tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN August 11, 2015 10:00am-12:01pm EDT
should be a war against terrorism at all? i think those are the questions are, the most important and most useful. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern and pacific on c-span's "q&a". >> next a discussion about pope francis ace upcoming visit to the united states. he will be in the u.s. from september 22nd through the 27th. he has events scheduled in washington d.c., new york city and philadelphia. including a meeting with president obama at the white house and an address to a joint session of congress and the u.n. general assembly in new york. . .
>> and with that i will turn it over to linda. >> thank you, sandy. we will move right into logistics. i'm going to in this helen osman, secretary of communications for the u.s. catholic conference of bishops, court in getting media coverage next month which, of course, is why we are all the. she's been with usccb since 2007 and has been a major player in bringing the church into the digital and social media age. in 2012 the catholic press association honored her with the st. francis award for personal achievement and we're happy to have her with us today.
>> thank you, linda. i appreciate evolving willing to work with me on getting started on time. i have some meetings that's mandatory for me answer of my colleagues to be at, at 10:00. i have a few slides, but i like to give more time for y'all to ask questions if that's okay with everyone. i thought i would go over very quickly, but of what's different from previous papal visit. i was in the same role in 2008 when pope benedict game. and worked with colleagues and still work with colleagues where at the conference for the previous visit of the pope. about credential accomplish become of the five centers and other resources that we're offering to journalists. 50,000 level view of the whole schedule for pope francis and then what specifically we're doing at the conference in reaching out to the general
public. level of interest is one aspect. we had a great deal of interest in 2008 but i don't like to use -- this is unprecedented. we close credentialing on friday. with over 7000 applications from individuals and probably about 600 outlets that are fast for space at the venues where pope francis will appear. he intends to speak quite often first in spanish, then alternate, having english translator available to you. people go back and forth so that will be something new for us. social media come in 2008 remember it was just beginning. we had long conversations over whether we would credential bloggers or not. not even bothering talking about that. yes, we are credentialing everybody.
again just the whole media landscape has changed dramatically over the past seven years, mobile devices, like streaming. the part i'd like to emphasize is the bottom line. when we started planning with the vatican which was back in january of this year, from the very beginning, every time i would ask a question are these events open to the media, the answer was yes, absolutely. yes, absolutely. we would like to see it available around the world. so we've been working with the networks on cool coverage alleys people coverage of every event. as i mentioned with close credentialing on friday. this is only for the venues for which the church as responsibility. that means we are not credentialing for the white house, congress and united nations. we are not credentialing for the white house, united nations or congress. but everything else.
we anticipate that we'll try to be engaging in conversations in social media both in spanish and in english. we've already asked folks to start using the hashtag #papaenusa. and again were working with the pool, but the people so that we can have simultaneous translation when he's speaking in either spanish or english for events again at this point we haven't dealt the details of reaching out to the white house or congress and in the view and is already planning simultaneous translation. we will have a filing center in the city and booktv those addresses in the next slide, and linda s. offer to distribute this to you also you have those, but at each of the filing center's we will have a live video feed from the tv pool. will have copies of the speeches. i fast we have those in english and spanish.
they are lrip the need to have them as soon as possible, at least on the day of. the holy father does take great personal interest in his text. i understand and often revises, sometimes revises extemporaneously as you speaking. just an alert to everyone on the. we will have any good desk, if folks want to interview other people. the holy father is not in any requests or individual interviews. if you are on the plane with him, and that is already been determined, the media got been given that privilege, and, of course, he doesn't do those on playing it is with a group of the only time where he will entertain interviews. but we will have a cadre of lots of other folks for you to talk with. also different of his trip from other trips by popes to the
u.s., everybody will have a briefing from father federico, a press officer. and we will be using the filing centers as a transport center to bring the media who have received assignments to the venue, received credentials for the venues, using it to bring you in on buses. to work with the secret service and other agencies so they get what you're supposed to be and make sure all those places get failed because extremely high demand for those. easy to remember, the ttc marriott marquis is, in washington and marriott downtown. new york and marriott marquis times square. philadelphia it's very up associate with the convention center, and actually the convention center hall is what we will be running a filing center. just think marriott and easy
remember on that. you will need a usccb secret service credential to go into the filing center. and let me run very quickly through, most of you probably are aware but he is coming in from cuba on tuesday evening september the second i believe and will have a briefing that they actually immediately after he arrived with father lombardi at the filing center. the next morning he goes to the white house. again white house credentials for the. immediately following that the ghost of st. matthew's cathedral and as midday prayer with the bishops. it's not a mass but it is official prayer of the church and people have some remarks of their in spanish. following that any afternoon we are over at the campus of catholic university of america and the basilica national shrine immaculate conception, and he
will celebrate mass they are. i think the number is about 22000 right now anticipated to be able to be there. he will also officially recognize -- saint. to be a mass of canonization. thursday visits congress. after that he will go over to saint patrick's in the city where there's at catholic charities center and meet with about 200 of the clients. folks to use catholic charity services began to speak in spanish with those individuals. out and give the jfk, both in york, still not done for the day. he visits his second saint patrick's of the day to st. patrick's cathedral for the archdiocese in new york where he will have evening prayer with
folks there. friday morning is over at the united nations. i can those are you in a credentials. after that he goes over to ground zero where he has two movements. he will meet with individuals who were affected immediately by the events of 9/11, family members, first responders, et cetera on the outside around the two pools and then he will go inside and will be an event being called a multi-religious event with a think about 700 faith, religious leaders. after that he goes up to east harlem to a school that serves immigrant families and another catholic charity centers. that evening he has mass at madison square garden. the next morning he gets up, goes to philadelphia, has mass at the cathedral with a faithful of philadelphia archdiocese.
he's greeted by seminarians at the seminary where he will be in residence those of today's. that afternoon he goes down to independence hall and will have an address on religious freedom. that afternoon he joined the festival of families which is a multi-event, celebration, music, presentation. he will be there for about 90 minutes but the actual festival i think it's about four hours on the benjamin franklin parkway in philadelphia. the next morning he needs at the seminary with the bishops who have been attending all week, a gathering for families in philadelphia. that also is part of the festival of families. goes from there over to -- sorry, i just linked on the main. prison in philadelphia. will meet with a group of 100
who are incarcerated there, most likely younger people. again will be speaking in spanish and english. and then large mass, huge mess, enormous mass on the benjamin franklin parkway. we may have up to 2 million people who want to participate in that, and he goes back out and wheels up. about 8:00 sunday night. then also just very quickly all a bit of what we are doing. the usccb is launching a mobile solution. i think i discredited in the app store for the august 15 called catholic church. we think. but we will be live streaming on that all the events. we want to encourage people to watch parties, i mean, i think i going including all legitimate
stories about people who we want to get here to see the pope francis and we recognize the intensity of interest. what we are encouraging parishes and schools and ics to do is think about watch parties locally. for those who can't during, virtual pilgrims if you want to call it the. our website u.s. papal visit.org is intended to also be a place where people can catch the live stream and other information. will have password quasi-password-protected section in debt for journalists, resources were developing right now actually. so again if you want to write anything uspapalvisit.org would be to go to cybermedia, and if you've got a just go questions for media, hope logistics at gmail.com is our preferred e-mail -- under the of mind which is fine but if you send to this one that needs t assessment to get lost in all the other
stuff that i have going on. so that's like this is a quick flight to. i want to ask finessing specific questions or anything else? yes. [inaudible] >> yes. which i to do is to go into uspapalvisit.org, scroll down on the bottom of the home page there's a link to the secret service website which is where you go to get the credential. [inaudible] >> we are hoping to get bishops, other experts. and again we are compiling all of that, so yes. those kinds of folks. yes, sir. did you have a -- okay, greg.
sorry. >> for the st. matthew's cathedral event, can you give us any sense of how much press will be allowed in there, or who else is going to be in there besides bishops? >> it will be very, it's not a large area as you probably know. added to know the full guest list but it will be limited access for media inside and we're working on risers on the outside as well but it will be limited. >> hi, good morning. is this the same one that -- [inaudible] so that's not longer an option. >> you can still get into the website if you -- >> for the filing center? >> yes, for the filing center but we close on a binge on friday. >> is it possible to get a credentials just for the filing center? >> yes. >> daily briefing will be webcast speak with yes. it will all be live stream.
