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Dick Cheney Speaks at Republican Rally

Aired August 2, 2001 - 09:43   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LEON HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: To Washington now, where Vice President Cheney is addressing a group.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

DICK CHENEY, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It's one of the first times we've ever done that that I can recall when we met both the House and Senate side together. Our basic purpose was to come and say thank you, to thank the members for all the tremendous work they have done over these last several times.

I've been involved in one way or another now at the national level in Washington, going back to about 1968, and this is far and away the most productive period I've ever seen in terms of work between the executive and the legislative branch and substantive work that we've gotten done for the American people.

We talked about the tax cut promise that was made and has been kept and delivered. The checks are already going out.

(APPLAUSE)

The most sweeping education reform package in 35 years is now through both Houses, in conference, a tremendous vote last night on the House floor on energy. A lot of the pundits said we'll never get an energy bill out of the Congress, and we had, I thought, a surprisingly strong vote over here last night for a good sound, solid, comprehensive long-term energy plan. We've worked out an arrangement yesterday on a patients' bill of rights and expect that legislation to pass through the House before the members go home this week. There's a great deal of other material in the works.

We've got the Social Security Commissions up and running. We're fundamentally transforming the U.S. strategic relationship around the world as we look at missile defenses and modifications to our offensive strategic arms. The agenda for the future also, obviously, includes Medicare reform and prescription drugs under Medicare for our senior citizens.

There's a lot of work yet to be done, but this has truly been one of the most remarkable six months, I think, in any administration. I've been delighted and proud to be part of it and to work with President Bush. But, as I say, I'm here this morning, as the president was as well, to thank the Republican leadership in the House and Senate and the members who've made it all possible.

We also want to thank a lot of Democrats who actively participated in the bipartisan efforts that were mounted. I know that, specifically on the energy bill last night, we had good strong bipartisan support. That's been true on education. That was true on tax policy, and we know that we'll be able to continue to work that way in the future where we will have widespread support in both parties of Congress to do what's right for America.

(APPLAUSE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Vice President, thank you. It's a great honor...

HARRIS: Well, we were just listening there to Vice President Dick Cheney there, who has been -- is on Capitol hill this morning. He says there he went to there to thank those House members who -- and Senate members -- who have helped push the Bush agenda along.

He says he's seen -- now, the most movement, he says: In the past six months, this has been the most productive period I've ever seen in terms of getting things done.

He says that -- he also ticked off a few of the items that have gotten through the House and the Senate in various forms: tax cut relief -- tax cut -- and, actually, Trent Lott actually held up his tax check, we saw there -- education reform, the energy bill, which was passed in the House. And also he did mention about movement on patients' bill of rights as well.

Now, we should mention that we understand the Democrats will be having an event where they are going to be speaking and giving their side of the story in about another hour and a half from now. And we'll have live coverage of that.

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