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Rep. Emmer on why he thinks Republicans will win the House

Minnesota Rep. Tom Emmer chairs the National Republican Congressional Committee and is leading the GOP’s efforts to win control of the House in November. Emmer joins Judy Woodruff from Minneapolis to discuss his reaction to the Republican National Convention so far and why he thinks his party will win a majority in the House this fall.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    Representative Tom Emmer chairs the National Republican Congressional Committee. He's responsible for the GOP's efforts to win back control of the House this November.

    And he joins us now from Minneapolis.

    Congressman Emmer, thank you so much for being here.

    So, tell us, what did you think? What did your constituents think of last night's opening night at the convention?

  • Rep. Tom Emmer, R-Minn.:

    I thought it was impressive.

    After last week, Judy, where the Democrats came out and literally embraced Bernie Sanders' radical left-wing socialist agenda, and then showed their unhinged hatred for this president, I think what Republicans did last night on the first night of the convention is show everything that's good about America.

    And I'm looking forward to more of that as the convention continues tonight.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Well, I think Joe Biden would dispute that he embraced anything like socialism, but that's a conversation for another time.

    Let me ask you about your job as chair of the NRCC. You have the very responsible position of trying to get as many Republicans as possible elected to Congress.

    Two respected analysts, The Cook Political Report and Inside Elections, are saying that the Democrats are not only in a position to hold on to their majority, but maybe to enlarge it.

  • Rep. Tom Emmer:

    Yes, actually, I would disagree with that.

    I think we have the most diverse slate of candidates in the history of the Republican Party that are running for the U.S. House of Representatives this year. They are going to — they have the message, and they're going to have the resources that are necessary.

    Look, if you look at the special elections, I think people like Karl Rove would tell you one of the reasons the House flipped in 2004 was because of the momentum that Republicans picked up with their special election victories.

    We are now 6-0 in special elections during this cycle. Right now, we have 43 Democrats sitting in seats that are better positioned for Republicans. And we only need 17 to retake the majority.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    So, you are forecasting Republicans will take back the majority?

  • Rep. Tom Emmer:

    Yes, absolutely.

    I think Donald Trump is going to get reelected. Donald Trump has a good night, we're going to have a great night.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Let me ask you about something that the Republican Congressional Committee has issued.

    You have made statements referring to Democratic Congressman Max Rose of New York state as little Max. Now, this is someone who served in Afghanistan. He was — led an Army platoon, wounded in combat, got a Bronze Star.

    Is that an appropriate label for him?

  • Rep. Tom Emmer:

    Actually, what the National Republican Congressional Committee does is, we're that campaign arm, much like the DCCC on the other side, in the House.

    Our job is to make sure that we compare and contrast these candidates. And what we have done, Judy, is, we have made it very clear that these Democrats ran in the fall of 2018 as moderates. And they have come to Washington, D.C., and been just the opposite.

    They're now going to have to run on that record. I'll tell you, you said that Joe Biden hasn't embraced Bernie Sanders' socialist agenda. But these folks have been voting for tax increases, incredible tax increases, amnesty and socialist proposals, like the Green New Deal and Medicare for all.

    This is why Republicans are going to win a majority in the House in 70 days.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Well, Joe Biden has not embraced those things, neither the Green New Deal, nor Medicare for all.

    But just quickly, though, Congressman Emmer, let me ask you about the number of Republicans running for Congress this year who have endorsed the so-called QAnon conspiracy theories, among them, Marjorie Taylor Greene in Georgia.

    She has said that Nancy Pelosi committed treason, should be executed. She said that Holocaust survivor George Soros collaborated with the Nazis.

    Is — are these — is she a candidate that the NRCC is supporting?

  • Rep. Tom Emmer:

    So, we — we put out our list of targeted races 18 months ago, Judy. There are 55 targeted races that we're looking at.

    The top 30, Donald Trump won in 2016. The top 13, he won by six points or more, and several of them by double digits. Those are the races that we need to take back the majority.

    I — and I would say, I understand that people would like to say that this is my grandfather's Joe Biden. But when Barack Obama says himself that, essentially, Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders are the same, which he just did within the last week, I would beg to disagree with you.

    And I think the American public is going to know. The choice is very clear in November. It's between freedom and socialism. And this is why the Republicans are going to win back the House.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    And what about Marjorie Taylor Greene?

  • Rep. Tom Emmer:

    Again, we don't support any hate-driven conspiracy theories, no matter what the organization is.

    And the — the candidates that we're focused on are in the 55 targeted districts that actually will swing the House to Republicans in 70 days.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Congressman Tom Emmer, we thank you very much. Appreciate it.

  • Rep. Tom Emmer:

    Thank you, Judy.

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