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Calvin Ward

Calvin Ward (D-AR) Press Office

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Calvin Ward

Good evening y’all. My name is Calvin Ward, I’m currently the Speaker of the House, but I’m also a representative for the people of Arkansas. You’ve come to Austin as free men and women, as hardworking farmers who fight nature itself to put food on not just your table, but the tables of millions of Americans. Family farms feed all of us. You didn’t come here asking for special treatment. You didn’t come to Austin because you’re entitled. You came to Austin because you’re angry, and dammit you have every right to be. 

You may come from a red state like Texas or Arkansas. You may have voted for the President last election. And I get it. I understand that decision; you voted for someone who you believed would support you, would stand up for you, would fight for the common man. Many of my constituents did the same thing, and it’s my job to listen to them. It’s my job to look them in the eyes and understand their plight. But ladies and gentleman, the President didn’t stand up for you. He didn’t just not improve you station, he worsened it. He brought us into a trade war that raised costs, hurt factories and workers alike. GM pulled up roots after losing a billion dollars to the tariffs. But it’s nothing compared to what you’re feeling. Twelve billion dollars from you and your fellow farmers is gone. They fought this trade war, but you and your families are the casualties. They fought this war and expect just a buyout will be ok.They wanted you to just take the buyout and as Mr. Grants said, grin and bear it. Just hang on. 

Well I say that’s not enough. They don’t plow the fields you do. They don’t sow the seeds, the don’t till the weeds. They take money from your kid’s schools because they failed you. Did the President relent? No. He didn’t. He didn’t represent you. And it’s to the point that even the Republican candidates have to abandon him. They can’t spin it, it’s a failure. So as Democrats, we wrote a bill to continue to support you, to continue to 

 


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Calvin Ward

Good morning everyone, my name is Calvin Ward. I’m currently Speaker of the House of Representatives, but I also represent the people of Arkansas, a state well known for its soy farms. You’ve come here this morning as free men and women, as hardworking farmers who fight nature itself to put food, not just in your tables, but the tables of millions of Americans. Family farms feed all of us. Y’all didn’t come here asking for special treatment; you’re not here because you’re entitled. You’re here today because you believe you haven’t been heard. You came here because, dammit you’re angry, and I don’t blame you. 

You may come from a red state like Texas or Arkansas. You may have voted for the President last election; and I get it. You felt them that government wasn’t listening to you and you went with a man who you believed would support you, would stand up for you, and fight for the common man. Many of my constituents did the same thing, and it’s still my job to look them in the eye and listen, even when we disagree. But folks, the President didn’t fight for you. He didn’t just ignore your station, he made it worse. He brought us into a trade war that raised costs, hurt factories and workers alike. Many of you drive a Chevy. Well the policy that hurt the Americans working in those plants and put them out of a job, is the same one that hurts you. They lost a billion dollars to these tariffs. 

But you’ve lost twelve! Twelve billion dollars was taken from you and your fellow farmers. They fought the war but it’s you who suffers, Farmers have been the casualty of this war. And they expect you to take your check and get back to work? That’s a rich mans solution if I’ve ever heard one! Here’s some money, it will just get better. But folks, you’re still hurting! You wouldn’t be here if you weren’t. Mr. Granata from the Midwest told his farmers to grin and bear it. Just hang on. Just hang on?! The hell you say? 

And now he wants to back Governor Sharp who himself acknowledges he can’t do anything about the tariffs. I say, it is your constituents who are suffering sir. It became your responsibility for the three weeks you were governor and not Presidntial Candidate. You have farmers in my state who are getting shafted. His first action wasn’t to help you! His first priority wasn’t about you! Oh he wants to deal with the problem once we get a trade deal, but how long will that take? It’s been three years and we’re maybe getting traction. 

No the sweet words of Stalling shouldn’t be satisfactory to you. It’s not not enough. They don’t plow the fields you do. They don’t sow the seeds, the don’t pull the weeds. And has the President relented? No. He didn’t. He didn’t represent you. The party has abandoned his plan, so they say. This tariff trade policy has failed. I know the GOP doesn’t want to call a spade a spade, but it’s time we stopped beating around the bush and admit what’s in front of us. But I believe, along with my fellow Democrats, that we must fight to continue to make you whole. So we fought for another subsidy, a way for you to sell your food to the government so that we could address hunger. What did the GOP do? The GOP chair said no. Those who don’t feel your pain said “we’ve done enough” But you tel me is it enough?! No!

