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tv   After Words  CSPAN  September 4, 2015 8:00pm-8:28pm EDT

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the press. grace coolidge, on c-span's series on first ladies. examining the public and private lives of women who filled the position of first lady and their influence on the presidency. from martha washington to michele obama. up tonight on poke booktv in prime time. books by presidential candidates. next our "after words" nrintervw with john kasich author of stand for something and bobby jindal's book at the reagan ranch. and then our interview with senator rand paul "government bullies: how everyday americans are being harassed, abused, and imprisoned by the feds." and rick perry discusses his book "fed up!: our fight to save
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america from washington." and now john kasich. he is interviewed by clinton administration and economic advisor gene spiraling. -- sperling. john kasich, former congressman and host of heart land on fox news says it is up to him to reset the moral comps of the country. he makes the case by drawing on examples from government, business, religion, sports, education, and poplar culture. john kasich is interviewed by the national economic advisor to president clint and senior fellow at the sfr center for american progress. >> john, i think we ought to start by letting the viewers know we have a little bit of a
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past. when you were the house budget committee chair person putting together the budget to fulfill the contract with america i was the economic guy at the white house who was assigned to knock down everything you said. not only that, john, we should let our viewers know you went to ohio state and i am from ann arbor, michigan scheand we have vicious rivals in that regard as well. but shockingly enough we turned out to work on the 1997 balance budget agreement and with our friend bono on debt relief in 2000. before i talk more about us, i want to raise the issue of b bipartisan. taking a stand and how it fits with bipartisan. what i want to do is ask you to tell a little bit about a story you have in chapter three of your book. it involves three names: john
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kasich, ron delams are black liberal member of congress from berkeley, and the current vice president, dick cheney. some people listening might be surprised to see who was on what side. tell that story and how it fits into your view of bipartisan and taking a stand. >> first of all, it is really a pleasure to be with you, gene, and just so our listeners know, i ran into gene on the airplane on the way to atlanta and getting off the plane we give each other a warm greeting and great hand shake. we have been on opposite sides and were together to reach a hist historic agreement to provide for the first balance budget since man walked on the moon and paid down the largest amount of debt in the history of america. it tells you you can fight with people on the other site and with different philosophy but it
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doesn't mean it has to be personal and you cannot find areas of agreement. what happened in washington is blatant partisanship and a fixation on being reelected. i was a republican and i am a republican but the party was my vehicle not my master and i think gene was the same way. the story with dick cheney gets to a very interesting debate. we teamed up together to limit the production of the b-2 stealth bomber. it wame about because ron and i were members of a dinner party who would meet every week, republicans and democrats, not a bunch, but eight or nine and sit around and get to know one another. i came to greatly ad miemire ro. i don't agree with him on everything but he stood for something. and i say in the book if you stand for something, as long as it isn't whacky, it is something
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to be respected and admired. i came to the conclusion we kid d didn't need the bombs beyond 20 and we were going to take the savings from not producing the bombs and have an effective fleet and take the savings from what would cost billons more and develop stand off weapons and keep pilots out of harm where they can shoot and be effective at the target. what is interesting is that is what we saw in the first iraq war and what we see all of the time. we were on target there. anyway, after about a 10-year fight. ron and i rallied republicans and democrats to support the limited production. we actually wanted 13. the administration ultimately came to us and said we could have 20. and i agreed with that compro p
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compromip. ron didn't like it. but i said 20 is fine. going from 132 to 20 was a victory and i think it was an astonishing victory to limit the major weapon system. something that had not been done in the 20th century before. they thought there should be 40 bo bombers. he sent a member of staff to visit and i said i don't know what we have to talk about it. i spent a long time reaching a deal of 20 and the secretary of defense is turning around break his commitment one year later. i said i don't appreciate that. that launched us into what has never been a good friendship. i think the vice president resented the fact i called him
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on it. but you make a deal and you have to stick to it unless the other side releases you. i was not happy about it. at the end of the day we did the best we could. the battle was one. we had an effective military as a result and at the end of the day you have to move on. >> john, i think a lot of people listening would almost be, it seems nostalgic. john kasich went with ron and formed that partnership deal honored their word to each other. people are not seeing that much now. i was curious when you said it was partly because you were at a regular dinner with him. there was a foerreign relation council report saying they thought one reason they thought there was less bipartisan was there was less interaxctions lie