>> but you know to watch it it would be password-protected? >> no, it will be public. it will be part of the pool feed. does that make sense? so we will feed the life briefings into what is provided through the u.s. tv pool. >> okay, will be life, okay. [inaudible] >> if we applied for a venue, when we get the secret service credential are doing it to do that separately? >> no. the secret service credential, you would use that to access the menu. >> okay, but if we have done that already, like applied for a venue, then do we also, ever want to go to the filing center, do we need a separate -- >> it all works, works across all three venues spinning so if
we applied already by the first deadline been -- >> you are good. can't guarantee you'll get into ben jawad but you have your credentials. they running those through background checks now. greg. >> thank you so much. >> thank you. >> and now i'm going to introduce william douglas. is a congressional correspondent for mcclatchy newspapers. he is reporting experience in nukes a schools, bill clinton's second presidential term, the iraq war. now he is covering congress, another kind of war, the presidential election for mcclatchy. bill has support for getting a good story from the pope visit on capital. >> thank you all for again. i look out and see something we face on capitol hill.
i can speak from the capital perspective of the pope's speech to congress. this will be very, very different. if i had to describe the significance or importance of his speech this is going to be like a had a state visit on steroids in terms of demand for media, in terms of demand for members of congress to actually be in the chamber for the pope's speech. congress, people can claim congress doesn't do a lot but i think last week they managed to vote, x. member of -- profit all the seats will be filled with members of the house and senate. they normally when heads of state visit even with prime minister netanyahu's speech a couple of month ago you had what they called filler. unit staff members were interned filling seats. i will not happen this time around. i doubt there will be a member
of congress who would not want to skip this. for our selfish purposes in terms of covering this, this is going to challenge for reporters who want to cover this speech. again going back to state of the union address or going back to a regular, hate is a normal head of state, but a regular head of state for lack of a better phrase. you know, we normally will go to the house and senate press galleries, say would like to be in the chamber at least be in the gallery to file. they're usually very, very accommodating. this timer is going to be more complicated because they perhaps accommodate not just us, asking the congressional everyday u.s. press but the foreign press. they will have to find a room for the pope's traveling press. so it's going to be very, very tight in the house press gallery which is already a tight space as it is now.
if you are not, well, if you're not a credentialed reporter to capitol hill, that is if you don't have a congressional hard past you will not be in the u.s. capitol that day. they're not going to our passes or the little stickers you can get. that's not going to work. even with the heart as there's no guarantee that you're going to get into the chamber. if it -- if you haven't made a request i would suggest you do so today. they still haven't gone had it going to do this but it's going to be very, very limited. as people who cover the hill know there's x number of seats in the press gallery inside the chamber and, of course, the wire services have their seats and some of the other sort of longtime capitol hill publications and those day-to-day present will more than likely did in. those who are occasional visitors to capitol hill even with the hard past there's a guarantee you'll get in.
that would be maybe some columnist who might visit from time to time. if you feel you're not a routine or regular visitor on capitol hill and you want to be in the chamber i would suggest you start either calling the galleries or come up with a plan be relatively fast because it's going to be very, very, very tight. the pope speaks at 10:00 promptly. so that means you have to be in the building early. advise you probably gone through the house and senate office buildings as opposed to try to get into the capital. because as you know when you go to the capital you've got to go through the security and there will be lines. it's best to go to the office buildings. i would say my general thumb, and i'm paranoid, or addresses i tend to get there an hour or two early just to get myself time to go through they could and get set up. i would advise you all to do that, maybe even a little bit
earlier. there's a nice captures in the building. you can bide your time but just to avoid the hassle because there is going to be hassled because they will be more security and security will be much, much more thorough probably down the are. they are thorough now. able to get up to another level when the book arrives. give yourself time to get there. bring what you need to bring. that will also help with security. don't bring any extraneous stuff. don't bring your gym bag. don't plan on working out after the speech. just bring your work stuff this hud will go much quicker. now for those folks who don't get in, speaker boehner has opened up the west front. to be a jumbotron outside. that is a ticketed event. citizens this count -- expect to get in and watch the speech on the jumbotron. i would suggest to citizens who
have decided to do that you may want to call your member of congress. i'm not quite sure how to take it even goes but i assume it might be like inauguration, and you just call your member of congress and see to get a ticket and try to get there. yes? [inaudible] >> i have no idea. i think they are still working through the. all i know is it's going to be limited. limited to what capacity is and limited companies and limited budgets of the sheer numbers that will be there. i don't have any intelligence on the exact number. just a bigot if you covered a state of being or covert a head of state speech and give them to the gallery, you know how long the road are and how many bench seats that are. just go based on that.
so that's pretty much the upshot of what all i know about getting in. if you have any questions, i can try to answer. >> i'm going to ask a question so hold off for a minute into the future a mic spent is there proceeding on the west front? >> don't know at this time. i think that are still working on that. >> other questions from the floor? i wonder, you mentioned, into the office buildings rather than directly through the capital. many of us are accustomed to walking this is office buildings with almost no security at all. they expect the secret service is going to be beefed up at those editors as well stick with top of the more capital please and secret service. we have heads of state, netanyahu's speaker at this inning, when the dalai lama comes, certain dignitaries dictated certain level of security. i'm sure this will dictate a very, very high level of security. to answer your question yes,
there will be much, much more security than you're used to seeing. >> imaging to find a workout, to bring a gym bag. what would you say are the essentials? what did you need to bring with you? >> if you're covering it, your laptop, notebook, recording devices, iphone either taking pictures off your phone. i would just bring the basics, the basic reporting tools you are required. if your tv or radio give more, but just pack your bags smartly just to get yourself through the security quickly. spin don't forget those extra batteries. if you are not able to get into the capital and you are not one of the lucky people with a ticket to the lawn view kosher standing outside, within, what would you say are your best tips for people are looking for maybe their lives in a speech on the
phone which permit will be possible and then looking for reaction speaks i think there's some fine reporting opportunities to do. if you are one of the reporters that wind up on the west front, watching on the jumbotron that means you automatic access to people to interview, which you have an advantage over the reporter was inside the chamber. because once the speech begins at once that speech ends, you're pretty much going to be where you are. you're pretty much stuck in place. your ability to get around. i like to joke when you cover the white house you are sort of a stuck pig because you can only go to the breeding area and maybe to one haul. in congress you're like a free range chicken where you can roam around the whole building. you won't have that luxury. if you're in chamber you're in the chamber. if you are in the press gallery you in the press gallery. if you're in the senate press gallery you are in the senate press gallery. if you're on the west front you are on the western front. if you have an idea of listening
to the speech and running around imaging your member of congress, not going to be that easy. >> so you don't think they will do anything with statuary hall? >> i've not heard anything. and i would, this is just me speculating. i would tend to doubt that just because of security. the previous speaker laid out the pontiff's agenda. if he does what we call otr, and off the record, decide to go and wants to visit statuary hall, you know, no. i think it would be difficult. i would guess if you want to talk to your member of congress i would cal call in advance of t something up by phone. that would probably be easier or if you can make a date somewhere, maybe 35, 40 minutes to an hour after the speech that might be good.
if you're looking for like an instant reaction i would like to call your member in advance and see if they can call you shortly after the speech. yes. >> for people to use it to have press credentials for capital on a regular basis, what would you say if you going to go to one place to see if you could get some sort of access what would be the best office to call to try to set that up? sounds like you have a lot of different ideas. which do you think is the first place to go, to be anywhere, i know not the press gallery but maybe the chamber or what you said. >> by all means call the press galleries to see if you get in, to see if you can get into the chamber. get into the press section with the chamber. you when i get on the chamber floor. if you are honed in on a member of congress or to again i would call that number to see where
they planted afterwards, just as you can even meet them personally or just talk to them over the phone. if you are compelled to be at the capitol, do you have a heart as? >> no, but some of my colleagues do. >> they can get in the building. once they get in the building, it will be a challenge. but again i would try to arrange as opposed to just go out there on a lark. >> if they just show up several are then subdivided chance that he could? >> there's a chance they could get into a press gallery. getting into the press gallery does not guarantee you, well, let me go over this two ways. the senate press gallery their cities assigned seating. mcletchie, we have desks there. some of you who are sitting here have desks there, and then there are open areas.
