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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  June 12, 2015 4:00am-6:01am EDT

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conversation with the candidate continues. >> welcome back to conversation with the candidate. tonight's guest is former florida governor jeb bush. time to get the questions. ...
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nothing gets done because there isn't the leadership to forge consensus. in my post gov.'s life i've stayed actively involved. we created a foundation to deal with education reform. that works in 40 states. we work here to help the effort to pass a scholarship program in
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new hampshire. i've been actively engaged in all sorts of causes and involved in business and i've been a successful governor. >> let's go to the next question from brenda mcdermitt. >> if president what would you do differently regarding land? what would you do to harbor the development of nuclear weapons? >> either we won't have a deal by the end of june or we will. most people believe the people really want a deal so bad that he'll just get one. it creates a real problem i1. it creates a real problem i think because depending on what the deal says as it relates to verification, we are at least excepting iran as a nuclear threshold nation. other countries in the region that feel cut threatened by them for good reason, because they are making efforts to destabilize destabilize the reason region as we speak. imagine a world with persian
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gulf countries and iran both having nuclear capabilities. it is one of the biggest challenges of our time. i hope i hope this deal gets scuttled. i hope if it is done it's verifiable. i hope the congress asked to have a voice in this industry proven if necessary. i'm afraid all the stuff leads me to believe that we will eliminate sections, the iranians are going to have missile defense capability that the russians and the ability to have a military deterrent or use sanctions to get iran to join the community of nations is going to be minimized. it's hard to tell what the options are but i think we i think we need to be vigilant in the region and vigilant as it relates to the intentions of iran.
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while we are negotiating with them they are sponsored in hezbollah and shiite groups. they are participating through sponsorship in yemen of a complete unsustainable situation there. they are helping fund support for hamas and of course they are involved in trying to destabilize the persian gulf country. this is not the kind of country you can actually think will be someone who will fulfill their agreements on any agreement that is forthcoming. >> thank you very much for the question. >> governor bush you have been quoted as saying, i think the best way to repeal obama care is to have an alternative. could you please tell me what that alternative would look like and how you would ensure that low-income children and their parents here new hampshire do not lose access to the care they currently receive? >> great question, i think
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politically just being against something, you something, you run out of gas at some point. i think people generally know that republicans are against obama care for a lot of good reasons. we have to be for things if we are going to be successful and govern and lead. my believe is, first of all it relates to protecting those near or at the poverty level. we have existing programs that have nothing to do with obama care. we've protected those programs and they are important for low income families. in a medicaid program could be a catalyst for improved healthcare as well. unfortunately obama care doesn't reform medicaid. i medicaid. i think we should be shifting these programs back to the state, creating some criteria
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around them and then allowing them to innovate and create better outcomes and more focus. in florida we did this within powered care, it was called for medicaid. we gave choices for low income families and we gave them counseling and allowed them to pick the plan that best met the needs of their families. we actually created a families. we actually created a higher premium for those who had acute info illnesses and a lower premium for those were who were healthy. the result was we lowered costs and got better costing got better care. as it relates to the broader obama care issue, i think the exchanges without all the mandates is not a bad thing. in fact it was a conservative entity that propose this a long time ago. we shouldn't have employer mandates and employee mandates and all the mandates that it create these extraordinary costs. people should have costs. people should have choices. i think ultimately we should move to a consumer directed model for healthcare where you have low premiums, high deductibles for businesses and government wherever appropriate
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they provide premium support. where you have catastrophic coverage. what you're saying as a society as if someone has a life-changing illness, their family won't be devastated for a long long while. give people that peace of mind and give them choices and focus on preventing disease more than just reacting to disease. it is so extraordinarily expensive what we have now. i think we can do that. the other thing i say is embrace the technology and our mists. i'm so proud of my little iwatch. i haven't been able to figure out how to use it yet but i know for a fact, five years from now, these devices can be used to now, these devices can be used to monitor your health, send wireless messages to make sure if you're not taking your medicine right your healthcare provider knows or your caregiver knows. making life allowing people to take in control of their own control of their own life. i think we can lower cost and improve quality of carefully do that. >> let's take one from social
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media. are you on facebook governor? >> oh yeah. >> we follow twitter but i don't necessarily read i don't necessarily read all the nice things that people say to me. >> i noticed that anonymous is kinda scary. people can be really ugly. >> were back to foreign policy now, what will you do to stop isis from committing terrorist acts in the us? >> first of all we should approve the patriot act for crying out loud. this is so troubling to me that as time goes on our memories fade. in the passage of the patriot act, a decade ago one of the tools that has kept us safe and kept us free. people just repeat the belief that somehow our sibyl lever civil liberties are being violated. there's no evidence of that. people just keep repeating something as though it will be
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accurate. there are safeguards in these programs to protect our civil liberties. there is evidence that these programs has helped us be safe. the first thing safe. the first thing i think of is to protect our shores and protect the homeland. to keep us safe and the patriot act is one element of that. i would say first and foremost right here in the next few weeks, we need to pass the patriot act. second i act. second i would say we need to reengage in the region in the world. as we pulled back and as we lead from behind, this new language that is so uncommon for american leaders to talk about, we've created voids. those voids are filled by islamic terrorism and by aggressive nationstates. the united states is not a case of war or holding back. there is a middle ground that has been the night bipartisan
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ground. we lessen the chance of putting boots on the ground and men and women in harm's way if we are engaged and develop relationships with our allies that they know we have their backs, starting with israel. including the other traditional nations. that is how we regain our footing in syria and iraq. it doesn't mean we are going to have a hundred thousand troops on the ground. it does mean people need to know we are serious and we are engaged in this. we need to create a coalition to narrow isis influence and take them out. that can be done. it shouldn't be done for political reasons. i find it troubling based on watching history unfold from my perch that everything seems to be political eyes now. you have to make sure that you are marrying the sentiments of
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the here and now. the minute there's a terrorist attack or now. the minute there's a terrorist attack or beheading, americans say why are we in an environment that is not secure. presidents need to lead and have a strategy. this this president doesn't have a strategy as it relates to isis. >> the next question. >> i've already spoke about energy on the campaign trail. perhaps trail. perhaps you saw a poll that said 80% of republican voters in new hampshire think energy is a priority. >> energy is kind of the life blood. to get it right will allow us to have a commitment to conservation and reduce carbon emissions but also allow us to re- industrialize the country to give consumers the first good deal they've gotten in six or seven years. when you think about lower
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energy prices which is occurring in most places as it occurs to our utility bill and gas prices this has happened because of the energy revolution that's taking place in our country. i find it interesting and i repeat this a lot because it does show the difference between people who believe in freedom and free market and people pursuing their dreams as they see fit compared to the progressives that think they are smarter than the rest of us and craft these proposals and ivory towers or in rooms where bureaucrats hangout in washington d.c.'s. so compare the revolution that has created this explosion of increase of natural gas that has brought lower prices for consumers and now investments to reinvest the country. the stimulus was provided smart people from great universities in the northeast were put in the room and said we are going to pick the winners.
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this company that company turns out that the free society where people are pursuing their dreams creates more innovation and better results than the smart central planners. i think we should apply that lesson as it applies to energy overall. they're all sorts of sanctuaries and we've created this industrial policy as it relates to energy. i think we should faze all of those things out in a a thoughtful way and let the interaction amongst us and the desire to progress in conservation be the two principal means by which we balance our economic interests which we need to grow far faster in our environmental interest which arm important as well. >> thank you for the question we only have a few minutes left. let's go to our next question. >> governor bush welcome.
