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Rep. Zeldin: Lawmakers Discussed 'Challenges,' 'Strategies' at GOP Retreat

(Newsmax TV's "Newsmax Now")

By    |   Friday, 02 February 2018 09:45 PM

Last week's GOP retreat allowed lawmakers to reflect on their recent accomplishments, but also gave them the chance to discuss "challenges" and "strategies" for the future, Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., told Newsmax TV's "Newsmax Now" on Friday.

"Not only are (lawmakers) reflecting on what we worked on recently in the past, but you're talking about challenges that we're facing now and different strategies and ideas on how to tackle it moving forward," Zeldin said.

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Among their accomplishments in 2017, Zeldin pointed to the nearly 100 bills Congress passed that were signed by President Donald Trump, including changes to Obamacare and income tax reform. He explained it was easier to get legislation passed in the House rather than the Senate.

"On the House side, we can pass 1,000 different proposals in 2018 to get the 218 votes. But that's the big question, what can the Senate pass? I don't know," he said.

In the days ahead, Zeldin said he expected Congress to tackle immigration, infrastructure, getting people back into the work force and possibly entitlement reform.

"I definitely see (entitlement reform) as a possibility for 2018. The timing couldn't possibly be any better with all of the available jobs that are out there and with all of the able-bodied adults, especially those without dependents," he explained, adding the system often worked against parents who faced losing Medicaid if they worked.

"There's something wrong with our system when we're penalizing people re-entering the work force, that they're going to end up, somehow, maybe they might feel like they're being a bad parent because they're taking that entry-level position," he maintained.

Though Zeldin said the event was "busy," he described it as an "abnormal" start on Wednesday when a chartered Amtrak train carrying dozens of Republican members of Congress to the retreat in West Virginia crashed into a garbage truck. One person on the truck was killed and several others hurt, but no serious injuries were reported among lawmakers or their staff.

The three-day retreat featured appearances by President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. Zeldin described it as a hectic pace that included a variety of topics.

"One hour might be with (Defense) Secretary (Jim) Mattis and Secretary (of State Rex) Tillerson talking about foreign policy in our military. The next one might be with Secretary (of Transportation Elaine) Chao talking about infrastructure," he said.

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Last week's GOP retreat allowed lawmakers to reflect on their recent accomplishments, but also gave them the chance to discuss "challenges" and "strategies" for the future, Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., told Newsmax TV's "Newsmax Now" on Friday.
lee zeldin, lawmakers, challenges, strategies, gop retreat
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2018-45-02
Friday, 02 February 2018 09:45 PM
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