But we fought and we got it through. Many senators also said no, but we fought and we got it through. And we sent that bill to Presidnt Trump and said “do what’s right by them” and he said no. He said the bare minimum was enough for you. He said he had helped you enough. I wasn’t disappointed I was furious. But action is always the cure when faced with adversity. So I brought that vote back. I’m pleased to tell you this morning two things. First, every single Democrat voted for farmers. Second, we were able to get the votes so that it could pass the House. We have sent a message that when the GOP says the bare minimum is enough, we will say “you can go to hell, I’ll back the farmers!”

Now some of you may be inclined to look at the GOP candidates for president and say there’s hope out there still. But folks, as Governor, Sharp has been a do nothing. Not one farm bill. When asked if he supported a measure for more food banks he couldn’t look a single mother in the bye and say yes or no. While Rep. Vang has talked all the good things he wants to do for farmers, he wants to end the tariffs and is “against them” as he said very early on. He also sponsored a bill that would reinstate tariffs back onto China and many other trading partners. From one side of his mouth he’s against them, yet coauthors legislation that would bring back different tariffs. Right now the Republicans are giving you the options of a do nothing and a say anything. Im sick of the double talk. I’m sick of those who say it’s not their job or those who say they don’t want more tariffs but then want new tariffs. Maybe you are too. 

 If you are, go call your congressman or woman.  Ask them why they won’t fight for you or your families. Then turn around and vote for candidates who will actually do something. Don’t vote for a candidate who will put ina any new tariffs. None. Zero. Not just for President, not just for Congress, vote for a party who fights for farmers. Vote for governors who can come up with solutions, or hell, vote for one who’s man enough to come down here and talk to you himself, who will actually come down and listen to you instead of hiding in that red granite building. Vote for those who will do what they say. Give them hell or vote them out!

And don’t stop here. Don’t quit. Don’t leave until you get answers. I hear you, the Democratic Party has heard you, and soon the whole country will hear you. Thank you. God bless you and God bless America!


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Calvin Ward

I’m not going to take too long addressing Ms. Fitzgerald’s lies. I said that the Trump administration hadn’t done enough. She should twist my words some more and see if there’s any juice left. 

The tariffs imposed by the bill that she and Mr. Bowers are trying to drag to floor would be the worst thing for the economy at this time. I’d like to explain why. 

First, it will double the current tariffs put in place on China. In 2017 China as a nation put out 10 billion tons of CO2. At $25 a pop it is a direct equal to the Trump tariffs. If you think the trade deficit is bad now, double it. If you think farmers are hurting now, they want to double it. Those two are willing to double the tariffs and it will cripple the economy  

Second, it is hypocritical to hold India, Russia, Japan, and others to a standard we ourselves aren’t meeting. Behind China, we’re releasing more CO2 than anyone. And we believe it is necessary to take steps to punish our allies, cripple our trade for the speck in their eye, but haven’t done a damn thing about the log in ours. This bill places 0 requirements on US. We would make 0 improvements in our emissions standards. This is a hypocritical idea. We should rather make improvements, then once our emissions have lowered, we can start criticizing.

Finally, it admits in itself that American families will be hurt; that prices will go up. When we have to buy off the American people to make them feel as if they can make it; it’s a bad policy.  Farmers lost 12 billion, they needed to be bailed out. GM closed up shops and thousands lost their jobs. And instead of fixing it, Ms. Fitzgerald, Mr. Vang, and Mr. Bowers want to make it worse. I’m encouraging all of my fellow Democrats to vote this down. Let’s not pass hypocrisy that would cripple the economy


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Calvin Ward

From the Office of Calvin Ward

“I am never one for inaction, but there are times when must not measure if we must do something, but rather what is the right action. The gentleman from West Virginia has made his points. But let me walk through them and explain my reasoning of why I do not think his bill is the right decision. 

“This bill has nothing to do with farmers or soybeans," Bowers said to the press. "What this will effect is imports on steel, automobiles, fossil fuels; industries that have been long been hurting domestically due to outsourcing.”

That is my concern. It will hurt these industries that have already been put under pressure by the Trump tariffs. GM Has already been hurt by steel and auto tariffs, and they shut down facilities. Many of the gentleman’s supporters in the GOP say there is no proof, they’re welcome to believe the above comments. They also say we should kick the company while it’s hurting, but such an idea doesn’t foster economic growth. What is being proposed is economic bloodletting, the result of which would be thousands without jobs. More tariffs would continue to hurt the American auto industry. 

He also states

Prices will rise maybe about sixty dollars more on average," Bowers said. "That's an average eight hour work day for a minimum wage earner, and for them they'd only see prices rise half of that rate. For a working-class family, that's well worth it for a thousand dollars back in their bank account. And for families who've relied on jobs that have been outsourced or put out of business by the economic blowback of climate change, it's a godsend."