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you supported a ballot initiative in 2002 that a ballot initiative in 2002 that required florida to provide access to pre-k for all state four -year-olds. is that a goal that all states should set and if so what role would you play as president in encouraging more access to early education question mark. >> i think states should decide that. in the florida case this universal pre-k or voluntary pre-k was a great idea because we had a real strategy to ensure that more children were functionally literate by the end of third grade. we were lagging behind for sure. florida has 57% of its school-age kids are free and reduced lunch qualified. there's a lot of qualified. there's a lot of family strong leg in my beloved state. we thought if we moved to a literacy ace for-year-old program and combine it with any social promotion in third grade, if you're functionally illiterate you don't go to fourth grade in florida. we would change the system. with system. with robust accountability to get these four -year-olds in
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environments that were safe and healthy as well as focusing on literacy. training teachers how to teach reading and all of that together created the greatest gain in reading in any state in the country. we have 70% of our four -year-olds participating with government support in for-year-old programs. it's the largest voucher program in the country by the way for those who thinks this isn't a conservative idea. 80 or 90% of the kids are in private providers. and it works. we have had gains in learning that would defy your imagination. i do think in the case of florida is the right thing to do. i don't think washington should be dictating anything. educating our children has to be in national priority. one third of our kids or maybe
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40% of our kids are college or career ready. i know we have 80% graduation rate in high school but that's not relevant if you can't get into college and start taking college-level courses. starting early and having accountability and empowering parents with choices, all of that is part of an effective strategy. >> thank you very much for the question. we only have about question. we only have about a minute to go. a lot of people are probably wind wondering when you can expect you to make a decision. >> a decision. >> while the decision is coming soon. i've been all over the place and listening and learning a lot and were getting to the point where i need to say yay or nay. i'm excited about getting to that point so if i can get going on this i can be more direct about the ideas i have about the future of our country. >> have you learned anything on the campaign trail? hillary clinton said she was surprised to learn substance abuse was such a problem. >> i've always known that. as governor we dealt that. as governor we dealt with a huge tragedy that people talk about. i've learned about heroin addiction in new hampshire with this high-grade heroin that is now imported. it's a serious problem. you go to other places and you
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see methamphetamine. we do have a soft underbelly in our country with domestic violence and a lot of challenges that people come up and talk to me about because they know we were involved in it when i was governor. >> were i was governor. >> were going to continue this discussion but this will and the tv portion of our interview. we have ted cruz coming up next. why we are signing off from television tonight don't forget this conversation continues online as well as our mobile mobile app. the be more questions and commercial free. thanks very much for watching have a great night. jeb bush will make his official announcement on monday in miami. there will be live coverage starting on c-span three.
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>> in march senator ted cruz became the first republican to enter the 2016 presidential race. he sat down in manchester new hampshire last month to talk about education, isis, and healthcare. >> good evening everyone and welcome to our conversation with the candidate. our guest this evening is ted cruz. we'll be getting to know him and where he stands on a lot of the key issues. to start the show i'll be asking him some questions and after break will bring in the studio audience to ask questions in what is a town hall style format. before we get to any of that let's take a look at his biography. >> ted cruz was born in elk canada but grew up in texas. he graduated from princeton university and harvard law school.
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he served as the director of the office of policy training at the department of justice. he is also the solicitor general of texas and an attorney at a private firm. he taught litigation at an adjunct of instructor. he argued 43 oral arguments including nine before the u.s. supreme court. he was elected to the u.s. senate in 2012 and considered himself a passionate fighter for limited government increased growth and constitutional rights. rights. he and his wife live in houston with their two young daughters. with that, senator cruz, good to see you. >> crate to be here. >> let me start here by asking a question. you are warning canada. any questions surrounding eligibility there. >> there are no serious
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questions. my mother was a u.s. citizen. u.s. law has defined the child of the u.s. citizen born abroad as a natural born citizen. a citizen by birth which is what the constitution requires. it's actually, but number of times. john mccann kane was born in panama. mitts romney's dad was born out of country. barry goldwater was born in arizona before arizona was just a territory. the legal question comes up multiple times but it's clear that a child born abroad is a natural born citizen. >> a natural born citizen. >> you spent a lot of time in new hampshire but for those who don't know you the national persona of ted cruz way far to the right guy who's convicted in his belief but won't reach across the line. is that accurate?
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>> know it's silly but i don't think anyone is surprised that the national media doesn't always present a fair picture, especially of republicans. i'll tell you what i set a compromise announced this is what i said i'm compromise announced this is what i said the day i was elected. i'm happy to compromise with anybody. i've joked that i will compromise with martians if they are willing to shrink the size and power of the federal government and willing to pull back on the debt and deficit that is hammering the future of our country. what i have tried to do in washington and what i was focus on are some common sense principle. don't bankrupt our kids and grandkids, follow the constitution, it's only in washington d.c. or in the national media that those are viewed as radical orix dream propositions. if you get a hundred americans together at any state in the union and ask do you agree with those propositions, those propositions, those are basic common sense values. that's what we need to do to turn the country around.
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national security and isis is a huge concern in this country. they're talking about arming the sunnis. what is your take and what will be approach. >> i think we've seen for six years that the obama clinton foreign-policy is a manifested disaster. it doesn't work. leading from behind what that has resulted in today our friends and enemies don't trust us. one of the first things president obama did was he took the bus to winston church hill and returned it to the u.k. as an opening statement that this is the kind of administration you are going to see. if you look at the relationship of the nation of israel. we've never seen a president more antagonistic to the nation than this one. including just a few months ago when president obama boycotted the prime minister's address. on the flipside our enemies do
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not fear us. every region of the world has gotten worse. all across the globe. right now we see isis not long after the president dismissed them as the junior varsity. isis is the face of evil. they are beheading children and journalists. >> so what we do question mark. >> we need a president who will stand up for u.s. national security interest, who will confront the evil we face. you cannot win a war on radical islamic terrorism with a president unwilling to utter the words radical islamic terrorism. were looking at this bizarre doublespeak coming out of the white house where those words are never uttered by the president, he will not define the evil we are facing. what we need to do is have a president who will stand up and say we will defeat radical
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islamic terrorism. we need a military strategy to take out isis. what that should entail is overwhelming airpower directed at taking out and destroying isis. number two we should be arming the kurds. the kurds are longtime allies of us and they're fighting us right now. isis has american military ice weapon tree that they have seized from iraq. the kurds are fighting without class weaponry and this administration refuses to arm the kurds and they send the weapons to baghdad. the kurds are at a very real sense our boots on the ground but the problem fundamentally, is that we haven't set the objective of destroying isis and we don't have a commander-in-chief who pursues it seriously. >> you have been a very soft-spoken critic of the president but in your estimation
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has he done anything right? >> osher. when he was elected, there wasn't a person in america who wasn't hopeful that this president could be a transformational figure. that this president could bring us together and unify us. he had and inspire inspiring personal story. he was the first african-american president. he had the potential to become. he campaigned saying there weren't red states and blue states but we were the united states. we hoped that states. we hoped that was what we would see. part of the reason it was so disappointing is it there was promise there and yet he has proven to be the most partisan president we have ever seen. he has govern like a hard-core left just jamming through policies that have hurt millions of americans. you ask if he's done anything good. we've all been very glad that we
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have finally captured and killed osama bin laden. those of very good thing and we salute the brave field team members who took out bin laden. that took far too long to happen. but i'll tell you right here in washington, pres. obama doesn't you, right here in washington, president obama doesn't talk to members of congress. he doesn't talk to republicans or democrats. you want to have an interesting conversation, get a democratic senator or member of chris when the tv isn't on over a beer and talk to them about how the white house doesn't have any conversations with them and just doesn't alone with an imperious this. that's why almost everything he's done has been through an executive order and dick ties to against the constitution welcome back to our conversation with the candidate.