if yoif you can get there in tie that you can get one of the open areas by all means give it a shot. the house press gallery there is not assigned seating. so what happens when to have the speeches of heads of state and state of union people get there as early as they can, but the laptops down on the chairs, plugged it in and basically later claimed that space. there's going to be a race or that that day. again if you have a hard pass and you can get in there, i would get there early and get my laptop and my little sign that says here i am, don't move me please. >> how early? i know that -- i didn't even when i have gotten there at night everything is taken up. >> well, that tells you something. >> we are talking just a regular day on the hill spent i don't know what kind of going to open the calories. that's the key thing. as it gets closer you may want
to ask them when they plan to open it up. but i would say if you need to write from there i would get there as early as i possibly could. i didn't, if you get there too early there are cafeterias, work you can do because you have space to do it. but i would say check with account and see what kind of plan to open an an eye which is given there as early as humanly possible. >> have you covered, my understanding is they are going to be doing in addition to the congressional hard pass they're going to be doing their separate credentialing for the speech. that's what i've heard. i asked them about it and they said well, as the date approaches we will let you know. there's going to be a lot of demand from everyone so we are trying to accommodate as many people as possible, but i haven't heard back from them. >> i don't have information on the. i think what it might mean is i
can with the state of the union, they give us a ticket to go into the chamber. that may be what they are referring to. so i'm sure, it's still early on that in. i would say just keep in contact with the gallery and they will let you know. i think that's what they are referring to. >> bill, for reporters who don't, they'll all the time, who is the person they should contact and can you provide an e-mail address for that? >> i wish i were that study. i would call the house press gallery and i would call the senate press gallery big whoever answers the phone could provide information and give you the name of the person or persons that are the point people on this. >> you can get the house gallery director at
annie.pin@email@example.com. >> or call the capital and plug them into the gallery. that's another venue. >> other questions court clerk this is going to be very challenging event for reporters who want to get into into. william douglas, thank you so much. [applause] >> bill, i'm going to bring it back and get but may not going to ask if members of our next panel of speakers will start making their way to the front, looking at kalee, looking atcome and osha alter but anybody who easier -- i'm not sure anyone this year. i'm going to introduce the speakers by want to make clear that my introduction to a very brief, just a few sentences. i would encourage all of you to read the full introduction, the full bio that is in your pocket. if you're watching on c-span you
be able to find those files at our website which is national press.org. so this next panel is going to address some of these issues that the pope has really brought to the floor. some of the things that are clearly on his mind and i'm very, very pleased to have so many experts here to help us with them. i will start right here with doctor demetrios papademetriou. is distinguished senior fellow and president emeritus of the migration policy institute. mpi is a nonprofit independent research institutio institutions migration trends and the ethics. he is a leader in several international initiatives that aim to develop new approaches to the problems of migration, competitiveness and human capital development. we are very honored to have him with us this morning. lisa marsh ryerson is president
of the aarp foundation. she's been a leader in setting the direction of the foundation to combat poverty, hunger and other social issues for several years. we are very pleased to have her with us. and kalee kreider is special advisor for climate science at the united nations foundation. she briefly spent nearly seven years working as a researcher with former vice president al gore researching and helping to market several books and a, some of you may remember called an inconvenient truth. we are very pleased to have all of you, and i think, for this panel on going to hand off now to jason dick. jason is the capital editor of roll call to keep it is edited national journals, congress daily and before that he wrote for green wire. so thank you so much. >> thank you, linda.
appreciate you having me. it's an honor to be your. i think these panels can be very helpful in trying to sort of sort through what will it is a truly unique event. it sort of combines all the elements as bill was saying earlier of an inauguration, the state of the address, and i would add almost like a rock concert. the logistics on this our sort of a marvel to behold. but before we compare next panel will talk more about some of those logistics and how you cover. right now we want to belt out and zero in on some of the big issues, particularly issues this pope has made a part of his portfolio. they happen to be three of the most contentious, most debated, stickiest issues that capitol hill and the country have been
dealt with in the last, well, several decades, but they are certainly at the floor right now. demetrios, let's start with you. you are truly one of the world's foremost experts on immigration. and have been better watch it as capitol hill have struggled with this issue over the course of the last couple of decades and particularly in the last 10 years. they have gone back and forth, and now with the pope, he being in the vatican is quite literally at almost the foremost of some of the issues in europe edge of people trying to cross the mediterranean to get there. let's just start off a sort of a simple question like how does it change, you've been doing this for a long time, how does it change when all of a sudden the pope takes an interest in your
topic? >> good morning, everyone. thank you for the question. i think that when the pope speaks from a perspective that is both global and at the same time very moral, when he focuses on the dignity of the individual, when he focuses on the importance of families, of protecting children, he certainly gives voice in a very clear way to the kinds of issues that lots of people will want to hear the pope speaking, but i'm not what your whether the u.s. congress or at least those people in the u.s. congress who have been an enabler and unwilling to reach any agreement with regard to migration, that people influence them one way or another. so it is more likely to sway of
opinion than to sway people in the u.s. congress. this is my sense of this. the issue is very difficult because not only because everything seems to be opened up on capitol hill or in washington were generally, but because philosophically the two parties or at least two major wings of each of the two parties, fundamentally disagreeing on how to move forward on this issue. and i'm talking about philosophically, not only do they disagree politically on who should get credit or not credit for this, et cetera, et cetera. a broader concept of course is that washington cannot really move forward on his this issue but the more specific one is that the two parties have a fundamental philosophical disagreement about the size of migration, about what to do
about illegal immigration, about how to deal with challenges that the border, how much immigration should be in the country, how many people we should be bringing in. let's not forget the way we choose immigrants today was designed, let's see, 1965, 40 years ago, or 50 years ago? it was designed 50 years ago. with the exception of -- perhaps drive a 50 year old car without updating it. so we have fallen behind on immigration. both parties understand that. we'vwe have always had a prohibd advantage in terms of immigration. most people want to come in first and foremost for fairly obvious reasons, we can discuss them, and we're losing that advantage as you go is becoming more and more aggressive in terms of trying to attract immigrants that they want.
we are still the leader but again the advantage is to longer prohibited. but the pope is not going to be addressing those issues. the pope is on to focus on what the pope and the catholic church has always focused on. let's call it whatever, illegal migration. he will call it undocumented, unauthorized, unregulated. so his focus is going to be unregulated, let's say, migration, mass migration were generally. and anything that involves issues of protection refugees, temporarily per tech the people, et cetera, et cetera. this has been the focus of the church is concerned with migration. fundamentally the church and even this pope has two minds about migration. they argue for protection, he
argues for protection for saving lives, for treating people properly, for not taking advantage and exploiting people. he argues strongly against discrimination, et cetera, et cetera. but at the same time they are very conflicted and the pope feels very conflicted about migration were generally. often the church thinks of migration and speaks of migration as the lesser of two evils your the one people is staying home where, you know, one has no advantage in terms of development, no jobs, no opportunities, et cetera, et cetera. or one is persecuted versus the other one going to a receiving society that does not treat. again, not about all immigration. it's about immigration of the poor, integration of persecuted, immigration of the people who seemingly have no other choice but go elsewhere in order to create a life for themselves.
>> lisa, your organization at aarp foundation deals with sort of a wide variety of issues but foremost among them poverty, hunger issues, particularly as they affect the elderly but i was wondering, it's a little bit more diffuse, more amorphous than just the immigration proposals that congress is looking at. would you care to speak to that and how your organization, what are you looking for and how you're approaching this as an. >> thank you to my colleague because you're right, i think personal is great to be with all of you. as a come together and think about the truly important conversation with pope francis. as demetrios was saying i think what is extraordinarily helpful about the pope's visit is that he has, he speaks on many occasions, really on obligations about dignity for all people. so just that as you said that
giving a voice will be important terms of looking at platform. as jason said under president of aarp foundation, we are the affiliate arm and we focus on anti-poppy work in four areas, housing hunger, income and isolation. sing those areas are totally interrelated. in other words, if you think about a problem in one of the areas you can imagine and individuals also difficult in one of these other areas. it's this multiplier effect that can be a real spiraled downward for individuals. what's on my mind, jason and kalee and demetrios and colleagues about this visit, it's just been over 50 or so since president johnson declared war against poverty. and yet we see the poverty is on the rise rather than on the decline. so i think we come together at this moment in time to be able to put a spotlight on the issue,
and to also speak about some opportunities that have worked and lived those up. when we think about poverty and hunger at the core which has been a key issue that the pope has discussed and a real focal point for the work at aarp foundation, we know there are tens of millions of people in the united states who are in hunger every day. so hunger itself is you may think of it as the temperate or physical state of not having food but there's a real growing number of individuals, whether they be children under life people older americans, and that's who we focus on at the foundation, crossed a life spent the people who are food insecure it's a problem of is highlighted and that we can address. this is about the lack of reliable or dependable access to nutritious and affordable food. moreover, it's an opportunity for us to talk about the fact that there is no typical face of hunger in america.
