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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  August 18, 2015 11:00am-1:01pm EDT

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and b, ask you to thank the panel in the usual manner. [applause] . .
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more than 1800 people died from the storm and flooding after more than a million people had to be evacuated. the death and destruction along the gulf coast from florida to texas although the situation in new orleans is remember the most. they should get underway shortly. live coverage here on c-span2. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] >> it's been 10 years since hurricane katrina slammed into the gulf coast. we will hear an update shortly from housing secretary julian castro and the housing and urban development recovery department. one of several programs on the anniversary of katrina. we will e-mail but a program next monday at an all-day form bean house did buy the atlantic. this'll be hosted by the atlantic with fema administrator craig fugate. looking at the disaster
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preparedness, how doors in particular has responded to to and recovered from the hurricane. the housing education environment race and neighborhood development situation in new orleans and more broadly in louisiana. that is coming up monday at 10:00 a.m. eastern over on c-span. just for your information, this morning more road to the white house coverage. scott walker shortly will unveil his health care plan coming up shortly live over on arkham pinion up where common c-span. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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>> we understand it should get underway shortly. housing secretary william castro and members of the housing development team will be talking about the recovery efforts in the gulf of mexico tenure since hurricane katrina, one of the deadliest in u.s. history. more than a million people evacuated 1800 people died as a result of the storm that hit the gulf coast affecting states from florida to texas. should start shortly here on c-span2. [inaudible conversations]
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>> good morning, everyone. [inaudible] we want to welcome a year ahead of the ten-year anniversary of hurricane katrina. today you will hear from secretary castro and several senior hud policy at yours who have worked tirelessly on the golf recovery from day one. before i turn it to secretary castro i want to let you know will take programs and transgressions in the program as well as viewers on the transfer webcast and c-span two encourage you to send your questions via twitter@@hudgov or hash tag --
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without further delay come and join me in welcoming hud secretary, julian castro. [applause] >> good morning. thank you very much for the introduction and let me just begin by thanking all the journalists who are here today at hud headquarters as well as those who might know her joining over the internet. in the coming days, americans will turn to you as we commemorate the tragedy that befell our nation a decade ago, a disaster so terrible that for all of us that will be remembered by simply one word, katrina. they will turn to her journalist to recount what so many endured and what none of us can forget. admit it devastating them yours, more than 1800 lives lost, more
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than a million americans displaced, a million homes destroyed across five states, $150 billion in economic damage, and they had all of those numbers americans will also look for answers. how much progress have we made in the years since katrina? particularly in new orleans which was the hardest hit community and what are we doing to continue supporting the housing and overall recovery in the effect of communities? today is about providing answers, but it's also about more than that. we are also reaffirming hud's commitment to the people of the goal to continue working with them and for them until the job of recovery is complete. you see, as long as there are
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people who want to come home and communities that need to be rebuilt, our job is not done. that is the true meaning of commemoration. not to simply market date on our calendars but to ensure that remembering also renders devotion to those we lost, dedication to support those who suffered and our resolve to see the promise of our nation made to new orleans into the golf fulfilled. 10 years ago i was proud to live in a community that stepped up to support evacuees in the earliest days of katrina. roughly 25,000 or 35,000 fleeing the storm's devastation came to san antonio and we were just one of many cities whose resume and opened their arms to families in
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need. across the nation, hud played an important role to displace families find housing and get back on their feet. they partnered with a public housing authorities to provide stable housing for nearly 37,000 families. in the gulf coast states, louisiana, mississippi, texas, alabama and florida, hud worked closely with disaster recovery leaders to support an ongoing recovery direct community block grant recovery initiative with the best of $20 billion to create new housing, develop new infrastructure and bolster the gulf coast region economy. nearly $14 billion of the funding has gone directly to support the housing market. hud has provided compensation
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for 158,000 affected households. it also helped 2900 families buy new homes and we've created almost 36,000 new units of affordable housing while rehabilitating another 13,000 housing units. hud was also central to the redevelopment of damage public housing throughout the goals, especially in what were known as new orleans big for. katrina displaced 3000 families living in those public housing buildings. today in 2015, four new attract dave, next income developments are a vital part of community life in new orleans and the new orleans housing authority, which once was beset by mismanagement and under receivership by hud
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has made an impressive turnaround and was returned to local control in 2014. as part of the work to support the region's broader economic recovery, her agency invested $1.6 billion to replace and improve streets come utilities, sewer lines, schools, half of those and dams. in new orleans alone, hud has helped build 84 new schools as well as 11 colleges and universities. our agency also help to open more than a dozen hospitals, clinics and other health care centers. we have helped rehabilitate 20 parks and more than 20 fisheries and completed dozens of water and sewer projects. i'm also proud to say that hud has played a role to help nearly
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5500 businesses, most of them small businesses to reopen doors. this morning you will hear from the men and women whose service was a chill as transfer support of families the goals. earl randall is our new orleans field office director and palestinian leader and right at the head of virus on to katrina. not only did oral and his team work around the clock, they did so while grappling with their own personal lives. they were among the storm's heroes and i want to personally thank earl for his excellent work in these last few years. he continues to represent the very best of our federal work force. or was joined by todd richardson, has associate deputy
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assistant, secretary and our office of policy development. i have to say todd knows more about these issues than just about anyone but even more importantly he cares deeply about getting the policy right for those who count on us. i know he and earl have put together a great presentation for you about the human aspect of this tragedy. following that committee will be joined on stage by three more colleagues. mary mcfadden serves as deputy assistant secretary for grant programs and hud's office of community development and oversees a number of programs that were instrumental in the katrina recovery effort. she's also done great work on the long-term hurricane sandy recovery so be sure to ask her a lot of good and tough questions.
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lynn barrasso is executive director and our fair housing and equal opportunity office of enforcement. then brings an incredible wealth of knowledge concerning how we are working to ensure that all families no matter their background, regardless of what they look like or how much family can make can take part in the gulf coast economic future. finally, they will be joined by milan ostend, deputy assistant secretary for public housing voucher programs. malan was central to our work to not only rebuild public housing but also helped turn around new orleans one struggling housing authority. i don't have to tell you that over the last decade the road to recovery but they are going to discuss has been long and it's been challenging, but i think you would agree with me that it has also shown that while the
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storm was tough, the spirit of the people of the gulf coast has been even tougher. their resilience continues to inspire us here at hud because as much as they've accomplished in the last decade, all of us are very aware that our job is not done. today the city of new orleans, for example, continues to grow. more than half of the city's neighborhoods have recovered 90% of their population from before katrina and 17 communities are larger than they were before the storm. there is still so much more work to be done. i am proud to say we work with local leaders to build a stronger new orleans and the gulf coast that all can be proud of for future generations.
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and as we marked 10 years, our work continues. we will keep working hard every day until the gulf coast comes back as complete. thank you. with that, i would like to turn things over. [applause] >> thank you, mr. secretary. we are going to take a brief pause to prepare for the next part of the program and we will be right back. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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>> next-paragraph two welcome programs outcome of field office director anton richardson associate deputy assistant secretary in the office of public development. earl not only responded to the crisis, he has lived there and it's taught as one of our data experts that when hud works on something it's not just the output of dollars, it is the impact your dollars make and has vast knowledge about our work on the ground. i will turn it over to them. [applause] >> dustbowl of the 1930s, great chicago fire of 1871, galveston hurricane of 1900 community has six san francisco earthquake. these are catastrophic event ended many lives, change lives forever, transfer and places.