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ted cruz with texas is here let's get right with the audience questions. >> let's get it started with angela. take away. >> when it comes to the discussion about immigration republicans are often wrongly labeled with immigration. i believe our current system is prohibited. would you create support a streamlined policy that would be similar to a modern-day ellis island? >> absolutely. i think you are exactly right. when it comes to immigration i am short-term pessimistic and long-term optimistic. the reason i'm long-term optimistic is because i believe there's a lot of bipartisan agreement on immigration outside a washington. we have to get serious securing the border and finally stopping the problem of illegal immigration. i think there is also considerable bipartisan agreement on what you just asked
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that we need to improve and streamline legal immigration. we immigration. we need to remain a nation that doesn't just welcome but celebrates legal immigrants. i am the son of an immigrant who came 58 years ago legally from cuba. when my dad came from cuba he was 18. he couldn't speak english. he had $100 in his underwear. he had been imprisoned and tortured in cuba but he came here to wash dishes making $.50 an hour to go to school and go on and have a business. today he is a pastor just outside of dallas. we are all the children of immigrants. we are all the children of those who risk everything for freedom. i think the way to resolve immigration right now, the reason i am short-term pessimistic is because administration is not seeking to solve this problem but they are focusing on amnesty and a path pathway for those here in the country are ready.
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you need to focus on common area of bipartisan ground. if i'm elected that's exactly bipartisan ground. if i'm elected that's exactly what i hope to do is bring people together on common ground to pass commonsense immigration laws. >> thank you very much for the question let's get the next one. good evening senator. >> speaking on behalf of senior americans, is social security with the current funding plan it schedule it to go out a money with that in 17 or 18 years from now. what things do you have planned for making sure that doesn't happen and securing social security for today's seniors and future generations? >> it's in an incredibly important question. i think what washington is doing is reckless. as you noted it is letting them
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go toward insolvency and bankruptcy. we need leadership to step in and save and preserve and strengthen certain social security. the way to do so, those are fundamental bulwarks of our country. for those seniors who are on country. for those seniors who are on social security or near retired, there should be no changes whatsoever. we made promises and they have counted on those promises and we need to honor the commitment. for younger workers, i'm 44 if you talk to people my generation, it is hard to find someone in their 20s or 30s or 40s who believe social security will be there for us. that gives an opportunity for reform. if you have a couple generations who understand this thing isn't working and we need to reform it with leadership we can do that. how would we do it? three simple reforms would improve social security for the younger generations. number one gradually re- raise the retirement age.
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when they sign social security into law the retirement age was 65. average life expectancy was 62. now we are living just north of 78 years on average. we need to gradually raise the retirement age and give them time to plan on it. we need to change the rate of growth of social security benefits. it needs to match inflation rather than exceeding inflation. but third and this is the piece that i think is most important, for younger workers, we need to give younger workers the opportunity to take a portion of their tax payment and have it go into a personal account that they own, that they control and can grow at a compounded rate of interest and that they can use
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themselves or they can pass on to their kids are in kits. the answers in term of how we preserve and make sure social security is there not just for seniors but for the kids and grandkids and their grandkids grandkids. the answer is just simply to have leadership in washington. what's been sad is that right now you don't have leadership in washington. you don't have people willing to take on the hard issues and work together to reach commonsense solutions. what more can be done to implement the affordable care act in rule areas, inner cities and healthcare companies? >> thank you for that question i think it is not a great secret that i am not a fan of obama care. five and half years ago when congress was debating obama care, reasonable minds could have differed. they could have thought this was a a good idea and it might work. after we have seen after five years of implementation, there is a reason that obama care is 37 per percent approval. it is
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the single's single approval. it is the single's single biggest job killer in america. many people have lost their job, been forced to part-time work, has lost their health insurance and has seen there's premium skyrocket. president obama said if you like your health insurance plan you can keep your health and insurance plan. that wasn't a true promise and many americans lost their plans. i'm happy to see anyone who has seen their premiums go down by $2500, i would say vote for the democrat. on the other side we will take the other portion of super americans. i think we should repeal every word of obama care. it didn't work. i think it is the essence of
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pragmatism and realism to recognize this isn't working let's repeal it and start over. what we do will we over. what we do only start over? part of your question was improving healthcare and that is absolutely important. i i think healthcare reform should follow three principles. it should expand competition, it should empower patient patients and it should keep bureaucrats from getting in between us and our doctors. how do we do that? let me mention some policy reforms. number one we should allow people to purchase health insurance across state lines. that would created to true 50 state national marketplace. if you want more access and more chase choices and lower cost but it what does obama care do? fear choices and do? fear choices and higher cost. secondly we need to expand health savings account so people can save in a tax advantage way for more a tax advantage way for more protection. third we need to work to delink
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health insurance from employment. a lot of people don't know that it's actually a historical inaccurate and an accident that health insurance is typically linked to employment. it came just out of world war ii when we had wage and price controls in effect. employers couldn't read recruit employees with higher wages so they began offering perks like health insurance. the problem is we don't live in the 1950s anymore. most of us don't go work for company for 40 or 50 years, get a gold watch and retire. we are mobile, transient flexible population and we move from city to city and state from city to city and state to state and industry to industry. if you are i lose our jobs we don't lose our life insurance. we don't lose our tout car insurance or house insurance. there's no reason on health insurance. there's no reason on earth we should lose our health insurance and it's the worst one because that's what creates much of the problem of pre-existing conditions. conditions. when people lose their health
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insurance a man can't get a new policy. i think we need health care reform that makes health care personal, portable and affordable. >> think you very much for the question thank you very much for the question let's keep it moving. this one is going to come from social media. are you on facebook? >> oh yeah. >> facebook? >> oh yeah. >> what is your stance on common core. >> that's an easy one. i am categorically opposed to common core. i think we need to core. i think we need to repeal every word of it. i think education is far too important for it to be governed by elected bureaucrats in washington. i think education should be at the state level and even better at the local level. heidi and i have two little girls who are four and seven. for everyone of us who are parents or grandparents, if there's curriculum that's being taught to your kids that doesn't make sense or doesn't look like your values, it's not getting
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the job done. but some bureaucrat in the bowels of the department of education, there's not a education, there's not a darn thing you are i can do about it. they don't care what the individual citizen thinks. if it's the school board you can walk up to the school board member and say this doesn't make any sense, you can organize parents and speak out. if they still don't listen to you you can decide to run for the school board. that's how the system was meant to work, accountability work accountability at the local level. is there any baseline for standardized local tests? i think baseline standards can be a reasonable policy decision for states or local governments to make. it shouldn't be the federal government. what is happening, it's interesting, some folks on the left say when i say repeal common core they say it's not a federal standard. that's nonsense, nobody's paying attention to what the obama administration is doing because they're using race to the top
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funds to chorus states into adopting these national standards. the standards in new hampshire don't have to be the same as the standards in arizona. you can make different decisions. decisions. it should not be the federal government sticking its nose in. >> next question. >> what you think of the supreme court decision around citizens united and do you support those calling for an executive order to drag contractor dark money into the light question much. >> it's a great question with lots of complicated issues. let me give my big principle in them will go to specifics. i am passionate i am passionate about the united states constitution. i have spent pretty much my entire adult life fighting to defend the constitution. the very first amendment in the bill of rights protects our free
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speech. campaign finance or form is an issue that i think many people misunderstand. it is explained to you often without a lot of truth from politicians. every time campaign-finance reform laws are passed they are passed by incumbent politicians. their intended effect unsurprisingly is to help a politician. with federal law you currently have strict limits on how much can be given to a particular candidate. who that benefits are people who are already incumbents who have massive fundraising apparatuses. the people at hertz are challengers. there is an interesting story that ed rollins told. he described how reagan at the time was an actor in california and there were eight small businessman in california. car dealers, not bill gates type but small business type. they sat down with him and said
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ron, you share our principles you've got backbone and you can communicate. what will it take for you to be elected governor of california question mark ragan apparently said it's going to take between two and $3 million. those eight california businessmen sat down and wrote checks and raised $2.4 million once city. those small businessmen changed the fate of the world. jfk when he ran had a handful of donors that came together. when you put the massive restrictions in place, what it does is it cycles stifles challengers. i introduced legislation in 2014. the current system, by the way is stupid. the current system has super packs in the super packs look like they will have much more
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money and you are not allowed to talk to the super pack about what they are saying. i hope they say something vaguely resembling what i believe. it's idiocy. no one would design a system where you have the bulk of the political communication being from a third party who is not allowed to talk to the candidate. it should eliminate the limits that individuals can give to candidates. it candidates. a required immediate disclosure within 24 hours. what that would do functionally is every super pack would go away. people would write checks to the campaign and people would be reported within 24 hours. if you thought something was unfair that would be up for discussion. i'm a big believer discussion. i'm a big believer in free speech. spit citizens united was a straightforward application of the first amendment. how many people know the facts of citizens united?
