Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) brought up left-wing riots during an interview over the weekend when asked about the recent media coverage surrounding the January 6 riot following the release of thousands of hours of video footage from the incident.
Mace made the remarks during an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” when asked by fill-in host Kaitlan Collins what she thought about House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) giving 40,000 hours of footage to Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
“I said early on last month that the release of the footage was important, that it should be released to every outlet, including CNN, every media outlet, every defense attorney, so that the public can see for itself,” she said. And there was violence on that day. You cannot deny that. And it was a dark day in our history. But so too was the summer of 2020. We saw very few arrests when there were attacks by an organization, members of Antifa and Black Lives Matter. I had my house spray-painted two summers ago, and no one’s been held to account for that.”
“And so we have got to make sure, if there’s going to be political violence in this country, no matter your political affiliation, everybody is treated and should be treated the same way,” she added.
CNN's @kaitlancollins asks Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) if she plans to join fellow lawmakers Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and James Comer (R-KY) in visiting January 6 defendants in jail. @CNNSotu #CNNSOTU pic.twitter.com/bEZuFmx86y
— CNN (@CNN) March 12, 2023
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN HOST: Welcome back to STATE OF THE UNION. I’m Kaitlan Collins.
A preview of a potential 2024 showdown between the former president and the former vice president, as Mike Pence unveiled a new attack on his former boss behind closed doors in Washington last night.
What does the emerging power struggle, though, mean for the future of the direction of the Republican Party?
Joining me now to discuss is Republican Congresswoman of South Carolina Nancy Mace.
Congresswoman, thank you so much for being here this morning.
I want to start with the scathing comments we heard from former Vice President Pence last night. He said: “I know that history will hold Donald Trump accountable for January 6.”
Do you think he’s right?
REP. NANCY MACE (R-SC): And good morning, Kaitlan. Thank you for having me on this morning.
And I see this in two parts. I think both sides are really struggling looking at the nomination process. You have got some on the left that don’t want Biden to run. You have got those on the right that don’t want the former president to run. A lot of folks on both sides keep bringing up January 6, and it’s keeping us from moving our country forward.
I was very vocal about January 6 myself. I’m one of the only Republicans in the House who defeated the former president in a primary last year, went on to win my general election in a purple district resoundingly.
We have got to unite behind a candidate in ’24 who can win the White House if we’re serious about it. There’s a lot at stake right now.
COLLINS: Well, given that, Trump is the front-runner of the Republican field right now. So do you think he has been held accountable for January 6?
MACE: Well, he’s one of the only candidates in right now. And I imagine, by June and July this summer, we will see more than two or three candidates in that race.
The Iowa caucuses aren’t for another 330 days. And that’s the start of it. I’m proud of my home state of South Carolina. We will be the first-in-the-South presidential primary next year. We have a long way to go for additional candidates to jump in and see how the field lays out.
COLLINS: On January 6, Marjorie Taylor Greene and Congressman James Comer, who is the chair of the Oversight Committee that you serve on, have been planning a trip to visit January 6 defendants who are in jail.
What do you make of that? Would you join them on a trip like that?
MACE: I’m not joining them, but I will say this.
I have done a lot of civil rights work over the years as a state lawmaker and as a member of Congress. In fact, the very first bill I ever filed or helped work on in my freshman year was with Hakeem Jeffries on a civil rights piece of legislation.
I would tell you, anyone who’s sitting in solitary confinement or sitting in jail, regardless of their political affiliation, if they feel like their civil rights have been violated, then we, as members of Congress, should help them. And this is something that I have worked on a lot over the years and something that I respect.
I was the ranking member on the Civil Rights Committee on oversight with Jamie Raskin last year. That’s something that we should all care about, the constitutional rights of citizens of the of this country.
COLLINS: But, given that, the other thing that Pence said last night was, he said it mocks decency to portray what happened on January 6 as tourist, as sightseers.
Obviously, we saw that happen on FOX News this week after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy gave them 40,000 hours of footage. You have said you want other people to get that footage. Was it a mistake, though, for him to only give it to one outlet to portray it as they did?
MACE: I said early on last month that the release of the footage was important, that it should be released to every outlet, including CNN, every media outlet, every defense attorney, so that the public can see for itself.
And there is — there was violence on that day. You cannot deny that. And it was a dark day in our history. But so too were — was the summer of 2020. We saw very few arrests when there were attacks by an organization, members of Antifa and Black Lives Matter. I had my house spray-painted two summers ago, and no one’s been held to account for that.