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katrina joins these disasters of the last century and our language about transformative event as a secretary noted in their damaged homes. tens of thousands of lives disrupted for many years. 1833 lives lost. our colleagues have seen i can tell you the story of response. hud story shared with federal, state and local agencies is about the recovery of the last 10 years for the families and places most impacted by the storm. as noted in the introduction i am todd richards and in my role after disaster is to find the data and make sense of it. >> i'm earl randall the third and i provide on the ground human perspective behind the data you present. >> the went to katrina caused damage over a very large part of the southern u.s. but the catastrophic damage were in
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louisiana and mississippi. although the storm was the same, disaster manifested itself differently. mississippi was a 20-foot storm surge crashing the houses along the oceanfront, pushing him up against a raised rim. >> in new orleans tens of thousands of homes as a neighbor called the floodwaters continue to rise until september 1st when the water level in the city of new orleans equaled that of late pontiff tran. >> the word most often is devastation. he met this lady say now is the portion where the levee breached and the floodwaters devastated all of the homes in its wake. over dozens of homes were completely washed up the foundation of people suffered a tremendous loss. >> the debris removal effort led
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by the corps of engineers was massive. he said the transfer stations for debris. >> as noted by the secretary, more than a million housing units were damaged across that dates. over 270,000 suffered major severe damage. >> you may have heard the statistic that 80% of the city of new orleans was under water. portions of biloxi also inundated with water due to the 28 and 30 for storm surge that approached. >> ardennes 1800 people lost their lives in a million displaced residents. we are now going to pay that for the destruction of katrina to the recovery. the points are made by the united states postal service. this slide from "the new york times" shows one year after katrina where folks had relocated to using the u.s. postal service.
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270,000 households in the area had file change of address forms of the u.s. postal service in one year later 200,000 were still having their mail forwarded. >> as a result of katrina, new orleans residents were spread across the country in the immediate aftermath of residents were placed in various modes of transportation and sent out to different parts of the country. what did this mean? this man lives are changed forever and stability had to become an essential factor in survival. the pre-katrina life of everyone affected was temporarily frozen on 829. on a personal note going back to the new orleans field office three months later i went to my desk. the calendar was that on the day we left. people with coffee mugs were in the same position and it was an eerie feeling walking back into an office scene at the way you left it three months prior.
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that was the symbol of what people's lives were. when you left, whether evacuated voluntarily or you are involuntarily rescued, your life was completely frozen at that moment in time. >> satellite is recovery tape? here's postal service is helpful because they tell us about active addresses. my friends at the data center in new orleans have been tracking month by month the address is taking the opposite. the count is now 90% of what it was before the storm. one year after he had 50%. two years after the storm 67% in three years 72% and gradually incrementally, each year until 90% at 10 years. the recovery however has been at a different pace for different neighborhoods.
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in lakeview it was that 85%, the bottom line here. in new orleans east, which had the most houses in fact did i than a neighborhood which is the top line here, the redline, 82% of addresses have returned. >> eastern neighborhoods in particular, lakeview and the whirling deist both share something in common. a higher rate of home ownership and that is what a tribute at 285% and 82% of those residents in those areas coming back. >> these two metal lines are the neighboring communities and the lower ninth and by water areas. the lower ninth bywater 72% of its pre-katrina addresses are returned in st. bernard parish at 63%. >> the lower ninth ward in st. bernard parish were pretty much the most devastated
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communities in the city of new orleans. they're inundated with significant amount of flood water. the rate of return has been much slower due to the lack of insurance as well as the mixture of the homeownership ratio and renters. there was a lower number of homeowners in those areas and a higher proportion of renters. >> the research supports the more severe the damage, the greater the compensation of damaged, the longer it takes to rebuild, the less likely to rebuild. if there is inadequate or no insurance, the recovery process is slowed down by years. we have a few aerial photos thanks to my colleague. this is a picture of the lower ninth board and in 2003 it had 95 homes. >> did notice that aerial shot
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in october 2014 and if you look at the previous side and saw the cluster of homes, that was a cultural aspect, my grandparents lived in the lower ninth ward. and they live right around the corner from each other. we had cousins and aunts in a commune setting that that was our way of life. now that all changed. all of those families that lived in the same type of environment and the lower ninth ward in lakeview, gentilly, all the neighborhoods affected by katrina and microsoft changed at that moment. things used to do on a daily basis you couldn't do any longer because of the change in dynamics. >> st. bernard parish that borders on the lower ninth board
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in the 2008 at 84 homes. >> the depiction in 2014 shows only 15 homes to that area. >> hud is a recovering of last resort. we only provide funding when there is a sense the existing mechanism, insurance, sba disaster loans, fema assistance, corps of engineers will not be enough for recovery. hud receives through mounds of development block grant recovery programs to fill those gaps. we had initial appropriation of $11.5 billion. clearly that was not enough followed by 5.2 billion a fine of $3 billion when they realized the recovery programs had more needs than anticipated. as the slideshows, private insurance played a big role. $41 billion in the $18 billion for homeowners.
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flood insurance played at april the 16th at 1 billion for 211,000 claims. philanthropy has been important recovery of 6.5 billion. tax credits have been part of the rebuilding and filling in those gaps at $20 million. this slide notes how much of the funds went to each state. the majority of the damage and resources went to louisiana followed by mississippi. >> is todd mentioned, the cdbg funds for the funds of last resort. on the ground those were the driving force in the recovery. it is with those funds that we were extremely flexible and cause the community to really take the design, to think how to meet the specific recovery needs. how do we address homeowners and
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renters. the necessary jobs or businesses shuttered due to disaster. cdbg dealing with housing, economic development and critical infrastructure. these funds were still had to adhere for several requirements that half of the fund used had to serve low income. they must file the civil rights and labor laws. one of the most challenging aspects is that it doesn't come with preset destruction. it's incumbent it gives them a template and economic development for recovery. to simplify a lot of these matters, they both have the
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conversation for homeowners. essentially provided substantial grants to homeowners to cover the gap in funding left by insurance and other resources. by accepting this substantial grants homeowners agreed to rebuild by a certain date but if homeowners chose not to rebuild, the homes would be to get over to this day. in louisiana alone 130,000 families received compensation. an average award of $69,224. 92% selected the option to rebuild were 8% chose to keep their homes to the state rather than rebuild it. >> again, how long does recovery tape? from its low point in july 2006 at 98,000 active addresses to the 179,000 active addresses today, the increase of 80,000 over the decade. most of these were like is
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supported in some form by the block grant or low income housing tax credit assistance provided. 42,000 stayed rebuild grants and approximately 15,000 affordable units have been developed in new orleans parish. as well as with a small rental referral program using cdbg funds. my read on the ark or recovery is the first bomb through july july 2007 was likely due to people who have insurance or adequate insurance are needed just enough of the funds to recover relatively quickly. the rebuild from your three to seven was the lowest in the struggle to manage construction and others still did not have enough resources. in 2011 we surveyed the property owners who had not rebuilt after that .. in the top two reasons
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for they did not have enough money to do the work or they weren't able to get a loan to get the work done. >> from the neighborhood standpoint at the speed of recovery although 11,000 of the 130,000 folks chose to sell their homes to the state the concentration of those they didn't choose to rebuild were heavily concentrated in st. bernard parish with 4300 units in the lower ninth ward with 1100 unit. that's why was it the lake of the recovery. with this abundance of property sold back to the states that left a void and from the pictures we saw the void that effectiveness communities. the brazilian said the individual that did choose to come back is evident by their willingness to come back but also combat under circumstances that things will be different. things will be different from the way they were and utilizing green initiatives to work on
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aspects and rainwater runoffs. and to a more palatable palette to rebuild and recover. >> to build him a little bit of, from our survey in 2011, we asked movers and those who chose to stay, we asked about the satisfaction they had with the current homes they were living in and those movers and those who chose to say at the same level of satisfaction. in 2011, those who have chosen to move for much more satisfied with their neighborhoods. 70% were satisfied with their neighborhood and those who remain in rebuild only 40% were very satisfied. >> as we look at the data point,
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when we talk about satisfaction of individuals that decide to come back and rebuild we have to delve into rebuild things like they used to be. as i stated before, things totally changed. the dynamics of a post-katrina new orleans was completely different. when you choose to rebuild, you choose to rebuild your plot in life. when you look to your left and you're right and your neighbor doesn't come back, that is a difference. that affects your psyche when it comes to rebuilding. if you want to the corner store that you frequent didn't reopen, that changes the mindset in your psyche to rebuild. when we come back in your church doesn't return or anyplace you socially frequent doesn't return, that dissent into your psyche every building.