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let me share the facts. citizens united made a movie criticizing hillary clinton. citizens united is a case that citizens united is a case that arose as the obama administration tried to find a movie maker for daring to make a movie critical of a candidate. they have every first amendment right to criticize me all day long and the government shouldn't be fining moviemakers or book publishers. we should be empowering the free speech of american citizens. that is what i citizens. that is what i believe that sunshine is the best disinfectant and we should empower citizens to speak i believe citizens united was correctly decided and it should've been 90 because the question of can the federal
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government fine a movie maker for daring to make a movie critical of a politician? under the first amendment is not a hard question. question. we have to go. >> that's all the time we have on television right now but don't forget we are continuing this conversation with senator cruise online and you senator cruise online and you can get it on our mobile app as well. you will find 30 more minutes from our student studio audience. all of it is commercial free. thanks so much for watching. have a great night. 217 to 212 with
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34 republicans voting against the manager and eight democrats in favor. they're scheduled to take up and vote on these bills tomorrow morning. live coverage starts tomorrow morning at nine on c-span. >> next to house. i'll looks at effort to help u.s. children who are abducted and held in foreign countries. countries. we will hear from officials from the national and exploited children organization and the state department. governor chris christie chairs the committee on human rights. >> we will come to order. good afternoon. first of all you apologize for starting late. we did have a series of 14 votes in the session. i apologize for the lateness in getting underway. i wanted to especially thank all of you for being here today and
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all of our left behind parents that i see in the audience. the thousands more who are here in spirit and deeply concerned about their abducted child. i think you for joining us this afternoon to review this report. international parental child abduction rips children from their home and families and whisks of them away to a foreign land alienating them from the loving care of the parent in the family left behind. child adduction is child abuse and it continues to plague families across the united states. every year an estimated 1000 american children are unlawfully removed from their home by one of their parents and taking across international borders. less than half of these children ever come home. the problem is so consequential in the state department previous approach of quiet diplomacy was so inadequate that congress unanimously passed the golden
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act to give request for return and access. these actions increase in severity and range from official protest through diplomatic channels through extradition and the development of security for others foreign assistance. it is a law calculated to get results as we did in the result of the return of sean from brazil in 2008. laws only as good as its implementation. brokenhearted parents across america waited for years for this act to become law and still await full u.s. government implementation of that law. the state department first annual report that we are reviewing today should be a roadmap for action. the state department must get this report right in order for the law to be an effective tool. if the report fails to accurately identify, the actions above are not triggered, countries should be listed if
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they have high numbers of cases 30% or more that have impending over a year. or if they regularly have return orders or failed to take appropriate steps and even one single abduction case pending for more than one year. once these come countries are properly identified, they then identified, they then determine which action the u.s. will apply to the country in order to encourage the timely resolution of abduction cases. the state department has a choice of which action to apply. they can wave action for up to 180 days. the state department does not have discretion over whether or not to report accurately to congress on the countries record or whether the country is objectively a noncompliant nation. as we have seen in the human
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trafficking context and i know i offered both the trafficking act it is especially in comparison with other countries can do wonders to bring about much-needed reform. active reporting is also critical to judges across the country .-period-paragraph considering their child traveled to a foreign country or abduction or access problems are a risk. the stakes are high. incomplete information could mean the loss of another american child to abduction. for example abduction. for example a judge might look at a report filled with zeros in the unresolved cases category and erroneously conclude that a particular country is not of concern and give permission to an estranged spouse to it return with the child for vacation. that makes the parent allow them to abduct the child and the
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other parent spending many years and money trying to get the child returned to the united states all of that could have been eliminated. i am very concerned that the first report contains errors and major gaps. for instance, a case in india that has consistently been it has consistently been in the top five countries for abducted americans had 19 new cases in 2014. twenty-two new cases and no resolve cases. we know that india has 53 open of ducted cases and 51 have been pending for more than one year. the report also shows zero new cases in tunisia. and yet they will testify today
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to her more than three year battle to bring her children home from tunisia. there are ongoing objections in tunisia all of which have been ongoing for more than one year. japan is a country that has never issued or enforced a return order for a single one of the hundreds of american children's abducted there and is not listed as a country failing to return. in march near the two months before the report, i shared information to this committee that congress expects japan will be evaluated not just on its handling of new abduction cases after it joined the convention
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last year but on its work to resolve all open abduction cases including the more than 50 cases with states for at least the past five years. among those cases is sergeant michael elias who has not seen his two children since 2008. he served as a marine who saw combat in iraq. his wife worked in the japanese consulate. she is documents obtained to kidnap their children then age four and two in defiance of a court order. michael knew there was nothing he could do because i she said my country that is japan, will protect me. their country sent a high-level delegation to met meet. they discussed why japan should be excused despite the fact
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after one year of signing the act, japan has a zero return to the united states. just before the report was released two weeks late the deputy director of the foreign affairs was told he had been in conversations with the state department that we strive to make an explanation to the u.s. side and i hope the report contents will be based on our reports effort for return. return. in other words japan got a pass and escaped the list of countries facing action to resolve abductions from their country. our country has failed to protect our people as they have
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seen no progress to bring back his children. i traveled with his parents to japan and met the brick wall that he has face for seven years and trying to move that case along and get the state department to hold japan accountable by naming japan as an offender in the annual report. it is disappointing, it is discouraging and i believe it is disgraceful. the report white watches washes japan. it failed to include a single one of the more than 50 cases. thirty-six of which have been dragging on for more than five years according to the national center for missing and exploited children. instead it listed japan as having a 43% resolution rate. japan has never issued an
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enforced return order for an american child. these are american citizens who need the help of their government to return their children. all accounts are to be accounted against japan. the report's conclusion of 46% resolution is truly indefensible. not a single parent was allowed in person contact over the last year. they have given them new and powerful tools to bring japan and other countries to the resolution table. the goal is not to disrupt inflation but to heal a painful wound caused by child induction.
