WSW: Levin Says Congress Is Giving The Trump Administration A "Blank Check"

Nov 29, 2017

Credit iStock/Svetlana Larina

Former U.S. Senator Carl Levin says Democrats can win the Congressional seat in Southwest Michigan because the public wants changes in the House.

Levin was in Kalamazoo to campaign for George Franklin, one of six Democrats running to challenge Republican Congressman Fred Upton next year. Levin says right now Congress is “too much of a blank check” for the Trump administration.

The Democrat who served 36 years in the Senate says the Republican tax bill is one example. Levin says the benefits are skewed to the very wealthy. He says many of the deductions that are slated for elimination currently help middle income taxpayers. Levin says the bill will provide more incentives for moving manufacturing overseas.

Former U.S. Sen. Carl Levin watches during the unveiling of a photo of the USS Carl M. Levin during a ceremony Monday, April 11, 2016, in Detroit.
Credit Carlos Osorio / The Associated Press

Levin was interviewed on Monday, a day after Michigan Congressman John Conyers announced that he would step down as ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee. Levin says he thinks that was the right move while the House Ethics Committee investigates sexual harassment allegations against Conyers, as well as allegations that money for a settlement with one staff member was paid from his office expenses, in an effort to keep the agreement secret.

At the time of the interview, one House Democrat had called for Conyers to resign from Congress. Levin said he would not render judgment on whether Conyers should resign his seat, until there is a finding from the House Ethics Committee. But the former Senator says the public should know the details of settlements reached over sexual harassment and other workplace issues.

In the extended version of the interview, Levin discusses work at the Levin Center at Wayne State University (about 9:25 mark of web version). He says the center focuses on in-depth, bi-partisan oversight of federal agencies.