tv Public Affairs Events CSPAN November 23, 2016 9:40am-11:41am EST
brought by attention. i asked one of the school administrators and i said is this a problem? is this a significant problem that requires a federal mandate. you might not be surprised, if you live in the real world that this supervisor said it's not a problem of at all. this occasionally happens and we do something really revolutionary. we have the teachers and the parent and the student and the administrators also down and see if we can work out an accommodation that works for everyone and that's exactly what we've done. it is not a problem. it is a problem for 99.9% of the other parents who don't understand this when the federal government mandate something like that. regardless of that, we were successful. immigration as mentioned earlier, the president issued an order on november 14 to legalize millions of immigrants in this country. less than two weeks later there was a lawsuit challenging that action and in june, two years
later, they put an end to the president's effort. the last 1i will mention which is particularly relevant about justice scalia is the clean power plan which tremendously affects my state and others in this country. the epa issued their rule in august 2015. on that same day, 23 states filed a challenge to that ruling in federal court and on february 9 the supreme court said that the clean power plant rule, which is quite extraordinary, that was the last official vote of justice scalia. it was critically important. we owe so much to his legacy. my final hope, i will express that the congress the new administration will find a person who will fill the role he has played, his shoes, in the coming days, months and as they deliberate. we look forward to that and i will get back to where i started. regardless of who's the president or who is in congress,
we will continue to take our role seriously which is to uphold the constitution and the rule of law in this country. i appreciate this opportunity to be here and i look forward to your questions in our discussion. thank you. [applause] >> i too want to thank the federalist society for inviting me here. when dean reiter called me to see if i would be interested in speaking, he said he wanted some balance on the panel. balance, i thought well, you must've read my forward to the new cato supreme court review which was titled justice scalia 's original original as him, original or new deal? i think you knew where that went. i will bring a little balance. i hate to be the skunk at the
garden party, well actually i don't. [laughter] high loves and tone scalia. every time i ran into him we got into an argument. he loves to argue pretty just loved it. if you took one position, he would take the other. it was great fun to argue with him. for our subject here today which is federalism and protection, he was absolutely right that the structural protection for liberty are the main protections for liberty and he was correct also that the bill of rights was an afterthought as he often said. unfortunately, too often he ignored the changes the civil war amendments made to those protections because he too little regarded the theory that
placed democracy over liberty. that undergirding theory, the state nature theory can be seen in the preamble and the declaration and. [inaudible] scalia wouldn't go there. ever the positive, he dismissed it as operative. those tools are often insufficient when you get to broad or vague tax. at that point you have to have a theory of the matter, you have to know where you're going and what the presumption is. a judge can't simply throw up his arms and say let the people just decide and must the text
points that way. the constitution, after all, this constitution which a judge takes a duty duty to uphold, was written not simply to empower officials but to limit them as well toward liberty, not simply toward power as the preamble and the declaration make clear. the main principle is liberty. respect think the state of nature, the preamble begins by recognizing that sovereignty rests with the people. government doesn't give the people their rights, they create the government to secure their rights. toward that end, the framers structure powers and divided powers between the federal and the state government, leaving most of it to fate and they separated powers functionally at the federal level pitting power against power as the federalist shows throughout. most importantly they limited federal power through the enumeration of power for a few national concern.
to make that crystal clear, when they added the bill of rights, they concluded with an amendment that showed we would retain all the rights and we never surrendered and the tenth amendment which makes it equally plain that the federal government has only the power we gave it. in a nutshell, constitution is a fabric of the government and it has limited powers both enumerated and not. the original design was fatally flawed as we all know. amendment six that by fundamentally changing federalism, mainly through the 14th amendments, its privileges or amendment clause. we all know what happened to that clause and what happened six decades later when they turn
that design on its head by eviscerating the enumerated powers principle and the bill of rights and the role of the court, the judicial review and the non- delegation doctrine. rather than rehearse those here i will return to scalia's view. they cannot ignore the plaintext, but he does. i will start with a few powers cases where he tends to be better than right. i'll start with an anecdote which i invited in 1993. as he said where is the wine. i said this is lunch but he said so. we had to send an intern out to get a bottle wine and that
loosened our respective time that either of us needed that. we proceeded from there. i did say to him at one point, when are you going to revive the doctrine of the enumerated fellow. he said we lost that battle along time ago. thank you of that for that counsel of despair. two years later when lopez came down, he was on the right side as he was in morrison when that came down five years later. imprints, as john turley said, he wrote for the court in that case saying that the congress had no power in carrying out state officials into carrying out federal functions, but eight years later, the california medical marijuana case where he read the commerce clause so probably in federalist 42 and marshall and gibbons would have never recognized it as justice
thomas and o'connor made claim. even the correctly decided powers cases only scratch the surface of the enumerated powers document. we are far down the road toward massive unconstitutional government and i am the last to think that the court by itself will reverse that. in the right cases, they were more promising. scalia is altogether uneven in the interest of time, i will focus simply on the state police power cases where most of the constitution. [inaudible] consistent with the illegitimacy i sketched earlier, the police power we enjoy blocks executive power and then delegates the government. it's mainly there to secure our rights.
thus it's bounded by the rights that there are to be secured. the question then from lochner to lauren and in many cases in between, the question should be what rights the state is securing by law, criminalizing a contraceptive or marrying someone of another race. if the state can point to those no such right, the judge doesn't have to discover any on enumerated rights. it is the state that has to identify rights under police power. where there is no power by implication, there is a right. hamilton, wilson and others objected to adding a bill of rights because they saw was impossible to enumerate all of our rights and dangerous to enumerate only some. thus, structural limits were meant to secure liberty him a power pitted against power, the
enumeration of federal powers and later a reading of the state police power consistent with the privileges we enjoyed as citizens of the united states. indeed, if we had no) prior to adding a bill of rights or lose rights when we added one, that's the implications judges secure. the ninth amendment was written to spell that reading and hardly ignore it or ignore its complement. why do so many conservatives indulge that reading? responding understandably to the perceived judicial activism award in courts where scalia and others focus on the counter
majoritarian difficulty and the need accordingly for judges to indulge a path of virtues. in so doing they ignored and not deeply concerned the founders. they stood for liberty first. their main means was structure including revised federalism. we tend to think of it of state protecting liberty, but it cuts the other way too. it protects against grassroots tyranny and that's what justice scalia too little appreciated. his work for securing ritualism was invaluable and it will be long remembered for that, but let's secure the whole of ritualism. think you. [applause]
>> good afternoon. it's great to be here. judge pryor came and visited the law campus back in my day and i don't think he was a judge yet, he was rumored or something, it was controversial. a lot of the harbor faculty thought he would commence a reign of terror on the pension once i heard that, that was probably the best seal of approval i could possibly imagine short of an endorsement from justice scalia himself. sure enough he has proven to be a great judge so it's an honor to be here with him. isaac about congress's role in the constitutional system and a little anecdote or constituent who asked me about an issue with the municipal an issue with municipal trash clean up in their neighborhood. i responded and i said yes it's
an important issue, but i'm your federal representative in a u.s. congress we deal with federal issues. she said yes, i know, but i would thought i would start at the bottom of the totem pole and worked my way up. [laughter] the thing about that is there's a truth to that not just because congress is a punchingbag, but i think congress stands today as the weakest of the three branches in our constitutional system. i think justice scalia was always very articulate about identifying the structural constitution as number one protector of individual liberty, that you would have these different branches and they would keep with one another and that, even more than the bill of rights was how we would preserve and protect individual liberty. it's interesting, but the founders, if you read madison in the federalist, we hear about three coequal branches of government. they didn't envision to be equal, i think they envision them to be competing. they said the legislative authority necessarily predominates and although the revolution was a revolt against executive authority, constitution, the impulse of
that was runaway legislators really wanted to have a government for them by the people but they didn't wanted to be just attorney of majority. they knew it would be powerful, but they wanted to have other branches that would also check it. even with those checks, they that the branch that was closest to the people in the house would have the most power. if you look at the most constitutional design, look at the power to legislate. you can prevent an administration from stocking with personnel by not confirming people. you can impeach civil officers, the president, the vp, the vice president, you can circumscribe the jurisdiction of the court. you don't even need to create lower courts. you can abolish them. they understood the presidency would be powerful, particularly in in foreign affairs, but it was more of a check on the legislature as how they envisioned it. yes, hamilton said an executive can argue with enterprises for
the public benefit but the congress is in providing provisions or funding than they will amount to nothing. the court, of course, came up and said we are incontestable in the weakest of the three branches of the government. they have nearly forced nor will their judgment. an important role, absolutely, but, but you're not able to legislate from the bench in the current practice, to me, an executive is the most powerful and then i would say the court. the courts probably have as much legislative authority as we do. they certainly have more power over the constitution. part of the reason the executives gain so much power is through congressional neglect. congress will legislate and they will say well, we really can't deal with these issues so bureaucracy, you figure you figure it out. the bureaucracy effectively legislates very important policy determination. the hobby lobby case that went to the supreme court, that was not written in as a statue. that was a regulation.