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we can look at the data point in seeking individuals that chose to rebuild were less satisfied. they were less satisfied because the passion they approach rebuilding was totally different. they had to reshape how they wanted to rebuild and we live in what is called a new norm. >> let's shift gears a little bit here to another important topic. what happened to the pre-katrina runners by the storm. two years after still providing assistance to 40,000 families through temporary housing units in direct payments to landlords. over three quarters of the households and renters, none had been receiving housing assistance prior to katrina. fema asked hud to use its housing authorities commend the agency that administer public housing programs to take over rental assistance responsibility for families. the disaster housing assistance
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program has renamed it was funded by fema and work of the public housing authority. from august 2007 to november 2009, hud provided 36,000 households. 306 public housing authorities in 49 states participated and in addition to providing housing partners with case management assistance. the average income of participants was $18,500. the transition for some was fairly easy. for others it was quite difficult. this difficulty like to have other participants eventually to transition from the fema funded rental assist in to hud rental assist in predominately housing choice vouchers. in 2010, 55% of the participating families were receiving rental assistance. we looked at this for 2015.
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only 35% are still receiving rental assistance from hud. it has taken 10 years. other 13 million participants still receiving housing assistance, we can tell a story about where they are today and we can see today that of those 13,000 still receiving assistance, 38% are in orleans parish. 21% are in other parts of louisiana, 6% in mississippi, 22% in texas and 13% are in other states. >> just one note. a lot of times we miss the true story on what it really did for individuals that were previously assisted with public housing. they stepped up to the plate in assisted individuals that were in a system of public housing before the storm. individuals have lost everything
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didn't have a job to go to. they were able to lean on hud for assistance in the aftermath of katrina. so not only it took care of all the hud assisted individuals but also stepped up to take care of individuals that have no place to go. hud also worked with private and multifamily housing as well. if we look at the slides in alabama, all 225 impacted properties have been fully restored and mississippi 420 of the 422 impacted properties have been worse toward and in the louisiana 387 of the 407 properties have been fully restored. this leads us into a longer conversation about the journey taken over the last 10 years.
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the symbol of the journey has been the redevelopment of the big four public housing developments. cg b., c. w. cooper, st. bernard at the feet. 3000 units before katrina was demolished. 1500 unoccupied units was also demolished in the redevelopment. the redevelopment called upon experienced developers to come in and redevelop sites. funding sources ranged from $200 million investment goes on tax credits of $250 million. he missed $20 million in disaster recovery kicked an additional $150 million at a critical time in the nation's financial crisis to get a lot of development. >> part of the housing authority of new orleans had 7400 total public housing units. only 5146 were occupied to the
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3000 occupied units. families to return to new orleans have generally return and then house spirit of the 5146 original famous and public housing new orleans pre-katrina, we had data that shows in 2,153,303 are still living and housing assistance. 71% during orleans parish. 7% in other parts of louisiana, 13% in texas and 10% in another state. st. bernard parish before katrina. this is the new st. bernard parish called columbia park as a bio district today. >> these are mixed income developments of public housing in nonpublic housing units that include market units. residents of mixed income levels but with public and private funds include a mix of uses such
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as retail recreation, education technology attractively designed, will the screen building requirements. assessable unlovable units for aequirements. assessable unlovable units for all. we saw what was thereafter. just to put in perspective and place, st. bernard housing development was the largest in the city of new orleans but it was also one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the city of new orleans. prior to katrina and the st. bernard neighborhood there were 479 attempted felonies. one year after the development there were only two. we are not only changes the bricks and mortar but elevating the lifestyle, elevating the quality of life for families living in public housing.
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they went from one of the most notorious neighborhoods to one of the most desirable neighborhoods. if you vacate 10 years at the time of katrina and came back now, you would know where you were. if you hadn't been back. that's a testament to change and changing minds in redevelopment. >> is katrina would invest in redevelopment of the chase neighborhoods program. a picture of the transformation here. >> in 2005, a combined 9000 households lived in public housing are vouchers the voucher assistance. today, helping approximately 20,000 families as a result of the recovery act. >> we are hoping more families today in new orleans than we were 10 years ago.
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new orleans is a smaller city. it is growing but it's a smaller city. the 2000 population was 4,850,213,379,000. matcher area is also smaller. the matcher is 1.3 million. today it is 93% of that. 1.2 million. more than half of new orleans neighborhoods have recovered their june 2000 by population of 17 neighborhoods have more than june 2005. what about the next 10 years? how'd will work with new orleans and the mississippi gulf coast as we do with communities across the country to continue to focus on affordable housing. decent neighborhoods, ending homelessness. on the last point, one recent victory in new orleans reaching zero and an inveterate homes.
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>> just to add over the last 10 years i've been extremely proud to represent the agency on the ground in new orleans because it is my home. i was brenda morris in new orleans. my wife says i'll never leave new orleans. i'm proud to say hud stepped up to the plate. recovery of not only new orleans but the entire gulf coast and portfolio disaster affected communities we reach across the country are heavily dependent upon the resources provided. if you look at a community without the presence, you are looking a blank canvas because everything we touch as an agency hopes to sustain communities over the long haul. in the 10 years to come i'm proud to say the department is reevaluating and re-pledging commitment to moving forward with the gulf coast because it needed. we've done a lot of great things that we still have a lot of hard
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work to do and i'm glad hud has committed to doing the work. >> thank you for the time you took to hear that story. [applause] >> thank you, todd and earl. before we turn to the final part of the program, which is a question-and-answer, let me just to does the folks haven't spoken yet. for my left to the right is marrying mcfadden, deputy assistant secretary for grant programs. malan, deputy assistant secretary for public housing voucher programs and wind grosso, enforcement programs in the office of fair housing opportunity. for the assembled media, if you ask a question, go to the microphone for the tv audience we appreciate that. folks can still get questions via twitter @hudgov or hash tag
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katrina and via e-mail@hud public for questions at the microphone, with questions from pam fassler for national public radio and if we start with todd and anybody else can feel free to jump in and grab the microphone there. the question is has the public housing choices after katrina actually had the desired result of low-income families to mixed income neighborhoods and opportunity. it seems to shift people to other high poverty neighborhoods, some of which are less convenient than the public housing projects in new orleans. >> one thing about that is the statistic i gave about the former disaster housing assistance participate in the voucher program are not just one place. they've moved to lots of places. the voucher has given them the
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flexibility. that has changed where people can choose to live. it is hard to find housing in new orleans and other parts of the country. rents are high in many places limited choices about the neighborhoods you can live in. it's not a perfect story. many families are still in high poverty neighborhoods, but the voucher has given more choice than many families prior to katrina. >> does anybody else want to weigh in? okay, we'll go to rest them are from new jersey and we might die with mary ann on this one. anybody else feel free to jump in. a billion dollars unaccounted for in the road home program. has that shaped how hud interacts with the r. re: i'm program. his hud more involved in world making or more hands-on in general and do some measures result in a more efficient as lower distribution of grant
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funding. >> we absolutely learned the importance of being hands-on in the communities as soon as possible after a major disaster. when the obama administration came in, immediately set to work creating a long-term disaster recovery framework to make sure the entire federal government is there for communities. we work much more closely and in particular with louisiana post-disaster. we have absolutely been designing programs. in terms of the billion dollars i'm not sure exactly what that refers to but i assume it is a reference to an evaluation done by hud's office of the inspector general to prove to be about half a billion dollars provided for elevation for homeowners who didn't actually have enough funds to get their homes elevated. one of the things we learned in
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katrina is it is much more effective when the state or local government provide the disaster assistance is hands-on with homeowners than doing an actual homeowner rehabilitation program as opposed to funds and homeowners than letting them manage the recovery process on their own. >> the next question is how is this handy recovery progressing in comparison to where the gulf coast was at this point in 2083 years after the respective hurricane. >> so it's always difficult to compare disasters in looking at the statistics, hurricane sandeep damaged or destroyed 650,000 homes all up and down the eastern seaboard. 650,000 homes damaged or destroyed in louisiana alone said this can't compare them
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side-by-side. i would say the design in louisiana as giving money to homeowners allow them to push a lot of money into home understand that the two-year mark. but that doesn't mean the recovery is moving in a more quickly for that it did move more quickly than we are seen in sandy. each of our grantees is doing a real reconstruction program in managing the process in new york state and new jersey in particular are moving at a pretty good clip for families waiting to have their homes repaired it is never fast enough. >> along the same as the emily j-juliett newsday. are there any lessons that have improved how hud handles disbursement of money? >> we could go on all day about the many lessons we learned that that first one is to ensure and
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the rehab programs and not to manage their recovery because the funding because of the scale of the disaster has been so large and is proven to be too much to ask for homeowners at the contractors in dealing with the process. that is one of the most critical points for us. >> just to add to that, one of the most critical lessons learned is the lesson of preparation. katrina, gustav, the bp oil spill another disasters in louisiana have taught us to be prepared. it has taught grantees to share information that they wouldn't regularly share had not been for all of this event taking place before. it before. it has taught us as a department to reach out and encourage them to share across state lines, across boundaries.
