tv Politics and Public Policy Today CSPAN February 18, 2016 5:16pm-7:01pm EST
what we can do is to try to make sure that the picture that you have put up here shows continuing improvement in the labor market. i agree with you. i would say the signs of wage growth increasing, they are tentative at this point. there are some hopeful signs. but i think if the labor market continues to progress, we are very hopeful we will see faster progress on wages. and we will try to keep that progress going. that's our objective. inflation is running under our 2% objective. i expect that will move up over time as well with appropriate policy. but i appreciate your saying that some of the burden should also be on congress and others because there are so many problems in the labor market and particular groups we have talked a lot about african-americans
and the problems they face. they are not -- of course, the fed has a role to play but job training, educational programs, programs that address other barriers in the labor market, i think this is congress' job to address. productivity growth is very low. i think congress has always had a role in supporting basic research, making sure that the infrastructure of our country is adequate and putting in place programs that make sure that training and education are widely available. >> all right. let me move to a soft spot that i think exists in the economy. you and i have talked about it before. that's on oil and gas. the fact that the saudi arabians are pumping like crazy into what appears to be an oversupplied market causing the price to drop
a lot, which in some ways is very good for all of us, because it saves us 10, 15, 20 bucks a week or a month in our price at the pump. but it also is causing some job losses in the manufacturing sectors, the oil and gas obviously, transportation. can you comment on what the fed is doing or reviewing when it comes to oil and gas production? >> so we're taking account as you said of the fact that the energy sector is very hard hit. we're losing jobs there. but with respect to employment, although there really are very severe losses, it's a pretty small sector of the workforce overall. we're seeing massive cutbacks in drilling activity. and that's rippling through to manufacturing generally where output is depressed. so it is having negative
consequences. on the other hand, if you look at the difference in oil prices now relative to 2014 for the average american household, we're looking at a savings of $1,000 a year. and that's boosting consumer spending. and we've got these two negative force, positive forces we're trying to factor all of that in as well. >> the time of the gentleman has expired. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from illinois. mr. holgren. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, chair yellen, so much for being with us today. as you may know the financial crimes enforcement network is in the process of finalizing some new requirements to prevent terrorism, financing and money laundering under its beneficial ownership rules. whule i fully support efforts to curb terrorism funds, it seems
like the application of the rule to certain nonbank subsidiaries such as premium finance companies may not be appropriate. i understand that my staff is already talking with the fed about this issue but wondered if i could get a commitment from you today about trying to find clarification for if these rules apply to premium finance companies that are subsidiaries of banks. >> i'm sure we're happy to work with you on that. >> thank you so much. when you testified before the committee back in november 4th of 2015, we discussed the impact of the supplementary leverage ratio on custody banks. at that time you described it as a kind of backup ratio that works as a backup to risk-based capital standards. when responding to questions from congressman rothfus earlier today you stated that when the supplementary leverage ratio becomes effective that it will likely become the binding capital requirement for some custody banks. i understand some of these custody banks already feel they must discourage customer cash deposits. as you know these institutions have highly liquid, low risk balance sheets that support client needs. in light of this concern, will the fed consider adjusting the
capital requirements for excess cash deposits held with the federal reserve? >> so i'm not sure if the supplementary leverage ratio will become the binding constraint or not. i didn't intend to say that it is the binding constraint. there will also be so-called cifi capital surcharges that will come into effect that may make those the binding constraint. i mean, this is a matter that i understand what the issue is. we can look at it and discuss it. it was debated at the time. there were considerations on both sides. and a decision was made to include fed deposits. you know, it's something we can look at, but it was considered. >> i hope we are able to discuss that and also look and see if it's necessary for us to have congressional intervention as
far as legislation to change the rule. let me move on. i'm pleased by the news that the federal reserve is engaged on with the insurance industry on capital roles appropriate for the business of insurance. what are your thoughts on how that process is proceeding and when might we expect to see proposed rules from the federal reserve released for public comment? >> we're working very hard on that. i don't have an exact timetable, but we are expecting to go out with for each of the firms notice of proposed rulemaking so the public can react to these rules. the staff is fairly far along in developing these, so my hope is that it won't be too much longer. we have worked hard to have the appropriate interactions with the firms and other regulators to do this right. >> well, i appreciate your work on that. from illinois insurance is important. we've got some wonderful companies there, but i know they've got questions and
appreciate the interaction and hopefully resolution relatively quickly. one last question, will the federal reserve propose capital rule for all insurers it supervises and if you could explain why or why not? >> i'm not positive. i think for the particular cifis that have been designated prudential, ig, and metlife, they're likely to be firm-specific rules, but i'm not positive. let me get back to you on that. >> that'd be great. thank you. thanks, chair yellen. mr. chairman, i have an additional minute. i'd yield that back to the chairman if the chairman would want that. otherwise i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. the chair now recognizes gentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison. >> thank you, mr. chair and ranking member. as we start out i also want to thank some of the folks who've joined us for the hearing today. a good friend ron harris is here from minneapolis. good to see you, ron.
i just want to let you know that this active citizenship of coming to these hearings, watching things, is exactly what is needed in order for this government to function properly. in my view this is what democracy looks like. thank you all for being here. now, let me ms. yellen -- chairman yellen, let me point your attention to the words of a former minneapolis fed chair, outgoing president of the federal reserve bank of minneapolis. he made -- on martin luther king day, he wrote a blog and here's what he said in part. there's one key source of economic difference in american life that is likely underemphasized in the fomc deliberations, race. he went on to say that for t year -- he went on to say that he searched through the transcripts of the fomc meetings for the year 2010, his first
year on the committee and a dire year for african-americans in our labor market, and in that year a total unemployment rate exceeded 9.25% every quarter, but for african-americans it exceeded 15.5%. today, now white unemployment in minnesota is 2.9% as of december 2015, but black unemployment is 14.1%. and in minneapolis, white unemployment is 4% but overall -- white unemployment is 4% but black unemployment is a shocking 18.9%. so i say that because, i mean, this is something that i think needs the attention of the chair. and you may -- i don't know what constraints you believe are out there, but, you know, people -- race matters when it comes to how people experience our economy. if we don't discuss it and talk
about it then we won't ever get to the heart of the matter to how to fix it to make equal justice for all. and so, i guess my question, you know, i'll quote one more time, he said as well -- as we all know too well race matters. the average african-american's experience with the u.s. economy is different from that of the average white person's. so my question is, what do you make of the commentary from the previous minneapolis fed president? in your view, is there adequate discussion, attention of the economic situation of african-american workers within fomc deliberations? and if there's not, and i suspect you'll say there's not, what can we do about it? how can we at least focus the committee's attention on this segment of our fellow americans? >> so, it's, of course, important that we look at different groups and particularly those who are
suffering the most in the labor market. and i'm surprised that there was no specific mention of race. in 2010, unemployment rate was substantially higher than it was. the committee was very focused at the time on what we could do to promote a stronger labor market. and i suppose because our tools are not ones that can be targeted at particular groups in the labor market, it was clear what we needed to do and that was to support a stronger labor market more generally. >> but, chair yellen, forgive me for the interruption. i definitely think -- i get that part. but i would rather talk prospectively, because the past is what happened and there's no changing it.