obviously, congressional neglect has also paved the way for administrative overreach. a statute that's ambiguous or even if it's a statue that's been on the books for decades, they see the executive branch going on beyond that legislating new policies that have a tremendous effect on american society and economy. my first date of the union, when when i got elected in 2012, president obama came and said congress, i want you to do what i say, but if you don't enact it, i'm going to do it on my own we had just gotten sworn in a couple weeks ago. i was like that's not exactly how it's written down in the constitution. the thing that bothered me the most about it is not that the president was a asserting that authority because they assume that each branch would try to do that. what bothered me as i looked to my left and every single democrat in that chamber stood and cheered him when he said that. they were willing to put their
personal, political viewpoints ahead of their duty to defend their own institution which i think is defending the constitution. it's a problem in both ways. the executive branch and congressional accountability, we did this with the irs in terms of dealing with the targeting and i'm usually the justice department was not going to do anything pretty we knew that. at least conduct oversight and get documents. they destroyed e-mailed that were subpoenaed and they made multiple false statements. they admitted the statements were faults. they didn't do basic due diligence, but what happens? nothing. to me, the lesson that the bureaucracy takes from congress is destroy the stuff. don't worry about it because nothing is going to happen to you. if the head of the executive branch concurs and doing what you're doing. of course, the court have also help the executives become more powerful by deferring to what the administrative agencies do.
i don't think you should defer because that allows the administrative state to get bigger. i think justice scalia, no one has been more influential for law students, lawyers, judges, i just wish his wisdom would make its way more into the halls of the united states congress. scalia understood that you have to defend your own turf. one of the things that frustrates me is that some of my colleagues will say, if were debate reading of bill, is a constitutional question that we have the power? we will let the courts figure that out. we do whatever we think is good unless and until the court stop us. the problem with that is that the courts can only decide cases that are controversy. recently anything that would not lead to a lawsuit, you're basically saying that it's not going to be anyone who will
stand up for the constitution? our duty is to defend the constitution and act in conformance with the constitution. i was sad if there's a bill that's not constitutional, it's my duty to vote against it regardless of what the courts may or may not do. it's it's not just the congress. president bush, when he signed the bill, he set i think it's unconstitutional, but will let the courts figure that out. that's not the way you're supposed to do it. if you're not convinced it's constitutional you have to err on the side of exercising your authority to defend the constitution. i think justice scalia, i think he was kind of frustrated with congress. our big way to defend our powers, the obamacare program took funding that was really never appropriated. that's our core power. the power of the first. what we did is we filed a lawsuit to try to vindicate that interest. we were able to move the ball forward a little bit, but i think scalia would look at that and say why are you running to the courts to do that. you should defend it yourself. you have the power of the first
to not confirm people and impeach. whether you use those powers rather than running to the court. i think at the end of the day we are in this budget problem where we do these big ominous as it were not able to solve that's over not taking political risks to defend our turf and it ends up going to lets file a lawsuit. it's an honor to be here. justice scalia really was a man for all seasons. he was one of the few people to really make an indelible mark not only on the law but lyrical philosophy. i just wish everything that had been discussed on this panel in this conference could make its way to the halls of congress and we will reclaim our constitutional authority and get the constitutional system back into this proper form. thank you. [applause] >> okay. i want to first invite our
panelists to respond to each other, from your seat, hopefully your microphones are now live for you to do that. i would expect that perhaps there are some things he wants to say in response. >> well roger thinks i will attack, he weaved invaded every year year. i want to follow up with what john said. it's really important that you did what you did. i want to add, if you look at the separate opinion by justice pryor, the amazing thing is just as prior says i don't see why the federal government can't order local officials to do it. it's more efficient. in fact, they do it in europe that way. it's more efficient. now if you read the federalist, you will know that the crux of the whole problem in my we change from the federation is in
fact that whole point, you you can't have one government telling another government what to do because eventually it won't work. see the british accent vote. >> i don't disagree, roger and i agree on most things, but the one area of scalia's legacy legacy which i do find problematic was his support for chevron. it was sort of anomalous, he continued to support the idea of chevron even as we had this rise in the administrative state. i think he certainly indicated some misgivings about chevron, but that's always been the one part of his legacy that i felt was more sharply. [inaudible]
that's what i would add in terms of criticism. >> i would just say on that, as justice alito said he was actually changing on that. roger also mentioned the post-deal of original as him. although although he didn't specifically articulated this way, once you have the 17th amendment, it changes. the senate is no longer a protector of the state. that's what built the administrative space. he's trying to figure out how do you deal with this. how do you draw lines. will the courts and up replacing the administrative agencies and run everything. what most people don't understand is that was a real structural protection that is the driver behind the administrative state and the uncontrollable budget that is just not widely known. he understood that. with that, it is very difficult
to reverse the dynamic, and he didn't think the courts were in the business of reversing that dynamic. [inaudible] >> that would require an 18. [inaudible] [laughter] >> while this is breaking down fast. [laughter] i will begin with my usual admonition. these are the panelist, they were invited to be our speakers. we appreciate your presence here, we'd love to have your questions, but you weren't asked to be speakers today.
i want to ask for question, you can introduce it a little bit, but please keep it to the question. >> to the extent that you enjoyed scalia's original, original, i had to edit it, so you are welcome. just kidding. i only had to edit a couple of comments. i would like to invite speculation on his vote. was that his accommodation of the post- new deal regulatory or was it the drug were exception to the constitution or something else? >> and take it was his failure to agree with justice thomas on how properly to read the commerce clause. >> or was it the necessary and proper clause? >> i think it goes back to what i said, the new deal is a watershed but it affects not just the interpretation.
se, it affects the dynamic and i think he felt there was no way to undo that. when we would bring this up in sessions, he would say that's water under the bridge. look, he fought more battles than anybody else. i think there were just some battles. >> early on, when we would cover , those of you who were hearing justice alito and how justice scalia. [inaudible] early on when we were teaching. i said why don't you overrule this pretty sad my colleagues would never do it. he was even arguing for it. he was changing over time and then he would start to argue for it. it comes down to the votes on the court. either i have the votes there to do something or it's not going
to get done. one time i had a case up there and he said i could ask him "after words" why they didn't take it. the votes weren't there is what it came down to. >> if the federalist is one of the central topics on this panel , if you're talking about the general welfare clause, thecommerce clause and the three causes for which he had gotten, then you do know better than to look at federalist 41, 42, and 44 respectively to see what he thought madison got those causes were all about. >> but when not just people on the left, but overwhelmingly people on the right do not understand our structure, the latest poll on the electoral
college is the vast majority of americans want to throw it out. they have no idea what that will do. [inaudible] [laughter] they don't know what it did. >> we have another question from my right. >> if you know me, i will show restraint do not discuss the 17th amendment but what i will discussed. [inaudible] where they make the argument that the legislature is the real threat and the remedy for this is to break the legislature into two parts. i'm curious about the panels reflections on the modern age as it relates to federalist 62.