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one of the jewels that came out of the recovery is you pretty much created a college of knowledge between texas, louisiana, mississippi, alabama and florida on how to recover for knowledge has been shared with her friends on the east coast of new jersey, new york state and new york city. the lessons we've learned is that critical last thing that you don't start from scratch when a disaster hits. you have resources to contact him appears you can tap into agencies in hud double step up to the plate and recover with you. >> i would add to the point at the federal government we learned to do that as well, to work better across the federal government. the president said of the rebuilding task for his a couple months to ensure we were coordinating on housing that aspects of the recovery particularly infrastructure work.
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we saw frustration about the pace of infrastructure projects because of the need to do permitting and coordinating across government. we want to make sure we have a forum for that which is proven effective that we did not have after katrina. >> we have a question from a webcast viewer, peter moscowitz a freelancer. his head tracking where evacuees live? >> so, largely no. we do know where folks live who are still receiving housing assistance. in the charts i provided in the presentation, the two numbers i gave for disaster housing assistance program and for what happened to the former residents of public housing, for those still receiving housing assistance we can be they've chosen to live in multiple
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places. the vast majority have returned to orleans parish and the disaster housing assistance program assisted were from other parts of louisiana or mississippi and many have chosen to stay in texas which received a lot of families and/or other states. a lot of families chose to go to other states. we do see folks have moved and we have seen new orleans is a smaller place. >> as they grab the next question i want to remind folks in the room we have three or four minutes left. if you want to go to the microphone, go for it. >> i am with fox business and my question -- [inaudible] more than 25,000 over income families are in public housing, some of those making hundreds of thousands of dollars that we've been talking about texas a
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little bit today and that was where it was in the top three of where this actually happened. i am wondering if you can talk to us about how the department would justify spending taxpayer money as all us that there will be changes made. >> your question is specifically over income families? >> yes, in public housing. >> it is important to note that the law allows for housing authorities to serve over income families have upon original admittance they were under the income limit and in fact, having over income families to some degree helps to diversify the incomes, the families living in public housing developments and in fact the programs we support in terms of redevelopment have that component piece to it in large measure trying to mix the
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incomes as well as they used to and create diverse neighborhood. so i think while there is some disagreement between the oig in the department about the benefits to having a diverse income group living in a particular development, we will continue to follow the law is following up with each recommendation and identify concerns as well. in 2014 the law to change to change a flat rent policy. so for those families living in public housing that perhaps her over income, the rates will go up in according to the law is no more than 35% in any of three successive years. the rents for those families will be paid to more fair housing rent than they currently are based on income.
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>> do we have any other questions? >> my name is robert garcia. two quick questions. first come is tied now better prepared for natural disasters after katrina and my follow up with the what is the biggest take away for hud from katrina? >> so i guess i'll start with that. i think we are better prepared. we continue to try to improve each year with the things we know we need to do better. i don't think we could say we are 100% fully prepared for another disaster on the scale of katrina. that was very, very significant. we did learn a lot from katrina and we are making improvements each year based on those less than so that we in fact could be more prepared for a big disaster. >> if you don't mind, i think
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one of the big takeaways for me is how we work with other federal partners and specifically for me it would seem that in taking over the rental assistance efforts. that was really critical. we just thrown a lot of a lot of statistics i did today. we knew that people and not just the folks who had to evacuate, but the folks that were there to help as part of the recovery. and so, we insisted as part of the process that there was strong case management. ..
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so for me that's the big takeaway. >> and thank you for the question. from a civil rights and equal opportunity perspective i think one of the biggest lessons we have learned is the importance after working closely with states in developing their plans and anticipating the, the implications and consequence of policies that might on their face seem neutral but can very
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adverse impactings, if you will on communities of color. i think we've to not, not focus strictly on the needs of homeowners to rebuild but also to focus on rental, the rebuilding of rental housing stock, particularly low-income rental housing stock. so that low-income renters that tend to be people of color more so than homeowners have an equal opportunity to return and we replenish the community as closely as we can to the way that it used to be for everybody. i think that is one thing that we have learned to do and learned to do very quickly and anticipate. >> just one note on that. another takeaway that we've learned as an agency is that there is no cookie cutter approach to disaster recovery. what may happen in louisiana on
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the gulf coast will be totally different than what happens on the east coast, on the west coast, with wildfires and other disasters. we know that now. so we're better able to address the needs of those community where they are and what they're dealing with. so it gives us a better approach to working with those communities right where they are at the time of disaster. >> in terms of our responsibility as stewards of the taxpayer dollar i think what we've learned from katrina and sandy as well as some of the 2008 disasters is that we have a role in encouraging communities to use federal dollars that we provide to them every year to insure their communities are more resilient and use our experiences around the country to educate communities what they can be doing with their own dollars as well. every time they're building they should think about the current risk and future risks that their communities face. >> we're just about out of time. if there is any final thoughts
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from our panel here and we'll wrap it up. all right. thanks, everybody, fortuning in and being here in person. [applause] [inaudible conversations].
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>> reminder, if you missed any of this discussion you can see all of it available at more programing related to katrina. mitch landrieu, the mayor of knew or learns speaking this afternoon at the national press club. look for that live at 1:00 p.m. eastern over on our come pan union network c-span. also "the atlantic" magazine will mark the 10th anniversary of hurricane katrina, hosting a day symposium with fema administrator craig fugate, and the mayor of new orleans will be there. we'll have coverage on disaster
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preparedness and neighborhood development and new orleans culture after the hurricane. we have a look at u.s. policy in the arctic. the u.s. recently became chair of the arctic council, an intergovernmental forum that consists of eight members, eight member countries. we'll have the discussion at heritage foundation beginning at 1:30 p.m. eastern. >> with the senate in its august break we'll feature booktv programing weeknights in prime time on c-span2 starting at 8:00 p.m. iron. for the weekend here are a few booktv special programs. saturday we're live from jackson, mississippi, for the inaugural mississippi book festival beginning at 11:30 a.m. eastern with discussions on harper lee, civil rights and the civil war. on saturday, september 5th, we're live from our nation's capitol for the 15th annual national book festival. followed on sunday with our live "in depth" program with former
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second lady and senior fellow at the american enterprise institute, lynne cheney. booktv, on c-span2, television for serious readers. >> now a discussion of democratic strategies to get people elected at the local level. network's nations hosted this on progressive movement losses in 2014 when republicans gain ad number of seats in state legislatures and seized governorships of several blue states. this discussion is about an hour. >> so that was a very fast few minutes. we're ready to go. thank you all for being here for this panel of new 50-state strategy, how we can reverse the decline of democrats and progressives in the states. i'm excited to see everyone here. excited to see a full room. i think this is one of the most important topics we could be talking about. equally important we're talking
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about it in a place where it needs to be discussed, right? a place like arizona. there are states like arizona all over the country where democrats could be doing more, could be doing better, progressives could be doing more, could be doing better but we're not. we've seen over the last five years democrats have lost over 900 seats in the state legislature, in state legislatures across america, nine hundred seats. we've gone from having democratic trifectas, where you have democratic above, democratic state senate, democratic statehouse. i think we only have five now. five states in the unions where democrats control all levers of state government. only five states in the union where we have any hope of driving anything remotely progressive. my state, washington state, is in fact, no longer a trifecta. the republicans control state senate. we saw them block minimum wage bills and paid sick leave. other states, voter i.d. laws. you know it well, better than i
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do. so this is a great opportunity for us here today to talk about why that happened. but i want it to be a short part of the conversation and then move quickly how we fix it, what do we do about it? that is really think ethos of netroots nation. we diagnose what's wrong and pivot immediately to fixing it. one of the reasons i'm real excited to have this discussion here. i want to introduce our panelists. the first one actually is a programing change. very excited to have assembly member, loretta gonzalez from california with us. unfortunately the california legislature is still in session. i got a call before the panel started, assemblyman gonzalez was not able to make it. loretta gonzalez, remember that same, assemblyman from san diego. she is amazing, rising progressive star. [applause] however, we have someone really fantastic to agreed to step up
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to join the panel. this is monica perez. i will let panelists introduce themselves. she is from arizona. ran for state legislature in arizona several years ago. she has a great experience about running, winning campaigns at state level. she currently works on electoral team for democracy for america, i, robert cruickshank also work. it is great to have a local from arizona up here on the panel. sitting next to her unequaled former state senator nina turner. yes, certainly. who ran a great race for secretary of state in ohio last year. unfortunately she is not the current secretary of state of ohio but i think she has a lot of great insights to talk about, how democrats can win especially crucial swing state like ohio. sitting next to her is eliseo juarez, newly minted executive
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director of progressive majority washington state. he is not only great friend of mine but great organizer. real passion of turning states blue, but everyone is able to participate in our democracy and make sure government works for all the people. he does great, great work in washington state. i'm glad he is able to join our panel. [applause] and last but and absolutely not least is michael sargeant, executive director of democratic legislative campaign committee. they do amazing and important work to hold and gain democratic seats in state legislatures. if we're going to fix what has happened last five years, the dlcc will be essential part of that. thank you for joining us. [applause] i'm planning not to do very much talking. we have an amazing panel up here. i want to just dive right into it. the first thing i want to ask, we'll start with monica here and go straight down, what happened? why is it that we went from
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having democrats, lots of democratic control in states 10 years ago, to where we are now where republicans are running riot in these states? what happened and why? >> hi, everybody. i would just like to say i think what happened, and i'm coming from the perspective of arizona, what happened here is we started focusing on congressional race, on sexy races. we started focusing on governor and above. we haven't even focused on secretary of state races. and i think we haven't put enough emphasis on school board candidates. i think school boards are a base for building great state legislators who in turn, five, 10 years, are new congresspeople. in 10 years could be governor. i think that is where we need to start. i think a lot of folks run for the state legislature not knowing what issue really motivates them. and so if it is immigration reform, actually fix that in congress. you could make a bigger impact there but you've got to start somewhere.