how can the fed chair get the fomc to say, wait a minute. not all americans, particularly african-americans, are experiencing this upsurge in economic activity? for black americans, we're still in the midst of a very serious depression/recession. what can we do about it? again, i'm not here to say -- to wag my finger about what happened. we know what happened and it wasn't right. but in terms of what's happening now and what can happen, what can you tell me? >> well, i think you're right that we should pay adequate attention to how different groups are faring in the labor market. we've made clear that we don't focus on any single statistic, that the unemployment rate is only one measure of what's happening in the labor market. and it is appropriate for us to really try to do a much more detailed assessment of where things stand and what we should be aiming for.
>> time of the gentleman has expired. the chair anticipates calling upon two more members, mr. barr and mr. delaney, and then excusing the witness. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from kentucky, mr. barr. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and, chair yellen, thanks for being back before us. the last time you were here we talked about a qualified clo concept. and you were kind enough to respond to that question in writing. and i want to thank you for that. and i want to particularly thank you for recognizing that the qualified clo concept could be considered a positive development in the market. and i'd like to continue our discussion about the role that regulation could very well play in terms of being a source of economic instability, particularly in our capital markets. the basel committee recently finished a rule in january,
held a rule against the capital against disclosures in a bank trading book by up to five times the amount already required under basel iii, as well as the final tealak rules. one study suggests u.s. trading in asset-back the securities will become uneconomical if the rule is not tailored to fit the u.s. marketplace. if it is uneconomical to act as a market maker for commercial mortgage-backed securities or residential mortgage-backed securities, auto loans, credit cards, collateralized loan obligations, then banks will pull out of the abs market which represents a $1.6 billion source of consumer lending or 30% of all lending to u.s. consumers. so my question to you, chair yellen, is, how will the fed ensure that the final rule will be tailored to fit the u.s. market, which is the most liquid abs market in the entire world? >> so, i will have a careful look at that. i'm not familiar with all of the
details of the basel proposal. but anything we implement in the united states there's nothing automatic that is implemented in the united states. and we will have a careful look at what the impact would be. >> well, i appreciate you doing that and i continue to urge the fed and you in particular as a member of fsoc to look at government regulation as a source of economic instability. to that end, we are told by many of the regulated bank holding companies that there's no updated organizational chart within the fed. and so, my question would be, can you share with us or can your staff share with us a detailed organizational chart with the names and titles of the bank supervision and regulation division's full professional staff? >> i think so. >> the organizational -- as i'm told, whatever organizational chart you have is very dated.
>> yeah. >> so many of the folks can't even ask you questions. >> i don't see any reason we can't get you such -- >> i appreciate you doing that. switching gears to the consumer protection bureau and their funding source. which as you know, according to the budget overview the bureau makes public, transfers are capped at $618 million for '15 and the transfer is estimated to be $631 million for fy-'16. given that my time is scarce, if you could answer the following in yes-or-no responses, that would be greatly appreciated. does the fed approve the bureau's budget? >> i mean, we fund the bureau. >> you fund it. but do you approve the budget? >> i don't think -- i think the answer is no. >> right. can you veto specific allocations requested? >> i don't think so. >> and does the fed have
protocols if the bureau seeks to transfer more than the cap on its transfers under the formula? do you have a protocol in place to prevent that? >> i mean, we abide by the law. i need to look at the details of what our obligations and limits are. i need to look at that more fully. >> we would like to know if -- >> we have protocols to abide by what congress set out. >> see, this is the problem that we have is that we don't have appropriations over -- we don't have appropriations control over the bureau. so they get their funding from you. we would hope that they would at least be accountable to you as the funding source. is there any direct oversight of the implementation of the bureau's budget by the fed? >> no. our inspector general has authority both for the fed and the bureau. but the fed does not have authority over the budget and
spending of the -- >> thank you. thank you. and my last ten seconds, you have talked about the need for congress to address our long-term debt and deficit crisis. this seems to me a five alarm fire. why isn't the fed, given that mandatory spending is 70% of the federal budget, why isn't the fed more aggressively warning congress that it must reform mandatory entitlement spending? >> every fed chair that i can remember has come and told congress that this is a looming problem with serious economic consequences. i know my predecessor has. i have on many occasions. i certainly remember the chairman greenspan discussed with congress the importance of addressing this. >> thank you. >> time of the gentleman has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland. mr. delaney.
>> thank you, mr. chairman. and i want to thank you, chair yellen, for not only your leadership in general but also your participation and patience at this hearing. i want to welcome our visitors and guests here today and thank you for bringing your important message. we do talk about how our unemployment rate has gone down, which is has, below 5% now. but we all know when you get behind those numbers, there's really two types of jobs being created in this country, high skilled, high-paid jobs. we need advanced skills and advanced education to get those things. and low skill low pays jobs. what we are not creating middle skill, middle class jobs, that have been the backbone of this country for a long time and allowed wages to grow and allowed people to raise their families with one job. the chair touched on something very important, which is infrastructure. there's nothing we can do as a country to help address that problem more than rebuilding our country. if i could edit your t-shirts, i would say let our wages grow, rebuild our country.
because i do think it would really make a difference in raising wages. but my question for the chair and, again, thank you for your patience. in december when the decision was made to raise the federal fund rates, in your testimony you said that was in part based on a view that economic activity would continue to expand at a moderate pace and labor market indicators would continue to strengthen. certainly, based on the top line data from 2015 and 2014 where we saw decent gdp growth, improvement in the residential market, business investments at a decent level, not where we would like them but at a decent level, increases in r&d investment, even when you take in consideration the negative from the oil and gas sector, the outlook for economic growth was reasonably solid. the labor market data that you were looking at at the time must have been good. because the january numbers were encouraging, not only in terms of unemployment but some of the wage data as you talked about.