it's not a well formulated question, i, i think you can do something interesting with it. >> at least it was a question. [inaudible] some of the budget spikes that we have, that actually passed a unified budget for the first time in 16 years years last year, 2016 we started appropriation bills in the house and it got to the senate and harry reid would filibuster the bill even being brought up. basically no agency funded go all the way to the deadline and then for some continued resolution. they wanted to have a minority siding with the executive branch over core power, and i think we weren't able to figure that one out. that is not what we should have been doing. they should have been standing with the house to try to rein in
the president is how i think it was originally designed. >> i would add,, it's hard for me to say he got anything wrong, but the one thing i think he would've been astonished by is in fact the 2012 state of the union that they're talking about i was in disbelief that the president stood up and said because you have not carried out my reforms, i've decided to circumvent you and make you of functional entity and he got applause from half the chamber. i think madison truly believe that institutional interest would overcome political alliances. i had honor of representing the house representatives in the aca lawsuit. i have to say, i was surprised to see the level of democratic opposition. we were fighting over the power of the first. there is a strange thing going
on but i think madison did not anticipate with regard to who the members are and how they have changed. i think it's different. i was a 14-year-old page, there, there were people there who fought for the institution. they often put away their political alliances and fought for the institution of integrity of both chambers. that's what's missing often times today. i hear that in the words. >> let's wait two months and see. i guarantee you will have democrats more receptacle to these arguments and i think it's an open question about how republicans are going to respond if there are similar actions taken. are we going to defend the institution when it's the easy thing to do? hopefully the rubber meets the road on that, but i think it will be interesting to see how it shakes out. >> if i could just say, i'm so encouraged to hear the congressman comments about
reclaiming the lost power of the legislative branch this country. as i talk about the dozens of lawsuits we have filed, it was really a cause, we were were forced to file those lawsuits because it was very clear that the executive branch had overstepped its authority and what a president stands up and says i have a pen and a phone and i'm gonna do what i want to do and he's being applauded by congress, it's really disturbing if you don't get anything accomplished, we are looking for a candidate in florida and you'll enjoy that job. >> i think part of its political. we saw the election outcome, some people were shocked. they thought the the democrats would never lose the white house again so i think that was part of it, the republicans are to be in that spot so doing that is not really setting bad precedent. now what happened, who ends up president? donald trump who many of them are concerned about. be careful, never invest power
into a person who you would not be comfortable if your greatest enemy exercise that power. >> i just want to add that professor turley was the one who warned liberals before a house committee that you don't stop this president you're going to get a republican in here one day is going to do the same thing. [applause] >> question. >> i want to reassure professor baker that idaho loves the electoral college but we don't want to give it up. with 1,000,000 1/2 and a half citizens, we have a problem with overregulation. we have 122 sets of regulation in idaho. that's pretty much strangling us >> idaho just passed a constitutional amendment to have
a by camel legislative view. since we got the 17th amendment, is the legislative veto viable and i'm also wondering what roger and professor baker have to say about that. >> you want a legislative veto? >> i would love to have it myself. the two houses together here's the problem with many people on the left and right. they see a particular problem and they look only at that problem and they come up with a solution for that problem without thinking about the consequences the new problem they're creating. you have to look at the whole body together and figure out what you're doing. remember, the 17th amendment was passed with virtually no opposition by populace on the right and the left, except that
the populace on the left knew what they were doing. they were out to destroy separation of powers. nobody made the argument, structural argument. they made the same arguments that are today being made for term limiting members of congress. they thought it would be bringing senators closer to the people. nothing could be further from the truth. so, you have to know something about the constitution before you keep changing things in it. it's a matter of looking at what worked and why it worked. or to borrow a phrase, what really did make us a great country? [inaudible] neither of those amendments expanded because of the power of congress.
congress didn't have a bit more power "after words" than it had before, except as a practical matter, a political matter to say now you have clinical forces calling for the demise of the separation of powers doctrine but it fell to the court to expand that doctrine. >> but they would've never done it if senators were still protecting state, because they wouldn't put up with it. >> the idea, it changes the dynamic of power. what the federalist explain is that human nature and what motivates people. today we think policy. policies are executed by human beings. >> i used to be the chief of federal legislation.
>> what's your name? craig. >> one issue that i see related to federalism, i wanted to ask about it and what justice scalia fought about it, in early 1900s there was a case in the city of pittsburgh attacked about how they have authority over their federal government. what occurred to me in many my students when i change them about state and local government laws, they exercise a lot of authority over counties and cities in the state level. through a number of acts and statutes and through the administrative agency. i'm not making a normative judgment on that but i find it very interesting because if you truly have federalism that the federal government really is the one regulating police departments are state departments or county departments, not the state, do, do you really have federalism? >> you do federalism cuts both
ways. it's not simply the federal government has limited power and the states have the balance of power. it's rather that the civil war amendments change that arrangement fundamentally. now you've got federal power essentially to negate state actions that are in violation of their own citizens. that is altogether different than federal power which would give us obamacare and whatnot. in federal power to negate states that are running amok. that's the other side of federalism that they brought into being. that's the side that so many conservatives find uncomfortable because they think of it as empowering the court. what i tried to argue was no, it
empowers the court to tell the state what rate is this power protecting. when you look at everything from lochner to peers, griswold, lauren, you find that these are moral arguments, not defensive rights of individuals. >> thank you. >> could you speak closer to the microphone so we could hear you better. >> my name is justin pearson. my question is directed at the congressman. i want to preface it by saying i really appreciated what you said about the duty of elected officials do not support unconstitutional legislation. my question to you is whether you think that is mutually exclusive, but the role of courts to use the constitution to serve as an additional
framework as hamilton promises in 78 when they fail to fulfill that duty. >> absolutely. i think justice scalia would say, look, this idea of judicial review, it's not that were smarter, but this is a lawyer's job. you have a constitutional text in the statutory text if they're harmonious it's fine. if there's a conflict, then your job is to identify that conflict and apply the fundamental law over the transient impulses of the people as represented in the statute. that is absolutely legitimate, but, this is something that these cases are brought to them, they can't go out and do it and they can't go beyond where the cases. i would also say just because a court has found something to be constitutional, if you believe that it is not constitutional and the court got it wrong, then i still think you have the duty
to vote against the statue. courts don't always get it right. we have to render our own judgment. that doesn't mean you don't follow court decisions, but at the same time, we are not under any obligation to vote for statutes that we honestly don't believe are constitutional. >> i would just add that a lot of people don't realize that you can have two separate viewpoints altogether between the congress and the court and that is when the court rules on something as to whether it's necessary and proper, they are ruling as to whether the congress could find is necessary and proper. it doesn't mean as a member of congress that you have to say it's necessary and proper, that is a constitutional issue. >> next question. >> i'm with the madison coalition. twenty-five years ago i was in city council and we thought congress could fix everything, but i would be interested in the opinion of the panel about an
effort that's now going on coming up from the state. there are now 900 state legislators legislators and six governors. nineteen state legislative chambers and the republican national endorsement. for constitutional version of the act that almost every house republican voted for, it would require the congress approved major new federal regulation. the idea is that in the same way that states were able to force congress to propose a bill of rights without intervention and more recently, pressure from the state could persuade congress in its own interest and reclaim the executive branch has been been stolen. what are your thoughts on regulation and strategy. >> i'm generally against amending on issues like the rain back because we should've cap the reins act. i think it's important to use the constitution for something
we cannot achieve legislatively. i asked them again to bring up the reins act. i think it's a very useful tool. i think to get congress back in the business of governing, there's a not so noble lie that congress is governing when most, 99% of the agency decisions are not being reviewed. they're being done independently. i think that's a serious danger for our democratic system. more and more of our disions are being decided by this insulated group of agency officials or the public has no interaction with them and doesn't know who they are. even trivial things like some unknown office declaring that the redskins can't use the redskins name. that is a raging debate. i'm not involved, i'm a bears bears fan, but the fact is, you had this unknown office, you
don't have trademark protection, you can't use that name. it's an example of what we talked about with the fourth branch. largely that's insulated from congress. congress has the ability, the staff to seriously look at agency. that that would change if we have something like the reins act. >> i supported a constitutional amendments of war of words, and we mean it. >> next question. >> i'm worn and i'm a recovering attorney. i have one question. is there any vitality left, and if not why not. >> according to justice scalia there wasn't.