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you've got to figure out how your issues play into what you're running for. and i know that when i ran, it was 2004. it is a long time ago. the district is even redistricted now. it is old district 25. new district 14 in arizona. it was a chance for democrats to actually win back then but we weren't focused. the party folks were not focused on legislative races. it was presidential year. i thought it's a great year to run. there is lots of money. guess what? none of the money comes to us. none of the money comes to state legislative races. i was fortunate enough to have emily's list support. i see tory taylor over there. groups like emily's list, arizona list, came into my living room to help me come up with a plan. that is what dfa does. that is what i want to do. i want to do like emily's list and other progressive lists do for me. i want to do that for legislative races. i will plug from arizona, i will never forget my home state.
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thank you. [applause] >> robert, we're going on down the tracks? i have to agree with sister perez. you know the best way to build a house, you don't build a roof. i don't know if anybody now, this is coming from a woman who has never built a house but it is my understanding. [laughing] you don't have to be scientist to understand that climate change is real and you don't have to be architect to understand that the best way to build a house, you don't build the roof, you build the foundation. and so i do agree with sister perez when she talks about the fact that one of the reasons why we have lost, we have lost lots of ground, they being, folks who don't believe in equality and justice for all, who happen to be in the majority in terms of the republican party, when folks don't vote for their self-interest, that is starting to with that school board member, the township trustee, the mayor, city council folks,
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you don't build a roof. you build the foundation. locally elected people are the foundation. people who run for office in the state legislature, they are the foundation. the hands of time is being turned back in this country. the reversal of roe v. wade or chipping away of voting rights, all of the things that we care about is being, happening on the state level of government. so having a fantastic president, that is all well and good but we need, it takes team work to make the dream work. the quarterback is only as good as the person they can throw the ball to. that ball has to be thrown to progressive board members, progressive mayors, progressive statehouse members and state senators, winning back statewide offices in these states. i definitely speak from experience. i want, i got, robert, i have to thank dfa and jim dean and governor howard dean for making sure that candidates like me have a fighting chance, making that investment and rising up the base.
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all pass to a great nation go through the ballot box. one woman, one man, one vote. that is still vitally important. we can not lose sight of that. we have lost sight of that. just because the cameras flash on the presidential candidate, when all of the work, the things that happened to you and your children, us and our children happen on the local and state levels of government. way before any president has that kind of impact. so we have lost our way. but, my bod, we going to find it, robert. we going to find it. [applause] >> i hate to follow that. i'm fired up. i want to register. you know, i think the first thing, i'm speaking from a washington state perspective and for us it was not a candidate problem. what happened in years past was definitely a consultant problem. we, as a party and as progressive cede ad lot of soul of our values off to contractors
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who don't often adopt equity principles we talk about, racial justice principles we talk about. when we give them our money to run the candidates that we're working hard for, giving our blood, sweat and tears for, they are not actually talking the same language. telling candidates to speak to the middle. speak to the old american majority. not rising american majority. not populations who need to hear it most. not those waiting to be brought into the electoral process. i think also that, you know, with those contracts we need to look inward and need to examine how we spent that money on candidates, not just where candidates spent their money and allied organizations and activists. who we give our money to. are we spending that equitiably. if we're leaving out large sections of population and those people standing with us and those most effected on issues we're caring about we're not doing our job. we have to take that hard look inwards.
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>> thanks a lot. this is really, you know, interesting question. just five years ago, going into 2010 election democrats held 60 of the 98 partisan chambers. now we're at 30. i would say a big part of what happened, just, what happened in the 2010 election, with, national republican wave, that took down a lot of our legislatures. then we came back in 2012 and grabbed almost half of them back in one cycle. so we're in the process now, how do we build that back up? i think it's a matter of having both a short-term strategy and long-term strategy. that is going to take, making consistent investments into things like candidate recruitment, training, message development, sustainable, accountable field program. so we're actually building networks of support is and people who actually care about these issues and care about our
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candidates in the communities. and having the ability to work on these issues, you know, cycle to cycle. hope that they actually, we actually have a sustained program. now i will give you one really just small anecdote. last cycle we at dlcc, we invest in what we call grassroots victory program where we placed 311 field organizers across-country. specific districts. in one community, 10 or 11 folks. we felt like we really did make a it did recognize even though election results were where we wanted them to be. knocked on thousands of dollars. the last weekend we had 1.4 million contacts that allowed us to know real time where the trouble spots were, where we were struggling with turnout and where we're struggling with enthusiasm. one of the things we did last cycle, unlike some of the other committees we wanted to look at
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this long term, we made invests in ohio senate last cycle even though they weren't position to one majority in one cycle. we're putting 311 field organizers, ohio senate, worked with us, put together a really good plan and we wanted to fund a handful of field organizers that would be able to organize in the community. i think that is really critical. to have the funding, have a strong plan but have funding to fund it not just for 2016 but be able to follow through in '18 and '20. >> one thing i heard, the decline in part of how do you motivate voters. how do you get people out to the polls. i was just having lunch with a woman who ran for secretary of state in new mexico. she pointed out she lost a very narrow race in part because turnout fell by one one thousand. not from the presidential year from 2014. from 2010 to 2014 turnout dropped dramatically from the 2010 midterms to the 2014
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midterms. what do we think is behind that? why do we have struggle turning out people in years where there is not presidential candidate on the ballot? start with michael, to come this way. >> sure. i think there is a lot of different factors. i'm curious at some point to actually get some of your opinions as well. i think some of it is related to fact even what ej mentioned before, a lot of democratic candidates probably don't speak enough to the base. i think that there's an issue with that. when we look, take a look at a lot of republican advertising throughout a cycle, a lot of times we'll scratch our heads, saying why are they talking about such a fringe issue in our minds, our minds fringe issue, something that doesn't come up too high as very salient issue in a poll with persuadable voters. what they're often doing, trying to send out those messages to their own base to engage them so they vote. often quite frankly a lot of
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those messages are probably to, you know, to the worst of people sometimes, right? we look at it, just think that reasonable folks will not pay attention to it. that is what drives their base. and therefore, a larger amount of their base often comes out to vote in midterm elections than ours do. that sort past it. i also think it comes to just, you know, a larger effort that i think we as democrats and progressives need to do to emphasize the fact that local elections, state elections are critical. they really are important. i can't tell you how often i have with family friends and friends of my wife. they gravitate to politics. they hear what i do for living and talk about hillary and president obama and so on. that is their touch point. they're democrats. they don't necessarily know who their elected officials are. i think we really, all in this room have to work to try to change that. i think it takes all of us to be able to change the approach in our own communities.
