- The Washington Times
Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Sen. Joni Ernst said Tuesday she doesn’t have any issue with President Trump making deals with Democrats as long as Republicans direct the conversation.

“I don’t have anxiety over that. I think tax reform is a must do, and if we are in the chair, steering that conversation, I’m OK with that,” Ms. Ernst, Iowa Republican, said on Fox News.


Last week, Mr. Trump made a deal with Democratic leaders to pass relief funding for recovery efforts in Texas and Louisiana after Hurricane Harvey devastated the region. Mr. Trump agreed to a short-term extension of the debt ceiling in order to pass the funds quickly. Republicans had originally requested a longer extension of the debt ceiling so they could focus on tax reform, but they could not persuade the president.

“I am OK with that. Again, as long as we are steering that conversation, we need to see something done with tax reform. I don’t want to see another situation where we fail to get our policies across the finish line,” Ms. Ernst said.

She also announced that she is reintroducing legislation that would cap the amount of funding former president receive after leaving office.

“What we see now is a situation where our former presidents have book deals, they have speaking engagements, and they are paid quite liberally in those areas. The American taxpayer shouldn’t be subsidizing for these personal office spaces, and it’s time we do something about that,” she said.

The allowance program for former presidents was started after some struggled financially after their years in the White House. Her legislation would cap the amount at $200,000 per year to each president, but adds security expenses would not be part of this.


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