>> you can access the sales street by exiting the hotel at the door to the outside near the gift shop. please ask a staff member. they can direct you. buses will leave for the gaylord from now until 6:00 p.m. for the return trip, buses will depart at the conclusion of the dinner and every half hour with the last bus loading at 11:30 p.m. we you please join me in thanking this panel for such a great discussion. [applause]
and later "washington journal" examines infrastructure problems in the trump administration. the live look now. this is donald trump's private club in florida where president-elect trump will spend the thanksgiving holiday. we have learned that south carolina's governor will be nominated to be the next u.s. ambassador to the united nations replacing current ambassador susan power. the washington post wrote this morning that president-elect trump said he will nominate nikki haley. the nomination marks donald trump's first female appointment to a cabinet level post and comes as his advisers are seeking to diversify the incoming administration's rank. join us tonight for a discussion on how the trump administration might approach the issues surrounding biomedical innovation, healthcare and drug pricing. here's a preview. >> the market went up right after the election, within hours
of the election. at first dropped in then went right back up. a number of analysts, in particular, pointed out out that this is the time to invest in pharmaceutical industry. i think they made that recommendation based on what andy was talking about, but i also think another issue, and that is the issue of the assault on drug pricing that has been taking place and was one of the cornerstones of secretary clinton's campaign. that assault on drug pricing could have had a continuing downside impact on the industry. i think the expectation, now that secretary clinton is not in the white house, is that at least to some extent some of the
pressure that places all of this emphasis on the price of drugs instead of talking about the value of drugs is going to settle down a bit. >> a look at the future of biomedical innovation tonight at eight eastern on c-span2. coming up tonight on our committee and network, it's a look at school segregation in u.s. history. the school of journalism posted eight discussion on that topic and you can watch that starting at eight eastern tonight on c-span. >> here are some of our featured programs thursday, thanksgiving day on c-span. just after 11:00 a.m. eastern, nebraska senator on a american values and purpose of government. >> there is a huge civic mindedness in american history, but it's not compelled by the government. :
>> i know there's a small community, there's five to 10 really active users. there's another 20-30 they know a little bit and they start to think of themselves as communities. >> an inside look at the years long effort to repair and restore the capitol dome. justice kagan reflects on her life and career. >> than i did my senior thesis was a great thing to have done. it taught me an incredible amount but it also taught me what it was like to be a serious
historian at the second archives all day everyday. i realized it just wasn't for me. >> justice thomas. >> genius is not putting a $2 idea into a $20. it's putting a $20 idea into a $2 a sentence without any loss of meaning. >> and an exclusive ceremony in the white house president obama will present the medal of freedom to 21 recipients including nba star michael jordan, bruce springsteen, cecily tyson and bill and melinda gates. watch on c-span and c-span.org or listen on the free c-span radio out. >> now a discussion with the federal government's top technology officers about their role in the start and the future of digital government. lessons learned from covert data
breaches, what they hope to finish and what they hope they went off to the next administration. part of the annual tech crunch disrupt san francisco, about 90 minutes. >> first of all congratulations on the new product. apparently you got three customers before even announcing spirit we launched it about three minutes ago. three people a purchased license and so we're excited the people have already resounding and excited about what we are doing. >> fantastic. i'm getting adjusted. on the fly. this is the first modernization and it's been around for a long, long, long time. >> almost nine years. >> why now? >> we spun out at the last disrupt, so that was the start of this change of us becoming an independent company. that means a business model and we realized with 25 million
users, let's listen and see what they want. is the culmination of that effort. >> in that time you were the first to market with the slogan version of a data set covering venture capital, tracking new start up companies. in the interim you've got insight, and like 100 other companies have launched around this thesis of doing data analysis. would you di do anything differently quick do you feel like you lost competitive advantage by letting these guys take it market share? >> i don't think so. we still have i believe by far more users than any of them. we have about 1 million actor users a week. that alone lets us have got the reason people come to us is because our data is exceptional. people expect to see it.
we've democratized that data set and allowed anyone is interested to get access to the. now we've given tools on top of that to analyze that data and extract the value you're looking for from that data set. >> you have a number of users but you have right now three customers, right? >> as of right now. we can check. >> i am saying from a customer acquisition standpoint you guys have something customers. they are a little had. >> sure. we just launched. we do have other revenue streams. we have a licensing business where we have almost 100 customers who are paying for feedback. we also have advertising as well. this is our next foray into any revenue stream. >> if you have been the ceo years ago when crunch this was developing would you than anything differently? >> i don't think so. the cool thing about what we've done is we have built up all
these data, all of this. we are one of the first things you see when you search for a merging company. that's hard to deal when you're focusing on revenue and building applications. that becomes the thing you need to pay the most attention to. i think this is the right focus. >> i see a lot of other names of companies that are doing this data stuff get referenced in the press. if i look at clips about crunch base and the crunch base is used just by journalists, it's pretty minimal compared to some of the others that a lot more regularly. is that something you think is going to change with this new product? are you looking to open it up more, will it be more accessible? are you looking to partner with other companies to get that data out there and circulation of it more widely? >> one of the tools features is
you can make any sort of trance or listen have the complicated, and that's great. you take it and shared and it's not just share with other users of crunchbase pro. you can say this is a drug companies are emerging that are cool. you can take the same source impose a right on twitter and people can go access it, see the results and see what we were used. the thought is a journalist as example might make those searches and less those searches and list of the but that along with the article. here's the data that proves osha's talking about. we will use that crunchbase and we take that people use of the. >> i played around with it a little bit and i saw some of features. you have a couple of preset searches that are pretty cool. teach me a little bit. when you look at the teaching sal, what are you most proud of? >> we completely we architected crunchbase to support this. once you start playing and
trying out you will see its extremist as. when you're doing these queries, things you expect to take many seconds are almost instantaneous. the speed is super exciting for us. another feature is the ability to do relationship searches. a lot of our competitors what you look at the top layer. show me all the companies in a certain area or with a certain amount of funding. that's all top level. we let you navigate the entire graph so you can us ridiculous questions. you can ask up to nine joins, if you want, 25 filters. that much as question election all of the companies that have women founders who used to work in salesforce who went to stanford and ask mr. dick is question and get answers back in seconds. we are really excited about the. >> how many of y'all have used crunchbase? quite a few. y'all are engaged. y'all are excited about this stuff. and yet my twitter sadly empty.
come on, guys. >> come on. >> there are coming on and buying it. one of the problems that i had with the data set is that it was when i first played around with it continually consistently played around with it really dirty, like really dirty, fuzzy data. what are you doing to clean that up and what confidence should people have and the searches they're getting? should people think about as a picture an aggregate of what could happen? >> that's a good question. the last year we completely changed how we debated and get data into crunchbase. way, way back it just to be very committee driven, community was putting in the data. very little checks and balances to see if the data was any good. of a year ago, we have a new
strategy and we have four pillars of what is a good data set. the first one is community. we have 300,000 contributors adding in data into crunchbase. usually the entrepreneurs themselves. we have an amazing partner network, 2700 send us their portfolio date is and that's the stuff that's hard for anyone to replicate. that takes nine years to go into to form almost partnerships. we get the primary stream of data directly which is between the community of what they are. the third of the force automation. machine learning, and i, cloning of all tha but to sort of figurt what is happening in the ecosystem that might or should be and crunchbase illegal and see if it makes sense to be in the. the people doing the checking our research team. with a vast research team. probably much larger than most people expect.