so i guess my question is, a lot's happened since that decision in the markets. that tends to change behavior. when you look at the same kind of -- the same data you looked at when you made that decision in december, if you look at that data now, does it change your view as to your perspective on economic activity, economic growth and general labor market trends? >> so i think the answer is maybe, but the jury is out. we have continued to see progress in the labor market over the last three months. there have been 230,000 jobs per month averaging through. gdp growth clearly slowed a lot in the fourth quarter. my expectation is that it will pick up this quarter. but on the other hand, financial conditions have tightened considerably.
and that can have implications for the outlook. and what the committee said in january we had previously said that we regarded the risks to the outlook for economic activity and the labor market as balanced. >> right. >> what we said in january is that we're evaluating and assessing the impact of these developments on the outlook for both the labor market and activity, for inflation and the balance of risks. and that's what we're doing at this point. >> when you look, chair yellen, at recent data that you get better than anyone about credit formation and borrowing activities in the market, are you concerned there has been a significant contraction in credit availability based on recent market activities? how much does that factor into your -- >> that is an important factor.
>> have you seen it? >> well, not really at this stage. but what we do see is that spreads, especially on lower graded bonds, have widened considerably. borrowing rates have widened. >> what about bank lending? >> and it's not just energy. in our most recent survey of banks on their lending standards, we have seen a tightening that's reported in cni loans, in cre loans. and that certainly those loans continue to grow. but that is something that bears watching. and those -- it's really those kinds of trends that we need to evaluate what are -- >> very quickly, as you weigh your decisions, obviously inflation and labor market participation are critical, overall view of economic activity is critical.
this subcomponent, in other words, what's happening with credit availability, how important is that in your decision-making process? >> what we're trying to do is forecast -- forecast spending in the economy, investment spending and housing are two important forms of spending. and credit availability factors in to our forecast for both of those portions of the economy. they're not the only factors that matter. but they are a factor that is important. and so we will be considering those. there's a number of weeks before we meet again in march. there's quite a bit of additional data we will want to look at. but you have pinpointed exactly the kinds of considerations that will bear on our thinking. >> thank you again. >> time has expired. the ranking member is recognized for unanimous consent request. >> unanimous consent to insert into the record a statement from
financial innovation now that would like to highlight the very important work that fed reserve board is doing through their faster payments task force of which ben is a member. >> without objection, i thank chair yellen. i thank you for your testimony today. without objection, all members will have five legislative days within which to submit additional written questions to the witness from the chair. i ask chair yellen that you please respond promptly. without objection, all members will have five legislative days within which to submit materials to the chair for inclusion in the record. this hearing stands adjourned.
tonight on "american history tv," archival coverage of past presidential campaigns with a number of programs, some highlights including bill clinton's 1992 new hampshire primary concession@7,h speech a 8:00 p.m. at 8:55 p.m. eastern campaign film from barry goldwater's 1964 new hampshire campaign. a 1980 interview with ronald reagan while on the campaign trail in new hampshire and at 11:30 the 1984 democratic presidential candidates debate in iowa. also campaign ads and 1980 interviews with john anderson, howard baker, and george h.w. bush and more. all of that tonight on "american history tv" on c-span3. hillary clinton's in nevada tonight at a get out the vote rally taking place at the laborers international union in las vegas.
live coverage on c-span starts tonight at 11:30 eastern time. c-span's coverage of the presidential candidates continues this week with campaign events in south carolina and nevada, leading up to the south carolina gop primary and the nevada democratic caucuses, on saturday, february 20th. our live coverage of the results starts on saturday at 7:30 p.m. eastern with the candidate speeches and your reaction to the results on c-span, c-span radio and cspan.org. tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span, a debate on drone strikes as part of counterterrorism strategy. two former defense department officials take opposite sides of the issue. maryellen o'connell now a professor at notre dame university law school says the program increases national security threats. and depaul law school professor alberto cole defends the program. >> some of you might be asking
why are we still talking about drones. isn't isis the only issue on the national security agenda. and i think you're right to ask that. but in my view in the comments i want to make, i'll bring these two topics together, because i link our policy of counterterrorism that so came to focus on and use the drone as in part responsible for the rise of isis. isis came up from, according to the cia nowhere, but, of course, they were around, the cia just didn't watch as it was focused on using drone killings. drones that terrorize the people who are affected not just the targets, but those who have to live under the constant threat of attack. and they are open to the recruitment by groups like isis when they say the people who sent you the drones are our enemies and we are going to train you to fight that.
in fact, the drone has become the single biggest recruiting tool for islamic terrorist organizations since guantanamo was used for that purpose. >> obviously, you know, drone strikes are designed to be proportional. sometimes they do cause collateral damage. sometimes innocent people get killed and we could, again, look at how we could make some of these operations much more discriminate. we do go out of our way to make these operations very discriminatory and we try to avoid collateral damage. we make every effort not to hit individuals who are present in mosques, in hospitals, in places where there's a very high likelihood of high collateral damage. of course, we still wind up killing innocent people. but i suggest to you that if we were to use so-called police tactics as maryellen suggests, if we were to send u.s. special
operations forces to arrest these individuals, we would still have massive collateral damage. we would still wind up killing lots of innocent people because the militants against which we would direct these so-called police tactics would have armed supporters around them, and they would use shelters in the civilian population to force us to cause these civilian casualties. >> the entire debate on drone strikes as a counterterrorism weapon is hosted by the chicago council of global affairs and can be seen tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span. homeland security secretary jeh johnson says counterterrorism remains his department's mission for this year. during last week's talk he updated immigration enforcement cybersecurity, airport passenger screening, dhs personnel training along with a visa waiver and refugee admissions
programs. the woodrow wilson center hosted this event. >> i'm not used to the applause. i want to thank walter isaacson for bringing some of the dignity of the aspen institute to the wilson center. good morning, everyone. i'm jane harman, the president and ceo of the wilson center, and i want to take a moment to recognize all my colleagues from the aspen institute's homeland security advisory council, especially my co-chair michael chertoff in the middle there. he's homeland number two. and here's a list of other dignitaries. let me first recognize my colleagues from that committee, in addition to michael we have
clark kent irvin who is the director of the program. charlie allen of the chertoff group, formerly of some very senior intelligence posts. p.j. crowley. raj day. mike hayden, another of the luminaries from the intel world, now with the chertoff group. david hamen. jim loy. christian morone, who used to be chief to homeland. and paul mchale in a senior post at dod, mike morell now at beacon global strategies. eric olson, former head of major agency, intel agency, at the pentagon. veil oxford. john pistol, former tsa administrator. starns walker. and judge bill webster, who has done every important job in government brilliantly. and also i want to recognize dr.