But why would we do something that would increase prices? That seems counterproductive. There are better solutions. 

Which brings me to my third issue, the lack of actually doing anything ourselves. This bill looks at other countries and dictates what they must do without promising to do anything in return. In fact, except for China we are producing more carbon than any other impacted country. We are in effect condemning the specks in our allies eye, while ignoring the beam on our own. It is entirely hypocritical for us as a nation to dictate climate penalties without doing anything on our own. 

If Mr. Bowers has suggested tax incentives for clean ones vehicles or buildings, I’d have gladly supported the bill. If he had suggested that we reign in fracking, expand green energy in government buildings, or found a way to expand electric vehicle stations across the country, I’d have been behind him all the way. And these are good ideas, and the gentleman is free to take these and bring us back a bill that actually addresses our own carbon output before looking at everyone else’s. And if the GOP is finding their green thumb, than it should be Incredibly easy for us to pass those ideas mentioned above through consent very quickly. 

 


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This is a good speech but it fails to make mention of the aid package which was given by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation. Many of the listeners are wondering if you're aware of it. Certainly fires up the anti-tariff sentiment though.

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Calvin Ward

 

 

Calvin Ward spoke in Ames, IA while stumping for Daniela Gonzalez

 

 

”Good evening everyone, it is great to be in Iowa with all of you. Tonight, I want to announce my choice for the Democratic primary. 

It is imperitive that we unify around someone that represents, not just the best of our party, but the best of America. We need someone who has the military experience in order to lead us well. We need someone who’s fought hard for farmers. In my opinion, Daniela González is that candidate. 

She has combat experience that has taught her courage and bravery. She doesn’t just support farmers, she has lived the life. 

But I believe she has the drive and ideas that we need, not just as Democrats, but as Americans. She will fight for equal pay and family leave, an issue that impacts all of us. She has spoken at length on the dangers of tariffs and how they’re hurting our economy. She has pledged to continue pressing for criminal justice reform, in fact, she is the main candidate that about it at length. That is why I’m encouraging every Democrat to get out and support Daniela for President!

 

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Calvin Ward

“Mr. Bowers has plenty on his plate to find time to take shots at me, but I’ll say this. 

I’ve attempted to push through paid paternity leave, Campaign Finance Reform, making sure the LGBT have equal rights under the law and in schools. I’ve nogetiated the budget, working with Republicans, passed criminal justice reform, made sure Bump stocks were taken off the streets, done my damndest to help farmers recover and even got one of his bills up. I’ve fought to condemn white nationalists, among many other things. I’ve represnted my district and my party with pride. I’ve sat in for every debate until this sixth docket and participated in many of them. 

I know he’s upset that he didn’t get to force his bill to the floor. I’ve made my position on tariffs clear, and I believe his goals are unreachable in reality. But maybe if he actually attended a debate and participated in one from time to time, he would see where I am through the day. Mr. Bowers has spoken once on the floor; debate or otherwise, and that was to get his bill forward. I think he should take some time being a congressman before trying to take me to task


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Calvin Ward

Good evening,

A few moments ago, I submitted the 21st Century Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill. This bill is designed to ensure that our borders are protected, that immigration is handled carefully, that DREAMers finally have the path to remain in the only country they have really known, and that businesses obey the law. 

Immigration reform and border security is not a Conservative or Liberal issue. It is one that impacts all of us. This bill has something that every American of every stripe can support. It is a bill of great compromise. 

My desire is to get this bill up and through as soon as possible.  However, I understand that it is a big bill, the largest one of this Congress so far. Because of this, I want to make sure every representative will have ample time to read the bill, look over it, and be prepared to debate it. The American people do not need another massive sweeping bill without being able to read it. I want it to be read and reread, by Congress and the people. Therefore, I will not be releasing the next docket for sometime so that we can take our time and get this right. Thank you. 


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Calvin Ward

 

 

Speaker Calvin Ward spoke at a Democratic Party of Arkansas dinner in Little Rock on immigration reform

 

 

”Thank you Chairman Gray, and hello to all of you! It’s so great to be back in Little Rock, Fallyn and I got to drive around and see some family, some friends, and the rest of you *laughs*

This evening I want to address comprehensive immigration reform.

