ICYMI—Hagerty Joins Maria Bartiromo’s Wall Street on Fox Business to Discuss Debt Ceiling Negotiations, Biden’s Weakness Against China

February 13, 2023

WASHINGTON—United States Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN), a member of the Senate Appropriations and Foreign Relations Committees, joined Maria Bartiromo’s Wall Street on Fox Business to discuss the lack of seriousness from the Biden Administration in both their approach to debt ceiling negotiations and the Chinese Communist Party.

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Partial Transcript

Hagerty on the need for fiscal responsibility: “This whole point of bait-and-switch tactics that [President Joe] Biden is using is, again, just trying to fearmonger America. There is no reason in the world that we have to put the full faith and credit of the United States at risk to try to get our fiscal house in order. What we’re trying to do right now is deal with massive overspending. We have a spending problem here in America, and what Joe Biden is arguing is that we need to give a blank check, or we’re either going to put the full faith and credit and Medicare, social security at risk. That is not what we’re saying at all. We need to get our fiscal house in order.”

Hagerty on President Biden’s tone-deaf State of the Union Address: “The approach has been very unserious. If you think about that speech, he spent more time talking about resort fees than he did talking about China or our border. It took him an hour to get to China. These claims, frankly these bold-faced lies in many cases, talking about taking credit for getting jobs back that major Democrat cities caused to be lost because of all the shutdowns. That’s just false advertising.”

Hagerty on the Biden Administration’s weakness toward the CCP: “It is absolutely amazing that the Biden Administration would constantly posture from a position of weakness rather than try to place America in a position of strength. Strength is what China appreciates. That’s the way we need to be addressing the threats from China. There’s been zero accountability. We have not held them to account since Joe Biden took office, and China’s just taking this to the bank by floating a balloon across the entirety of the United States of America. They were testing us, Maria. They were testing us to see what our resolve would be. And I wonder what would’ve happened, Maria, if a news publication in Montana had not seen this—had not made it clear to the public? Would [Secretary Antony] Blinken have gone ahead with his trip to the CCP [and] taken the photo-op with President Xi? I think you really have to wonder what is going on in this Administration.”

Hagerty on the Chinese spy balloon: “According to the State Department, the balloon had antennas on it that are capable of picking up our communications on the ground. I’m certain what they were doing is monitoring everything, particularly over our military bases. They floated over my state, Oak Ridge National Lab, very sensitive operations and facilities there. All across the United States, this balloon was capable of collecting very material, very sensitive information. And I tell you what else shocked me, Maria, to hear this Pentagon quote a ‘senior official from the Pentagon,’ an unnamed official, coming out and trying to deflect blame to say that this had happened in the Trump Administration. Again, if it did happen, it went undetected. This is seriously classified information. It reveals a lack of capability. That should have never been used in that manner. Using classified information in that manner for political purposes, again, reflects this Administration’s weakness and their tendency just to look to political excuses and to deflection.”

Hagerty on the Biden Administration’s refusal to hold the CCP accountable: “I can assure you, if that had happened, the Trump Administration would’ve dealt with it. If the Trump Administration [or] political leadership had known anything about this, they would’ve dealt with this. You know, there’s a lot more to come out on this, but I think what we’ve got is clearly a situation where the Chinese Communist Party has tested the Biden Administration [by] floating [their balloon] for multiple days across this country. The American public watched this, the world watched this. America’s response was weak. The Biden Administration is not dealing with the situation as it should. We let the Chinese Communist party, again, flood our country with fentanyl killing our kids. Covid has been unleashed on the world with no accountability, and the Biden Administration is now worried that the CCP may be angry with them for knocking out the balloon. This is preposterous.”