as i said it's about children, young adults, adults and also seniors. that is about every address in our nation would you think is an important feature. certainly there is hunger in urban settings. hunger in rural settings but the fastest-growing factors for hunger in our nation is in the suburbs where individuals have possibly been pushed out of cities but do not have enough income to meet their basic needs. we do know that in america that are programs that have worked to reduce poverty and increased food security. so any highlighting of the great work of the supplemental nutrition act, snap, we know that for seniors the problem remains that they persistently do not apply for benefit for which they are eligible. so it's really just over one-third of seniors who are accessing, usually important benefits that our nation is supportive of. that could be about many things.
that's about lack of education that these benefits exist. it's also about older americans, and going back to dignity, and rethinking maybe there are others who are in more need than they are who might need those benefits. snap reduces poverty rates in the united states. so we bought individuals who are eligible to really enrolled in s.n.a.p. and have access to nutritious and affordable food but also because it's about little extra economic of them up out of poverty. we also know that the solution for hunger in america are across all sectors. it's my hope we can think about the fact that at aarp foundation is interesting with the pope visiting. effect is that we have found in addition to many organizations faith based communities are really important partners as we address issues of poverty for older americans. we also know it will take cross
collaboration from the private sector, a checkable sector, not-for-profit world as well as government to come up with new solutions. so that looks like having access to fresh fruits and vegetables in neighborhoods across our nation. it would be about putting together in the food supply chain with the work of not-for-profit so we were looking at how we can produce more nutritious, more affordable, more accessible food for children, for older americans as well. that is this question i think we all need to be asking, which is why are we not winning the war on poverty? when you think about hunger, how do we been that hard? it is, in fact, getting worse. why in a land of such abundance where we are producing food do we have such a persistent disconnect between the food supply chain and those who are hungry are food insecure in our
nation? so happy to take other questions but really see this as a great opportunity to let people know that there are so many americans who are hungry. we think about it, over 10 million older americans are hungry every day. i would say that's invisible to us at that this is an opportunity for us to le lift ts issue up into the sunlight or the spotlight, and hopefully encourage people to take more direct action to be biased toward action and solving these persistent problems of poverty. >> you are going to get to question. i just want to make sure we get everybody, a chance to have a little, have an opportunity to speak to the issue. kalee, your issue is at the forefront of the action in washington. the president is going to announce another climate change or global warming program, clean power plan. is already attracted a lot of criticism on capitol hill.
but as complicated and as contentious as global warming climate change is as a political issue, the pope has approached it from a new level and i was wondering from your vantage point, with your experience with the issue of how has that changed? what are you looking at? >> i would really encourage all of you to download onto your ipad all your smartphone -- the papal encyclical released in june by the pope in english it is praise to you my lord, one careful our common home. it is at 184 pages but there are shortages. the reason it has a historical section and six chapters. the reason i think you should read it is likely the pope will be speaking to me is here in the united states. it builds upon the work at least
four prior popes as well as st. francis and saint bonaventure. there's at least a 50 year history the of the catholic church addressing these issues from pope saint paul the 23rd, pope paul the sixth and even pope benedict. it's a very thoughtful piece, and i think, i know it's difficult sometimes for secular reporters sometimes to wrap their mind about a fake document, but it really hits on themes from the entire nature of creation, talking o of the relationship between god, nature and the earth and rock star between that is sin. but also dives into the themes of our throwaway culture, the need for a common plan. and that there are no technical solutions if we have lost our moral compass. i think you're going to see these things in his remarks.
but it is also important and what i believe brings it is bound together is that any -- the pope makes clear that poverty, climate change are not two different things are two different stovepipes. over the weekend the united nations adopted the new sustainable development goals which some of you may cover in your other part of your life, but they sustainable development goals build on the millennial debacles and deal with poverty, energy, oceans. and climate change but the pope sees this relationship between ourselves in nature as one. so as you try to think about and preview what the pope may talk about, he really has laid this out in any way. he would say that there is really isn't that different, if you look at how we treat people
who might be trafficked and endangered species that may be trafficked, that it comes from the same place. sal, all of us grew up in german catholic families like i did and feel that sense of guilt as i sit here and do my best to try to channel what it is that he tried to save far more eloquently than i, i really do think that it would be helpful because with all due respect to my colleagues in the environmental community i felt when the encyclical came out there was such an effort by everyone to hang their issue onto the encyclical. at what i saw was there but only a small slip of the encyclical billy got covered in the media and that there really is an opportunity to with his visit to take a much larger lens. focusing now on climate change. the pope does have an entire
section of the encyclical that really does look at approach and action. today is a big day. the president has an event in the rose garden this afternoon to announce -- announce the clean power plan. it is part of our u.s. domestic response to a larger treaty meeting that's happening at the end of the year. they will be a climate summit in paris that should lead to put some type of international agreement, over 180 nations will be gathering in paris at the end of the year. and so many people as they look at the pope's visit, really they see it as part of an art that starting right now with this large domestic announcement, military through the pope's visit and the general assembly meeting in the york and then carry through to paris at the end of the year with this large climate summit. speaking of interconnectedness, i think that as we look at the large international issues at the end of this year, as we look
back i think whether it's the pope or world leaders, they are going to say this year was the tipping point or not they some sort of three key pieces. first, did we actually link the agendas of poverty, climate change and finance? putting all these pieces together tried to make change. second, did the major countries, u.s. and china which did strike a deal last year, did the large countries actually start to take action on climate change? and third, i thought other speakers addressed this well, i agree that the popes influence will largely be on the broader public. my own family i think about taking a road trip from florida to come up to see the pope because this could be the only time to see the pope in the united states and excitement and enthusiasm in the catholic community is very difficult to convey just how excited people
are by this visit. but i think, and i say this and that had the fortune of working for former vice president gore. we look at capitol hill the public statements i think that members feel compelled to say and to the private sentiments that they hold. many of them as you know, they give privately, they donate their time, they go to africa. i actually think that beneath the surface you actually do see movement on some of these issues. i actually do think that it isn't like this does affect of these members personally. it affects their families. so what would be intriguing to the i think as we get out of the primary move towards a general election is whether not we do see a softening on some of the sort of flashpoint issues. because the primary isn't always the best time because that's when issues are sharpened. that's in both parties are playing more to the base.
it really won't be adding it to the genuflection that we will ask we start to see the impact i think of a visit like this. >> i would like to open it up to question because i know we have again a lot, there's a lot of interest, we have a slight of issues. but a lot of them are interconnected as we saw. who is first? >> i wonder how important is the popes science background to the development of his ideas? i know he's got degrees income is a chemistry? spent actually the vatican has held several conferences on science to help educate both the staff, and i think it's very interesting. and the encyclical he speaks to the importance of having a
dialogue with science. and i think there is a misperception sometimes born from a lengthy history, galileo and the rest of it, that the catholic church is somehow hostile towards the size. i think it's really an outdated perception. engagement with the scientific community has been very strong just on climate change. the encyclical also gives a talk to genetically modified organizations in a very new want an interesting way that talks about technology. so i'll say two things. first of all i think it isn't just this pope by the catholic church itself as historic engagement in science. this pope seems to be particularly interested and in the opening seven or eight pages he does walk through the history of the commentary in this space which i think is particularly
interesting. but he is particularly able to speak to some of us, to some of the science. some of the reporting in the u.s. even spoke to the fact that the encyclical addressed carbon credits. i think, so it wasn't just a science but he was able to speak to the rio convention, carbon credits, even particular policy initiatives that are out there in climate change and genetically modified organisms and elsewhere i will think you'll find a very interesting the level to which they have grasped an understanding of what's going on internationally and even domestically. >> i was wondering if any of you could comment about the significance of the popes visit to the correction facility in philadelphia and without my, i don't know, the broader issue he might be focusing on?