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that. do you see that and other reasons for the decline of the bipartisan going on? >> i think it is part of it. i worked with nadir when i was there, and bill clinton, and i never sold my principles. i compromised but at the end of the day i stayed strong. i had a conversation with pat shroder and she passed it and some young republicans were saying how could you talk to that woman. and i said you are not here to be a republican. these people are not the enemy. and the same was true on the budget committee. i useed to tell my colleagues we will not be personal. we can fight all day long but not personal. and we have to figure out things they are roinight on and we havo win on. when people got personal with
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the other side i made a point to sit down and chastise them for doing it. that is not why we are there. we are there to change the world and fix the country. and so i think part of it is you don't have the social gathers. but i think bigger than that. i think the problem is the leadership right now is not mentoring new nebraska members of congress and being good role models for the fact you could have bipartisan efforts and the prosecutor side isn't the enemy. i remember the days of o'neill and things didn't get personal and at the end of the day two irishmen could sit down together and tell jokes. if we look at the problems of health care and lack of energy policy, if you are democrat or republican, if you think we can solve these problems without a
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concensus you are dead wrong. both parties have to define the problem and admit it exist. and once you can do that and you know it is imperative you fix it, both sides can sit down and compromise the solution. without that you will not get anything fixed in america. >> this is pretty tough when you go out alone. now, you know, bill clinton went out alone in 1993. they did deficit reduction. accomplished it but there was a high political price. you were out alone with a tough budget and you were punished to some degree as well. isn't part of the answer on these tough things you need a bit of political cover? what is the expression? you have to be able to hold hands and jump together? isn't that part of the rational for bipartisan on the tough
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issues? >> even beyond the budget, thing what it was like for the republicans to solve the major weapon system. you know what? look. do we need cover? maybe that is what people need. i never felt i needed cover. i will tell you why. i wanted to be reelected with the best of them. but re-election should be a by product of doing things. but i think it is even more important than the cover. what it is if we can agree, which we ultimately did, that we need to balance the budget for kids as a model and not have this out of control, once we agreed we need to do get it done and the rest were the details. we know we have critical problems with our health care
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system. you cannot get it done unless you sit down in a bipartisan way. you cannot rally the people to get it done. at some level, it is helpful to do it together from the standpoint of the political cost. i don't want people to think i am naive. i was there a long time and i got a lot done. i never looked for cover. i was thrilled to get other people to help me but you are only there for a short period of time. you ought to go in there and swing for the next -- fence. >> it seems to be one of the problems and both parties to do it to some extent are the pledges. i will never cut a social security benefit. i will never raise a tax. wouldn't it be good if we all got rid of these pledges? doesn't it limit the ability to sit down at a table and do
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comprom compromise? >> dheas that is a gaunood poin. i don't think there are that many pledges you have to sign but you know, that is a good point. i never thought about that before. it does limit the ability of people to be flexible. so i guess the warning would be sign the least amount of pledges because frankly when you sign a pledge i think you have to keep it. and that is really the bottom line. so maybe, you know, less amount of entanglements the better off you are. >> let me ask you about question, too. we could get in trouble with how we answer this. in 1993 and '94 we democrats controlled all arms of government. i was in the clinton administration. democrats controlled the house and senate. now we see the republicans have. now we see president bush really having a bit of troubles, lots
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of scandals and issues. is there a danger that unified government breeds a form of arrogance or people don't reach out? is there maybe something admirable about divided government? or is it just a matter of encouraging people to essentially pretend there is divided government even if you control everything? >> there is a growing sense in the country that divided government isn't so bad. i tell a story in the book about a lady who saw me the week before the election and was hyperventilating saying what happens if john kerry becomes president. and she said what would happen? and i said they will be okay. i said if he is elected, there is less money spent because the government would turn down a ba
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bunch of programs and i was right. the idea of divided government when parties start to lose their way i think it is a good thing. but if a party inherits a platform or program i would like to see them have all of the wheels to at least get it through. by and large, i think there are advantages to divided government. it forces people to work together more. and it does reduce the arrogance. you know, the thing that is the problem in anybody that gets elected to public office is there is a bubble that goes around them. i am not sure they listen all of that. and i am not telling you nam i am not guilty of it. i think we are all guilty of it. maybe in a way it keeps us on our toes and forces us to do thing do is reach out in ways we n may not always want to. i don't think gridlock is bad. i am not a big fan of the government but when the there are serious problems i think they have to get to it.