Now I know that the Republicans are out and angry that i would introduce such a bill. But I think it’s mighty funny. If you spend any time listening to their two candidates talk about immigration reform, they want several things. Almost like your kids come Christmas time, “I want a new iPad. I want a new Iron Man toy” Well our friends in the GOP want a lot. They want E-Verify to be used by employers. They want more money for border security. They want an end to the visa lottery. They want biometrics. They are telling voters that come 2021, they’re going to do it. They’re going to get all of it. Never mind they had two years two years ago when they had the Trifecta of legislation. They’re totally going to do it in 2021. But isn’t it strange, the moment Democrats say, “Ok let’s do it”, all of the sudden the GOP candidates are against it. Now I don’t blame Gov. Sharp, it’s not his place anymore to make these decisions. I’ll come back to his speech in a second. But by their reaction, we are just not budging enough. They say that they will never allow amnesty to be on the table. Never mind that just a few months ago they were ok with it so long as they finally got their wall. Funny thing about these GOP deals, I never get included in them and then they fuss that I never work with them. So we said no; not just because the wall is impractical, it doesn’t do anything to address visa overstay.   

They say it’s failed before. I’m sure you’ve heard it to “Oh this bill failed. It can’t work. This is crazy talk.” Well let’s set the record straight right now on a couple things. This bill passed the senate with almost two thirds majority a few years ago. The reason it didn’t progress was not because of not getting the votes. Rather it is because Republicans in the House decided to take a “do nothing approach”. Doing nothing is what has continued this process for us. Nothing comes from nothing, which is why it’s important that we take up this issue.

But notice what is being said by the Republican candidates. They would rather illegal immigration continue than work together in order to stop it. They would rather lawlessness contribute to be the norm than compromise and secure our border. They love to talk tough, but when it comes time to get the work done, they’re more upset about whose bill it is. 

Now I’ve heard the two gentlemen speak in South Carolina about how against this bill they are. But it would be impolite to not address them. 

Both gentleman argue that the total number of illegal immigrants is higher than what our records indicate. Mr. Sharp believes the number is about 22 million, while Mr. Vang believes that number cannot possibly be right, and is rather 22 BILLION. Yes, seven billion people in the world, and Mr. Vang believes twenty-two billion of them are hiding out in the US. But inability to proofread aside, these numbers are a bit shaky. They cite the Yale study, which came to that conclusion. However, the Migration Policy Institte critiqued this study and showed how the numbers were likely over inflated. Therefore we cannot trust these claims as anything more than he said we said. 

Now Mr. Vang has cited a Harvard poll to show us that a surpassing number of Americans want legal immigration reduced. Now what that has to do with complaints about our bill I’m not sure. We’re allowing for the lottery visa program to terminate and a merit based program to take its place. That already causes the drop, so “you’re welcome”. However we must really be thanking Mr. Vang. Because if he had read the poll he would’ve seen that it also says that when asked about DREAMERs, 77% of Americans say they want them to receive a path to citizenship. 69% think our current infrastructure is not enough. But if this wasn’t already justified our position, here’s the question that every Republican legislator should hear, and especially Mr. Vang: Do you favor amnesty for DREAMERS and a path to citizenship in exchange for more border security and going to merit based immigration. Sixty-five percent say they would favor that agreement. He talks about what the average American thinks, the average American, by his own evidential poll, wants this deal. So instead of a bipartisan deal to get this done as most Americans want, Mr. Vang is just promising more “do-nothing” Nationalism. 

He believes this will cause a labor issue, that we would all of the sudden have millions of new workers without jobs. But illegal immigrants are already contributing. At this point they will only being paying more taxes as wages would no longer have to be under the table. He says this will hurt unions. But there’s power in a union. When more people join, there’s more to bargain for. Rather what he’s expecting is that amnesty will allow for employers to continue to manipulate and mistreat the workers, not treat them fairly. Doom and gloom is all Mr. Vang has. But the CBO has shown that we could see an increase in jobs and GDP. 

 He has said that this bill will only cause a 25% drop in illegal immigration. As opposed to his current strategy of wait now and do later, I will take 25%. They say they want to secure the border? Let’s do it! They say they want E-Verify? Let’s do it! 

But no, they want immigration reform by their way or none at all. No bipartisanship, no compromise. “Ward doesn’t work with us” and yet they don’t call, they don’t ask me to work with them. So if you want true immigration reform, it’s with this bill. If you want it today, it’s in this bill.

But we need our Republican friends too. Real reform does not come when one side beats the other to the punch. Real reform comes when we work together. When we work together, there’s no end to what we can do. I believe our potential is unlimited. We can be a strong, prosperous, secure nation and stay true to the core American values that unite us. That’s what we aim to do. Thank you! God bless you, God bless Arkansas. Good night

 

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Edited by Calvin Ward

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Calvin Ward

“If you’re keeping up, we’re in the middle of a huge immigration reform fight. See as Democrats, we believe in a rule of law. We believe in getting things done and making sure everyone walks away, not with everything but at least something. However, what we’re running into is a batch of Republicans who spent two years with the full ability to build a wall and didn’t, expect us to give them a wall many Americans don’t want, for a deal that many Americans do want. Now Mr. Vang has said by hook or by crook he’s going to build it and stand up to our ideas of reform and give credit to where it is due, the GOP is backing them. 