job-training program which is for either individuals who maybe have aged out of a foster care children and/or those who have been released from facilities. >> demetrios, you had smog -- -- you had something? >> as only some of you may know, this is an issue in the immigration arena. a federal judge about a week or two ago has ordered the release of all mothers and minor children that are being held in detention waiting for their cases to be heard and be assigned, you know, a full hearing at a later date. the detention particularly of unaccompanied minors, of children, has become a very large issue, and if this continues to be an issue in the next 30 days or so, i wouldn't be surprised if the pope were to address it. to bleakly, perhaps -- obliquely, perhaps, but this is
a pope who does not hesitate to enter difficult waters. he speaks frankly and forcefully about these issues. he has done so in the european parliament, he does so regularly in rome. his first visit, the first time that this pope left rome, he visit, you know, the place where all of these immigrants used to come. now they're coming in all sorts of different places in italy. and he has spoken directly about the issue of unaccompanied minors, how they cross the border, how we ought to treat them, etc., etc. so i wouldn't be surprised if he were to basically develop a narrative that will address these issues more directly than perhaps any other person, any other pope might have. >> right here. >> i sense that you all say that
congress is pretty set on these treaty positions. and that the pope may not be able to change much. but let me put a question to you, jason. do you sense any give in congress on any of these areas that might follow the pope's visit? >> i, i mean, i don't pretend to know, you know, the inner thoughts of, you know, or which way, you know, the speaker or the majority leader or minority leader is, but i will point out that the speaker is a catholic, the minority leader in the house is a catholic, nancy pelosi. and the -- they don't put religion into their policy positions, but i certainly would, i would say that, like, one of the most surprising political developments of the last 105 years that i've -- 10, 15 years that i've witnessed and identify been in washington
since 1998 is the rapid evolution on gay marriage to the point where politically it's almost not an issue any longer in congress. no member of congress really wants to really talk about it that much anymore because they see where the public is on it. and it is remarkable how quickly congress can change positions on things when they think that the public is getting ahead of them. and in terms of, like, where we see these three issues right now -- again, three of the thorniest issues, you know, congress has dealt with in the last, you know, couple of generations, immigration, climate change, poverty and income inequality -- we're discussing them, you know, in congress, but there isn't the impetus yet for members to go out on a limb to talk about these things. particularly with immigration, demetrios has trouble seen this a couple of times now where
congress gets very close, they may even vote in one chamber overwhelmingly, and then the moment, like, just gets away. and so there are so many variables about these issues that i think that it's, it will be interesting to see how congress approaches, what they -- if they issue policy statements as they're getting toward the end of the year as the election's starting, before the pope's visit and what they say afterward. >> hello. can you -- sorry. i know this is not related to any of the three issues you've come up with, but i'm really wondering since the pope is coming to the u.s. from cuba and he played a significant role in releasing alan gross in december and the policy change towards cuba, i'm wondering with all the different bills that are going around in congress to soften or even lift the embargo, do you see the pope bringing up the issue even if it's behind closed doors and not publicly?
how will his role in this engagement between the u.s. and cuba, you know, play in his visit here? thank you. >> go ahead, kalee. >> i wouldn't be -- first of all, i think the white house would likely welcome his engagement on this issue, and i absolutely wouldn't be surprised to see him address it in some form or another. and finally, i also think that there's more to come from the white house on cuba. i don't think they're done yet announcing joint initiatives there. and on foreign policy right now, i think two pieces, i think iran and cuba, are shaping up to be two of the major pieces of the president's legacy. and so i think anything from their perspective that raises that, the cuba piece will be welcomed by them. >> i think that that's a very
good question and a very good point you made. i think that we're focusing perhaps too much on exactly what the pope will say or not say and how directly or obliquely he may say it or not say it. during the days leading up to the pope's visit, during his visit and the days after the visit everybody else will try to use the aura, if you will, of the pope in order to make statements. so even if the pope does not say the words "cuba" directly, he will probably say something about, you know, sort of facilitating a dialogue and opening up with latin america. after all, let's not forget that this is a pope that understands, has lived all his life, has preached, became a cardinal in latin america. he has lived with these issues. and the president, if nobody else does that, the president will speak about the pope's
role, you know, in the opening toward cuba. so i think all of these issues are going to be put on the table directly or indirectly. >> i just want to add to that great point which is to say, i'll use an analogy. i don't know how many of you saw the film interstellar, long, complex movie, and someone asked me what it was about, and i said it was about love. that was actually what the film was about. and i think this the end what the pope -- in the end what the pope would say is this visit is about love. you can read the entire encyclical, and in the end, it's about interconnectedness and love between people and nature. that's very tough to cover as a reporter because you can't write a story about love and interconnectedness. we, by our very nature by being washington, want to cover all the political pieces. but, you know, whether it's cuba or something else, it will be
from his perspective on the interconnectedness and love and peace and joy. >> i think you're right. both of my colleagues, and i can't speak to your specific question, but it does go back to the earlier point about this being that unique moment in time to come together and think about issues broadly around common humanity and also shared accountability. when we look at these issues, in particular about lifting people out of poverty. so anything we can do to be sure that the facts are shared about the status and the can -- and the disparities across racial and ethnic lines and also providing information on solutions that might work. we all do better when even and every member, we know this, member of society does a bit better too. >> if i may, one thing that we do keep on coming back to is the pope's ideas about dignity, about the essential dignity of human beings.
and it's, it is difficult sometimes to convey that, i think, within a political system that is based on conflict. and i wonder, is -- do you have as policy people, do you have advice for other policy people, for reporters, for, you know, hike the lay-- like the layperson or observer, how do do you both address, this is a political event. he's a head of state, he's going to congress, he's going to the white house. how do you mix those? how do you, you know, make that transition from talking about the politics of it and, again, our conflict-driven political system to this other, you know, unfortunately, alien concept of dignity and love for other people? >> let me sort of take this on for a second. i think this pope is a globalist
in the most fundamental sense of the rule. we know that the catholic church thinks of itself and is, you know, a universal church. we all understand that. but this particular pope speaks very directly about globalization, and he speaks repeatedly about globalization. in italy, for instance, he spoke of the globalization of indifference, and he contrasted that with the globalization of charity and cooperation. so here is one of many, many instances, you know, where the pope wants us to sort of, wants to push against sort of the frames we think which we discuss policy issues and make them larger, you know? he speaks, he borrows language consistently from the universal declaration on human rights. he speaks clearly about the
obligation of the refugee convention. these are documents that have been around for 6, 0 65 -- 60, 65 years. these are documents that in the united states have rather restricted use, as it were, particularly universal declaration of human rights. but these are the kinds of things that he speaks very cleary about, and he -- clearly about, and he really expects his audiences, you know, since he has a captive audience every time he speaks, he expects people to actually engage. he wants to force people to engage those big issues from a far broader perspective that goes well beyond catholic teaching, as it were. >> i, you know, i would agree, and i'm not speaking from from a policy standpoint, but i think you're right. just the requirement of a conversation that is a global conversation that could be an opportunity for all of us is that one needs to know our own
place in that dialogue more solidliment so -- solidly. so the opportunity from my point of view to speak about, you know, where we are at with the issue of hunger and how persistent it and poverty are across all age groups becomes really important. it allows us to be a smarter participant, and is as you're saying, demetrios, this important global dialogue. because solving for hunger requires that we solve it here, we solve it not just for children, but also for older americans and that we solve this when we think about the interconnectedness of food chain around the world. so i think it's an opportunity. but it's also an opportunity for us to, in the face of our conversation about what doesn't work, to talk about programs, in fact, that are supported by the government that do work like the wic program and the s.n.a.p. program. when accessed fully, they are anti-poverty programs that, in fact, have worked over time and, in fact, bolster our sense that hunger is a public health issue,
because they highlight for us when we don't have adequate, accessible nutrition how difficult it is for young people and also older -- for young people to participate and be educated as fully as they need to be to be successful and for older americans without proper nutrition to become so ill with chronic diseases that they, too, no longer can live their best lives. and, of course, we're in an aging society where there will be many, many more older americans. the good news is we'll live longer, but if if you're in difficulty, that can be challenging news as well. so i do see this as a time to broaden our position in order to engage in the global conversation. >> i'll just add to that by saying that the pope as a globalist comes to the u.s. at a time when ratifying a treaty is a very difficult thing. we have two big issues right now before us, the iran package, we also have the asian trade deal and, of course, we have the
paris climate summit coming at the end of the year. but it's, as we all know, very difficult to muster 67 votes in the senate to give advice and consent to a treaty. at the same time, we have bretton woods institution aging, the u.n., the world bank and the rise of some counterinstitutions like the asian infrastructure bank and this sort of question about the u.s.' role in the world. and whether americans should continue to run these institutions and how these elections happen and, you know, whether -- how the chinese and indians want to play, and the fact that the indian population's going to be larger than that of china it looks like now ten years earlier than thought. so the pope comes in as a global leader, as an embodiment of some of that change that's happening. and in the u.s. we have a struggle right thousand between parochialism and globalism, right? we've had the reaction to the job losses from, you know, wto, nafta, you can argue about
whether or not they caused them or not, but there's certainly a perception in parts of the united states that it did. and the reaction against it. and so he comes in as someone who is, essentially, engaging us as a global player. we are a global leader. but we're having difficulty even renewing the ex-im bank. so i think that is a fundamental undercurrent and challenge as we look at this through a political frame to say, you know, how are we looking at all of these things, you know? we have imf, world bank, trade deals, international treaties that we are having difficulty even getting through our congress because we have this parochial versus global struggle. and so he is going to engage at this very broad level because the catholic church, right, all of the growth is in the global south. and the u.s. is, we are struggling with that as a country, right? you see the backlash and the struggle that we're having with our changes of multicultural
society, and when whites become a minority in this country. so he comes in at this fascinating cross-current and in the middle of an election to indirectly in some ways just, he is the embodiment of globalism. just -- he doesn't have to say it, he is by virtue of being there. and i think that in and of itself is going to have a sort of long-term undercurrent and ripple effect that are very difficult to see right now. but you can look at it through whatever lens of whatever beat you're covering to see how the struggle is playing itself out now on so many issues on capitol hill. not just ours, but others as well. >> let me add one point, if i might, while you're thinking of your next question. the timing of his visit may be unfortunate precisely of the reasons that kalee mentioned. in other words, we're going to be in the midst of a big argument about iran, we're going to have to pass budgets.