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>> yeah. i just want to second that. i think focus on down ballot races is something that i wish we would as a movement spend more attention and money on because there is nothing more exciting to me than a water commission district. i don't know if you have those in your state. you know what's up. because it matters, right? if you know water, and you're in the west, you're going to have a career in front of you. if you don't know water and you're running for state legislative seat, then you have to come up to speed in two to three months before going in front of voters you will struggle. progressive majority, we maintain a farm team. in washington state we have about 380 people we work with over the course of years to get them ready to run. this year what we did, we said all right, everybody willing to step up for all these special purpose districts like water districts, like reclamation districts, school districts, to control in some cases hundreds of millions of dollars and often times don't have quorums because
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people don't run for them in our state or they have really convoluted process in our state. they have a special election on their own two months later. so of those 380 people that we work with, we had, we told every single one of them, you will run this year be in our program. you know what? 160 of them stepped up. 160 progressives who went through our vetting process are running and on the ballot in august. i think that is a game-changer. if we get our folks in these small districts, they are going to make substantial policy change, build their expertise and as they're moving forward. what happened in the past, the reason why this goes back to the original question, i don't think we've done the legwork to make sure we're valuing those just as much as we are for folks with state senate. >> amen, brother ej. when i think, think about last year. last year was the lowest voter turn out in our country in 70 years. now think about what was
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happening in the united states of america 70 years ago. we were little busy in a war, called a war, war. 70 years. people are opting out because they do not believe that folk who is hold the elected space really give about them. i'm going to keep it pg. so i mean, 70 years. that is pretty sad. for me running for secretary of state in the great state of ohio, one woman, one man, one vote. the vote is the greatest equalizer. how hard it was for me to try to even get traction because i wasn't running for governor. everybody knows the most important race is the secretary of state's race because if people, i'm not just saying that because a sister was running because, if people can't vote if they don't have access to the republic, if their voice can not be heard through the power of their vote, then you can't vote for president or township trustee person or school board member or mayor or a governor.
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the ballot box is the most important. what i think happened last year, robert, i got to go quote my sister janet jackson. what have you done for me lately? and citizens in this country are not feeling as though those folks elected to office are really doing anything about their cares, their concerns, those of their children, their neighbors, what kind of future are people going to have. so we really have to start to talk to folks where they live. we talk about issues. people are trying to solve problems. if i don't have a job, that's problem. if i have to string together, three, four, five jobs just to make ends meet that is a problem. if my baby is not being educated, that is a problem. and so progressives and, we're real intellectual but i haven't met anybody gross out to vote because you're intellectual. they go out to vote you make them feel some type of way why you're running and what you will
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do to lift them. part of it is our messaging. speak to people's hearts. we can do that. titles are good but purpose is better. titles are good, purpose is better. we have a whole lot of folks running for office, they want fancy title. they're already angling for the next position instead of angling to make people's lives serving better there. is time out for that, i don't care what side of aisle, i come it is really come from the "mother jones" school of thought. and "mother jones" used to say i will pray the dead and fight like hell for a living. that is how a sister rolls at all times. i'm for the people. i like to think of those that had privilege to run for office or we're elected now we aspire to run, this is ministry. called the elected ministry. if you don't care about people, you ought not run. so one of the things for progressives, it is about heart-soul agreement we have that. we're right on all issues. how do we help to make sure that
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what we are right about on the issues permeate through people's heart so they come out to vote, number one and vote for their own self-interest? that is part of the problem. even folks who do vote, they're not voting for their self-interest. no such thing as off year election. every single election year is important. we are programmed in this country and in this society to only come out every four years. think about it, every four years. no, there is person or issue on the ballot every flipping year. we need to give as much firepower and energy to those elections every single year because we're building a house. then when we get to the roof in the presidential election we're building a house. then the next four years we get to the roof, we're building the house. that is every election year. i'm feeling this thing.
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>> what ej just felt. i should pass it back, like? keep it going. can we recruit this woman to run for anything? i mean, please, too late to get in the presidential? >> hey, don't start nothing. nina turner for president sounds kind of good. >> right? i'm not really joking here. one of the biggest things that got me to run is someone asked me to run. i think you have to take a real step back when you're recruiting women, recruiting people of color, you've got to ask them and you have to ask them at least 10 times. i was lucky that when i was working for howard dean's presidential campaign and then the campaign ended, his message was, he wanted his staff, his activists, his base to run for office. and i felt like governor dean was talking to me. it was like, monica, i want you to run for 'ffice. i'm staring at rosy lopez, i love her in arizona.
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rosie lopez, everybody. governor dean i felt like he was speaking to me, saying monica, i want you to run for office. i was organizing for him down in douglas where i'm from, cochise county, in arizona and i felt like he personally asked me to run. dfa groups there forming said we want to you run. there is an open seat in the legislature. i was 25 years old. always wanted to run, mind you. i'm one of those crazy people that said at 18, want to run for office. just don't know when, don't know where. that is the story of dfa, right? we got people to run for office but we asked them, we asked them and we pledged to give them support and help. so those folks who were my volunteers, as a field organizer, then became my volunteers as a candidate. that is the beauty of me working at dfa, sort of coming home for me because they're the folks that got me to run. they're the folks that told me, don't worry, that you haven't finished your degree.
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don't worry that you're 25 years ago. that you're single hispanic female with a strong catholic background. my mother is catholic, let me tell you. don't worry that planned parenthood and emily's listen doored you. it is okay. your mom will not retreat believe me. i got kicked out of my church when i got the endorsement from planned parenthood, it came out in my local paper. i got kicked out of my church. my mom got kicked out of our neighborhood church. but my mom stood up for me. i stood up for my values. fine, i will find a church that welcomes me. i'm still catholic. i'm a proud pro-choice catholic. we will find a place. we need to find a place for all the candidates. need to make sure we're asking people to run. make sure teachers, knews, community activists veterans are when they tell you they're not
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ready, they're red dip. you might not be ready now, there are 10 groups ready to help them. i want to help them. i want them to apply for endorsement of the we want to help them. people like nina turner to look up to. jeez, what more do you need? asking people to run. i think it is making sure we hold them accountable. if i ever went back on my promises in 2004, we were, it was pre-sb 1070. we had initiative on the ballot. rosie will remember, we had to show i.d. at ballot box. i was only democrat who spoke out against that i was running with two incumbents and 25-year-old young woman was only one speaking about it, because the party told me i shouldn't speak out. you should stay neutral. how the hell am i going to stay neutral when i'm from border town? my parents are immigrants. no way i stay neutral on that. i may have lost my race because of it, but i have my head held high, my integrity.
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we have to make sure to hold the folks accountable. if they're promising us a platform, if they're promising us progressive values, and once they get in, they close the door on us, guess what, that is what primaries primaries were made for. we have to do that. in arizona, we have to get a lot bert. i seen way too many folks running for legislature with their eye on congress. they get to congress and their home state might as well be washington, d.c. so we've got to get back to that we've got to get back to the days of this activism, where folks cared about people. you can't just run a campaign on debt mail and facebook ads. you have to knock on doors. i don't care if primaries are in august or hot in arizona or any w else. tough talk to the people. if you're not for the people you have no business running. >> amen.