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if they said this would hurt our relationship with allies if we stood up against this. i persisted and we got the law passed and we have proven itself to be a way of saying friends don't let friends a way of saying friends don't let friends commit human right abuses and we need to speak out with clarity and provision and based on the fact. i fact. i do appreciate the departments presence here to discuss ways we can improve the report and ensure that it fulfills the purposes for which it is intended. namely the prevention of abduction and the reunification of thousands of american families that have suffered forced separation for for too long.
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>> thank you mr. chairman. as mr. chairman. as the chairman said i am the second newest member of the house. i was elected and sworn in four weeks ago. my previous life i was a district attorney in my experience with custodial abductions was limited within our own nation. i look forward to hearing from the parents and i think i think you for coming to share your grief with us. i'm also the father of a newborn three -week-old daughter so my heart goes out to you and i also look forward to hearing from our distinguished panelists to hear what our government is doing for you. thank you very much. >> i would like to introduce our two distinguished panelists beginning first with karen christiansen who has served as the deputy secretary of state for overseas abductions since 2014. most recently she was the minister counselor for counselor affairs at the u.s. embassy and learn where she coordinated
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operations at several posts in germany. prior to that she was in millet. she has also served in washington and the office of the executive director overseas. she served in london, progressed, warsaw and seoul. she served as an instructor in the counselor training division and a career development officer. her full background will be made part of the record. his previous assignment was counsel general at the u.s. embassy. he is a career foreign embassy. he is a career foreign service officer who joined the department in 1989. he was promoted to senior foreign service in 2013. his previous posting include american institute in taiwan,
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the conflict general in shanghai embassy and embassy nicosia. he has also served as a country desk officer on central african affairs. the floor is yours. >> chairman smith and members of the subcommittee, thank you for this opportunity to discuss international child abduction and review implementation of the sean goldman act. including the department of state first annual port under this new law. law. the department values your continuing interest in support of our efforts to prevent international parental child abduction. we want to facilitate the return of children to their homes and strengthen the convention to include more partner countries. our mission is to assist
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children in families involved in international parental child induction :
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>> your continuing support. our work and our ports you. thank. thank you command i look forward to your questions later's. >> distinguished members of the subcommittee, thank you. sorry. chairman, listing with members of the subcommittee thank you for the opportunity to appear before the subcommittee regarding our work in the office of children's issues to present and resolve international
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criminal child abductions and to implement the 1980 hague convention of the civil aspect international child abduction, international child action remedies act lashawn and david goldman international child abduction prevention and recovery act. our offices were torrents is the new law was enacted to analyze and translate provisions into concrete actions such as collecting 40 knew data 40 new data fields for every case. my focus was on sharing his 1st report containing all the information required by law. the information in the 2014 report naturally is different than the previous annual compliance report on international child action. the 2014 report represents the 1st initial effort.
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american press timeline with data gathered in the months after the law came into effect we work diligently simultaneously to make sure that as we implemented law we maintain the offices ongoing work in support of families affected by international cell production. mr. chairman distinguished members of the subcommittee we are committed to fully implementing a lot in our shared goals of. appreciate. the comments and questions to inform the work were doing. thank you command we welcome your questions. >> thank you very much. tell us in what ways has the state department made japan
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aware of the 50 plus subduction cases predating japan's ratification of the hague convention? and do we give there foreign ministry or competent entity a list of abduction cases? >> mr. chairman, we have discussed the central authority which works on hague cases. other parts of the foreign ministry which have the lead on pre- hague cases. we have raised the issue of pre- hague cases with both sides of the japanese foreign ministry. we have also raised it at senior levels of the japanese government and continue to do so's. >> says that is the case it is perhaps and oversight but maybe more.
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the goldman act makes it very clear that there must be accounting of all unresolved cases. i will redo the pertinent part. title i department of state actions that each annual report shall include a list a list of all countries in which there was one or more abduction cases during the preceding calendar year relating to a child with the residents of the united states including a description of more detailed information. the idea is one case in the whole preceding calendar year. and yet in reading the report on page 17 it says japan objection cases unresolved cases zero. and elsewhere in the report it does mention.
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but the way of evading putting japan on the list -- and there are 22 countries, as you know because you compile that, compiled it, who are on the list to have shown a pattern of noncompliance somehow through just excluding these 50 plus cases that information has been given over to the japanese government as just indicated command i no that because i have been talking to our people in tokyo as well as at the state department here. they do make representation on behalf of individuals. and it is baffling beyond words. unresolved cases zero. >> one of the things that we have been working very hard on in the past's does the law was enacted is devising a report that calls for new data that we were not using before the legislation also
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contains new definitions. one of the issues that we have encountered is that the definition and the definition of the law and unresolved objection cases one that remains unresolved for more and 12 months after the data. what we found is that it was determined that we cannot include any cases. application for access and so on. let me reiterate we look forward to working with you and others to make this report is comprehensive and understandable and effective a tool because we shared his desire that this report be something the members of the public, members of congress, judges command others can use.
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>> we share that concern and i do believe that we do. but the definition of unresolved objection cases the term unresolved objection case means of abduction case that remains unresolved for 12 months the completed application is submitted for determination to the judicial or administrative authority has applicable in the country in which the child is located. we have made representation to the japanese government on behalf of these case files to return the child. of course access is usually a part of it, but custody we all know is something that we hope will be done at the
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place of the residents. i'll take a definition to be more clear. and i juxtapose that was something that secretary jacobson said some -- in 2013 i became very concerned i do think that we need for a case not a case not covered by the convention we need to reach an agreement with japan. comment whether we are close to reaching a bilateral agreement. but then she said -- and this is very disturbing that i think unsuccessful to get them to cooperate with us because most of the relationships a very complex's. and she says i don't think we're going to sanction japan or threaten them with sanctions because i think that would be detrimental to our bilateral relationship. i believe passionately.
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security and economically. again we have a situation here the fix already and back in 2013. when it came to the overpass the goldman act you have a table i think this is theater of the absurd. it's how could that be zero? 's llc how you cannot include that. even in your footnotes you acknowledge. later on in the narrative think you've done a great disservice.