we know we won't, but nonetheless, you know -- [laughter] we will try to do something, a c.r. or whatever. so millions you folks -- unless you folks begin to write about the pope within the next week and keep frustrating your editors that you should have an article on this in each one of your outlets every day for whatever it is, next 30 or 40 days, it's entirely possible that the other issues that will simply be fueling the fires of arguments, of disagreements in washington will quickly make, you know, at least may not allowed the pope's message and all of his activities on immigration and on climate or on poverty and all that, may make it, you know, something that's disappear from the headlines within a day or two or three of
his visit in washington. now, in philadelphia the local papers and new york, don't forget he's going to be doing and talking about all of these issues in several places. this new york he will be meeting with migrants, immigrants, analysts. in philadelphia he will be dedicating the speech in independence square on immigration, and he will be meeting with latino families. so you folks will have an opportunity to keep writing about these things in order to create a crescendo effect, as it were. this way people can will pay more attention. but will his message be able to cut through the din of the arguments here in washington considering the other issues? i do not know. >> it's interesting, just as an aside, the question was asked about timing. the pope's visit is sort of the third and fourth week of the month, and s.n.a.p. benefits for
individuals and families tend to run out by the end of the third week in the month. so that's just an interesting -- it is -- he will be here during the week of each month that is the most challenging for food-insecure and/or hungry people. >> i'd like to ask each one of you to describe online resources where journalists can get data and statistics on your particular area of expertise. >> i can start. [laughter] literature sitting there on the front of the table, the immigration policy institute. people will tell you that is the legitimate and authoritative source of statistics and data and analysis on this issue. and this is not what we say, this is what others say. so we have a, an amazing, very interactive, very up-to-date web site where you can get everything that you need to get
on this particular issue. >> so in addition to downloading the encyclical which you can just google and just have it on your pad, i'd also recommend climate.gov which is the u.s. government's site. it's pretty good in general, and they also have photos and publicly-sourced materials that you can use without having to get a bunch of information. i'd also recommend, i brought this because i happened to get it in the mail, but national geographic has a cover about the pope francis visit which i thought was pretty informative. and then climate nexus, which ha ton of resources on climate change i think are really quite useful. >> yeah. and you can certainly go to aarp.org and aarpfoundation.org, and on both of those sites you can search, you'll find quite a
few studies at aarp foundation, we funded a number of studies i think that would be interesting around facts of poverty for older americans as well as a recent study on baby boomers and beyond, facing hunger after 50, which was a study by feeding america that we founded. by on our site you can find links to a number of important research reports on poverty and also on hunger more specifically. >> i might add, also, that with roll call, i mean, we definitely tend to focus on congress and more of the day-to-day policy and political fights. we have written about particularly some of the issues. we will definitely have our reporters on the climate change announcement today, and we've also focused on some of the issues that make up some of the side, these side things we've talked about a little bit; particularly the opening of the cuban embassy here in washington. several members of congress have said they, particularly in the senate, are going to do
everything they can to block the nomination, the confirmation of an ambassador to cuba. so, i mean, these issues are are, you know, they're things that we deal with at "roll call" a lot at rollcall.com and with our partners at cq.com. other questions? >> i wonder, will the pope's visit help to engage the u.s. catholic population which is an enormous population in some of these political issues? and for each of you, are there activists for your issues who are actively working to engage that population to try to extend the impact of the visit? >> any board? >> please. >> okay. very much so. there are probably around 75, 76 million catholics in the united
states today. about 48, 50, 52% of all the people who are here but have been born elsewhere, that includes both legally present, they include u.s. citizens but born outside of the country like myself, they include people who are legally here and are lawful, permanent residents, people with green cards. they also include about 26, 27, 28% of the total foreign-born population who are here illegally. altogether this is about 43, 44 million people. more than 50% of them are catholic. so the growth of immigration, both legal and illegal immigration -- has contributed significantly to the growth of the catholic population in the united states. the question is excellent at so many different points, so if you don't mind, i'll stay on this for another minute or so.
i, i don't presume -- [laughter] it was such a long time ago, i was the senior adviser to the catholic bishops on immigration about 30 years ago. '84-'85, '86-'87 perhaps. this was also one of the many periods of time we were trying to kill each other when it came to immigration. [laughter] we passed legislation at the end of 1986 that legalized people and created employer sanctions and did all sorts of different things. the one thing -- two things that i remember distinctly because i want to contrast them with where the catholic church in america is today. the most difficult thing that i had to do was persuade senior bishops, cardinals to actually go to congress and testify or to make any public statements or to puck up the telephone -- pick up the telephone and talk to powerful people.
they didn't want to touch that issue. the issue was too radioactive. so everything that we did at that time had -- and the second problem was the bureaucracy within the catholic conference, you know? there was at least as careful and reluctant to touch difficult issues as the senior people in the church were. contrast that with 30 years later where now you can get any cardinal to speak on the issue, to sign statements, to go up on the hill and testify, to go up on the hill and meet with leaders up on the hill. so this pope is coming to the united states at a point where the senior leadership of the church, bishops and above, are extremely active, extremely engaged and address these issues as a matter of course. with statements, with, you know,
testimony and with homilies in the churches at the local level. i expect that this will intensify in the days leading up to the pope's visit. and here we may have a significant, in a sense, comment tail, you know, two and three and four months after the pope's visit. catholics are engaged. the leadership is engaged. the big question is the question that, you know, we all opened up with, you know? will this make a difference? and i don't have a crystal ball today. it was too difficult. too big to carry. [laughter] >> two interesting pieces to your question. i think, first, i think when we talk about these issues as political, we tend to lump americans together as if they're a blob. and i think that's a mistake. on many of these issues, the silent generation and the baby
boomers actually see these issues differently than millennials. and so i would just urge us when we say these are political or contentious, i'd really urge us not to see 350 million people as the same, because they're not. we've already -- we see that on gay marriage, other issues, and we do on climate as well. so, for example, on climate science it's -- you look at an 80-year-old voter and a 25-year-old voter, and they are absolutely not the same. in the climate profile. so i would just start by saying that i think it's just, it's a real mistake to think that somehow an 80-year-old and a 20-year-old are the same on climate change, because they're not. young people have grown grown up with ap and environmental science. they didn't even have that when i was young, and i'm 44. i took ap biology, but
environmental science is now taught in school as an advanced placement class. so i would just start by saying i think it's easy to say these are political, but really they are perceived differently amongst generations, and i'd urge you to -- if you're covering them, to really dive into it. one of the reasons you're seeing the sea change politically is that there's a build-up of young people in political power, gen-x, kind of a tiny little generation, so we're trying to make a difference, but millennials are really the wave that's coming behind the boomers. the second thing i'll say is that, yes, i think you can easily look and see that the environmental community is doing a lot to organize. but by and large, their member profiles are coastal. most of their members are found on both coasts. i happened to be in a meeting the other day, they were talking about how many members a certain group had in the state of wyoming, and i think it was ten. so what you find is that there
tend to be, most of their members are in coastal areas. i honestly believe what was just said is the most important. catholics are geographically disbursed throughout the country. what the environmental community does is extremely important in organizing around something like this. in a way it's just different and smaller than what the catholic church can do in terms of this long comet's tail that was just described, because it reaches a whole different set of people and in an entirely different way. and i'll explain that by virtue of saying this: i was really touched when i read the encyclical because it talked about life. and, you know, many environmentalists when they read it, as you know, obviously, the church has a position on life that goes from, you know, conception throughout life and opposed the death penalty. and it touched me in a way that i was really surprised by as
someone who has, you know, been pro-choice all her life. and i really think that this pope and the church has a way of reaching people that is very, very different than what any single interest group or linked-up sort of interest groups can do. and so i do think that that organizing is extremely important, but it is, it is fundamentally different than what the catholic church does. i mean, the encyclical and these materials go out to every catholic school. you have church groups. it's just fundamentally different than what you and we understand advocacy groups are capable of doing in terms of reaching communities and children and people at all age group cans. and so i guess -- groups. and so i guess i would say that's what i would focus on, is that this is just different than
what we in washington understand to be as postcard campaigns and generating comments and robocalls to congress. it's not that. it's fundamentally different. >> yeah. i would only add a couple things. one is that, linda, to your question -- and i'll get to what we might specifically do. but i do believe that people across the nation care that 45 million americans live in poverty, that they care that 20% of those are children, that over 27% are african-american and that the poverty rate among hispanics is just over 23%. i also think you're raising this interesting point about, of course, the generations are different. but what we've seen at aarp foundation is that the intergenerational connections are really, really strong. and so anything we can do to bridge those dialogues, we have a program at the foundation called mentor up where young people across the nation ages 15 through college are taking on the challenge to help low income seniors, people who are 50 and
older. and we are growing these chapters in schools and colleges. and there is a keen interest which i think though there are differences, that, to me, is very hopeful. not only about the dialogue, but also about the actions, the intergenerational connection. it'll be interesting to see whether or not and how colleges and universities and schools take on this public dialogue, you know? beyond religion or catholics that you were asking about the, sort of set a platform, because schools are opening right in advance of this visit. and then at the foundation though we didn't connect it directly, it is important to us that the national day of service is just two weeks before the pope's visit. so on 9/11 aarp foundation is hosting a national day of service on the mall where we hope to have really the largest event on the mall for service. we'll be coming together with an intergenerational corps of
volunteers, about 6,000 volunteers, to pack and then deliver over 1.2 million meals to those who are hungry in this metro region; maryland, virginia and d.c. a high percentage of those being 50 and older. and it's an opportunity for us in advance of the visit to call to the forefront all of the issues that are faced for us, for older people who live in poverty. >> and this, if i may add, this generational or intergenerational kind of set of activities are extremely important. i recall, and this is in a sense motivated from jason's point that he was talking about, you know, what may or may not happen and how surprised i think we all were at the speed with which, you know, the issue about gay marriage and all that became a nonissue. i suspect, you know, ten years ago the conversation was about generational conflict.