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>> one of the things i'm hearing from the panel is, you know, the importance of like something people to do things, asking people to run, asking people for your vote. calling to mind, spring of 2014. in facebook discussion happened to be with one of the leading political consultants in washington state who works for democrats. someone posted a article are one of the key democratic demographics. i comment on it. this is great. i hope anyone running for state legislature in washington is reading this and plan to reach out to single young women and planning to reach out to people of color and reach out to poor people. consultant said, why would we do that? that is not smart campaign paining. they don't show up to vote in midterm elections. i wouldn't advise my candidate. people are four-by-four voters. focus on reliable voters s that a right strategy? is that wrong? if it is wrong, how do we fix
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it? if it is right how do we deal with that? start with monica here. >> as a single female, who ran as a single female, i will tell you i know i'm not targeted voter. i know because i vote in every election, every little bond election, everything, i'm not going to get those pieces of mail. i'm not getting that door knock. people will not remind me to vote, they will rely on, guess what, i'm voting anyway. like michael is mentioning we're forgetting to talk to our base. it is so wrong not to talk to single women voters about family issues. we care about them. we care about economic issues. about education issues. health care issues. they're the same issues. it doesn't matter if you're a non-traditional family, a family with no kids, grandparents taking care of kids. everyone has the same struggles. and we should, we shouldn't have direct messages just to single
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women, vote for hillary because she is woman and you want to see her, and although i worked for hillary and side note. but we want to make sure the messaging isn't just directed at you because you're a single woman. oh, you poor single woman. let me talk to you about things that might keep you busy at night if you're not on or something you might have talk to read issues a little bit longer than if you had kids. we all have the same struggles. i think it is so wrong for us -- called rising american electorate for a reason, right? i feel we've been talking for 10 years now. people of color, single, unmarried women. it is untapped group, i takenty you on issues they're 100% with us and we're not talking to them or we're not talking to them because they're some odd, mythical group of voters over here. we're not. i care about the same issues you care about, guaranteed.
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>> amen. single women got to eat. they have got to work. while i'm on, women want our whole dollars. we're over it. we want our whole dollars, whether we're single or married, we want our whole dollar. okay. now, steve phillips of power pac has a wonderful book coming out brown is the new white. brown is the new white. power pac. visit and support. and basically what mr. phillips is talking about is that in terms of the rising electorate that sister perez was talking about, that is black and brown and progressive white folks. we are the majority, point-blank. if we, my god if we put extra on ordinary, extraordinary things will begin to happen. we can no longer leave any sister or brother behind. robert, directly to you, any consultant, i can tell you i had consultants and people trying to
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advise, you're running into statewide candidate. y'all folks know about ohio, the great swing state of ohio. i never forget i had consultant say, now, senator, you happen to be black. [laughter]. i'm serious. it took everything i had to keep it together. you feeling me? i happened to be, and he went on and said listen, don't draw too much attention. [laughter]. i copy make this up -- couldn't make this up. don't draw too much attention to your ethnicity. i'm saying my name is not rachel. what is that sister's name, i can't, i'm a chocolate sister. i couldn't make this stuff up. so, you do have people, this person was a progressive and
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they meant well. another question i would get, senator, how are you doing down south? down south where? i'm not running in mississippi. i'm running in ohio but they want to know how the sister is doing down south in the rural parts of ohio. we, got to have mind-set change. progressives, tell you something, when you're in the room with folks that think that way, this was a good person. this was not a bad person. think about me. a woman of color. of african-american heritage, i don't happen to be, i was born that way. it was deliberate. you knee what i'm saying. it wasn't by accident. so i don't happen to be. i am. i'm saying all that to say that people of good consciousness, we are the majority. we can't leave anybody behind. in 2012, african-american women were the largest voting bloc in the united states of america. largest voting block. now you bring the mamas together, latina sisters, the asian sisters, native-american sisters, you name us, wherever
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we hail from, women make the world go round. so we can't leave anybody behind but women have this type of impact on their families, especially single. if you're a single mom in particular. you have this impact on society. when i say mom, i'm not just talking about it about the child in the world. when you have the spirit of a mama, scolds and protects, speaks truth to power. that is with we need more in this country. any consultant that advise you to leave any group of folks behind you have to leave them folks, you really do. i have shirley chisholm. i'm full of, i saw somebody tweet, i can't keep up with nina turner. but congresswoman shirley chisholm once said tremendous amounts of talent are lost to the society because that talent wear as skirt. that was true then, when she had the courage in 1972 to stand up i say will run for president of these united states of america no matter what folks have to say
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about my ethnicity and my gender. all of us, particularly woman we stand on shoulders of bold sister like that, when it wasn't popular. she said, i am running for the poor. i am running for children. i am running -- that is what we, that is what we need. so we can't leave anybody. we don't leave anybody behind, robert. >> absolutely. >> thank you. >> i love robert. >> a hell yeah to all of that. [applause] must have done something real bad in past life because i'm after her some times. you said a few things that really struck me, when we think about who is rung the world, it is women, people of color, people in this room but we're not running politics. we're not getting the contracts. we're not pushing back on people that are making the decisions to talk to people the way they are.
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telling candidates of color, you know, your last name looks a little too latino. make that smaller. go with your first name. so the yard signs say vicki or on your lit, consultants constructing very, very constructed views of you as hyper professional, buying into idea of respectability politics we're already navigating. the fact that i'm ed of largest recruitment candidate organization in washington state and can go days without a peer of color in the position. i'm a white presenting latino in very large state with huge latino, black, asian population i have zero peers that work in my industry. it doesn't have to be that way, right? it is that way because we're not asking harder questions. it is that way because we're not training ourselves to call people to call our own folks
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out. if they're air own folks they need to stand with us in that effort to make sure back of the house is looking like the front of the house. don't put us on the pamphlets or commercials. let us put the damn commercial together. >> shut up. [applause] i think part of this riley has -- really has to do with idea of winning rather than liberation. look how the people are voting. party is winning ds next to the ballot. we fill another mark and get another d in office. people vote they will look for them liberating their lives because they're in struggling. people have problems. they're voting for security. people need to know when they cast a vote it will protect their family. we're not doing a good job talking about that. part of the that is we don't have right people running these campaigns. one of the last things i will say is that, you know, this idea of voting for security, i guess
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what does that mean to you when i say that? this is a group of progress serves. you guys are not all normal people. you're showing up in that group, right? security to us looks very different from security to people that need to be elected most around this country n central washington we have a large latino population which is systematically being suppressed through election laws and ways that we elect people. it is mathematically impossible. took a federal voting rights case for them to change the way we elect people. first time in one city which never elected latina or latino which is majority person of color city they have nine people of color running in that city now. this is about making sure that we're changing the faces, changing the game at same time. >> all right. you know, don't know how to follow up some great comments outside of fact i mentioned before, i think it is really a
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theme throughout this entire discussion that we have to expand, you know, our base. we can't just continue to talk to a narrow band of folks and just expect to be able to change the entire debate without actually changing the debate ourselves and talking to people that we need to talk to win these elections. you know, we've been trying that for too long. and you know, we need to actually, you know, grow how many people are voting particularly in midterm elections. it is critical. the continued fight over same 30% of the electorate to get, you know, 51% of those same 30% of the electorate, it hasn't been winning mathematical problem for us. you know, two out of the last three elections. i think ultimately, when i hear about how narrowly we want to actually talk to people i think we actually have to talk to more people.
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we have to actually gear our communications, gear our field programs, to bring more people into the process. and to ask them to support us. you know, meet them where they are. talk about their issues and their problems but also from there, engage them, we want their help. we want them involved. it is not, not just same old clubhouse we may have had before. we need everybody to pitch in. we'll ask everybody to help. >> so there has been discussion about 2020 strategy, right? 2020 being the next census. the legislatures that are elected in 2020 are ones that draw next set of legislative districts, next set of congressional districts. there is a lot of discussion, do we aim for 2020 to try to take the state legislatures back. what does that strategy look like? what is it we need to be doing concretely, specifically, over the next three election cycles, 2016, 2018, 2020, to make sure
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by time next set of districting around we have bunch of democrats will draw fair districts instead of gerrymandered districts that make our lives difficult? >> i appreciate this question. one of the things that we at dlc work on is elect democrats across legislatures in the country. earlier this year we started a new super-pac, advantage 2020, which former congressman mark show irfrom michigan is directing, put together a comprehensive redistricting strategy for legislatures focused on 2020. but as i said earlier, what does that mean? what that means is having a short-term plan to be able to have success in 2016 because the elections coming up in 2015 and 2016 are critical. we can't wait until 2020 to actually, you know, do some good things for people and stop a lot of bad things actually happening
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to people as well in state capitols and local offices across the country, right? we have to have short-term plan to have some length. after that make consistent invests in key states in candidate recruitment, field message development, training, to build and be able to make gains in '16 and make gains in '18 and get there in '20. a lot of times people focus on what happened with the republicans drawing the maps in '10. it really put news a hole. some people may remember, the fact that the republicans drew maps in many of the critical states after the 2001 census. they drew the maps in ohio. they drew maps in michigan. they drew maps in wisconsin. they drew maps in pennsylvania. some other states as well, in those states democrats have majorities if not one at least two chambers going into the 2010 election. we had national wave election that pushed us out.