susan demarco who is jeh johnson's wife and the superior member of the johnson household. ali majorcos, susanne spaulding who is undersecretary for cyber and infrastructure and a former member of team harman on capitol hill and peter nefinjer who is a former senior coast guard official. this is secretary jeh johnson's third tour at the wilson center, like a rock band. we're thinking of getting him a smithsonian badge and it's meant a lot to me personally that he's made his homeland security address an annual wilson center tradition. when i saw him a few nights ago he mentioned that his draft for this year's speech had hit 6,600 words up from 4,000 last year so
we'll be passing around pillows and jackets, settle in, folks. as some of you know i was one of the god mothers of the department of homeland security, so let me offersecurity. let me offer one of the insights. as many of you know, dhs, most of you know the history. they were cobbled together out of 22 agencies. just about every cabinet department kicked in a bureau or two. whether it was the justice treasury or agriculture. that department had to report and still does to a slew of congressional oversight committees in one of the most complicated mazes i have ever seen. it's a game of where's waldo. face with a reporting structure from hell, the focus they have brought to the mission is impressive. it is certainly more focused than congress is. in large part that's a credit to jay who brings incredible skills
to his gig as the department's fourth secretary. he and michael chertoff helped make it a manageable organization and while the polls are not sterling, the improvements have been significant. and because no good deed goes unpunished, jay is being handed new responsibilities and the infrastructure and private sector networks and an effort these are incredibly tough tasks, but to paraphrase the late great jack, i sleep better each night, a little more confidently because jay is at the helm of the homeland department. jay can probably tell you how many hours and minutes he has left before he gets to retire.
his wife, susan will kill me if i suggest he stays longer than he has to. it's a fact that homeland secretary number five will have big shoes to fill. it's an honor to welcome a dear friend jay johnson back to the wilson center. >> thank you very much. i want to say welcome to the many guests and senior leaders who were here. members of the press. dr. dimarco and her sister. she was visiting from
connecticut. and my niece, ellie. sarah harrison who has control of my slides. good morning and thank you for hosting me again for this annual ritual. jane is a terrific supporter of our department and our homeland security mission. and a voice of strength and common sense in this town. jane, for the third year in a row, i continue to appreciate your leadership and your mentorship. thank you. today i will outline the progress we made in 2015 in the goals the president and i have for the department of homeland security in 2016. in the remaining 344 days of this administration. i intend to make every day count. the former president of my alma
mater used to tell his students we only have just a minute and eternity is in it and it's up to us to use it. with deputy secretary as my partner, we will push an aggressive agenda to the end. i begin these remarks with a shout out to the men and women of dhs led by the terrific component heads seated before me. that's good news and no news is very often the product of extraordinary courageous effort. our people put in every day to keep the american public safe. they screened 450 million pieces of checked luggage, the highest in six years. they seized a record number 2500
firearms from carry-on luggage, 84% of which were loaded. the last fiscal year, they screened 26.3 million containers and million commercial and private aircraft, 436,000 buses, ferries and trains and 103 million private vehicles and 382 million travelers at land, marines and airports entry to the united states. at the same time cvb collected nearly $46 billion in duties, taxes and fees, making it the second largest revenue collection in the u.s. government. last fiscal year, they made a record high 33,000 criminal arrests including the alleged members of gangs and 2400 alleged child predators.
last fiscal year, the coast guard saved over 3500 lives and seized 319,000 pounds of cocaine and 78,000 pounds of marijuana worth a total of 4.3 billion wholesale. in just one mission, off the coast of central and south america, the national security cutter stratton seized over $1 billion in cocaine along with two drug cartel -owned submercibles. last year the secret service successfully orchestrated what may have been the largest domestic security operation in the history of this country by providing physical security to 160 world leaders at the un general assembly and at the same time providing security for pope francis as he visited new york, washington, and philadelphia. he was there to help communities
recovering for flooding in texas and south carolina. tornados in oklahoma and typhoons in the western pacific. this past sunday, dhl personnel from tsa and hsi and fema and nppd, the coast guard and other components led the effort to provide ground, air, maritime and cyber security for super bowl 50. they can save lives and go above and beyond the call of duty. in late december, they traveled miles on food or by horseback to come to the aid of a rancher. two uniformed officers helped save the lives of a journalist who suffered a heart attack in the east room of the white
house. last july, the coast guard swam nearly a mile at night and 30 mile per hour winds to save the lives of four stranded fisherman. we honor those killed in the line of duty. hsi was killed last month by a hit-and-run driver in miami. i was glad to at least have the opportunity to visit with them and hold scott's hand before he was declared brain dead. his funeral was ten days ago. our people do extraordinary work to protect the homeland. please consider thanking a tso, a coasty and a customs officer or a border agent. next time you see them.
we must improve the manner in which the department conducts business. reform the in which they function to more effectively and efficiently they have services to the american people is my new year's resolution for 2016, we have done a lot in the last two years and under the leadership for the management there is still much we will do. my overearching goal is secretary the last year is to continue to protect the homeland. and leave the department of homeland security a better place than i found it. which focuses on getting away from the stove pipes in favor of more centralized programming, budgeting and acquisition processes. we have transformed our approach
to the budget. we focus on our mission needs rather than through com and we transformed the approach. we established a joint requirements council. to evaluate from the whole and our components's needs. on the front end of an acquisition. we have launched the acquisition innovations in motion to consult with the contractor community about ways to improve the quality and timeliness of the process and the emerging skills required of our acquisition and we are putting faster processes in place. we are reforming the process and making the hiring process faster
and more efficient. we are using all the tools we have to recruit, retain, and reward personnel. they were dedicated along the southern border. once again, we are getting away from the stove pipes. in 2015, they became fully operational. in 2016, we are asking to officially authorize them in legislation. we are achieving more and stacked up the office of immigration statistics and gave it the mandate to emigrate immigration data. we reported the total number of repatriations, returns and removals on a consolidated basis.