He says we need a wall the same reasons Israel did, but those comments are shameful. Yes we have crime and drugs coming through, but those are the ones given amnesty in our deal. Meanwhile Israel had suicide bombers coming over and killing people. Over 450 on one year. This is a different situation and Mr. Vang knows it. 

Second, he has said he will build a wall people don’t want. In the summer of 2018  41% of Americans said they didn’t want a border wall. Most of the people who live on the border don’t want a wall. Mr Vang has said he will disregard what Americans think and what those property owners think and run roughshod over them. This isn’t a leader that we need. We’ve had four years of the bull tactics and the insanity, it’s time to let the adults get back to work. 

But the GOP forgets, that Gov. Swanner has already decided to seize upon the private land regardless of what the border residents think. He’s already started construction. This is what happens when we elect the Know-Nothings Nationalists, they decide what’s best, regardless of what you think. 

Sonyoud think the GOP would look at the $5billion on a wall that nobody wants at the State level and say “we’ll thats a wall Calvin” and we could get something done. You’d be wrong. They want more. Anytime we’ve tried to pass immigration reform, the GOP is just never satisfied. They say they want a wall, well they got one. Congrats to them. Do I expect them to be satisfied? No. They’re likely to come back and say we need another $5billion for another stretch. It’s never good enough. 

So here we are. The GOP has gotten a wall but won’t work with us on immigration reform. Which is why I’m laying this at their feet. If the Republican leadership shuffles and does nothing again, every illegal border crossing from here forward rests on them. It was not Democrats who didn’t come to the table. It was not Democrats who didn’t want to protect the border, require e-verify, change our immigration structure and provide for more security. This will rest solely with the Republicans for once again not acting and only making the situation worse


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Calvin Ward

I want to thank everyone for inviting an ol Southern boy to come speak this far up north. I heard a story about a farmer from my district who was selling tickets to watch his wind vane. So this guy drives in from Memphis to see what all the fuss is about. Guy drives up to the farm and walks up to the farmer saying “I’ve come to see your wind vane” pointing to the decorated on the barn. Farmer says “that’ll be $20” the man says “$20?! To watch the wind change direction?” Farmer says “oh no it’s setting the Republican agenda”

Folks, Rep  Vang likes to talk up about what he’s going do if he takes the Office, but has found himself riding the fence far too often. First, when it comes to unions, he says he backs them. Now Mr. Granata says they’re not beneficial to our society, but the working man has every right to organize. I was impressed with Mr. Vang in this. But now the winds have changed. He now says that they shouldn’t spend their money as they please and then turns again and says “eh I’ll let the states decide”. When it comes time to back the unions and do something, he says he will do nothing. That means no change, just the same old same old. That’s not backing unions, that’s doing nothing.

When it comes to healthcare, Mr. Vang has been just as angry about Obamacare as any other Republican. But when it will come time do lead, Mr. Vang says “eh let’s send it down to the states”. That means that the quality of one’s healthcare will be dependent on where one lives. Why should those who live in Wisconsin have less than those who live in New York. When it comes time to lead, Mr. Vang has made it clear, he won’t do anything but shirk leadership and let others do the heavy lifting. That’s not working for healthcare that’s doing nothing.

When it comes tariffs Mr. Vang has preached that he’s against them. Those very policies that hurt our workers and farmers, and killed free trade. But the winds changed once and Mr. Vang wrote a bill that would’ve doubled up the tariffs and require no change in our environmental policy. Is he against them? He wanted to expand them. But then the winds blew again and now he says “eh I’ll remove the tariffs but not right away”. That’s not fighting for free trade, that’s doing nothing. When it comes time to help our farmers and workers, Mr. Vang has said he’ll eventually do something, but in the mean time, he’ll do nothing. Dylan Macmillan has said he’ll send tariff power back to Congress.

When it came to immigration reform, Mr. Vang talks up his huge plan. But when it came time to back a reform bill that included e-verify, infrastructure improvements, and restructuring our immigration system, a bill over 60% of Americans support, he did nothing. He says he’ll do something, but when it came time to actually do it, he balked. 

We need real leadership. Not passing responsibility. Not wind blown policies that change often. Not a do nothing mentality. Dylan Macmillan is that leader. Strong on immigration reform. Strong on unions. Strong on environmental policy. Strong on free trade. Let’s elect a leader,  not a do nothing.

 


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