And so we have got to make sure, if there’s going to be political violence in this country, no matter your political affiliation, everybody is treated and should be treated the same way.
COLLINS: And we agree that CNN should also get access to that footage. Many media outlets would.
I want to talk to you about the budget, because you just heard from the White House budget director about President Biden’s proposal. When are Republicans going to release their proposal?
MACE: I would like to know that as well. There’s been a lot of discussion internally about what that might look like. The Freedom Caucus has put theirs out. We’re still having that discussion.
I will tell you, and the comments by the director of OMB on this program a few minutes ago were disturbing to me, just not even as a member of Congress, but as an American, that this is nonnegotiable. The administration is talking about a $5 trillion tax hike.
That is not tenable for individuals and businesses, given the inflation that we’re facing right now, given the possible recession that we’re heading into. We should be negotiating on this issue. This shouldn’t be one-sided, because both sides, Republicans and Democrats alike, have caused the inflation that we’re in today.
They have caused the $31 trillion of debt that we’re facing right now. Both sides should be sitting at the table and coming up with a reasonable plan, let’s just say over 10 years, to tackle spending, to tackle taxes, to tackle inflation, so that we can get on with this and grow the economy in a way that can tackle the $31 trillion deficit that we have, let’s just say over 10 years.
I don’t think that’s a lot to ask.
COLLINS: Yes, I should note the White House’s budget, they say would really — would reduce the deficit by about $3 trillion over 10 years.
But you just mentioned that proposal from the House Freedom Caucus. Do you agree with that proposal?
MACE: I haven’t read it in detail, so I don’t want to make a comment on it if I don’t know the specifics of the plan. The president’s plan just came out. I did read some media reports that said it would not reduce the deficit.
And so I want to look at it with an open mind and look at it from the economists from both sides of the aisle to figure out what it is. But what I did read was a $5 trillion tax hike on individuals and businesses. And if you’re going to be serious about inflation, for example, there are a number of things that we have to do.
You have to tackle spending. You have got to look at how we’re spending taxpayer dollars. You have to look at lowering taxes. You have to also grow the economy exponentially in a way so that it can — it can take over the inflation and the deficit issues that we have right now.
That’s what you got to do.
And we should note…
MACE: You can’t do it by raising taxes.
COLLINS: … the White House’s plan is basically dead on arrival, given Republicans control the majority in the House. We will wait to see when Republicans do release their plan.
I want to ask you about the collapse of SVB. That is something that everyone is waiting to see what happens when markets open tomorrow morning. As a member of Congress, do you think that they should get bailed out by the federal government?
MACE: It’s still — it’s still very early to see or say what the ramifications are going to be. That was a unique bank that mostly served start-ups in Silicon Valley.
And those customers have been hit by inflation. They have been hit by interest rates. They’re low on cash. There was also, it sounds like, a panic run by some of their larger companies last week. The CEO sold himself millions of dollars of stock and gave his employees, I read this morning, bonuses right before the government took over the bank.
We cannot keep bailing out private companies, because there’s no consequences to their actions. People, when they make mistakes or break the law, have to be held accountable in this country.
COLLINS: OK, so just to confirm, you don’t support a bailout, right? Is that what you’re saying?
MACE: Not at this time. COLLINS: OK.
MACE: I would — it’s still very early. Again, it’s, I don’t even think, been 48 hours. But, at this time, I would not support a bailout.
COLLINS: I want to ask you about something your fellow South Carolinian, Nikki Haley, said. Obviously, she is running for president in 2024.
She said this week that she supports the — raising the retirement age for people who are in their 20s when it comes to receiving Social Security benefits. Do you agree with her on that?
MACE: I think that’s something that has to be on the table we have to look at.
I’m 45 years old. I’m assuming that Social Security will be insolvent, that I won’t have retirement funds from what I put into in my adult life, my working life. We do have to look at Social Security. We have got to look at our spending in this country, mandatory and discretionary.
If we’re going to take on fixing the Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, you name it, we have got to get serious about it.
COLLINS: OK, so you do — you do support potentially raising the age to maybe extend the…
MACE: As long — as long as it’s not anybody that’s heading into retirement right now.
We do not want to take away those that are in retirement or those that are heading into retirement. But if we’re talking about younger generations, my kids, for example, if they know what the — what the retirement will look like 40 years from now, 50 years from now, then that should be on the table, and can be.
We have to both. Republicans and Democrats have screwed this thing up, and they have got to fix it.