we provided a better picture to overstay the visitor visas. it reflects about 1% of those who entered the country by air or sea or through the visa waiver program overstay. we are working with outside experts on a project called border stat. that's to develop a cheer set of metrics for measuring border security and apprehension and inflow rates. since 2013, we spearheaded something called the dhs data framework for the protection of the homeland where improving the collection and comparison of travel immigration and other information against classified intelligence. we will do this consistent with laws and policies that protect privacy and civil liberties. as we proposed, i want to restructure the national protection and programs director
from the headquarters to an operational component called the cyber and infrastructure protection agency. i am pleased that the 2016 budget adopted by congress and signed by the president is part of our spending deal reached in december. i am pleased with that. it funds all of our homeland security priorities including finally the completion of the main building of the new dhs headquarters at st. elizabeth's campus. i will never get to work there. perhaps they will name a courtyard or conference room after me. the budget request for 2017 funds key priorities and the secret service and recapitaliation of the coast guard and provides a huge
increase in cyber security. we have been on a campaign to improve morale. it takes time to improve a workforce of 240,000 people they improved in a number of components. this year we will see an improvement in employee satisfaction across dhs. in 2016, counter terrorism will remain the cornerstone. the events reinforced this. and required a new type of response.
we have worlded from directed attacks to a world that includes the threat of terrorist-inspired attacks in which the terrorist may have never come face-to-face with a single member of the terrorist organization and self radicalizes inspired by something on the internet. by nature, they are harder to detect by the intelligence and law enforcement. that could occur with more notice and makes for a more complex homeland security challenge. what are we doing about this? the government with the coalition partners continues to take the fight overseas. i till is the terrorist organization on the world stage. since september 2014, air strikes have led to the death of a number of leaders and those
focused on plotting ex-personnel attacks in the west. at the same time isil lost about 40% of the populated areas it once controlled and thousands of square miles it once controlled in syria. on the law enforcement side, they do an excellent side of preventing and protecting and prosecuting plots here in the homeland. as for the department of homeland security, following the attacks in ottawa, canada in 2014 and reaction to terrorist groups public calls for attacks on government installations in the western world. i directed our federal protective service to enhance the presence and security at various u.s. government buildings around the country. given the prospect of the terrorist inspired attack in the homeland, we have intensified our work with state and local law enforcement. almost every day dhs and the fbi
share intelligence and information with joint terrorism task forces and local police chiefs and sheriffs. we provided over two billion in homeland security assistance to state and local governments around the country. overtime for cops and firefighters. emergency vehicles and communications that took place in the subways last november and the series in miami, florida. for 1200 new cops in december, given the current threat environment, it is the cop on the beat who may be the first to detect the next terrorist attack in the united states. we are enhancing information sharing with organizations that
represent businesses and colleges and professional sports and critical infrastructures. we enhance measures to detect and prevent travel by foreign terrorist fighters. we are strengthening the visa waiver program that permits travelers from 38 countries. we collect more information for the system with travel authorization. the travelers from there are required to use. they were denied travel here in fy 15. in august 2015, we introduced further enhancements. through the passage in december of the visa waiver program and terrorist travel enhancement, congress cotified into law
several of these security enhancements and placed new restricts on eligibility for travel to the u.s. without a visa. we began to enforce them on january 21st. waivers from the restrictions were only granted on a case by case basis. it is in the law enforcement or national security interest of the interest to do so. they were the result of this new law and may still apply for the visa to travel to the u.s. we are expanding the use of social media. today social media is used for over 33 different operational and investigative purposes within dhs. beginning in 2014, we launched four pilot programs that involved consulting social media for applicants for immigration benefits. uscis reviews the social media
of the syrian refugee applicants preferred for vetting. based on the recommendation of a social media task force within dhs. i determined that we must expand the use of social media further, consistent with law. cvp is deploying the customs personnel to preclear travelers before they get on flights to the united states. at present we have the capability at 15 airports overseas and last year through preclearance we denied boarding to over 10,700 travelers or 29 per day seeking to enter the united states. as i said here last year, we want to build more of these, i announced 10 additional airports in nine countries that we prioritized for preclearance. for near, congress and others urged us to develop the
biometric exit to take the fingerprints or other data of those who leave the country. they have begun testing technologies can be deployed nationwide. that's over a period of years to pay for the biometric exit. i directed the system starting and i announced the schedule of the real id law that goes into effect two and four years from now. at present, 23 states are compliant with the law. 27 have extensions and six states or territories are out of compliance. now that the final time table for implementation of the law is in place, we will urge all
things for the good of the residents to issue real id driver's licenses as soon as possible. if you see something, say something must be more than a slogan. we continue to stress this. dhs established partnerships with the nfl and to raise public awareness at sporting events and informed and vigilant public contributes to that. we reformed and tasked the national terrorism advisory system. in 2011, we replaced the color coded alerts. we never used it. that consisted of two alerts. elevated and eminent and depended on the presence of a known specific and credible threat. this does not work in the
current environment. that includes the threat of homegrown self radicalized terrorist inspired attacks. in december, we added a new form of advisory. the pubulletin is on how the public can help. given the nature of the threat, building bridges. diverse communities has become a homeland security imperative. well informed families and communities are the best defense against terrorist ideologies. al qaeda and the islamic state are targeting muslim communities in this country. we must respond. this is as important as any others. in 2015 we took the efforts to new levels and created the office of community partnerships
headed by george celine. they are the central hub of the department's efforts to counter violent extremism in this country. and the lead for a new inner agency task force that includes dhs, doj, fbi and other agencies. we are taking aggressive steps to improve aviation and airport security. the public should be aware because of this increased traveler volume, wait times increased in airports. we believe this is necessary for the public's own safety. since 2014, we enhanced security at the last point of departure and foreign governments replicated enhancements. many of you know a certain classified dhs inspector general's test of tsa screening at eight airports reflected a fail rate and was linked to the
press. i directed a 10-point plan to fix the program identified by the inspector general. under the new leadership over the last six months, tsa has aggressively implemented this plan. this included back to basics retraining of the entire tso force, increased use of trace detectors and testing and reevaluating the screening equipment that was the subject of the ig's test. a rewrite of the standard operating procedures manual and increased manual screening and less managed inclusion. implemented on or ahead of schedule. we are also focused on airport security. in april of last year, tsa issued guidelines to domestic airports to reduce access to secure areas. to require that all airport and airline personnel pass through the screening if they board a flight to conduct more frequent
screening of airport and airline personnel and conduct background checks of airport and airline personnel. since then, employee access points have been reduced and random screens of personnel within secure areas has increased four-fold. we are continuing the efforts in 2016. two days ago, they issued guidelines to enhance the screening of aviation workers in the secure area of airports. while counter terrorism remains the department's mission. making improvements to the nation's cyber security is a top priority for me and president obama before we leave office.z;b two days ago was the culmination of the effort guy his administration. this is a commission on
enhancing national cyber security. additional investments in technology and cyber security and cyber education and new talent and the federal workforce and improved incident response. dhs has a role in almost every aspect of this plan. as reflected in the president's 2017 budget request, we want to expand the response team from 10 to 48. we are doubling the number of advisers to in effect make house calls to assist private sector organizations with in person customized security assessments and best practices.