>> right. >> you know, i don't believe i've seen this, you know, anywhere in newspapers or anything like that, you know, for a number of years now. you know? this issue seems to have crested, and now it's the intergenerational conversations. throughout campuses in american colleges, people get credit, people are volunteering to help very old people whether immigrants or not. >> right. >> negotiate life in their 70s and in their 80s. i mean, there are fantastic initiatives that are taking place from temple university all the way to the universities in california. and in the case of climate change, unlike immigration where analysts pretend that, you know, the economics are clear, the effects are clear, etc., and they're anything but clear, the science at least is clear when
it comes to, you know -- so you only have to overcome -- only, i don't mean to downplay. you only have to overcome sort of the politics and perhaps a bit of the economickings. so i wouldn't -- economics. so i wouldn't be surprised if three years from now, i don't know how much the pope may have contributed to it, we reach some sort of accommodation where we start taking steps that include legislative steps on both of these issues. on the issue of immigration, you know, i would be neither surprised -- [laughter] nor anything else if somehow people started to put together piecemeal pieces of legislation. but in order for that to happen -- and if, indeed, the pope's visit becomes a catalyst, perhaps even the catalyst on this -- i wouldn't be surprised to see it happen as long as there is trust, you know, between the democrats and the
republicans or the administration and the congress. that's what we're missing more than anything else on the issue of immigration, lack of trust. so for people who talk about small pieces of legislation this way we can build up to resolving some of these issues, those small pieces of legislation can only be allowed to pass by either party if they can trust the other party that they're going to keep their word as to what the next step will be. and that's a difficult issue this washington on immigration at this time. >> yes,s in back. >> a follow-up for demetrios. you said earlier the big question is will the pope's speech matter, and i think the closest parallel was in 2014 to the european parliament. did that speech move the needle in any discernible way? >> it certainly did, you know? we're not talking about outcomes now, we're talking about, you know, the european commission
truly engaged in the issue. now, there have been all sorts of outside forces, particularly people dying, particularly people dying in large numbers that have also contributed to this, but the european commission has made more progress in the past four months, since march, whatever, five or six months than it did in the last ten years on this issue. now, member states are extremely uneven. take the case of germany, you know? not particularly in washington, the parochialism and the sort of not caring about knowing what other countries are doing. the sense of germany when i give lectures is that, you know, these are the bad germans that don't like immigrants. well, germany took well over 200,000 a asylum applicants last year. it is prepared to take as much as 450,000 asylum seekers this
year. that's an amazing number. can you imagine what would happen -- all of them are uninvited, in a sense, either parachuting in or coming through all sorts of different ways into germany. you know, germ's about, you know, a quarter of the size of the united states. that would be equivalent to whatever, two million illegal immigrants in a single year, all of whom we would try to adjudicate the cases, etc., etc. it's a remarkable change. on the other hand, you have spain that and some of eastern european countries that are refuse to take any -- if they can help it. austria saying we're not going to adjudicate a single, a single, you know, asylum claim this year. hungary put in a border four meters high, 12, 13 feet with all sorts of concertina wire, you know? people are trying to put five-meter high. in other words, the european
member state responses are all over the place. but the european commission, with whatever authority it has -- and it's a questionable authority -- has been making progress, has been fairly consistent in trying to make, trying to figure out what to do about all of this. unfortunately, they are focusing on the short-term kinds of things, you know? what do you do when you encounter people in the mediterranean? the pope has spoken about the mediterranean not becoming a graveyard for would-be immigrants. so, you know, there is a sense that something is going on, but the tough issues which is how do you address not the root causes, how do you keep people protected, fed, creating opportunities for them, you know? learning, in other words, studying, etc., etc., in the places near where the major, four million people have left
syria. so what do you do about jordan and lebanon and turkey that have taken virtually all of those four million people? these are hard issues. the united states has to engage with europe on this. but we won't until europe puts some skin in the game. they have to do something. they have to really show that they want to do something and they have a plan. then they can ask us to participate in it. >> i can't help but think that you'll see some of these issues really play out on the campaign trail. i mean, we have the first republican presidential debate on thursday. the republican front runner, donald trump, has made a centerpiece of his campaign building a wall. i mean, which is, you know, i guess what you'd expect of a real estate developer to forward. [laughter] but these issues are going to, they're going to come up again
and again and particularly on immigration because, you know, some of the principal rivals for the republican nomination -- somebody like jeb bush who has said, stated over the course of his career that this is an issue that the country has to deal with in a mature manner. another front runner, marco rubio, is also -- he was one of the key players in immigration debates, you know, in 2007 in particular and recently, a couple years ago. so this issue whether all of the candidates want to deal wit or not, thish -- with it or not, the issue will come up, and it's a fascinating time that it's coming up about a month, month and a half out before the pope's visit. other questions? do you have anything for sort of, as a last thing that we didn't cover, you know, something about the topic, you know, like one last thing you'd like to leave our audience with?
>> human trafficking. this is the bete noire of the conversation. these are profiteers, they're syndicates. they're well organized but tame they're not large enough to be able to penetrate them and somehow take them apart. it's sort of like the communist cell or the marxist cells toward the end of the era of the soviet soviet union and what have you. small operations, ma and pa operations, you don't know who the next operation -- can operator is. make a ridiculous amount of money. and they incur none of the consequences of or illegal movement whether people die, get raped, trafficked, you know, get beat up, die, etc., etc. all of the costs have been
pushed back by a country, you know, when they get to europe, they get pushed back. all of the costs accrue to the individual. all of the fruits of this process accrue to the traffickers. so this is spoken repeated wily ask and clearly about -- repeatedly and clearly about trafficking, and he has signed particularly with other faith leaders -- i'm sorry, you'll have to look up who the faith leaders are -- an agreement that they will work together, faith leaders, to eliminate human trafficking by the year 2020. we know that these are not realistic kinds of things, but again, moral authority, shining the light on one of the ugliest parts of this unwanted mess, unregulated migration, is extremely important. and they have called it, he has called it repeatedly as a crime against humanity.
so don't be surprised if he speaks in the context of some of the unaccompanied minors trying to make it to the united states and what happens to them afterwards, if he also says something about the facilitators of this movement in human traffickers: then, you know, the other thing -- and here, if you will allow me just an observation for 30 seconds -- this pope has spoken clearly about the complicity of all of us in this illegal immigration game. by focusing on the fact that we benefit from the presence of illegal immigrants. and this is something, you know, that, you know, that the church and most polite conversations don't really include, you know, in -- when talking about illegal immigration. and he really has focused, has written eloquently.
