce members and my shoppers and other people’s help – you understand, I ran two public corporations – buyers. I needed to get broad purchase in as to what we have been doing and that is among the issues that I feel is lacking on this nation.

Delaney On Well being Care

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Harwood: Medicare-for-all – the place are you on that challenge?

Delaney: I feel we should always have common well being care. Completely. Each American ought to have healthcare without any consideration, I feel it’s a human proper. I additionally assume it’s sensible economics. I imply my dad, a union electrician, had one job for 60 years. So it made complete sense –

Harwood: So, is that common Medicare?

Delaney: No, I might do one thing totally different. What I might do is take – principally create a brand new system for everybody from once they’re born to once they’re 65. And I’d roll Medicaid into that. After which after 65, they’d go to Medicare. Perhaps over time these issues might merge collectively, however proper now I feel you allow Medicare alone. It really works, individuals are proud of it. I don’t assume our seniors need us to take their Medicare –

Harwood: Would you part out employer-provided well being care?

Delaney: Sure. That’s how I’d pay for it. So principally, new system, everybody will get well being care from once they’re born to they die. This new program from delivery to 65, and Medicare above that.

Harwood: So principally one authorities program for well being care pre-retirement, after which Medicare.

Delaney: Sure, however a key distinction. You understand how Medicare has supplementals? You’d have the identical factor for the opposite program. So that you principally get a spine system that everybody will get, after which they will purchase supplementals or they will opt-out in the event that they need to get a small tax credit score and purchase personal insurance coverage. You pay for that entire system by eliminating the company deductibility of well being care, which is a horrible system. Proper? There’s no – it doesn’t make any financial sense to tie –

Harwood: So you’d eliminate the deduction?

Delaney: Eliminate the deduction, proper. I’m a type of individuals who thinks it is best to say how you will pay for issues. So my system, which I consider I might pay for with that and some different issues, provides everybody well being care without any consideration, however permits them additionally to have a lot of decisions. And there’d be a personal market that floats above the federal government market. In the event you change jobs, you will have well being care, proper? If you wish to go begin a enterprise, you’ve gotten well being care. In the event you’re a toddler and also you age off your mother and father’ medical insurance – you and I do know what that is all about – there’s well being care there for you. Should you’re low revenue, there’s well being care. However, in the event you additionally need decisions, and you’re able the place you can also make these decisions, you will get supplementals, perhaps you possibly can opt-out, and so on. That’s the type of well being care we should always have on this nation.

Delaney On Gerrymandering

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Harwood: The beginning of your political profession, you bought launched by gerrymandering.

Delaney: Yeah.

Harwood: How do you are feeling about that, given the truth that gerrymandering has turn into a unclean phrase in our politics?

Delaney: Nicely, it ought to be a unclean phrase. I had by no means targeted on it that a lot. There’s no query that my district, which was created after the final redistricting that was achieved within the state, was gerrymandered to make it a extra aggressive district as a result of it had been held by a Republican. I actually turned very delicate to this once I ran for workplace the primary time as a result of each Democrats and Republicans have been upset about it. As a result of the Democrats favored the Consultant that they had had and the Republicans felt just like the Democrats sort of engineered this district away from them. It actually struck me how the response to this, on a bipartisan foundation, was destructive. One of many issues I stated to my future constituents once I was operating I stated, ‘Listen, you’re proper about this. We shouldn’t do that. Proper? You need to decide your reps, the reps shouldn’t decide you.’ I made a dedication to them that this is able to be one of many points I tackle. I’ve actually taken it on. I’ve had laws to finish it nationally. It’s an enormous drawback. It’s actually one of many issues that has damaged our democracy, for my part.