>> to get the receipt and distribution of the indicators in near realtime speed. we built this in a way that includes privacy protections. we did this ahead of schedule. i issued an aggressive time table for improving federal civilian security through two programs. the first is called einstein. einstein had the ability to detect and monitor cyber security threats in our federal civilian systems and are in place across all departments and
agencies. einstein 3 a is the newest iteration of the system. has the ability to block the attacks on the federal systems. thus far, they have actually blocked 700,000 cyber threats and we are rapidly expanding this capability. about a year ago, they covered only about 20% of the federal civilian networks. in the wake of the opm attack in may of last year, i directed the team to make at least some aspects available to all federal departments and agencies by the end of last year.
>> that's to identify the high value systems. i am working aggressively to increase the security. in september, dhs awarded the grant and the university of texas, san antonio to identify a common set of practices from the development of information sharing and analysis and that's for passing the cyber security act. this is a huge assist to dhs and the cyber security mission. we are in the process of implementing the new law now.
turning to immigration and border security, as i explained it to both democrats and republicans, immigration policy must be two sides of the same coin. the resources we have to enforce immigration laws are finite and must be used wisely. this is true of every one as prosecution discretion. ics sis focused on public safety and border security. those who are convicted of serious crimes and who are apprehended at the border are top priorities for removal and we will enforce the law in affordance with these priorities. accordingly, over the last several years. deportations have gone down. they recall convicted criminals.
because we are asking enforcement officers to focus we have also prioritized the removal of those apprehended at the border. we cannot allow them to be open. this investment yielded positive results. apprehensions which are an indicator of total attempts to cross the border illegally are a fraction of what they used to be. in 2014, overall apprehensions increased as we saw a spike in the number of families and unaccompanied children during the spring and summer of 2014.
that year the overall number of apprehensions was 479,000. across the government we responded to this surge and the numbers fell sharply within a short period of time. in fy 15, the number of those apprehended was 331,000. with the exception of year, this was the lowest number since 1972. from july to december 2015, the number of migrants began to climb again. in january i announced a series of focused enforcement actions to take into custody and remove those who have been apprehended at the border in 2014 or later and removed by an immigration court. this made a lot of people i respect very unhappy. but as i said, you must respect the law in accordance with priorities and enforce it. in january overall apprehension
hengzs dropped 36% from the month before. at the same time the number of unaccompanied children apprehended dropped 54% and the number of those in families dropped 65%. so far in february the numbers remained at this decreased level. the six-week decline is encouraging. it doesn't mean we can dial back the efforts. we will continue to enforce the law consistent with the priorities. that includes those apprehended at the border in 2014 or later. then the other side of the coin. the new enforcement policy we announced in 2014 makes clear or limited resources will not be focused on the removal of those who committed no serious crimes and have families here. under the policy, these people are not priorities for removal
nor should they be. the president and i want to offer to those of you who have been here for at least five years and are parents of u.s. citizens and committed no serious crimes the opportunity to request deferred action on a case by case basis and come out of the shadows and be held accountable. we are pleased that the supreme court has agreed to hear the cases of texas versus the united states. they have the new nevered actions policies announced in 2014. the ending of the security communities and the new deferred action policy now in the courts are among ten executive actions the president and i announced in 2014 to fix the broken immigration system. we issued a proposed rule to expand eligibility for provisional hardships of the three and ten-year bars.
we are preparing to issue the final rule. we published new guidance for comment. we plan to issue final guidance very soon. we are about to publish a rule to strengthen the program that provides training for students and stem fields. we allow spouzs of high schooled h 1 b workers here in the united states under visas to apply for work authorization. we are working with the department of labor and others to ensure for the protection of workers, the consistent enforcement of federal labor, employment and immigration laws. we are promoting access through the task force on new americans. the week of september 14 to 21, we celebrated the stand stronger
commitment to citizenship campaign. in that one week, uscis naturalized 40,000 people and we permit credit cards as a payment option for naturalization fees. the policy is to focus the immigration resources more effectively on threats to public safety and border security and within our existing legal authority to do as much as we can to fix the broken immigration system. we are disappointed that congress has not been the partner in this effort bypassing comprehensive immigration reform legislation. finally we recognize that more border security and deportations may deter illegal migration and do nothing to overcome the push factors that prompt them to flee central america in the first place. they are preparing to offer them
a safe and legal alternative path to a better life. we are expanding the admissions program to help vulnerable men, women, and children as those who qualify for refugees. that's on nongovernmental organizations in the region to do this as soon as possible. this approach builds on the recently established april american miners program providing a refugee processing option for certain children with present parents in the united states. we are doing our part to address the syrian refugee crisis. in conjunction with the department of state they are working hard to meet the commitment of admitting 10,000 syrian refugees at the end of the fiscal year. we will screen in a multilayered and intense process with
national security and intelligence agencies across the federal government. over the last year, director joe cleans of the secret service has done a tremendous job reforming the agency including hiring a chief operating officer from outside the secret service and altering the structure and the management and ramping up efforts to hire new members of the workforce and expanding training opportunities. in 2016, we will continue to work on areas that still need improvement. with the help of congress in 2016, we will continue to rebuild the coast guard fleet. this year congress provided funding for a ninth national security cutter designing funding for the offshore cutter and continuing production of the fast response cutter. as reflected in the president's 2017 budget request, we will also seek 150 million for the design of a new heavy ice
breaker in recognition of the expanding activity in the arctic. our federal law enforcement training has been more than a quarter million federal, state, and local officers and agents. at the same time they continually updates the curriculum to address the biggest challenges to include training for active shooter situations. cyber forensics and human trafficking. fema will continue to do the job of supporting the american people in communities to prepare for, respond to, and recover from various disasters. they will enhance resilience and mitigation measures before they strike to prevent loss and save lives. we continue to promote the lawful trait and travel and pursue the president'sus-mexico
high level dialogue and is beyond the initiative with canada. we are implementing the window which by december 16th will enable the sector to use one portal to transmit information to 47 government agencies about exports and imports. there by eliminating over 200 different forms and stream lining the trade process. last week the secretary of commerce and i joined the president of mexico to open a new six-lane bridge near el paso that will replace a 78-year-old two-lane one. next week i will join the secretary of finance in laredo, texas. in conclusion, according to "time" magazine, i have probably the hardest job in america. that's not true. the president has the hardest job in america.