there are lots if you just google it. i have a paragraph here, but i'm not going to read it for you. basically saying we all benefit from their labor. we just love exploiting them, taking advantage, you know, of their presence. we discriminate against them, etc., etc., but we bear some significant responsibility for what is going on when illegal immigrants make it and stay in our country. it's very significant. >> i wouldn't underestimate that pope francis took his name from st. francis of assisi. i think it really is such an interesting point about him as a person. the second is that this is a pope who doesn't see the bifurcation that many of us see between poverty and the environment. this is something that he comes to seeing both of these things as interwoven and interlinked.
the third thing i'll say is that this idea of the pope as a globalist, you know, in the encyclical he talks about the one-dimensionallist, technocratic paradigm which may describe d.c. in a nutshell. [laughter] and then finally, i'll say this: he talks quite a bit about the desert of the mind, and he had a comment in there about that we feel free as long as we have the supposed freedom to consume. so i'll leave it with this on my remarks, that when he talks about spiritual fulfillment, i think he feels that there's become a confusion in society and that each of us as individuals have a role to play in our community all the way up to the global. and that permeates all of the issues that we have spoken about today. and so when he talks about less
is more and humility and serene attentiveness and gratitude, you know, these are not things that are necessarily -- we don't necessarily look at these as traits in washington that are often common as we work in sort of a combative environment. but i think he's really hoping to bring here, to take us out of the sort of culture of relativism and really try to bring this ho-ho listic approach -- holistic approach across these issues to washington and appeal to a higher plane within us whether catholic or christian or a secularist to try to find a way to communicate about these things in a way that we can understand on a higher level. >> i agree, support what my colleagues have shared, and i do believe that the holistic approach is one that he'll emphasize. he really believes in looking at
anti-poverty work that we need whole person solutions. i'd wrap up by saying something else that's important to note, we've talked about many nations around the globe, that hunger in america is far worse than in any other western industrialized country. so that's important to note. and then i would wrap up by saying that on my mind, as always, this notion that americans, that seniors who are hungry in america are often too embarrassed to ask for the help that they need, to have the nutrition that they need to have productive and healthy lives. but imagine that in a land of our abundance that one in six americans across all ages is hungry each and every day. so i would say that the embarrassment is really shared. it belongs to all of us. >> kalee's excellent point about technocracy reminds me that the pope has also talked about technocracy and technology as a
destroyer of jobs and as at the root of unemployment. and then you see the link between that and people having no choice, the lesser of two evils, but try to immigrate in order to survive. so, you know, this is a whatever you call the pope, you know, the pontiff works all of these issues at many different levels and unifies them, you know? this is an intelligent person who's committed to the things that my colleagues have discussed and i have discussed, that he is willing to see the connections to go beyond sort of like the first order, you know, surface kinds of things and think second order and think about second order and third order relationships. this will be fascinating. i don't know how you put everything in a speech or a series of speeches, and i don't know how you analyze it, but i will be looking forward to reading some of the things that
he says. >> thank you very much. i feel like this has been a very -- i mean, we have truly been able to drill down in a way that, you know, we often don't get to just in the course of our daily lives. one thing which is, i think, will be a nice segway to talking to our next panel which is a panel of reporters and editors about some of these -- who cover some of these same topics is that washington tends to go to sleep in august. this is like our hibernation time, you know? congress leaves and different people go on vacation and so forth. it's got its own rhythm. but it's also a time that is ripe for deep, deeply-reported, well-thought-out stories about things like this. we -- i can't remember seeing thinking that has the sort of potential in terms of a policy or a cultural event in several
years in my time in washington. and it's a great opportunity. i mean, i know some of you, of the reporters here, and you've got people from pbs, from cox media, and we have washington reporters from allentown and pittsburgh. these topics, i mean, as you said, the catholic population is disbursed across the country. it's not just a bicoastal thing like a lot of the environmental groups, as kalee was saying. and they are hungry, your readers will be hungry for stories about this. and in august they'll actually have time to read them. [laughter] i think that's a good transition. thank you again. >> thank you, jason. >> demetrios, kalee, lisa, appreciate it. >> thank you. [applause]
knox. [inaudible conversations] >> switching out name plates -- >> as i was reminded, we are the best of reality television, c-span. [laughter] so i'm going to transition right into our next panel which is reporting on the pope. as i said right before we went to get cups of coffee and so forth, william douglas spoke a little earlier about some of the logistics on credentialing and covering the cope. he is the congressional
correspondent for mcclatchy newspapers, covered the clinton white house. he has, you know, now has the pleasure, i guess is not quite the word, but we'll use it anyway, on covering the presidential race as well as congress. so he is, would be intimately familiar with some of the conflict-driven discussions that we were discussing earlier. john fialka is the editor of climate wire. for years he was the climate change reporter, the environmental reporter at the "wall street journal." that's how i first saw his byline when i was a cub reporter at green wire. we had to know what john fialka was writing about in order to know what we were talking about too. [laughter] so it's a pleasure to meet him for the first time. and then donna leinwand-leger is the breaking news editor at "usa today," past president of the plus club, i believe i'm current on my dues -- [laughter] and has covered just about
everything you can imagine on a breaking news level for one of the world's widest-circulated newspapers, "usa today." and we're going to sort of dive right in to some of the same topics we were discussing, but from the perspective of how do we as journalists, how do journalists out there approach these issues, approach this, like, sort of singular event of pope francis coming and also what some of our readers might want to look at too. so why don't we start with you, donna. >> okay. well, i think with pope francis' visit, we're looking at an awful lot of firsts. you know, we have an address before congress, we have a very political encyclical that we'll be looking for reaction to. so there are so many things to do. there are stories that you could do on everything from pope souvenirs -- can -- i recall my grandfather bringing me pope soap on a rope from a previous
papal visit. so, you know, we're going to have everything from the kitschy to the incredibly serious stories on climate and economics. and we have a presidential election too, so there are going to be interesting stories to be done on how the pope's latest message, you know, kind of opposition to trickle-down economics and come other thing -- and some other things, jibes with some of the more conservative political candidates out there and the republican base. and the other thing that we shouldn't forget is also this is not just about catholics, this is about -- this visit is going to have impact on other religious groups, on politics, and so we shouldn't forget to leave out, for example, the jewish relationship between -- with jewish leaders' rich with the pope to. -- relationship with the pope. and evangelical christians' relationship with the pope and how that might influence, you
know, religious thought. this is an incredibly popular pope who's been outspoken on so many issues. so i think we'll have, you know, kind of a lot of political, a lot of conflict stories to write. the other thing is that looking at his visit precisely, there are -- he's visiting places that touch on each and every one of his focus toes, his focal points. for example, a visit to a prison, a visit to catholic charities, and that will give lot of fodder for reporters. and then the last thing i'd like to raise is the pope's origin. he is, he spent most of his career in south america, and so there's a story to be done on the differences or perhaps the conflicts between the south american and the american, the north american catholic church as well. so just a bunch of story ideas
for you. >> john? >> when -- well, this is a pope who is a globalist and a moralist, and i think he's here to try to get us to think outside the box on those issues. and americans are very secure in our box, and we worry about our current politics and what donald trump is going to say tomorrow. and here's a man who's trying to focus us on something else. just as i left the office today, i read a report from somewhere in the middle east that said the temperature had almost set a world record. it was in the middle east, it's 1534 degrees. think about that -- 154 degrees. and this pope is going to talk about rights of the unborn. and a lot of you are catholics or christians, he's talking about abortion. no. he's talking about your
children, your grandchildren, your great grandchildren, people who haven't been born yet having a right to live in circumstances that support life in a world that's still safe. 154 degrees is not safe. there is especially among the developed countries, there is sort of -- and the pope has touched on this a lot, a streak of consumerism which says to some people why should i worry about the future? i really like to drive my suv today everywhere. this pope is here to tell you that the rights of people who haven't been born yet make them among the poorest and least defensible to people who don't think outside the box who are very comfortable in their box. now, thinking about that for a minute, we're from what is known among globalists as the developed world.
greenhouse gases caused up there in the atmosphere in the first place, the people who started the industrial revolution and who are still pushing it. it brought us a great deal of success. it separated us from these people who are suffering under 154 degrees. and is there a moral issue here? is there a justice issue here? do we as richest nations of the world have to lead the way and share some of our riches and some of our time to try to get the world back under control, to hit what the united nations would like to hit which is a target of two centigrades, no more than that? that's going to be very difficult. and so that's another part of the box that the pope would like to have you think about. ..