looking and doublechecking and seeing what data should or shoulshouldn't going. the algorithms say this looks suspicious and the way we did it is pretty complicated. that research team doublechecks at all becomes a checks and balance. if something looks wrong i will go change. this is the representation of outlook for investors. you wanted to look right and good. if you start fudging things that start line, investors are going to figure that out and then you lose all credibility. >> i don't want to be a killjoy but endorse a couple of companies that are in crunchbase dynamite not expected to see like pied piper. >> assure. let's call those easter eggs. there certainly is some fun date in there and a lot of it has come through. >> by the way they are very cool companies. super amazing. what have you done to clean up the data set? walks through that a little bit.
when you look at working with david and want to set these things up i know it's a low-cost product, 29 bucks? >> yep. >> you want to have a sense of accuracy silos at working? >> when we knew we are building crunchbase pro we knew we would allow people to analyze our data set. we had to make it look good. a large part offer funding and went towards making sure that data looks good. we have spent a decent amount of cash on that process. we've done something like 8 million edits out all our data over the last year. one-third of that came from the community, one-third came from the automation and one-third of it came from our own research team. out of all of those edits across the data sets, you can tell we've been doing a lot of work. >> for sure. and it shows. it's a much nicer looking product than the one i was forced to work with years ago. not that i am bitter.
totally happy with the. one of the things people really liked about crunchbase was there was so open. at the data center all available and they were more of an ability for people to build on top of the data. this seems to have gone away. are you worried at all about this move from free to premium and what that may mean for the user base? >> thank you for the opportunity to respond to the. there's a rumor on the internet saying we don't have free apis. rasul do. we have 10,000 companies and developers all over the world using our apis, about a billion api calls a year. yes, but it is still available but not all that. some of the premium david we put behind a pay wall. that is sort of part of doing the business. on the functionality side,
crunchbase.com, the free stuff and i used crunchbase, all of that is exactly the same. that was one of the original starting points of what is crunchbase pro? what it can't be is taking crunchbase and putting pay walls in front of it. let's build something supplemental, add features on top of crunchbase and charge for those. we also give some of those features we built in crunchbase pro, we give them away for free. so anyone without a trial, without a credit card, you can go on crunchbase.com, on the left side, click on any of it. we let you do your first filter and up to one join each. how many companies -- you can do the search. >> i mean, i'm super lazy. i'm a reporter. one of the things you're describing is a functionality that still seems to be a little awkward. i remember at another company i used to work at previously, i had access to a database set
come and those queries were a little bit smoother. is there a way to refine that process? is a something that y'all want to be? >> we are going to listen to what our users say, iterate. we are in a world where we can iterate on weekly releases. we've been under stealth mode for the last year, what has crunchbase done lately? to look like nothing but now that it is out there we can really release new features, make changes and streamline it pretty quickly. what we have right now as a tool that is very powerful. you need to play around with it and learn how it works, once you've done that we think you will be pretty happy with the questions and answers you can get. >> i've been beating you up a bit about my problems i have with the product, but what do you see is some of the things that need to get done to improve? >> i think right now we challenge our users to say, hey, do you think the company you're
looking for is in crunchbase? oftentimes the answer is yes, but sometimes the answer is no. one of the challenges we have is how do we go and expand the breadth of the data. a lot of companies will talk about how many hundreds of thousands or millions of companies they have in the data set, but the rally is you need to have a level of quality that is up to our standards before we consider it acceptable to import. we want a large number of companies that have a high quality bar, not have the user figure out whether it is, alaska airlines in crunchbase? yes. we don't want that to be an expectation. we just what every company to be in there. there. >> so how do you get every company and there? >> we have a series of partnerships, think about improving our machine learning and all that but on the partner site that lets us go wide and deep. just today we are announcing we afford some great partnerships that the data is in crunchbase yet but we're getting it into.
companies like enigma, similar web, glass door, all of these different data sets we were going bringing huge amounts of their data into our system and allow you to analyze it along all the other data sets. really trying to get people thinking about crunchbase as the master record on the internet for companies. we think part of that story is let's become a channel and bring all these data sets into one place. >> so is the idea to become the linkedin of companies? spent i think that school. i think it's really cool. if we can, the linkedin and help companies connect with one another i think is a really interesting challenge that can take us into the long-term. >> what does a long-term look like? five years from now what is the crunch basic product look like? what's on offer?
>> if you think about every company should be in crunchbase at that point, we are going to focus on having company's get more and more about what their profile looks like. we are going to have that community aspect but allowing companies to go and put on applications, put in parts of crunchbase that allow users to access different parts. like imagine if it was a press release section that the company was controlling, or an rfp section, only certain types of companies can have access to the you need to have a whole lot of users using your stuff before you consider going though certain features out because adoption become so critical. >> one question i got out was up to the attitude as well, when are y'all going to do mobile apps? >> garate. three weeks ago we launched our ils ab, so if you're not tried out our mobile ils ab -- a great question, thank you. a lot of people don't know we
did launch it. we continue to iterate on the free stuff as well. it's available for everyone. there is no login. just downloaded. you can navigate our entire graph. we have a new version as soon as the apple store leases it. crunchbase pro will probably have a mobile version of that in the next few months. >> crunchbase trucks a lot of companies, almost every company that raises money. when is crunchbase going to be on the crunchbase against? >> we are now. right now we are not in the position where we really need to raise. it's more about find the best partners who can see our vision and get excited about our vision with us. when i meet those people and i have those conversations we might raise them but there is no pressure. >> among the features you have a crunchbase, there's lots of stuff about who was raised what
and again, not to be a killjoy but i am a killjoy, watching of a companies that have shut down. we are in a bursting bubble right now that is collapsing. alley some people say so. can you give me a list of the companies that have closed in the last month? >> literally right now? >> we only have 30 seconds. we will wrap it up. >> all right. there's a bunch of feature list on crunchbase right now. one of the ones we thought about doing that we didn't do was like the f. cup when you list. it's easier to look for companies that it goes in the last 90 days, they'd be sorted by funding raised and you see some interesting stuff. >> add-on that debbie downer of the no, i think we are done. thank you all so much for listening and thank you for being here. [applause]
>> thanks for dressing up, jagger, by the way. we have like i said an incredible, incredible lineup for you at our next out is an amazing reminder of that. before we get started i do want to remind you we have alex right here. now my duty is done. please welcome to the stage megan smith and alexander macgillivray from united states government come at our moderator kate conger. [applause] >> i'm really excited to be today with megan and alexander macgillivray. webcams have to get through from policy to open government to expanding access to technology. let's get right to it. i want to get through everything.
making, when you first started out in government he talked about feeling like the early days of the unit. when no one really knew what was going to be but there was excitement about the potential. you said it felt like 1997, 1990. sticking with that timeline, where is common at today's? >> it's interesting. alex and i were just talking about where we were all the way back in 2008 as an industry and the government itself. the cto office, our team, our job is to harness data, innovation and technology on behalf of the american people. it's a broad mandate. we are working to policy, working on modernizing government. also come how to solve the hard problems? working on all those pieces but what's been really exciting as neither of us had plenty good government economic cayman collected as.
it's been honored to do these jobs. really wanted to come and occurs people to come and join. it's really the beginning of digital government. year in south africa for the open government partnership which is something the president started with seven countries a bunch of years ago, now it's 70 countries. we have a digital to track. people are not only open government foia but really sharing code. us, uk, kenya, south africa, others are really starting to move into space with service delivery and the data sites and data-driven government and the quality of what we can use these incredible governmental budgets and access points for italy going to be realized. it does feel like that 1997-1990 time, ready or maybe 96 once and a while when it feels really early and we feel behind. we are on that path and we've got to ipo this thing and get
the american people what they deserve. >> there still a lot of work to be done when it comes to bring technology into government and you guys will have three and a half, four more months left. a-mac what are some the projects you're rushing to finish before you go to? >> so much is not just government projects but what we as an american people are trying to get done. it's everything from cybersecurity make sure we are tackling inequality, making sure we're working hard on some of the more interesting longer-range things like artificial intelligence. all of it is stuff we are rushing to get done. another great thing i would raise is some of these policies we've rolled out policies and now we're at the implementation phase. the federal source code policy is the help we need to help with this audience to make sure that the program in terms of open sourcing more federally funded, federal develop software as successful as we do that pilot program in the next three years.