i may rank in the top ten. i have a lot of challenges and a lot of problems and a lot of headaches. there is far too much partisanship and during an election year, politics has been a blood sport in this town. too often it is more important to score political points than achieve smart, sound policy on behalf of the american people. through it all, i still love public service and i am dedicated to serving the american people, protecting our homeland and serving our president. i find inspiration in the amazing stories of our workforce that i told you about at the beginning of this speech. i find inspiration and strength in the batch of letters i received from the american people we serve particularly from the school kids. here's from a young man named
brett shepherd. rand written in pencil. i wanted to say i think you are doing a good job. i ran for class president in the class and i ended up becoming the secretary of homeland security. honestly i would rather be. the president is not all it's cracked up to be. like brett, at this moment in the life of our nation, there is nothing i would rather be than secretary of homeland security. it is and always will be the highlight of my professional life. in the time left to me in office, i pledge all my energy to continue to protect the homeland and leave the department of homeland security a better place than i found it. thank you very much.
>> well, jay, thank you for the longest and best received. they are at my tenure at the wilson center. the conclusion was to all who worked in the department, thank you for your service and a late introduction for the newly minted deputy for intelligence and analysis. time is short. you can applaud that. that's true. the best trained people in the department used to work on the team. time is short. i'm only going to ask one question and i'm calling on my
dear friend to ask the second question as we try to take a few more. my question is this. we have been predicting if are years there could be bombs on airplanes. not in the united states and not on planes going to the united states. there have been bombs on airplanes. the first one is an egyptian airliner that crashed and that's just a week or so ago. i think we think an employee and we have video helping in the used bomber. that was in fact a bomb. he died and everyone else survived.
what additional details can you give us about how intense low you are focused on the issue of airport employees, catering and others bringing bombs on airplanes. >> the good news is we have a very proactive tsa administrator. i think a very proactive secretary of home lent security when it comes to aviation and airport security. we are focused on airport security as i said in my prepared remarks. we produced the number of access points more continuous screening of airline and airport personnel. just two days ago, tsa issued further guidelines to build on that. right after the crash of metro jet 9268, we within a couple of
days put in place further security enhancements at certain airports in the region. i won't identify which ones. things brought on airplanes and we sent inspectors to the airports not just the specific one, but a number of them in the region. i'm concerned about not just responding to the last event, but the potential future event which is 23409 going to be identical to the last. we are focused and considering more that they should be doing more. they put out guidelines that influence the behavior of security at overseas airports. the last part of the departure at airports and those are mostly
in europe. somewhere in the mideast and we regulate those and the security at the last point of departure is good. my prepared remarks and i want to send the officers that is referred to as the clearance. but the overall point is that anything we do in aviation and airport security, you have to strike the right balance between the appropriate level of physical security and not overburdening the american public. the traveling public. as i said, the enhancements we have been posed, wait times have gotten longer. i think the american public understands and appreciates that. >> michael chertoff.
we have a mike coming. >> let me say great talk and great survey of what's been going on and what's to come. i know the director recently testified that there may be more violent jihadis in the world than any previous time. also we are have begun to see in san bernardino and paris what i call crowd sourcing of terrorism. people who are not necessarily trained in country, but in inspired and trained over the internet to carry out a tax. those are low signature and it's not necessary low easy to protect this. i wanted to hear if you can expand on state and local government and law enforcement and with the private sector to help them deal with the new model. we may not have catastrophic terrorist attacks and we may
have multiple low level attacks in various places sequentially or at the same time. >> first of all, i am proud of the fact that mike and i for the good of homeland security struck a good bipartisan relationship. last year at this time when we were trying to get funding for the department and looking at a government shut down of the department, mike and tom ridge stood with me where we highlighted the need to keep funding homeland security for the american people. i appreciate the bipartisan relationship and friendship we have. that's one. the terrorist inspired actor makes for a more complex homeland security challenge.
it's very difficult to identify this city over that city that could be at risk of an attack from a terrorist-inspired actor. as you know through our grant making we provide a lot of assistance to state and local law enforcement. we provide state and local grants and urban area and security area grants that will be announcing if the next couple of days for 2016 and as i see this threat evolve, i think our relationships and grants to state and local law enforcement are more and more important. i made a point and you saw that in the graphic of highlighting active shooter training. it works. i have seen it work. i have seen videos of our very own personnel responding to an
event and responding on impulse with what to tell the public. if you say why did you respond so quickly, we had active shooter training. we have been making a point of highlighting it which is why i went to the miami event last weekend and i will be doing more of this and when i spoke to the major county sheriffs yesterday, i said if you are not doing active shooter training, you need to be. the key to it is very often because of the rapid response. it's going to be multijurisdictional and multidisciplined. and they are all converging on an event and we need to do more of that training and support
that training. somebody self radicalizes. the more we build bridges to communities and muslim communities in particular, the better off we will be. they are thes that have their finger on the pulse of the community. and no time we are going to do a lightning round. the man in the back and the person in classes. those are the three and.
>> president obama released the budget for 2017 and including $40.6 billion for the department of homeland security which is less than 2016. does that mean your department is facing less challenges confronting terrorism and also according to the news, isis said they are going to attack u.s. soil this year. how do you prevent that from happening? >> that was 1 1/2 questions. we are all doing three at once. >> i have to remember. already. >> i will remember. the budget. >> the short answer is we have not at all deprioritized homeland security, but we have to live within the budget
agreement that was made. >> they are not listening to me. the man in the middle and the woman in the back. >> from the middle east research center. mr. secretary, could you definitely into the results of the testing of results and achievements from your programs you described and specifically how close you are getting to improving the tests like from the catastrophic tsa test on weapons coming through last june and the requirement of your predecessor to test the requirement that they can do under the predecessor's term that all containers should be prescreened before coming into america and how successful is the social messaging of culture or government, et cetera of america. >> thank you very much and i think that's katherine. >> yes, it is. in the back. >> thank you to the wilson center and the aspen security
group. there is a new emphasis on cyber security in the budget. is there evidence that the data is used to access systems with the intent of destroying or manipulating so they can no longer rely on the integrity. >> you get the prize for one question. >> the answer is i'm not sure i can comment publicly. we are extremely vigilant in looking for such a thing. the first question is metrics. metrics in terms of scanning. cvp in my judgment is pretty sophisticated about how we go about scanning. cargo. there is the legal mandate which i think you referred to which i had conversations with a number of members of congress about to get to a better place.