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>> i just want to say i don't think the fix was an, there was an intention and not fight japan's. i think as explained when we read through a lot of internal discussion this definition here it was a feeling that those cases did not meet the definition as written and in law but it was precisely because of our concern for those 50 cases that we did discuss them at length. they continue to remain of great concern to us. ambassador susan jacobson will be going there very soon to japan. these cases are going to be a subject for discussion. we continue to attempt to resolve and establish some protocol with japan for the resolution of those cases. those cases are definitely at the forefront of our thinking. we also understand that among those 50 cases about 30 of them have actually followed -- file cases for
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access and are working through those cases. >> again, these are desperate to a loving parents who have been frustrated to nausea with the lack of responsiveness by us, the us the us government, and especially the japanese government. just let me make a. you talk about application. we made it clear that the term application is the case of a non- convention country the former request of the central authority of the united states to the central authority of such a country's requesting the return of an abducted child. i presume i presume on each of those outstanding cases which is now in excess of 50 and become soft -- because some have a stunning given up perhaps there not eating that that anymore, surely an
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application to japan on each and every one of those. i asked is kind of questions i'll be making a representation? what do you do with the file? have this file. of course you convey it to the japanese in a persuasive manner. >> we and the report as you no doubt -- and the logistics of the report we count of the applications for return has applications for return file under the hague. it will get back to with a more detailed answer on the pre- hague cases and exactly what was done. let me say that we have -- this is very much a focus of our office and embassy in tokyo. i have been in meetings ambassador jacobs, other senior members have been in meetings. so there was no attempt on our part to evade this issue
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were somehow push it onto the table. it's very much in focus. it's. >> i look forward to the explanation. we hope if she is amenable to its ask ambassador jacobs should we come back in july. a 90 day review timeframe's. this could be amended. i believe based on the clear language of the goldman act japan should be the 23rd nation. it is the most self evident of all the countries, and there are some. i'm glad you have brazil, india, and other countries. i do other countries. i do note that in your unresolved cases number on india amazingly in. as a national center for florida missing children from over 50 cases well. it's zero there, too. i'm working with several cases myself including one
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she is testified twice before my committee, been to the state department, doing everything possible. and unresolved is and unresolved is for multiple years. we do need -- and maybe you can amend this. i do believe it's an egregious. >> again, we worked with the definitions as our experts determined. the case is not in the report and does not mean we are working with that parent or the case is not a concern again, this is something we are concerned within our office. again: what the reporter for the work our office is doing and be an effective, useful tool. we also want to comply with the terms of the legislation >> as i said in my opening getting the protection act is a serious human rights
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issue. always argue get it right. part two, sanctions regime there is a very generous waiver of the president thinks that it's in the best interest of the issue itself as well as other interests like national security that national security where he is not obliged to impose sanctions. getting a report right. judges will read this and say zero unresolved cases in japan. no problem there. and since somebody off. children and get abducted. >> thank you. either you. either of our panelists, how many children and families are we talking about? >> as of june 1 our office has a total of 919 outgoing.
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children taken from the united states abduction and access cases. the cases may involve more than one child. the totals about 1285 children. as the chairman has said and others have noted we rely largely on cases that are reported to us. there are cases that are out there that are not reported to the central authority that may not be in this figure. >> as each family have a liaison that informs them of the progress of the case? do they have to inquire been a general number and try to find somebody? do we have someone is working with this particular family? >> the office of children's issues is divided up the region. each each region has a country officer. if you are familiar with our regional bureaus work as a country desk officer we
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have a similar set up in the office of children's issues. we have country officers who are experts and work with families in particular countries and regions. we have people who work with families who are affected by abduction cases involving brazil or china or russia or japan or other countries. >> as the chairman pointed out toward particular country that we feel is not complying, other countries that are very complying that could be models for others? >> there are countries that we have a very good working relationship with. it is -- we are engaged in -- like other aspects of our relations with other countries some countries for example we might have a very good working relationship with the central authority
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to win might have huge problems with judicial authorities or law enforcement authorities not complying or other elements of the government. in other cases there are issues with just volume. a country we work very closely with. because of its proximity to the united states they have far more children being abducted to mexico and from mexico to the united states than any other country. that relationship is far different than a relationship with the country were many are one or two of actions, but it varies. we are struggling to be. some countries were trying to work with elements within the government to bring along other elements of the judiciary or law enforcement to achieve returns of children. >> my final question, one stumbling blocks the countries don't recognize the judicial determination of parental rights in our country and therefore don't recognize in their country
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as a reason to assist in getting this. back with a child. >> the department of state we are big advocates of the hague convention because that is a mechanism whereby countries can -- i'm simplifying, but of simplifying, but effectively recognize judicial decisions made in other countries to get children back. there are countries were left behind parent does have to file custody applications for the court case in the judiciary in that country. the legal systems, as you know, very from country to country. >> i apologize. please don't be offended. >> thank you very much. a few file questions. when you raise when you raise the senior members of the japanese government to tell us how senior that is? 's.
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>> we have raising the senior members of the foreign ministry. we are actively discussing the the embassy in tokyo other ways that we could raise this issue. i -- the cases -- the instances -- the recent cases i'm most familiar with our senior members of the japanese foreign ministry. >> okay. the names. just get back to us. >> if a a country has a lot of cases but is otherwise compliant do you consider that a case result? >> am sorry. if the sorry. the question? >> of the country is allow the case to go on for six weeks the hague prescribes
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but is otherwise compliant with the requirements of the treaty do you consider that case result? >> one of the things that we are working with is the definition of result in unresolved cases. we have cases that kind of fall into the middle. we have we have -- and the report defines a result case for the definition of the law. the same time our office by close a case for other administrative reasons for for example, rejected by the central authority. that case would still be unresolved in the annual report. we do have cases that have not been resolved or come to some sort of conclusion that they don't meet the definition of unresolved been in a have been with the foreign judicial administrative authorities for more than four months. this is another area which we look forward to working with you and others to make
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the report more clear and more useful. >> tell us how many abduction cases oci currently is open? >> yes. the figure i have is currently as of june 1. i apologize. the office is a total of 919 outgoing abduction annexes cases that involve 1,285 children. we understand that there are cases that are not reported to us. that is our open case load as of june 1. >> india. i actually had secretary kerry when he testified earlier this year about
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whether or not he raise the case and what pres. obama raise the reduction of child abduction. he just that we continuously raise international child abduction cases inappropriate meetings which is now standard. e-mails the go back and forth from your office. but just but just to drill down on that, again individual cases of my own state. they have gone on for years. the unresolved case that for india like japan zero. that is like a body blow to long-suffering left behind in this case. her kids taken away from her. she's tried everything and is counting on the us government to be the one entity that can make this come to fruition. >> i very much understand the concern. again, for this report we use the definitions that
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were in the legislation. that doesn't mean we don't have open cases in the office of children's issues. the case you send and others are very much a concern. we are pressing the indian government to resolve the. again, one of the things that we look forward to working with you and others is how to make this report a better reflection of what we're doing and the numbers of people and so on that we are working with. >> looking forward to doing that. i will read it again but the unresolved abduction case definition in public while 113 150 his as clear-cut as i could possibly imagine. we worked hard to make sure that there was clarity, predictability and no one we will be confused, no ambiguity. confused, no ambiguity. unresolved means an abduction case. a completed application for
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return. judicial or administrative authority. request of the foreign ministry and whoever else. and yet we have zero. please can i ask respect if you could reopen this issue with regards to the report.
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>> what definitions we were using. our goal is to try to comply with what was required in the report and says this was a new way of looking new definitions, we weren't sure exactly what we would end up with and where would take us and it really is our goal to have a report that really is responsive to the interests and concerns of everyone involved. as i might say one thing's the act is much more than the report. we believe that a lot of the measures are going to have a significant impact and so we are grateful for those measures and look forward to developing those. >> from title iii. have you had any sense? >> we did have another one. dod was involved in april.