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i don't think what is going to happen with the major democratic gains and the possibility of picking up the house. the question is it there an undercurrent of dissatisfaction for a variety of reasons against the republicans. are the republicans able to reenergize their base and not by characterizing the democrats as an evil force but by standing up and being something? i think it is too early to know. >> six mopnths is a long time i politics. >> six days even. >> john, i will resort to one more story between us. it is relevant to the whole bipartisan issue. you and i in 1999 and 200o decided to work on something together. you want today get debt relief for poor countries. larry summers, bono and
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president clinton and others were doing it. we were stuck in 2000 # and we had lunch and i said we need to get everybody down to the white house with a unified force. and he said go call it. and i said no one will trust us you call it. you wrote us a letter saying mr. president, call everybody down. and i was getting people from the progressive side to come down. we got bono to fly in from dublin. and you called me saying great news. pat robertson is coming. and i thought that was great news, too. and went around and told everybody and sure enough there was blow back in the white house. not everybody was very happy about this. i went to president clinton and said, you know, kasich and i agreed do this and now people don't want me to invite him to the white house. and president clinton said to me well is he going to take our
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side and i said yeah. and he said why wouldn't anyone want to invite him to the white house? and i said that is all i need to know. and sure enough we had a remarkable meeting. that is my memory of the story. from your point of view ration that meeting probably, i think president clinton said it was the most diverse political meeting ever held in the cabinet of the white house. >> i always felt foreign aid was too much about corporate welfare and we were not getting out there doing the things we needed to do help people in other countries who could not help themselves to show the real face of the united states which is a beautiful and generous face. i was wondering around on this and i get a call from arnold who says meet this friend of mine. you have probably never heard of
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him. and i said what is his name? and he said bono. and i said arnold, i have his cd in my car. i was leery of celebrities. i am not big on working with them in the government. they don't really dig in or not enough of the time. bono comes in to washington and we sit down and talk and he blows me away. he is a man of deep faith and a man of action and knew what he was talking about. i organized a series of meetings on the hill and with one of the most incredible one being bono going in to meet jesse helmes, and the story is jesse's eyes wheled with tears and he said i wish i did in my life the things you are doing. and he explain today the coalition which was a great breakthrough and jesse helmes,
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chris dodd and pat and rick santorum and we put the coalition together. and the deal was i thought we needed pat robertson in a meeting like this and i knew pat cared about the issue. when i called him he said i haven't been in the white house since clinton was elected but maybe i should do it for this cause. i told if you cancel pat robertson i am not coming. and we had a great meeting, reached agreement on a number of issues which helped pass the first down payment on debt relief to help innocent people in africa. and the most amazing par was at the end of the meeting, up in the corner was bill clinton and pat robertson yapping it up.
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i said if you want to believe in miracles then take a look at that. as a result of that we have saved millions of lives in africa. i give the credit for bono. he has pushed for it. he is in my book as someone in the pop culture we believe believe in -- as opposed to paris hilton. you get a sex tape, fame and on the cover and you are great? come on. take a guy like bono who could be sitting around in the south of france having a good ole time but decided to take a platform and make a difference for people around the world. that is the kind of stuff we ought to admire. i think with you and with me, it was one of our greatest accomplishments to have been a part of that whole process. >> no doubt. for me it left me with the memory that the most unlikely partners can come together when you are willing to talk and look for common ground. i want to get back -- i am going
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to go back in our second session -- >> let me say i saw a film of chi kids dying in sudan and laying there doying with flies on them. how can we let this happen? we are creating a great evil without paying attention to the people. imagine your kid laying there dying and no one coming to help. the un is failing us. we have to keep beating the drum and pushing bono to make a difference. >> i couldn't agree. universal edge callinucatioguce with aids, giving people hope. i remember saying you have been terrific on debt relief.
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in 1995 you were focused on cutting the foreign budget and have you had a change of heart and you said the change that bothered you was you didn't want people in other parts of the world see a military plane flying and think that is america. you wanted them to see our heart. and you said debt relief was a way to show our heart. just going forward, how do you think people are perceiving america's heart? what would a president kasich do to kind of show the rest of the world what america is about? >> gene, you know, part of the problem is why up against an
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enormous brain washing going on in part of the world where kids have virtually no education. they don't have the capability to name a planet in the solar system and a big chunk don't believe we went to the moon and they have been told it was jews who brought down the twin towers. we up against a problem here with young people being educated that we are pure evil. and i think first of all, we have to demand from the responsible leaders in the country because some are people we have relations with including the saudi arabians who sent money to the schools where they teach this. we have to be tough in some respects. and back in '95 i feel the same wayism i am not opposed to foreign assistance just assistance going into the hands of corrupt dictators or big development projects that
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displace people and don't fix things. i think the model is in the peace core which is great because it gets in the trenches with people. how i admire the people that served in the peace core and could go and spend time. remember when the tsunami happened and we went over to asia to help people we reversed decades long of animosity not because we spent money but because we were there helping the people. i think we to change the nature of foreign assistance and make sure it is effective and shows our heart. and further more, as angry as i get at our european friends and allies who seem to have forgotten what we did for them for a hundred years and saving their hides. i was uncomfortable with the motion of freedom fries rather
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than french fries and i will tell you why. when you are big powerful guy, just -- country -- just like a powerful guy, if you don't make an object of listening and just want to yell and scream at people you will bow the looser in the end. we get frustrated when people don't think and thank us enough but as a friend told me john, don't leave objectivety. we have to do a better job of listening and every once in a while we have to give. we have to let them have a win because if you don't the rese resentment and anger builds. we know the security apparatus of the countries are critical and if they don't work with our security apparatus to prevent
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war on the values and this tear designed to destroy the western values we will have holes in our ability to protect ourselves. so i think it as a combination. get tough with some people, reform this foreign aid system, and i think at the same time do a little better listening and i will tell you one other thing we need to do, this united nations is not working. when george clooney looks at what is happening in the sudan and says the un can't declare genocide we need a different organization. we need an organization that has shared values and can attack what happened in sudan and also in iran with the great of nuclear weapons. we have to have common thinking by countries and not government that turns its back on the serious problems. >> with that i am going to talk a

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