i committed to a plan to do that. we committed to raising the percentage of what we actually search, but we have a sophisticated method for identifying high risk cargo and applying extra examination to that at ports and as they are imported. in terms of border security as i mentioned, we want to get to a better place in how we measure border security. we have an initiative that i hope to finish before i leave office. thank you. >> we are slightly overtime, but the subject is fascinating to many of us. at the wilson center, we have something we called cyber boot camp. that is a class that we run for congressional staff. by partisan, to teach them about cyber. we are very good at it and i
want to give a shout out to the digital futures project. i hope you learned a lot. there will be a test in about 10 minutes on everything the secretary said. i just have to say this i guess is the last of the homeland extravaganzas. by this homeland secretary. as you said, thank everyone else for their service. as a personal matter and on behalf of the wilson center and on behalf of so many in the congress that i have intersected all these years. i want to thank you for your service and the department is better because of you. okay. class is dismissed.
primary concession speech at 8:00 p.m. at 8:25 eastern, campaign film from barry goldwater's 1964 new hampshire campaign. at 8:40, a 1980 interview with ronald reagan while on the campaign trail in new hampshire. and at 11:30, the 1984 democratic presidential candidates' debate in iowa. also, campaign ads and 1980 interviews with john anderson, howard baker, and george h.w. bush and more. all of that tonight on "american history tv" on c-span3. hillary clinton's in nevada tonight at a get out the vote rally taking place at the laborer's international union in las vegas. live coverage on c-span starts tonight at 1: 11:30 eastern time. c-span's coverage of the presidential candidates
continues this week with campaign events in south carolina and nevada leading up to the south carolina gop primary and nevada caucuses on saturday february 20th. our live coverage of the results starts on saturday at 7:30 p.m. eastern with candidate speeches and your reaction to the results on c-span, c-span radio and c-span.org. every election cycle we're reminded how important it is for citizens to be informed. >> to me, c-span is a home for political junkies and a way to track the government as it happened. >> i think it's a great way for us to stay informed. >> there are a lot of c-span fans on the hill, my colleagues are going to say, i saw you on c-span. >> there's so much more that c-span does to make sure that people outside the beltway know what's going on inside it. >> house republican policy chair luke messer talks about legislative productivity. explaining the importance of outlining clear policies during chair luke messer talks about
legislative productivity. explaining the importance of outlining clear policies during the election year. he says the high poll numbers of donald trump and bernie sanders are a sign the american people are dissatisfied with their leaders in washington. the indiana republican spoke at the national press club. welcome, everybody. i'm bob with the national press club newsmakers committee, and we are proud to welcome today congressman luke messer, the house republican policy chair. before we get started, we have the high honor of having the president of the national press club, tommy burr, from the "salt lake tribune." tommy, you wanted to say a few words. please do so. >> thank you, bob. thank you, good morning on this rainy morning in washington. i'd like to note you're now amongst a long history of lawmakers and political leaders who have spoken at the club in recent years including presidential candidates ben carson, john kasich, and drup tr donald trump.
since you've endorsed jeb bush, i'd like to note he's not spoken at the club and would welcome him if you'd like to inform him or his brother if he'd like to come as well maybe together. our newsmaker series will continue to invite public policy leaders like yourself to speak at the national press club as we fulfill our role as the place where news happens. thanks for being here. i have to attend to other matters. i'll leave you in the capable hands of bob. >> thanks. so, hello, again. okay. house republican policy chair luke messer is a member of the house leadership and he's going to be discussing governing and issues in election year 2016. what should, what can, what can't pass and why in an election year and what that environment presents as challenges and opportunities. so congressman messer's opening statement will be about 25
minutes will be followed by questions and answers in this one-hour event from credential media and club members and please identify yourselves. elizabeth burke will be holding this microphone. and she will give it to you so you can ask questions into the mike and that way the media has better quality in terms of its questions and answers. congressman messer is the congressman for indiana's sixth congressional district, a large 19-county region. he was elected to congress in 2012 and established himself as an emergiing leader. in his first term he was elected president of the freshman class by his peers. in the second term he was elected house republican policy chair. he also serves on the house financial services and house education workforce committees where he leads issues ranging from k-12 education to banking reform. he is chair of the school choice caucus. prior to caucus, indiana state legislator, led a not for profit
as president and ceo and was partner in two law firms. he graduated summa cum laude. he and his wife, jennifer, who is here today are athe -- jennifer? there yougo. are the participaents of two da, one son. some of those are here today. who's here? okay. both of you would like to add, two dogs. what are their names? n. inaudible ] there you go. okay. luke and his wife are author and illustrator of a children's book about indiana entitled "hoosier heart." he remains a youth smort sports. part of an ongoing series of newsmakers with congressional leaders on governing and major
issues. in addition, tomorrow, three leading national speakers will be addressing at 10:00 a.m. right in this very same room at the national press club the passionate and pollerized politics of autism so we wanted to make sure that everyone is aware of that. i'd like to do before we get going some introductions. first, jamie horowitz, the chairman of the newsmakers committee, and thank, jamijamier your support on all the newsmaker committee does. national press club interns and policy analysts. elizabeth burke, if you would raise your hand, you'll be holding the mike, again. and others are coming but they're not here yet in the rain, and also our on-site intern coordinator and senior policy analyst ben laskey. national press club staff, joanne, was outside the door. richard berg is audio/visual. he helped. he's in the back corner. raise your hand. thank you. and i want to introduce my wife, dr. patricia berg who i say as a
real job as the detector of breast cancer lab at george washington medical center. pat, thanks for all you do to help human kind. and i also want to introduce liz hill, congressman messer's communication director. liz, where are you? in the back corner which is where all we staffers always are. making sure everything happens properly. thanks for all your help in making this event happen, liz. so we will now have congressman messer give his opening comments. >> thank you, bob. thanks for the opportunity to be here today. as bob mentioned, i'm congressman luke messer. i'm chair of the house republican policy committee. i want to thank not only bob
weiner, newsmakers committee event coordinator, tommy burr, the president of club who you just heard from, and jamie horowitz, the chair of the newsmakers committee for inviting me today. i want to thank everybody who's here today for braving -- braving the weather and the rain to find your way here to the club. as bob mentioned, i was asked to speak today on governing during the 2016 election year and i'm excited to have that opportunity. but first i wanted to start with a quick word about the unfortunate passing of supreme court justice antonin scalia over the weekend. judge scalia was a brilliant jurist, a dedicated constitutionalist and with a unique sense of humor and knack for vivid language that made him a favorite of the conservative movement. his wisdom will to doubt continue to touch this country