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at at those meetings what is evident is that sort of inner agency meeting does surface ways that we can remove barriers to communication within the us government which i think will provide a lot of benefit and will see a lot of good results from. 2,013. if we do need to reach an agreement with japan while we close to it? is there an active discussion? 's. >> this is something that is director of the office has been a fair amount of time discussing. it's something that we are extremely anxious to achieve
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command we will keep you updated. >> and i would note one part of the prevention screen is just data that does reported accurately. i want to thank you. additional questions which i like to submit for the record and i appreciate you coming. please get back to us. the ambassador might be available before the 90 day has lapsed. >> thank you, sir. >> thank you. a new jersey resident. three years old. cpl it works almost 21
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years. he and his wife are both naturalized us citizens. from 2,004 to 2012 and then that's when was supposed to be a five-week vacation india. they have been fighting for their sons return for three years. advocating for return of all american children abducted india. we will then here from edmund barbero, the mother of a slump in the lab from age one and six respectively were immediately abducted by the father to the republic of tunisia.
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successfully returned to the us with her daughter that continues to seek the return of her know that it's on. following her children's abduction she initiated an organization to bring awareness to her family's case. today there is a mission to educate the public to the international child abduction issue. advances of this mission through its membership the aston the parent network parents organization and stakeholders. we will then hear from christopher savoy a member of the american bar association section of science and technologies lobby data committee, a licensed attorney technology
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executive and data scientists currently senior manager of enterprise architecture where he oversees the company's global efforts and big data. started his technology career in japan where he founded one of japan's 1st and my consulting firms and became founder and ceo where he invented and commercialized national language understanding technology behind apple. he also founded the networks publicly traded pharmaceutical company that utilizes inventions for novel pharmaceutical. he will speak about his child being abducted in just a moment. then we will hear from mr. preston family legal counsel for missing children division of the national center for missing and exploited children.
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he provides legal technical assistance and training for law enforcement attorneys, family members and the public regarding international and domestic child abductions including children have been taken by a parent or family member. edited and co-author the national centers mitigation guide for attorneys handling cases of a child abduction convention as well as investigation and program management guide for law enforcement agencies responding to cases of missing and abducted children. a former prosecutor and government attorney. i would like to now introduce. >> sorry about that. thank you, mr. chairman for
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the opportunities because you today about the ongoing obstacles the victim parents face. cofounder of the nonprofit organization. more importantly i am a father who has been unable to meet with his children for six years due to japan's complicity. my nightmare began back in august of 2009 when my ex-wife told me she wanted to take the kids back-to-school shopping. little did i no in a few short hours my children would be on an airplane in the air and on their way to japan known haven for parental child abduction.
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slightly less painful is my ex-wife facilitated phone calls between my children are capable like the majority of parental abductors my ex-wife max weber there parents do not grant me access to my children. my phone my phone calls are ignored, packages a refused, and my letters are sent back the state department and for me that there working on my case. we had meetings, phone calls, and even more meetings, town hall townhall meetings in which i met scores of other parents. their their children were stolen to japan. i was assured state department was raising the issue of my case and other cases. now, briefly a like to share with you research. the national center for missing and exploited children says the parental abduction is damaging and extreme which are medic. the office of juvenile justice and the language in debug language to prevention says parental abduction profoundly affects the victim children with
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long-lasting consequences. the fbi says parental abductions are often born of one parent selfish desire to retaliate against the other parent. the american bar association subject says parental abduction is child abuse and that the fx process, are deeper long-lasting. in my 1st meeting michelle bond currently acting assistant secretary for counsel affairs said to me at least there with their mom. at least there with them on. you you would think someone in such a high-level position would have known about studies or that the u.s. congress stated that parental child abduction is a felony crime. this is my 1st
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introduction into the world of oci whoever flabbergasted by the states department passive aggressive and demeaning treatment. it's obfuscation as was the state department's habit of fudging londoners. i was actively communicating from the beginning. 2009 .-dot 2010, 2011. it became more and more noticeable that they liked outrage. it's vastness of who's either on. the language seem slippery. i asked my's i asked my's caseworker at the state department ever formally demanded the return of my children. march 92011 i was told the
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state department has not formally demanded the return of any abducted children. let me say that again the state department has is not formally demanded the return of any abducted children. if they are not demanding a return then what are they doing? i never received a satisfactory answer. well, here i have a few years older and wiser hold a copy of the state department report on compliance. forty-two pages. each of these numbers represents one or more actual american citizen children. each one of these numbers is a real significant human rights tragedy and i believe this report is
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mischaracterized and underrepresented. the eyes of congress. the truth is when it comes to japan cannot be compliant japanese lawmakers expressed explicit concern. please allow me to explain this to compliance with the letter or the spirit of the convention. in japan every divorce results in a total loss of all parental rights are one of the parents.
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that's right. under japanese law he may completely amicable divorce is they will decide which parent will retain parental rights. the result of this is the one parent must by law have his or her parental rights terminated becoming legally a total stranger to my non- parent and child. the non- parent may not have any decision-making nevermind guaranteed visitation. decisions of her medical care, access to a child. contort the numbers japanese law is only one parent. as far as mandated access and visitation is concerned
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they have never developed any enforcement mechanisms because in its own country they would never create a system a system to enforce visitation was someone who is legally stranger. with the with the state department suggests that japan is medically compliant with the convention we must ask them how it's possible when the japanese government itself admits a divorced parents have no parental rights at all. how can japan be compliant with without any possible parental rights of visitation rights or visitation enforcement not only for parents but for their own japanese citizen parents. the answer is simple japan cannot be compliant legally, culturally, or practically. get the state department misrepresents the numbers in order to claim that japan is compliant when they know that this is not true. in fact in order to shine a spotlight on the underlying issue of so parental rights
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my client u.s. navy captain paul tolling is also very parent to his daughter filed a lawsuit challenging the very basis of this legal reality asking for what would be considered a natural human right the sole surviving parent after a divorce and a divorce and death of a spouse be granted physical custody of his job. right now the child is with a grandparent who refuses any and all access to his daughter. the promise of the lawsuit that a biological parent has a fundamental right to his or her own child has made national headlines japan. because several japanese experts state in the japanese press this case brings to light the star cultural differences between japanese and us culture and concerning fundamental rights. again, japan center does not recognize the parents like me, paul toland like so many others have any rights whatsoever to parent our children.
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now, in addition to the abduction case the case of the state department refers euphemistically is access cases. cases like mine which because her kids were abducted before the hague convention japan claims it cannot be forced to return them. even in these cases the convention under article 21 requires 21 requires the central authority remove all obstacles to visitation with her children, all obstacles. in an e-mail dated june 32013 my caseworker told my attorney that the jca claims it is not there responsibility to facilitate agreement despite the fact that my ex-wife only wants to communicate through the jca. my case thanks to the state department unwillingness on ability to advocate remains in a catch-22. the only entity through which my ex-wife we will communicate and is claiming that it is not responsible
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for mandated access. and in fact on a recorded interview with australian broadcasting corporation the director of the convention division a japanese ministry of foreign affairs admits verbatim that japan cannot enforce any sort of access. in fact, the state carved out what appears to be in outlook section. awaiting submission and already cases are excluded for the purposes of compliance. once a case is submitted and forced into the late mediation a litigation the state department is taking the position that the japanese central authorities off the hook. once a case is submitted
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that when they can watch the hands of our responsibility to provide access. so even if the court takes ten years to provide one hour of access to a child the country can be considered compliant for purposes of the act. under an under an exception that is nowhere to be found in the language of the act. what is completely unforgivable is that this numerical shell game is absolutely to the detriment of american citizen children for crime victims. voices of reform including high-level officials who want to see a change. condemning the current system in japan. sugarcoat reality laws and practices change for the better. people like justice manager yoko, cal in direct response to the case was quoted in the newspaper saying that
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they should be based on the best interest and not just on who has been raising a child's. japanese imperial minister should be regarded as child abuse and not fit in at those who deny visitation should be given visitation. the japanese up in court stated publicly there is an increasing scrutiny of these cases and that it is the responsibility of japanese courts to regain the trust of the people by studying the real estate affairs of japan. these reformers understand how far behind they really are. wiser department still covering up? at the end of the day will we need to do is acknowledge what the problem is coming from.