>> are the projects that are going to be less than finish for the next administration to take and move forward? >> that's the history o of her country is kind of the handoffs. the use of technology and tech innovation is at the core of light, i mean, president washington started the army corps of engineers before the country was founded. i was just in the boston area, we are just at john and abigail adams house. he started the surgeon general. there's so much of a long history, vanderveer bush with fdr. president obama gets the internet and has been pursuing an extraordinary job of pulling in we call it t. q. tech skills, all of us coming together, there's other 400 people who have, to go service. the presidential innovation, entrepreneurs and residents across the whole sets of things. there's great work, and also my favorite things that's going on
at the social security administration has started doing coding at camp. we have 110 federal employees going through coding boot camps right now this fall. you employers are doing for weeks, or 12 weeks and current employers are doing for weeks but how do we sort of update everybody's skills? it's a work in progress. those will grow. the head of the u.s. digital service was talking about how this navy s.e.a.l. like team works together with all of the cio and other leadership teams in the agency is now feels like a real thing at it is scaling. so how do they transition, set it up to live for a very long time? >> that really also brings up the three parts of the cto's jobs. part one is that, building that capacity building within government and taking a lot of
the building blocks that are already there and try to get them to scale. step two, the second part is attack and other policy issues that come up which are really important. number three is making sure we are capacity building throughout the nation to make sure that more and more people have the opportunities that this crowd really enjoys. >> want other things and the policy arena that is worth touching on is something the president and others gave us as a resource as a new american resource within executive office of th the the president king. the policy councils like the national security council, national economic council, incredible colleagues leading lg those and, of course, we're in office of science and technology policy. they added an extra policy convening called a tech policy task force. i am the chair. people like jason, david, the white house i.t. team, mikey
dickerson, the federal cio tony scott, all the tech folks in the white house to our on this counsel with our colleagues. that lets as lead technical driven conversation like open source, a high, other topics so we can drive the best tech quality and have real engineers quality in the room as we decide policy. we want to make sure the policies are formed by the best technical skills our government has and we can reach out to our own to reduce and really drive what the american people deserve. we have those are considered coach, let's have them in our government. >> you have all these projects you're working on, open source, developing tech policy come international cooperation. we are in the new of an election right now. are there any of these projects you worry about being undone by future administration or things
that might not see it through to completion? >> it's the fourth quarter. great things happen in the fourth quarter. we have the baton so we are running as fast as we can. we are not really involved in any way in the election. these topics are so bipartisan, operating more effectively, higher quality service delivery, the kinds of things that the use of digital service to string together within the veterans administration, for example. now it's gone from 45 minutes to 10 minutes to sign up for health care on a beautiful web app that isn't impossible for people to use. congress has recently been doing some work about expanding usps and others. pretty confident that there is an executive order for the presidential innovation fellows that are doing amazing work on child welfare, in the department of transportation, across the board. this is an idea it's time as
come pick it is the beginning of the federal government. that she's going to accelerate we're pretty confident that whatever happens they will continue. >> i wanted to ask you about the office of personnel management hack that happen less you. 20 1.5 million records of government employees like yourselves were lost. he talked about this as a learning experience. what did you learn from this hack? >> this is not something that you need to govern the we've had more and more problems with cybersecurity across our industry, across government, across the nonprofit space and how to make this better, how do we get to the next level. we've rolled out a sabbath to the national action plan. we took some concrete steps. one of the biggest was proposing in 2017 budget to make a huge fund revolving fund to help the federal government be able to get rid of some of the oldest legacy services and move them into more modern, more secure services. ..
the government and techies believe that encryption is one of the 21st century marbles. it gives a defender this asymmetric ability to be better than its hacker. that's great. that's something the government, even the folks who have spoken out on this in law enforcement believe this is a foundational building block for what we do every day online. the enforcement community has certainly had many challenges with encryption and as a government, our stances we don't think legislation is appropriate at this time, but the issue of what are we doing both as a tech industry and government to go
after the bad guys to make sure we can still protect the country, there is no disagreement about that. that is something we all think is a good idea. i think that's how i would come at the problem, as as opposed to so much of the oppositional. >> one of the things that we hear, the work that is going on that is integrating the community, the da i asked, the defense department has a lot of national security and military leadership team in talent and venture capital. there are so many products in the security area, cyber and many others but we need to keep advancing these skills across the whole federal government and law-enforcement across our part in private sector. they'll probably talk more about
that in the specifics. it's one of the areas. i know the other one, you have some initiatives on really fabulous stuff, but again, more young men and women will be at the white house on wednesday. nine out of ten parents want coding products blocked so the more they are in active learning, coding experiences in k-12 and that college, as we adapt our college curriculum to have much more balanced science departments, this is 21st-century literacy that the president is talking about. we want to make sure it will deeply affect the quality of security. >> that collaboration between technology and government is the way to go and through that collaboration we are going to find a solution through
encryption? >> i think will find a lot of solutions by doing that, maybe technology and government but also technology in government and tech people that this idea of the tour of duty is generally really important. for example, if we were talking in a group, if we were at a legal conference and we're talking to colleagues and everyone was working in the industry, a very large number of this community at some point in their career have done pro bono in the nonprofit sector. one thing that's interesting to us is to see, as i said in the early day, to see how far behind we were and where we are coming from in terms of tech in the nonprofit sector and state and local as well as federal, and how do we get our community to have the tour of duty like law, economics, science, that rotate
in government. let's have it, not to take everyone, but more like the surgeon general. the surgeon general is not doing surgery, we get the best people to rotate that. that's what we want to do. we think it will have an effect on both modern delivery where we are starting to see how the quality of products that are coming from that kind of approach of policy toward us, having tech folk, economist, deciding policy together. not leaving tech for implementation later but as part of the infrastructure. and then how do we contact the american people to solve problems together and have our community as part of that conversation as part of our career track. >> this is something the president has been great at
which is bringing some of these really strong technical people into government. i had the pleasure of working right next to ed, one of the experts on cyber security and encryption in general. it's the right way to think about these problems with a real grounding in the technical reality. >> you mentioned how important diversity is, bringing diverse people into government and diverse students into text so they are ready for that path. you are the first female cto. what can you tell our audience about how to improve diversity at companies. >> think this is one of the great moon shots of the 21st century, how are we going to get the data facet of our country, which is the people, and the opportunity to play that balancing and include people and the opportunity that everyone deserves. a lot of times, when people look at diversity and inclusion, they are thinking almost a charity agenda like oh, i need need to include you. no, it's a deep prosperity. we are seeing companies like
intel and others really step up and put it in the short list of their priorities and talk about it in every executive meeting and really get out there. it comes from leadership deciding what's on the shortlist. of course everyone across the industry has been really pushing on diversity and inclusion is something to do, but a lot of times, if if you notice in your company, the leadership has outsourced its diversity team, you're likely to get anywhere. those people are incredible but there your coach and it's their job. one of the things that we also know is much of our challenge isn't. [inaudible] what are we going to do to change our system and build technology to help as mitigate. a good example would be media. if you watch family television or children's television, it's 15 - 1 boy programmers to grow programmers. why are we doing that. it's not true of the balance.
smart five to one or 41. had we give our hollywood teammate some tools to see the bias they have. i was lucky to work at the beginning with the team that built the macintosh with steve jobs. that team, if you look at those photos, seven, seven men and four women. all the women in the photo are not in the movies and all the men have speaking roles. the only recent one was joanna and kate winslet won the golden globe for playing her. i remember her coming out. she was from eastern europe and super tough. she was the only one that was challenging steven moving things forward. his son said mom, did you really iron steve jobs shirt and she said jeremy, i never ironed a shirt in my life except once for you when we were late for something. this conscious bias is all around us spread the line in that movie where they'd designed
all the graphical interfaces in the line is that she made the bag. that's not true. catherine johnson,. [inaudible] we need to fix the public record of the truth. we need to know that black women calculated the trajectory for the apollo mission. it's not in the movie. we need help from hollywood, from media, from ourselves from ourselves and wikipedia records that are correct. they've heard of edison but let's make sure they've heard of harper. >> i think that's great. >> you came to the government from where you really champion free speech as a core value, and now we have hillary clinton talking about twitter being a birthplace for the all right movement and a place where women a majority are experiencing harassment. how do you balance free speech
with encouraging diversity and supporting minority candidates who might experience harassment or micro- aggression as they enter the industry? >> that's a great question. i can completely tackle it in the five minutes we have left. i think it's one of the hardest things we have to deal with as an internet community. we want many, many different voices online. we want to hear from lots of diverse viewpoints and yet, there is this worry that the internet has become weapon eyes it's simply not something that as a government there's a lot to do about but it's something we have to tackle in in the industry. i think it's a really important thing for us.
