VICE PRESIDENTIAL DEBATEOctober 9, 1996
JIM LEHRER: Mr. Lehrer: Mr. Kemp, speaking of the - where to you come down on that? Do you believe it should be repealed, the Family Leave Act?
MR. KEMP: I wouldn't have voted for it. It's in place. Their answer, this administration, to every single problem is another regulation and another tax.
Clearly, in America we need - I - I am astounded to think that you can have a strong family leave act or policy by a business if they're not making a profit, if there aren't a lot of jobs, if there isn't the type of policies that will enhance the formation of the seed corn and the oxygen and the capital that would allow that company not only to retain that profit but to invest it.
As I said earlier, Dana Crist of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, who runs a small little manufacturing or distribution center in Lancaster said that she, as an entrepreneur, would start a whole new factory if the federal government would cut the cost of capital. She wants the capital gains rate reduced. And to - to Al Gore and Bill Clinton, that is somehow trickle-down economics. Tell that to Dana Crist. Tell it to Van Woods. Tell it to the men and women that I met in South Central. Tell it to anybody who understands how to make democratic capitalism work.
I want to say it one more time: the real excitement of a Dole-Kemp administration would be to get out of this current tax code that redistributes wealth and create a brand new system for the 21st century as pro-family, pro-growth, and stops the double-, triple-, and quadruple-taxation of income from work, savings and investment and entrepreneurial risk-taking in America.
VICE PRESIDENT GORE: The question, as I recall it, was about family and medical leave. Here's how it works. If you have a child who is critically ill or has been seriously injured, and you have to stay with that child in the hospital, some employers have said you can't take too much time off, in spite of these circumstances.
I personally know people who have been fired because they made the choice to be with their child. Don't tell me this doesn't happen. It happens all across the United States.
But since Bill Clinton made this the first law he signed, it has been used 12 million times by American families to reconcile the demands of work with the responsibilities to the family.
We now want to extend it to PTA meetings and scheduled doctors' appointments. It shouldn't be repealed; it ought to be extended. Seventy-five percent of businesses who have had experience with it say they like it, it works.
MR. KEMP: Well, it was here before Bill Clinton and it will be here after Bill Clinton.
Senator Tsongas, a good friend of Senator Gore - Vice President Gore - suggested that he was afraid his party was falling into the trap of loving the employee but hating the employer. You cannot love labor and hate employers. You cannot drive this wedge between workers and management. And businesses were providing family leave. They will continue. They should. They've got to make a profit. And the tax on business, capital, labor and families is too high, and it won't - we want to reduce that regulatory burden and that tax burden in a new Dole-Kemp administration.