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no one seems to want to talk about it. the elephant in the room is the inherent conflict of interest problem in the subduction cases. a very good cost in direct conflict with the interest of our children and the children of japan's japan is advocacy would require the state department to publicly shame and reprimand japan for its complicity in kidnappings and is truly barbaric so parental regime. the state department officials have told us the military bases in japan and the economic interest that we have to not allow them to demand compliance with japan the strategic relationship is too important too important to advocate for children, too important even when an act of congress the goldman act in this case requires them to publicly shame japan a report by
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simply speaking the truth. they cannot bring themselves to do the job until the truth because their job requires them to navigate through a huge untenable conflict of interest. to maintain the relations with japan by the same time publicly calling them out. require the state department to do his job to mattel the truth, and apply the tools that has been given in the goldman act based on the truth. we import congress to require the state department to read his report and be honest how to reformers in japan by holding japan accountable and declare japan to be noncompliant. i want to conclude by offering a solution. we have seen the situation before with the state department and conduct surrounding international trade. the state department was found to drag its feet and
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so the early 60s the 60s the partner state was responsible for conducting us trade and investment policy and having reporting responsibilities. indeed they found the state department has an inherent conflict of interest in dealing strongly with training partners were not dealing fairly with us. the pres. us. the present created a new office, the office of the us trade representative. that was not enough. they continue to grow. quite perturbed with the state department's perceived interference with an important strategic partner. remember the 80s? i do. remember who remember the problematic country was? that's right, japan. what the congress do? the authority was further enhanced and of the omnibus trade and competitive act of 1988. 1988. section 1601 of the 1988 legislation codified and expanded the ustr responsibility. in in so doing the legislation reinforce the
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executive partnership for the conduct of us trade policy. the legislation required that the us have been a senior representative on anybody that the president establishes to advise on overall economic policies and they should be included in all summits. it is my firm opinion this is exactly what congress will need to do we expect for the executive branch develop the capacity to aggressively advocate for children. i have learned in my many years of international business that i get caught negotiation strategy only works if it's about in the room. as as the state to be simultaneously good and bad simply will not work. like the trades are the ustr, what we really need is a child abductions are outside the purview of the state department accountable directly to congress and the president. the us children's representative office as the
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senior representative on anybody that the president establishes to advise on child budget policies. this children rights czar should be included in all summits and international meetings and should have its own agenda that is not subject to the desires of any specific country desk. this office should be staffed not by people who pass the foreign service exam with degrees international relations and area studies but rather people with degrees and experience in child welfare child ecology command family law. through advocates for abducted and abused children and be measured by congress and the pres. on the progress in protecting our children internationally. i no we cannot get to such legislation and get it enacted overnight. that means to be the strategic direction. our children have to be as important to us as international trade considerations.
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they must supersede issues with foreign countries in the context of bilateral relations, should but at present don't. and this is causing an enormous amount of suffering needless suffering by the parents sitting before you hear the thousands of parents who are not in attendance today and the thousands of a better american children throughout the world. >> thank you so very much for your testimony and forth your tenacity. >> just to inform you, my testimony will be paraphrased. >> okay. >> just for the record my testimony will be paraphrased and i requested be i request to be submitted for the record. >> without objection every statement and additional material we will be made a
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part of the record. >> thank you. chairman thank you for committing your time today to address this issue of international parental child abduction and the augmentation of the goldman act henceforth referred to as i. i'm inspired by your continued rick concern for the pursuit of justice. the department of state my and the thousands of others who have been victimized be alone. many has been many has been years begging to be heard, properly represented for the sake of our children by our government. thank you for answering amply. in my family's case my children were illegally abducted by their father in november 2011. i have full have full custody of both children and retained a judicial order preventing either from traveling outside of the united states without a child. i relocated.
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the application of my custody right. court ruling upholding my right to custody in the united states. that was appealed and a letter obtained concurring judgment through both the tunisian appellate and supreme court upholding my right to custody about children declaring that the best interest we will be served by their return to the united states with our residents. despite these judicial degrees the tunisian government has refused to implement laws and rulings remain unenforced to this day. prior to the passing states office of children's issues the us consulate and ambassador susan jacobs' have been active. the support coupled with the avid representation in the
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fbi through legal attaché assure me that with the passing our case will be immediately result in a family would be reunited on us soil. that is not the case despite having every available tool at his disposal to secure the return of my but he remains illegally retained with his father. father. i firmly believe this is due to intentional resistance on behalf of states and the likely unpopular diplomatic and political consequences of its full enforcement. i defer to compliance reports. i am thankful that in testimony the state has provided an account of how many children have been represented. while the report makes consistent references to cases the route there is not one instance where an abducted child is counted. my question is simple.
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why wasn't a single trial accounted for in 2014 and how the central authority for the united states lose sight of the significance for every searching parent that it represents to have his or her child counted? after scrutinizing the 42 page report i have no clear understanding of how many cases occurred in the united states command many children are affected and know means of assessing whether the numbers of abductions have increased, decreased camorra make the same. a basic counting does not bring us any closer to an understanding of the breath of the client's. the compliance the compliance report is riddled with gross numerical manipulations. we are neither the unresolved case. aside from this the report
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explicates states disinterest in pursuing a stronger remedies required. it also clearly articulates policy of increasing the number to the convention as its major goal. this policy opposing the convention as a remedy has not been shown to affect a resolution command i believe the devastating repercussions provide strong evidence of that. it's a fair and powerful law that includes strong remedies' illegally obtained children abroad. had state applied in a remedies for through seven home with the family they. the policy and directive
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diplomatically contentious remedy for the return of her innocent american citizen speaks volumes. at this time my baby is a vulnerable united states citizen being denied his constitutional rights under tunisian law from international law, and us law and despite the extensive efforts of the various representative state my united states senators and representatives of the fbi, and legal counsel the government continues its opening pockets to the ever-increasing financial allotments the state provides the republic annually. clearly every american child illegally retained abroad state must redouble its efforts to account for every abducted child in its report and apply every actionable remedy provided for to ensure the return. as you well know there is so much more that can be said about this very important topic. i thank you.
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>> thank you. they will try to have an additional hearing in july. as a window. hopefully they will be significant. it's the hope they will revisit japan. japan absolutely has to be on the list. i would like to yield to the ranking member of the full committee. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to make a brief statement and then i think we are being called for votes. i want to thank you for scheduling today's hearing and thank you for your tireless advocacy through all the years we serve in congress together. i no of no one who fight harder than you for causes


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