>> one of the things the vice president has been doing an extreme amount of work around culture change and other thing, we need to change our culture that included everything from emotional intelligence and presentations and work that people are doing in this country to help our young people get the kind of tools they need. what other kind of tools they need to be adaptive learners, creative for national competitiveness and getting along across the board. these are things that were very mindful of and a lot of times the message you use is not like venture capital where you have scouts and scales. you're looking for somebody who's already got solutions to the problem and you're trying to help them. an example of that work, we
found that there were several jurisdictions who were already doing very interesting work with data and they've been driving this with his team with jared and others on criminal justice reform and we can look at miami-dade. they've gone through 4900, change the prison and changed other dealing with the mental health challenges. our incredible police officers, they they have a choice when i have someone in that date to take someone to jail or to take them to the emergency room. now they have an option and so 50000 calls of 911 and only a hundred arrests. now we have data science and solution making and it really requires all these skills and policy skills and amazing operational skills.
we now have different ways to do this and we have a data-driven solution that the president wants over 25% of the jurisdiction where participating in a by learning conference call and an online community where they are questioning, whatever tactic it is whether it's inclusion or justice, learning, et cetera, we can use these messages to try to bring different people together. >> it's a great example of the diversity of different areas for which the skills of the folks in this room would be really useful to apply, sort of the next step, they're eating a bunch of the social problems that we are working on making real dents and we need more technologist to come in on the area that they're passionate about. not everybody is passionate about the middle justice for all
the things you've mentioned. figure out what you are passionate about and go make a difference in that space. >> i'm glad you brought brought up open data. we are running a little short on time. one of the data sets i think americans really craved over the last few years has been data on police killing and use of force. you mentioned the data justice initiative. think of them for this data we have to look to news outlets like the guardian who is trying to count these instances. can you explain the challenges you have had in releasing this data at the federal level? >> one of the great things is that there is leadership in dallas and los angeles who are already releasing the use of data. there are about 12 data sets. we now have over 60 jurisdictions in the police data it's more of an enterprise
internal data across sharing. they are engaging the community which will engage folks nationally. they're noticing the work that was a really going on around the country. it helps us see where real challenges are. we hope to do that across every topic. our phones have amazing weathered data and tracking data and we want to think about every agency. opportunity and great companies are stepping up to add apps. they have opportunity score that helps you know if you should live in a place, what's the bus
route, what's happening with jobs, how's head start head start. we can really bring the most modern thing that the president addresses. and, i need your help over here. the tech company can solve this on on their own it would've. we need the policy. it's these harder problems that we have to dive together in, the opioid problem in all kinds of problems. let's dive into this with our new method. >> above to stay here and chat with you all day. i think we are going to get booted off stage. you spoke about government as a second act and for all these amazing technologists who have entered the white house over the past few years, what is the third act for you? what what happens in january? >> i will speak for myself, i have no idea. we are focused on completing this last part here, the fourth quarter and so it's hard to even think about anything else.
i will take a breath, see my kids more, that sort of thing. >> think they were talking about a recent piece about triathletes and this idea of techies who flow into the commercial private sector and startup companies and somewhat flow into the government and then the nonprofit sector, how do we get people flowing in those areas? i have always loved working on technology that can improve people's lives and technology that can reduce our impact on the planet. i think anything we can do around accelerating all the sectors as well as making sure that people, back to the missing histories, she said she grew up
in a very poor community and had she known that the woman she was playing, had she known catherine existed, she might've been a scientist a scientist or a techie or others so let's make sure what tapping everybody in through tech higher and anything we can do to reach out to everyone to make them creators which is the president's great hope, knowing that the american people always get things done, let's include all of us and it really makes us, it just changes the whole future for our country and the world. >> thank you so much for being here. i think it's almost an impossible task but you made me feel hopeful about government so thank you very much. >> come work in the government. >> i hope this was as exciting for you guys as it was for me. i have had a crush on megan forever, but please don't tell her, i'm sure she can hear me now. we will keep it moving along so please welcome to the stage
morgan and megan rose. >> thanks for joining me today. >> thank you for having me. >> so the stats are pretty harrowing between 2012 and 2014, the amount of venture funding that went to black women was less than 1%. so, i'm really excited to be talking to you today, i think you are a true unicorn in the tech industry of black females startup founder and ceo. so, tell me about the last time you try to come to this? >> great question. two years ago, it's two years older about two years old, when we first started, i applied to
get a scholarship to come and i was declined so i'm excited to be here for the first time to be on the stage. >> give her a round of applause for sure. let's talk about visibility. how important is it that you are up here right now on stage as a black female startup founder? >> i think being visible is part of any startup life. you want to get preston you want people to know what you're working on. if you're a thought leader, you want to be seen. i think for gravity, specifically, what we do is educate and inform and it's important that people know who i am and what were working on. i think thinking about diversity in general and startup diversity, a lot of my messages from people are inspired by seeing an all-black startup team and a black founding team and me as a black ceo.
i think it means a lot. >> definitely. i'm gonna keep talking about you being black and them will move on. you're on the verge of closing a pretty significant round. what was that like few? >> it's been a journey. media is hot and not hot at the same time. when i first raised our pre-feed , i started and realized there wasn't ready. i wasn't emotionally ready to go through that mental process of putting myself out there every day, too many meetings a week and so we stopped and really made sure that our metrics were aggressively overachieving for the states that we were in. we had almost a million visitors with no funding. once we got to that stage, we spent a lot of time trying to find partners and investors that really align with our mission, we brought some really great
people on board and now, as we go into our next round we are looking for strategic partners and it's been an interesting run >> what do you look for in investors, especially in terms of remaining authentic to the black community? >> i look for people who get it. you can tell in the first five minutes of a conversation with an investor if they understand and agree with the kind of ms that it is built on which is that black people influence culture that they are underrepresented in tacking consumer tech and that we have an opportunity to really build something interesting for an audience that is incredibly influential in our culture. >> you mentioned black people are underrepresented in the tech industry across startup and big
tech companies and probably more so in the venture capital industry. do you have any black investors? >> yes. >> charles king, absolutely. that's part of how we have designed our team and that includes our advisors to make sure that it's reflective of what we care about. >> you briefly mentioned that you do receive some criticism even from the black community. what is that about? >> i think because we are so visible, we are a media company so it's our job constantly to be creating content and pushing things out there. we also have a user generated content platform so a lot that's admitted from our user base and not everything that goes up is going to be completely aligned
with me personally or with other people in the community. there's conflict. there was an article that happened this summer and we started trending on twitter because people were upset with the article. >> which article was it. >> it was about hidden colors. it was a documentary and the guy behind it, a lot of people don't agree with his personal statements. it was tough. it was a tough day. >> how did you handle that? >> i listen to what people were saying, we had talked to the writer and ultimately decided to take the article down and then i explained what our process was in a little bit more about us as a whole because we are media company and we will have things that aren't always aligned. >> was that the first time something like that had happened where you took down an article based on the feedback from the community? >> it was. it was a tough editorial decision. >> do you envision you might have to do things like that in the future? what's your process? >> i'm sure we will, we make so
much content every day and as we grow we will put out a ton of content every day so i think it's about having a strong editorial team and community guidelines about what's okay what's not okay so if something is, it's not a surprise. >> we are all about creating relevant content for black millennial's. how do you you determine what's relevant? >> or to us, to me? >> that's a good question. i think it's really about listening to what people are saying and enabling them to actually speak for themselves. for example, a lot of our riders are from all over country. the remote and they can write on any frequency, anyone at this point can sign up for an account it allows anyone to create content and put it up. that helps us stay relevant where it's not just what's happening in the newsroom that morning.