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you know, so, we can get to the majority by the indof the decade. these districts, that is one thing republicans are scared to death of. they know that the electorate is changing. they know that the conversation is changing. they know that they can hold off change for a little bit of time when they redistrict. by the end of that decade, you know, those districts in the state look a lot different than it did at beginning of decade. that is why we need to focus on having a program to address that. one thing we had this time, not last time, in fact 2020 will be presidential year. we do have the opportunity with both '11 and '20 to have higher turnout than we had in 2010. we can take advantage of that to win more of these seats. >> i think there is a political strategy and movement-building strategy. we need to push the party to be a little more open-minded
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around, i do mean the democratic party, around what it means to do work around the census. every person needs to be counted if we want these lines to be drawn fairly and every person gets a chance to vote that counts. in washington state, we had turnout, latino populations didn't want to be counted. took large investments folks typically not invested what the census could do for them, to invest in movement building door-to-door, contract, education getting people to build that out so it could do two things. one it could help build the case for voting rights violations happening in different parts of the state specifically in the yakima valley and everett which is north of seattle. it brought more people face-to-face with folks already invested in the political outcomes of their communities. so they were meeting people who would then intro them to what politics meant for them. it meant better sidewalks and street lights, right? bringing macro down to the micro
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so people see this affects everyday life. of a affects my commute, my children's school and my wages. the census is the first part of that. as politicos we look at census this thing that doesn't really impact us that much but super important. we need to get out of mind set to make sure our communities are counted. second thing is that many of our states have redistricting commissions. in washington those are appointed by our legislature. we had really, huge missed opportunity last time where our democratic speaker of the house didn't listen to communities of color, didn't listen to advocates that said we want somebody on the commission to make sure redistricting represents our interests and our values. instead chose somebody that actually did not represent that. in fact really hurt us in a number of ways. and we need to make sure he knows that. for those of you who have appointed redistricting commissions make sure you reach out to speakers of the house and senate majority leaders and tell
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them exactly how want on those commissions. often those decisions are made in back room somewhere but are not public. we need to make sure they're publicly vetted and people that we need to put into place. last thing, i'm a bit of broken record on this, special purpose districts, water districts, school boards, we can not cede the small ground because we will lose the war if we continue to not fill the positions with experts and qualified people especially those with barriers to making it on to the ballot in the first place. >> amen to what michael and ej had to say. there is african proverb one should never build their shield on the battlefield. well it is shield-building time. we have to have cycle by cycle plan. blue wave is coming. how do we wave from 2015 to 2016, to 2017, to 2018 to 20 to. those are things. in ohio with chairman david pepper we came up with initiative call, well, two.
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one is 16-18 plan. part of our 16-18 plan because we understand ohio, people will come in, we love you we love you, we love you ohio. when it comes to midterm election some folks don't even know we exist when it is time for midterm elections. they're like ohio who? we'll not let that happen to ohio, we bring it for the nation as we did twice, 2008 and 2012. we done it recent history we make sure we get love into 2018. that blue wave is coming. we have 16-18 plan. very much focused on local election. who is running for mayor and school board member and township for 2015. as we ready for 2016, do the same thing for 2017, for local elections n 2018 when all statewide offices are up again, we have a strong foundation to take back constitutional offices. we have to build our shield.
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part of the 16-18 plan is another initiative called the main street initiative. for the first time in the ohio democratic parties history chairman pepper and myself created an initiative where we raise money money for the main street initiative. those dollars go to candidates running on local levels of government. we show local candidates love they deserve. number one as democrats and progressives we still control a lot of local offices. that is number one. number two, that is how we build a strong bench people who can then run for state legislature, who can run for statewide office. who can run in the congress. we have to build it that way. so we have to take it cycle by cycle. progressives, if we have to eat a elephant at all, the best way to eat it is is one bite at a time. [applause] >> i love it. i will start with sort of what i would like to see happen in my
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home state of arizona. i will tell you i was gone for six years from arizona. when i left same people in power that were in power when i ran 2004 that didn't left me. went to nevada, washington d.c. someone told me your home state will appreciate you more when you come back. not so true, let me tell you. i have come back. i lived in nevada. i have seen great leaders built you up in nevada. i feel like nevada was what phoenix and arizona was like 10 years ago. we opened our doors. we really encouraged new leadership. came back in 2014, 2015, same people running stuff in arizona. it's a boy's club. i'm tired of it. i'm so tired of it. i want people like rosie lopez to always be involved, believe me. everyone can learn from someone like rosie and people that came
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before me. but i got to tell you in the state legislature i'm represented by three guys. i don't like that. i love that they're all hispanics. i hate that one of them is antichoice and he is a democrat. this is what we've got to be doing, folks. it is not easy, it is not pretty, we have be calling those folks out. part of our party platform is inclusion. equal rights for everyone. that includes our gay and lesbian friends, our veterans, women's reproductive rights. i don't consider you a democrat if you represent me and you're anti-choice. [applause] we've got to hold folks accountable. we have to make sure that labor is talking to environmental. that dfa is talking to labor. you know that we are working together. and these great tables and circles that we're building in the state, we've got to make sure that everyone's represented. i got to tell you, i even had a conversation with someone about,
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hey, i got to join this table in arizona. whoa, you know, i'm dfa. i'm local. i work national, state races. i'm local. let me put it out there. i want to elect good progressives in my home state. if i can't do it there i will sure as hell do it all over the country. we have to make sure in our state all of you are advocating for new leadership. rosie blaze ad path for people like me. everyone has a rosie lopez. i want rosie to stand up. if rosie doesn't mind. rosie lopez, ladies and gentlemen. [applause] if you're from arizona you know who i am talking about. and her granddaughter is my best friend. side note. in every state we have those activists who want to see their state. they want to retire and garden. rosie wants to garden. she wants people to take on the fight. but us as some of the younger generation, we've got to fight
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to be at that table. i got to tell you, i will fight to be on that table here in arizona. we've got to keep doing it. we've got to keep the people elected right now in office. if they're not fighting for us, we've got to get them out. [applause] >> because the panel is being live streamed we'll talk audience questions in a moment. have to do one more round through. we've been asked to have people who want to ask questions ask them at the mic in the middle of the aisle here. so after we do one more round of questions in the panel, it will be quick, we get to some audience questions. the questions i want to ask of the panel here, is, related to something that was discussed. you brought this up. i heard it discussed earlier here today as well. monica you mentioned sb 1070. we talked about some of the voter i.d. laws and redistricting how the republicans control that process. we can talk here, we shouldn't but we are, we as democrats and
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progressives can do to fix this problem but we also have to keep in mind republicans are actively trying to push back on us and make it a lot harder for to us do our jobs especially through voter suppression. what are some of the things we need to do, how do we untangle the chicken and egg problem, we need to have control of state legislatures to stop these nasty attacks on voting rights but in order to get control of state legislatures you have to win elections that are made more difficult through restrictions on voting right? how do we untangle that knot? starting with monica. >> i'm a firm believer it starts with the candidate. i come from the world where i was a candidate. i think it starts with candidates but it also starts with all of us. i think a lot of, you know, arizona got a lot of attention with sb 1070. we've been dealing with that for 15 years. it just wasn't as horrific as sb 1070. we haven't done a good job in states like arizona talking about voter suppression. we talk about it really well
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here in our own state, but we don't have sort of, we're not pushing our national leaders to talk about it. so we've got great people in congress. we've got to make sure that they're sharing our state stories out in the national media and making sure that folks know that is really happening. there are a lot of crappy things happening in our states. we've got to make sure that is coming out. . .


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