we will move toward our editorial team doing a lot of the high-quality pieces of content and that you can't necessarily just right off this research. it needs to be validated, et cetera. then, the majority of the community will be from our users and will be relevant. >> what percentage of your content is from full-time staffers versus user generated? >> about 40% is our editorial staff. >> okay, just in terms of relevance, what have you found is relevant to black millennial's? i wonder, are you just trolling black twitter or what have you found? >> black twitter is amazing. i think our content ranges from essays, a lot of thought pieces and reactions to what's going on with beyoncé who might come out with an amazing album, there will be a lot of essays about everything and all the latest
serious topics for example, one of our community members was a law student at harvard and i woke up one morning and saw tape about a lack law professor faces and so instead of reporting that to cnn or new york times and then someone coming to report on it she actually decided to write an essay and put it up on the site and that's how the story got out to the entire country. >> a lot of, maybe not a lot of the content, but if somebody goes to your site, depending on the day or what's happening in the world, they might see some content about police shootings of unarmed black people. >> yes. >> what is your editorial strategy around that kind of really terrible events? >> those are rough days. i think usually what we try to do is try to find people on the ground in that city who are participating as activists
protesters and we try to give them the tools so they can tell the story from their perspective we spend a lot of time working closely with different activists making sure that we are supporting and can help distribute messages that need to get out. >> in the event that there is a video, associated with the shooting murder, do you run those videos? >> we use two, we stopped. we usually do some sort of trigger warning and then leak out to the video. i think as a community, as a black community as a whole, i don't think it's helpful anymore. i think we know what it looks like, we don't need to see it again and again. >> yes, i know, i personally, actively avoid those videos. i just know that i can't emotionally handle that sort of thing. >> although they aim to reach
black millennial's, i know some people who are white who read the site. my boss come i won't mention his name right now, but he loves it. what do you want white readers to get out of your sight? >> i think the mission is to portray and create an opportunity for the diversity and energy and creativity and to put the power back in our hands to decide what we want to talk about it and how we want to talk about things. so, my hope with anyone that's engaging with the platform is that they are open to perhaps changing their perception of what the black world in black interest in black news and black creativity looks like. i get a lot of, we have a daily e-mail that goes out. >> it's so funny, you should all sign up. >> it's an automated e-mail once you sign up.
the typical startup thing, but most people don't know that it's automated, so they respond. i get a lot of white women and in kansas city who are like hey, am i allowed to be here, i have a black child or grandchild and i think it's fantastic. those are great e-mails to receive and i think it speaks to the power that black culture is mainstream culture and it is assessable and it's something for everybody. >> so i imagine the white woman from tennessee, you told her that yes you are allowed to read the site. >> absolutely. >> you mentioned earlier that today you've actually launched a new version. what's so special about this version. >> it was originally on word press and what we have seen in the past two years is that the
audience likes comments and shares about four times more than the average user. not only that, they like to talk to each other. our our comments and section is just ridiculous. >> is a productive? >> okay, that is not my experience here. >> yes, i think that we have created this really cool space or people feel comfortable and they feel like it's an invitation to have a discussion, so we wanted to take that a step forward and build a platform that allowed people to do that better and then also, most of our users are actually on a mobile device so we needed to update it so it was a cleaner smarter version on mobile and then also enabling people to create content in cells and not have to go through our editorial team to get it up on the site. >> you mentioned on the prep
call that you felt you needed to first launch a media platform before even really touching tech and building your own platform. why is that? >> to be honest, i thought that, i think it's true, i think i had to be exceptional before someone was going to take a risk from an investment standpoint to say okay, they they want to build this mega platform social network media company hybrid and i knew that i'm a non- technical ceo, i have a cto and other cofounders who are fantastic but we needed to show we could build a large audience that was incredibly engaged to be able to tell a compelling investment story. >> got it. also, as part of the company or based on what's happening in the next couple months, you are launching afro tech.
i will actually be there at that conference. what should i expect? how would it be different from this? >> so part of this community building strategy is events that a lot of media companies have had strategies creating conferences. we did one last spring called empower her which was for black millennial women influencers and it was fantastic. it sold out in new york. as we think about how we want to move forward, we built these subcultures and communities, i think the technology and startup spaces growing quickly in the black community, and there weren't any real moments where we could all come together. there was some fantastic startup ceos and some fantastic venture capitalists that are raising their own funds, black and latino fun so we wanted to create a space where they had a platform and we could level the
distribution, the energy in san francisco and create this really cool experience. what you can expect is discussion and chats about success and tips that people have used to get to where they are. we will not have any diversity in the panels. we will talk about tangible tips and tools to get to the next level. >> we talked about this a bit before, you are about to close, about how much money are you thinking? >> our total outreach will be over a million and were super excited. we want more engineers to be able to build out the platform and build more video content. >> you have really great video content and i've been really impressed with it. >> in terms of this feature,
you've launched the new version of the site, you are are having these tech conferences, you're doing original video, what else do you envision for the company? you think as we grow, we will learn a lot more about how black millennial's engage online and that will give us access to a lot of data and, we are basing the company off this premise that black people influence culture so i think a large enough population of people engaging with our content across our ecosystem, whether that's web, mobile, real life, we can create some interesting insights about what might be happening, what are the things people are talking about which will allow us to create a compelling marketing story in the future. >> you reach about 7 million millennial's a month.
>> yes. >> what does that mean exactly? where are you reaching them? on the website social media? >> we reach about a million people on the website a month. then we have five instagram accounts, three twitter accounts, facebook page and those are actually unique engagements of users. our total reach is around 30 or 40 million on any given month and then unix are around 7 million people reached. >> i know you have a good number of partnerships. i believe google is a partner of yours. >> not anymore. >> while who are your partner. >> we have content partners with teen vogue, we've worked with change.org, and those content partnerships are usually around the interesting demographic that may not have access to our content, may be looking for an
authentic voice for their audience so for teen vogue we will do articles and engage their. we worked at the white house in different things. >> what have you done with the white house? >> whenever they're doing black specific announcements, we make sure we have access to that, when obama pardoned a bunch of prisoners the summer, we had the original statements and thank you letters from some of them. >> in your experience, what has been, what has been the hardest challenge? >> you're now funded by institutional investors. >> i think the hardest challenge of building in public, it's a very intimate company. we are building something that is a direct reflection of problems that i face and my team
faces and you face in our audience face so there's a lot of emotion in everything that we do and everything we create. it's a beautiful thing because that's why this grew so quickly. but, i think it's also very difficult because i open myself up to criticism anytime we release anything, and people can come up with some very valid arguments. i think it has made us stronger and more resilient. it has personally made myself more resilient and open to feedback, but it's tough sometimes. >> and you cover a lot of heavy topics. how do you ensure or foster the emotional stability of yourself and your riders? >> i think self-care and being really flexible so people can work from home, if something is happening, we'll say you're welcome to work from home, just check-in. i think personally, as a cofounder, we all went to
college together so i've known them for many years and so, if there's days where i just can't deal with it today, i will call in and we support each other that way, but i think for any startup ceo going through this process, it is emotionally draining and very difficult so you have to be proactive in taking care of yourself. >> i appreciate your work and i'm looking forward to the after tech conference in november. i will be there. >> thank you for having me. >> all right, who's having fun you are sir. thank you. i appreciate that. in the tech staff, i appreciate you are having fun can we get a big round of applause? we work through the weekend which bloggers are used to. >> thank you. they are the real heroes. a coupri